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Making streets and road markings

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Hi all

Greetings from Norway!

I am a newbie on this forum - but I have read a lot of posts here - it seems to be a good place to get some info from Japanese railroad enthusiasts!  Some of the layouts presented here are most interesting.

Because of space problems - I have decided to build a coffe table layout to put in a table recently purchased. Its a bit small - just 65 x 117 cm - but  hopefully I can get a useful track plan and a city scenery in it. I have lived in Kobe for 2 years and making a japanese cityscape is very tempting.



I am using Kato tracks - and have build quite a lot of buildings - mainly from Greenmax, Kato and Tomytec. 

I have some questions though :

1  How to build streets?  I have some thin balsa sheets - is it a clever idea to glue them to the plywood base, then use filling+sanding and paint?

2  Road marking - I have searched the net , but cant find any japanese style road decals anywhere.  I figure Kato has made some - but I cant find them anywhere.


So how do you construct your streets - and how do you make street markings?



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Kato do produce a set of road marking transfers - part number 23-422. They look to in stock at MG Sharp in teh UK at present...




I use a variety of techniques for roads...all the way from using the Faller flexi-road for longer stretches to woodland scenics tarmac coloured paint on a smooth surface such as MDF. I have thrown a couple of examples on here.


The first picture is of the flexi-road, which is on a dual carriageway section.


The second uses the Kato road markings on a painted surface. The car park bays are individually cut out microstrip...which took me ages!



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welcome to JNS!


for my street car ttrak i have been experimenting with "printing" my roads using the computer. this way you can engineer all the road markings you want and cut them out until you have it just the way you want it. these can then be glued to your surface (ie the balsa or styrene) and then hit with a coat of dull coat. you can even weather the roads in the computer if you want to (ie take into photoshop and do a lot of airbrushing oil stains, cracks, etc) or come along afterwards and do this with weathering powders, dry brushing, etc.


sidewalks can then be built out of styrene or balsa and ploped on top of the streets then. if you use balsa for your sub road bed then you could even easily dig through the street to make a nasty pot hole or repair scene (could do this with styrene as well with a rototool, but bit more work!).


if you design how the roads go down and put them on something like styrene you could even stick them down with double stick tape so you could lift them off later if you decide to remark your roads.





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JohnD - Welcome to the forum.


Beside Kato's street markings, TGW also makes Japanese road markings. Here are some that are listed a Hobby Search in Japan:





There are a lot of ways to make roads. I happen to like Claude's results with the methods he used.


Here is a link at the forum to another method using artist's foam sheets:


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Martijn Meerts

Figures that now I don't live in Norway anymore, there's someone with an interest in Japanese trains from Norway joining the forum =)


Anyways, I find Faller's road paint to work quite well. It's fairly thick but flows well, and there's a slight texture in it so it does look like (rather fresh) tarmac.


I haven't really thought much about how I would do streets, I've tried various things before, but never really liked the result. The Faller stuff is probably the best looking roads I've seen. Although, I've only used it for small tarmac paths crossing tracks around the station area, to make a small road for service vehicles to be able to get to all platforms. I've been considering using styrene sheets as a base for roads, glue those down, and then paint them with the Faller stuff. I'll likely also cut out stencils from styrene to use as a street marking mask, and then spray paint the markings on. Either that, or carefully use regular masking tape and a small needle in the airbrush :)

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Cardboard might work better than balsa if the balsa has a wood grain texture to it.


For my first diorama, I used a grey textured spray paint from an arts-and-crafts store to paint the roads, and it turned out pretty well. Textured paint specifically for model railroading is also available in Japan.

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The second uses the Kato road markings on a painted surface. The car park bays are individually cut out microstrip...which took me ages!


Nice! Love the car park.

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I used the road markings from Busch. Of course they are german, but the arrows and lines are the same as in Japan.


Your idea with the balsa wood is ok. I used this technique in my H0 tram layout.

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