Monday, June 11, 2012

Woodland Scenics Road System

I'm giving the WOODLAND SCENICS ROAD SYSTEM a shot and really have mixed feelings about it. Overall, it's doing what it's supposed to do, however the videos posted about it's ease of use are only true if you have done it a few times before, I think.

The steps are simple:
• Lay down their tape on the far sides of your road lines
• Mix the powder
• Pour
• Drag the scraper and fill
• Sand and remove tape
• Paint

Easy, right? Well, yes for the most part it is.

I used a milk container for the mixing. That way I could just toss it when I was done. This stuff is plaster, so it'll wreck your pipes if you're not careful. That worked well.

But, the ease of the fill scraping was not 100%. A video for the product showed an expert laying itall down with ease, but, like anything else, practice makes perfect. It was much easier by the end of the process.

The Nightmare of the Tape! Horrid!
The most frustrating part of the whole system is the tape. It goes down with ease - I was very pleased with it. It went around curves well and was easy to lay out. However it is NOT easy to remove. The glue tears away from the tape, the tape sticks to the layout and breaks and the pull off works about 10% of the time. I'm now having to add a painful scraping of glue and tape bits to the process. Maybe the tape is old? It's REALLY making me frustrated. I need to listen to MODEL RAIL RADIO and chill out when I do it, I guess. :)

I think the results will be worth the headache, but I'd be interested in knowing more about the tape and if this is common or the product of the tape being old or stored in the sun too long at the shop. The "Smooth It" product portion of the set is grand and stood up to all the things being said about it so far. I'll see how painting it goes. It did crack in a few small spots as the tape came off, but it was an acceptable amount. Not much at all.

Have you used this product? If so, what were your thoughts?


  1. This is something similar to what I've been doing for years using sheetrock mud with a bit of black latex paint mixed in to get a shade of dark gray. Instead of tape I was using styrene strip temporarily stuck down with white glue.

    It's messy but you can get just the shape you want and it looks good.

    1. Seems very similar. Really, the big downside here was the tape sticking. Really frustrating. This Smooth-it product is just plaster, really. Fancy branding. :)
      Sheetrock mud - good call there. And mixing the color directly in is really smart. I needed separation between areas that would be dark road color and others that would be more cement and lighter, so mixing the color in directly wasn't an option, but saving that step of painting sounds awesome. heheh
      Thanks for looking!