40' Containers for 'S' (1/64) scale

I noticed a similar topic back in 2013, and decided to let you know what I've done these past few weeks.  I had some container graphics I gleaned from the WEB over the years and modified them from 40'l x 8'w x 8'h to a taller version 40'l x 8'w x 9'-6"h.  I also converted some 20' long containers to 40' by simply extending the ends.  I found some scrap styrofoam that was exactly 1-1/2" thick - which equals 8' wide in 'S'.  I had also borrowed a foam cutter from my son which allowed me to cut blocks of styrofoam 7.5"l x 1.5"w x 1.78"h.  (a 2x4 could also be used since they're 1.5" thick, but would be much heavier.  You could rout a lot of the center out with a router, leaving some cross-struts along the bottom.)  The styrofoam I used had a clear plastic cover which showed through the paper printed container graphics.  I solved this problem by putting a thin coat of spackling compound over the clear plastic, as well as other areas of the foam that weren't perfectly flat.  I then sanded the excess off.  The result was a nearly perfect block of spackling coated styrofoam suitable to use as the base for the applied paper container graphics.

I developed the following container graphics:


CMACGM 40’ 1/64 (S)

EVERGREEN 40’ 1/64 (S)

GENSTAR 40’ 1/64 (S)

Hamburg Sud 40’ 1/64 (S) - faded

Hamburg Sud 40’ 1/64 (S)

HANJIN 40’ 1/64 (S)

Hapag-Lloyd 40’ 1/64 (S)

HYUNDAI 40’ 1/64 (S)

IFF 40’ 1/64 (S)

IGS-HANSA 40’ 1/64 (S)

K-Line 40’ 1/64 (S)

MAERSK 40’ 1/64 (S)

MAERSK SEALAND + P&O Nedlloyd 2-20' 1/64 (S)


MAERSK SEALAND 2-20' 1/64 (S)

MSC 40’ 1/64 (S)

NYK 2x20' 1/64 (S)

OOCL 40’ 1/64 (S)

P&O Nedlloyd 40’ 1/64 (S)

P&O Nedlloyd 2-20' 1/64 (S)

UNIGLORY 40’ 1/64 (S)

I've got a couple Des Plaines Hobbies 'S Scale America' Husky Stack well cars that look GREAT.  I'm also trying to use some American Models Intermodal Spine Cars, but they need a little work ad they're not set up for containers, only semi trailers.  (Another one of those 'round-tuit' future projects.)  In any case, I'm attaching some photos.  If you're interested in getting some of the '.pdf' graphics files I've made, just let me know.

Best regards, Randy GriggsDSC02439DSC02438DSC02437DSC02436DSC02435DSC02434DSC02433DSC02432


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Original Post

WOW! Those look terrific! So what I'm seeing is an actual block of styrofoam covered in inkjet printed paper? That's neat. It looks very realistic and actually gives off a 3-D vibe:


Kinda reminds me of lithographed cars where you "see" more than what's actually there.

Good job!



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Mark, Thanks!  Yes, they're just styrofoam blocks (leveled out with spackling compound) covered with - MOSTLY - laser-jet printed paper.  I did the first four, 2-China Shipping, and 2-Hamburg SUD using my own inkjet printer.  I decided it cost too much color ink, and had the rest printed at Staples using their color laser-jet printer for about $0.56 a sheet (+tax).  So, probably, all told, each container cost less than $1 even counting the Elmer's glue & spackling compound.  That's pretty cheap when you consider you might need dozens of them in a model intermodal yard or train.  The laser-jet prints were much sharper and the color was much deeper than the inkjet.  The difference was obvious between the Hamburg SUD containers printed on the inkjet vs. the laser-jet.  (I should have moved the UP passenger train so the difference between the Hamburg SUD container on the intermodal train and the 2 in the stack was more obvious.)  I'm attaching additional photos showing this difference.  The Hamburg SUD on the right was printed with my inkjet, the Hamburg SUD on the left was printed with Staples' laser-jet.DSC02444DSC02440DSC02441

Regards, Randy Griggs


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