Sylvanau ... Scenery 2

View of Sylvanau

July 19, 2002

The village of Sylvanau now consists of five buildings, one large barn, and four houses, at the junction of two roads. Various domestic farm animals graze in the fields beside the village, while a couple of residents work in the village. In the distance is the neighboring village, tentatively called "Jittersdorf".

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Trees

Trees

Unless you're modelling a railroad that runs through the desert, you can never have enough trees in your landscape. In N-scale, I made trees using a simple technique. I'd make the trunk of the tree by soldering four or five strands of thin wire together, spreading the strands apart at the top. After painting the trunk a dark brown or black, I'd glue a small piece of clump foliage material on the top of the trunk. For large areas of forest, I'd just glue the flocking directly onto the layout surface. Unfortunately, these techniques don't scale up to H0 scale. Since trees in H0 have eight times the volume, more detail is needed in the tree.

To start with, I've made a few trees from the "Realistic Tree Kits" from Woodland Scenics (TR1102). This kit contains 14 tree trunks and three shades of green flocking. Making the trees is fairly straight-forward, but like most tasks in this hobby, it takes a bit of practice.

First, note that the tree trunks come flattened. Twist and bend the branches to form a full three-dimensional shape. The branches will keep the shape. Since the plastic is glossy, you'll want to paint the tree trunks appropriately.

Next apply glue to the branches. Woodland Scenics recommend using their Hob-e-Tac glue, which becomes especially tacky after about 20 minutes. But contact cement is also supposed to be good. Once the applied glue is sufficiently tacky, when there are no more white spots, dip the tree into a bag of loose foliage clumps, and shake the bag. Foliage clumps will stick to the branches, but you'll need to attach a few more clumps and adjust the shape appropriately.

Finally, applying some dilute glue over the tree will help the clumps hold their positions on the tree. I found that just sprinkling drops of glue around the foliage works fine. The instructions recommend using a spray bottle, but I found that when the clumps got too wet, they would lose adhesion with the Hob-e-Tac and fall off the tree.

Although the kit has enough trunks for 14 trees, there's not enough flocking for all 14, and you'll have to visit your local hobby store for more.

View of Sylvanau
Closeup of village, July 2002.

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