Neat huh?

John's Trains & Layout

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Union Station

My magnum opus. An all-consuming, culminating project that is still not completed after more than 3 years. Lots of "firsts" spawned by this project.

Union Station Blog

West Park Tower

No story on the name, other than my wife was at the time working in a building complex in Tyson's Corner called West Park. This was the very first large custom building I made, and is still the tallest at 22 stories.

The Berliner

No story, and I'll take a better name. It looks like a fancy hotel, and there's one that looks a little bit like this one called the Hotel Berlin, which has the signature green patina pented roof. The facades are not laser-cut, but made from 35mm slide sleeves. (Seriously.)

West Park Tower B

Just an attempt to basically re-create the first one but using the laser-cut facades. Came out much better.

Le Vitre Noir

French for "black glass", or "black windows". My greatest failure (to date). This is made from translucent black (very dark bronze tint) acrylic.


Complete with slurpee machine graphics, arcade games, and pinball machines.

Every Gen-X'er needs one of these!

Truth Plaza

Gray = black mixed with white. The truth is never black & white, but shades of gray. Mostly, this was a project to provide photos to show that the laser-cut facades could be easily cut to different shapes to make different structures - in this case, a smaller cement-facade building.

Tan building (needs a name!)

This started as an attempt to make a building to sell directly on eBay, to test the market for a pre- fab building of this size, etc. I timed every piece of the labor involved, to get a sense for how long it takes to make something like this from start to finish. Half-way through, it became obvious that it is far from feasible, most-likely yielding a labor rate near minimum wage (before they raised it).

So, I have this neat little tan building...

Cousin Suites

This is the first "mirror" building, and really just an experiment to see if a mirror-type building could be feasible with the acrylic/mylar sheets and using the venerable and proven square wooden dowels as the structure. This project introduced me to Formula 560 ("Canopy Glue"). It's made of bronze mirror acrylic. Bronze = Copper + Tin = Cu + Sn = Cusn, which looks & sounds like Cousin.

Why not?

Miramar (ongoing project)

This was why Cousin Suites was made - to build a smaller mirror building, developing techniques and principles to be used on the goal: a taller, blue-mirror skyscraper. Named after Miramar Marine Corps Air Station in San Diego. (Latin) Mir: to view, or see. Mar: the ocean. The blue mirrors look like they are reflecting the ocean.

Conway Bridge

"A Suspension of Disbelief"

There is a real Conway Bridge somewhere in England, which is a suspension bridge based on chains, or at least the medieval equivalent of chains.

Cell Tower (2.0)

My first attempt at this was all-custom, and looked like it. This second version is all laser-cut, and included the development of templates to hold the cell amplifiers in place while gluing them to the triangular frames. I eventually made these available for sale as DIY kits.

Cell Towers Blog

Black Glass Tower

(Future project, to be named)
Finally, a black glass skyscraper. Made of the same "bronze" tinted acrylic as Le Vitre Noir, this is a double-stacked monster 48" tall. It is not made of the mirror acrylic, but I do plan to use some kind of black metalized mirror tape to form the horizontal floor dividers. The vertical window lines will be the same 1/16" ChartPak tape used on Cousin Suites and Mirimar. Because it's not a mirror, it can be lit internally. Office interior photos printed onto full-sheet white sticker labels, cut to size & applied directly onto the acrylic interior. Mini-florescents expected to be used for illumination, based on experiements with Le Vitre Noir: the bronze tint is so dark that it takes a bright light to shine through. Wish me luck!

Atlas Switch Tower

My take on the popular Atlas kit.