Parking Spaces, Part Two

With the bulk of the Johnson Country DHS Parking Garage assembled, I can turn to the elevator shaft and stairwell. Despite taking the time to scratchbuild the structure so that it better matches the prototype, including the full stairwell was well beyond either my desire or ability. Luckily this portion of the garage faces away from the aisle, so I can employ my usual hiding and masking techniques I’ve developed for other buildings on The Hills Line.

Since the prototype segment is primarily glass and metal, I went with acrylic and styrene to simulate the materials. Plastruct acrylic sheets can easily be cut with a utility knife. I’m fortunate that the structure is a simple box, so I didn’t have to try to cut intricate shapes.

Superglue is not the recommended adhesive for acrylic since it fogs the material. Fortunately, I was already planning on fogging the material. A bead of thin CA joins the corners with a strong bond. I then washed the panels to remove any fingerprints or other substances before coating the plastic with Testors Dullcoat to turn the acrylic opaque.

For the metal framing, I designed the pattern in Adobe Illustrator to be cut with my Cricut plotter. It took a few tries, adjusting the width of the pattern as well as the thickness of the material until I found a workable solution that would both replicate the prototype but also hold up to the construction process.

Ultimately .010 styrene gave me the best results, even if I still had to cut the panels out after running them through the Cricut. Since the plotter uses a drag knife, some of the corners are less than square. A few passes with a sanding stick cleans up the edges.

The metal framework was painted with Rust-Oleum aluminum spray paint, then lightly weathered with an India Ink wash. I attached the frame to the frosted acrylic with CA glue, then set it aside. Up next is striping, weathering, and installation of the completed garage on the layout.

4 thoughts on “Parking Spaces, Part Two

  1. Man that came out great! I recently scratchbuilt lighted soda machines in HO. It was fun! Video on my YT channel My Finger Lakes Railway. Happy modeling – Bill.

    Liked by 1 person

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