No announcement yet.

5 Strong St., Newburyport MA - HO, styrene

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • 5 Strong St., Newburyport MA - HO, styrene

    Until the B&M Eastern Route was abandoned through Newburyport, Strong St. was across the tracks from the depot. In my era, it was all residential except for a store at the corner of Merrimack St. There's space for five buildings, but one of them was an empty lot back then.

    Strong St. is next to the backdrop, running downhill from Washington to Merrimack. #5 is well below the tracks, just uphill of the area where the Eastern bought someone out about 1880 so they wouldn't have to build so much retaining wall.

  • #2
    Here are the photos I took in 2010. Alas, I didn't get the street side of the house. And because it dated to before the Civil War and had never been a rich man's house, it got demolished and replaced. Luckily, StreetView wasn't updated until a month or two ago. Unwisely, I just printed the images, and didn't save a screenshot.

    Uphill (RR west) side. What an assortment of windows!

    The downhill side is less complicated, but note that the 1st and 2nd floor windows don't match, and the attic windows are a bit different from the uphill side.

    And then there's the addition, and the mudroom, with the algae that come from near-perpetual shade. This is not art, not whimsy, this is 140 years next to the tracks in a city whose rather rigid social structure was intensively studied and written up in the "Yankee City" books.


    • #3
      James, too bad you didn’t use Google Maps to get a street view. Of course that would be if it's address was actually 5 Strong St.

      This building has great lines and lots of potential. That is one heck of a retaining wall.


      • #4
        Frank, the prototype Strong St. is only two blocks long, and this was indeed #5 until 2013. I did find it on Street View, my mistake was not grabbing a screen shot. This is a scan of a print:

        I guessed the height to the eaves as 16 feet, making it about 18' wide. I estimate front to back as about 40'. My 'lot' is only 31' deep, so I have to compress it that way, which reduces the height of the roof peak quite a bit:

        So far, I've reduced the complexity of several of the windows I've scratched. Nobody except me and maybe an AP evaluator will notice if the two rear windows on the uphill side are '6 over 6' instead of '12 over 12'. And since that starts with the compression, the rest is inevitable in a 'layout' rather than 'contest' model.


        • #5
          Step-by-step building a not-contest-quality window in HO styrene.

          Tools: Self-healing cutting mat, #11 hobby blade, 4" knife file, 6" machinist's square, MEK solvent cement, Touch-N-Flow capillary applicator for it, marble, metal or glass surface to glue on.

          Trim out the sides and then the top of the opening with HO 1x4". Fancy buildings of that era sometimes had wider trim, but we'll see that when I do something from High St.

          The sill is HO 1x6", notched to overlap the side trim (this may vary according to prototype). Pitch it outward 5-10 degrees to shed rain (I once employed a 'carpenter' who didn't know to do that; he also used a calculator to figure 10%).

          Finished window frame - The first sill I made fit better, but then it flew out of my tweezers :erm:

          I glue one set of HO 1x2" mullions across the back of the opening (not so impressive to the judges). .010 x .020 would be a little closer to prototype at 1.75" but I forgot to get any last time. Because I'm building this one partly open, I started with the horizontal mullions.

          Finished window as I lifted it off my marble slab with a knife blade.

          For contest work, make a window sash inside the frame from .010 x .015 styrene strip. Add a strip of .010 x .015 across a horizontal mullion for a double-hung window. Use a two-layer wall to hide the mullion ends and support interior trim etc.

          I assembled the downhill wall. The uphill wall will be trimmed to match and the walls put together once the last commercial window I want to use arrives. Thursday's order from Tichy arrived in Saturday's mail, so I hope to be painting this next week.


          • #6

            The prototype might not have been grand but it was venerable. Too bad it’s gone. Your model is looking very good.


            Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. James Baldwin


            • #7
              Looking good, James! Keep going!


              in Michigan


              • #8
                I'm with Mike and Pete, the model is looking really GOOD.




                • #9
                  Looks like you're having fun with the build. Nice looking model. At least we all know you can calculate 10% in your head.

                  Take the red pill


                  • #10
                    Thanks, Mike, Pete, Bob, Jim. My 2nd order of windows & styrene came in (Boy howdy, has the price of Evergreen clapboard increased in the past few years!). Last night I cut out the last opening and assembled the walls:

                    Next I'll make a 2nd floor and interior walls so I can light the building properly. The roof and chimneys will follow.

                    Once I install the remaining trim and commercial windows, I'll take a close look and putty any little glitches (there were two in my example window above).


                    • #11
                      James, are you sure this is Newburyport and not Salem? Gables, lots of clapboard and all that....

                      Very nice work, and this one should be a showpiece. An interior for the second floor would be a nice touch, too.

                      Have fun, and please keep the photos coming-- they're inspirational!


                      in Michigan


                      • #12
                        Very nice, I LOVE the New England style. I could paaark my caaar there. (reminds me of a joke about crows).

                        Bob (a displaced New Englander)



                        • #13
                          Very nice work, James. Thanks for explaining how you made the windows.

                          Flying is the 2nd greatest thrill known to man. Landing is the first.


                          • #14
                            [^]This is a very interesting build you have going James. That's going to be a great replica of a nostalgic house one doesn't see too often any more...Nice work'..



                            • #15
                              Thank you, Pete, Bob, George, Ted. Most New England port cities had crowded neighborhoods of wooden houses and commercial buildings like Salem. But many got burned or demolished to be replaced with masonry. Some survive in Portsmouth, Newburyport, Ipswich, etc. For a tour of what once was, search "HABS Newburyport" to find documentation from before the Rt. 1 bypass replaced 3-4 blocks of Newburyport right next to the area I'm modeling.

                              During yesterday's rain, I finished the trim boards and started the roof.

                              Initially, the interior keeps viewers from seeing through where they shouldn't be able to. It's removable so I have the option of finishing/detailing it later.

                              The 'whaleback' shape of the addition's roof may not have been original, but lacking records I'll model it. The shape presents a bit of a challenge - more on that in the next post.