Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

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Gordon234
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Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Gordon234 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:22 pm

Hello!
I am modelling a circa 1920's-30's GWR branchline, and have had good success using brownish orange sandpaper glued down for country roads and lanes. Now I am building a Metcalfe Models brick viaduct that will lead down a hill into a little village, and wanted to try something a little different for the road and street surfaces. I already have some of the Metcalfe Models self adhesive stone paving slabs ( PO210 ) that I will be using for sidewalks, but am undecided about the actual road surfaces. Cobblestones? light grey sandpaper? Concrete printouts ( Scalescenes )? Other?
Any suggestions you might have for me would be much appreciated. Thanks!

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Bufferstop
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Bufferstop » Mon Jun 18, 2018 5:20 pm

A village in the 20s/30s may not have had paved roads, packed and rolled gravel perhaps. Take a look at Pendon museum's Pendon Parva village set in this period.
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Gordon234
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Gordon234 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 5:47 pm

Thanks for putting me on to the Pendon Museum layout. What a magnificent setting, with plenty of good ideas for roads!

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TimberSurf
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby TimberSurf » Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:06 pm

I use fine grit carborundum emery paper and paint grey. My sidewalks are paper that is a design I have created myself and printed. The white lines are nail art tape!

Preprinted has a great look from afar but lacks a 3D element for close up inspection on buildings, but is probably OK for flat surfaces. (I use my paper print for platform paving. I personally think the individual tiles of paving creates gaps that are oversize (and takes forever to lay).

I think cobble sounds right for the era, look at some plastic sheets from slaters or SE Finecast etc.Link
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End2end
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby End2end » Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:50 pm

TimberSurf wrote:The white lines are nail art tape!

I cannot seem to find the right product on the bay. Can you possibly add a link please Timbersurf?
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Gordon234
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Gordon234 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:54 pm

Thanks for the ideas, Timbersurf. The concept of fine grit sandpaper sounds really good. I have also read elsewhere that rubbing two pieces together lightly before gluing down helps to create a weathered look. Will investigate the cobblestone link you gave, as well. Cheers!

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Mountain
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Mountain » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:00 pm

One thing you will need to know. Most traffic on country roads were horse drawn and because of this, the centre of the road (Most roads were single track roads) was a strip of grass and the parts where the wheels went was either gravel/duff/stone mix or it was tarmac for richer areas or well used roads. It was only pain roads that went through towns and cities which didnt have this. The central grass piece had a track worn into it where horses wore a grove.
Three wheeled cars and motorbike and sidecar outfits were purposely built to have a suitable width and ground clearance (Hence cars like Reliant Regal had larger wheels then the later Reliant Robins) to cope with these roads. Four wheeled cars also used to have better ground clearance then they do today for this very reason.
I noticed here in Wales as a child in ths 1970's there were still many of these roads which by then had two strips of tarmac with grass in the middle. By the '60's here in Wales the majority of B roads had lost this central grass strip and most A roads had lost this years before.

It is interesting when one looks at the designs of older cars and realised what they were made to cope with. The designers knew what they were doing. The early roads were simply not suitable to take a modern car and even a few four wheel drives would not cope with the trench like ruts that the old cars had to negotiate. It was well known for certain roads like near here that they had a winch at the top of the steep hill to help pull the horse and carts up along with early cars and lorries. It wasn't just the gradient but the lack of grip on the slippery surface which made them need the winch. Thin narrow wheels and tyres were the most suitable wheels to grip through a clay type of mud.
Last edited by Mountain on Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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TimberSurf
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby TimberSurf » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:01 pm

Try searching for 'nail art striping tape white' or 'nail art striping tape yellow'

0.6mm would be good for N gauge and 1.2mm for OO gauge (sizes quoted are inaccurate)
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Gordon234 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:23 pm

Thanks for that interesting information, Mountain, about the old cars and the obstacles they faced. No wonder the railways held sway as long as they did! I am definitely going to add some ‘green’ to the Center of my country lanes...

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End2end
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby End2end » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:44 pm

Thanks Timbersurf. I've found it now. :wink:
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Mountain
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Mountain » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:58 pm

Dont forget the very centre of the green will also have a track where the horses hooves and three wheeled cars use, so essentually you have three tracks and if there is tarmac, only the outer two tracks would be tarred. The centre would not.
I have fond memories of my dads Reliants going down such roads. Another thing I recall is with one or two roads (Listed as unclassified) you could need to open and close gates. I remember one road in Mid Wales in the mid 1970's where there were six gates to open and close behind. Cattle grids were normally only used on the roads with heavier traffic.
Our last untarred local unclassified road was finally tarred in the mid to late 1990's. This had been a stone/chipping lane with grass in the middle and it had lost its central track as fewer Reliants and horses had used it by then.
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Gordon234
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Re: Road surfaces for 1920's-30's

Postby Gordon234 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:37 am

Your description of the rural roads in Wales was fascinating to read! Our rural roads in Quebec faced many of the same obstacles, and some of them are still not maintained as they should be! Thanks for your feedback.


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