STRUCTURES
Back to Fatjack's Home Page This is a new department for Fatjack's Place. Dave is in the process of building a really unique Model Railroad. He is documenting the process with photos and comments and these will be posted and added to these listed departments as work progresses. Please check regularly. Track Plan
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Concept Scenery
History Structures - You are here
Timetable-All Rules

Operation

Locomotives Finished Layout
Rolling Stock Benchwork
Miscellaneous Back to Model Railroad Intro Page Trackwork
and
SCLN&TC
Southern Colorado Land Navigation & Transfer Co.

SCROLL DOWN FOR PICTURES OF STRUCTURES WITH CAPTIONS

 

For the most part, the structures I’m going to use are craftsman kits.  Most are laser cut wood kits, and for variety I also have some styrene, resin, and even Hydrocal kits.  I don’t particularly like resin or Hydrocal kits, but these are an excellent source for brick buildings.  I needed some brick buildings so everything would not be wood structures.  Hydrocal kits are my least favorite because they are difficult to modify due to chipping, breaking, etc.  I love laser cut wood kits, but I also have one or two vintage structure kits that are wood, but not laser cut, which of course means a lot more work in building them.

For me, building the structure kits is very time consuming, so it’s going to be quite some time before I ever get all of them finished.  So what I decided to do is build structures as needed in order to finish the scenery in any given area.

Even though I’m a detail modeler, and I also appreciate the detail of structure interiors, I don’t model the interiors.  For one thing, it’s very time consuming and also adds expense to the railroad.  So I simply paint the inside of the window glazing gloss black, or put a gloss black panel behind the window.  I do plan on putting adequate detailing around the exterior of the structures.

I don’t do much scratchbuilding, but I am an old kitbasher.  It’s not that I can’t scratchbuild or don’t know how, it’s just that I like kits and kitbashing.  This is good because many of my structures need some adjustments to fit the space where they go, and this can range from minor to major changes.

These structures will of course have more character when they are in place.

D. A. Bontrager:  Owner

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Chugwater Station - This is a Stoney Creek Designs kit.  It’s a very well designed kit and very detailed.  It took me over three weeks to build it – I never said I was a fast builder.  Most of the separate details came with the kit, plus I added some.  This kit was not modified.

Chugwater Station Details - These are the signs at the rear entrance of the station.  I make many of my own signs.

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Chugwater Station Outhouse & Coal Shed - This 2-stall (men & women) outhouse and adjoining coal shed will go near the station.  Notice the collection of license plates that I made at the end of the coal shed – neat.

 
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The Frisco Hotel (Westcliffe) - This started out as a Downtown Deco Hydrocal kit of a derelict hotel on skid row.  With numerous modifications I made it into a “main street” hotel.  This goes in Westcliffe, and I had room for a tall structure, but not much room for a wide structure, so this hotel is perfect.  I added quite a bit of detail items and also made my own signs and the clock.  I made it shorter, but don’t remember if I made it more narrow or not.  The original kit only had several side windows, so I added all of the other windows using Grandt Line details.  With Hydrocal this was not easy to modify, but it turned out really nice.

2-Story Outhouse (Chugwater) - This is a whimsical laser cut kit by Wild West Models.  Notice on the end an advertising sign for Chief Hosa Smoke Shop.  I put an appropriate figure inside.  Also notice the sign above the bottom door, “Politicians.”

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Bubba’s Diner (Westcliffe)

This was a fun kitbash.  It started out as a Bachmann coach.  Most coach diners are built from standard gauge cars, but my space is at a premium, so I used a narrow gauge coach.  I made all of the signs and put a few figures inside.  When I started it I knew what I wanted, but didn’t have any plans on exactly how I was going to accomplish my goals, so the whole project was designed as it was built.

Bubba’s Diner Signs

I made the frame for the Blue Plate Specials sign, and also the sign.

Bubba’s Diner Rear - I scratchbuilt the kitchen shed behind the coach.  The cooler is a resin kit.  These two details add more character to the diner.  When it’s in place there will be more details added, such as trash cans.

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Chief Hosa Smoke Shop (Westcliffe)

This started out as a laser cut pool hall by Evergreen Hill Designs.  The overall size was not modified, but I didn’t put in the interior and I flipped the large front windows.  The design of the kit wasn’t as good as the Stoney Creek Station, but it came together pretty good.  Using advertising signs that I got off the internet, I made all of the signs.  The wooden Indian is from Grandt Line.  The number of advertising signs is accurate for a smoke shop owned by Indians.  If you have ever seen such a place you know what I mean.  I made the side walkway porch leaning.  I’m not sure if that was a good idea or not, but after I did it I couldn’t change it, but I think it looks okay.

Chief Hosa Smoke Shop

Notice the advertising sign for the Southern Colorado Land Navigation & Transfer Co.  This is cool.

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The Pink Lady Hotel (Westcliffe)

This is a scratchbuilt structure using styrene components by DPM.  The space where this is going to go is very tight, so it had to be narrow.  To accentuate the narrow width I made it tall, and am glad I did as it turned out really neat.  The Madam is a figure by Aardvark Aarts.  If you read the history of the SCLN&TC in my timetable you know that Westcliffe was a wild and woolly town and the cowboys had to have a place to go for a good time when they came to town.  At the rear of the hotel I made the cans and paper trash in the trash can.

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Al’s Tincup Diner (Westcliffe)

This is a much modified resin kit by the modern DPM.  DPM is now owned by Woodland Scenics and all of their kits are now resin instead of styrene.  The diner was made more narrow; again, it had to be due to the limited space where it’s going to go.  I pretty much scratchbuilt the entire rear wall.  I’m actually not completely finished with this yet as I need to add some more details.  I named this diner after my dad, who loved diners.

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The Pig’s Ear Saloon (Westcliffe)

The Pig’s Ear Saloon was an inexpensive plastic kit.  It went together easy and overall is a good looking structure.  I did spend some time with it to get it to look like what I wanted.  The original side walls had double freight doors tooled in on both sides, which would not have looked right for a saloon, so I cut them out and put in brick fillers.  I also scratchbuilt the front porch and roof, which really added some nice character to the structure.  All of the stones were individually painted.  This took some time but I believe the results turned out good.  If you read my timetable you know that The Pig’s Ear Saloon is owned by P. I. Goodson, nickname “PIG”.

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Westcliffe Station

Westcliffe Station had to be small due to the space I have for it.  It’s going to be at the foot of Tincup Mt. and at the end of Frisco Canyon, and there also will be a retaining wall behind it.  This Banta Models kit was the perfect size.  This kit is a combination of laser cut wood and Hydrocal.  I built the station without modifications, but the platform was modified to fit my space and was also lowered.

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Westcliffe Station Signs

This Bear Whiz Beer sign has always been one of my favorite signs, so I made one from an image I got off the internet.  The Bontrager Truck Service sign on the rear of the shed is a tribute to my dad’s trucking company.  Dad was in the trucking business in 1950, but BTS did not come into existence until 1955, but it works here just fine.  I made the Do Not Enter and Use Other Door signs on the entrance side of the shed.

 

The Structure Dept. is an ongoing work in progress.  I have many more structures to build and will put them here as I get them finished.