by: Darren Baker [ ]
Originally published on:
MiniArt has released a large number of buildings, structures, and diorama products since they hit the market. These Vac-Formed styrene structures and full buildings are loved by some, unused by many, and disliked by others. Back in November 2011, MiniArt announced that they were in the process of adding a newly designed roof to their range, this product was the European Tiled Roof and I will be taking a look of exactly what is included in this set.
This product is packaged in a surprisingly large box: 340mm (13.5 inches) x 240mm (9.5 inches) x 60mm (2.3/8th inches). Inside this large box you will find;
4 Vac Formed sheets
4 injection moulded plastic parts
Black and white printed instruction sheet
These parts are packed in a single plastic bag.
Starting with the Vac Formed portion of this kit first the tiled portion; each of the tiled sections are 247mm (9 ¾ in.) x 147mm (5 & 11/16ths). On each of these tiled forms you also have the ridge tile portion of the roof, meaning that unless you mess up when cutting the parts free you just started your Vac-Formed spares box. The tiled roofs have excellent detail with slight variations and subtle textile, which when painted and washed should give you a very convincing finish.
The underside of the roof depicting the laths and beams are 247mmx 147mm, on these two forms you also get 2 chimney halves which allows you to have 2 chimneys on the roof if desired, or again increases your spares box. Detail is again excellent and depending on your painting skills provides the opportunity for an eye catching area of the roof if it can be seen.
The injection moulded parts consists of 4 identical sprues which each contain 4 lengths of gutter, one of which has the drop outlet moulded on it, the guttering parts do provide enough length to have a full run on each edge of the roof. There are 3 lengths of down spout each of which is just over 40mm (1.5 inches) long, this gives you a scale drop length of 27 ft. for each side. You can also, if desired or needed, use down spout elbows and elbow spouts near the ground. These sprues do have a little flash on them which will need cleaning up but that should not create any issues for anyone, you may be thinking why does a new product have flash on the mouldings? The answer to that is simple, the moulding are, I believe, included in all of the roof kits and I suspect a number of the building kits as well.
If you need a roof for a structure you are building for a diorama or other reason these products from MiniArt are worth considering, as they provide a quick and easy way of having a realistic roof for any project. I will admit the Vac-Formed items are not my material of choice as it involves a whole new skill set for those used to standard kit building, but to help with this MiniArt has a section on their website to help guide you through both the construction stages and painting stages, for which they deserve praise.