I have built a Faller kit for an industrial shredder. According to the Faller website (my translation from the German), this is
"a plant using using rotary mills to chop and shred waste containing metals, and featuring exhaust air treatment. Conveyor belts take the waste material through the different stages of treatment, including pre-sorting, screening, separation, compression and crushing".
So more of a scrap metals processor than a mere shredder, and for me quite interesting. It is ages since I built a kit the way the manufacturer expected me to and I really did intend to follow the instructions. In reality, I was working things out for myself quite early into the build.
Faller describes this as a beginner-level kit, but it seemed ‘engaging’ to me. You have to modify some parts and cut other parts to fit, and many of the parts meet together with simple butt joints. There is little of the interlocking you get with a Tamiya or an Airfix kit.
I get the feeling, this kit is a sort of manufacturer-designed kit bash. You get some different sprues sharing the same number, so a hunt for a part by number takes you through several alternatives until you find what you want. The part numbering does not relate to the build sequence either, so you cannot follow the traditional Airfix approach of beginning with part number 1 and attaching part 2 and so on.
There is nothing terribly difficult about the kit, but you need to keep an eye out for the location and alignment of parts as you go along. For example if you follow the instructions to fit the walkways, the handrails will not necessarily fit when you come to add them:
The instructions give you dimensions for trimming some parts, and I suspect the writer measured these from a completed model. This might have been the model on the lid of the box – if you study some of the joints between parts here you can aim to do better. I think it is best to work inwards for details like pipes and handrails, and then simply cut the remaining parts to fit the spaces. The printed instructions are a bit indistinct in places, and the version for download on the Faller website is clearer and easier to read.
The build took me a couple of gentle evenings. I ended up with five sub-assemblies, and it would have been more informative if I had laid these out for the photo. Instead, I rested everything together like this:
I brushed styrene solvent over the whole model to prepare the surfaces for painting. I am still not sure whether this actually helps. The long walkway (foreground in the photo above) took on a definite curve so I brushed more solvent on underneath and eventually got it straight when I glued it onto the rest of the model.
I gave the whole model two light coats of Halfords grey primer, and then painted the details with Humbrol and Revell enamels applied by brush. I used Revell acrylic for the yellow on the handrails because this seems to cover well for a yellow, but it has dried with a slightly lumpy look.
The model has no unified 'base' so you need to assemble it on a fairly flat surface. Nevertheless, the nature of the subject means any minor irregularities will disappear when you wed it onto the ground surface.
I finished the conveyor belts and some of the concrete parts using enamel paints with a dusting of talcum powder added to the wet paint. The large concrete parts holding the initial entry (‘input’) hopper had chinchilla dust scattered onto the wet paint, allowed to harden for several days and then mostly scraped off with an old wood chisel. This has left a slightly distressed and weathered sort of a look to these parts.
The design by Faller has quite a generous footprint, with inputs and outputs at opposite corners of the model. To begin with, I reversed the arrangement of the input hopper (nearest in the photo above) so both the inputs and outputs are on the same side, but still at opposite ends.
When I worked my way through different mock-ups for the layout I realised the original design would fit the space better, so a few weeks later I rebuilt the model with the input and output at opposite corners:
This change was easier than I expected. I made a new pipe to go across the top, because the original part was now too short. I am hoping, the model will make a good centrepiece for the 'vehicle dismantlers' on the layout. The input and output conveyors are still loose and I will fix these when the model goes onto the layout. I have included the Vauxhall Nova in the last photo to give scale, the car is 41 mm long.
This kit is Faller part number 130186.