Monday, 5 May 2014

Alternative Roofing Materials

Even before trying the faux-brickwork paste on the walls, my mother had some misgivings about attempting a similar trick for the roof. In theory, it wouldn't be that complicated - possibly simpler than the walls, even, because the roof is made up of large, flat, even surfaces, broken up only by the chimney stack on one side. Frankly, it seemed like a bit of a faff because the roof was a much larger area to be covered, larger than the tile template and so requiring and awful lot of matching-up, whereas each wall section was smaller in width, at least.

Thankfully, other options were available. The roof was originally just papered but, as the photo in the very first post shows, paper didn't really pass the test of time, and much of it was peeling back in the 80s. Sticking on individual tiles would have become even more of a chore than using the tile paste, and strips of tile would still need to be carefully aligned. The most practical solution available came in the form of large sections of embossed MDF, such as these from The Dolls House Emporium.

At 206x618mm, they were certainly large enough to cover the front and rear faces of the roof, though until they were cut to requirement, we had no way to be sure they would be sufficient to cover the sides as well.

There was the additional complication that a solution like this would require the corner seams to be covered, lest they clash or appear uneven, but there were solutions for that, too. Rather than filling the gaps with Polyfilla or glue, there were L-shaped wood strips available which could be cut to the required length to simulate a row of ridge tiles. The only problem then would be accessibility to the wires and sockets in the 'attic'. We had also started to discuss a full 'loft conversion' for the house, adding another floor to cover the trailing wires. Affixing 'ridge tiles' might complicate that sort of thing and, if we were planning on hinging the roof, we wouldn't be able to add it to the summit of the house as it would block the hinge...

...Still, however you look at it, it was going to be far simpler than mixing up the roofing paste and larking about with the template, and certainly better than working with individual tiles or even strips of tiles... Plus, these are embossed to look like overlapping tiles, whereas the paste-and-template option would still look more like brickwork.

Since these parts were ordered during the run-up to Christmas, we got a free gift along with the order - a rather cool-looking miniature Christmas sack filled with individually-wrapped gifts. Quite a nice and unexpected gift with the order, and something to add a seasonal touch to the dolls' house in years to come...

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