Beacon Hill: Single Windows

3 Comments

The single windows of the Beacon Hill are pretty straightforward. I remember when putting together the Fairfield, I couldn’t make the windows look decent, so I purchased Houseworks windows, but I like how they designed the Beacon Hill ones. They’ve made them so you can paint the parts different colors for a nice contrast.

img_7357

The pieces: 3 sill parts (the short, horizontal ones), 3 top trim parts, two window sashes (the ones with the crosspiece), two exterior trim pieces (side by side on the left), the outside sill trim piece, and the interior trim (on the right).

img_7358

I labeled the sill and top trim pieces to keep them separate. They are actually the same size, it turned out, so if you get them mixed up it’s ok–as long as you have a small, medium, and large of each.

img_7359

The sill pieces ready to go in on my dry run (I highly recommend a dry run before you start painting and gluing!) The pieces go in this order: 1) small 2) medium, 3) large

img_7360

The smallest sill piece in place on the bottom of the window. I had to enlarge the notches a little with a needle file.

img_7361

Medium sill piece goes on top of small.

img_7363

Large sill piece on top.

img_7364

What it looks like edge on.

img_7365

The top trim pieces are the same, except they go on 1) large, 2) medium, 3) small.

img_7366

The large top trim in place.

img_7368

Edge on so you can see large, medium, small.

img_7372

Sashes. The clear window plastic will go between these.

img_7373

Taped together for the dry run.

img_7374

Sash set in place (not glued yet).

img_7371

The narrower exterior trim piece goes on top of the thicker one.

img_7375

The exterior piece taped together for the dry run and put in place over the window sash.

img_7376

The sill trim piece goes here.

img_7377

The whole thing.

img_7385

Now to paint. I decided to paint the exterior sash the red to go with my color scheme.

img_7382

The exterior trim painted and glued together.

img_7383

The edges of the trim are rough, so I spackled and sanded to get a more even surface.

img_7386

The plastic sheet of window panes. The amazing thing is that in all the years of this kit sitting in my closet–I didn’t lose the plastic sheet! It hasn’t been inside the box for ages. A miracle.

img_7387

I’ve glued in the painted sills and top trim pieces.

img_7388

The two sash pieces are glued together with the plastic sheet sandwiched in between. The sash is now glued into the window opening. It should fit exactly–if not, sand the opening (another reason to do a dry run first).

img_7389

The exterior trim on the window, and the sill piece glued below. It needs a little sanding and finishing (this kit has many raw edges), but the window is complete. (I will do the interior trim when I finish the interior).

img_7390

First window complete. The red of the sash picks up the red in the porch trim.

img_7398

The tower window done as well.

img_7418

All three front windows in place. This is starting to look like a house!

Next post–the kitchen bay window.

Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas!

2 Comments

MiniChristmas2 Christmasfull

Merry Christmas!! May there be many minis under your tree!

Beacon Hill: Mansard Roof Trim

3 Comments

The mansard roof trim is pretty straightforward. First it’s best to punch out and label all the pieces according to the schematic sheet. (There is both horizontal and vertical trim.) I used a sharpie to write the names on the back–the backs won’t show once the pieces are glued on.

img_7340 img_7341

Notice the each of the curved mansard trim pieces form a pair, one curved right and one left. (These look like cartoon palm trees to me :-))

img_7347

Also note that there is a definite top and bottom to each pair. The top has a more square angle, the bottom is more angular. The squarer end goes at the top against the top roof trim.

First, the straight pieces go horizontally across the top of the roof on the right side of the house, and vertically on the front against the tower as here:

img_7346

The horizontal top trim piece on the right side of the house and the vertical piece on the back.

img_7351

Now for the curved pieces. Note how the squarer end goes against the horizontal trim from the last step and ends at the bottom trim.

img_7350

I used plenty of tape to hold these pieces in place until the glue set.

img_7348

You’ll see I have an ugly gap. This is because the pieces don’t compensate for the thickness of the shingles. I have a layer of shingles and a layer of thin cardboard beneath it, which has distorted the dimensions of the roof.

I could have 1) compensated and only shingled to where the trim piece would fall; or 2) used sandpaper or paint to simulate shingles instead of using real ones.

Live and learn. I came up with a solution to fill the gap, which I’ll show later.

img_7345

The tower top horizontal pieces. Notice that two are longer–those are the side pieces. The front and back are the shorter ones.

Below you can see the tower top piece in place and the curved pieces.

img_7354

img_7353

The front with the curved pieces in place.

I pondered a lot about how to fill the gaps. Tear the shingles off and do it again? I’m not that diligent. This house is a learning experience more than anything else.

I rifled through my supplies and found some wood veneer strips I’d picked up from Cascade Miniatures (http://www.led-n-minis.com/) I lined them up in the gap and they don’t look too bad. Almost like that’s what I was supposed to do!

img_7397 img_7396

Hopefully others will find a better solution or not screw up like me!

You can see on the last picture that I’ve started putting in the windows. That’s next time!

 

Beacon Hill: Putting on the Exterior Trim

6 Comments

The next step in the Beacon Hill after the roof is to add the horizontal and vertical trim. First let’s get the rest of the roof on.

img_7290

Shingling the front tower piece on lightweight cardboard before gluing to house.

img_7292

The rest of the shingles set into place on the tower. Done!

Now for the horizontal and vertical trim. I had to pay close attention as there are no good photos or diagrams to follow in the instructions. But I got there.

img_7296

These are the horizontal pieces. From top to bottom we have right wall, right front wall, right front tower wall (the small one), and the tower back and front and tower sides. Note that the tower sides are each longer than the back and front pieces.

Note 2 The kitchen bay trim is also with this, but not in my picture, because I forgot about it. But best to paint those at the same time. There are 3 pieces for the kitchen bay horizontal trim (one long, two short).

I painted everything in my trim color (ivory).

img_7298

The pieces are glued on in this order: 1) right side.

img_7303

2) right front; and 3) right front tower (the small piece)

img_7307

4) Kitchen bay long trim

img_7321

5) Kitchen bay back and front horizontal trim (ignore the vertical for now). The back piece is longer than the front piece.

img_7305

6) The tower sides; then 7) the tower front and back.

img_7306

While that was drying, I decided to complete the roof. I’m using a piece of brown handmade paper here, tacking it in the corners. There is wiring on the roof, so if I need to fix anything, I can lift off the paper. It’s cheap paper so easily replaced.

Vertical Trim

Lots of pieces of these. I highly recommend finding them on the schematic drawings, punching them out, and labeling them with a sharpie on the back (make sure it’s the back! The back will be much rougher wood than the front).

img_7304

This photo is of all the vertical trim (plus the kitchen bay horizontal trim in the back, which I’d forgotten to paint with the others; hence it’s in this photo).

img_7308

I started with the right back trim–it’s a long piece that goes on the right edge of the right wall.

img_7354

Another piece goes on the left side of the right wall. Note: I skipped this for now (this is a later photo), because I needed to finish the copper on the kitchen bay roof–the vertical trim piece is cut at an angle to fit with the kitchen bay roof.

img_7309

The right front right trim has a notch that goes over the porch trim.

img_7310

Then a piece on the left side of the right front wall (with me so far?).

img_7314

Next the tower right trim.

Note–Because I cut the house in half, there is no vertical trim piece for the left side of the tower. If you put together the whole house, like a normal person, there is a short piece that fits on the left side of the tower and up against the mansard roof of the left wing.

img_7312

Vertical trim also goes on the right front wall bottom (on the porch), as does the right tower vertical trim. (Still with me?)

img_7313

When I asked, what about the right side of the porch? That’s covered by the Kitchen Bay Front vertical trim. Here’s the Kitchen Bay Front glued in place (taped until dry). Kitchen Bay Back goes on the same way, just in the back.

img_7321

Another shot of the kitchen bay with all trim in place.

Let me stop and cover the kitchen bay roof with copper. I bought copper sheeting from miniatures.com. Used the kitchen bay roof itself, unfolded, as a template.

img_6980

img_7317

Tip: It’s best to glue the roof on the house first then glue the copper sheet to it.

img_7315

Tip 2: Pre-crease the corners of the copper.

Tip 3: Use kleenex or wear gloves to handle so the oils in your skin don’t stain the copper.

img_7336

The copper roof in place. Now I can glue the vertical trim on the  wall above it.

Next, the corner blocks! The corner trim blocks are all on sheet 23, and for me, that’s the one that shattered.

img_7323

So, here I am back in the box / bags of the remnants of sheet 23. Amazingly, I found all twelve corner blocks.

img_7324

img_7325

Notice that each of these make a pair. Run the grain the same way on each part of the pair.

img_7326

img_7327

Painted my trim color.

The instructions say that these go in the “intersections of the horizontal and vertical trim on each wall.” Um. Ok. I stared t the house a while until I got it (no photos!)

img_7338

You can see the corner blocks at in place where horizontal and vertical trims meet.

I’m a bit puzzled why there are twelve. I understand where ten go: right wall, right front, tower front, left front (when I put the other side together), and left wall (when I put the other side together). That’s five walls, two each, equals ten. But two are left. Hmm. The photo of the house on the box doesn’t show me any other place to put the trim (and that photo only shows a limited view).

img_7336

More of the corner trim in place.

Because my house walls are warped, I have gaps in my trim. I’ll be filling that in later (trimming the trim).

Next time–The mansard roof trim.

 

Beacon Hill: Roof and Tower

4 Comments

Mansard Roof

Now that I have most of the lighting done, it’s time to tackle the roof. Looks complicated but is not.

img_7095

I notice that the kitchen side of this dollhouse is rarely photographed, so I’m trying to put out as many pics of it as I can, in case this helps other builders. This is the kitchen side with bay window on, bay window roof temporarily in place (I’m going to cover it with copper). Ready to put on the main roof.

img_7098

The mansard roof pieces are very thin, and bend back into place. The instructions with the kit are pretty good on this. I put glue all over the roof supports (see pic above for the supports), and on the bottom of the mansard piece and the top. Masking tape helps everything stay while the glue dries. (The window sill is there because I had to wire in the lamp before I put on the roof).

img_7099 img_7100

Putting the mansard roof piece on the front. Tacks help a little, but tape is best.

img_7106

Finished mansard roof on the kitchen side (there are only two sides to the roof on the kitchen half of the house). The brown stripe on it is me testing whether the color of stain will work (it’s Early American from Minwax).

img_7151

I’m using shingle strips for this house. Best to stain first.

img_7105

Before I put the roof pieces on, I traced them onto very thin cardboard. I’ll shingle the cardboard then glue the whole thing to the roof. Marked where the shingles strips will fall.

img_7107

Shingling begun. I found out (the hard way) that it’s better to cut the shingle pieces to length first than to try to cut out the hole in the middle for the window after gluing. Live and learn.

img_7149

The finished shingle sheets glued to the mansard roof. The ugly edges will be covered with trim.

Now for the Tower!

The tower is, in the kit, enclosed on four sides, but open on its bottom, so you could hang a chandelier from the very top and have it hang down to the third floor hall. Cool. But, of course, I wanted to change it.

I am interested in astronomy, so decided I’d create a little observatory up there. That means I need a floor for the tower and also to open one of the walls so we can see in. Already found a telescope for it.

img_7114

This is the back wall, which I will cut for the opening into the tower.

img_7115

The piece cut.

img_7119

The four tower walls assembled–the walls each have a large tab on their bottom edge that slide into the large square opening in the tower base (ignore the small slots for the moment).

img_7120

Because I want this to be a room, I had to put a floor back in. I took the piece that I punched out of the middle of the tower base and trimmed it down to slide it back in. You have to take out that piece at first, because the walls fit inside the opening it leaves behind.

 

img_7124

This is the underside of the tower. I have to cover the crease of the fitted-in floor piece and also support it. I cut four strips of 1/2″ wide wood and glued it on the seam of the floor on the underside of the tower (which will be the third-floor ceiling), using the decorative squares to make it look pretty.

img_7131

Here is the underside of the tower painted and ready to go.

img_7122

I went ahead and wallpapered the inside, because I knew I’d never fit the paper after finishing the tower. The floor will be covered with flooring later.

 

img_7136

I also wanted to hang a light in the third floor hall. This is an old light I had in the Big House, in the attic. I worried that it would be too long for the lower ceilings of this house, but the tower pokes up above the ceiling height of the third floor. Perfect!

img_7123

The tower on, ready to be glued in place. The instructions have you finish the roof first, but I wanted to wire in the light, and I couldn’t put the trim piece on until the wiring was done, but you have to put the trim piece on to support the roof sides. Clear? (Took me a while to figure out the sequence–cut wall, glue tower together, insert floor, support floor, put in light, glue tower to house top, run tape wire to tower, wire light, put on trim, do the roof … whew!)

img_7140

Here, I’ve extended the tape wire to the tower room and wired in the lamp. Then I glued on the trim (a solid piece that goes around the four sides), which I painted first.

img_7144

Let there be light! It works! Yay!!!

img_7137

Here’s another departure. I didn’t want to put on the tower roof, because I want to be able to look down into the room–plus the tiny telescope users will want to tilt their refractor high and look at Orion and the Pleiades and find the Andromeda galaxy (I can never see that thing).

I wanted to use the roof trim, but not the roof top. The problem is, though, that the roof sits down on tabs, and if I didn’t use the roof top, the trim didn’t have a smooth surface to rest on. Rather than try to cut off the tabs, which would be difficult at this point, I used 1/8 square strips to even out the edges.

img_7147

Now to put the roof pieces on the tower, which is exactly like putting the mansard pieces on the house. I have lots of tape and clamps to help out.

img_7148

So, now the tower and its roof are on.

img_7150

I am now in the process of putting on the shingles, again gluing them to very thin cardboard pieces, which will then be glued to the mansard roof.

Next time–trimming!! We’re getting there!

 

Beacon Hill–Progress

5 Comments

I took some time away from building the exterior of the Beacon Hill to install more lights. Here’s one I made from jewelry findings from JAF / JAR plus the remnants of a Victorian chandelier I had hanging in The Big House.

img_7036

This was my first attempt to do a light without following instructions–I based it on ones I’d already done but adapted the findings for what I needed. The glass globes came off the old chandelier.

img_7082

I like how it turned out!

img_7080

Next, I finished the first-floor staircase by building a false door which looks like it leads either down to a basement or to a closet.

img_7075

Since I finished and wired the chandelier in the second-floor hallway, I was able to install flooring and the third floor landing railing.

img_7076

Another look at the second floor staircase and new chandelier.

img_7067

When I was in my yard, I noticed this perspective of the house through the window. I like how it looks, so now I’m contemplating leaving this side open. Of course, I’d loose wall space for furniture, but I’ll think about it.

img_7086

I wanted to put a lamp in the third floor room that will be a bedroom. I’d made this lamp some time ago just to see if I could, but had nowhere to put it. I had to find the window sill for the dormer window in the kit and finish it so I could wire the lamp through the sill and wire it in before I put on the roof.

I still have two more lights to do (kitchen and third floor hall), but I can put those in later.

img_7090

And of course, my assistants help with everything.

Halloween Interlude

Leave a comment

Since Halloween is nearly upon us, here’s a montage of some spooky things I’ve made in the past couple of years.

First is Ravenwood, a kit bought from Robin Betterley. All the house pieces and the art is in the kit–I supplied black paint (plus green, burnt umber, etc for aging), glue, varnish, and the bottles and book in the lower part. This is microscale (1:144) on top of a 1:12 scale cabinet (included in the kit).

img_7042 IMG_4045img_4047

Second: A one-inch scale room box I built and filled with things I made or collected. I kept saying “Skulls! Need more skulls!”

img_7048 img_7045 img_7046 img_7047

Happy Halloween!

Older Entries Newer Entries

%d bloggers like this: