The Sawmill Project kit #308



  • The trusses and rafters took the whole build to a new perspective..... fantastic!!

  • Bryan, wonderful work here. Your lights are like many of the detailing concepts...not overdone. Too many lights would be distracting to me. Some scattered glowing lights in strategic places will look wonderful and I think you got it just right.
  • Thanks Karl.

    Yes Ken, I think you are right. Don't want to get blinded by the light.

    I did put together a conduit today using Plastruct U channel. Got a cover to put on top after it's wired. I primed it a medium gray (not seen here) and will blend it into the mill with powders. I wanted a very basic paint job since there will parts added later to finish it up. I decided to go this route instead of hiding the wires in the rafters. I also got a great idea from Brett about a light switch to be installed later. Should be fun.image
  • Oh man that's all so sweet. If there's no agreement on the roofing you could always do one section in wood and one in metal-'say the lower shed roof. That was, of course, quite common practice. If you do corrugated I recommend Jax Aluminum Blackener as a great alternative to etchant. It's water based and is just a soaking solution like the pewter blackener.
  • The conduits are a great idea - I was thinking of tubing but why go to that kind of hassle ....
  • Bryan....overly inspired by all of your work.....I am still waiting on my kit....I cannot wait to get started....thank you for all of the outstanding photos and ideas...
  • Thanks James for reminding me that I bought a bottle of the aluminum blackener with my last order of pewter black. I haven't tried it yet. If you have I would like to see your results. I was planning on painting a gray primer as the base for the corrugated. I'm not a big fan of the etchant. It gets great results but I'm not sure it's worth it for me. There is some metal on my rigging shed that I did not rinse enough evidently and is starting to get a white coat of oxidation on it.

    The idea of trying to thread multiple wires down a small tube did not excite me from the beginning. I don't think it can be done. That's why I've been struggling with alternatives from the start. This seems like a reasonable solution. It looks like it should be there but is not obtrusive. The channel itself is a scale 4x6 and with the cap it's 5x6.

    MuddyCreek, looking forward to another build.
  • Here's some roof panel experiments. First pic show some scrap pieces. Top made using etchant, rinsed then scrubbed with a toothbrush. Middle same-no scrubbing. Bottom is Jax aluminum blackener. Right side scrubbed. Not scrubbing leaves it too black. Scrubbing gives a nice color but has a shine to it. I feel like I can get the color of the scrubbed, etched panels using gray primer, which is what I did on these roof panels.

    The painting idea has been scrapped. I can't get the oxidized look I was going for, but the light colored panel has potential as a wall or fence some day.imageimageimage
  • Bryan your doing an outstanding job on the Mill. Nice coloring on that metal roof.

  • Yeah - the aluminum blackener does have some drawbacks as you note - I didn't find it getting as black as your sample, but the oxidation does kind of rub off like allot of brass blackeners do.
  • Bryan ive just been over the last couple of pages twice and the details are just fantastic. There is so much to see and the figures really make the whole thing come to life. You are doing this kit real justice. Well done.
  • Bryan,

    Wow, looking great! And I love your idea for a wiring trough. An earlier post in another thread commented on not using metal tubing to carry wire because he needed to have one or more "break outs". Your trough is the solution I'll use for just that purpose - and of course I never would have thought of it myself . . . In leadership resource management training a well used word is "synergy" - a group of people working on a problem will eventually find a solution that is better than what the smartest person would have found.

  • Looking good Bryan. It just gets better and better. I think your lighting will work out great. Just my opinion but 'over' lighting a scene can kill the effect quickly. I'm in the camp of less is more. Back in the days when mills such as yours' were in operation electric lighting was less than optimal.

  • Bryan I somehow missed the colored roofing panels. I'm sure you have heard about/seen these products.
    and the how to page

    I'm not sure if this will help in your current project.

  • Thanks guys.

    James, I hit it with steel wool first so that may be the reason for it being darker.

    John, you are right and I appreciate all of the ideas that were presented as part of my lighting solution. they were all very helpful...lets just hope it works out OK.

    Michael, I have a pack of those panels that I have yet to try. I'm not going to rule them out without trying but would lean towards metal if for no other reason than the thickness of the materials. And yes, dark and gloomy would probably describe most work sites of this era.

    I have the light fixtures nearly all assembled and hope to get them primed tonight. I went ahead and epoxied the track to the cross beams and will insert the lights from underneath. It won't be easy but I felt that this approach would make it easier to manage the tangle of wires that will accumulate.
  • Well I just primed the light fixtures and they look like crap. I used Grandt Line reflectors and .025 tubing from ngineering. The tube was a little small for the opening on the reflector and I filled the gap with epoxy. Everything looked fine until it was painted then the epoxy filler looked like a big glob that didn't belong. Back to the beginning on this part. I'm going to use the ngineering reflectors since I have them on hand. If I don't like those I will get a larger tube. I really did like the smaller Grandt line reflectors.
  • I ran into the same thing with my woodcutters build (still patiently waiting to be finished). I found several packs of old Campbell brass hoods which I swear are really o scale sized- I blackened them and wasn't going to paint them but had the same issue of tube size which I have yet to deal with.
  • I would think for the woodcutter shack, if the lights are outside you would want a perfect match, if inside you could fudge it a little.

    Here's the solution I came up with using the ngineering tubing and lampshades.

    I started by punching a small hole from the inside of the lampshade with a pick then drilled through with a .026 drillbit. I filed the sharp edges and drilled again. I used the pick to flare out one end of the tubing that I cut to about 1/2". I picked up some nuts/washers from VectorCut and drilled and installed a washer on the tubing which stopped at the flare. I inserted into the lampshade, added just a drop of epoxy to the washer and secured. I added a hexnut to the top of the tube as a stop for the conduit and secured with CA glue. Painted it up and that's what you see here. I'll weather with powders to give a dust accumulation from being in the sawmill.

    Try not to get any glue/epoxy/paint on the tube end. But if you do a #78 drill fits inside to tube to clear it out.

    Next up I'll need to fire up the soldering iron. imageimage
  • Bryan, these shades are well thought out and executed with the skill of an excellent craftsman. I bet they will look great.

  • I've used a few different methods to "hang" lighting...and I've seen in a lot of older structures.....real structures.....they didn't always go with a "permanant looking" instalation. The lighting was hung just using the electric wires....mainly smaller if you are using the newer LED "bulbs"....this won't be as easy as the old "grain of wheat" bulbs that had the black wiring attached. You would need to solder on those leads yourself. The wire could then be run along beams as it might in a prototypical situation. I am planning on lighting in my builds on the table now to use smaller fixtures that could worh with this method. These wires can find there way into conduits that meet at scale size junction boxes on columns....was thinking of drilling out the columns and run the wires out of the backs of these junction boxes...down the columns (posts)....and either below the structure...or even run them down thru the foam to a buss bar underneath....I have no photos yet...and it does seem like alot of work...just another thought on a solution....will post pics once I get to that point...I am still waiting for my kit to arrive....keep up the good work...
  • Forgot to add....your stuff looks outstanding...
  • Thanks Marty, I've sure thought about it enough for about 3 months now.

    Muddy, I was stuck on your idea of drilling posts for a long time, then loose hanging wires. I went with this because I wanted something unobtrusive and somewhat plausible with minimal chance of me messing it up or just looking bad.

    So if you have lights you need a light switch right? I put one up front and 1 in the back. I used scrap wood for the box, .032 wire for the conduit and thin brass strip for the handles. Vectorcut nuts to attach the conduit.imageimage
  • those switches and the conduit...I think I might end up with a bit of both ways of doing it....once I get that far...I'll be sure to put up pictures....keep up the good work on your build....I am sure I will reference your pics during my build....having this forum is a blessing...Thanks Brett!
  • Bryan, really nice shades and the switch is a great touch...splendid job.
  • Byran, i will steal the light switch idea for use in the future.

    Love the shelf details. Are those shelf brackets part of the kit?

  • Thanks Art and Ken.

    Marty, the brackets do come in the kit. The bottom shelf is just scrap wood cut in a triangle. The top bracket comes as a white metal casting that looks like a splice plate. You bend it and the connector is just a piece of brass rod. Neat little detail.
  • great details- the hoods and the switch. Lighting and related details can cause so much angst- these look spot on!
  • Everything is looking great Brian. I'm glad to see the light switch idea worked out for you.

  • Wonderful Bryan! The light switch is perfect, glad Karl reminded me about it!!!
  • James, angst is a good word. I'm looking forward to having this part done so I can move on. I'll be glad I added lights but I hate adding lights.

    Karl and Brett, thanks for the idea.
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