🌲 Modelling Trees, Tunnels And A Superb Simpson's Diorama

🌲 Modelling Trees, Tunnels And A Superb Simpson's Diorama

Morning gang!

How's things? Hope you've had an amazing week… We've had a rather glorious week down here in the South West weather wise this week. Not too hot, but plenty of lovely sunshine… although as I'm sat at the dining table writing this on Friday evening it's turned into the more abundant, liquid variety we know and love!

So what have you been up to this week? Tina's mum & dad have been down, staying with us in Meva so we've been spending a few days doing the tourist thing, with a obligatory pasties, trip to the Minack Theatre for another marvel at the place… and quite a bit more lovely food in Newlyn & Falmouth. If you like your seafood and you're down in the Penzance/Newlyn area we'd highly recommend a visit to Mackerel Sky. It's like a seafood tapas bar and it's amazing! Reasonably priced and incredible food. We got there just before it opened at lunchtime and folks were already queuing up to get in!

We've also been cracking on with quite a bit of work as well as clocking up the Cornish miles… Tina and I have been busy testing a new potential product line and I've been working with Jess to firm up some of our plans for the coming months for the newsletter, website and other things. 

And being away from the office for a few days has given us both a little time to think and reflect on things… like why we actually do what we do… I don't mean “why on earth do we bother doing this?”… I mean, what's the real reason we spend most of our waking hours designing, developing and manufacturing all these building kits?

It's amazing, when you start to peel back the layers, constantly asking the question “why” over and over… all sorts of things are revealed. And I think one of the most important things we've realised over the years, as our building kits have developed, from the early days of cut & fold kits, is that we want you to be so unbelievably proud of what you've built! When we're designing the kits we're always picturing you guys, sitting back on your chair on completion of a kit, with a massive grin on your face thinking “I built that and it's flippin' amazing!”.

Ok, you might just be building one of our kits, like the KX074-OO Dylington Cottages, the same kit as your mate might be. But the way we design our kits is so that they can be easily personalised with just a handful of tiny tweaks during assembly. You don't need shed loads of model making experience to build them or put your stamp on them… if you can use a craft knife, a pair of scissors, cutting mat and a steel ruler. And as a bonus, can use a simple paintbrush to apply a bit of acrylic paint here an there and you're onto a winner. Add to that a couple of decent glues and you have all the tools and skills you need to achieve Realistically Better results. 

Something as simple as painting the doors and window frames in your own colour choices instantly makes the kit your own. Adding curtains behind the windows. Cutting chunks out of the roof tiles etc all add up to make a model completely unique to you… And to do that, you don't have to be a master modeller in any way, shape or form. Ok, our kits are nothing like a “standard” card kit… but they're not meant to be. They're wrapped for starters, so there are no visible card edges. By their very nature, they're going to need a little more time and patience to assemble. You're going to have to stick lots of bits of paper to lots of bits of wood, but we hope that as you experience building your first and subsequent SMS (Scale Model Scenery) kits, the reason why we do things the way we do them will become apparent and you'll hopefully be hooked on that Realistically Better finish!

The other reason we do it is in terms of architecture. The world is a right old mixed bag of colours, styles, shapes and sizes. In many towns and villages, the sheer number of different brick shades, types of stone and wall render are so numerous it's crazy! So instead of building a layout that's all the same… we hope you'll mix & match things a bit! Ok a couple of rows of terraced houses will probably be made from the same brick. But I'll bet you any money, down the road from those is a detached house made from a totally different type of brick. And that stands next to something made of concrete or stone… That's why we try to vary our brick & brick and stone shades from model to model. Sometimes the variations are subtle… but we don't want you to build a town or village where all the buildings look the same as each other… or the same as your mates layout for that matter… A layout is an individual thing… So, through giving you a varied choice of finishes across the range, as well as a growing number of styles of buildings, you can build a layout that's as individual as you are! You're one in a million… and that's exactly how your layout should be. 

Now… if you haven't yet built one of our kits and don't know which would be a good one to start with, but you're kinda tempted to have a go… don't be shy… Put your hand up and drop us a note in the comments below with an idea of the region and era you're thinking of modelling and we'll put together some suggestions for kits to start your journey to a Realistically Better layout.

And that was a much longer introduction that I planned this morning… but hopefully that all makes sense! And with that…

In the meantime, it's over to young Sam for this weekend's videos.

Good morning! It seems like the Summer is in full swing and I hope you are making the most of it. Have you had a good week? Let me know. Justin has been away most of the week, so the rest of the team and I have been holding down the fort. This week has been productive, Jess is still getting the hang of things and she's been super helpful with giving me some structure and guidance. These village signs are still in the works, I've been making sure they are the best quality possible and I want you guys to have various customization options. I've also had some nice phone calls with a few of you! 

We've had some brilliant images sent in so keep them coming. You can send these via the help desk, my email (sam@scalemodelscenery.co.uk) or the RailwayModellers community. Thank you so much to everyone who has sent them in so far.

Interesting Builds

Here's a video from a channel that I discovered recently - Horsehay Railway Modeller. David has a fantastic layout and regularly posts update videos as well as photos (on his RMWeb thread which can be found in his channel description). This video is great as he takes us through his thought process. I found it interesting how he adds extra scatter to the seafoam trees to flesh them out a bit. He also stacks a few trees on top of each other which looks great. The corner section looks brilliant, so full of life.

Next, I've got a video coming from Elle Towan AKA Boulder Creek Railroad. You should all be familiar with her channel by now as I've featured it many times. In this, Elle creates the Kwik-E-Mart as a part of their ongoing series of making The Simpsons dioramas. She says, "Fill anyone over the age of 35 with nostalgia" Little does she know that I'm 21 and feel extremely nostalgic about The Simpsons. I remember being about 10 years old and watching it on Channel 4 at 6 pm.

Antiques Roadshow

In the past, I've featured Archive videos from BBC and other channels. You seem to enjoy watching them and so do I! So here's a couple of clips from the Antiques Roadshow.

First of all, we have 2 gentlemen who bring in an old Hornby train collection. Reading the comments hurts my head. How can people not tell this wasn't filmed recently? It also says in the description "This clip was filmed in Blackpool in 2000." AND right at the beginning of the video, it says in the top right corner "Antiques Roadshow (2000)". Sorry for the rant - if you have any idea how much this is worth now, I'd love to hear it!

Filmed in 1990, a woman brings in a train set that she bought for her son. Hilary informs the woman that this was in fact one of the first trains that Hornby produced and could fetch up to £400. I tried having a look for some online but they seem far and few between, there are a couple of similar models going for anywhere from £300-£1k. Like the previous video, who knows how much it would be worth nowadays? I did read in the comments people speculate that it may be worth less now.

Unfortunately, I'm going to keep the Newsletter videos to 4 a week - so that means no exhibition coverage this time. However, if you want information on upcoming events, I'd highly recommend you click here.

Right and with that, we have come to the end of the videos. As always, I hope you enjoyed them! Are you a content creator or know someone who could feature in this? Feel free to send them my way via my email, sam@scalemodelscenery.co.uk . Let me know what you thought about these in the comments below. I'd also love to know if any of you can put a price on those old trainsets. Have a great rest of your weekend.

New Stuff

Just the one new thing this week and it's the first limited edition thingy we've ever done… The pigsty is done… but that will be available on general release from next Friday as I've still got to polish up the instructions.

So… limited edition thing… 

Product Collections…

Stu's also been working on improving our product collection pages again, helping you find what you need quicker. This week, it's this one that's received and bit of tweakage…

OO Scale Shops & Offices

Right, that's about it for this edition of the weekly news. We're just about to give Tina's mum & dad a lift to the station. Elizabeth is heading down into the village to do her Saturday shift in the gift shop. And as she's working this weekend, so are we… so once Tina's mum & dad are safely on the train, we'll be heading to HQ to crack on with a myriad of things including catching up on emails from during the week and getting stuck in on another project.

Have an amazing weekend folks… And of course…

Keep on shunting…

Justin, Tina, Elizabeth, Lola & The Team

P.S. This weekend's header pic comes from Railway Modellers Club Champion and top poster, Jeg_60. Turns out today was bin day in Dylington. Guess who forgot to put them out again!

The eagle-eyed among you might be able to spot a few of our kits in this scene:

P.P.S. Missed a newsletter? You can read all of our recent newsletters online here.

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I recently took apart my layout, I wanted/needed to start afresh.

The new layout will(hopefully) be a rural one, so it'll have cottages, farm buildings, old buildings and a scrapped loco siding.

I have been buying kits and equipment for the project, but advice is what I need - landscaping, weathering etc.

Any advice and ideas will be most welcome.



Horsehay Railway - Dave says about orange aspects on signals - they are yellow!

Thanks the other week for my birthday discount. No other companies that I shop with do that at all. Not even the big name ones!

Cheers Justin

Thank you for your emails.

My piggy bank is empty at the moment.

Hope to fill up in a couple of months.

I will start building my model railway later this year.

Thanks Tony