Materials to construct buildings with

 
  DCook Chief Train Controller

Location: The standard state
Hello, I am rather new to the idea of model railways and wanted to start off by building models of certain Sydney stations, without track, scenery and other buildings, what materials and techniques should I use

I am planning to build models of Carlingford station, Epping station and Cheltenham station in the condition that they were in the late 70s and early 80s

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  DJPeters Deputy Commissioner

There are plenty of things you can use such as plastic styrene sheet from Evergreen and others, cardboard not corrugated type but flat compressed type, MDF 3 mm thick you can cut that with a saw or a Stanley  type knife and a straight edge if needed. If you can cut it then you can use it is a general rule even tinplate if you have metal work skills. The choice is yours try a bit of everything and then settle on the one you find is the easiest for you.

Sir Roderick Stewart (Rod Stewart the singer) uses 3 mm MDF for the cores of his buildings and builds them up from there using ready to buy things or he makes them if needed. Just think of a building as a box shaped thing with some fancy work on the outside of it. A larger building can be made in several box shapes and then glued altogether to get the final building.

Brick papers or plastic sheets are available to add to the outside of buildings if you want them most good hobby type shops would have something like that.  

Also check on places like you tube for videos on making buildings etc. But above all have fun building what ever you want.

Here is one I am building and it is simply a MDF base and detail things like brickwork and roofs glued onto that and some paint added it is still not finished though but getting there just the same. This a model of the Fire Station that was used in the old TV show Emergency many years ago now.

One other thing you never know your luck but you might find that some Australian kit maker and there are a few has done a kit of those stations or else you can get one to use to hack it around to get what you want.

  xdford Chief Train Controller

I have also used similar techniques to David using Foam Core, which with Card you can get virtually for nix as offcuts from a local picture framer and making stickers to place on or adding three dimensional card and shapes extras.

I have a number of items that you can download for free at https://sites.google.com/view/stagnesrailway20 and follow the links through at the bottom of each page.

The buildings and station platforms on the following page were all built with this method  
http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=12657&forum_id=65  as well as
http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=9679&forum_id=14

They are all photo realistic enough that with the "two or three foot away, they look OK" rule and the cost for each only a couple of dollars (...if that..) for the paper and ink.

Hope this helps

Regards

Trevor
  DCook Chief Train Controller

Location: The standard state
Thank you both for your well thought out replies, one question though

Are there any companies that sell things like station signs (Preferably NSWGR era) or similar items such as platform number signs?
  xdford Chief Train Controller

Thank you both for your well thought out replies, one question though

Are there any companies that sell things like station signs (Preferably NSWGR era) or similar items such as platform number signs?
"DCook"


Rather than hunt around in shops and coming to a dead end more than likely, take a couple of pictures of different signs that you want and copy and paste them on to the vacant spaces in the print out sheets that I use.  I have done this with signal arms, station signs, speed limit , slow,  road signs, W signs etc in those vacant spaces along with loco number boards which has worked out well for me!  You can scale them up/ down accordingly.  

By the way, for those buildings I use a single A4 sized sticker paper and fit on as much as I can. The sheets work out to about $1 each at Office Jerks or similar. It also makes it easy to get onto the foam core.  while I use old margarine lids etc as a backing for those signs and signal arms.

While I have not tried it, you could also take a few pix of the fronts of vending machines and stick them on small appropriate sized wooden blocks etc and paint the sides black or whaever colout as I remember a number of NSW stations had them on platforms. They would be small enough to act as fillers.

Hope this helps,

Cheers

Trevor
  LaidlayM Chief Commissioner

Location: Research
Thank you both for your well thought out replies, one question though

Are there any companies that sell things like station signs (Preferably NSWGR era) or similar items such as platform number signs?
DCook
https://stephenjohnsonmodels.com.au/product-category/sjm/detail-parts/buildingdp/
Try this.

Mark
  Lambing Flat Chief Train Controller

Location: My preference....... Central West NSW, circa 1955....
Thank you both for your well thought out replies, one question though

Are there any companies that sell things like station signs (Preferably NSWGR era) or similar items such as platform number signs?
DCook
Have a look through the extensive range of NSW detailing parts available from Anton's Trains. You should find pretty much everything you need in there. I use them extensively on 'Lambing Flat'.

http://antonstrains.com.au/index.html
  DJPeters Deputy Commissioner

As xdford suggested take photos of signs or make them up on a computer and print them out. Either way will work. I have to make a station name board for some buildings I have recently built and that will be what I do locate the font or as near to it as you can on a computer printing program most computers these days come with already to go if you look for it. Use Office if you have it or a free version of it or similar that you can down load and you can then make up any signs etc that you like either using photos or doing it yourself. Print it out on to paper allow the printed page a hour or more to completely dry and cut out your sign and fix it to some card or board that suits the sign and then spray a clear coat over it before you install it on the building and Shazam instant signage at negligible cost and you can then custom make signs etc to suit yourself if needed.  I have to make a custom sign for a Fire Station I made and that is what I intend to do for the sign on it.

Whatever you use office or another similar thing you can download more fonts if you need a particular style for something so really you only need to be creative and you can do it yourself almost. You can do decals like this as well if you get some clear decal paper and a decal kit making kit that has fixer spray in it or buy some fixer spray to put on the decal sheet after printing it out, this protects the printing and stops it disintegrating when you put it into the water.

Have fun though, you will soon be able to make your signs etc for just about anything you want.

Oh and like XDford say's if you look at it from a metre away and it looks alright you have the battle half won almost. If you look to closely at it you will find faults, but then look at signs these days especially and you can find faults without really looking at them closely, misspelled words are the most common thing these days though.
  railmod Chief Train Controller

If you're looking for signs then some of the photo web pages can be a great source, eg: https://s86.photobucket.com/user/usnvet76/media/mixads8.jpg.html
Cheers Alex.

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