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 Post subject: Yardmaster's Office
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2020 6:10 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2014 7:05 am
Posts: 443
Another fun paper/card building project, the "Yardmaster's Office" from the April, 1954, issue of Toy Trains magazine:
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Penned by Hal Carstens for the magazine's "Cutouts" section, this small building has many uses on the layout, possibly even as a small station. Made a few mods from a digital scan for the windows and doors. A few pennies worth of supplies and an hour or two of work, this was a lot of fun.

Paul


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 Post subject: Re: Yardmaster's Office
PostPosted: Fri Nov 20, 2020 11:09 am 
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Posts: 443
Added a stove-pipe to the yardmaster's office, figuring the guy deserved a bit of heat during winter. Made the roofline a bit less mundane as well.

Scouring the Toy Trains pile, found a "cut-out" for a telephone shed. After a bit of editing via MS Paint, a quick assemply:
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I stuck a utility pole (dowel with a touch of Minwax) at the back for dropping a line, but I might remove that and just use one of my orphan tinplate telephone poles.

Paul II


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 Post subject: Re: Yardmaster's Office
PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2020 1:30 pm 
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The last of the yardmaster triumvirate, the tool shed:
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File comment: Tool shed cutout from Toy Trains magazine
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I made a couple of minor modifications in construction. First, I moved the door from inside to an exterior sliding version hanging on a matchstick "track". I then added a "cement" threshold to mask the fact that the door was now rather short. A few signs and it's done. It will get a shot of clear lacquer to brighten it up as well as protect the ink-print. Eventually I'll need to figure out what to do with the masonite base. I was thinking I'd apply some ballast or just paint it a color that would match the indoor/outdoor carpet that covers the top of the layout.


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 Post subject: Re: Yardmaster's Office
PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:35 am 
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I didn't really talk about construction methods here, so a few notes.

(1) I scanned the relevant pages from original copies of the magazine, although later I found a digital collection of Toy Trains I could have used for cleaner copies.

(2) After scanning, I made a few minor changes, one being I blacked out the windows using MS Paint. Originally I had thought about cutting out the windows and replacing them with glazed scale versions, but decided against that as I was looking for a "tinplate" look. After making the changes to the images, I printed the sheet(s) on cardstock (you'll need two copies if you're going to cut out the windows and doors and paste them in from behind for a 3-D effect).

(3) The cardstock makes it a bit easier to handle, but is still a bit flimsy, and I know these will get handled/banged around by little hands, so I pasted (Elmers spray adhesive) the printed cardstock onto a sheet of matt-board (the stuff used for picture framing). This is roughly 1/16-inch thick, and provides quite a bit of rigidity. I could have used an old cereal box as an alternative, but that's a bit lighter and I had plenty of the matt-board laying around.

(4) Cutting them out is a chore. Straight edges of individual panels were cut using an old guillotine cutter we have. Interior cuts, such as windows and doors, were made using a hobby knife, free-hand. Using a sharp knife is important, as the cardstock and matt-board tears under stress, leaving ragged edges. Take your time and be careful, as it's easy to move too quickly and cut yourself (my experience is it's easier to cut yourself with a dull knife than a sharp one). If you've cut out windows and doors, you'll need to paint the matt-board edges to match. I use the inexpensive acrylic craft paints found at the local craft store for this.

(5) If you're pasting in doors/windows from behind, go ahead and do that before assembly. Once you get exterior walls up, it can be difficult to position details, so best to do this as much as possible prior to assembly.

(6) Assembly is pretty straight-forward. You'll need to decide on what to use for a base. I used a small piece of Masonite, but a good, stiff bit of corrugated will work, or even another piece of matt-board. Draw an outline of the structure on the base for alignment purposes, or you use a small square if you have one. You'll need to do this to make sure the corners are relatively square. For assembly, I use Titebond glue. It's a bit heavier than straight white glue but forms a stronger bond. I also use a few balsa or basswood scraps to reinforce the corners, which also provides more surface area for the glue. Once you have the exterior walls glued together and fixed to the base, let it sit and dry thoroughly.

(7) Once the walls are up and you're good with other wall details, install the roof. Again, I use a few bits of balsa or basswood along the edges to provide additional glue-surface. If you cut the windows out and glazed them, installing an interior light, you'll need to make your roof a lift-off so you can get at the bulb when it inevitably fails.

(8) The last thing to be done is to cover the corners and the peak of the roof (if you have one) to hide the raw edges of the matt-board. I print another copy of the scan on a sheet of paper, cut the corners out, and fold them vertically in an "L" shape to form a corner. Then I just paste them over the corner using a glue-stick. Similar method for the roof-peak. Pretty simple and it makes a neat job of it.

I haven't decided yet on how to cover the base. If you're going to stick with a strict "tinplate" look, probably best to simply paint them in a medium gray or a bright green, similar to the metal bases Lionel and Flyer used on their sheet-metal buildings. An alternative is to scenic them with a bit of ballast, ground foam, or other materials to make it look natural. Personal preference rules here.

That's about it; hopefully I haven't left anything out. Lots of fun for a snowy winter day.


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