We design & produce building kits in various scales and gauges that are as detailed inside as they are outside.

When you purchase one of our 3DK kits, it is emailed out to you anywhere in the world where you can instantly download and print realistic model railway buildings from your home computers.

 

Most of today’s home colour printers have the capacity to print at resolutions well beyond most conventional "pre-printed" card model building kits. Once downloaded, you can print that kit out as many times as you need-It’s as simple as 1—2—3

Download Card Kit Help Guides.

 

DOWNLOAD  -  PRINT  -  BUILD

Card Construction Tips              

  • 3DK lets you instantly download and print realistic model railway buildings from your home computers! Most of today’s home colour printers have the capacity to print at resolutions well beyond most conventional "pre-printed" card model building kits.

 

  • Once downloaded, you can print that kit as many times as you need.

  • To assemble our card kits you don't have to have an elaborate workshop like we are fortunate enough to have at 3DK, but you do have to have some basic tools before you start.

        Tools required

 

  • It is essential to have a good supply of craft blades as you will go through quite a few cutting out the kits. Unfortunately, card blunts craft blades very quickly and blunt blades can tear and ruin the wonderful kit you have just purchased.  (Remember! If you damage any part of the kit during assembly, just print it out again from the original PDF file.)

 

  • I normally keep one larger knife for long basic cutting jobs, one knife for smaller straight forward jobs and one specifically for just cutting out delicate items like windows. The last blade is the one I should change most often and I would expect to go through two or three of these blades assembling just one building kit.

  • At 3DK we have a large selection of hand tools, machinery, casting equipment, drawing materials, computer software and hardware, but that dose not mean that you require any where near the amount of equipment that we use on a daily basis.

  • Illustrated is a selection of the sort of tools you would require to successfully complete one of our structure kits. As shown, the basic tools for card kit building would include ruler, scissors, glue etc.

       How to Download

  • To start you need to download the PDF file emailed out to you. A PDF (Portable Document Format) is the current standard for transferring the files to you as it is quick and simple.

  • Viewing and printing high-quality documents on the web or via email. 3DK kits are supplied as PDF files, these files can be opened, viewed and printed using Adobe Reader, a free program available from Adobe.com  for any operating system or platform. Just follow this link to download the software if you do not have it installed on your computer.: https://get.adobe.com/reader/

       Which paper to use when printing

  • The best paper too use to print out your new kit is the letter sized self adhesive address labels which are available form most stationary retail outlets. It’s ideal as prints on adhesive labels can be stuck directly onto 1mm or 500 gram card before cutting out an assembling. If you prefer to print on paper then please ensure you print on a matte coated paper as shown in the images on the right.

  • The kit has been designed to be used with 1mm or 5oo gram card which is called shirt card or ticket board. Most art suppliers will have some of this type of card in stock. It is normally bright white  on one side and grey on the other.

  • If you are not going too use the self adhesive labels then I would firstly prefer to use a good quality spray photo mount adhesive. There are other options like the Pritt stick and white wood glue but these can be messy ad difficult to work with.

       How to cut out delicate items

  • To cut out delicate items from the kit successfully a razor sharp knife blade is essential. Pick a craft knife and use it only for cutting out the delicate items and replace the blade frequently.

  • Cutting out windows is one of the hardest aspects of building card kits but if done right it can be very successful. The process for cutting out windows begins with a new sharp blade. The order of the cuts are shown.

  • The first cut is shown in fig 1 and goes from the corner of the bottom left to the top left. Be sure not to cut right into the opposing corner and stop short as it is easy to over cut and ruin the top corner.

  • Each cut is shown in sequence from the first cut to the eighth. It is important to always cut away from a corner and never into one. This way you willalways have clean corners. If when pressing out the card after cutting, it does not fall away cleanly, DO NOT try to force it out as this will result in a tear. Simply go over the cuts again until it drops out cleanly.

  • When cutting out round window openings, cut out the window below the semi-circle to start with. Next, cut out most of the semi-circle as shown below. The best way to remove the inside of the semi-circle is to use a downward sawing action with the tip of the blade to carve out the remaining card.

  • It is handy to suspend the card over the edge of the workbench when cutting out the remaining card. Remember! you can only perform this action if the blade is extremely sharp. If the blade is blunt, it will simply rip the card and ruin the kit. When cutting our curves, rather than trying to cut the curve out freehand following the line of the curve, which should only be attempted if you are skilled with a knife, attempt to cut slices off as shown below

  • With each slice taken off the curve should start to take on its shape. When you get down to the last small portions use a very sharp knife and the flat edge of the blade to finish. The same technique can be used for cutting out complete circles as shown on the right.

 

  • As can be seen the first few cuts square the circle off. The next few cuts reveal more of the circular shape. The final cuts should be cut using the flat edge of a sharp blade.

  • There are occasions where it is preferable to cut out freehand. Usually when you are cutting out very small pieces of card such as the station valance shown on the left which can be a fiddly job. In such cases I prefer to use a sharp scalpel blade as it is fairly firm and you can apply pressure directly over the tip. You will find these being sold in art shops or hobby shops.

 

  • The great thing about this type of blade is that you can re-sharpen them on an oil stone thus extending their life, and saving you money.

  • Another excellent knife for freehand cutting is the Stanley Knife which I have used for years. The Stanley Knife is ideal for cutting small pieces where you can put a lot of pressure on a small area. Also it is ideal for cutting out large parts of the kit.

  • When cutting out the walls always try to cut out the door and window openings first
    before cutting out the rest of the building. NEVER apply excess pressure to the knife, it's easier to cut heavy card with several lighter cuts rather than a single cut. Once you have removed all the delicate parts you can then cut out the main walls.

 

  • Before starting, plan the sequence of cuts you are going to make, as can be seen below left. This is essential to ensure that no parts move or come loose while you are cutting them out.

 

  • To ensure the card does not move while you are cutting it out you can pinch the underside of the workbench with your thumb with your fingers clamping the steel rule to the work piece.

 

  • When cutting out delicate paper items score all parts before removing them from their sheets. Keep a dull edged knife blade for light scoring. It is best to practise on a piece of card or paper before attempting the real thing.

  • Bend all parts prior to assembling. If the card or paper requires to be folded the opposite way to the indication line then it may help to prick the card with a pin to leave a mark on the reverse side. It is then just a matter of lining up the pin holes with your steel rule before scoring and bending.

  • When a score line extends into a cut line, score the whole line first, then cut through where required afterwards. This will keep everything lined properly.

             Weathering Buildings

  • Practically any surface modeled can be weathered with a dry brush technique . Before weathering the card kits it is recommended to spray with Testers dull Cote as this will give the card a protective coating that can then be weathered. Weathering is best carried out with that old tired worn out brush that's been lying at the bottom of your paint box.

 

  • Take your brush, which should be a flat faced brush, and rub it into the colour you have mixed up, which should have been mixed up with a very little thinners or water. Gently rub the brush onto a piece of cardboard, removing all but a small amount of paint. Almost immediately gently rub the almost dry brush over the desired area in a soft circular scrubbing motion. This should leave the required faint trace of weathering colour on the wall. For wood affect, the brush should follow the grain of the wood.

 

  • Weathering model trains with chalk designed for model railroaders works well because it has a fixative in it that helps it to adhere to shiny surfaces like the plastics used for buildings and rolling stock. I like Bragdon and Bar Mills weathering chalks. You can buy packs with the primary colors you will use most often: black, rust, raw sienna, burnt sienna, etc. Weathering chalks are easy to apply.

 

  • Use a soft brush to put them on. A makeup brush works well. With these commercial weathering chalks there is no need to overspray with Dullcoat if the model will not be too roughly handled. You probably will need to do so if you make your own powdered chalk.

 

  • These techniques can be used anywhere that requires ageing or distressing. Weathering powders are readily available, but I prefer to grind up my own using artists chalk rubbed over sandpaper. To ensure the powders stay where put, spray the area with thinned down acrylic matt varnish,

 

  • Remember to highlight any areas that would attract water, like leaking drainpipes, rising damp etc. The acrylic varnish will seal all the powders thus ensuring that the powders do not detach themselves.

      Fro more information

 

Fig 1

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3dk.ca model railway downloadable structure & railroad building card kits. 3DK produces some of the finest and most detailed model railway card kits available on the market today. We produce a large number of kits in various scales and a range of styles from line side industries, low relief street scenes, stations, garages etc. We also produce a large range of detailing sheets of brick and stone walling, roofing, doors and windows.