Saturday, January 16, 2010

#008 04 Tybee Pier - Pier-severance Pays Off

I've spoken to many of the top modelers in the US about projects they have worked on and all of them will tell you that the made mistakes or things didn't work out as plan and they ripped it out and did it once or twice more.  I'm like that.  The hobby to me is about learning, not about being perfect.  A mistake breeds experience and knowledge.  And usually words that I can't say in front of my daughter.  So I roll up my sleeves and try again.  This time, success!

With a correctly printed drawing (the drawing did not have any errors) I began the large pier bent jig using the same procedure as before.

The drawing was cut out and mounted to a styrene sheet.

On the top of the jig I wrote the critical information about the jig using a fine point Sharpee marker.  It says what the jig is for, the layout it is associated with (actually the drawing) and the stock that is used to make the pier.  The color strip to the right is the height guage for scenicking the piling.  It shows where the hi and low tides are, the extent of moss and mussles and the like.  More on that later.

The jig was replicated quickly since I have already built one.  I'll keep the old one for an N scale layout one day.  Now, we test the jig.  Here I'm cutting the test sway braces.

This cup holds the long pier caps.  I'll use cups to keep the cut parts separate.

Here is the test bent in the new jig.  The measurments and the square of the pilings all are in spec. Good!  Let's make some sawdust!

Here is the previous jig.  Any fool could have sene that it didn't fit as the top of the pilings should have been close to the top of the pier.  Here is where being a rubber guager is a problem.  Because I work in N, HO, S and O I don't always put things into the right perspective.  A person that just models HO would have probably caught this early on.  Oh well.  Lesson learned.

Here si the new bent which is much larger.  The old bent would be perfect for N scle.  I'll see if Coalfinger wants a doc on his new layout.

The wood has dried and is nice and straight.  Perfect!  Let's build a pier!

We'll need over 75 pilings, so I won't have enough stained wood.  I'll rough up these and get a coat of paint on them.  My daughter has come to visit so we'll chat and watch a video together.

I'll need seven long caps.  These have to be paitned/weathered on all sides so I'll be carefull to dry brush these and not load them up with alcohol which could warp them.  These HAVE to be level.  These will need time to dry, so I'll work on the other pieces.

Using the Chopper I cut 28 sway braces and painted/stained them using the same technique I've used on the other wood.  These 1" x 9" boards are VERY thin and will warp quickly if they get too wet, so I dry brushed them.

My camera LOVES to change colors!  I used Scotch Tape to fasten them down to the counter and hit them with light coats of paints/stains.  Be sure to hit the ends!

Now for the pilings.  In all I need about 70 pilings so I set up the saw (dowels are too hard for razor blades to cut) and began to chop.  The TV helps when a monontanous task like this one needs to be done.  The chop saw made quick work of it.

Done!  The sway braces, the caps and the pilings are all cut.  Let's build some bents.

The pieces fit nicely and using just a little Elemer's Glue I begin to assemble the seven large bents.  While the jig dries, I go over to the pier wall and begin laying timber.

I put in about 10-12 more timbers and have built the wall up to the caps.  Those won't go on until the very last.  The clamps are helping to hold the timbers in place while they dry as they want to slide around a bit.

I finished three bents tonight (only two shown) and the look great and are very square. With a jig the job goes amazingly quick!  I guess there is about 10 more hours of work in the water pier scene.

The shop is a bit of a mess, but I don't mind as long as it not too cluttered.  A clean workspace makes for a clean model.  There are a lot of contradictions to that, however.  I did pick up and sweep up the sawdust tonight.  There is still a fourth assembly in the jig drying.  The good thing is that my shop has four workbench spaces to mess up!  Tomorrow I'll get up and finish the bents before church.

Ok, there is the third one.

Number four is drying.  I'll have to pull it out of the jig and put the sway braces on the back.  It is VERY strong!

Crap.  This one came out blurry.  I wanted to see how the timbers looked to the camera.  The camera is the BEST way to tell the quality of your model.  It won't lie and it shows every little blemish.  On long boards like this I had a hard time keeping glue from squeezing through the timbers.  My hopes were that it won't show and the picture would tell me.  Oh well...try again tomorrow.

Night all!

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