Working Preparations in the Process of Architectural Model Making

/Working Preparations in the Process of Architectural Model Making

The conceptual scale models are simultaneously created by the first drawings. They do not require any special training, including it could hinder more than just the development of the project. An auxiliary table adjacent to the drawing, some basic tools (see the previous chapter) and a background made up of materials such as paper, cardboard paper, corrugated cardboard, cork, a few small pieces of wood, objects found, the rest of the previous models, methacrylate etc., and the most important adhesives, are more than enough. It is different from working and execution models.

Relationships of the most important concepts

Before we start working, we need to set our goals and needs to accomplish the completion of the specific models. The list of these concepts will help us not forget these important issues:

  1. The type of model – What type of model is and what is the degree of completion? (see the typology set out in Chapter 2)
  2. The mission of the model – What forms does it reproduce?; What needs are to be analysed and discovered?; What aspects of the project and what information should be sent?; Can the idea of ​​the project be better explained by different drawings or perspectives, or just by a model?; Is there a relationship between the layout and layout set?; Is it necessary to reproduce only the edifice or together with the surrounding environment and elements characteristic of the environment ?; Are only the outer or together with the inner shapes to be reproduced ?; Should it be dismantled to appreciate the inner spaces clearly? (Must all the floors or roof and facades be visible?)
  3. The receiver – Who gets the model? Whom should we explain the ideas of the project to?; Should the author (student, architect) be the one who explains the model or must it convey information on its own?
  4. Phases of work – Is it a conceptual, working or execution layout? Are some elements of the model to be used to build the execution layout (base, field, and existing edifice)?
  5. Level – At what level will the project be reproduced?; Which area of ​​the environment do we detail?
  6. Material, tools, machinery and own knowledge – What material should we use? Do they meet the project requirements?; What effect do we want the materials to produce?; Which combination of materials is the most appropriate?; What type of texture (bright, matte, reflective) and what colour will the surfaces of the materials have?; Can we get all these materials in a timely manner?; Can we handle them with the tools and the space we have? Do we have enough tools, machinery, knowledge and expertise to apply the necessary techniques?
  7. Transport and equipment – How will the model be packaged and transported?; What is the maximum size?; Would it be possible to dismantle the layout?
  8. Documentation – Do we have all the necessary documentation to build the model (topographic plans, edifice sections)?; Are the plans at the right level?; Are the drawings for building made in such a way that the model can be started immediately?; Are the most important features of the project reproduced through our materials, tools, knowledge and experience so far?; Are the drawings defining the most important data of the model?; Do we have enough copies of the plans to use as a template?; Do we have a list of all the elements to be built? (For example, all edifices to be reproduced in an urban design); What parts of wood do we need and in what order should we cut to build different parts of the model?; What is the optimal sequence for building special elements and what extra materials do we need? (For example: first use the circular saw to cut, then perforate, grind, further clean the surface, apply paint and finally mount and incorporate the ground)
  9. The final control – Before starting to work, you must check the availability of the tools, machines, materials and check the construction order.

If tools or working conditions do not allow us to build the whole or part of the model, then we should leave work on the hand of a professional carpenter. In this case, we need to explain to the responsible person our ideas about how we want to show the model which he has to do correctly and, in advance,  he must have a great deal of detail. It would be convenient for working documents for the builder to be ready immediately to start construction and contain the necessary information! We have to study and analyse the entire set of plans of a project so that later to build a 1: 500 scale model, except that it takes a long time, can lead to misinterpretations and misunderstandings. However, the information should not be about the subject: the builder must have an idea of the project globally.


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