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F Fisk

Outland -vs- KATO model buildings

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F Fisk
Posted (edited)

The question,

Will a $15 ebay Outland building fit into an all Kato Dio Town layout?

Here are the results.

-Most Outland models (and derivatives) must be painted and windows added.   

-The snap tab holes are a small issue Im willing to overlook.

-3D DLP Printed parts (HVAC, antenna, railings) help roof detail.

-Excellent background filler and good stand alone presence.

Any thoughts?  Anyone.

 

 

 

20200625_101744 2mp.jpg

20200625_101736 2mp.jpg

20200625_101754 2mp.jpg

20200625_101806 2mp.jpg

20200625_101820 2mp.jpg

Edited by F Fisk
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Claude_Dreyfus

They look pretty good. Not a manufacturer I was familiar with, but a quick online check has revealed a reasonable range, and the prices aren't bad either. I would need to see them 'in the flesh' for a proper comparison, but they fit in well in the photos. As you say, they need painting, detailing and weathering (but I find some Kato RTP models need this as well).

 

They look ideal if you have a large townscape to do... particularly given the price and variable availability of the Diotown offerings.

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Cat

We've added a number of these kits to the stockpile to fill in specific buildings.  The slab sides are ideal for kitbashing, so we'll be able to quickly convert them into fairly reasonable approximations of actual buildings in the cities we're modelling.

The tab holes are quick and easy to fill in with Testor's Contour Putty, or any putty of choice.  Removing a lot of the window mullions gives a stronger Japanese image.

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Kiha66

Thanks for sharing your photos Fisk, those buildings look great.  I'm getting very tempted to pick some up now!

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cteno4

Yes with a little work on adding floors and cleaning up seams and some painting and they are quite nice! Great bang for the buck if you can put in a little extra work.
 

one thing you can do if you want to clean up the tab holes before assembly is nip off 75% of the tabs and pre fill the holes like half way with putty (you can make a little filler piece of square stock on a hunk of styrene to back the hole and only let it get filled half way) Sand and paint while disassembled then assemble. You have to glue them now but with glue and clamps you can get better seams.
 

im looking at doing the floors as an internal piece that slides in so that in the future I can light floors and add interior details. Some of the building structures won’t do this well from the bottom (smaller first floor than higher floors) and are going to require from the top removal, but that shouldn’t be hard to do with roof piece popping out first. Core can run thru all the floors for elevator/stair well to hold them all together and run wires to each floor as needed. I’ll go see if I can find my test core, I had done a few floors using some square plastic tubing I had to make the core. Was fiddling with it and thinking using a round tube for the core and drill holes in the same place on each internal floor and then just cut spacer hunks of square tubing that would fit around the round tubing to make the external of the elevator core and space the floors evenly easily. Trying to find a fast way to knock the cores out systematically as I have about 20 of the Outland now.
 

Eventually I want to use arduino nanos to control lighting randomly turning on/off and this can go in the core so just supply power. Eventually I would love to network each nano to allow reprogramming or switch from brighter day lighting to the dimmer and random night lighting.

 

so true nipping out some of the mullions really helps the look of these! So does cleaning out the small radius in the corners of the windows.
 

Jeff

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AhmadKane
Posted (edited)

I had the hospital and the office building. So far I like the price, and the material. The fact it doesn't come in a box but in a parts sealed in a resealable bag from China does save you some postage and some customs payments. The hospital I really like, because there's no decent hospitals in N scale at the moment, most of them look like the old ones from the 70's when Roller Disco is still a thing. For me, they do not look like hospitals at all, and would die out. My hospital would be one of the cornerstones. I mean come on tomytec... One looks like the apartment for airbnb in Tokyo, the other is a mental ward

 

10116548.jpg.fe9499720fee2df27438ec1a67943329.jpg10116551a.thumb.jpg.757d6b41c088f1624a5211fcaff7e31d.jpg

 

 

 

Outland is, from what I see, the only maker that creates a tall modern multistory hospital that towers the entire city.

 

274722.thumb.jpg.fe1e1a64df63df0bda5c363cdc2621f2.jpg

 

Being a budget modeller I like the fact that I can buy three for the price of one tomytec high rise, and that I don't need to use any glue and just snap it to the holes. They're also good to start you off so that you can properly get a feel on how big is your town in the diorama, using Outland to scale it out and mark the size of your city before setting in some KATO and Tomytec. If I'd started off with Tomytec, I'd have very little if not at all cash for some scenic material, all of which, are rudimentally more important for me than the buildings (But that's my opinion)

 

 I'm looking forward to kitbash my hospital and add some fillers to make it look busier. Also in Indonesia, Gundam Enthusiasts, Military modellers use Outland all the time when they want to make ruins and battlegrounds. So that's also a win. But I don't think this would be an economic background filler, I'd be more tempted in making card stock for filler than having outland to do it.

 

EDIT: Couple of further observations. The back of the buildings are more often so basic. Maybe something could be customized on that part?

 

 

Edited by AhmadKane

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F Fisk
1 hour ago, Cat said:

We've added a number of these kits to the stockpile to fill in specific buildings.  The slab sides are ideal for kitbashing, so we'll be able to quickly convert them into fairly reasonable approximations of actual buildings in the cities we're modelling.

The tab holes are quick and easy to fill in with Testor's Contour Putty, or any putty of choice.  Removing a lot of the window mullions gives a stronger Japanese image.

Thanks

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F Fisk
4 hours ago, Claude_Dreyfus said:

They look pretty good. Not a manufacturer I was familiar with, but a quick online check has revealed a reasonable range, and the prices aren't bad either. I would need to see them 'in the flesh' for a proper comparison, but they fit in well in the photos. As you say, they need painting, detailing and weathering (but I find some Kato RTP models need this as well).

 

They look ideal if you have a large townscape to do... particularly given the price and variable availability of the Diotown offerings.

Thanks, I know there's nothing like having them in hand.  They are light. I think there about 20 buildings in all.  You hit the nail on the head with the price and availability of Kato buildings.

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F Fisk
59 minutes ago, AhmadKane said:

I had the hospital and the office building. So far I like the price, and the material. The fact it doesn't come in a box but in a parts sealed in a resealable bag from China does save you some postage and some customs payments. The hospital I really like, because there's no decent hospitals in N scale at the moment, most of them look like the old ones from the 70's when Roller Disco is still a thing. For me, they do not look like hospitals at all, and would die out. My hospital would be one of the cornerstones. I mean come on tomytec... One looks like the apartment for airbnb in Tokyo, the other is a mental ward

 

10116548.jpg.fe9499720fee2df27438ec1a67943329.jpg10116551a.thumb.jpg.757d6b41c088f1624a5211fcaff7e31d.jpg

 

 

 

Outland is, from what I see, the only maker that creates a tall modern multistory hospital that towers the entire city.

 

274722.thumb.jpg.fe1e1a64df63df0bda5c363cdc2621f2.jpg

 

Being a budget modeller I like the fact that I can buy three for the price of one tomytec high rise, and that I don't need to use any glue and just snap it to the holes. They're also good to start you off so that you can properly get a feel on how big is your town in the diorama, using Outland to scale it out and mark the size of your city before setting in some KATO and Tomytec. If I'd started off with Tomytec, I'd have very little if not at all cash for some scenic material, all of which, are rudimentally more important for me than the buildings (But that's my opinion)

 

 I'm looking forward to kitbash my hospital and add some fillers to make it look busier. Also in Indonesia, Gundam Enthusiasts, Military modellers use Outland all the time when they want to make ruins and battlegrounds. So that's also a win. But I don't think this would be an economic background filler, I'd be more tempted in making card stock for filler than having outland to do it.

 

EDIT: Couple of further observations. The back of the buildings are more often so basic. Maybe something could be customized on that part?

 

 

Looks great.  Nice to know there are other budget modelers  out there.

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F Fisk
1 hour ago, cteno4 said:

Yes with a little work on adding floors and cleaning up seams and some painting and they are quite nice! Great bang for the buck if you can put in a little extra work.
 

one thing you can do if you want to clean up the tab holes before assembly is nip off 75% of the tabs and pre fill the holes like half way with putty (you can make a little filler piece of square stock on a hunk of styrene to back the hole and only let it get filled half way) Sand and paint while disassembled then assemble. You have to glue them now but with glue and clamps you can get better seams.
 

im looking at doing the floors as an internal piece that slides in so that in the future I can light floors and add interior details. Some of the building structures won’t do this well from the bottom (smaller first floor than higher floors) and are going to require from the top removal, but that shouldn’t be hard to do with roof piece popping out first. Core can run thru all the floors for elevator/stair well to hold them all together and run wires to each floor as needed. I’ll go see if I can find my test core, I had done a few floors using some square plastic tubing I had to make the core. Was fiddling with it and thinking using a round tube for the core and drill holes in the same place on each internal floor and then just cut spacer hunks of square tubing that would fit around the round tubing to make the external of the elevator core and space the floors evenly easily. Trying to find a fast way to knock the cores out systematically as I have about 20 of the Outland now.
 

Eventually I want to use arduino nanos to control lighting randomly turning on/off and this can go in the core so just supply power. Eventually I would love to network each nano to allow reprogramming or switch from brighter day lighting to the dimmer and random night lighting.

 

so true nipping out some of the mullions really helps the look of these! So does cleaning out the small radius in the corners of the windows.
 

Jeff

Jeff, thanks for all the input.

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F Fisk
1 hour ago, Kiha66 said:

Thanks for sharing your photos Fisk, those buildings look great.  I'm getting very tempted to pick some up now!

Thank you.  There are around 20 outland and others available.  I have 2 of the non Outland derivatives and it is just as nice as Outland.  Ebay, free shipping etc... 

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cteno4

They are fun and with just a bit of work can be spiffed up a lot!

 

one other alternative I forgot is to remove all the millions (they are like 6”+ in width at scale which is really huge). Then just draw mullions on the acetate Windows, mullions on modern building are usually very small like 1-3” at most even on really big windows. Many windows now are frameless so all you need is the million drawn or printed on your acetate sheet you attach to the wall and get a whole wall done in one swoop!

 

i wish there were more inexpensive roof details. The old Walthers sets has some, but many of those were older buildings. Nice thing is many of the modern ones are just little rectangles with some small bobs off them. Adding roof signs also helps.

 

cheers

 

jeff

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F Fisk
23 hours ago, cteno4 said:

They are fun and with just a bit of work can be spiffed up a lot!

 

one other alternative I forgot is to remove all the millions (they are like 6”+ in width at scale which is really huge). Then just draw mullions on the acetate Windows, mullions on modern building are usually very small like 1-3” at most even on really big windows. Many windows now are frameless so all you need is the million drawn or printed on your acetate sheet you attach to the wall and get a whole wall done in one swoop!

 

i wish there were more inexpensive roof details. The old Walthers sets has some, but many of those were older buildings. Nice thing is many of the modern ones are just little rectangles with some small bobs off them. Adding roof signs also helps.

 

cheers

 

jeff

Jeff, get yourself a DLP 3D printer.  Just imagine all the roof details you could make.  I printed these rails and A/C units last week.  I too was disappointed in the Walthers kit I'd been given and frustrated with the lack of any substitutes.

roof detail.jpg

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cteno4

Nice! yes this is the kind of detail that even an inexpensive printer can do well! yeah walthers are not great but about the only thing out there. few on shapeways but gets pricy. 

 

you can start your own roof detail shop!

 

cheers

 

jeff

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JR 500系

Outland models are great for the budget model builder! It also costs lesser to ship them as they come unassembled, with little tabs to assemble them in little to no effort... Kato buildings on the other hand are extremely detailed but come assembled, which may add to the shipping costs especially more so for the larger ones like these

 

Outland models also come with some internal pieces to lock the building together and make it a bit sturdier, and these pieces are great for acting as mid-storey floors... but their plastic tends to be a tad thin and hence lighting them might have some issues with light passing through them, though this can be easily solved by blackening the inside of the walls... 

 

All in all, i do like the Outland models and if i didnt had a height restriction of 150mm on my layout, i would have gotten some of their really nice models like high rise towers and such but oh well... 

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