Every railway modeler wants to create their own work of art and they all want it to be as realistic as possible but still be feasible. The question that is raised every so often in the world of scratch building is, should i add glass to my windows, if so how?, and what should i use??
A simple answer to that question is to experiment and find what techniques and products work best for your situation. This write up briefly explains my adventure into this world of glass.
I started a project a while ago and I wanted to create this building as realistically as possible and I eventually came to the installation of glass which left my head scratching, in the past I had used clear plastic packaging, but I had none and it was usually quite hard to work with and create smooth curves out of.
After a bit of trailing and testing I came across some clear material that is used when creating stencils. This material is called acetate and is supplied in various sized rolls Click Here to buy some from a NZ supplier. The downside to this was that it came supplied in a roll making all most impossibly to make flat as the sheet seemed to have an incredible material memory (it kept rolling back up again), this could be overcome by heating it up and flattening it.
This acetate can easily be cut with scissors and glued on to the window panes with super glue. The only problem with super glue is that it tends to leave a white mist over the acetate. This white mist can be removed with a paint brush and some water, simply dip the paint brush in the water and brush away the mist and let it dry. Be careful if you have used water based paints as using this removal technique near paint can quickly remove it from the surface.
Comparing this intermodal crane control room with and with out acetate, creates a noticeable difference and in my eyes it looks better, but for the amount of time and precision needed, it probably wasn't worth it. On the other hand it is easy to notice whether a structure has glass fitted or not as it creates a hazy effect on anything that is behind the acetate thus boosting the realism of the model.
With Out Acetate
As always its up to you, as to how you go about adding windows or whether you even bother. In my eyes it is an absolute necessity as you don't find houses with windows that are lacking glass, you also don't find houses with unsightly gaps between them and the ground (however that's another topic for another blog). All in all I think its worth the time and is definitely worth a go if you are trying to increase the life likeness of your models.