Sunday, March 29, 2015

Second Hand Finds (Scenery)

I found a selection of Hot Wheels City Sets at a second hand store for very cheap.  These are play sets with a bit of road and a small building or two.  The buildings all look grossly undersized for 28mm, but actually have pretty decent details on most sides, and the doors look good.  I started with a few sets.
So many bright colors
Some decent textures
Most of the buildings are glued or ultrasonic welded to the streets.  The light blue parking structure was held on with screws, which made life easy.  I don't recommend disassembling the glued buildings, they can be a pain, but they will come off with some bending and prying.  (and some liberal swearing...)
Pieces removed from streets
Survivor Anna for scale reference
You can see the texture on the purple building.  The door looks really good scale-wise.  I am curious what to do with the buildings.  The purple one will make a good shed.  The blue parking structure will make a decent raised platform for industrial or docks or something.  The others can wait for now.

I picked these two to work on first, the blue platform required just some glue and paint to make useful.  The purple shed needs a bit more effort.  I cut around the door, to make it functional.  I am using a simple card hinge (piece of card glued to the wall and the door so it can bend).  I have some black corrugated card from scrap booking supplies that will work as a roll-up door.  This leaves me with a bit of a quandary, do I cut off the roof (making it removable) and mount the rest of a floor, or do I leave it without a base or floor?

For now, I leave it without a floor.  I can always cut the roof off later.  Some paint and drybrushing is all it needs to be ready for the table.
Door into the shed
Roll up garage door
I found some terracotta color Krylon spray paint for plastic at Walmart on clearance for $1.50.  That made a great base coat for the brick.  I'll be using that on more structures in the future.  I will keep an eye for more of the city sets as well.  They didn't cost much, and for a couple of hours work (including drying time) they make good quick buildings.
Anna uses the door
Roll up door removed
Possible floor
I do with the garage was larger, it is not big enough for a car.  It will make a decent storage shed or add on for another building (like a maintenance shed) or a utility structure.  I have a few more structures to work on, but I got the couple finished pretty quick and easy.
Two structures done
I'd have more done but the Walking Dead season finale is tonight, plus I managed a little more of the road scenario (I'll get the bat reps up soon).  I'll share the other buildings as I work on them.


  1. Great find and it looks soo much better when painted... great work.

  2. Fantastic job Steve!
    Second hand toys are a great way to get cheap buildings and vehicles. You've totally transformed that purple toy into a great scenery piece.

    1. Thanks! I agree toys can be a great source for some cheap scenery. I have been keeping eye out for some useful ones. If you can find them cheap enough, they can't be beat!

  3. Haha ! Brilliant! It really fits well!

  4. from the first picture I thought you had gone a bit mad but the final pics prove what a good eye for re purposing you have!!! they look great when finished and am curious as to what the others will look like. Great work!!

    1. Thank you! While I was working on them, I thought perhaps it wasn't the best idea... The textures are what make them useful for buildings.

  5. An intriguing mix of bits and pieces that has a great potential, as shown by your excellent conversion. Looking forward to seeing what you do with the rest.
    I'd veeb teempted to raise the "platform" on some faux pillars, it looks a bit too squat in it;s present form.

    1. Glad you liked the conversion!

      I may raise the platform, but the height isn't too short. I want it for a loading dock sort of structure, so we'll see how it turns out.

  6. Aargh - what bright colours of plastic! Oh, wait - is that really the same building in the later pictures :-) ? What a transformation - very nice.

    1. The blinding colors almost made it too hard to see the useful textures. A little paint and it was easier to deal with...

      Glad you like it!