Monday, March 26, 2012

The Grassinator

I had this on my to-do list for a long time now...

The Grassinator
Static grass is pretty darn cool, but I lacked the tool to apply static grass on the layout. I picked up a Noch static grass shaker bottle, and it kind of works. However, the grass would not really stand on ends, but rather be a jumbled mess.

Last summer I bought an electric fly swatter. These are nifty little devices that typically look like a small tennis racket. They generate a high voltage load which zaps insects when you hit them with the metal screen in the paddle. Using that, today I finally built ... The Grassinator.

Construction is extremely simple: Disassemble the fly swatter, remove paddle, cut cables to the paddle, hot glue a metal sieve in place of paddle, connect one cable to sieve, connect other cable to an alligator clamp. Done.

To apply static grass, drive a nail into the scenery, generously apply scenery glue or matte medium, add some static grass into sieve, clip alligator clamp to nail, turn on Grassinator, gently shake the Grassinator while holding it closely above the ground, and the static grass fibers will fall through the sieve. Static electricity between the wet glue and the sieve will make them stand on their ends (well, mostly, this Grasinator is not super strong).

Here's what the result looks like, with the glue still wet. I'm using a base of fine ground foam before applying the static grass to give a bit more body. 
Approach to Hochwaldtunnel with static grass hills

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