Loading a tobacco kiln is a lot of work. A conveyor makes it a lot easier – and since they’re a neat detail I thought I’d add one to my kiln scene. Fortunately, I had a package of HO scale portable coal conveyors handy – they’re part 933-3520 in the Walthers Cornerstone series. I cannibalized one of these to create a kiln conveyor – a process that primarily involved building a new, wider conveyor belt.
I cut a piece of .040″ styrene sheet for the belt, rounding the ends to suggest that the conveyor is curling around a roller. I then added lengths of 0.040″ half-round strip at regular intervals to represent the ridges that help the belt do its job. I cut apart the frame that supports the wheels and used some 0.060″ styrene angle to stretch it to match the new, wider conveyor.
My prototype photo showed a sheet across the bottom of the conveyor – presumably where the sticks are laid, one at a time, to convey them into the belly of the kiln. I added this sheet using some thin sheet wood and more styrene angle.
Finally, I painted the conveyor then created a stick of tobacco and glued it to the belt.
The conveyor required me to add the styrene walls to the bottom of the model what will represent the concrete foundation. I’ll write more about that – plus some modifications to the kiln to accommodate the conveyor – in a future post. Stay tuned!