Jump to content

Kit-bashing a Tab-and-Slot house?

Recommended Posts

FurMama's post here reminded me that I have two Greenleaf kits (somewhere! I haven't seen them in months!) that I had once intended to bash. Yeah, I know, another project I'll probably never get to. I didn't want to hijack her thread with my own project and questions so I'll start anew. The kits are this one:


That brought up the question of just how hard is it to kit-bash a tab-and-slot house? Can you reverse them by flipping over the pieces? I know it's more involved than that but I think you get what I'm asking.

I've never built a tab-and-slot house before. I owned one but I didn't build it. Way back in the day when Michael's stopped carrying Greenleaf products, I got a smokin' deal on their already-built Beacon Hill display model. What a mistake that was! I eventually gave up on that mess and set it out on the curb with a "Free to Good Home" sign. Mind you, that is in NO WAY slamming Greenleaf. Trying to fix up that shoddily constructed hot-glue-gunned-POS was a nightmare I never should have attempted. ANYWHO . . .

I finally managed to find my silly mock-up of what I'd intended to do with my two kits. You're all the experts on this, can it be done?

Chantilly Kit Bash.jpg

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Kells said:

...how hard is it to kit-bash a tab-and-slot house? Can you reverse them by flipping over the pieces?...

Have you read any of the building blogs?  We bash things all the time.  When I built my Fairfields to become a Bar Harbor summer cottage I built one whole kit inside out; I opened up the tower in one all the way down to the ground floor to hang a Foucault's Pendulum and joined the sides of the other tower to the rest of the third floor to make a utility bathroom.  The only reason I didn't join them together was for access to all the rooms so it could be played with.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I didn't mean to sound snappish, the thin wood of the tab & slot kits is just SO easy to work with when it comes to bashing!  I can understand your asking if you haven't worked with it before.  And the next time you get your hands on a hot glue built kit, a heat gun or even a hair dryer will take that pitiful thing back apart into its elemental pieces and scrape off so it can be rebuilt properly with wood glue.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

This is definitely doable and not hard to do. The thin wood makes Greenleaf houses a lot easier to bash than something heavier like an RGT (in my opinion). I bashed together two Rosedales: http://www.emilymorganti.com/blog/?page_id=10013

And am in the process of bashing together two Victoriannas: http://www.greenleafdollhouses.com/forum/index.php?app=gallery&album=7228

(I haven't updated the Victorianna gallery in a while, more recent pics are on my blog: http://www.emilymorganti.com/blog/?tag=greenleaf-victorianna)

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I love the idea.  It turns a simple house into something impressive.

I am working on a very long-term project combining two Garfields and a Beacon Hill.  I inverted one of the Garfields and removed some of the walls in the Beacon Hill.  I just did all of the necessary pieces "inside out" for the invert.  The challenge is cutting pieces to line up doorways,etc.  I have a Dremel with woodcutting head to cut the pieces because I find it easier than trying to use saws.  I just leave a little extra when I cut so that I can trim it or sand it to get a nice, straight edge.  One thing to take into consideration when removing a whole side wall is making sure the remaining structure floors are still being supported.  The thin wood is not very sturdy so it's probably a good idea to keep some of the existing exterior wall on the side being cut off or put in a pillar or some other support.

Good Luck!  I look forward to seeing the end product.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for not hijacking although I wouldn't have thought that. Now I guess I'm butting in lol! It's not that hard once you are actually into the kit itself just take notes of what you changed as you start and stop.  I have an Ashley sitting in my stockpile that I was going to make in to a schoolhouse and I have no idea what I've changed on it and the cut pieces make no sense whatsoever! Everybody else is right the wood is easier to work. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh and by the way I think your idea/mock-up is very doable. The rub I think is going to come with the roof and the second floor of the house that you're adding. Okay now I'm crawling back to my own little thread. Good luck!

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

How wonderful to see what's possible with these kits, thank you! I've looked at many galleries on here but my search was probably poorly worded. I couldn't find examples of "building it inside-out" (a good way to phrase it, Holly). I think this is such a pretty house. It'll be far down on my list, I'm afraid, but I do want to get to it. I think next after the French Quarter and the Gambrel will be my mom's childhood home. And ugh, why am I so touchy sometimes? When we get back from vacation, I've decided I'm just going to post the occasional update photos of my projects and otherwise shut my face. Not even joking about that. That oughta keep the forums uncluttered!

Thank you for the opinions, the links, the help, and everything! We're off to Santa Fe soon, see y'all in a few weeks. Right now I'm off to upload another gallery of yet ANOTHER project I came across. And probably another one no one could give a rat's patootie about! Good lord, I'm drowning in these things.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, havanaholly said:

Well I do hope you slip up from time to time to share some of those interesting historic tidbits.  Who knows who else might be inspired by them?

I love hearing the backstory ... history is one amazing backstory with so many plot lines. :D 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By SC
      Now that I've finally found the time to build my Greenleaf Westville, I can't find the instructions. Do they exist online anywhere for download? New to this community. Thank you so much for any help you can provide.
    • By TheresaW
      I was wondering if Greenleaf has a Southern Plantation kit.  I saw one on Esty but it is in Australia and they only have 1 left. I'm interested in having it be my next project as I love the look of it BUT I just started my very 1st project and I'm nowhere near ready to get another one.  Thanks 

    • By rblanda
      Hello everyone! 
      I have taken the liberty of sharing my Layered PSD Photoshop file of the Greenleaf Fairfield Dollhouse. I created this file to help my wife choose the colors that she wanted for the outside of the house.
      Photoshop File: You can download the Photoshop file at: http://www.caddisart.com/fairfield?utm_source=LinkToCAIFairfield&utm_medium=LinkToCAIFairfield&utm_campaign=LinkToCAIFairfield
      You can see the :30 video of me making this file at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xa7tgUjgUo0
      If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out and let me know or reach me on the download page. 
      PS - this page wouldn't let me upload the 157K cover photo of the project even though it says I can upload a 500K image. Something broken here. 
    • By lrsafari
      Hope I am obeying the rules.
      I am "New" here, but my eBay record is visible, and I can point to when I bought and sold high end cinema cameras and gear.
      I am happy to provide additional photos or details if requested.
      (1) Arrow Kit 750 Royal Dream  Kit in original box, Appears complete, I counted the main wood sheets. I am not sure if any shingles or other loose pieces. Box is old masking tape nightmare, but it is there.     (2) Kit: Dura Craft Heritage HR 560
      Kit in original box. Perhaps 25% of kit is missing.
      My wife and I did an inventory of the pieces. I have some of the instruction manual pages we made notes on, but need to look for a couple pages.

      (3) BUILT: Greenleaf Fairfield 8015
      Fully assembled, painted, flooring. But needs a bit of care. Some shingles are missing, Some panels sem loose. Flooring, other decorator items showing their age.
    • By WBrownIV
      Next on the list was the screen door. I wasn't going to have one but every photo I came across showed one. Okay. The challenge came to finding scale screen material. Brae had shared what she used for her screen door but I could not find it locally. I hunted everywhere. Luckily at Michaels the associate showed me Tulle. It looked good to me!  I made two frames and sandwiched the Tulle between them. Then painted aluminum. It didn't turn out half bad. 
  • Create New...