Scratch Built Flat Part 1… Attempt 2


In “Scratch Built Flat Part 1” from a couple weeks ago I showed four beams cut, I even made it a couple steps further before I realized that my 55ft beams was a little short of 54ft.


Missed it by that much

I decided to take another stab at it but waited until I got some more xacto blades which came with a warning that was more puzzling than useful.


How exactly are you supposed to keep safety goggles on your fingers? But I soldiered on without any safety googles for my fingers and actually broke a blade which a first for me.


Finally I had four new beams of allegedly the correct length. These I found were much easier to cut because I’d had practice and new blades to use. I’m happier with the angles but there is still room for improvement. I’m calling it good enough on this car as holding out for perfection will probably just killing the desire and I’ll never finish it.


Here they are a couple steps further along I made a bit of a mistake on the center beam, the horizontal piece on the bottom profile is ofset the wrong way so there’s almost no gap in the middle. Unfortunate but for my first one I’m just going to go with it. You won’t be able to see it while it’s on the track anyway in theory.


If anyone is looking to take this on I’d recommend getting extra styrene (as I did) so you can try again if you make a mistake (as I did) without the pressure of feeling like you are going to run out if you make a mistake. I also found on the second attempt at these beams I was able to take a much more laid back approach which made it more fun (this is a hobby after all) and when I was more relaxed I did a lot better job. I was also posting picks as I went to my blog’s Facebook page. I’ll probably do that again as the mood strikes because it was rather fun so if you use Facebook (and there are a number of great modelers on Facebook) it’s something to look out for as I probably wouldn’t post things that short on WordPress.

3 thoughts on “Scratch Built Flat Part 1… Attempt 2

  1. Most scratchbuilt models take two or more attempts before they turn out. The first time, you figure out how to do it, and the second time, you do it right.

    Someone should let people know this.

    1. It’s funny, when I started doing woodworking projects (mostly small furniture project type stuff) I jumped in with way less hesitation. I remember my first project (outside of shop class in high school) I had in my hand a new circular saw and a small stack of lumber that the combination of which cost more than I’ve invested in this flat car project and if we are honest could have gone way worse in the worst case scenario that cutting strips of plastic with an Xacto pen knife. I jumped right in to the first cut with no hesitation. It wasn’t even perfectly straight but I got I got it straightened out and finished the whole project and still have it today.

      But it makes me wonder why I don’t approach model railroading the same way.

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