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"Buildings Suitable For 54mm Old West Gunfights" Topic

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617 hits since 15 Mar 2017
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Gone Fishing16 Mar 2017 8:06 a.m. PST

Hello Gents,

I'm firing up for my next project (54mm Old West) and hope some of you might have some ideas regarding buildings.

My top criteria would be that they be pretty durable and not too expensive. I'm thinking to get 8-10 of them and would like a mix of the usual suspects: saloon (!!!), sheriff's office/jail, an undertaker, barn-like structures, and the odd assortment of non-descript places. They do NOT have to have interiors our games take place entirely on streets, roofs, etc. I credit it to the feisty locals hunkering down indoors.

Here are the sources I've sniffed around so far:

1.) Playmobil: one of the great joys of playing in this scale is that one can use Playmobil, arguably the greatest set of toys ever created. They are durable, break down, and have a appealing look to them. The trouble is that because they are toys they emphasize indoor areas, which means most buildings are only three dimensional. I could get over this, I suppose, but it still jars a little.
2.) Fisher-Price: far too cutesy.
3.) Lemax: see above.
4.) Conte/TSSD: these look nice, but are in expanded foam, which can be a bit of a nuisance. They are also pricey.
5.) Timpo: Years ago Timpo made quite a range of buildings for their Old West figures. They come in a range of very vibrant, "toy" colours, which can be whimsical but might prove to be oppressive in large numbers. They also all seem to reside in Germany which adds to the nuisance factor.

So that's it. I keep thinking there must be a toy range I've forgotten; something made in hard-wearing plastic for kids, but not nursery school level.

Any thoughts would be much appreciated!

shaun from s and s models Supporting Member of TMP16 Mar 2017 8:19 a.m. PST

i made a lot from boxes and wood strip like lolipop and toffee apple sticks.
you can still get some of the britains and timpo buildings but they are now on the collectors radar so prices are high, sadly.
sorry no pics

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP16 Mar 2017 10:14 a.m. PST

The BMC 54mm ACW boxed set has plastic buildings.


I was going to suggest Barzso (for adobe buildings) and TSSD.

Some people use bird houses or craft houses from Hobby Lobby or Michaels.

New Ray makes a town play set that has some building facades.

John Leahy16 Mar 2017 1:36 p.m. PST

Build your own Adobe buildings. Easy and cheap.

Gone Fishing16 Mar 2017 2:15 p.m. PST

Many thanks for the suggestions. Building my own, either Shaun's popsicle stick idea or adobe, might be a good idea. John, do you recommend a material for making one's own adobe?

EDIT: Done some searching on Google and found several DIY videos for school adobe projects. They use a modelling clay that air dries (forget the brand name). This might be a good material – the one thing that worries me is that most of these projects are in 1/72 at the biggest – I'm not sure it would work so well in 1/32. Still worth trying, I suppose.

nnascati Supporting Member of TMP16 Mar 2017 3:56 p.m. PST

You'd have to build a base building from foam core, then apply the clay or spackle.

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP16 Mar 2017 5:39 p.m. PST

Yep. Foam core and then spackle. You could probably get by with texture paint as well, if you wanted to go that route.

Gone Fishing16 Mar 2017 6:59 p.m. PST

Thank you, guys!

Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP16 Mar 2017 7:39 p.m. PST

Work began some months ago on a range of basic 54mm Old West buildings as self-assembly card stock models sold as PDF's.

I am sending you "The Undertaker" gratis to give you an idea of what you may be able to get for $10.00 USD, plus the cost of some 3/16"/5mm foam core for backing the walls, roof, and plank walkway in front of the building.

If you like what you see, I can provide the others for you as I produce them, and in the order you would prefer.

I'll also send you some information on assembly of such models you may find useful in other applications.

Please share your reactions with the rest of us here at TMP!


pink panzer Inactive Member17 Mar 2017 1:11 a.m. PST

I'd echo the words of support for the BMC and TVAG buildings.
I was lucky enough to pick up a load of wooden Wild West buildings last year – I think many were made by the French Starlux company in the 1960s or 70s. You can see them in action here: link

Gone Fishing17 Mar 2017 9:13 a.m. PST

I appreciate the new comments very much. TVAG, PM sent. That is really beyond the call of duty – thank you!

Pink Panzer, I've bookmarked your blog for future inspiration. Must say I'm much intrigued you are using the Matrix games for your gunfights – I remember reading his articles in MWAN years ago and being quite intrigued, but have never got round to trying them in an actual game. I'd love to hear any thoughts you might have on how they work for gunfights.

Second, if you ever decide to get rid of some of those buildings, let me know!

Can't tell you all how I appreciated the guidance. If we could all amble down to the saloon I'd buy beers for the lot of ya!

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