Sunday, October 5, 2008

on the job - equipment

Trucks and cars are what we all are most familiar with since we see them everyday when we get into our own vehicle to ride to work, play or errand. It isn't a rare thing to see the equipment used for work being transported by trailer so we recognize many of the pieces I'm about to show, but don't take the time to look carefully at them. Most prominent among them would be earthmoving equipment since we can also see this type of vehicle as we wait to be flagged through a road construction/repair project. No comment on the number of workers it takes to dig a trench here. Among them backhoes play an important role in getting unwanted material into dumps and away from the job site. The small backhoe above is a European version in the Liebherr 912, a plastic model from Wiking. This is a good example of why I prefer to weather the metal blades like the bucket above on a piece as I do, instead of trying to wear paint off to metal in the case of a diecast or white metal piece. The technique of painting first with an appropriate color and then adding the metal look to it can be done with virtually any material be it plastic wood or even paper. Hence I use it for everything with the same consistent results.

Here's another example of a backhoe or shovel if you will, from back in the days of steam. This Bucyrus Erie B2 is a magnificent model from Vintage Vehicles (Jordan) that is a plastic kit with quite a few parts to it. Not a kit for the novice. I show it above with a vintage lowboy trailer which is a great little and very simple cast metal and wood kit from Rio Grande models. And another version on the right of the same model.

To achieve the grade on a road, graders much like the Caterpillar here are used. This being a very inexpensive Norscot diecast piece from WalMart that I merely painted the plastic pieces, applied a few washes and then used chalks for the final weathering.

Having grown up in a farm community has brought me to think of work vehicles in terms of tractors and other various farm equipment. There was a lot of red International Harvester equipment that I saw in my youth but a few nearby preferred the "green" tractors for their work. The John Deere styled model B was very popular back then and I show the Innovative Designs cast metal model here that I turned into a single tire tripod version. Often seen with a tractor like this would be the discs shown in the photo with it or something similar to the forage wagon on the right which is a plastic kit from Preiser that represents a Euro version.

Here's another John Deere called the "Waterloo Boy" which I believe is an orchard style tractor that I have weathered heavily. This another example of the very cheap stuff once available in scale at WalMart.

And before we leave the farm (something I fear will never leave me), I'll show one more out of use old tractor. The Fordson was one of the first affordable tractors to farm folk. This one from Jordan Miniatures in the farm version. They also offer one for industrial use with steel disc wheels. Henry might well turn in his grave seeing this one left to rot out under the old apple tree.

Also Euro is another Liehberr piece from Kibri in a plastic kit to which I have added a brass lattice boom from Sheepscot models and an excellent cast metal dragline setup from Langley models. This model has been weathered to represent a unit that has not seen use in a while.

Well so much for me neglecting my responsibilities and ignoring the fast growing honey-do list. I must go now but will continue to present things at work soon. Thanks again for coming.


bartek said...

stary, robisz tu zajebiste rzeczy i trzymam kciuki, choć pewnie jesteś głupim amerykaninem, który nie wie, co to jest europa. pozdrowienia z polski.

Katharine said...

Very impressive! I really like how you customized the Norscot grader. Great work.

Katharine Stratton
V.P. of Operations

Anonymous said...

Without doubt your modelling techniques are excellent and your models/dioramas are of the best I know, but referring to the originals I want to make two little corrections:

1. The Wiking model of the hydraulic excavator is not a Liebherr but an O&K RH9

2. The Kibri model of the dragline is not a Liebherr as well but a Menck M 154. Kibri produces several variations of this excavator including a shovel, a backhoe, a pile driver, a clamshell version and a dragline (Item # B-11283). The added boom from Sheepscot seems to be pretty short for dragline action, the one from the Kibri model would be more authentic (particularly if it's got this outstanding realistic look).