12.19.2011

Kibri 7402 "Bahnhof Kehl" Kit bash: The "Kehl Building"

I've been working (for what seems a very long time) on a kit bash of one of the coolest looking older structures out there.  The focus of this kit bash is Kibri # 7402, which is called the "Kehl Station."  The above photo is what I won on eBay two years ago, and then last year I picked up an un-built kit as well.

The kit in the the original box looks like this - which seem to be quite rare and hard to find (it wasn't very easy for me to decide to finally use this kit, but I decided I don't wan't to become too much of a collector rather than a modeller!):
Although the original kit is composed of a very long station and a tall office tower section, I was mostly interested in the opportunities that the 6 story high rise section of this station provides.   I was fortunate to find an unbuilt version of this kit and a built up section of the office tower which are the basis for the scratch-build.

Kibri produces this same station in HO scale, and also produced a similar station with the product # 7400 (see box below) which has a much smaller office tower.
Although the original kit is actually one very long station, I was mostly interested in the opportunities that the 6 story high rise section of this station provides.

So I started with the painful (and not recommended!) task of trying to dissassemble the old kit. Lots of pieces get broken (the corner edges, the window frames, your patience, interest in the hobby, etc...) which later had to be repaired or covered up.  When I was done, the parts looked like this:

I then had to figure out a plan to do the best job of 'merging' the old pieces with the un-built kit:  This requires a lot of carefully cutting (using both a razor saw or hobby knife) and careful gluing. 
 
For the ground floor I need to do something different as I didn't feel the original office tower ground floor would look right for a separate building.  I re-purposed some of the pieces from the un-built Kehl station kit and was able to use them to create the ground floor windows and doors:
I decided to take a bit of a short cut with this building and not add interior details for any of the upper floors.  The ground floor however would need a nice looking shopping look.   I decided to create my own using strips of foam core and some self-created images and graphics of grocery store shelves. If you'd like a copy of my shelves and office backgrounds, its available here to download in pdf form.
 
Additional preparation was required for the store and building signs.   I typically use a combination of LED's, strips of clear, thick acrylic plastic (a pain to cut!), self-printed water-slide decals and even laser printed color transparencies!  Whew!  A lot of work, but the extra touch of having illuminated signs is important to me (if your curious about some of my LED wiring techniques, check this post or this post).   The below shows the vertical sign with two SMD LED's on the top and bottom almost ready for attachment to the building.
I added some extra interior bracing to make the building as square as possible, and used some very dark window tinting materiel for the windows.  The below shows the back wall.
The below photo shows the front and back sections almost ready for final assembly.  Note the rather quick and easy lighting method used on the building section shown on the right.   Its merely a long strip of SMD LED's that come pre-wired on an adhesive strip (available on eBay for decent prices).  As it turned out, its a bit dimmer than I wanted...my original fear was that it would be TOO bright, so I added piece of plain white paper behind the tinted windows to block unsightly views into the building shell and 'dim' the light a bit.  It dimmed it too much. It still works, but a minor disappointment in retrospect!
And...wallah!  The completed "Kehl Building"!

The store on the bottom floor turned out really well I think ("Blokker" was my choice....based on a prototype out of the Netherlands.  I liked the name and the logo!). Which is interesting, as this was realtively easy and inexpensive to pull off (the figures in the store are some of the cheap Chinese ones mentioned here).
And here it is on the layout...I have nearly a full street lit and complete now!  You can see how relatively dim the lights are for the upper stories, but it works.
This wasn't the original location, but I think it works well on this corner.
A close-in shot from another side:
Okay! Another building done! Whew! This took a while, but its always a nice feeling of accomplishment when its placed on the layout!  But now I can move onto another one!

Thanks for reading!

8 comments:

  1. Another triumph, Jerry! Makes me look forward to January when I can get back to work on my own layout!

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  2. If you want to take apart an old plastic building try putting it in the freezer for a few hours and then proceed to dismantle. For a number of plastic adhesives it helps greatly.

    Your plastic neon lights look great. I’m adding that idea to my Christmas holiday list of jobs 'to do'.
    Thanks
    Ross S
    North Berwick
    UK

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  3. Hey Jerry, this is looking fantastic! I like that first (night) view of the city...

    How do you like your own work?

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  4. I love it, as always.... good job!!

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  5. Congratulations Jerry on another great building. As always, your lighting effects are tops. And thanks for sharing store interior artwork. It scaled out just right when I printed it and plan to use a bit of it in a project I am currently working on.

    Happy Holidays,
    Brad

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  6. Thanks everyone, as always, for the kind comments!

    @ Sudasana - December is my time to catch up a bit on projects, so I know how you feel waiting to get back to things!

    @ Anonymous - Thanks for the tip! I have tried this before with another kit, but I'm not sure it made too much difference. It may depend on the type of glue?

    @ La Saucisse - I like COMPLETING my projects, but I often find stupid mistakes along the way that bother me a little, although I am generally happy with the overall result. I know that my skills are improving as some of my earlier kits need to be re-done!

    @ Dani - thank you!

    @ Brad - glad to hear the backgrounds were helpful! They are easy to put together, just a bit tedious, so I'm glad I could help someome out with them! Really enjoying your blog/work as well!

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  7. Jerry, for sure your skills are improving! I was actually having that exact same thought when I read the present post. "Damn, since I started to follow this blog a couple of years ago, he really improved."

    But you know, what is not perfect to you can be for us. We are usually too harsh on our own achievements.

    Merry christmas!

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  8. @ La Saucisse - Thank you very much for your encouragement! A Merry Christmas to you as well!

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