Tuesday 31 December 2013

Castle construction continues

I've been doing pieces of the castle almost every night, in front of the television. There's a TON of pieces (I'll count how many for my next post), all with many sprue attachment points that need to be cleaned up. It's tedious, but with NCIS in the background, some progress is slowly made. 

The base is done. A lot of scotch tape persuaded the "lid" to stay on the base while the liquid cement performs it's magic. I'm also glad I have my set of iron files, because 1 to 2 mm needed to be removed all around to make it fit flush with the rock base.
The seams between the flat pieces are very large, because the cobblestone-detail doesn't go all the way to the edge. Unlike a jetfighter's fuselage, I can't just fill the gap and sand it flush. Too much detail would be lost that I can't just repair. It's more than just rescribing a panel line. The stone texture is very fine, which is good, but I doubt I can reproduce it in puttied areas.

I decided to bite the bullet and see what would happen. I filled the largest seams with putty and scraped it flush with a spatula. About half of the seams will be hidden by further contructions, but some will remain partially visible.

A quick glance at the underside to show a pretty sturdy construction. While carrying it around, I have bumped walls, doorframes and even dropped it once. Sturdy construction indeed!

Second piece finished is the walkway that leads up to the main gate. Construction is a little awkward in certain steps, where you're glueing 4 pieces into a square, without much bracing or connector pins. Just hold it in your hands until the glue has done a part of it's work and you can let go again. You cannot clamp 2 pieces at a 90 degree angle, unless you build a specific rig or have more advanced tools.
Time flies by anyway, all recorded episodes of NCIS are done, we move on to Person of Interest.

Up close, we again see the seams we will have to hide somehow. Not sure yet what I'm gonna do. Also, is it just me, or is that angle pretty steep to expect horse and carriage to get up those slippery stones?

Next up is one of the three towers and a connecting wall piece (all pictures below already primed in grey). The contruction with 6 connectors seems very sturdy, but the bottom two don't match the tower's holes. They're off by 3 mm, which is more than just builder's error. Meh, 4 is enough, so I snipped them off.

The tower consists of 4 pieces, that don't fit too easily. Some of the stone pattern is also lost when glueing it all together. I tried adding the grooves (for lack of knowing the correct word) between the stones again with a hobby knife. Up to a point, that seems to have worked, although I made them a little too pronounced. An actual scribing tool would probably help, but I hesitate at buying tools I wouldn't need much.

A view of the inside shows what I mean by "not fitting too easily". You would assume the round piece to at least touch all 4 walls. From the outside, looking in (through a door or window), you won't notice it. Once the tower is closed, it's pretty dark in there.

Doors and window frames reuse the same parts. For the barred windows (in the outside wall, that don't open), you snip off the hinges. I filled with putty, but forgot it would shrink. Next windows will be puttied, allowed to dry more than last time, than sanded flush. I'm no perfectionist, but when perfection is simply a matter of doing it right, I should not hesitate to at least try.

A shot in frog perspective shows it will probably be an  impressive castle for my 1/72 scale adventures.

A view of the tower interior from both sides. It's always nice to have posable doors and windows when there is at least SOME detail on the inside. I always wonder why you can find so many kits with posable hatches, that just reveal an empty plastic interior.

With construction on the base complete, I airbrushed a first coat of black primer (back to black, since the grey still feels icky). It's a good thing I bought 200 ml bottles of the primer.
I taped off the areas where the walls and keep will be placed, so the glue can get a good bond, plastic to plastic, without paint interfering.
By the time this thing was finished, I could smell the compressor getting hot. No need to see if the safety would kick in, so I finished it up and called it a day.


  1. Interesting! Quite the unique project you have going on

  2. Nice work so far. I'll be keeping my eyes open for more progress.