Am I stuck with sratchbuilding or prebuilt structures?

Discussion in 'G / O / S Scale Model Trains' started by medelman, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. medelman

    medelman New Member

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    Hi!

    Being interested in model railroading ever since a kid, I have gone back and forth on which scale to go with and even had collected some nice n-scale engines and cars in the last couple of years that I now am trying to sell. I decided to go with O/O-27 Gauge for many reasons including the ability for my future children to be involved with trains, but also because of the fun that Lionel and other trains of this size seem to offer. The other reason is because I wanted to be able to realistically model buildings and scenes. While n scale has lots of stuff available now a days, it just seems to small for me to be able to model interiors of buildings, etc. Essentially what I want is to play with miniatures as well as trains. However after looking at a lot of stuff available at the hobby shop, it seems to be mostly pre-built structures that scream, "I'm collectible, do not alter me in any way". As good as I'd like to be in building my own structures from scratch, I am just not to that level yet and would like to start with a kit. Can anyone offer any suggestions? Trust me, I plan to have some of the unrealistic, but fun operating accessories on my layout, but I'd also like to be able to create some nice eye candy.

    Matt
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

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    B.T.S. and Bar Mills have craftsman type kits in O scale. While they will look very nice when done, the price might put you off. Bear in mind that each kit contains nearly 4x as much material, and cuts that are twice as long, as the corresponding kit in HO scale.

    Scratchbuilding is not as daunting as it may seem, especially if you start with simpler structures, and also use mock-ups to help plan the bigger and/or more complicated ones.

    O scale also has the advantage that there are "regular" equivalents to much of the "specialized" hobby supplies. For example, since O is 1:48, veneer or plywood that is 1/16" to 1/4" is suitable, and readily available. You cannot buy an HO scale equivalent at Home Depot... ;)

    Good luck, and hope to hear more about your projects!

    Andrew
  3. Renovo PPR

    Renovo PPR Just a Farmer

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    There is far more than enough stuff out there that will make you happy. It is very expensive if you buy pre-made buildings though. If you don't get some links I will try to find some later for you.
  4. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Matt: I found a similar situation when I went looking for structures for my wife's layout. Nothing in O scale but Lionel and Plasticville.
    You may have to get your shop to order in for you.
  5. Frank53

    Frank53 Member

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    I have had good results with Ameritowne kits - which are some pretty basic three story buildings in O scale.

    Here are a few examples.

    By using two of the four walls on two different buildings, i was able to make this city scene run into a wasted amount of corner space/ From the corner to the track at a 45 is less than ten inches and the space from the track to the wall on the straights is about three inches.
    I used two of the other walls to make the five storry addition to the green building on the left.



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    The materials are easy to work with, paint nicely and have some detail.
    I used the two extra walls from the yellow building to fill this dead space next to a dryer vent in the opposite corner:


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    I also scanned the wall and placed prints of the wall pattern on the vent to make the vent appear to be part of a larger building. These are just taped up at the time teh photo was taken, although I have since finalized these:


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    Have to fix that "Ice" sign.

    This is also an Ameritowne kit - kind of a "double wide:


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    This is the beginnings of the scene.

    Added the beinnings of a parking lot and building different loading docks to give the building more of a presence:


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    This is made from one Ameritowne factory kit like the one above, and a bunch of Ameritowne window walls:


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    I have a section about building this structure on my website -----> Lionel Lines

    So it didn't get too monotonous with all the Ameritowne - I scratchbuilt the buildings in this corner:


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    Using a combination of kits and some scratchbuilding, you can build just about anything you want. And this does not take a great skill level. All of these were pretty much my first crack at this type of stuff.
  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

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    Frank...

    Nice work! I think that answers the question.. ;) :D

    Andrew
  7. Dr. John

    Dr. John Member

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    Matt,

    Walthers Cornerstone makes some nice building kits as does Atlas. Bachmann/Plasticville kits are still available and are inexpensive - very simple to build but they lend themselves to bashing and modifying very well. A new coat of paint can do wonders. Design Preservation Models offers a few O kits that are nice also.

    You might want to search the internet for the various brands mentioned. Few hobby shops these days carry a wide selection of O building kits.

    Good luck and have fun!
  8. cnw1995

    cnw1995 Member

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    Search also for Korber Models - they have great kits. How about Downtown Deco too - I think they were mentioned.