Converting to hex

For many years, I’ve maintained a small stock of screws. They come in an array of shapes – countersunk, cheese-head, round-head, the oh-so-Canadian fillister-head, and hex. I never stocked the hex-headed ones because I didn’t have the appropriate tools to turn them. The trouble with most of these screws is that they have a simple […]


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Organizing the hobby shop

Somehow I seem to have collected an assortment of tiny packets of detail parts to rival many hobby shops. There are enough windows and doors to see me through a lifetime of model-making, parts I will never require for locomotives (diesel and steam) I’m unlikely to build, some potentially useful parts for cars, generic parts […]

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New shelves for the paint shop

Getting the raised floor for the paint shop opened opportunities for more storage. The wall opposite the spray booth contains the tank for a toilet, and so, it is built of 6″ studs. My plan is to fill in all the voids with shelves and storage. The first module, designed for spray cans and other […]

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Cricut masking

As I mentioned, I’m not finished with Morrisey Fernie and Michel #61. I’ve had another technique rattling around my head, looking for an opportunity to leap out on an unsuspecting model, and this little car was the perfect victim. Masked and painted insignia are all the rage in the aero modelling world these days. When […]

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Project Garage

You’ve gotta love foam core and hot glue. This combination is so quick and forgiving that you can test almost any idea with a ruler, a sharp knife and a few minutes of spare time. And so, when I found myself burying the modelling desk once again with pieces of 622, I decided to try […]

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More floor space

Our family of four lives in a modest 1800 square foot (170 m2) side split house. Every room does double duty. The rest of the family calls the train room “the rec room.” The heavy shop is tucked into an alcove of the laundry room, which is also our recycling centre and pantry and provides […]

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Evicting the anchor tenants

What’s on my workbench? Absolutely nothing for the first time in months! I finally banished those items that had been harbouring the mess. The pieces for 622 have been taped to some foamcore in preparation for painting, while the left-over etches have found a new home in the drawer with other model projects. The big […]

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Wall thickness experiments

I have optimistically put the 3D printer away so I could convert the heavy shop into a paint booth. It’s time to write up my findings as I’ve been exploring the boundaries of this new tool. In particular, I want to figure out how I can make thin-walled boxes like hopper cars. Starting with the […]

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Anchor Tenants

There seems to be a social-media contest for messiest workbench. Many modellers get chest-puffing macho affirmation by claiming that they can still produce amazing work even when the bottles of paint and boxes of partially finished kits are threatening to obliterate the remaining 6 square inches of usable work surface in a cataclysmic avalanche. I […]

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Mars Accuracy

I’ve noticed that the prints on my own 3D printer are snug compared to the same parts printed by Shapeways. Indeed, the sand dome and the ash pan wanted a little scraping where they connect with other parts. So, I made a 2 cm test cube to see what I could learn about the accuracy. […]

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