Thursday, 26 May 2011

From the beginning- Making and Painting The Flats


In the room which our set would be built in we wanted to be able to see how much space our it would take up, measuring it out and then using masking tape we taped along the floor to create the outline of the set. This was the outline which both rooms would fit into.

This allowed the group to get the realisation and overall insight into the true size the set would become. From doing this some changes were made such as the drawing room becoming larger, the study becoming smaller and for the study to become rectangular instead of square.

The group also went through a health and saftey workshop before the flats were allowed to be made. We were reminded of the general health and saftey such as the need for eye protection goggles, face masks, sensible clothing and steel capped boots. The group then also got to experience pre-drilling holes into the timber, using the chop saw, how to mitre corners correctly, taught how to use a Square correctly and what the router is used for and how to use it.


The majority of flats are made at the basic size of 8ft x 4ft as it is the most common size for the ply skins to come in. Ply Skins are the sheets of Ply which are placed ontop of the timber frames.

Before we began to make the flats we had to take into consideration how many flats were needed and if any had to be made smaller that 8ft x 4ft. For the windows, doors, walls by the doors and the archive that was situated in the study the flats had to be changed. Henry helped the group to work out the correct measurements and which flats would make it easier if changed for when it came to putting the flats together later one.

By drawing out the floor plan of the rooms once more i then split the walls into the correct amount of flats. This was for my own peace of mind, to avoid confusion and helped me to understand where the changes to an individual flats were needed. Through drawing this out also allowed me to look back as a reminder is needs be during the making of the flats.


Each majority of the flats were made up of the timber frames were made up of 7 individual peices of timber. With 5 peices of timber being the same size, the the 3 in the centre and the two and the top and bottom of the frame which lay horizontally whilst the two longer peices of timber on each side vertically. With the flats having to be 4ft wide, the width of the vertically peices of timber had to be deducted from the peices which would lay horizontally so when put together the frame would not be to big for the ply skins.

With the timber cut down to size we predrilled 5 holes up each of the longer peices of timber, each with a 2ft gap inbetween. Drilling the top and bottom of the frame to the sides and then the three centre peices before attatching the longer peice of timber on the other side.


Once the frames were complete on one side of the frame we applyed a coat of PVA glue and then put the sheet of ply on top. Making sure one end of the flat was completely flush, with members of the group holding down the ply as flat as possible using a nail gun we nailed the ply skin to the timber frame. Using a metre ruler we drew lines every 2ft and nailed across the lines to ensure the three peices of timber which were braced within the flat were also being secured to the ply skin to complete the flat.

Pictures: Making sure ply is flush and nailing the ply skin.

Making the flats was relatively simple however very repetitive and time consuming which was not helped with the unwanted trouble of the nail gun repeatedly breaking throughout the making.


Once all flats were made we began to paint doing the wood grain effect but only coming up 3ft up from the bottom of each flat. This was for what the panneling would later be placed on top of. We wanted a the flat to be mahogany, using Red Oxide as the base coat but whilst still wet we added the colour Burnt Umber to then go over in the top with a dry brush using a small amount of Black paint.

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