, the German Model Railway scenic accessories specialist, has released a series of dense light foam rock faces. This is Nr. 58480, Rock Formation "Stratified"
Modelers wanting an easy and good looking rock face for their layout or diorama need no longer to mix up a bunch of plaster thanks to this NOCH strata. It is cast in rigid structural foam and features great detail.
in the bag
This rock face is packaged in a polythene bag held closed by a stapled card top. Inside is a card color insert featuring a photo of a diorama incorporating the product.
The foam is very light and durable.
The strata is molded as a single piece measuring 33 x 19cm (12.9 x 7.4”), with the thickness varying to about 30mm.
Rock Formation "Stratified"
This rock face is cast with structural foam. It is very light weight and can be cut easily to conform to your desires.
The foam is a gray color. More than a foot long and seven inches high, the face of the formation is very well detailed. I think the strata and other surface detail is highly authentic.
Being foam it should take paint easily, although I do not know if solvent based paint will hurt it.
The rock feature is nicely random, with no repeated patterns, and provides a very authentic and rugged rocky surface, perhaps more like a natural cliff face.
It is made to be easily cut; another modeler, Matthew Lenton, wrote of the NOCH Rock Formation “Quarry Rock Wall”;
NOCH’s website shows the foam being cut with a small hacksaw, but I found it perfectly easy to cut using a heavy duty trimming knife, pressing the blade a little deeper on each pass until the cut was right through, if necessary turning over on to the detail side to finish off where the foam is thickest.
It was also possible to make a more delicate cut with a small modelling knife, when it was necessary, for example, to follow some of the contours of the rock on the detail side. The rest of the cut could then be completed on the reverse with the heavier knife.
Mr. Lenton demonstrated the creation of a mountain road in a mini-project utilising the product: Cliff-Side Road.
Hot glue is NOCH's recommended method of attaching the pieces. Additionally, NOCH sells separately a Rock Compound filler material to be used to fill joins between segments of their foam rock.
Layout & Diorama presence
So you've got a foot-long rock to scenic your models with - how might it look? I present the cliff behind two common scales:
1/35 (close to model railroad No.1 scale) tank, soldier and dog, and woman auxiliary
HO - 1/87 ALCo RS-3 diesel-electric locomotive
1/87 - HO Mercedes-Benz Econic with figures
is this rock for you?
Where are you modeling? The answer is "yes". strata is everywhere. Thick layers, thin layers. hard layers, crumbly layers. Gray layers, colorful layers. Bare layers, leafy layers. Below is a gallery of strata faces in the Appalachians, all along about 100 miles of the same road. If you want to see how colorful strata formations can be elsewhere, see: Cliffs Rock! Layout Scenes III
This foam strata rock face is well detailed and will fill a good portion of a layout or diorama. It is light weight and easy to cut. Recommended.