Modelling time has been a bit all over the place lately but I managed to get some `on and off’ time over a few days and this resulted in the construction of the Spirit Design 20ft Portable Station building. This is a laser cut kit made out of `micro -ply(?)’ and is the first one of this type I have ever taken on. As I am a medium skilled painter I decided that I should try and put at least one coat of paint on each part before assembly to reduce the chances of colours running beyond their assigned borders, the window frames and doors are a good example of this. The more than adequate instructions give suggestions for paint to use and I worked my way through my existing paint collection to get some `close enough’ colours. The nearest hobby shop is 130km and our local toy shop stocks only Tamiya acrylics in bottles, which is still way heaps better than nothing.
Wall colour – Tamiya 55 flesh. The institutions suggested a mixture of Humbrol Flesh and white, on a sample test the Tamiya flesh came up lighter in colour than the Humbrol and I stayed with it. I had it in a `paint pen’ and not a bottle, but it went on fairly well. Roof colour – Humbrol M100 as recommended, just happened to have it the paint box. Trim colour – Tamiya acrylic white – from the local toyshop. Door colour – a Tamiya acrylic blue – from the paint box and `near enough’.
After the first coats of paint had dried I began construction using Bostik MDF glue because of its fast drying capability. This did end up with one small problem, which I will reveal at the end of this article. To apply the glue I squeezed a small amount onto the polythene bag and then used a bamboo skewer to place the glue onto the joint. A small amount of plain label `super glue’ finished each joint.
The etching of the corrugations for the roof sections makes those sections prone to warping. Adding paint makes it even worse. Note for next model: paint corrugated sections AFTER assembly. I painted the smooth side to even out the effects of the paint but even then I had to cut some `planks’ from the wood `sprue’ to make stiffeners.
I followed the assembly instructions pretty much as they were written and the results, after a second coat of paint and then some touch up painting are as follows.
The one mistake that I made in assembling the kit can be seen on the left. One of the end walls ended up being slightly out of alignment in relation to the base section. With laser cut precision dimensions for all the kit parts this ended up in a small amount of distortion of the building. Probably no more that some of the prototype had after some stumps had sunk or termites had munched for a few years. I have yet to work out if I fit the chimney or not, but knowing the region of the in which I am setting the station a warm fire would be appreciated by the staff from early Autumn through to early Spring. Next jobs – The wiring and the platforms.