Friday, December 10, 2010

Winter is upon us

And with it comes the dreaded four letter word here in the north country - Snow. Managing the highways of our white landscape has always been a challenge and expense. Surprisingly, much hasn't changed in the way we uncover the asphalt over the years. In doing my research, I've noticed that the highway snow removal truck, while changing in models from year to year, still use the plow to scrape up and push the snow to the side. And so the truck shown here could very well have been outfitted the same as those used several years before and many years after it. The model shown is a 1953 Oshkosh with the Comfo-Vision cab. The body style much resembles the FWD contribution of the same vintage. It is offered in the scale as a solid resin cab from Sheepscot Scale. I used the Sheepscot chassis and wheels also here but the rear wheel differential and spring combination come from Ralph Ratcliffe. The front push frame is mostly styrene. I've been using several different solvent glues for plastic. Good old Testors plastic cement is my choice for Evergreen styrene to Evergreen styrene but when using the Plastruct products I switch to Bondene. It works well for several manufacturers plastic. For instant bonds on styrene, Tenax 7 is another favorite. The light grey plastic on the wing push frame is from a Tichy coal chute kit.

You might notice that the wheels are darkened. They have no paint to hide detail on them but have been treated with a combination of Hydrogen Peroxide and Muriatic Acid (20/80 mix respectively). This solution darkens most pot metals to the color shown. A fuel tank from the parts box was added and all was painted Poly-Scale RR tie brown.

The cab was also painted in the RR tie brown and then a coat of Floquil UP Armor yellow was sprayed. Mirrors and headlamps were added and the chrome work was done. A small resin dump body from Sylvan Scale was painted black and wooden scuff boards were applied.

All of the chassis and push frame had a coat of dirty brush thinner mixed with engine black put on and while still wet were blown with the airbrush with no paint. The rotating beacon is cast metal with a drop of food coloring mixed with wood glue for the lens. The entire model was then washed with acrylic burnt umber and Windex.

Finally the chalks came out along with the wood glue and food coloring for lenses to finish the model. For all the measurements and angles needed to make this as prototypically correct I used the sheet provided by Sheepscot for building the Frink snowplow. I hope to add the plows to this truck eventually but thought it looked good sans plow. Now if I can only get one more winter out of my old snow blower.