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A5 sized Z Shorty microlayout


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It happend that a friend pointed out to me the small printable Buildings by Brother quite at the same time as Rokuhan's Z Shorties started to become real. Using both together on a layout was the natural conclusion, so I started this project, which I'm confident I can 'finish' this year.


This is the 1/300 scale mock up that I did while I was waiting for my KiHa to arrive:




Nothing fancy, you see, but there's not that much space on an A5 sheet after all! And, of course, you'll have to imagine a few trees, and people, and cats, and road signs, and, and, and...


I was, however, surprised how useful the mock up turned out to be, because it showed me how careful I have to place the elements to provide all the necessary clearances. A particularily tight area will be the warehouse in the upper right corner. Thak god, the KiHa hasn't really so much overhang in the outer curves as it seemed from photograps- 12mm clearance from the track centreline will suffice:





So much for the moment!




(More food for the crawlers: Zショーティー ロクハン )

Edited by MichiK
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The Next Station Is...

Love the paper mockup! Reminds me of cutout building postcards that they used when I was young.

Still waiting to get my Z Shorty through the post!

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(Still no progress what so ever here... I was completely occupied with the preparations and the afterpains of the Fürstenfeld model show.

However, I've added at least some greenery to  the mock up, because it was to be one of my exhibits. Pictures here in post #29.


...And of course: Thank you for the likes!)

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Indeed, I do, Jeff! Planes, ships, cars, minions, architecture... you name it.


By the way: There actually is something you might call paper rafting - probably about the only form of paper crafting I don't practise... yet?pap

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Lol! Next paper flying?!


feel free to present any tips or techniques you have on paper crafting in a thread in the scenery forums. Lots of folks do various paper stuff and it’s always great to hear new techniques, tips, gotchas etc!


we have an annual papercraft convention in dc area I keep meaning to make it to, maybe this summer!



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And the livin' is easy

...And I'm still waiting for my mojo to return from vacations. 😒


In the mean time at least I've settled one quite crucial point:
The thing with model railways is that some components usually are grossly oversized, rails in particular. This leads to platforms that are much higher than they should be, which in my case would be twice as obvious and distracting as on 'normal' layouts.


I've decided to go for a platform 2' 6" above rail level. I've found that number in an Meiji-era-document on Japanese stations ( tszt01.pdf at ). The KiHa52 has its floor at 1200-and-something millimeters but steps at about 1000 mm. Thus, it should well get together with a platform level of 762 mm. Furthermore, I've decided to raise the ground level in the 'open countryside' to 2.5 mm, and streets and the like to 3.3 mm (using carboard of 2.5 mm and 0.8 mm thickness, respectively). Together with the 5.25 mm height of the Rokuhan track, the platform level then calculates to 5.45 mm (i.e., about 1200 mm in real life) above street level:





In real life this translates roughly into the ommission of the lowermost step of the station stairs. I've done a quick test piece to check the visual appearance:
From a 'normal' angle the platform gives quite a high, but not overly high impression - fine!





And this is what it looks loke from rail level and platform level, respectively - quite some difference!









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Finally - after this year's heat wave and gazillions of other distractions - some progress here: I've done most of the underconstruction.


All parts were drawn onto a sheet of 1.5mm strong cardboard (the same stuff that beer mats are made of). The position of the tracks is not final, yet, but I need to know the aproximate position of the feeder cable now.




All parts cut out.




The frame is glued under the base board...




Diagonal bracings are fitted...




Finally, a few feet from 2.5mm card are attached. (They protect the corners a bit, and leave a little gap under the layout for the feeder cable to pass through).





Now, the whole construction rests under a few books and is allowed to dry thorougly.

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Excellent waffle frame michi, this will be very sturdy! Amazing what this form or bracing can do! Love the cross lap joints and joint plates. 





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Thank you, Jeff, and yes: The base IS indeed sturdy (but to be fair, it's also small, which helps) !


Well, I had hoped for some progress during the week, but no. The only thing I got done so far is one meager print out...


In the meantime:

Doctor Yellow exploring the concrete canyons!








In the last picture, you can see how the feeder cable is led outside.





This temporary setup was done with Paper Structure buildings that I've slap-dashed together for our paper model show in Munich a few weeks ago.




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I really would like to get into the Z-shorty (regular Z does not interest me all that much since I am invested in N, but the Z-shorty are "fun").


Maybe some day.


Keep posting these cool layouts and stuff you are building for the Z-Shorty.

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Jeff, we were quite satisfied with the show, the only sad point being that way too few visitors were children - but we will work on that.

You might want to have a look at the construction report of Pitje's Tokyo Tower, it's quite a show, even if it's only in German lingo!

(And for completeness' sake: Here's the link to UHU02's original kit, but he designed a slightly simpler version, too... 😉)


Well, Chadbag, he Z shorties are fun, that's for sure. Addictive, too, but I suppose that can do no (additional) harm anymore? Also, the rolling stock is quite cheap (i.e., compared to "serious" models) and don't require much space. I realy can see no reason against having a few!

Edited by MichiK
Missing link added - oh my!
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Last week, I've build "out of the box" examples of the warehouse and the taxi garage. I used those to check the clearances on the layout. Again, the warehouse is the tightest fit, but the trains can pass, nonetheless.





Therefore, I glued the tracks to the base. I've also started with the fillets made of 2.5mm card, but they still need some thorough dry fitting.






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And now for today's progress:

I started with the two residential buildings. They are the only buildings of this series without an interior, which will mean some scratch building. But first I cut, score and fold the walls. The "floor"  is separated from the rest.





I cut out the windows only after scoring and folding, otherwise  the walls would be too weak to stand the mechanical stress!





The floors are laminated to a second layer of card (with a handmade texture)





Then the inner sides are painted a bit, brown for the window frames and black in the areas that don't belong to the living room. The windows are glazed with some transparent film taken from old envelopes.





Inbetween  also the roofs are prepared: I scored them on the backside with one of the most usefull tools in papermodelling, an empty ball pen! Thus, the fold gets a little bit rounded and there are no edges to be painted.



Edited by MichiK
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The (rudimentary) interor is scratchbuild from various card bits.




There' no need to overdo it, the windows aren't that clear, anyway!





A different interior for the second house:




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Finally the sunshades and the roofs are attached - finished (for the moment)!





There's one question, which has to be answered in the nearer future: How should I do the street side of the gardens? In the mock up they are simply open towards the street, but is this realistic? I'd appreciate your suggestions!



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Beautiful work michi! This is going to be a hit at your next papercraft show! It’s getting my juices flowing for doing more papercraft stuff. My last ventures were trying stuff for t scale and it was really fun and interesting at that scale, but unfortunately when t scale sort of stalled there my overall interest in it got put aside! 


Kudos to you





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Umm... long time, no see ? 😓


Well, I've resumed work on this layout, at last, and this is what happened:

The fillets (2.5mm card board), which raise the ground level, were (more or less) carefully dry fitted.





The spot for the little field was cut out, and the rails got a first coat of rust colour.





The streets, made from 0.8mm card, were added - the level crossings will be added later on.





And finally, all the gaps between the "earthworks" and the tracks were filled - on the inside with fine sand and glue, on the outside with instant filler from the DIY market, and between the track and the connector with ballast. Now the tracks are ready to be painted, but I'll leave that for tomorrow...



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I try to get it "finished" until the beginning of march when there's a model railway show here in munich. There's only a month left, but it might just work...

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On 1/29/2019 at 7:52 PM, MichiK said:

Now the tracks are ready to be painted, but I'll leave that for tomorrow...

...got home and found the man cave blocked by the laundry and the best wife all doing her water colours, oh my!


So I gave the tracks the coat of dark earth today. Maybe a bit too much, so I might brush the sleepers again a bit darker - we'll see. Anyway, the railheads are cleaned again, and the trains are running smoothly.



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