Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Who makes a structure kit with a foundation?

1503 views
22 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 488 posts
Who makes a structure kit with a foundation?
Posted by Howard Zane on Friday, July 14, 2017 12:32 PM

After visiting and viewing many layouts, there is one thing i've noticed as a commonality.............most structures just sit on the layout, and rarely in the layout as they should be. It would be a simple and accurate thing to include a realistic and optional foundation 8-10 deep so building may be properly mounted on a grade or even on a flat surface, but with the prototypical look of structure being in the ground instead of being on it.

I have built foundations for all of my buildings as 80% are mounted on grades and I can attest to the fact that it is simple to do. If interested, just contact me, and I'll be glad to share techniques.

HZ

Howard Zane
  • Member since
    June, 2007
  • From: Northern Virginia
  • 4,912 posts
Posted by riogrande5761 on Friday, July 14, 2017 12:53 PM

I just took a quick spin at MBK's site to look at Walthers buildings and some of them appear to have foundations or simlulated foundations or both.

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

Contrarian's contrarian
  • Member since
    July, 2007
  • From: Massachusetts
  • 195 posts
Posted by Bundy74 on Friday, July 14, 2017 12:53 PM

I concur.  For most kits I've built in the past several years, foundations are easily added with 1/4" or 1/8" styrene strip glued to the bottom of each wall.  This can then be contoured to any topography.  

It also helps to put the buildings in first, then scenic up to them, which eliminates gaps.  

Modeling whatever I can make out of that stash of kits that takes up half my apartment's spare bedroom.

  • Member since
    March, 2015
  • 935 posts
Posted by SouthPenn on Friday, July 14, 2017 1:52 PM

I build my own foundations. Wink

South Penn
  • Member since
    October, 2007
  • From: Fullerton, California
  • 816 posts
Posted by hornblower on Friday, July 14, 2017 4:03 PM

Bear in mind that most slab-on-grade structures don't have deep foundations the way raised floor structures do.  Also note that the real beef with layout structures is air gaps between the bottom of the structure and the layout surface.  If caulking is used to glue down structures, the caulking will fill in any air gaps making the structure looks more like it is anchored IN the ground than ON the ground.  Paint, ground cover and landscaping can then be used to make the caulking look like dirt.

Hornblower

Moderator
  • Member since
    May, 2009
  • From: Waukesha, WI
  • 1,076 posts
Posted by Steven Otte on Friday, July 14, 2017 4:27 PM

I just built an industry for MR's 2018 project layout, the N scale Canadian Canyons, consisting of several structures. The main building, which includes a metal-sheathed section made from a Pikestuff kit, I added a concrete foundation to. But the vehicle shed, which I'm modeling with an open garage door, does not. It will have a thin slab inside, which will probably not be visible on the outside. So, the answer is, it depends on the situation.

--
Steven Otte, Model Railroader associate editor
sotte@kalmbach.com

  • Member since
    June, 2007
  • From: Northern Virginia
  • 4,912 posts
Posted by riogrande5761 on Friday, July 14, 2017 4:29 PM

Bundy74

I concur.  For most kits I've built in the past several years, foundations are easily added with 1/4" or 1/8" styrene strip glued to the bottom of each wall.  This can then be contoured to any topography.  

It also helps to put the buildings in first, then scenic up to them, which eliminates gaps.  

So are you going to build a layout in that basement before you cover it up! 

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

Contrarian's contrarian
  • Member since
    December, 2015
  • 2,117 posts
Posted by BigDaddy on Friday, July 14, 2017 5:32 PM

Howard Zane
I have built foundations for all of my buildings as 80% are mounted on grades and I can attest to the fact that it is simple to do. If interested, just contact me, and I'll be glad to share techniques. HZ

Teaser? 

I've seen Howard's layout and none of could go wrong serving an apprenticeship in Howard's basement. 

I can send you and email, but why not share with the forum?

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

  • Member since
    January, 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 7,596 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Friday, July 14, 2017 8:35 PM

Basements or foundations, as appropriate...

Wayne

  • Member since
    February, 2005
  • From: Vancouver Island, BC
  • 20,899 posts
Posted by selector on Friday, July 14, 2017 9:14 PM

Geez.  How come we never see your layout in the MR, Wayne?  You have answered this before, but.............................................really.

  • Member since
    January, 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 7,596 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Saturday, July 15, 2017 12:43 AM

 

selector

Geez.  How come we never see your layout in the MR, Wayne?  You have answered this before, but.............................................really.

 
Thanks for your kind comments, Crandell. Embarrassed
 
Well, I think I'd have to submit some photos, but my guess is that so many folks here have already seen them, they probably wouldn't help sell too many magazines.
Besides that, there's lots of layout definitely not ready for its close-up.

I'll probably squeeze in as much as possible here before my photobucket account is collapsed at the end of 2018, but that will probably be the end of it for me.
 
Wayne
  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 7,666 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Saturday, July 15, 2017 1:48 AM

I have to agree with Howard's point. Having a gap where a foundation should be is not good modelling. It is one of those things I notice but I try to keep my mouth shut. Some of you will be amazed that I actually do try to shut up sometimes!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaugh

Dave

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: Huntsville, AR
  • 868 posts
Posted by oldline1 on Saturday, July 15, 2017 9:55 AM

I have to agree that houses with gps between them and the scenery just ruins the whole effect.

One other thing that drives me crazy (very short trip!) is when the structure isn't plumb. Is it really THAT difficult to place a building on the layout and have it sitting plumb?

oldline1

  • Member since
    January, 2009
  • 2,257 posts
Posted by RR_Mel on Saturday, July 15, 2017 11:44 AM

Like Howard I make foundations for all of my structures.  I use ⅛” basswood (double layer 1/16” basswood for easy splicing) the same size as the structure and put it in place before setting the structures in place.  Very few of my layout ground areas are level so a contoured foundation is needed.  I don’t like non level structures either so I make sure the basswood base is level and securely anchored.  I contour the foundation as needed.
 
As stated in the above posts I fill any gaposis with an appropriate foundation material, normally Plastruct Pattern brick or rock sheets.  For light weight structures stained basswood piers work out pretty good too.
 
When the base or foundation is completed I drill a ½” to ¾” hole for wires for lighting.  Where a hole through the layout doesn’t work out I run plastic tubing (¼” to ½” rain dip) as conduit during construction.  I learned early on that fixed or inaccessible wiring is a no no for trouble shooting and future modifications.  Modifications on my layout are 365/24 year after year.  The ½” tubing will pass a 16 pin micro connector thus eliminating soldering in tough to get at places.
 
 
Mel
 
Modeling the early to mid 1950s SP in HO scale since 1951
             
 
My Model Railroad   
 
Bakersfield, California
 
I'm beginning to realize that aging is not for wimps.
  • Member since
    December, 2004
  • From: Bedford, MA, USA
  • 17,355 posts
Posted by MisterBeasley on Monday, July 17, 2017 1:08 PM

I have a lot of single-family homes from City Classics, IHC and Model Power, and most of them do come with foundations.  I typically don't see foundations on urban building kits, but I always put a sheet styrene sidewalk around them, right against the building, so the base is covered.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 488 posts
Posted by Howard Zane on Monday, July 17, 2017 1:54 PM

! was referring to a real foundation down to at least 8 scale feet so model may be mounted or planted on a grade. Several of my buildings are mounted on grades as steep as 30% thus requiring an even deeper foundation. I am modeling rather mountainous terrain...........my original pike was flat as I began modeling the SP (T&NO) in Louisanna. Easier? You bet! Boring? Same answer!

HZ

Howard Zane
  • Member since
    October, 2001
  • From: OH
  • 15,897 posts
Posted by BRAKIE on Monday, July 17, 2017 2:10 PM

hon30critter

I have to agree with Howard's point. Having a gap where a foundation should be is not good modelling. It is one of those things I notice but I try to keep my mouth shut. Some of you will be amazed that I actually do try to shut up sometimes!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaugh

Dave

 

And sadly I've seen a lot of other wise great layouts in MR that had gaps around the builings or water tank.

Larry

SSRy

Conductor

  • Member since
    August, 2006
  • From: Saskatchewan
  • 2,108 posts
Posted by last mountain & eastern hogger on Monday, July 17, 2017 10:59 PM

[quote user="Howard Zane"]

! was referring to a real foundation down to at least 8 scale feet so model may be mounted or planted on a grade. Several of my buildings are mounted on grades as steep as 30% thus requiring an even deeper foundation. I am modeling rather mountainous terrain...........my original pike was flat as I began modeling the SP (T&NO) in Louisanna. Easier? You bet! Boring? Same answer!

HZ

 Whistling
Hello Howard,
I sent you a couple of PMs.
hope to hear from you soon.
Johnboy out...................

from Saskatchewan, in the Great White North.. 

We have met the enemy,  and he is us............ (Pogo)

  • Member since
    October, 2001
  • From: OH
  • 15,897 posts
Posted by BRAKIE on Tuesday, July 18, 2017 6:16 AM

BigDaddy
I've seen Howard's layout and none of could go wrong serving an apprenticeship in Howard's basement.

Think I would rather serve an apprenticeship in Wayne's basement.Yeah.    I've seen videos of Howard's layout on You Tube.. 

Wayne's layout in MR should be a given.

Larry

SSRy

Conductor

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 488 posts
Posted by Howard Zane on Tuesday, July 18, 2017 9:29 AM

Larry aka Brakie......

I have never seen anything on your pike, so acceptance for an apprenticeship would be a huge question mark.

HZ

Howard Zane
  • Member since
    October, 2001
  • From: OH
  • 15,897 posts
Posted by BRAKIE on Tuesday, July 18, 2017 10:37 AM

Howard Zane

Larry aka Brakie......

I have never seen anything on your pike, so acceptance for an apprenticeship would be a huge question mark.

HZ

 

You need not to worry about that..I wouldn't apply for a apprenticeship.

I might consider taking you on as a student brakeman though after you take and pass operation and safety courses...

Larry

SSRy

Conductor

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 488 posts
Posted by Howard Zane on Tuesday, July 18, 2017 10:57 AM

 

Would that be as complicated as taking you on as a flight student up through an ATP rating (airliner)?

I do not know you, but you tossed the first shot. I'd seriously recommend ending this stupid conversation as I will do.

HZ

Howard Zane
  • Member since
    October, 2001
  • From: OH
  • 15,897 posts
Posted by BRAKIE on Tuesday, July 18, 2017 11:19 AM

Howard Zane
I do not know you, but you tossed the first shot.

That I saw your layout video on you tube and left it at that?  Nothing bad there.

I just perfer the looks of Wayne's layout and would love to see it up close and personal. The same applies to Lance Mindheim's layout.

Larry

SSRy

Conductor

Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!
Popular on ModelRailroader.com
Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Search the Community

ADVERTISEMENT
Find us on Facebook