Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Paper models from JR West

Don't have enough fancy models by Kato, Tomix and Microace? Time for scissors, glue and a bit of fun! Whether you have a kid who is so keen about making something for his toy railroad with his/her hands, or you feel you are that kid yourself, there's a good chance there are quite a few paper models of Japanese prototype buildings and vehicles that will most probably suit your needs. The only trouble is these models are exclusively posted at Japanese websites, so once in a while take your search in one hand, Google Translate in the other - and here we go!
One of the most exciting aspects of searching (for me) is that sometimes you find something better than what you've been looking for. This time it is the website of JR West Railway Company that contains quite a number of paper models, including:

  • Simple train station of the Western region
  • Grade crossing
  • Tunnel
  • Brick two-stall engine-house
  • Platforms and overpass
  • More kids' stuff like pictures that need coloring, screensavers with painted steam locomotives 
  • A whole bunch of track elements, simple models of locomotives and multiple-unit trains (even the Shinkansens!)
And if you feel these are models just for kids (well, Iactually they are) - try your hand at the former Nijo  station (above).

The website contains no less than five sections of paper models and fun things, and there are also sub-cathegories in dropdown menus. Browse the sections - and assemble a toy-train scene, or use the structure print-outs as a base for scratchbuilding projects.

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