Water, water, water

Z train things Jul 21, 2020

  1. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    This is an opinion poll so there are no wrong answers unless you reply with 'use real water' I've seen real water used on a larger scale layout and it looked goofey.

    I'm making a Caribbean resort type swimming pool diorama for a project I'm working on and I'm wondering what water medium is your favorite and why?

    Here's the pool shape with the bottom painted in a shade of blue. I want the water to look as natural looking as possible, but don't know what medium would be best. I am leaning towards likely using a 2 part pour medium, but it's been a long time since I tried my hand at some water.

    Any opinions will be greatly appreciated.

    Loren
     
  2. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Envirotex Lite has always given me the most realistic results for calm water. You mix the 2 parts in equal measurements, stirring until it starts to feel like it's getting warm, then just add a couple drops of paint to dye it any color you like.

    If it don't feel like it's heating up after 10 minutes of stirring, it's not going to set well and may be sticky for weeks, so you know you have a bad or old batch, and you don't pour it. This heating feature makes it the safest epoxy resin to use for me.

    Other things of note, CO2 causes micro bubbles to come out and pop, so you can use a propane flame, or a soda straw with a piece of paper towel taped on the tip to blow through the straw to pop the micro bubbles. The paper towel is to catch spit condensation so the wet straw don't drip in the resin.

    Your pour area needs to be leak tight, it will find a tiny hole and leak to the floor, but you can seal the bottom with anything waterproof before pouring resin, including painting it with white glue then sprinkling any kind of sand or gravel down before the resin layer.

    Well, that's all I know about that.
     
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  3. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    IMG_2003.JPG Hyatt-Maui-Travel-Hotel-Review-Photos-2016.jpg
    Mr Ray, this is Mr Snyder speaking...............ok, enough of the formal stuff.:) Thank you for your reply, I knew I could count on you for good, sound advice. And that goes for anyone else out there. I"ve known Robert for many years and shared a number of train shows with him and he definitely does know what he is taking about.

    I have used Envirotes many years ago and likely have some left over, somewhere, but I think a small investment in some new product would be a wise investment.

    Since I have painted the pool blue already, will I still need some coloring to add to it or will the paint show through from the sides and bottom as I am imagining? One last question, what sort of paint do you recommend?

    Thank you Robert. Give yourself an extra atta boy' and 10 browny points Your advice is well worth it.

    Loren........always the grasshopper learning from the master:notworthy:
     
  4. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    I have always use a solvent based paint for tinting. I have had success with Floquil, Testors tiny square bottle enamel, and Scalecoat I, and I have never tried any other paints in my Envirotex. Just remember to add the tint AFTER you feel the mixing cup getting slightly warmer.

    You do not need to add any color to the resin since you already painted the bottom and sides of the pool however.

    Also, if you come back between 4 and 12 hours after the pour, and use a heat gun, you can add ripples to the water surface, however, I would recommend you make a larger batch of the resin, and pour the extra in 2 or 3 aluminum pie pans to the same depth as your pool, and use the heat gun on one of the pie pans, coming back every couple hours and doing the next pie pan, until the exact ripple effect you want is achieved before taking the heat gun to your pool.

    PS: Now is a good time to add any pool lights, and silver drain grates, etc, if you want to superdetail your pool and take it to the next level. You can drill holes, thread in prewired SMD LED's and return drain screens, then mix clear 5 minute epoxy to dab on them and seal the holes, and also seal the silver paint on the drain grills before your resin pour.

    Also, if you are going to add people, make sure to spray them with clear finish before placing them in the resin, because any unsealed paint will tend to leach into the nearby resin as though it was sitting in thinner.
     
  5. bostonjim

    bostonjim TrainBoard Member

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    Have you thought of writing a book? I can't keep track of all these tips. As a former pool boy in a previous stage of my life I can appreciate the fine detailing on the pool. I bet you could even add in the "deep end." Don't forget the diving boards. Jim
     
  6. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    On my N scale layout I have a river that is 43 inches wide and the layout is 12 inches deep. I have Woodland Scenics water but have not used it before, any tips?

    Still have to install fascia and background and seal each side with caulking.

    Joe

    Module 05 with the Frisco Arkansas River Bridge.

    20200721_104803_HDR.jpg 20200721_104629.jpg
     
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  7. southernnscale

    southernnscale TrainBoard Supporter

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    I have use the Woodland Scenic water but it was just for a small pond on a farm. I put it in 2007 and it still looks good to me. it the only thing I've tried since I'm not one that did show and need things to look perfect!
    1114021859a.jpg Building N Scale Bridge over Water (24).JPG
     
  8. SJ Z-man

    SJ Z-man TrainBoard Member

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    All of the ‘waters’ are polymers, a simple 2 part chemistry. You can use the 2-part mix or the home-based floor wax to get the near exact results (reacts with moisture in the air).
    As Rob says, if the tempeature isn’t right . . . and the typical bubbles (albeit really small), tacky (forever) has caused many to post the issues of Envirotex-like products. Not to mention the very high chemical smell. And I don’t suggest using product that’s been stored away for years. It’s like food and other items, you’re just asking for high probability of failure.
    The floor waxes dry fast however, they are thin coats. But water is only an illusion. You don’t need to pour 1/4 inch or 1 inch, just a film. It’s about the surface, the color and the clarity choices. If you get a “matte medium“ from stores like Michael’s, hobby lobby etc. you simply brush them into the surface and let them flow out over several hours. In your case if you get the gloss then it will eventually become completely flat I have a shine to the top. After that you can brush On the top surface coat and as it dries, periodically tap it with the paintbrush (I use an “acid brush” (metal tube with black fibers) to create a little bit of ripple as it cures to hardness.
    NOTE: If you want a shiny surface, make sure that you do this where are you will not get any dust settling. That means prepare everything in the evening, wait overnight and then do it in the morning, carefully and then make sure nothing else happens in the room for the entire day. Seriously. Most all of these take a long time to completely cure “tack free”
     
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  9. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Joe,
    I'd start by painting the water area a muddy color that replicates the color of the river where you model. Darker colors where deeper, lighter colors in the shallows. I did this river bit for Sherman Hill Model RR Club many years ago. No better photos of it, though.

    [​IMG]

    I used Woodland Scenics water effects for ripples and it looks nice. I forget what water product I used, but it was likely a WS product.

    To keep this Z-related, there IS a Z scale train in the shot... :p


     
  10. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    Sorry guys for the head cranking needed to view this latest. I IMG_2062.JPG have tried several ways to turn the photo and my computer refuses to cooperate....or could it be operator error?(n) Well, anyway, I anchored the pool in place and will now add palms, bushes and chairs and people to the scene.. Surrounding rock work needs to be painted also.
     
  11. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    A security fence goes around the whole scene to keep the wayward from stepping over the edge and killing themselves on the tracks below.
     
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  12. LWR21

    LWR21 TrainBoard Member

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    The stairs really add depth to the pool. Great detail.
     
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  13. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    And the alligators out!:D
     
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  14. mdvholland

    mdvholland TrainBoard Member

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    A nice and doable method seems to be presented here:

    And even if you are not planning a waterarea on your layout, this happy Swede is just fun to watch (y)

    Matt
     
  15. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    I have watched that video several times this year, and want to try that method. It looks promising, I want to adapt it to shallow but fast moving river water on one of my modules.
     
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  16. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    Got a little progress on the pool scene.............I've got some pool side palms planted IMG_2111.JPG and am waiting to add some lawn chairs, chase lounges, and people to the scene. Have to add the water rushing into the end of the pool and add a security fence to the scene. I've just begun to add some color to the rock work, (actually painted cement like you see at Disneyland.)
     
  17. SJ Z-man

    SJ Z-man TrainBoard Member

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    looks really good ! The random shape is great.
     
  18. bostonjim

    bostonjim TrainBoard Member

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    Great use of buttons and beads for the planters. Jim
     

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