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Premium Member

Posted - 02/18/2018 :  6:29:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Jim Sacco said to me at Springfield, "No one seems to do builds of my kits or other styrene kits." TWe see a lot more wood than styrene kits in build threads.

So I'm here to remedy that, with a build of City Classic's great "Company Houses" kit. You can buy one or a package with 3 (identical) houses. The fact these are small houses sold "in bulk" is perfect for constructing company owned housing for mineworkers, lumberjacks or even mill workers. An outhouse is included, it's a rare "big boss" that paid for running water and sewer lines to company housing.

Here's what comes in the kit (for 1 house)

The white sprue has the building walls including an addition that you can add to the side or back. (I'm not using the addition.) There are two 'roof' sprues per house plus a 'porch and steps' sprue.

I carefully cut the pieces from the sprues and then sand off the nubs with one of my favorite tools, self-stick sandpaper pressed onto a paint paddle. Be particularly careful to true up the left & right edges of the side pieces, since these butt against the front and back pieces. I then soak everything in a 10% solution of "Super Clean" (automotive cleaner from Wal-Mart), rinse and let air-dry thoroughly.

As is true for most boxes, I assemble a pair of Ls. On these kits, you want the foundations to align, and the side will be slightly offset from the trim on the front/back. I'm using magnetic corner clamps on the bottom (to get the foundation perfectly aligned.) I then run a bit of styrene cement (I'm using Testors liquid) along the inside edge, and adjust as necessary to make the side plumb against the front/back. Then I add the .060x.060 strip styrene as bracing to each corner. When the two Ls are dry, I glue them together to make the full box.

The next step is to prime and paint the wood. I'll cover that in a later post, I did one house already but I'm not 100% happy with how it came out.

I primed the roof with light grey, then I took a very dark blue-grey, added a bit of beige and a bit of water, and put a heavy wash/thin coat of paint. I let this dry with a bit of a slope "downhill" on the roof, this lets the color collect along the edges.

Here's my first house, it just needs the roof and chimney, and final painting/weathering. I'm going for a "never painted, well-weathered wood" effect.

Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

Country: USA | Posts: 7380


Premium Member

Posted - 02/18/2018 :  6:48:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nice build on a ubiquitous subject.

Keep going!

in Michigan

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Michael Hohn

Posted - 02/18/2018 :  7:03:32 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
We have a whole row of these on our club layout, which represents Appalachia in the 1950's.

They can look pretty grimy, like the one in your photo.


Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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Posted - 02/18/2018 :  9:33:12 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looking good Dave. These City Classic's Company Houses are on just about all layouts I know of, including mine. It is true that we never see one built on the forum. I guess the wooden structures seem to be a better interest for a how-to. They even appear in model books showing how to change there appearances.

Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast

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Premium Member

Posted - 02/18/2018 :  10:50:49 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

About a couple of years ago, I had one of these kits to put together. Upon opening the bag and spilling out its contents, I immediately put everything back in and sold the kit. It is nice to see someone such as yourself actually bring it to completion. I do like the color you have chosen. By looking at your picture of the front of the house, my first glance made me think it was wood.
You are doing such a fine job with this, and although I do now prefer wood over styrene, I will follow along with your build.


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Premium Member

Posted - 02/18/2018 :  11:34:30 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looks nice Dave.


"And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." A. Lincoln

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Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  06:42:26 AM  Show Profile  Visit sgtbob's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Looks very nice already.



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Bill Gill

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  09:38:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Dave, the color looks good and those kits do make very nice houses.

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Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  10:49:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Good way to bring attention to a part of the hobby for a huge number of modelers. Nice job!


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Posted - 02/19/2018 :  11:45:05 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Personally I've never been able to 'work' styrene very well. Not for the lack of trying. It's just the skill set is lacking. I've always admired the work that others have done. Mark Dalrymple's plastic bashes are just a wonder and a joy of imaginativeness (that's a mouthful )

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Jan Kirkwood
Crew Chief

Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  11:55:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Dave if I could finish those houses like you do I would build some....but I can not. Your house looks really great.


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Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  12:17:46 PM  Show Profile  Send Guff an AOL message  Reply with Quote
Nice job on the coloring...looking forward to more info on what you did to achieve the never painted well weathered look.

David Guffey

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Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  12:59:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Dave, great job on the unpainted wood look, but the question is “What technique did you use? This has always been aproblem with styrene kits for me and you seem to have solved it!

A Maine Expatriate living in the valley of Northern California - Modeling in HO.
David Stickney

Country: USA | Posts: 460 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  1:08:18 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by mecrr

Dave, great job on the unpainted wood look, but the question is “What technique did you use? This has always been aproblem with styrene kits for me and you seem to have solved it!

Stay tuned!


Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

Country: USA | Posts: 7380 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  6:14:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Day 2. I assembled the porch floor and roof. For the roof, I used the roof front (thin) piece to mark where the roof sides (trapezoid shaped pieces) should go. I used some .060x.060 styrene to reinforce the roof sides.

I assembled both porch roof and porch floor, and then used them to mark where they go on the front of the house. (Don't forget, there are 2 different door designs. Best to pick one as your official Front Door, where you'll install the porch.)

I added some styrene strip to provide a mounting point for both porch floor and porch roof.

(House on the right - I forgot to take a photo before I primed that house. You want to glue the locating strips in place before you prime.)

The porch steps are a pain in the posterior to assemble, so I constructed a jig.

Even with this jig, I still had some problems getting the treads to attach.

Anyway, when this was all done, I primed all the "wood" parts. For this house, I'm using a light grey paint.

This will provide a more aged/weathered look than the 'dark sand yellow' primer I used on the first structure. I'm using AK primer for this, but any good quality acrylic primer will work. A solvent paint (e.g. Tru-Color) used as a primer would also work.

Tomorrow, I'll show how I paint the styrene to look like wood (it's best to let the acrylic primer cure for a full day before starting this next step.)


Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

Edited by - deemery on 02/19/2018 6:44:54 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 7380 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/19/2018 :  8:03:25 PM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Looks good, Dave.

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