A little information about this build:

Last month I posted a set of plans for a small Post Office. This structure is one of several that I designed to be part of a small town scene I am building. While I am working on several other more involved projects I decided to take a breather and do a “quickie build” of the Post Office. This is not as detailed as many of my builds but I hope it will inspire you to build one of your own. For additional information and tips on techniques used in this build check out the Hotel Hiser or Tool Shed builds. For additional information on tools, and tips on techniques used in this build, check out the Hotel Hiser or Tool Shed builds.

You can download the plans for this build of the Post Office in printer friendly 8.5" x 14" PDF format.

Now on to the build.

Click on image
for larger size.

Day 1: I gathered the materials needed for the build. Take a few minutes to clean all the scribed wood. The front of the structure is lap siding while the other three walls are board and batten. Of course those are my recommendations you can use whatever you have left over from previous projects. Check the bill of materials included on the plan sheets for the other materials needed for this build. I ran steel wool across all the siding and followed that with a vigorous brushing to remove any of the remaining fuzz.

Once the siding had been prepared I transferred all the markups from the plan sheet to the back of the scribed siding. Remember that you’re working on the back and everything is “opposite hand”. Use a T-Square to assure all your cut lines are straight and the structure walls are square. Remember that the plan sheet shows the outer edges of the window and door castings. When marking the materials you need to move the actual window opening cut lines inward about 3 scale inches otherwise your openings will be too large.

Once all the markings were transferred I stained all the scribed siding with my India Ink and Alcohol stain. Note how the wood quickly started to curl and warp. A few days of drying under my heavy sheet of glass and most of the warping was removed.

Day 2: This is what the siding looked like after being pressed under the glass for several days. The remaining warping will be corrected by installation of large sized interior bracing.

Today I started by cutting out the window and door openings. Note, I did not cut the walls apart at this point nor did I trim the front wall to it’s exact outer dimensions. I did not want to take a chance on splitting the scribed siding while cutting the openings. I used a metal straight edge as a guide for all cuts. It is better to cut the opening a bit smaller and then use a sanding stick to enlarge it to the proper size. Once the openings were cut I glued 3/16” bracing to the back side of the walls and again clamped them under my heavy piece of glass to dry.

Day 3: It’s only 105 in the paint shop today so I took the opportunity to spray all the window and door castings their grey color. While those were drying I cut the walls apart and trimmed the front wall down to it’s proper final dimensions. I then brushed a very light coat of Floquil’s Antique White onto the front wall. The trim will all be painted Floquil’s SP Lettering Grey. At the end of the day I lightly scraped the window and door castings to represent peeling paint and then applied several coats of my India ink and Alcohol stain.

Day 4: Today I glued the corner posts to the siding and clamped them onto my glass sheet. I demonstrate this in the Tool Shed build. While that was drying I cut and glued clear plastic to the back side of the window and door castings as demonstrated in the Jolie's Bakery build. Later in the day I glued the windows and door assemblies into the walls and added a few window shades. I did a few dry run trial checks to make sure the walls all lined up properly and then as a final step for the day I glued them all together. Note I have lined up the assembled walls with the squares on the cutting mat to assure the structure is square.

Day 5: Today I cut, stained and painted the materials for the top of the front wall. Note that the top of my structure is not exactly as shown on the drawing. That decision was made because that design was too similar to the building this structure will be located next to and I did not want the two of them to look the same.

While that was all drying up I cut some plain wood material for the roof sheathing. The edges were beveled where they met at the top. I applied glue to those edges and assembled them over the structure and left them to dry while I went to work on another project. Later in the day I added interior bracing and clamped it to dry over night.

While the roof sheathing was setting up, I built the wooden foundation frame. This will support the structure as well as a wooden walk. This is not shown on the plans because some folks may wish to put their structure on concrete or directly on the dirt as was the case with many early structures. The plan under the frame was left over from another project and I used the line work to assure I built the frame square. (Hey I said this was a quickie!)

Day 6: Today I sanded the bottom of the structure. Just enough to knock off the uneven spots. I then glued this to the wooden frame and weighted it down with a can of paint thinner while the glue was drying. While that was setting up I cut the boards for the front walk and installed them onto the frame with Ambroid. I touched up the cut edges with the India Ink and Alcohol stain.

I cut some Campbell corrugated material into 3'x 6' sheets and using Barges contact cement applied them to the wooden roof sheathing. A piece of paper cut to about 1' wide was folded down the middle and then cut into 5' strips. These pieces were opened a bit then glued on top of the campbell material and function as the capping of the roof. Despite the fact that it was over 100 in the paint shop today, I roughed it and shot the roof with uneven coats of Floquil Rust followed by a few coats of Floquil Rail Rust. This produced a variance in the color.

Day 7: A few days have passed and the roof has dried so today I spent some time dry brushing it with the grey color. While that was drying, I cut and added the 6” trim boards around the edge of the roof. I then dusted it with some weathering chalks and then lightly over sprayed it with Testors Dull Coat. I added the stove chimney and a bench in front and for now this project is complete. Additional detailing such as a flag pole will be done when the building is set in it’s final location.


This build was completed in 7 work sessions spread out over a period of 15 days. Each session lasted between 1.0 and 2.0 stress free hours and most of the work was done while awaiting for assemblies needed for other projects to dry. Except for the window and door castings which I pulled from my inventory, all the materials used were left over from previous projects. A cost effective way of using up what otherwise might be cast off as waste. The window and door castings were painted at the same time I painted the castings for Jolie's Bakery.

I want to thank all of you who have visited my WEB site and checked out my build projects. I hope one or more of them has inspired you to start working on a project of your own.

The "Post Office" Build is Now Completed

Additional CWRailman Projects:

Please see:

Building Jolie's Bakery & Cafe

Building a Drovers Caboose from a LaBelle Caboose Kit

Building Campbell's Matthews Mercantile

Building Hotel Hiser

The Tool Shed Project

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For additional information about this
or other CWRailman projects drop
me a line at: CWRailman@cox.net