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Chuck Most

Foreign Objects Import Auto Repair- WIP

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Awhile back my appendix decided to be an arse, so a little surgery was required. This led to me being placed on restriction while I recover, which led to me getting basically a month-long vacation from work. So, what to do with the extra spare time until December? Well, I decided to dip into some stuff I had laying around and use it in a display.

The first thing I hit upon was a name. "Foreign Objects". Kinda schlocky but I liked it, so I whipped up a sign with some Woodland Scenics dry transfer lettering. 

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A quick mockup with some paper-lined foam board looked a little like this...

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The sidewalks might be temporary, or I might change the paint color, we'll see. More foam board was used for the building- this may be the actual building I use or I might build something else, using this as a pattern. Here you can also see the chain-link fence and some of the vehicles which will be used in the scene.

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I'd never used any kind of ground cover before, so I opted for the easy way out with the grass and used grass mat glued into place. The gravel driveway is Woodland Scenics railroad ballast. To attach it, I brushed on Mod Podge, sprinkled it on, and sprayed it down with some hair spray after I'd brushed the loose stuff off the top. The shrubbery is also from Woodland Scenics and it was attached in pretty much the same way. Since this photo was taken I've extended the gravel past the gate and around the back wall of the shop. I also picked out a few of the small rocks that tried to escape and hang out in the bushes. :)

103_2461.thumb.JPG.0f0e2e94d5c261535551aWorking on the layout of the shop now. The building is not permanently attached to the base, by the way... still not sure if I'll use the foam building or use it as a pattern to make something else. The idea here is a small-town shop, in a small building, on the corner of a street. There are technically two bays, but in a pinch you could probably work on three cars at a time, but being that this is patterned after a one-man sort of operation, this size should be fine. Most of the tools are from the old Fujimi garage and tools set. Again, they're something I've had laying around forever... might as well put 'em to use. 

103_2459.thumb.JPG.e6ff4014948e1b2213c9bA quick view of the layout- the area that's clear will be the office/waiting room/restroom/etc. area. In the shop we have an Austin Mini with a Honda 13B swap getting some final work done, and a Geo Storm parked over the hoist. Exact final placement of the equipment may vary... as of right now I'm just trying to get an idea of what I have to work with. 

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You've made a good start Chuck, and this diorama has a lot of potential. You can let your imagination run freely as you build the whole scene.

David

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I like it, Chuck ... I did some good model work also while laid up from surgery :)

Just remember in your condition you shouldn't be sweeping the garage or throwing out any junk!  :D

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Did a little interior work last night. Got a basic layout of the lobby area, and used some more foam board. In this case I think I'll just go ahead and use the foam board walls as-is with some detailing. 

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Here we have the main lobby/office in place. The room with the wood roof is the restroom, and I'll just pretend that the water heater and a few other doodads stored in there. It'll be closed off anyway. Space is now at a bit more of a premium, but our mechanic can still squeeze in a third car sort-of, as shown by the '49 Merc with it's nose in the door. 

103_2466.thumb.JPG.c6afc7fd8f19fb32b1e2bHere I have cut out the doorway leading out into the shop, and two windows. The restroom door will not be cut open, but it's location is scribed into the foam board. These will be dressed with frames later. A small desk will sit along the windows in the corner, and there will be a sofa or a bench along the opposite side of the room. 

103_2467.thumb.JPG.e32873ab3d92dfea08249I also cut out some window openings for the exterior of the building, here we see all that window-making madness in a shot that reminds me of the cover to Pink Floyd's Ummagumma album. 

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Nice work chuck. Now if you want to dress the window frames out , I usually use EverGreen styreene strip . The best glue to use is a Clear epoxy . As for gluing a corner , you can usually sue a catalyzed Automobile filler there .

 

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Posted (edited)

Been a while, but...

After weighing the options of starting over with the building or using the foam board mockup as the base, I opted to go the latter direction. But how to dress it up? The building I'm thinking of (and the one that loosely serves as a pattern for this scale building) is a 1920's-ish wood frame building. That particular building has had vinyl siding and a new steel roof added fairly recently, but I wanted a more "rustic" look. So, chose to go with wood siding. 

Then the problem became how to do it. I'd planned to use individual strips of basswood, layering them much as you would with a 1:1 siding project like this. I have to admit I've never paid much attention to the MIdwest wood display at the hobby shop. As I was scanning over the various sizes and thicknesses of wood strips, I stumbled across lengths of basswood that were milled to resemble siding. Thinking that would save some time, I scanned through those and picked one that looked good to me. I bought six sheets, which ended up being almost the perfect amount, leaving me with several still-usable sections and one complete strip. 

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I left a bit bare at the bottom to represent the concrete foundation of the building. The edges of the wood are a bit rough in spots, but no matter- eventually I'll add some 90 degree moldings to the corners of the building, as well as door and window frames. There's a small bare spot on the opposite side of the building just beneath the peak of the roof- a "metal" panel will reside there for routing the chimney. You'll see another bare spot across the face of the building- this is where the Foreign Objects sign will sit. 

This was the first time I'd used Elmer's spray adhesive. I expected it to be kind of so-so, but it has quite a strong bond. I had to work quickly to reposition the front wood paneling, and I had just enough time to get it straight and level before the adhesive snugged up!

Edited by Chuck Most

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Nice shot of the building outdoors Chuck, and you've done a fine job with the overlap wood siding panels. Like you, I find that browsing through materials in the DIY store sometimes throws up materials that are just what I was looking for to add some feature to the diorama I am building. Your project is coming together nicely, and the whole process of putting it together as a concept idea is so satisfying, much like constucting a 1:1 building I would imagine.

David

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The last few nights have been devoted to fleshing out the lobby. 

I stumbled across some flocked paper in the craft section of M-57 Surplus in Chesaning, MI. They ended up with quite a bit of stock left over from when my local hobby shop closed up, so even though I usually go there for tools, I still haunt the craft aisles for interesting stuff. The brown pattern looked like carpeting to me... in fact, it might be intended for use as doll house carpeting. Whatever the case may be, I plunked down the fifty cents for it and cut a piece to fit once I got home. 

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After setting it into place and taking it in, I decided to go with it. This also set the tone for the "decor" of the lobby.

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Since I had plenty of the milled basswood left over from the outside, I chose to use some on the inside walls. The foam board walls were covered with some almond-colored card stock, and the basswood was cut to fit. After being sprayed with some Tamiya NATO Brown, more Elmer's spray adhesive was used to attach the wood to the walls. A restroom door facade, an aluminum-framed glass door, and windows will be added later, as well as a base board. The desk is built into the wall, it was built from various bits of Evergreen plastic stock. An office chair from the old Fujimi parts pack will sit behind it, and the desk itself will be cluttered with various doodads such as a laptop, a phone, and some paperwork. I'll also need to make up some customer seating... chairs, benches built into the window sills, a sofa... maybe a combination. Some wall ornamentation and a TV may also come into play at some point. 

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Speaking as a ' Foreign Object ' myself Chuck, the carpet material you have stumbled upon is absolutely right for the floor in your building. As you say. this will dictate the general theme for the rest of the decor. We don't have Elmer's spray adhesive here in England, and I am finding that contact adhesive can react badly or at best unpredictably with foam board, so I am on the look out for an alternative adhesive. Your lobby is coming on nicely Chuck.

One photo of the latest small addition to my diorama, the 1958 Vespa motor scooter...... alongside the largest vehicle in the scene... the big red bus.

David

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Nice! That reminds me that I have a Routemaster and a Vespa I need to get around to one of these days. I was worried about the spray adhesive reacting to the foam, but since the foam I'm using is paper lined there were no problems. I also stacked the deck in my favor by spraying the adhesive only to the back of the wood, rather than directly to the foam board. 

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4 hours ago, Chuck Most said:

Nice! That reminds me that I have a Routemaster and a Vespa I need to get around to one of these days. I was worried about the spray adhesive reacting to the foam, but since the foam I'm using is paper lined there were no problems. I also stacked the deck in my favor by spraying the adhesive only to the back of the wood, rather than directly to the foam board. 

I did a test shot on an offcut of foamboard to glue some DAS clay.  I used spray on carpet adhesive and it worked okay with no effect on the foam, and quick drying time.

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Posted (edited)

Made a little progress today.

I added edge moldings (whatever you'd call them) to the corners of the building to cover up where the shingles meet. I did a little finish work to the foundation and then sprayed the entire mess in Rustoleum Almond gloss. Window frames have yet to be finished, they will be done in the accent color... probably more NATO brown.

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I also did more work on the lobby. Please excuse the misaligned carpet- it's not yet glued down and is just kind of laying there for the photo. The desk was finished and painted to match the decor, and a couple of pictures were hung on the wall- one of a Rover Mini and a Subaru 360. I'm trying to drop clues of the building's past into the project. Prior to being home to Foreign Objects, the building's previous owner ran a dealership out of the premises, selling Austins from 1960 to 1997, then switching to Subaru after the Mini stopped being imported to the US. Yes... the Mini in the picture is too new for that period, but it gets the point across. :) The "paintings" came from two sources. The Mini came from the end panel of a Heller 1:43 scale Mini kit, while the Subaru came from the flyer included in an Arii 1:32 scale Owner's Club kit. They were mounted to .020" plastic sheet with the spray adhesive, then superglued to the wall. I cut the bottom and right side off of the Subaru image to hide a stock number printed on it, then cut down the Mini image to the same size. A TV will be mounted to the corner of the wall for customers in the lobby to watch, but I may squeeze in a couple more "paintings" or photos to decorate the wall. 

The restroom door and the two-way door that leads out into the shop were made from plastic sheet and strip, and the male/female restroom icon was hand drawn. I'll cut some windows from thin styrene sheet at some point, and add some general signage. 

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Edited by Chuck Most

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Your work on the lobby is great.... and elements such as the photos, the history of the building and business, doors and windows are all important aspects of the diorama.

Are you planning on adding figures to the scene, as well as vehicles? Finding the right figures in this scale is not easy, as you are probably aware already. The diorama builders in Germany seem to have a much wider choice of interesting poses, although usually in 1:35 scale which doesn't help us 1:24 scale builders. I have only just found one company, offering one Policeman figure, which is a rare diecast figure apparently.

David

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Last night, I got the building mounted to the base, and planted some shrubs under the lobby window. The lobby walls themselves were also installed, as was the restroom partition. 

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The earquake only slightly jostled things around. The strangest part was that somehow the air compressor ended up on the restroom roof.

I also stocked up a shelf with some photoreduced items and spare parts. The modified Honda radiator for the Mini is also plopped up there against an old Cragar box and some Subaru 360 hubcaps.

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I also found some old peg boards, and those were painted and some tools and other doodads were hung up on them. 

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Now I'm at the stage where stuff is getting put up in it's permanent location.

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Along the bathroom wall I added two of the peg boards, along with the sign left over from the previous building's owner. There's also a resin refrigerator stuck in the corner... I have no idea who cast it, or when, but I've had it for years and finally had a use for it. I also stuck a Keep Out sign on it for kicks. 

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A stack of used but still good tires are tucked into this corner, along with a safety cone I've also had lying around for years. 

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The other peg board was positioned near the opening for the side bay, while one shelving unit and a toolbox were set along the wall. Down in the bottom of the photo are a couple of loose details for the front desk- a phone from the Fujimi tools set, and a tissue box from a Fujimi accessories set. 

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You had an earthquake?...... Or was it an earquake? Seriously Chuck, the pegboards with the head gaskets are just brilliant. Now you must be seeing the real building at this advanced stage. Getting that air compressor down from up on the restroom roof  is going to take two guys heavy lifting I reckon!

David

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It was an earthquake induced by spinning the diorama around :)

After some thought, I figured (hahaha) the diorama could use a human element. So, here we have the shop owner... let's call him Carl Sullivan... leaning on the fender of the Mini, explaining what he did to swap the Honda 13B into the car to an interested... maybe the guy on the right is the Mini's owner? Or maybe he's just a curious onlooker who saw the car in the bay and wanted to ask some questions. I'll figure it all out later. 

It was odd- I was watching the classic Lucio Fulci horror movie "City Of The Living Dead" while I was cutting and shaping these scale humans, in a movie where horrible things happen to the characters. It made me think what an odd hobby this can be sometimes, and how good zombie movies used to be before that genre got played out. 

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Okay Chuck, so I understand the earthquake wasn't a 1:1 real world earthquake, but you ' cut and shaped these scale humans ' ? You mean scratch built figures?

I wish I could scuplt figures from any material, but it's never gonna happen.... I have to buy ready made humans, and Shapeways 3D printed seem to be the best.

I do like the story that's forming around the cars , the figures, the building and I found myself doing just the same with Hooper & Co, even beginning to imagine Osmond Rivers the Managing Director and Chief Draughtsman keeping a close eye on work in progress as I built the diorama. Withdrawing into a 1:24 scale world is probably my escape from reality.....

David

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Anglia105E said:

Okay Chuck, so I understand the earthquake wasn't a 1:1 real world earthquake, but you ' cut and shaped these scale humans ' ? You mean scratch built figures?

 

They're Fujimi figures, but I needed to cut a few pieces off and adjust to get the poses I wanted. I had to cut off the right guy's head and swap on another one so it wouldn't look like he was trying to do a somersault. So it was like this weird horror movie going on at the workbench for a bit. :D

Speaking of those guys, they're painted now.

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Going by the sign Foreign Objects has been around since 1978, I'm just going to arbitrarily say that Carl was in his mid-twenties when he started the business, which would put him in his mid 60's now, so I gave him grey hair, making him somewhat resemble an abnormally tall Leslie Nielsen. The guy on the right.... I'll call him Mike, because he sort of resembles my junior high biology teacher, got a goatee painted on, and some John Lennon sunglasses from a Detail Master photoetch sheet. I also gave him some "pinstripe" tats (taken from a Revell '50 Olds custom sheet) and painted his shirt to resemble a bowling shirt, because I guess bowling shirts are a thing now. The figures need a little touch up in places (check out the heel of Mike's right shoe, for one example) but considering I've never painted figures before... I'm reasonably pleased with how they came out. 

Edited by Chuck Most

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This is looking great. So many little details added, so many more I'm sure you will be adding. 

Makes me want to tackle one of these for myself.

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