Monday, April 23, 2018

Modeling Monday: Route 15 Overpass - Castings Reveal!

So, as things typically happen lately, I got distracted by work/life and am only just now getting around to sharing the result of the castings I poured over a week ago. And this time, I actually had enough room on my iPhone to shoot a proper video. Well - I don't know how "proper" but at least it didn't get cut off this time. . .

I'll never become a YouTuber, but let me know if you've been enjoying the videos and/or finding them helpful. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video's gotta be worth even more. And it saves a lot of typing :^) And - bonus! - you actually get to see in kinda-real-time how things are working (or not - that's the joy of a "live" video).

But this is a blog after all, so here are some detail shots of the castings that I got. I don't know if I had beginner's luck or not, but I think they came out really well.

Unfortunately, there must have been some bubbling along a few of the girder edges though. You can see above what look like "chips" that broke off. Nope - that's how the casting came out. Should be a relatively simple matter of filling them in with either putty or strip styrene. I'll letcha know (or I might not even bother, since these will literally be painted black and put under a bridge back next to the backdrop...)

Speaking of bubbles...

Remember that beginner's luck I mentioned? Well, it wore off a bit with the second pour I did. My main mistake here was not overfilling the mold with the resin pour. As a result a lot of air - and thus, bubbles - got trapped under the acetate.  Even WORSE - I tried to fix things by lifting the acetate up and smoothing the bubbles out. Big Mistake - that really just made things worse and created more bubbles. I would have been better off just placing the acetate,leaving it alone, and seeing what I ended up with, come what may.

Note to self: Always overfill the mold.

The beginner's luck didn't totally leave though, cuz the castings ended up ok. Yeah, there are a lot of voids, but they're either on the back (where they won't be seen) or actually in the casting (where they really won't be seen - especially after they're painted).

So, as I mentioned on the video, turns out I really only need two sets of girders in addition to the masters in order to have enough for the Rt. 15 overpass. But for that plan to work, I needed to be able to free the masters . . .

If you can remember waaaaay back when I first started this a couple weeks ago, I mentioned that I used some Aileen's to glue the masters onto the base of the foamcore box. Well, while it did take a bit more time than I expected, a soak in water did eventually allow me to carefully peel them off.

And there wasn't even any residue! Certainly no damage to the masters, which of course is awesome. I'll be sure to wash all the pieces thoroughly before painting though.

And that's it! At least for now, my resin casting efforts are going to take a back seat while I focus on some other things. Busy days at work will be ending in a few weeks and I've been immersed in shopping for a new car (mine just turned 180k and the Missus' car just turn 245k!). Unfortunately, my FIL is still in the hospital, but doing ok all things considered. It's just a long road. Thanks for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Before I do anything else though, I really REALLY need to clean up this mess %^)
Thanks to all of you that attended the NMRA Nutmeg Division meeting yesterday and hung around for my presentation on Operating the Valley Line. You were a great audience and I got some good feedback that'll help me improve it for the upcoming NEPROTO Meet. Hope to see you there!


  1. "I really REALLY need to clean up this mess %^)"

    Why? Looks good to me. :>)

    Castings look great!

  2. Hello! Long time lurker, etc. :)

    I would like to toss in $.02 of suggestion, please ignore if you already know. :)

    A small hand-massager pressed against the master mould will provide the vibration/kick needed to bring all air bubbles to the surface, where you can then finish the pour. It's a cheap solution to the problem (the more expensive is a vibrating platform).


    1. Hi Brian and thanks so much for the suggestion! I'm definitely going to try this out next time I make some castings. Looks like a great tip - I wonder whether my hand-held orbital sander would work the same way? :^)

      Thanks again for the comment and letting me know you're out there. I totally understand lurking, but it's cool to know there's folks listening in :^)