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Congress Mercado

Publication: Continental Modeller
Publication Date: June 2007



Bollinger Edgerly Scale Trains (B.E.S.T.) have added to their considerable range of structures with a kit for the Congress Mercado, a building located in Congress, Arizona (ref. 10300). Originally one of a row of seven or eight miners' houses dating back to before 1900, it was latterly a store and stood alone, and while it survives it is now derelict and dilapidated.

The kit includes laser-cut wood sides and windows, stripwood of various sizes, peel and stick roof sheets, real copper flashing, and ingenious laser-cut wooden jigs to speed and simplify the creation of the open rafters for the extension and awning roofs, and hold the awning supports.

The main board & batten and planked walls are laser cut, guaranteeing an accurate fit. The modeler must cut and fit stripwood for the concealed bracing, the window and door surrounds, the front wall capping, and the rafters for the extension and front awning.

The doors and window frames are also laser cut; the windows are especially fine, and feature two-piece sashes that can be assembled in any position. Glazing material is not provided.

The instructions run to nine sides of A4; they are thorough and helpful, illustrated with numerous colour photos- showing the prototype, the completed model, and the process step by step. Although the depth of field is often limited, the images are quite adequate for the purpose. A number of minor typographical errors are evident but none mask the sense. There is also a sheet of very useful same-size templates for cutting the supplied stripwood and ensuring the shingle strips are straight.

No special tools are required -most modelers will have what is required- and assembly should present no problems: the experienced will be familiar with the techniques, and as the building is not too large or complex it would make an ideal introduction to craftsman kits for the beginner.

As supplied, the kit will make up into a very good representation of the building as it was when new: of course, the real art will lie in recreating the weathered and decayed condition shown in the prototype pictures on the box and in the instructions (for which tips are given during the construction process).





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