Gisby earned £75
in eM-4 credit


REX Auto Parts
A Plasticville Conversion
by Gisby

There's something very satisfying about modifying models with a hammer and anvil. This project gave me the opportunity.

The first thing I needed was a bunch of flattened cars.

I scouted garage sales, and managed to pick up a bunch at a very reasonable price. I found Majorette to be the most reasonably-priced diecssts of decent quality, at about .70 each. (There are a lot of cheap, small, and ugly diecasts out there, but they will just look bad.)

Many folk use 1/43 diecasts for their 28mm cars, but as piled-up wrecks, the 1/64 stuff looks fine.

I took my new toys, and put them on the anvil. With deft strokes I flattened them: If they splayed, I turned them and whanged 'em back to their original width. If they broke, great! The experience was very liberating.

I hot-glued them together in stacks of three, and set them aside.

I then took craft sticks and scored them down the centre. Each was cut into two sections (The ends thrown away) and the top notched. These were glued into lengths of fence, and these fences were glued onto a black-painted piece of Sintra.

The fence framework was more craft sticks, and the fence posts cut from chopsticks.

The front and rear gates were made as described left, and mounted on the fence.

The office was built from more craft sticks, again scored to form two planks. The window was framed with planks cut from craftwood. The door is hinged, and opens.

The roof is the only Plasticville piece: A 60mm wide section of a Freight Platform roof. The chimney is a section of pick-up stick.

The office was spray-painted white, the roof painted grey. The office and fences were weathered with 'magic wash' in browns & black.

N.B. When I 'washed' the fences, the wood swelled. and actually buckled boards off the fence. The front gates originally met at the centre of the opening, but now they overlap. I actually think it improves them..

Once everything had dried, I arranged the piles of cars to find a layout that I liked. I found one that I liked, removed the cars, and was unable to duplicate it later. Annoying AND frustrating

This was the one I finally decided upon. I wanted a feeling of claustrophobia, and a tight maze-like feel..

The centre has some good firing positions coveriing the front, and the twisting path offers a good escape route, but will be a choke point for a large group of pursuers.

I hot-glued the office into place, then the stacks, starting at the front.

I spread white glue at and under the stack edges, and sprinkled sand to simulate scatter & crud that gets pushed to the side of the paths.

There is greenery or bushes in various spots along the paths and in corners.

I then took grey, black, rust, and, khaki paints, and dusted the whole piece from above, to give a grimy, rusty feel to everything.

The downside is that the photos taken from above look sort of indistinct as a result.

I printed the signs and glued them to thin plastic (ironically, a 'Beware of the Dog' sign from a dollar store) and attached them to the gates. The gates display 'closed' and warning signs when they are closed, but different signs are visible when they are open. The back gate just has the warning signs.

Making a chain-link gate.

1. Make a 3-sided frame the size of your gate, with horizontal eye-rings at each end.

2. Make a brace from a length of wire with a ring at each end. Crimp the rings closed and glue in place.

3. Glue your chain mesh onto the frame. I use fine aluminum mesh from Michael's, intended for papier-mache armatures.

4. Mount the gate on a staple-shaped piece of wire inserted into holes drilled in your wall/fence.

The rear gate has a stop to keep it from swinging inward.

The front gates have their hinges on the front of the fence so they open flush against the front wall.

NOTE ON SCALE: This lot is much smaller than it should be: There is no way to pile up the cars (no lift or crane), and the aisles are too narrow for any machinery to pass.

It would be better if it was twice the size, and for a demo game, a maze of piled cars covering the table would be a LOT of fun, and would look great.