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Beacon Hill Newbie!


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Hello! I just received the Beacon Hill for my birthday! I have wanted to build a dollhouse for a LONG time, and now that I have it I'm a little nervous! LOL I am making my list of supplies right now. My biggest challenge is that I live overseas and finding specific materials is not that easy. Most of my shopping will be online purchases, and I'm hoping that I won't have a problem finding stores that will ship to an APO! I am excited to get started, but I'm making myself remain calm so I can do this right the first time!

My first question is (and it's probably been asked a gazillion times!) where do I start?! I've read through the directions. I know I want to stain the sairs and wood trim. I want the floors to look like hard wood floors. Can I obtain this look by just staining the floors in the kit? When I stain the wood, do I apply the stain first, then seal? Should this be my very first step?

Thanks for all of your help! I am looking forward to your guidance and getting to know all of you!

Brooke

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Welcome to the forum Brooke, you will find lots nad ots of expertis accumulated here along with the willingness to share it with others as well.

As for your questions regarding the Beacon Hill I know there are others who have built them and they can share their ideas with you as well. If you have the opportunity to take pictures and share with us that would be great as well. I have always liked the Beacon Hill myself andit is on my "wish lish" along with other lovley houses as well.

I do know what you mean about living overseas though since there aren't that many mini-sources locally where I live in Sweden but there are lots and lots of possibilities on the net to make "finds".

If you want to stain pieces of wood you do that before you "seal" them.

Looking forward seeing "the house of your dreams" so to speak.

Hugs

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Welcome to the forum, Brooke. When DS was stationed in Germany his APO addy took surface US postage so I cannot imagine a shipping problem. Tracy may have more info on that, as that was some years ago for us.

Other than the internet our closest mini sources are many hours' drive away for us, I began by buying a lot over the internet but in the past ten years I've found a few things I'm able to make myself ;) With the help of some of the books available I'm having lots of fun :D:D

As Anna pointed out & as you will find as you read the forum, there are a lot Beacon Hills being built/ worked on. Have fun, ask questions, share ideas.

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Hi and welcome. While I have not built the BH I always start by staining the floors (and anything else I want stained beacuse I try to do it all at once) You can score the floors lightly to give it more of a plank look but I usually just stain them.

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Welcome Brooke! :D

There are so many online resources out there that I'm sure you won't have a problem getting supplies! My favorite is www.miniatures.com and I also like our Tracy's website www.minisontheedge.com.

Reading the directions over is a good place to start. When you start building maybe dryfit things as you go along before you glue. Be sure to wallpaper or paint behind the STAIRS because after you put them in you won't be able to access that corner! Stain floors and railings before sealing them. You'll have to be careful though because you'll need to prime all your interior surfaces before you wallpaper or paint so you don't want to get paint on the floors that you're staining. I used the black walnut hardwood floors from miniatures.com. They turned out great! You can view pictures of my Beacon Hill at the link below.

Good luck and please share pictures with us! ;)

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You'll have to be careful though because you'll need to prime all your interior surfaces before you wallpaper or paint so you don't want to get paint on the floors that you're staining.

I use LOTS of asking tape & waxed paper :D

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you can make the floors look hardwood you can scribe the floors with a craft knife

to make a wood floor look I think Holly and a couple of others do this.

I am not so dedicated.... I use min-wax stain on the floors and a couple of coats of polyurethane over that. makes for nice looking floors. and some of the wood just stains beautifuly.

I do this while I am waiting for the prime to dry on the walls ...when every thing is dry I do another dryfit and start gluing.

have fun! cant wait to see what you do!

have you picked out any colors?

nutti :D

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I think I'm going to try that flooring method in my Buttercup/Canterbury house. I want to keep costs down in this house so I can spend more on the Willowcrest when I build it. :D I hope it turns out as nice as all of yours who've done it! ;)

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Brooke, In one of my building blogs I describe how I do the floors. I have a dentalpick-type tool I used to scribe the "boards" into the plywood, but it was too difficult to control along the straight edge so I use the back of the point of my utility knife (I use a boxcutter-type utility knife, a craft knife is great for mini furniture, but for most kit building I use a serious knife VERY carefully).

I leave everything intact in the plywood sheets until I'm ready to assemble, so I study the pictures to decide which rooms I want to have "hardwood" floors & I mask off the sections I don't want. With a pencil & ruler I mark the floor along both ends in intervals the width I want the "boards" and I use a steel straight edge & the utility knife to scribe lines the length of the room. I then go back and mark off 6" lengths, staggering every row 1.5"-2" and scribe the "board" ends. I use a small awl to poke "nails" in the ends of the "boards".

When I rub on the stain (old undershirt tees make wonderful stain applicators) magic happens as the lines between the "boards" & the "nails" take the stain more deeply and voila!, I have hardwood floors. I remove the masking tape and let the plywood sheet dry about an hour, then I seal all the sheets of plywood with clear sanding sealer. I haven't noticed that the sealer has any effect on the properties of wood glue to hold things together, but many people prefer to seal after assembly in case the glue doesn't hold as well as with bare wood. When the first side is dry I seal the second side; I let the sheets dry flat. I haven't had any problems with warping doing it this way.

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Thank you so much for expalining this Holly, I think I will use this methid for the Haunted house kit's bottomw floor where the book shop will be. That way I can even sand a little after staining it, giving the impression of "well walked areas" so to speak.

hugs

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