Curved Structure Faces

Streamline Moderne industry in Vernon (LA)

If you model Miami or LA the odds are in your favor that there will be at least a few elegant Streamline Moderne industries along the right-of-way. The question becomes one of how to model the signature curved faces. I’ll start by saying the job would be easier if you have three hands. I spent an hour looking around for a plastic pipe or bottle of the required radius. No luck. On to plan B.

Begin by cutting two cookie cutter shapes of the correct radius out of .060″ styrene. These will be the formers that you wrap the wall around and then glue in place to hold the shape. Although I generally use .060″ styrene for walls, in this case I dropped down to .040″ for the curved wall because it’s easier to bend. Cut a section of .040″ styrene of the correct height and length for the curved wall.

Gently bend and roll it in your hands to start forming the curve. Although you won’t get it to stay exactly in shape, you’ll impart enough memory to get it close. Next, liberally apply MEK adhesive to the lip of one of the formers and bend the wall to its shape. Here’s where the third hand would be nice. Hold the assembly shape in one hand (maintaining everything in shape and tightly fitting) and then apply a few drops of thin CA at the connection point. Then immediately pop the joint with CA Instaset. Repeat with the second curved former.

As a final note you’ll notice a door on the left. I cut that in wall section before starting the bending process.

4 thoughts on “Curved Structure Faces”

  • Possibly a cooking bowl or cereal bowl might work? Thanks for the info on curved faces, this will come in handy for Vernon structures as you know!

  • Have you tried:

    Soaking the wall sheet in hot close to boiling water. Clamp the plastic to a piece/cap of PVC pipe ( Home Depot has various sizes)

    Tack a piece of the wall to a small section of the beginning of the curve. let it dry and harden This forms an anchor, than glue the rest of the wall to the curve section.

    Modelling Heavy Industry: A Guide for Railway Modellers by Arthur Ormrod describes it better than I can

  • Patrick Underwood

    Iā€™m a mechanical designer with 18 years of 3d CAD experience, and have both FDM and SLA 3d printers. Iā€™d be happy to model up and print any curvy building you want! Just send me some photos and drawings. Seriously. Pricing is negotiable. šŸ˜ƒ

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