This was something I have been both looking forward to and dreading at the same time. Crafting the roof is fun, but making sure it is shaped correctly is a bit nerve-wracking for a beginner.
The first step was creating the templates from the instructions. I cut the shapes out from the paper instructions, traced them on thin cardboard, and cut them out from that. There are three templates: upper roof ends, lower roof ends, and inside the bar for the celestory windows.
The first step was to sand the ends down and checking that the template pieces “fit” with the curve I was carving. The trick is to consistently check this fit: you can always sand more if you need to, but you can’t easily add material back.
The next step was to create the bar that starts above the celestory windows and curves down into the lower roof end. Using the third template, I cut the bottom of the curve piece out before gluing these pieces onto the ends.
From this, I sanded these down to fit the curve of the roof I had previously created. The last component was making a curved piece to fit inside the previous pieces. I made each one too large and then sanded them down to fit them in.
At the end of this, my roof was complete. It wasn’t quite as hard as I may have feared, but it still required being careful and taking steps.
Now what remains is primarily side and undercarriage details. The LaBelle kit came with a set of Tichy brake components, but there are no instructions for these. I also need to order screws for the couplers and trucks to put them in place.