by: Frederick Boucher [ ]
Open-air Storage (Freilager)
Item: 14350 (HO scale - 1/87)
Series: Laser-Cut Minis
Open-air Storage is an extremely versatile model of NOCH Laser-Cut Minis series. NOCH uses laser technology to cut and etch highly detailed models of buildings, lumber, plants, and other models. NOCH currently advertises 67 of these sets in three scales: HO, TT, and N.
Open-air Storage (Freilager)This kit is packed in a label-backed end-opening carton. Inside are 12 parts on "sprues" of laser-cut medium pressboard sheets. For the freestanding structure the card is firm and smooth and colored in a dark wood brown. A tile roof is included plus a tile foundation, both are laser-textured. An illustrated instruction sheet printed in several languages guides the assembly process. Color PDF instructions are available from the NOCH website by clicking Click here for additional images for this review, below. No glue is included.
The structure is a post and beam design. The kit is built with four trusses elevated on posts, supporting a middle Warren truss, steadied by two outer end-to-end lateral beams with integral diagonal corner bracing. Atop this will set two single-piece rafter and purlin pieces, over which will set the roof sheet. It has a footprint of 3.94 x 2.76 x 1.69 in.(10 x 7 x 4.3 cm).
The posts fit into holes lased into the foundation. Notches in the bottom chord of the Warren truss fit into notches in the collar ties of the two middle trusses. The ends of the Warren butt against the end trusses -- no notches.
The components are precisely laser-cut. Surprisingly, not all edges are singed by the laser. The parts are cut through and held to their sheet by two very small connectors. They are easy to cut out.
DetailThe exterior sides of the end trusses and the bearing point truss beams have fine lines lased into them to simulate the joints of the beams.
Tiles are lased into the foundation. Around the edge of the foundation is a ground texture.
The roof: I can not tell if it is laser-sculpted or if NOCH pressed the tiles into the board.
No nail/bolt/plate detail is present.
Raise the Roof!This is a quick build. Cut the parts from their sheet by severing their connectors with a sharp blade. Make sure the foundation is flat on a level hard working surface. Then set the legs of the two middle trusses into their holes in the foundation. Do the same with the end trusses, being careful to ensure the etched joint detail faces outwards. Then take the Warren truss and align the notches with those in the center trusses. Drops of glue go into the notches and then the parts are joined. At the same time, have the end trusses spread out enough to not bind the ends og the Warren truss. Have drops of glue on the ends and butt them to the trusses.
Next, add the two outer lateral beams with corner braces, again being careful to ensure the etched joint detail faces outwards. These also fit to the trusses with notches. A little glue will do. I actually test-fit the structure to this point with no glue. It stood firm.
Capping OffWith the "hard part" over, I set the rafter and purlin parts onto the the trusses. Then I placed the tile roof upon it; the roof has a gap at the peak where the single sheet spreads apart. There is no roof beam. NOCH includes a length of tile to cap this.
This finishes the model as NOCH kitted it. It took me about 45 minutes. As is you have a smart looking model to add to your layout / diorama. However, clever modelers need not stop here...
Beyond the boxAn open shed with a tile roof? While I presume this is common in Europe today, what about 100 years ago? What about North American sheds? What about more than a shed?
I think this model is extremely versatile. A simple new roof can completely change the era and locale. To make it look like similar structures I see everyday where I live, I added two different roofs: corrugated metal; shake shingle. Other common roof materials are tar paper; asphalt shingle; metal panels; slate. I've even seen a roof of planking. If you are industrious enough, how about thatch?
Built OOB this is a fine little model. While looking it over I realized that it also makes a fine starting point for an enclosed building. Some siding material, with or without windows and doors, and you can have a barn, garage, or warehouse. Or with some simple scale lumber you can create a building under construction. We are only limited by our imagination.
ConclusionWhether you are a model railroader or a braille scale dioramaist, this is a nice little model for 1/72 through HO (1/87). It is quick and easy to assemble with sharply cut parts. If I have anything to critique it is the foundation is thin and easily warped, and that the ends of the center truss simply butt against the end trusses.
This model is very good and a great value for the money. It has great potential for kitbashing and modifying to any era and prototype.
I heartily recommend the model.
We thank NOCH for providing this sample; please tell sellers and vendors you saw this model here -- on Railroad Modeling!
Click here for additional images for this review.