by: Scott Lodder [ ]
Originally published on:
VLS has made a mark on solid packing and shipping. When you get this kit it comes in a nice solid heavy cardboard box with a ‘box art’ sleeve. It’s all taped closed to keep everything in place. Inside everything is packaged very nicely. There are layers of parts all separated by thin sheets of bubble wrap packing material. This kit won’t suffer from any long distance shipping problems. A very nice touch when you are investing your hard earned money on these kits.
This kit is 100% resin. The resin is a very ‘workable’ cream-colored resin. All the parts are molded in this traditional VLS resin. This kit is a nice large kit and has eight main parts and a dozen smaller detail parts. There is one decal on decal paper.
There are no instructions included in this kit and it shouldn’t be too hard to review the box art and figure out how the pieces go together. Bob Letterman has done a great job on the box art and really shows off how well the kit can be finished. Ben Jakobsen did a great job molding all the masters and the detail comes through during the molding process.
This kit will build into a nice three-walled kit (the backside is open). There is a porch with a roof out front, and a simple two-piece peaked roof. On top of the porch roof is a broad signboard to identify the building with the decal. In the detail pack you will find window frames, door and porch pillars. Notice the great little ‘pass through’ door detail on the porch – very cool.
This is a 1/32 building and is quite large. You will certainly have room to build an interior if you wish. The molding is primarily from one-piece molds. This leave the one surface flat and lacking any detail. All the one-sided pieces are molded so the inside is ‘blank’. This is good kit planning, it leaves you with just inside walls to ‘scratch’ details if necessary. There is no floor or ceiling with this kit. This may push your decision to shy away from an interior. It’s a simple square box that would not be very difficult to scratch build an interior if you want to go that route. Just plan ahead, you now know you’ll need interior wall details, a ceiling and floor. There are nice windows throughout that can give viewers a glimpse into your scratch creations, as well as an open back.
Ben Jakobsen did a great job on this kit. He has mastered reproducing wood grain details in small scale. This kit shows this off wonderfully. The roof shingles are wooden shingles and every last one is a masterpiece of detail. The posts that hold up the porch roof are all wood and nicely detailed with great grain. The porch itself is detailed right down to nail heads at the end of each board. Look at the detail of the front wall, each board is unique and will take a wash to show off the grain wonderfully.
The sidewalls are made of bricks you can tell Ben uses individual bricks to make the master. This translates to a greatly detailed wall. The overall consistency is great and the individual brick construction really shines on this kit. The alternate method is to scribe bricks in to a large piece of plaster. Scribing is a quick solution. The quick solution does not always translate into nice parts. Ben does No take this route.
Taking a close look at the detail parts is a journey in small tight detail. There is no overscale problem here. I think that VLS has really stepped up to the challenge. The window frames are exquisite and well scaled. There is some flash that you will have to remove. When you do you will need to be careful not to damage the frames. The doors are just as good as the rest of this kit. There are hinges molded into the doors as well as nail details and metal bracing. You can see the wood grain on every piece. There are various metal hinges, plank supports, and nails/bolts. There are a few details that suffer from molding bubbles. A touch of putty will cure this. These are some of the nicest doors I’ve seen from a detail aspect.
I think VLS has really come through on this kit. The Streets of Loredo line is getting better and better. The sculpting of this whole kit is really nice.
If you like modeling Western figures this building looks like it will drop into place and become a fantastic diorama piece or a great backdrop piece. Notice the nice ‘fit channel’ above the front ‘pass through’ door; a prime example of excellent kit making.
You will work a bit, the roof sections are poured to scale and this means a thin piece. This size resulted in some very minor warping. A strong two-part epoxy will hold your kit together; you won’t have to use any additional heart treatment to straighten these parts. The thin window frames may arrive a bit warped also; again no problems a bit of resin glue can’t solve.
The overall detail on this kit is fantastic. Viewers will be drawn to the overall appearance and ‘wow factor’ this building brings.
Construction looks simple enough and VLS resin takes all kinds of paints and weathering. You won’t have any problems blending this building into a dusty Wild West scene.
The subject is nice; Wells Fargo is a well known Wild West industry. It is very nicely executed.
I'd like to thank VLS for this kit for review