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Metcalfe Buildings, as useful as they are, suffer from folding corners and exposed bare card, which can spoil their appearance. Colouring with markers never really works and I have even tried matching stone or brick motor lines with a fine Rotring pen and very small paintbrush, but the cut card is so porous it bleeds and spoils the effect.

This method, although a bit fiddly works and in my opinion gives an even better finish than just wrapping around corners with brick papers.

This was used on the Stone Single Track Engine Shed PO332, but I have used it on the brick Brewery Building with the same success.

One proviso is because in some cases you are reducing the size of a wall, you may have to adjust the inner floors or other pieces that may not line up correctly after making the cuts shown.

 

The first two photos show the normal Metcalfe corner and the second shows the results of my attempt.

 

Hopefully the photos show the method, but here is a brief description.

 

1. Cut the two pieces that are normally folded.

 

2. Decide which piece is to form the lip and make a fine cut with a scalpel approx 1mm in from the edge on the back of piece (not the printed side).

 

3. Now carefully lift the grey card along the cut, gradually removing the layers until you are just about left with the printed paper. Try not to cut right the way through. I have found pushing a metal ruler along the cut produces the best result, as it removes any furry bits.

 

4. Fig 1 & 2 shows what you are trying to achieve.

Now apply your glue of choice (I use Rocket Card Glue as it sticks really quick) along the edge and using a block of wood as a right angle, position and hold in place until set.

 

So you should end up with a much better result than the standard method.

 

Happy gluing.

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I built a couple of Metcalfe kits for my Dad, when you pop the pieces out from the card frames there is usally a narrow strip of the printed texture left on the frame, i have used that to fill the corners.

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Thats a neat idea. I have just built a Metcalfe signalbox and don't like the card edges.

 

Your method reminds me of 'dithering' which we used many years ago when compiling air photograph mosaics. The idea was to get the top piece of paper as thin as possible near the overlap edge.

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Although this is a good idea, does it make building the model harder. Once you start messing like this surely the rest of the parts no longer fit as the model is now smaller than it should be.

 

I must say that the idea it self is brilliant and makes the kits look so much better. I assume that the same can be done on the superquick card kits.

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Although this is a good idea, does it make building the model harder. Once you start messing like this surely the rest of the parts no longer fit as the model is now smaller than it should be.

 

I must say that the idea it self is brilliant and makes the kits look so much better. I assume that the same can be done on the superquick card kits.

Hadn't thought of that! 

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I did add a note pointing out this will effect the overall size, but in all the buildings I have built it only really means taking 1mm - 1.5mm off the internal floors. The small engine shed has no internal floors so makes no difference.

 

These kits are fine if you want a quick fix, but it means you do not have anything unique. I use them as an alternative to building from scratch i.e. use the basic shape and frame and enhance as much as possible to make it better.

 

Of course you can just colour the edges, stick a drain pipe on the corner (not very prototypical) or fill in with extra card (ending up with two cut lines to hide), everyone has their own favourite solution, tried some of these myself, but I know which i prefer.

 

The other thing I do not like about Metcalfe kits, are the printed roofs, I think every single kit I have bought has the same bland colour roof, which I always cover with Scalescenes Slates or Tiles.

 

Here's a pic (work in progress) showing hidden corners, Scalescenes Tiles and Flashings, added gutters and drain pipes, scratch built smoke hood covers, lamp, and bell box, with doors converted to working hinges (with maybe a view to solenoid operation)

 

Now working on internal details and inspection pit, etc 

 

And I need to weather those window frames!

 

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That is so much better than the standard Metcalfe kit, I have a couple that were given as gifts, but upto this point I had no plans on using them as they would look so out of place when mixed with my scratch builds, I now feel a plan coming on.

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Metcalfe models just cry out to be touched up, a good halfway house to scratch building. They are useful to gauge scale/size when you are starting scratching, though I think they are about 5% too small. The link below shows how different they can be made to look, even covering the roofs with some different paper makes a huge difference, as we see proportionaltely more roof in a model railway than we do in real life.

 

http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/39980-metcalfe-kits/

 

 

Doug

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This device may help with the tricky business of cutting 'just so deep' along that edge line. You just need to rob a 13amp 3 pin plug of its earth pin! If you are left handed cut the saw slot [with an Exacto razor saw] across the opposite diagonal. Make sure the head of the screw is nicely smooth and snag-free so it slides nicely along a straight edge.

 

 

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Good luck,

 

Doug

 

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Edited by Chubber
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  • 5 years later...
On 23/12/2014 at 13:45, Chubber said:

This device may help with the tricky business of cutting 'just so deep' along that edge line. You just need to rob a 13amp 3 pin plug of its earth pin! If you are left handed cut the saw slot [with an Exacto razor saw] across the opposite diagonal. Make sure the head of the screw is nicely smooth and snag-free so it slides nicely along a straight edge.

 

post-106-0-62998400-1334767181.jpg

 

Good luck,

 

Doug

 

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Thanks, Doug (Chubbers), for showing your controlled depth cutting gimcrank - I like your "necessity is the mother of all invention" solution. I'm sure there are probably commercial products that do the same, but far more expensively! I am inspired to make one up for myself now!

 

This may be an old thread but what a good solution to Metcalfe corners! I have a few old Metcalfe kits that may now be pressed into service if I can utilise this method. I had been thinking of "reskinning" them with Scalescenes papers, but as mentioned before brick courses don't quite line up.

 

My biggest regret was chopping up the old brewery kit to create a longer, low relief building without scanning it first to preserve the original design. Having reduced it to a stack of "parts" to make this hybrid structure, I cannot go back to the original design. A shame, as this kit is now discontinued! I wonder if anyone on RMWeb scanned it?

 

Steve S

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The modelling press carried an article a few years back that suggested photocopying the Metcalfe sheets which can then be used to "skin" the card parts to hide the corners on assembly. IIRC the article suggested you scale up the copies by 2-3% to offset the "shrinkage" when they were wrapped around the outside of the corners. Never tried it so don't know how well this works. 

 

Like others here, I have considered using the Metcalfe kits as templates to cut parts from plasticard or Wills sheets to result in a more life-like model.

 

Steve

 

Edited by sjp23480
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Hullo Stevey,

 

Indeed I posted some 10 years ago that as a matter of course I always scan a M'calfe model before I start it in case I need a 'patch' to repair/conceal an inevitable coc%-up.

 

If you are referring to Kit PO229, Brewery, circa 2003, I have one, complete, unbuilt, which has only been opened to scan a few of the shapes for another build. If you p.m. me I'm sure we can come to a reasonable agreement.

 

Douglas

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  • 2 weeks later...

So, I have been busy using this corner technique to tidy up a small terraced house for my Inglenook layout - it was one of a pair, but I cut them in half to make two buildings, as both will have one end against the backscene!  And of course I did not scan them as the terraced house kits are still available.  

 

What I failed to remember was that this kit is the same vintage as the pub and is also therefore long discontinued!  Colour me stupid.

 

So, before I start the pub, scanning will take place!

 

Hours of frustration fun!

 

Steve

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