Designing Buildings on The Computer Presented by: Dave Roeder MMR
Background: <ul><li>Those of us who model industrial railroading are always in need of backdrop buildings. In the past we had to rely on our skills to create these from scratch or from large structure kits unfolded and set against the wall. </li></ul><ul><li>Back when I built some of these  there was not much else available. Walthers offered printed sheets of brick paper and black lined windows and doors on clear styrene. I made some of my building flats from scratch and others from the large Heljan European brewery kit – Walthers # 322-678. You see a lot of these on older layouts. </li></ul><ul><li>Replacing these is not a real high priority, but I have been reading the ads and new product reviews found in Scale Rails and Model Railroader Magazine in an effort to find a better way. There are numerous ads for operation and design software, but only one firm offering custom design and build software for structures. </li></ul>
Evan Designs software <ul><li>A product review and subsequent build up article in the August 2007 NMRA Scale Rails magazine led me to purchase Model Builder Software from Evan Designs -www.ModelTrainSoftware.com </li></ul><ul><li>My intention was to replace some of the older backdrop flats using this new technology. In addition I wanted to try this new technology out on some HOn3 structures for my minimalist narrow gauge railroad, the Silverton Gladstone & Northerly. </li></ul>
Model Builder <ul><li>I called the company just after the NMRA national convention and purchased the complete set of 2 CD’s containing Model Builder’s software and Modeler’s Toolkit. There was a special deal in connection with the convention, so I also received a nice bonus package with free samples of some of the other products offered by Evan Designs. </li></ul><ul><li>The Model Builder CD allows you to design, save and print out building flats or complete structures. It comes with written instructions and is easy to learn. After reading the manual and installing the software, you can get started. There are many choices for building materials and roofing as well as doors, windows and trim. </li></ul><ul><li>The paper recommended is designed to print with inkjet printers. I used plain paper and premium 24lb. 96/108 white paper from Office Max. The heavier paper seems to be the best. </li></ul>
Getting things together <ul><li>Some basic supplies you need to have on hand: </li></ul><ul><li>Helix Cutting Mat 12” X 18” [the green one found everywhere] </li></ul><ul><li>Bulk pack [ 100 ] Xacto #11 blades – an absolute requirement </li></ul><ul><li>Computer running Microsoft Windows 98/NT/ME/200XP or XP-Pro </li></ul><ul><li>Inkjet printer [ mine is an HP PSC1510] </li></ul><ul><li>Model Builder Software V1.4.1 2007 </li></ul><ul><li>Plain printer paper - .005” thick 8.5” X 11” [The cheap stuff] </li></ul><ul><li>Cardstock .010” thick in any size you find </li></ul><ul><li>Mat board .055” thick sheet 32” X 40” – about $8.15 per sheet at Art Mart </li></ul><ul><li>Krylon UV resistant spray # 1305 or 1309 at Art Mart </li></ul>
Tool list Elmers white glue Walthers Goo or BARGE cement Glue Stick Scotch Tape Razor Saw Sanding Stick Toothpicks Approx. 3/16” square wood strip stock Scale ruler for your scale - HO , N, O Etc: 2” Machinist square 4” Machinist square 12” combination square 6” steel machinists rule #11 Xacto Knife Box Knife Pounce Wheel – to make fold lines Drafting pencil with .5mm lead Sharpie markers Color markers – from ART MART
Using Model Builder <ul><li>To get started all you need to do is select a scale and press enter. Model Builder has a toolbar with selections for walls, roofing, windows, doors and utilities. </li></ul><ul><li>After reading the manual and practicing for a while, you will soon be creating scale sized realistic structures and building flats. </li></ul>
Modelers’ Toolkit <ul><li>Modelers’ Toolkit includes Sign Creator and Window Designer. This CD also includes American Advertising Collection, Stained Glass windows and Brickyard 3.3. </li></ul><ul><li>American advertising is clip art which can be sized and printed, but not saved. </li></ul><ul><li>Stained Glass is windows for churches and funeral parlors.Stained glass has 4 sub categories resulting in a lot of stained glass for the money. </li></ul><ul><li>Brickyard 3 is background material that your can use to broaden your brick/ masonry wall variety. </li></ul><ul><li>Both Stained glass and Brickyard 3.3 appear on the pull down menu “other” in Model Builder. </li></ul><ul><li>Sign Creator is a large collection of clip art. You have many choices on the toolbar and can select , modify and/or re-size the sign to meet you needs. These signs can not be saved to a file. I found the “end of block” sign very handy as a marker on my layout. </li></ul><ul><li>There are road signs, construction signs, informational signs, railroad signs and a lot of advertisements/billboards. </li></ul>
Window Designer Window treatments and signs from Window Designer Software in Modeler’s Toolkit CD
Window Designer <ul><li>A sample is shown here. The software allows you numerous possibilities from a small ¼” X ¾” double hung to plate glass store windows. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination. </li></ul><ul><li>Window Designer allows you to create window treatments for existing structures or custom sizes for scratch-built buildings. You can save these files in the Window Designer library. </li></ul>
Wall section with window treatments cut from plain paper and glued with glue stick
Building 101 – Frisco Café - HO <ul><li>The following slides take you through the design of a simple building. Once you have mastered these steps, creating larger and more complex structures is easy. </li></ul>
Building 101 – Frisco Cafe Building walls are sized on screen to create a 3” wide X 3 ½” deep X 4 ½” tall 2 story Cafe
Building 101 – Frisco Cafe <ul><li>Here is the selected brick wall material sized on the computer to create a small Café. </li></ul><ul><li>The building will be 3” wide X 3.5” deep and will have a 4.5” high front wall and a 4” tall rear wall. </li></ul><ul><li>You can stretch the brick material for the front and right side walls to fit on 8.5” wide paper, then duplicate that wall on the bottom of the same page. </li></ul><ul><li>Add the brick crown 3” wide on top and the Cornice above the front door/window area. These are extended .2” past the cut brick edge. </li></ul><ul><li>Duplicate the top brick crown and place it 4” up on the rear wall. </li></ul><ul><li>Create a couple of strips of tile caps for trim on the the walls. </li></ul>
Building 101 – Frisco Cafe Front and rear doors, 2 green windows in front and 5 windows on rear wall added. Additional trim added to all four walls. Structure was sized to fit on one sheet HO scale.
Building 101 – Frisco Cafe <ul><li>Next we add doors and windows to our structure. A store front was selected from the file and sized to fit the front wall under the cornice. A green window was selected, sized and duplicated for the second story. </li></ul><ul><li>The rear wall received a weathered door and 5 red framed windows. These windows can be arranged automatically in the horizontal and vertical using the software. </li></ul><ul><li>A small flat cornice was added to the top of the front wall, then both sides of the front wall and the front edge of both side walls received a stone trim. </li></ul><ul><li>Side walls received a bit of extra tile trim and a section of brick to support the front façade wall. </li></ul><ul><li>The final item added was vertical colored tabs on all four edges. These are used to help eliminated the white paper edge at each corner. </li></ul>
Frisco Café - Selecting a roof <ul><li>There are numerous possibilities for roofing materials. Since our Café has a flat roof, a tin standing rib material was selected, sized and saved as a separate file. If you plan ahead and allow enough room on your project set up, you can include the roof on the same file as the rest of the structure. </li></ul>
Printing and sealing the building <ul><li>Once you have previewed the final project, you can print the project on you inkjet printer. </li></ul><ul><li>After the ink has dried, spray the paper with Krylon UV resistant clear. This protects against fading and seals the printed matter. </li></ul>
Building 102 – putting it together <ul><li>Start by putting a fresh #11 Xacto knife blade in your holder. You do not want to try this with anything but a new blade. </li></ul><ul><li>Use a 12” scale ruler for a guide and cut the structure from the paper. Cut the bottom of each wall exactly on the edge of the printing. This structure is made from 4 separate walls. The end walls must have angle cuts to create the roof slope. This roof slope is 30 degrees. Cut each vertical wall carefully at 90 degrees to the base. Use a small machinists square. </li></ul><ul><li>Use a colored marker to cover the white edges of the printed paper. </li></ul>
Building 102 - Cutting the mat board <ul><li>Once you have the walls and roof cut out you can begin making the mat board supports the walls will be attached to. </li></ul><ul><li>In this case we need the two long side walls to be covered up to each end with mat board. The little tab of brick at the bottom is to wrap around the end walls and cover any corner edges. </li></ul><ul><li>The two end walls need to fit inside the long side walls, so the mat board must be cut shorter by .055” [mat board thickness] on each vertical edge to allow the end walls to come up flush on the corners. </li></ul><ul><li>The roof is made from two identical pieces of printed material. These must be cut apart, then one is rotated 180 degrees to create the proper shadows down the roof slope. Cut these oversize, tape together, then glue them to a piece of .010” cardstock using the glue stick. </li></ul><ul><li>Cut the roof from the printed side to allow overhang at the sides and ends. </li></ul><ul><li>Turn over the roof and mark a centerline, then use the 12” steel straightedge and the pounce wheel to make a fold line in the back side of the roof. </li></ul><ul><li>Use a colored marker to darken the underside and edges of the roof. </li></ul>
Building 102 walls and roof back side Note that printed paper has been cut larger than the .055” mat board on both end walls. Roof backing is made from .010” cardstock. The 2 roof sections are held together with Scotch tape, then glued to the cardstock. The orange material is .055” thick mat board
Building - 102 wood bracing The wood bracing is white pine cut from scrap 2 X 4’s into approximately 3/16” square strips.
Building 102 - wood bracing <ul><li>There are many different ways to put the four walls together. This method provides a warp free structure that will last for many years. </li></ul><ul><li>If you have a table saw, simply cut up your scrap 2x4’s into 3/16” square sticks. The alternative is to spend a lot of money on basswood strips at the hobby shop. </li></ul><ul><li>Use Walthers Goo or white glue to attach four braces to each of the long walls and two to the roof. </li></ul><ul><li>Note the short vertical walls that join the end walls need to have the braces inset .055” [ mat board thickness] to allow the end walls to come up flush. </li></ul>
Building 102 - Assemble the walls <ul><li>Use either Walthers Goo or White Glue to glue one long wall to one side wall. Use a fixture [ a large toolmakers’ vee block and a piece of 2” square steel is shown] to keep things at 90 degrees until glue has dried. Repeat for other two walls. </li></ul>
Building 102 Final details include steps and signs
Photo Gallery of structures designed and saved on Model Builder Software <ul><li>1 Feed and Grain in N scale </li></ul><ul><li>2 Sugar Creek depot HO </li></ul><ul><li>3 Falls Paper Products in N scale </li></ul><ul><li>4 Frisco Café HO </li></ul><ul><li>5 Single stall engine house HO </li></ul><ul><li>6 Soda Gulch smelter for HOn3 RR </li></ul><ul><li>7 Gladstone ore loading for HOn3 RR </li></ul><ul><li>8 Large Building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>9 Brick building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>10 Grey concrete building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>11 Old brick building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>12 Brick building flat with arched windows for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>13 Tan concrete curtain wall building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>14 Yellow brick curtain wall building flat for WG&F RR </li></ul><ul><li>15 Building Flat – HO 7 5/16 wide X 11 9/16 tall </li></ul><ul><li>16 Small Post Office – O scale </li></ul>
Feed and grain supply – N scale Sign was made using Microsoft WORD ART and DRAW
Pattern for N scale feed and grain building Pattern is selected from pull down menu, sized to N scale, then printed on plain paper.
SG&N RR - Soda Gulch Smelter free sanding building flat - HO scale This building is flat, however it would not require much additional effort to create the stone dock with a metal roof supported by two posts in 3 dimensions.
SG&N Railroad Gladstone Ore Loading – HO scale
Large curtain wall building flat - HO scale This building requires 4 sheets printed on “landscape” setting.
Large brick building flat - HO scale This building requires 2 sheets printed on “landscape” setting. This building is 19 1/8” long