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new kid on the block!

58077 Views 324 Replies 37 Participants Last post by  Ember
hello all, after far too many hours spent reading all the excellent advice and information on this site i've got going with my wooden track and literally up to my elbows in contact adhesive, grouting and paint mixing, and loving every minute of building my new sandstone cliffs.i got going again with the old scalextric track over the summer as a neighbour gave me a load of old curves, the track grew, bigger than the toy room and into the big space i've got near my workshop, during august that track was decorated and filled with props (with help from my 6 year old, who built a lego snack area for the pits!) and we have since staged a successful tournament last saturday with 27 drivers of all ages (not bad for a village of 250 people), since then i started on track number 2 in wood, have done the levels, routing and nearly finished the cliffs, but awaiting the copper and still tons of modelling to do.....but how happy am i doing it?, you get to regress to being a 4 year old mucking about with dirt and paint and glue, then when its done you turn in to an 8 year old and speed around a small spanish village at 1/32nd scale....GREAT.

anyway, just wanted to sign in and will try and post some pics soon of the 2 tracks,(when i've figured out how!)

cheers sig
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lars.. thanks indeed, i have been swatting up on your story over the last 2 days, your road surfaces are fantastic, the first idea for the wooden track was to free myself from all the restrictions of bought track, and play with changes in material and surfaces, like a real rally, i wanted the cars to skid through mud and back onto tarmac, but now cobbles is in the equation..i've got to have a go, it doesnt seem to effect the drift ing of the cars on the curves either which surprises me. i'm thinking about it for the area around the tree and church, what do you reckon?

ok heres our village church

and heres my attempt to eminate it!, i got rid of the mdf fluff with plasterboard joint paste, which sets quite well and sticks to cardboard too, put on with fingers, then scraped, etched and generally mucked about with during the rest of the afternoon. forgot to cut the bell window into the cardboard tower and now its probably too late, pantiles are cardboard obviously, still think it needs a bit more grime, but need to let it dry more first, looks well in the plaza though

quite chuffed, even though i should nt be mucking around with this stuff on a week day!!

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praise indeed from another one of the masters!, bill, you are pretty much one of the big reasons i started this track, i dont know how many times i've watched the vid of fiorio, and the making of fotos, and you'll notice i've plagiarised your great idea of racing round the square. i hope you dont mind, it was just too good to leave alone!!!!!?
cheers, brad, yep the clock and balustrade need doing aswell as the door, just put the glass in the windows, and i notice theres some stone balls on the eaves to do, plus an iron cross on the facade! i want to try and fine line some more detail on the facades triangle, it looks like its made of butter!

thespace is great, its the villages old dancehall and cinema, 450 m2 where i have my workshop and we recently reopened the bar, the tracks are above the bar, i'll post a pic

cheers for now, the kids are back!!!
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ok i took the lid off the village to start putting the paste on the floor ready for cobbles and tree roots, so as it takes ages to dry i thought i'd sort out the cave...while its easily accesible, luckily the polystyrene isnt all stuck down yet so it was relitively easy to do with the black grout and the badly mixed emulsion!. i'd better sort out lights for the roof of the 2 tunnels otherwise it'll be buried forever, dolls house lights i hear are what i need?? can i pass a couple of fine cables now and then wire up later or will it be a nightmare? and will the heat from normal small bulbs melt the polystyrene?, i'll organise the wiring to link up with the plaza lamp posts that i've got planned.
i guess i need to plan for these things going wrong, the cave isnt the most accesible of places, it involves taking the village off every time, which means more joints in the copper tape etc!
any way help needed please (again!)

heres some atmospherics!!hee hee, i love macro!

my guys are gonna need some flippin tools, can't get much done with just a cloth, maybe thats what they're argueing about?
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cheers guys, its great to get good feedback for something you love doing...and its all luck, i'm just learning the ropes here!

anyway i've had my head in a bucket of plasterboard paste doing the plaza.
heres some brief fotos of the process, and many thanks to lars for his detailed account of his method in his thread
the difference is i put the paster directly onto the routed mdf. first i reinforced underneath the panels with pine, and then cout slots into the top of the mdf to give the plaster something to 'bite 'onto, the mdf was untreated
i t seems to stick very well, i tried scraping a bit off (around the footprint of the church)and i ended up digging into the wood, its so porous, that it grips inherently.
then after 2 coats of plaster (about 2-3 mm total) and 2 days (its frustratingly slow) i couldnt wait anymore and started drawing the plaza on. the great thing about the plaster is it brings up loads of cool textures ' by mistake', so look out for features in the plaster and draw them out when carving.
i just used an old screw driver and a straight steel ruler

for the curved bits you just do it by hand. then have a good look at it (prferably back lit ) and go round again, widening score lines as necessary, the ruler tends to make things look too straight, so you go round again, messing it up a bit. the flag stones had a much larger groove than the cobbles (twist the screwdriver while dragging it!) the roots of the tree are real roots , stuck into the plaster mixture and then carved around to make them look like they're pushing up the old flagstones. the 'soil is greener and i'll put some weeds on there now.
all breakage of the plaster whilst carving is great, it makes the cobbles look older.

i used black spray gloss after the plaster, and then wall paint, on a VERY dry thick obviously cant get paint into the grooves

its really very easy, all the painting (after the black dried) took about 20 minutes! and it real gives great effects without even trying, everyone should have a go.

right i want to fix it back on the track cos these flurescents are doing my head in!

hope you like the result

heres some rich church goers!

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some softer fotos, i need to sort out the treatment where it joins the green area and the bridge but hey....!

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thanks again folks , i'm not too worried about the plaster, if it cracks it should follow one of the cuts any way, and the whole lot was quite well sealed with the black gloss, plus, it really was well fixed to the virgin mdf

regarding the cabling, yes i've been wondering how to do it, it will be wired up underneath, and i;ll sort the village as a seperate entitiy, to be connected under the bridge and near the grass, so it can be taken on and off, the crossing, i'll copy the sclextric one i've got here, should be fun!

bridge bits should arrive next week....whoooosh!
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hi kids!

OK at last i managed to download the precursor to the laying of the plaster in the plaza to make everything clear, showing the carved up mdf and the pole for the tree to rest on

also on a walk around here at the weekend we saw some cool (and easy)countryside accesories, which i've tried to emulate

the 'fuente' (drinking fountain)

this need painting still but is a bit of old rusty steel tube, with plaster inside (shaped with finger to make a bowl shape) and a carved up bit of wood (done with small grinder ) and some palster paste to give the stone texture, the tap is a steel hook (nail type )shortened and with a blob of weld on the top (and a bit of welding wire that got stuck on there which i quite like!) obviously needs integrating into the landscape as yet

then we found a memorial cross, which is dead easy, a carved up bit of mdf left over and a nail drilled into the bottom, the cross i made from stainless, but could easily be from a saint christopher or something....(i'm gonna nick one that we've got in the house for sticking on the front of the church

also been applying plaster board paste to other bits of the track, the texture you get is so good that it makes even the painted and aged pieces of track look crude!, trying to decide on the other building too, a bar for sure (probably our bar!) and some balcony detail would be nice, we'll see!

thats all for now, seeee ya!
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thankyou for your concern rene!, indeed, that particular rogue element (there are a few lurking in the track due to my inexperienced routers hand!) has been dealt with and eliminated, the cars can get all the way until under the tunnel now before exploding into shrapnel. i ran out of mdf under the tunnel and it hasn't been routed at all yet! its just the way i work!

cheers sig
ok, time for another update, been painting the roads, in preparation for the bridge (hopefully thursday), and generally mudding down all the tracks,apart from the tunnel to the main road, which still needs to be sorted (not sure what to do with the overhanging road!)

also started on more buildings ( an abstracted version of our bar and a beaten up old house) has anyone ever put fotos of real windows behind the perspex, it should look more realistic than just paionting them black, i'll give it a try later, as the bar windows are very big and it should give more of a sense of depth.

the thing is now i've got a problem with the plaza that 'leaks' out the back.....between the church and the bar leads a path into the rest of the village, but at the moment its just a gap, i need to give the impression of the rest of the village but on flat boards? fotos , fake perspectives, blurred looking buildings??? what do i do??

this next one is for rene!, to prove i fixed the slot, and showing the nice place for a picnic, i'm gonna have to do a crash scene on that left turn after the straight to fill in the gap on the main road after the turn

we're getting there..hope the bridge bits get done for thursday, could be exciting

cheers sig, (any ideas about my plaza corner welcome)
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been out with the camera, tking fotos of the bar windows, and doors, and accesories (ice cream, black board etc), then resize with a bit of photoshop jiggery pockery and bob's your uncle, instant bar!!, just need the sun shade and aluminium chairs!!??

brad and ember, thanks very much for your help, ember i reckon i'm gonna try and do the bas relief thing, the layers of card etc and try and get a false sense of perspective, i reckon the half and half method you suggested will help me define rthe street easier and make it easier to create, gonna be tricky all the same, but great idea thanks....sounds like you've had every job under the sun!
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in case you're wondering where i've been ("no not really" i hear you all say) i've got copper.....YESSSSSSS!, its mostly down and i've been laying rubber in my village square!!!!. OH THE JOYS!!!!!, the copper lays down the power really well and is weirdly responsive, the ninco cars just have tooooo much power for those tight curves, its GREAT!!!. I'VE NEVER RACED ON WOOD BEFORE, it sounds different which is odd, but the stone edging and all the scenery is great to race around, (and be aware of!, the cliff face is about 8 mm from the lambos, wing mirror!)
i found a couple of rock faces that needed attention with the neumatic drill, to shave back, and the grip os ok, good for drifts and controled slides, still need the bit inder the tunnel, but just bought my extra mdf for routing tomorrow.

the only thing is a couple of fills to do with fake wood (bad routing)and i think with the last bit i'll paint it once the copper is down as in no time at all the plastic guide rips some of the edge of the copper tape, but that is easy to fix,

the crossover works ok but was a bit scary drilling holes into those precious cobbles!!!

once its all done i'll just have to go round tweaking and fine painting again

really great though!

by the way the bridge bits weren't ready so had to console myself buying a ninco gulf porsche for 25 euros! its a hard life

will try and do a vid or summat, if i get a chance between races!!!
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ok just to prove errrr....that I errrr....havent just been playing!!!!! heres a rubbishy vid of the track working, also with the new mdf i've been boxing out the edges of the track (got a good idea for a roof dust protection) and gluing dirt down under the bridge section ready for farmer giles' wooden garage (with hidden jewels!)all exciting stuff. dont expect much speed on the vid, i wouldnt let my boy use the fast stuff!!


vid here
cheers guys, lars the cobbles are great cheers thanks to you, the music is something i did earlier in the year before rediscovering scalextric, not finished but thought it'd be mediocre enough for a pulic viewing!
rally p, the pajero is my boys favourite, based wholly on the fact that its muddy!
and ember, the 'parked' lambourgini was one that fell off 3 seconds earlier, no parking allowed infront of the bar, even the church steps are dangerous!

so now what!>....

check list (to square up my own head more than anything)
olive terraces
farmers garage under bridge
street lamps
false perspective on back corner(already mocked something up)
balcony and doors on old house
'cast iron' bench in the middle of the square
hanging ivy over cave entrance
the pits in cave
crash scene (looking for a diecast tuning car with openable doors)
road works on main road?
paint another 21 people!

plenty to keep me going, especially looking forward to the crash scene, getting the dremel out!!!!

speak again soon

cheers sig
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ok , so on a completely different tack ever since seeing a cool vid about driving rally cars on tarmac, i've been wondering wether its possible to make a slot car do a donut!!!! potential for track number 3 !(don't tell my wife!), and i've been mucking about with a prototype.

here it is donuts

its routed on faced chip board because i thought i'd need the slipperyness for the tail outs, but in the end i had to paint some gravel on for more grip as the cars weren't getting anywhere, then the gravel was too grippy so it needed sanding down until it gave the right amount of slip and grip for the correct tail out action. the outer diametre is probably 35-39cm, and the inner about 24cm (routed around old grinding discs, and for the final version i think it would be better to start from the inside and work out (like the aston martin, (except there were some problems with bad routing in that direction)
i think it has some possibilitities and is quite difficult to drive, plus i've not seen it done before, but ofcourse i may be wrong. if anyone has any tips or clues how to make it better , they'd be appreciated , for =example the crossover really should be perperdicular to the curves to avoid smashing the guides every time!

anyway , thought i'd share the experiment with you all

comments welcome

cheers sig
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semi set it up, with rivets and all that, needs the electrics sorting and in the end i'm gonna do pant aging, dripping rust etc from the rivets etc

obviously not finished yet, needs building into the rock and all the old posters on the old boys garage

more soon

cheers sig
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thanks folks, getting the bridge sorted has given me the impetuous i needed for the next bit, sealevel, the bits were all laser cut according to a drawing that i did for the exact space, i would have taken a foto of the seperate parts but i was too excited to get it done!!

so i've been tinkering with the old boys lockup, my brother showed me how to resize images without loosing quality, and i sanded down the printer paper before soaking in watery pva glue for the 'painted on effect'(thanks to tile guy for that), then use your fingernail to highlight the wooden planks, then the usual washes and grit splashes applied

the weeds are bits of builders brushes glued into a hole and then painted a bit green

the tractor is an old one that we had when we were kids, detailed a little it (not a lot)
i've tinted the bridge with dry brush black and brown a bit to exagerate the detailing

then my brother redrew a cool painting on the side of a wall in tarrega (the general poster) and we put it on the village mechanics door, who seems to be thirsty after cutting his knuckes on the minis small engine bay!
hope you like it, i'm having fun
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hi folks , thanks for the comments

polo stu the garage idea came about by chance..(like so many things), it was originally going to be cut rock face around the tunnel, but i ran out of polystyrene, and then got to thinking about the use of space and so the old boys lockup and the tunnels/caves were born, i'm sure you'll start finding little nooks and crannies on your big track.
rally p, yep for your savannah grass land no doubt, its hairs cut of a cheap builders brush (the type they use for pointing up rock walls i think) which has quite strawlike thin bristles, also some of the non plastic sweeping brushes look ok, then cut twice the length you need in a clump, bend it over in the middle and with a fine screwdriver dip it into a pot of glue and then wedge it into a predrilled hole, its kind of like planting clumps of hair, then when the glue is dry it might need trimming and tinting to the colour necessary
bill thanks again for the praise, the cars make it round ok because they usually tail out a bit on the downhill, compared to the cliff face tolerance(about 3mm) here theres loads, also i kind of like the idea that the wheels drive over the weeds, its a shame the old boy in his garage doesn't have more of an angry face, i'd be mad as hell!
just won my boy racer tuning car on ebay so i'll be warming up the dremmel and the hammer for its arrival on the crash scene soon! gonna be needing a diecast tow truck if anyone knows where??

bye for now sig
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