Birchall Tunnel

Discussion in 'Dioramas and static displays' started by York Paul, Jan 29, 2020.

  1. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    So here is my next scenic diorama project which will eventually form part of a set of other dioramas based on North Staffordshire Railway influence, Birchall Tunnel is disused and currently devoid of track but with luck and a lot of money will be reopened to rail traffic again. The tunnel is situated one mile south of the former Leek station on the former Churnet Valley Line from Macclesfield to Uttoxeter and this diorama will copy the 69 yard long tunnel (abate in shortened form) and have two additional scenic boards containing the cutting entrance, so I've planned for a total combined length of three metres. So far Andy solis has provided the Tunnel nameboards and the bridge plates from 3D resin printed plastic and Intentio has created the tunnel entrance from laser cut MDF.

    Here is the original tunnel entrance photographed a few years ago.

    [​IMG]

    Here is the laser cut portal, the sidewall curve at ground level which appears somewhat acute will be buried under the ballast as part of the foundation.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    The ogee shaped lintels are cut from 6mm MDF and so some fettling with filler by me is necessary to make the correct sizes of stone block and the mitre angles of the capping blocks situated on the top of each buttress.

    The[​IMG]
     
  3. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    The 3D resin printed nameboards designed by Andy Sollis will add a nice finishing touch.

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    Follow :facepalm:

    sorry...:thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:
     
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  5. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Follow ??? not sure what you mean :scratchchin:... I must get some paint on those signs.:thumbup:
     
  6. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Looking forward to following this Paul. It's time I started something myself.

    The tunnel frontage looks the business.

    Cheers

    Toto
     
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  7. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Cheers Toto :cheers:, I have plans ! This one is the start of several scenes which will all join together forming a nice big portable garden layout which can be set up for a play on nice days. :thumbs:
     
  8. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Ever thought of knocking up a small silicon mould and resin cast all those lintels.

    Paul
     
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  9. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Not really thought about it but this portal is big... its double track width and a scale thirty feet in height. I can certainly make a mould to cast the ogee capping stones which may well be a better look than thin laser cut MDF segments
     
  10. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Sticking several of the MDF segments together with a piece of paper to seperate each segment to give a mortar course, into a long enough section to cast.

    As a test use a tube Silicon sealer emptied into a bucket of warm water with a lot of cheap washing up liquid. Keep working the silicon into a ball ...... hears a video



    I'm sure you'll have some silicon and plaster to be able give it a go

    Paul
     
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  11. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    I used a very similar method to make the brake blocks on my Andrew Barclay build. I used the same silicon sealer and cast the brakes with 5 minute two pack resin.

    Cheer's, Pete.
     
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  12. Sir TophamHatt

    Sir TophamHatt Full Member

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    Hi Paul I like the theme to your diorama. I do like the laser cut tunnel porthole which will look great on the diorama.
    I will be following your work with great interest.:thumbs:
     
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  13. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks so much for your interest Mark, the laser cut tunnel portals are by Philip Healey-Pearce at Intentio Designs, they are cut in various thickness MDF from 6mm down to 2.5mm for the corbeling row underneath the stone ogee plinth decor... not cheap but made to my spec, Philip is very good at what he does. Andy Solis and I have reworked the tunnel name boards so I've now got another pair slightly of different design, I'll pop a few pictures up with an update.:thumbs:
     
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  14. Sir TophamHatt

    Sir TophamHatt Full Member

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    It’s great to know that there are people out there that can produce items to your own modelling specifications.
     
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  15. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Yep it is Mark and just talking to people who have specific bespoke lines of business will often produce the necessary results, I call it "clustering" when different people come together on commissions to produce a common result... it does also help to promote ones own presence in the marketplace. :thumbup:
     
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  16. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    The tunnel name boards should be shipping if not already in the UK.

    I look forward to seeing them painted :thumbup:
     
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  17. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    I'm so happy Mr S that you are looking forward to seeing them painted cos.........................................................
     
  18. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    ..................................here they are being textured and weathered on my bench :avatar:, I'm aiming to have them look worn under layers of old lead based paint. Once the matt varnish has set I'll dry brush a layer of whitish pink over the crimson and dirt staining to give the sense of UV bleaching to the Gulf Red paint which BR (M) used in the 1950's.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    The first of two portals have been assembled and flashed over in grey base primer, I put the stone corbel capping stones together as blocks which I fillered with plastic stopper... more filler and sanding has yet to be done as the prime coat shows up certain faults. The bricks will be finished as Staffordshire Brindle brick purple brown colour with lime mortar pointing.

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Bleached paintwork with distenpered surface now weathered, tomorrow I'll seal these with a coat of matt varnish... hopefully this will soften the surface whilst leave the impression of worn pealing paint. From the previous picture of these boards the yellowish tone of the lettering now over layered with a dilute coat of flat white gives the impression of rust coming through the metalwork, the trick here is paint in the rust colour first then over paint in the finish colour. To create the effect of crazing and slightly pealing old lead paint add several layers of the ground colour drying between coats then add the tonal washes of dirt and grime, once tacky dry gently peal back with the back edge of a pointed scribe to reveal previous layers of colour. The paint will slightly "ruck" leaving shallow ridges and dips, this will look like distempered slightly pealing paintwork once finally varnished over.

    [​IMG]
     
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