Just Another Brick In (Or Under) The Wall

I’m not much of a Pink Floyd fan so I’m quite content to misquote a song of their’s in the title. My modelling has been all about bricks this week.

I’ve barely been able to do any modelling all week. The end of the academic year in Australia means that this time of year is filled with reports, presentations, retirement dinners, graduations and formals of one type or another and I have about two of every type to attend because my school covers 13 years of schooling on one site. I’ve only been home in the evening for about a third of evenings for the last two weeks but there is a light at the end of the tunnel when the cherubs finally stop coming to school after next Friday and they’re inflicted exclusively on their parents for the following 5 or 6 weeks. Bliss 🙂 Modelling has taken a definite back seat for the last couple of weeks.

In spite of these travails I’m not prevented from thinking about the models I’m building as I drive to and from work and my mind was occupied with a problem of my own making dating back a month or so this past week. In building the wooden carcass for the mill building I’m currently covering in DAS modelling clay, I made a cardboard mock-up of the structure and used this as the basis of the wooden frame for the permanent building. Not checking prototype photos carefully enough, I failed to take into account a slight quirk of this mid 19th century building and found a problem that would be difficult to fix after I’d made the wooden frame a few weeks ago.

This very old shot shows the way the roof sits inside the exterior walls.

This very old photo shows the way the roof of Rundles Mill sits inside the exterior walls. The mill is the building on the far left.

If you look at the prototype photo above you can see that the roof line of the mill building is a classic 19th style with the roof covering sitting inside the exterior walls of the structure. Almost 100% of the buildings I’ve ever constructed have the roof sitting on top of the exterior walls with the roof sitting proud of these planes, thus providing an eave to which fascia boards are attached. As a modeller this is a wonderful roofing method because it means the modeller needn’t be all that neat at the roof line because there are convenient pieces of trim that sit in places that hide the rough edges. Not that my edges are ever rough mind you 🙂 However the problem I’d encountered was that I hadn’t taken this slightly different method of construction into account when I’d cut up my wooden wall sections and as such, I’d left no room to fit the roof inside the walls. I toyed with the idea of roofing the building in the “standard” way, namely with an overhanging roofline with eaves ,but I knew in my heart this would never do: I needed to find a way to extend the side walls by about 6mm above the front and rear walls to allow room for the roof to sit inside the upper wall line as in the photo above.

I've trimmed the tops of the walls with 12"x12' Mt Albert Bass wood and I've also finished scribing in the brick patches.

I’ve trimmed the tops of the walls with 12″x12′ Mt Albert Bass wood and I’ve also finished scribing in the brick patches.

I have no plans for this building and no idea of dimensions so it’s nowhere near the size of the original. This doesn’t bother me in the least, however covering the roof with a standard pitched roof with corrugated iron or tile with eaves would have been wrong on so many levels and it would have screamed at me every time I looked it. I finished scribing in the brick courses this afternoon and I’m very close to starting to render the exterior surface of the structure with DAS. I needed a way to extend the walls above the current wall height before I could proceed with this. The solution was very simple in the end: I cut and glued in place some 12×12 Mt Albert lumber to extend the height of the wall line. I now have that telltale extra wall height which will allow me to construct the roof sitting inside the walls.

Not much progress but some progress is better than none.

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