11.01.2010

TomyTec Showa Office Building

Tomytec has once again done urban N Scale modelers justice with the release of three "Showa" era buildings; a hotel, apartment, and an office building.   I ordered two of the 'office buildings' with the typical plan to combine the two for an extra-height structure.
As you can see from the above photos, combining two of the structures increases the height from 5 stories to 8 stories.  Below are photos of most of the components of the two building kits.
The below is a close up of the main section that is used to give the stock building its extra 3 floors. You will need to cut some plastic to get the bottom 3 floors of the donating building to fit cleanly on top of the receiving structures, but this is not difficult and all the cutting would be in non-visible areas.  In my photos I've yet to do this.

Also apparant in the below photo is my biggest surprise and disappointment with this structure: the painted-on windows.  Every other TomyTec building I have uses clear plastic for windows, so my expectation was that this building would follow the same formula.
Below is another close up of the 'painted' windows.  I am expecting to mill out the painted windows, at least in a few places, to give the building the interior lighting it needs! 
The below photo also shows the extra generous sidewalk height....for those folks who use the Kato/Tomix buildings together, this large sidewalk is going to present an annoying inconsistency.  Again, compared with past TomyTec or Tomix structures, this is really unusual.  Something else that doesn't look right to me is the different heights of the doors for the main lobby and the elevator section.  This may be prototypical, but it just doesn't look that great to me.  I may add a canopy or something over the shorter door to hide some of this.
Another close-up....
The box:
So my last couple of comments were a little negative and I want to make sure I offset that with some positives....its a really neat looking building that, honestly, looking at the top photos in context of other structures, really stands out nicely!  The 'silver metal' sides of the buildings look pretty convincing to me and the general modern style is always desirable!  Other than some minor issues, the painted windows are the only real drawback, however, for those folks who don't light their buildings, I understand this may even be a benefit!   Also, the price on this (ignoring the shipping costs from Japan) is really good.  Your not paying for the level of quality you'd expect from the new Kato structures, so you shouldn't expect it.  Overall, these are a good value and I'm looking forward one day to getting these lit up and detailed for permanent installation on the layout!

8 comments:

  1. Jerry thanks for this. I'm going to get at least 2 of these maybe 3, to do pretty much the same build.

    What I've done in the past with some of the tomix buildings that have thicker sidewalks is either remove them and glue the building to sidewalk styrene from evergreen. Or I have kept the thicker sidewalk material and shaved it on the disk sander. The other thing I've done is cut away some of the size of the sidewalk and then glued it to styrene sidewalk again from evergreen. It creates a step up from the sidewalk into the office building. This is a common thing in modern office buildings.

    Anyways beyond my thoughts. I really appreciate this post. Are you going to do the other 2 buildings as well?

    Great work again,

    Your friend Bob..

    Oh your Kibri Building is on the way.

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  2. Hi Bob! I've been doing pretty much the same thing with sidewalks. When I can abandon it all together I do, but as most of us know, some if the sidewalk sections also are molded with critical ground floor details!

    I don't plan on getting the other two right now. I've been out of space for new buildings for awhile, so something has to be better than what I've got to replace something else! This building is cool enough to make the grade, but haven't decided yet if I want to do more from this series!
    As always, good to hear from you Bob! Hope you are well!

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  3. Jerry, what do you think of this sectional building?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Hospital-Type-B-Tomytec-1-150-N-scale-/200523526218?pt=Model_RR_Trains&hash=item2eb022304a

    Bob

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  4. Bob,

    I saw some poor images of these when they were first released, so thanks for the link to the good photo! I think they're cool, and looks like they have clear plastic for windows! They do look like they'd be difficult to stack for more height though.

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  5. hello jerry ,

    A very nice combination ,you 're always at the top on the building !!

    Pascal

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  6. Mike & Nik1/29/12, 8:02 AM

    Getting ready to add this building to our layout. We were messing around with adding the extra floors as well.

    What did you need to remove to add the extra floors? Just the little nibs that would normally "lock" into the section below it? Anything else need to be changed to interlock the 2 buildings?

    What tool did you use to cut out the window sections? I've tried cutting other buildings and ended up with a mess.

    Thanks-
    Mike & Nik

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  7. @ Mike and Nik - Yes, you got it, to get the sections together I remember just removing the tabs.

    To remove the window sections, I used a both razor saw, a dremel tool, and a file (to smooth out my cuts). It was a lot of work!

    This post has a little more info on how I modified mine:
    http://quinntopia.blogspot.com/2011/08/tomytec-showa-office-61-modification.html

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