The Gun Shop
by Gisby

A necessary part of any Wild West Town is a gun shop. You need to be able to buy more and bigger guns, and the ammunition to use 'em.

This is the latest of my 'Candy House' conversions: It represents a small shop, with two small apartments above. (They seem very small, and they are, but they are the same size as actual Victorian rooming house rooms.)

It provides good shooting positions, but has one mighty blind side.

It's based on a building I saw on the cover of a book about Ghost Towns. Until then, I felt the floor plan was too small for a multi-storey design, but apparently not.

Looking through the book, I was surprised to see that many false fronts were not used as business signs: They were merely fashionable, and often had false windows painted on them to mke the buildings appear more impressive..

It's made the same as my other buildings: A frame is made from 8 popsicle sticks, and the walls are planked to them. The roof is trimmed as needed to clear the false front, and openings are left for doors and windows.

The walkway around the 'Candy House' base was removed on 3 sides, and one section was used to widen the front walkway.

The staircase is made from popsicle sticks, the railing from bamboo skewers. It was a pain to make.

Opening doors were added, on wire hinges.

Aside from the plastic base and roof, all materials are craft sticks, coffee stirrers, etc.

The building could have been made just as easily without the 'Candy House' parts, but part of the fun was to see what I could do with the plastic parts.

There were some differences to this design: There were to be two floors, and an external staircase.

The second floor also required supports for the second floor, and the walkway was extended to one side to accommodate the stairway, using a section of the walkway cut off earlier.

The interior walls and floor are cardboard. The interior doors are open: I felt that making opening doors would be more trouble than it was worth.

I made the signs with Photoshop: The Colt pistol was a piece of clip art, all else is fonts.

(BTW, I didn't know then if Colt Arms was actually In Chicago or not. It looked good. Rest assured, I've had plenty of emails in the meantime.)

Aside from the business sign and the ads, there are hand lettered notices: "Room for rent" "No tick" and "Bad Dawg inside" posted on the door.

All in all, I'm pleased with the results, and I look forward to my next Old West game.

These are the photos from the original March 2000 article, before I framed the windows: A different camera makes a big difference.