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cutting scalescenes windows out in N gauge - what's the best way


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Is it just me that's still getting the hang of this but every time I try and cut out a scalescenes N gauge kit's windows I seem to drag the paper slightly and rip the thin parts of the window frames.

 

I've taken to putting a strip of window frame cut from the other window option across, glued to the back of the transparent sheet which is currently doing the job on grubby railway buildings but would like to neaten things up when I start on shop fronts.

 

anyone got any advice on how they cope with these fiddley bits?

 

thanks.

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Obviousness I guess but you need a new blade (don't use the Olfa - Xacto or scalpel are better) for that job. I've done them in 4mm and they're fiddly enough in that scale. Try gluing the paper to 0.020" plastic sheet (0.010" might be more appropriate for N) before cutting.

 

John

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The life of the last mm or two of any blade is predicated by what you are cutting and the surface you are cutting it on. There is no substitute for a cutting mat and for the highest precision cuts use a steel rule on top.

 

Insert the knife at one corner and run slowly along the line until you are about 1mm from the next corner. If you are in the least bit worried about the window frame then cut away from that. When you have cut all four lines then ease the blade into the 1mm and cut up to the corner.

 

Change the blade every three or four cuts. I have found that the craft knives with snap off blades are the most economic to use although I find the smaller ones a bit tricky to use successfully on thin paper.

 

Never build a Scalescenes kit on less than 80GSM paper. If it isn't specified on the paper packet go to Smiths and raid their paper supplies. Expensive but very good. They also do 120GSM paper which is a bit like vellum. All their papers are ink jet friendly but you will find that the intensity of colours will tend to crinkle thinner paper.

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I'm working on a green cutting mat, the blade could perhaps do with changing round on the Stanley and perhaps a cheaper knife for card middling if I'm going to get through blades that quick.

 

The issue is when cutting a pane of glass in a multi pane window, the first pane is fine, the first cut of the second pane is fine, the second cut from that corner where it meets the earlier cut is the problem.

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If you keep a whetstone handy, you can put the edge back on your scalpel blade very quickly with just a few strokes and a bit of spit!

I have two blades that I've used for the last few models, a craft knife for heavy work and a scalpel for delicate work.

I just sharpen them before I use them and rehone them if they lose their edge.

 

I find it easier than replacing the blades!

 

Chris

Black Hat

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I'm working on a green cutting mat, the blade could perhaps do with changing round on the Stanley and perhaps a cheaper knife for card middling if I'm going to get through blades that quick.

 

 

I also model in N and have found that it's best to keep the blade as low to the paper as possible. I think this would be very difficult to do with a Stanley knife as they can be quite bulky and the angle of the blade isn't ideal. I use a knife like this one (http://www.kerricraft.co.uk/shop/index.php?_a=viewProd&productId=231) and change the blade regularly. Packs of 20 replacement blades from my local model shop, are relatively cheap and last me ages.

 

Paul47

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Have a look here...

http://www.scalpelsandblades.co.uk/

 

A No.3 and a No.4 handle with with a different blade in each one will be 100% better than a bulky Stanley knife.

The ACM range also has chisel shaped blades which might help you.

 

Might seem overkill but I have a No.3,and a No.4 scalpel,two different size ACM handles with chisel type blades fitted on the go all the time I'm cutting things out.

 

Allan

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In a Dutch railway magazine I read the following suggestion: use ivory cardboard for windows and doors.

In the Netherlands you can buy large sheets of it. I think you can use it for printing, although I never tried it.

It seems you can cut windows and doors better this way.

Don't know if you can buy this kind of card board in the UK.

I will try it for my OO gauge windows.

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In this months Railway modler there was a advert for this company http://www.truetexture.co.uk/ ( Edit just relised they only seem to do oo/Ho) .ive looked at site they have ready printed windows, door and brick papers ,but may be a bit pricey .for me at moment anyway, but looks like a good product.

 

Ive had similar problems cutting out the thin sashes,some papers worse than others,but a new blade or sharpened one helps.I also print windows on matt photo paper and cut out all the pains before the window.

Ive found for myself,cutting free hand rather than using a streight edge helps unless a large opening.

 

I know the n gauge ones small, i did a small one up for someone else and found it very hard going with the supplied windows,i ended up using some of the bigger panes from a scalescene kit to replace them.

 

Tel

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I have used the Brassmasters etched 4mm scale windows designed for Scalescenes buildings. Much superior to paper frames. They do cost a bit though. Also, check Scale Link, GTbuildingsmodels and Modelexmodelraiways. Can't recall seeing stuff for N, but then again I've never had a reason to look.

 

John

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My tips are, very sharp fine blade, dont apply to much pressure, let the blade do the work, I cut freehand but use a steel rule close to where I am cutting to support the surrounding area, which helps stop the dragging you are experiencing.

 

I also use a sharpening stone to help prolong the life of my blades, I use two different X-acto handles and blades and the small and large snap off type knives, I find the steel stanley knife to only be useful on materials such as 3mm mdf or hardboard.

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Is it just me that's still getting the hang of this but every time I try and cut out a scalescenes N gauge kit's windows I seem to drag the paper slightly and rip the thin parts of the window frames.

 

I've taken to putting a strip of window frame cut from the other window option across, glued to the back of the transparent sheet which is currently doing the job on grubby railway buildings but would like to neaten things up when I start on shop fronts.

 

anyone got any advice on how they cope with these fiddley bits?

 

thanks.

 

Sorry, a bit late to this...

 

I suggest you 'Zoom' in 'Tools' on the PDF download until the window in question fills most of the screen and then print onto A4 self adhesive paper by selecting 'Print current view'. Try to print along one end of the paper, so that you can cut off the bit/strip with window/s on and start again from a square edge. [the paper does not have to be A4 size to print on, as long as the end is square]

 

Then stick this to your glazing medium and you will be able to use a sharp blade cut out the window panes by running the blade either side of the glazing bar, guided by a steel rule.

 

THERE IS NO NEED to stop the cut at the intersection of each glazing bar, the microscopic square at their union stays in place as you peel off the tiny 'panes' with sharp tweezers to reveal the glazing underneath.

 

Whilst I am primarily a 1/76th modeller, herewith a picture of some GWR steel-framed engine shed windows, the glazing bars being about 1" in width. Here they are 1pt [0.357mm] wide and I doubt whether the bars you are modelling will need to be any finer?

 

I hope this helps you and anyone else, if you can't get A4 self adhesive paper, plenty of good sound advice has been given above.

 

post-106-0-72870400-1321805565_thumb.jpg

 

Good luck!

 

 

 

Doug

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  • 3 weeks later...

In one of the MRJ articles dedicated to card buildings (I think it was by Barry Norman), it was said that one should run liquid superglue along the edges of the cut cardboard/paper, let dry and then trim them up and neaten them without the edges fraying.

 

I've tried this technique once or twice and it does help make for neat edges, in one or two cases I coated the paper with the superglue before I cut it out and it did minimise ragged edges

 

the only drawback is that you need something with which to apply the light coating of the superglue and a cocktail stick doesn't really do the job that well (you go through an AWFUL lot of cheap brushes this way...)

 

F

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Sorry, a bit late to this...

 

I suggest you 'Zoom' in 'Tools' on the PDF download until the window in question fills most of the screen and then print onto A4 self adhesive paper by selecting 'Print current view'. Try to print along one end of the paper, so that you can cut off the bit/strip with window/s on and start again from a square edge. [the paper does not have to be A4 size to print on, as long as the end is square]

 

Then stick this to your glazing medium and you will be able to use a sharp blade cut out the window panes by running the blade either side of the glazing bar, guided by a steel rule.

 

THERE IS NO NEED to stop the cut at the intersection of each glazing bar, the microscopic square at their union stays in place as you peel off the tiny 'panes' with sharp tweezers to reveal the glazing underneath.

 

Whilst I am primarily a 1/76th modeller, herewith a picture of some GWR steel-framed engine shed windows, the glazing bars being about 1" in width. Here they are 1pt [0.357mm] wide and I doubt whether the bars you are modelling will need to be any finer?

 

I hope this helps you and anyone else, if you can't get A4 self adhesive paper, plenty of good sound advice has been given above.

 

post-106-0-72870400-1321805565_thumb.jpg

 

Good luck!

 

 

 

Doug

 

Another Brilliant tip there Doug.

Ive just tryed this method on the engine shed windows ive just done, works a treat, am impressed.Much better than trying to cut out fiddly little squares

.I tryed it on some self adhesive address lable i had to hand ,as only two windows to do.Ive since ordered some A4 sheet of the stuff now as will be making future windows this way. The glazing bars stay streight unlike when i cut out indevidual panes and you don't get glue where you dont want it.

 

Ive sourced 50 A4 sheets off a ebay company for just £3.60 post free !

 

Tel

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