the White Oak species was the prototype for our first ScaleTree,
the armatures and finished trees can be manipulated to resemble
many different prototypes. Your imagination is your only limit.
Remember, you bought the model and it is yours. Feel free
to bend, cut, trim, thin and change it to be what you want. Do not
be afraid to alter them.
Usage: To either replicate winter trees or dead trees, or
simply to enjoy building your own.
1) Bend limbs to desired tree shape. You may desire to trim some
limbs with wire cutters.
2) Bare armatures make good winter or dead trees.
3) Glue BranchBunches onto the armature to add mass and volume.
(see BranchBunches Intructional Sheets below)
4) Follow the Instructional Sheets for BranchBunches to add foliage.
5) Plant your ScaleTree.
Usage: For replicating a color of foliage other than our
summer green, such as fall colors, or to be able to blend your ScaleTrees
with your other scenery by using the same foliage.
1) The tree may need a bit of fluffing after being removed from
the box. This can be done with fingers pinching some of the BranchBunches
and tugging at the tree from opposite sides.
2) Spray with inexpensive hair spray and sprinkle on your foliage
of choice. For larger trees work in 6"x6" areas at a time.
3) Spray tree again with a top coat of innexpensive hair spray and
4) For a more durable foliage canopy give the tree a final coat
of a diluted white glue or matte medium (5 parts water to 1 part
adhesive with a drop of dishwashing soap per quart).
5) Plant your ScaleTree.
Usage: The RTP (Ready To Plant) summer green tree.
The tree may need a bit of fluffing after being removed from the
box. This can be done with fingers pinching some of the BranchBunches
and tugging at the tree from opposite sides.
2) Plant your ScaleTree.
The green plastic
base that comes with your ScaleTree may be suitable for simple displays,
but for more realism, you will want to try one of the following
methods to plant your ScaleTrees.
are many ways of making model scenery terrain. Four which we will
reference here include: a plywood surface, insulation foam board,
hardshell scenery which is often made of plaster over screen wire
or paper towels, fiberglass, or resin coated bubble wrap.
Surface: For planting into wood, a screw works well.
You can either use the supplied screw or you may need a longer one
depending on the thickness of the wood. Use ground cover to blend
the base of the trunk into your terrain.
Foam Board: For planting into insulation foam board or
other plastic foams, we recommend using a wooden dowel or bamboo
skewer like the ones used for making shish ke-bobs instead of a
screw. You can find them in most grocery stores in packs of 100
for a couple of dollars. For smaller trees a toothpick can work,
but for the heavier trees, the bamboo skewers have more strength
and flex. To plant a 30cm (12") tree, the bamboo skewer needs
to protrude from the tree trunk about two inches. It is good to
make the hole in the foam with an awl or ice pick before planting
Use ground cover to blend the base of the trunk into your terrain
Hardshell Scenery: For planting trees
into hardshell scenery there are several options. First the hole
must be made through the hardshell scenery. This is best done with
a drill. Small trees may work well with the supplied screw. Larger
trees will need some support underneath the scenery shell. The
provided green plastic base works well as a large washer underneath
the hardshell scenery to support the
support can also be in the form of a block made of foam
the support block beneath the scenery. A glue gun makes quick work
of adhering the support blocks to the underside of the scenery shell.
If you find it difficult to locate the holes from beneath the scenery,
shine a bright light down from above and look for the light peering
through the scenery.
Once the block
is attached and the glue is dry, wooden blocks will need to be drilled
from above and foam blocks will need to have holes made with an
awl or ice pick.
ground cover to blend the base of the trunk into your terrain
is a versatile material. We recommend reading the Instructional
Sheet so that all of the various applications of the material are
familiar. We have provided the Instructional Sheet pages in black
and white images to help in printing.
Tips & Techniques
Sparse Trees: You may want to separate
some of the branches, or thin some of the BranchBunches of a tree.
The easiest way to accomlish this is to grab the tree with both
hands, one on each side, and poke your fingers into the BranchBunches
to create holes in the leaf canopy. A more thorough and precise
method is to cut the BranchBunches (the dark grey polyester fibers)
with scissors. Try not to cut straight lines that will be noticed.
Cut any limbs you want to eliminate with wire cutters.
Trees: For a less wide tree, shorten all limbs with wire
cutters before applying BranchBunches. On trees with BranchBunches
already applied, this can be done by bending the wire limbs to sort
of an "S" shape to shorten them.
the Cuts: After trimming limbs,
you may want to dab a little acrylic paint onto the end of the remaining
stub. A paintbrush or cotton swab works well for this. A mustard
color will replicate a fresh cut, while a black or grey color will
replicate an old cut that has healed.
Color Change: It is possible to alter the color of the
foliage on our ScaleTrees Complete, however, read the following
first! Our leaves are made of Polystyrene and WILL DISSOLVE
with solvent based paints. This means DO NOT USE STANDARD SPRAY
PAINTS that are solvent based. The best ways to alter the foliage
color is: 1) you may spray the foliage with model paints
that are safe for plastic. Model paints in the spray cans are typically
designed for plastic models. Always refer to the manufacturer's
label first. 2) It is possible to use standard spray paints
as long as you apply a protective coating on the foliage first.
This protective coating can be a thick layer of innexpensive hair
spray, or thinned matte medium. After the clear coating has fully
dried, then the solvent based paints should not attack the foliage.
Always try in a test area first. When applying paint, always
use protective breathing apparatus, and only use in a well ventilated
area. A light coat of spray paint will look better than
a thick coat. Try not to over do it.
Colors: There are many colors in a fall landscape. Different
tree species change their colors at different times, and many trees
of the same species will have some difference in timing due to each
tree's particular conditions of soil, moisture, shade, temperature,
and overall health. When trees begin to change color they typically
begin at the farthest leaves from the trunk. This may be at the
top of the tree or at the tip of the longest branches. It can also
begin at the tips of the least healthiest branches.
Perspective: The process of designing a scene so that
the viewer perceives more distance than is actually there. By placing
larger items in the foreground and smaller items in the background
it appears that there is more distance between the foreground and
background. To achieve forced perspective with your ScaleTrees,
place the largest trees close to the viewer, and the smallest trees
farthest from the viewer. Large foreground trees can also help break
up a scene so that a viewer's eye can not see everything at once.
Compression: The practice of building things to scale
without having to use the exact measurements. This could be demonstrated
by building a model of a prototype building. The prototype may have
13 floors and 48 windows down the side. The model can be selectively
compressed by only having 7 floors and only 20 windows down the
side. If the architecture style is followed and the other details
of the building are included, it would be obvious that this is a
model of the protoype. For modeling scenery, you may decide to take
a long city boulevard of 24 trees and re-create it with only six
Growth: The limbs of a prototype tree will typically
only grow if located where sunlight can reach the leaves on their
tips. For instance, a forest tree will not have many lower limbs
since the forest canopy keeps the sunlight from reaching them.
the Scraps: Save all limbs you
remove from your ScaleTrees. They are perfect for sapplings, dead
trees, struggling trees, bushes, and competing trees at the forest
edge. Group together several limbs you have removed, and you can
make a new shorter tree, or a grove of smaller trees.
Shapes for Various Applications