HOn3 kit bash

Brian’s been back in touch with his HOn3 kit bash:

“Hi Al, hope all is well with you.

As promised, another write up on one of my builds: Sierra West build (HOn3)

A friend in Durban (RSA) about 1000 kms up the east coast from me, visited my layout here in Knysna and did not have enough time to see it all and asked if he could visit again the next day to see what he missed on the first day.

It was here that he asked me multiple questions on my build technique on all my buildings and on my layout.

He proceeded to ask me if I would be prepared to build one of his kits that he obtained.

His excuse was that he wanted to use the built up model as an example to follow when building his own models.

I agreed to build it (in a trade off) for him and 75 hours later, the results can be seen below.

When the kit arrived, I did as I alway do, open up the box, read the instruction book and then check the contents.

My excitement soon turned into dismay as there was about 50 to 60% of the kit missing.

I phoned my friend in Durban and he gave me an explanation as to why there was so much missing.

I told him that he shouldn’t worry about it and said that i will continue to scratch/ kit build his limited run kit.

I would supplement the missing parts from my “bits box”

Below is the photo on the box that I had to use as an example of what was needed. I did some research on the internet but to no avail as to any finding photos of the built up kit.

picture of kit box

So, let the fun begin.

After reading and studying the instructions 3 times, I decided that I had to build the top level structure first as that would give me the correct size for the bottom part of the 2 story structure.

top level of HOn3 kit bash

The kit was supposed to have stone and brick walls on the bottom structure but those were completely missing. I decided to use Northeastern Scale scribed siding for the four walls.

HOn3 kit bash adding side building

Now I have a structure to work on.

kit bash adding base layer

Fortunately the walls and roof casting for the side building was in the kit.

HOn3 kit bash adding roof

I was able to to find enough windows of the correct size as well as doors that fitted the doorways. (From my own castings)

HOn3 kit bash painting walls

I mixed up a wall colour that closely matched the photo, painted the building, doors, windows and weathered them accordingly.

adding fence to model train building

Unfortunately the chain link fence was also missing, I decided to make and wood fence and weather it up a bit to look as if it has been there for a long time. I salvaged bits and pieces from my “bits box” to use in this area.

adding detail to model train outhouse

Next was adding tar paper to the roof. It has to be weathered as tar paper would look in real life. I use masking tape cut into strips and started the layers from the bottom up.

Once done, I painted on quick set Alcolin (white) wood glue over the whole roof and let it dry for 24 hours.

It was then painted using acrylic grimy black and this gave me the old and worn look. I added a few patches here and there where the roof had been repaired.

HOn3 kit bash weahering walls

The HO gauge track in front is just a guide and will be replaced with HOn3 track.

HOn3 kit bash weathering roof

I used the resin shingle roof supplied in the kit, painted and weathered it accordingly. I also weathered the sign as well.

adding detail to platform

Details was added to the platform and deck in front of the door of the HOn3 kit bash. (ignore the track in front).

adding detail to porch

Next was the addition of the front porch also missing from the kit.

weathering roof model train building

Note the patches on the porch roof where a few leaks were fixed.

adding HO scale person to porch

The boss thanked the worker below for repairing the leaking roof.

HOn3 building

An Ariel view of the diorama showing the addition of a tree behind the fence. An HOn3 flat car being loaded in front of the platform.

HOn3 building

completed HOn3 kit bash diorama with weathering

The final photo of the completed diorama with all the weathering done.

Plus/minus 75 hours of building excluding the time taken moulding a few of the details that were added that I did not have readily available at the time.

A write up and photos (of the ‘trade off kit’) as I build it will appear here in the near future. It is Fine Scale Miniature Seafood Emporium.

Kind regards

The HOn3 guy in Knysna RSA”

A big thank you to Hall of Fame member, Brian for sharing his HOn3 kit bash.

I do love his building style – it has bag of chararcter.

That’s all for this time my friends.

And if Brian has inspired you to make a start, the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

10 Responses to HOn3 kit bash

  1. Don Henry says:

    Very nice display.

  2. Great job, thanks for sharing.

  3. George Zaky says:

    Wow! You guys just say ” I joined the walls.” well you did it perfectly. I do it and it looks like crap! You say ” I painted the front”- I do it and it looks like I poured it on despite every effort to make it right. Painting the windows- AArgh!!
    Your talents and craftsmanship are amazing.
    This job is so great!
    be safe
    George from LI, NY

  4. Mark T. Pianka says:

    Very nice!

  5. William Orton says:

    Great work. I think if you had all the parts, it wouldn’t have turned out as authentic.

  6. Rob Schweitzer says:

    I love kit bashed buildings, this one is terrific! Thanks so much for sharing your techniques.
    Rob Schweitzer
    St. Goar & Murren Scenic Railway
    Ann Arbor, Michigan USA

  7. Erick says:

    Looks Great.!!!!! Would like see more.

  8. Pete Evangel says:

    Fantastic job building this. I did some quick research on this build and learned the model Scotia Supply was named after a gold claim in Northern California during the fabled days of the 1800’s gold rush. The town of Scotia still exists today in Northern Calif. It became a redwood lumber town and still produces lumber. As a youngster I have visited Scotia on family camping trips to the Redwoods area. Took tours of the old lumber mills. If you ever get to the area, tours at the old Pacific Lumber Mill (went bankrupt-bought by someone and changed the name) are still available.


    Pete of Silicon Valley, Calif.

  9. Francis Vanderwall says:

    Outstanding work on a complicated building. All I can say is WOW!!!
    Francis Baton Rouge, LA>

  10. Dave Karper says:

    What can I say? More kudos to Mr. Perfection. I have been in model railroading since 1946 and have seen all the greats. I won’t compare Bryan with those of the past because he is in a class of his own.

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