What's on my desk? Part 4.

Good morning!

I've decided to make the 'What's on my desk' blog posts every Tuesday.

So here's this week's installment:

I've been steadily working on both the Mercedes and San Francisco tram. The Mercedes is closing in on the finish line:

Painted parts of the Mercedes 300SL.

The car body has been painted Mr. Aqueous Color H-21 Off-White. It's a nice cream colour with a lovely shine to it. I'll polish it a bit further with Tamiya Compound (first time I've ever used that. Any tips?).

The interior is basically finished now. My brown oil paint mix was nearing the end of its life (oil paints only keep for a few weeks in the freezer), so I painted the sides of the seats first, even though there's still some tan stripes to do.

I also painted the dashboard and wheel hubcaps. These are chromed parts and I was pleasantly surprised how well these take paint (both oil and acrylics). The hubcaps include the Mercedes star, which was pretty difficult to do right. Tamiya offers decals for the hubcaps, but these are greyish metallic, instead of shiny chrome. I opted to paint them as well as I could and then carefully scraped the excess paint off the stars and circles. Not perfect, but better than the decals, I think.

 Close-up of the front left wheel and hubcap.

On to the tram!

This week I constructed the second pair of seating benches, fixed the side walls and started on the window frames.

The benches were made the exact same way as the others: build the supports, add planks, dye and varnish. The side walls were glued together and pulled the doorways straight, as expected. They do need a lot of wood filler and then of course a vigorous bout of sanding. Mantua has their own wood filler, but I chose some Polyfilla Superfine. This may actually still be too coarse, and I had to refill some spots after the first sanding session. For more detailed work, the special putty might be better.

Sidewall filled in with Polyfilla.

Once everything was smooth, it was time for some colour. I painted the white first, then masked it and painted the dark red.

San Francisco tram with painted sidewalls.

The bottom blue part I'll leave for last, as there are some posts to be added later in front of the exterior benches. These will need filling and sanding anyway, so I'll wait with painting until then.

The windows then. Here I made another mistake (again with the Oak Dye). I dyed the parts on the sprue. Bad idea, because they still need cutting out and sanding. Because the oak dye soaks into the wood, this weakens the layers somewhat. Sanding has to be done very carefully so nothing breaks...

In the end I got all the frames sanded and dyed. You then have to glue them to a transparant sheet. OcCre instructions tell you to use contact glue, but I decided to try Ammo Ultra Glue. This is specially formulated to not fog up transparant plastic and it worked like a charm. I left the window frames over the weekend under a stack of catalogues to dry. The glue worked well and none of the windows have fogged up.

Sheet of transparant plastic, with window frames glued on top.

These need to be inserted in the empty window frames of the tram. I might hold off on this until I get further into the build to avoid them getting dirty or damaged.

See you next week!

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