Author Topic: Supertree leaf question  (Read 1190 times)

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Bob

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Supertree leaf question
« on: November 24, 2019, 10:41:56 AM »
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I am about to make my first batch of supertrees. There is 'leaf' material from at least Noch and Scenic Express, and then there is all kinds of turf and flocking material.  Scenic express sells 'super leaf' and then also 'leaf' material.  What is a modeler to do?!  Any advice on your favorite material to use on supertrees?

C855B

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2019, 10:51:55 AM »
+1
We've been using the Scenic Express leaf products:

...mike

http://www.gibboncozadandwestern.com

We don't make mistakes, we have happy accidents. We just don't tell anybody. -Bob Ross

ednadolski

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2019, 11:10:47 AM »
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We've been using the Scenic Express leaf products:
Looks Nice!  Can you pls. post any additional specifics (links)?   Are those wiht the the Supertrees sagebrush?
« Last Edit: November 24, 2019, 11:13:31 AM by ednadolski »

C855B

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2019, 11:51:15 AM »
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Robyn says mostly medium green, with spot highlights in light green. She did use sagebrush on a couple that are not in that picture.

Most of these aren't straight Supertrees, obviously. Her technique has become wire cores covered in... get this... PlayDoh, with Supertree branches CA'ed into the core. Every one is a work of art, no mass-production here. I have to remind her on occasion that a week to do each tree may not be quite enough when we get to wooded sections of the layout.
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We don't make mistakes, we have happy accidents. We just don't tell anybody. -Bob Ross

MichaelWinicki

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2019, 12:17:22 PM »
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My feeling is that leaf material is too large for N-scale...

It comes off more of a "fruit" size than a leaf-size.

I bought the product with great expectations but after using it exclusively on a couple test trees I came to the quick realization that it created leaves that were much too large for the types of trees found in the area I was modeling.

Below is an example of using a sparse amount of light-green leaf material over darker-green flocking:


C855B

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2019, 12:20:05 PM »
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My feeling is that leaf material is too large for N-scale...

Robyn agrees. She's trying to refine a technique using a blade-type spice (or coffee) grinder to cut them to size. So far she's discovering that powdered leaves don't work.  :lol:  :facepalm:

OTOH, there's the sycamore tree at the studio, with leaves the size of dinner plates.
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Bob

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2019, 12:25:13 PM »
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Is flocking small than the leaf materials?  That photos shows the size difference nicley.

For C855B, the Play-doh approach sounds interesting.  I have been wondering how to make the lower parts of SuperTree trunks thicker.  Has Robyn ever molded PLay=-Doh or any other clay around the base of a SuperTree trunk rather than making an entire trunk and then attaching branches?  Does PlayDoh take paint OK?  Then, does Robyn harden it by baking, or does she just let it naturally dry out.  Finally, I thought PlayDoh tended to crack and degrade once it really dries out.  Are the resulting trees stable over time?  Thanks!

MichaelWinicki

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2019, 12:48:04 PM »
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Robyn agrees. She's trying to refine a technique using a blade-type spice (or coffee) grinder to cut them to size. So far she's discovering that powdered leaves don't work.  :lol:  :facepalm:

OTOH, there's the sycamore tree at the studio, with leaves the size of dinner plates.

lol

Yeah, using the leaf product here & there is fine... Just don't won't to use to much of it or on too many trees.

I used a variety of colors of fine-turf to finish off most of my trees.

Here's a tree with a WS armature (I wouldn't use WS armatures exclusively, but they make good back ground trees):



Here's a Super Tree finished off with fine-turf:



I wouldn't go with Super Trees exclusively as an "up-front" tree either, due to the thinness of the trunks.

MichaelWinicki

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2019, 12:49:46 PM »
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Bob,

What part of the country are you modeling?

C855B

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2019, 12:53:02 PM »
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Yes, she tried Play-Doh and heavy-bodied artists' acrylic paint to "thicken" regular Supertrees trunks, with little success, and that's when she moved on to wire armatures. No problems seen with cracking Play-Doh in four months of tree-making, although it's invariably covered with the artists' acrylic. We air-dry, and painting is a breeze.

Our biggest concern at the moment with Play-Doh is whether the wheat content attracts mice. As a test we baited a trap with it, and caught one within a day. We're not completely certain it was the Play-Doh alone, so it's inconclusive. Because of this potential we have been trying other air-dry clays and polymers, but nothing so far beats Play-Doh for workability and general ease of use.
...mike

http://www.gibboncozadandwestern.com

We don't make mistakes, we have happy accidents. We just don't tell anybody. -Bob Ross

peteski

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2019, 08:03:18 PM »
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Yes, she tried Play-Doh and heavy-bodied artists' acrylic paint to "thicken" regular Supertrees trunks, with little success, and that's when she moved on to wire armatures. No problems seen with cracking Play-Doh in four months of tree-making, although it's invariably covered with the artists' acrylic. We air-dry, and painting is a breeze.

Our biggest concern at the moment with Play-Doh is whether the wheat content attracts mice. As a test we baited a trap with it, and caught one within a day. We're not completely certain it was the Play-Doh alone, so it's inconclusive. Because of this potential we have been trying other air-dry clays and polymers, but nothing so far beats Play-Doh for workability and general ease of use.

Wikipedia shows
Play-Doh's current manufacturer, Hasbro, reveals the compound is primarily a mixture of water, salt, and flour, while its 2004 United States patent indicates it is composed of water, a starch-based binder, a retrogradation inhibitor, salt, lubricant, surfactant, preservative, hardener, humectant, fragrance, and color. A petroleum additive gives the compound a smooth feel, and borax prevents mold from developing. Play-Doh contains some wheat and may cause allergic reactions in people who are allergic to wheat gluten. It is not intended to be eaten.

Maybe epoxy putty (there are many different brands available) would be a good alternative to Play-Doh?
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Bob

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2019, 08:13:45 PM »
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I am modeling from Harpers Ferry WV to Cherry Run WV, so mostly deciduous trees.

Gee, I had not thought about PlayDoh possibly attracting mice!  That would truly be a bummer if mice were to do to your layout what beavers do in nature!!!

glakedylan

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2019, 08:31:55 PM »
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sculpy? easily formed
only down side is need to bake it


sincerely
G
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and all may care for each..."

Santa Fe Guy

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2019, 08:49:20 PM »
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Robyn says mostly medium green, with spot highlights in light green. She did use sagebrush on a couple that are not in that picture.

Most of these aren't straight Supertrees, obviously. Her technique has become wire cores covered in... get this... PlayDoh, with Supertree branches CA'ed into the core. Every one is a work of art, no mass-production here. I have to remind her on occasion that a week to do each tree may not be quite enough when we get to wooded sections of the layout.
Mike mention to your wife that Selleys Acrylic "No More Gaps" watered down to a nice consistency works brilliantly on wire tree armatures.
You just brush it on and let dry overnight. May or may not need a second coat. Then it is ready for painting.
Might improve the time per tree.
Rod.
Santafesd40.blogspot.com

MichaelWinicki

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Re: Supertree leaf question
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2019, 09:40:46 PM »
+1
I am modeling from Harpers Ferry WV to Cherry Run WV, so mostly deciduous trees.

Gee, I had not thought about PlayDoh possibly attracting mice!  That would truly be a bummer if mice were to do to your layout what beavers do in nature!!!

Bob,

When it comes to trees my point of view is that "more the merrier" when it comes to who's trees you are using.

I'm not big on using one type of armature/tree finishing technique for all your trees, be it Super Trees or Woodland Scenic Clump Foliage trees.

I made a lot of tree, mostly using someone's existing armature (Scenic Express/Woodland Scenics/JTT) and then finishing the thing off with black poly fiber (available through Micro-Mark) and fine ground foam of some color or color combination– All secured with inexpensive hair spray.

Using a variety of tree-making products is a good thing.

I also bought several already made trees to serve as "show pieces"... You know trees that were set off on their own like this example: