Sunday, March 15, 2009

Begin Slaughterhouse #5 - 2 Hours Work

Over the past few weeks I went to Chicago and number of times and visited some hobby shops. Many of the shops I used to frequent are no longer in business. I purchased the following for Slaughterhouse #5:

Central Valley #101 HO Stock Car Kit $11.95
Atlas #778 HO Scale Cows/Horses & Farm Animals $4.25
Model Power $5793 Kit 72 unpainted animals $12.99

My goal is to have the slaughterhouse complex finished for the SER convention on June 13th, which is about three months away.

The prototype of this facility is Champion Packing in Waterloo, Iowa. I could not locate any photos on line.

It is hard to keep decals from getting destroyed or lost. I tape mine face down to the kit's box lid.

I'm going to paint the brick parts first. This is a midwestern packing plant so it might have red or a yellowish brick. I might change it from red brick to a yellow so that it doesn't look so much like a kit.

The stack is round, one piece unit, not a two piece like pictured on the box lid.

I sprued and prepped all the brick parts and prepared them for painting. This means that I put down double sided masking tape on some flat cardboard sections that are about the size of the opening to my spray booth.

* I may paint the inside of the wall sections flat black

The structure is two separate buildings! Oh, this opens up some doors! This will allow the two to be reconfigured and look different. That is the real trick with a kit; to make it NOT look like a kit.

I drew several sketches in my notebook and decided to finish the two buildings and then look at the assembly of the complex. It appears that there are enough parts to complete the building in several fashions.

All the parts were washed in warm, soapy water and allowed to dry. Once they are dry, you don't want to touch the surface. Floquil paints are SO FINE that you will see your fingerprints painted on the building if you touch it prior to painting.

As I place the building sides on the tape boards I make notes on the board such as the paint type and color, any warnings or notes about masked parts.

* Idea - Develop a sticky sheet of carboard that is ready for parts so I don't have to put on masking tape.

I'm going to paint the backsides of the structure a flat black first, so I marked the boards as such.

I drew in my notebook a sketch of jig for holding round parts. The brick chimney has to be carefully painted since it is a long, round tube. The jig is a board with two uprights and a dowel threads through the chimney so that it can be rotated like a lathe.

Before I start cutting off parts I take a digital photograph of the sets of components with the number indicators toward the camera. This allows me to be able to figure out which part is which should I forget after painting.

When de-spruing (or spruing as I call it) I break down the sprue trees (thin bars of plastic that hold the parts and are used for guiding the plastic in the mold) to make them easier to handle.

For spruing I use a sprue cutter (a pair of sharp tweezers) or a Xuron cutter that is dedicated to sprues. Usually this is a track cutter that has gotten dull. I write "for plastic only" on the handle with a Sharpie pen.

All the brick sections are now clean and on the paint boards.

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