Monday, October 23, 2017

Cardboard cartons, Part 2

In the first post on this topic, I showed a way to use ordinary brown  paper bags to fold up into a representation of cardboard cartons in HO scale (see it at: ). But as intended, that post was only an introduction to this topic.
     For those interested in the background of such cartons and their foundation material, properly called “corrugated fiberboard,” since cardboard usually refers to a solid material, there is a fairly complete article on Wikipedia (here is a link to that article: ). In that article is a kind of obvious diagram of the exact kind I showed in my first post, which is how any cardboard box is designed and laid out (this is called a Regular Slotted Container or RSC):

Obviously in any scale, one needs merely to choose dimensions for this diagram, cut it out and fold up to glue.
     My own project began with closed boxes, or boxes with top flaps just partly open, as I showed in the post linked in the first paragraph, above. These boxes visibly lack what any shipping box has, namely shipping labels. There can also be additional small labels for delivery instructions or postage, along with warnings or other placard-like labels. One can look at modern boxes as a starting point for how these items look, but of course labeling has changed, not least with the central role today of bar codes. Transition-era period labels were in some way simpler, in some ways more complex.
     Here are three cartons, one with flaps open, all with various labels on them. I wanted to try a white carton, since some appliances come that way.

Two of these cartons are the same ones shown in my first post on this subject, at the link shown in the first paragraph of the present post.
     Another use for cartons is as discarded packing, where the flaps have been opened, the contents removed, and the box flattened.  To make an example, I chose something like an appliance box, six scale feet tall and three feet square in cross-section (in other words, all four panels are 3 x 6 feet). Here is the paper, marked and cut, before folding.

The pencil lines will be folded to be on the inside.
     I wanted to add a label from a classic maker of appliances. I chose General Electric, which continues to use a classic logo (images are readily found by Googling same). I just reduced one to a size that would fit on my carton.

Finally, I added a couple of labels and tags to make the appliance carton look like it had gone somewhere. Despite the small size of these items, the “busy-ness” conferred by these little bits is surprisingly effective, and takes hardly a minute to do.

     I have enjoyed the challenge of designing and making a bunch of cardboard cartons for the various loading docks on my layout. These are really quick and easy, and add something in the way of detail for your layout.
Tony Thompson

1 comment:

  1. Hi Tony
    This is by far one of my favorite posts.. I will give it a try as soon as I can find some brown paper. Just to easy.