Whilst trying to find a suitable receptacle for my Mum and Dad's ashes for the big scattering tomorrow, I re-found my old TVR Car Club bag, with which I used to travel back and forth to Germany when I was a peripatetic clay modeller for their car industry.
And in it were two items I thought I'd lost years ago. One was a diorama base to display one of my lovely Fred Harris Replicast resin record boats, Campbell's K7 Bluebird. We'd only recently been to Coniston at that time and I decided to model the team's temporary base, where now stands the Bluebird Cafe. I wanted to show the old girl in the water, so I cut three holes in some perspex for the hull and sponsons.
I was struck when I was at Coniston that the water was ripply one side of the staithe, but completely mirror like the other, so I decided to have a go at rippling the Perspex with a spherical burr in the minidrill and to my amazement it worked very well. Took ages, of course, but I was pleased with the result. Then we moved house and it got put away, apparently in the TVR bag!
Now all I have to do is find the boat model!
Under this one was another little set piece that I knocked up when I was playing around with the idea of R/C 1/32nd scale narrow gauge. I'd made the brass masters for some chairs (I hate spiked track, looks so foreign!) and wanted to see how it looked on suitably manky old sleepers, so I made a small length of 3/4" gauge, pearwood sleepered track, ballasted with ash from our fire. Looked good to me. I love roadside railways, so just ran it across the lane to run like a tramway next to the lane. Now, lanes are NOT black, neither are they made of wet'n'dry sandpaper. They DO have some camber and often exhibit dips where the tractors and constant cars wear them down. This makes ridges which soon crack. Tiny cracks that fill with muck and show up. This was hammered home when I used to do a spot of tractor driving for a neighbour which saw me travelling 9 miles by, largely, lanes such as these, at a maximum 13mph. I had a lot of observation time to spend in my noisy cab.
Unfortunately the crossing timbers seem to have done a bunk somewhere!
This shot shows the cracks. And the kind of digs and scrapes that agricultural implements tend to leave behind.
On the left the grassy bank is in its basic shape form, prior to the application of medical lint, my particular favourite kind of grass. On the right the grass has been stuck down and roughly coloured, ready for blending into the tarmac, teasing out, shaving and final detail colouring
I should point out that these cost nothing. Everything is off-cuts. The w/m chairs were part of a favour from my own Ffestiniog style brass masters.
These set-pieces are straight from the bag... dust, crap of all sorts after years tucked away, but they seem unaffected by damp, etc. so are now in the new shed in the "arts" corner and will be finished...sometime.