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"Mountains in Minutes" flex rock

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"Mountains in Minutes" flex rock
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:03 AM
Good morning folks! I just wondered if anyone had a link where I could learn more about Mountains-in-Minutes Flex Rock. Or if anyone had any experience with this product.

Thanks
Rick
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Posted by MisterBeasley on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:27 AM
Are you thinking of the stuff where the "rocks" themselves are actually made of latex rubber, or a product where you make your own molds using liquid latex and then casting?

I did see some pre-made, pre-painted latex rubber rock walls at the Big E show in Springfield, MA, this weekend. They looked pretty good, and the price was reasonable. They didn't fit in with anything I was trying to model, though.

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Posted by cwclark on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:32 AM
I don't know about the flex rock but mountain in minutes is some really messy stuff to work with and is uncontrollable when the mountains foam up...I heard about this one guy that mixed too much together at one time, and it foamed up so much, that it forced him from the train room..he was conviced that he could build a mountain from floor to ceiling in one pour and he must'a mixed about 50 containers of the two part stuff together at one time...sounds unbelievible to me ..but i've seen or heard of humans doing other equally stupid things in the past before...chuck

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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:35 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by MisterBeasley

Are you thinking of the stuff where the "rocks" themselves are actually made of latex rubber, or a product where you make your own molds using liquid latex and then casting?


MisterBeasley:
I believe thats what these are. I saw them referenced in a MR article last month. It was a rather vague reference stating that they were lightweight and all that it said was that it was a "Mountains-in-Minutes Flex Rock". I'm trying to find more info and a google search does not yield very good results. Trying to find the manufacturer so I can look at their website and learn more. [:)]

Rick
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:40 AM
Yeah, I'd like info on the stuff. It was referenced in the Stony Creek article, but nothing other than the name.

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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, January 30, 2006 9:54 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by kchronister

Yeah, I'd like info on the stuff. It was referenced in the Stony Creek article, but nothing other than the name.


Exactly! ANY infor would be appreciated!
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Posted by MisterBeasley on Monday, January 30, 2006 10:20 AM
I'm trying to get some vendor information from the Springfield show organizers. I'll let you know if I find anything. Unfortunately, I don't have a vendor list or flooplan myself, so I'm hoping they can send me something.

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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, January 30, 2006 10:23 AM
Thanks MisterBeasley!
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Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, February 08, 2006 11:04 PM
Folks:

All I could find so far is that the scenery express website has a product that may be what they're talking about in the January Stony Creek article in MRR:

http://www.sceneryexpress.com/products.asp?dept=1090

They only show three different pieces (perhaps thats all there is!) and no manufacturer information is given. I'd still love to find information on the manufacturer and the web address so any help would be great!

Rick
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Posted by loathar on Thursday, February 09, 2006 12:54 AM
I too saw this article and went WHAT!!! Mountains in Minutes was a really crappy product that came out in the 70's. It was vermiculite and some type of plaster mixed up in a milk carton type of container.YUCK!!! It almost made me stop modeling trains!!!
I think what you are talking about is a different product. I can't beleive they're calling it a bad name from the past.....
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:21 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by loathar

I too saw this article and went WHAT!!! Mountains in Minutes was a really crappy product that came out in the 70's.


Loathar: I've heard that from others on here as well as some of the sites I 'googled' to find information. I'm not sure if "Mountains-in-Minutes" is associated with the old stuff or not, but the actual product they're talking about seems to be the 'flexrock' ? (I think)

Still trying to get a bead on who the manufacturer is and what their selection is like. From the MRR article and the information (albeit scant) I found online - looks like 'FlexRock' might be a neat alternative to check out since it is flexible and seems to be well modeled (from the small pictures its hard to tell).

Again, any info that anyone has that gives more detail, or a web or physical address of the company that makes FlexRock (the article leads on to believe that it's a company called "Mountains in Minutes") would be appreciated!

Thanks all
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Posted by cwclark on Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:29 AM
I saw it too in the stoney creek article in MRRer..but what is it?...I don't have a clue!..chuck

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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:32 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by cwclark

I saw it too in the stoney creek article in MRRer..but what is it?...I don't have a clue!..chuck


I found the stuff in my 2005 Wathers book. But little info there. Seems to be from the Mountains in Minutes folks, and consists of three different rock formations in a sheet that is flexible... What it's made of, how large they are, etc. I have no idea.
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Posted by dommegr on Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:44 AM
This stuff sounds pretty neat. I doubt I would use it myself at this point but it really does sound like a time saver. I copied and paster the specs from the web link posted a few posts up.

Flex Canyon Wall:

These unique rocks are duplicates of actual highly detailed rock formations, molded in semi-ridged urethane foam (foam rubber). They are designed for all scales, and can be bent concave or convex to follow any curve. Castings may be easily cut with scissors or hobby knife. The castings include modeling and painting instructions. Preweathered with a light, natural brown tone, these castings may be used as is, or detailed as you would conventional rock castings. Latex or acrylic paints recommended. Canyon Wall highly details Eastern Limestone striation outcropping and is ideal for New England and Eastern United States. 17" W x 7½" H x 1½" thick.

Flexrock Embankment Wall:

These unique rocks are duplicates of actual highly detailed rock formations, molded in semi-ridged urethane foam (foam rubber). They are designed for all scales, and can be bent concave or convex to follow any curve. Castings may be easily cut with scissors or hobby knife. The castings include modeling and painting instructions. Preweathered with a light, natural brown tone, these castings may be used as is, or detailed as you would conventional rock castings. Latex or acrylic paints recommended. Embankment Wall highly detailsAllegheny Shale outcropping and is ideal for Appalachian and Eastern United States. 17"W x 7½" H x 1½" thick.

Flexrock Granite Wall:

These unique rocks are duplicates of actual highly detailed rock formations, molded in semi-ridged urethane foam (foam rubber). They are designed for all scales, and can be bent concave or convex to follow any curve. Castings may be easily cut with scissors or hobby knife. The castings include modeling and painting instructions. Preweathered with a light, natural brown tone, these castings may be used as is, or detailed as you would conventional rock castings. Latex or acrylic paints recommended. Granite Wall highly details hard metamorphic granite outcropping and is ideal for Rocky Mountains and Midwestern United States. 17"W x 7½" H x 1½" thick.
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Posted by ereimer on Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:58 AM
this is another of those products for people who want everything to be RTR and don't care how much money they have to throw at a project to get it done . $18 for 17"x7.5" ? i bet you can buy a lot of plaster and rock molds for that

it is a neat idea , just too expensive for me . maybe someone who is building a small diorama and will only need a couple of pieces
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, February 09, 2006 10:22 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by ereimer

...i bet you can buy a lot of plaster and rock molds for that


ereimer:

Being a 'renturnee' to the hobby after 30 some odd years, I am continually amazed at the products out there and although I have been reading, reading, reading and asking questions to come back up to speed (I think that's a lifetime project ::grinning::), I have always wondered about the rock molds. Wouldn't use of the molds tend to make various rock outcroppings, walls, etc tend to look the same? Please forgive if this is a dumb question - I'm just not real familiar with the molds. Are they as 'long' as the flexrock parts?

Rick
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, June 25, 2006 8:28 PM
This product is not made any more. It was made by I.S.L.E Laboratories in Blissfield Michigan. But if any one some extra that they want to get rid of let me know
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Posted by devils on Monday, June 26, 2006 12:40 AM
I'd searched unsuccessfully for this stuff as I didn't want the weight of solid plaster castings as my layout is portable. I've been using woodland scenics rock molds with DAS modelling clay rolled out ,about 3-5mm thick, and pushed into the mold, it can be peeled out and I brush some scenic glue on the back and form it over the shapes I've carved into the foam. I use a piece of rubber from an outcropping mold to push it down, this adds some changes to the look and avoids finger prints.
If you don't have DAS mopdelling clay find a clay that's not too sticky or you'll never get it out of the mold, look at clays sold for kids or crafts. Stain in the same way as normal plaster, you'll find a 1kg pack covers about 24" by 12" or more if you keep it really thin.
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Posted by fsm1000 on Monday, June 26, 2006 8:51 AM
I know of this stuff only because i have done some construction work.
It is an expanding insulative foam. That's it.
If you are going to use it in molds you HAVE to add a silicone type product to the mold otherwise it will stick to it and destroy the mold. While expensive, you can use a product called "Aromor All' for cars. Make sure you get the kind with silicone in it. It is a vnyl cleaner and protector. It might be called something different where you are. Get it Canadian tire or an automotive store.

Spray the mold thoroughly. Almost thickly. After it dries you add the mountain in minutes or insulative foam into the mold.

If it is slow acting [you can get different kinds] you cn use a bru***o push it gently into the crevices.
It will take about 3 tries before you can start to give a good guessimate of how much you need.

If you go to a home depot [or other large building supply place] you may be able to get a good deal on insulative expanding foam.
It is the same thing.

Just remember to spray on the mold release, the silicone each time.
You will only forget once LOL
And DON'T worry about putting in too much. It may make a mess but it won't destroy your house. LOL

Also do it over newspaper or such.
I hope that helps you guys out.
My name is Stephen and I want to give back to this great hobby. So please pop over to my website and enjoy the free tutorials. If you live near me maybe we can share layouts. :) Have fun and God bless. http://fsm1000.googlepages.com
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Posted by nucat78 on Monday, June 26, 2006 9:08 AM
dommegr has the details. I've seen one example at a LHS. Multiscale, sort of a brownish yellow color to my eyes but paintable and quite flexible. It's not cheap.

Anybody try filling WS rock molds with acrylic caulk or expanding foam for rocks? Should be much lighter than plaster. You'd probably need some kind of mold release agent though.
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Posted by MisterBeasley on Monday, June 26, 2006 9:24 AM
If weight is the issue, you might want to look into "Geodesic Foam" by Bragdon Enterprises:

www.bragdonent.com

I've seen this on layouts, and with good painting it is positively convincing. I actually had to touch it to determine whether or not it was real rock. Once again, though, it's more expensive than simple Hydrocal casting.

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Posted by cacole on Monday, June 26, 2006 9:51 AM
According to pages 98 through 106 of the Scenic Express Catalog #13, Flexrock is made by a company called Terrain Systems, not Mountains in Minutes. Flexrock is described as "duplicates of actual highly detailed rock formations, moulded in semi-rigid urethane foam (Foam Rubber)."

A 17-inch long, 7.5-inch high, 1.5-inch thick casting is $18.98 plus shipping.

http://www.scenicexpress.com
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Posted by Dave Vollmer on Monday, June 26, 2006 10:07 AM
QUOTE: this is another of those products for people who want everything to be RTR and don't care how much money they have to throw at a project to get it done

ereimer


No it's not. I'm using the flexrocks on my layout because:

1. They're lighter
2. They won't chip like plaster can
3. They provide a higher relief than I've ever had luck with getting using plaster and molds
4. Unlike plaster castings, they're flexible, and can fit, for example, in a curved rock cut.

One sheet purchased at a LHS for $16 did all the rocks on my 36"x80" N scale central PA layout. Granted, in a larger scale with a larger layout, or a western theme with more rocks, it would surely be a larger investment. But, for a PORTABLE layout that needs to be light and resilient, you can't beat it. Hoorah for Mountains in Minutes!

Click here to go to Dave Vollmer's N Scale Pennsy

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Posted by jeffers_mz on Monday, June 26, 2006 4:44 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by cwclark

I don't know about the flex rock but mountain in minutes is some really messy stuff to work with and is uncontrollable when the mountains foam up...I heard about this one guy that mixed too much together at one time, and it foamed up so much, that it forced him from the train room..he was conviced that he could build a mountain from floor to ceiling in one pour and he must'a mixed about 50 containers of the two part stuff together at one time...sounds unbelievible to me ..but i've seen or heard of humans doing other equally stupid things in the past before...chuck


Classic...utterly classic, thanks for the laugh.

In boatbuilding book I have, they warn that this stuff can expand dangerously. They recommend it for insulating between a plastic shell and your cabinet work to make an icebox, but make it clear that too much of the stuff will expand till the boatt's fiberglass hull cracks. I guess it's better to err and use too little than too much.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 24, 2006 9:05 AM

http://www.sceneryexpress.com/prodinfo.asp?number=MM0502

This is the EXACT product in the issue. Look at the two. Identical in everything. As for the Mountains in Minutes...well...as an educated guess with product numbers on order forms, generally speaking alot of the time you put the initial(s) or abbreviation of the manufacturer somewhere in the number. I see an MM in the product number. Just a educated guess, but I think it is from the same folks at Mountains in Minutes.

http://kc.pennsyrr.com/layouts/dvollmer/

In this article it is also again refered to as Mountains in Minutes Flexrock.

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Posted by Dave Vollmer on Thursday, August 24, 2006 9:51 AM
 JokerCM wrote:

http://www.sceneryexpress.com/prodinfo.asp?number=MM0502

This is the EXACT product in the issue. Look at the two. Identical in everything. As for the Mountains in Minutes...well...as an educated guess with product numbers on order forms, generally speaking alot of the time you put the initial(s) or abbreviation of the manufacturer somewhere in the number. I see an MM in the product number. Just a educated guess, but I think it is from the same folks at Mountains in Minutes.

http://kc.pennsyrr.com/layouts/dvollmer/

In this article it is also again refered to as Mountains in Minutes Flexrock.

Yep, that's my website.  The package I purchased it in clearly said "Mountains in Minutes."

Here's what it looks like painted:

Click here to go to Dave Vollmer's N Scale Pennsy

America's Broad Way of Commerce...The Standard Railroad of the World

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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 24, 2006 10:42 AM
I didn't even pay attention to the names. I feel like almost embarrassed now. But anyways, those look really nice. I am thinking very seriously about using them on my upcoming layout. I haven't built one in about 7 years, and like mentioned previously. I am even amazed at the leap forward in layout contruction. I went to the hobby store over the winter last year and as chatting. They told me about the use of Styrofoam insulation for landscaping. I was like..."huh". And after reading up more and more. I like it. Previously also there was a comment about people no wanting everything RTR. I think people don't want everythign RTR. Just somethings to shorten certain areas of building. Like in this case, mountains/rock formations. I hated having to spend weeks and hearing complaints from the wife while I was making casts out of Hydrocal. Then, having to spend more time carving them to fit where I needed them. I am inspired when I see things like in the April edition of MMR the 200 hours it took to make the wooden bridge. That is where I myself would rather spend my time, on projects like that. Anyways, Dave, your layout looks wonderful. Great work !
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 24, 2006 10:56 AM

I used the spray foam used for housing insulation (the small expansion one).  My mountain kept growing for over 2 years...  If this stuff is anything like the house insulation stuff, you'll be patching cracks and holes for a while.  Just my 2c.

However, the plus side was it was extremely easy to use.  just mold out the tunnel and use some crumpled paper for a general form and spray the foam all over.  Once its "dry" then you can cut it to your desired shape and glue on rock molds.

I realize this isn't "mountains in minutes" but its another alternative.

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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 24, 2006 10:58 AM

Just got off the phone with the guys at Isle. They are very much in business and busy as all get up. I will be getting some information from them via fax this afternoon. Isle is the company that makes the Mountain in Minutes Flexrock. They also are the same company that made the old "Mountains in Minutes" products. From what I can tell is this is foam rubber. Meaning there isn't any "growing" issues. This is truly "mountains in minutes". On a side note, they also make halloween makes and stuff...They do not have a website as of this moment, but I am told they are working on it.

 

EDIT: Called them back to give them my fax information. Chatted alittle more with them. They are about 20 miles north of me. They invited me up to the plant for a tour. I will update this more this afternoon when I actually recieve the fax. And more than likely when I get back from the tour, tomorrow.

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Posted by jwar on Thursday, August 24, 2006 12:29 PM
I would really look at the mold to see if it can be turned in different directions so that it does not have a overlapping effect. Another Product to look at is Bragdons Geodesic scenery, I started another thread as it was a tad off topic on this one....John
John Warren's, Feather River Route WP and SP in HO

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