Saturday, January 21, 2012

54mm Covered Bridge


I've posted before about how versatile the BMC/Americana buildings are, seems you can make them into just about anything.  As part of my new soldier table (not the best name...I'm open to suggestions) I wanted to make a covered bridge so I can do a Monocacy battle sometime in the future.

I planted myself at the kitchen counter with a utility knife and a BMC/Americana Andersonville kit and a Lee's headquarters set, everything I'd need for all of the components.

Always use a sharp blade; safety first!

 Here are all of the parts except for the ramp surfaces. The brown pieces are from the gates and palisade walls of the Andersonville kit, the gray is the roof of Lee's headquarters.  For convenience I matched the bridge length to the length of the roof panels to avoid any need for splicing.

For the inside support beams I cut down the guard tower supports from the Andersonville kit.

All of this was easy and relatively quick.  Now comes the difficult and time consuming part - melting the pieces together, what I call "plastic welding"

Melting plastic makes a pretty nasty and toxic smoke so I use lots of positive ventilation.  All the welding is done in my painting booth.

A respirator takes care of the fumes which escape the vent fan.

The soldering iron with a chisel tip does the trick, but the bond is brittle so more welds is better than less.

All the support timbers are welded into place.

Things are shaping up!

The peak of the roof had to be welded, making a pretty unsightly bond line.  This wasn't a problem as I added a vent along the peak which was bonded with liquid nails and clamped with sheetmetal screws; removed after the adhesive cured (about a week).

A little sway in the roofline was achieved by cutting the peak edge of the roof panels with a slight curve.

A coat of black paint will accuentate the detail as the finish coat is applied.

Here's the white wash treatment, note it's a little brighter just under the eaves where it'd be a little more sheltered from the weather. 

And here come the little men!

With the work done and the paint dried, scouts arrive to check out the
brand-new bridge.

They made it through to the other side, looks like it works.

The finished product in the heat of the action, with many skirmishes
and battles ahead.

Soldier on!




Rodger said...

Wow Mannie that is cool! Great work.

Fat Cat Hatcheter said...

"Theatre of Operations" instead of soldier table? Just a thought.

Mosstrooper said...

Very impressive indeed !

Scott B. Lesch said...

Tableau de la Guerre

or Tabelle der Schlacht?

Sam Wise said...

Very good tutorial and beautiful bridge!