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Building the Rosenbach Signal Box

Pat Pettett




PAT PETTETT talks us through building this G Scale kit.

Following on from our G Scale Day here on the 6th of June, here we take a look at building one of the structures we used on our lawn layout, the PK62041 Rosenbach Signal Box from Piko.
It is quite common for manufacturers to offer a “set” of buildings with the same theme – Piko offer the signal box as well as a station building (PK62040 Rural Station 'Rosenbach') and a small engine shed (PK62042 Rosenbach Engine Shed). But for now, we will focus on the signal box:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Inside are two smaller boxes of parts, with some of the heavier parts stored underneath:

Rosenbach Signal Box

The most important box is the one with the instructions!

Rosenbach Signal Box

The front page of these lists the parts used – on the second page we find the starting point:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Rather surprisingly for a kit, we also find in the other small box, glue! There are two small tubes provided, but I tend to keep another tube from Pola handy (PO330593 Cement for Building Kits). Other than this, we only need the most basic tools – a craft knife for cleaning up parts, sprue cutters for separating the parts, and a pair of scissors for cutting the glazing sheets:

Rosenbach Signal Box

We start with the window frames – the part number of these can be found on the sprue itself:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Once these are separated, run a bead of glue round the frame on the inside – be sparing as we don’t want this running onto the window panes themselves. Press the frame against the first glazing sheet:

Rosenbach Signal Box

There is room for a second frame on this sheet as well – once both are glued on, let them set and weight them down if needed:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Once these are all THOROUGHLY dry, cut each sheet away from the edge of the frame with the craft knife. Now run a thin bead of glue round the outside of the frame, and seat the frames in the wall sections:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Next we start on the doors – pay attention to their orientation on the instructions! As we can see here, the handle fixes to the "underneath" of the door as I am holding it here:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Now insert a glazing sheet against the back of the door, making sure it fits snugly against the corner – Glue this down carefully but firmly:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Once this is completely dry, use the craft knife to cut the window edge to fit – carefully run the blade down the side from the corner:

Rosenbach Signal Box

We can now move onto the walls! These are rendered, with a small course of bricks running around the bottom. Carefully match these up and glue on:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Carry on with the thinner wall sections – these are "handed" so keep them separated so you know which is which! Work your way along the instruction sheet until all of the lower walls are ready.

Rosenbach Signal Box

The two longer walls have recesses for a window (make sure it is the right way up!)

Rosenbach Signal Box

Now sit the door into the frame, and carefully glue the two retaining tabs over the hinges – make sure you don't get any glue at all over the pivots, otherwise the door will not open.

Rosenbach Signal Box

Put these pieces aside, and we will now make a start on the interior floor. This is two sections, and two tabs are used to locate them correctly. Glue them together, making sure you leave them to dry on something very flat indeed!

Rosenbach Signal Box

Next we make up the desk for the interior, and the lever frame – a basic four-lever frame comes with the kit, and there is plenty of space inside for some detailing! Glue the box section of the desk together, and glue the desktop down to hold it in shape:

Rosenbach Signal Box

The lever frame is next – you can either glue the levers in, or just push them gently into the gaps if you want to be able to pose them:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Next we move onto assembling the base walls – start with the long wall and a corner. Make sure you have the floor round the right way, and that the brick base of the walls is at the bottom! Here it is shown upside down, as the wall sections fit flush to the floor:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Work your way around swiftly:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Make sure the walls have a flush fit:

Rosenbach Signal Box

And to help the glue set, wrap elastic bands around the top and bottom to keep things tight;

Rosenbach Signal Box

At this point I flipped the base the right way up, and used weights to make sure the floor glues to the walls properly. First tube of glue is finished! Set aside to dry:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Time for some smaller parts again – take the two handrail sections for the top of the stairs, and glue them onto the base – make sure the notch is in the correct place, as shown on the diagram:

Rosenbach Signal Box
Rosenbach Signal Box

And glue the walkway down – this sandwiches the bottom of the handrails.

Rosenbach Signal Box

Now we can move onto the walls of the box itself – once again start with a long wall section and work your way around the corners, making sure there is no gap between sections:

Rosenbach Signal Box Rosenbach Signal Box

When all sections are glued, wrap more elastic bands around to hold until it sets:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Then glue on the guttering sections – these should fit snugly into the walls:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Once again we "weight" for the glue to dry!

Rosenbach Signal Box

The instructions suggest this is the next step:

Rosenbach Signal Box

However, we are going to make the roof as a removable section, so we will need the roof trusses to be a part of the roof – so don’t glue them down yet! Separate out the roof sections, and glue two of them end pieces together. Run glue across the channel at the top:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Now add the interior support:

Rosenbach Signal Box

You can now add the other end section:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Make sure there is no gap on the outside as you go – the ridge tiles will need to sit here:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Now add one of the large roof sections, and one of the trusses:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Make sure the truss sits flush with the bottom of the roof – the raised section seen here will help locate the completed roof onto the top of the box walls:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Add the second truss and the opposite large roof section:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Work your way round the other end, and we have the roof structure finished:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Main roof structure complete!

Rosenbach Signal Box

Add the central ridge tile strip:

Rosenbach Signal Box

The end ridge tiles are complicated shapes – arrange them before gluing down to test the fit:

Rosenbach Signal Box

Start with the outer strips, then add the inner ones –Glue the staircase to the back of the signal box and we are done!

The roof will quite happily sit in the recesses in the top of the walls, and you have easy access for detailing, changing light bulbs…

This is the second one of these I have built – the first took a couple of evening’s work (with my 3 year old daughter “helping”) – you can easily put one of these together in a few hours. Perfect for that corner by the station!

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