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Main Street U.S.A.

Includes Main Street Buildings and Music Files


Home > Hat Shop ~ Opera House ~ Main Street Bank. Town Squre addresses 200-Mad Hatter; 203-Opera House; 205-Disney Gallery; 207-Bank > Modified Hat Shop ~ Opera House ~ Main Street Bank

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After some careful sanding, the gap area will be covered with some brick paper to completely conceal this joint.
Once the Opera House piece was completed it was installed permanently on the layout. The gap between the Main Street train station piece (to the right) and the Opera House is now filled with Bondo.
This view is intended to show the "restrooms - ATM" sign just to the left of the souvenir stand and over the left shoulder of the guest with the pink hat.
Before installing the piece permanently on the layout I took it out into the sunlight to take a couple of photos.
Here I'm testing the amber Marklin gas lamps that were installed to the sides of the Opera House entrance. The Opera House-Mad Hatter-Bank of Main Street piece is nearly ready to install on the layout and the lamps were one of the very first enhancements added. I needed to be sure they still worked!
Finally, Mary and Bert have attracted the attention of nearby guests -even the romantic couple on the bench have now noticed the presence of the famous pair. As Mary and Bert pose for a photo, a young boy's parents try to coax their slightly shy son to meet them. At this point there are 43 figures on the Opera House piece. 26 are visable here.
A decent view of the trees in front of the timber retaining wall.
Notice how the cast member doorway connects between the retaining wall and the theater terminating the pathway for guests.
The "Wizard" heads off to Fantasyland. He entered the Mad Hatter shoppe with the simple intention of replacing his baseball cap he left back at the hotel. However, once inside, the boy inside him was more persuasive with his selection than his normally stronger practical side, so, he chose a Mickey "Fantasia" wizard hat. And why not? After all, Disneyland is for the young and the young at heart.
With a small crowd of guests gathered around, Mary and Bert pose for a photo. My placement of the star couple was determined by how they would appear when viewed from the perimeter of the finished model. I wanted them to be easily visable and not hidden under a awning or obscured by the trees. Many of the views in the photographs on this website will not be possible when the model is complete, therefore, we shoot them as we progress to document details that can't be seen with these angles and extreme close-ups ever again.
Three kids -all wearing Mickey ears- wave to passing Main Street vehicles.
The wife looks a bit surprised at her husband's new Mad Hatter hat. After all their years together they're still discovering things about each other they never knew before.
All wearing their newly purchased 'ears,' a family hurries from the shoppe because Dad has spotted Mickey Mouse in front of the Disney Showcase across the street.
At this stage the arrangement of the figures is about 75% complete. When done, Mary Poppins and Bert won't look so alone but I have to work from the building facades out towards the curbing.
A young couple spots Mary Poppins and Bert. The movie, released in 1964 and 20+ years before they were born, is, nevertheless, one of their favorite Disney films. I like it too.
This is a good view showing how narrow the pathway is between the south side of the Lincoln theater and the timber retaining wall (mostly hidden by the line of tree plantings).
An overall view of the Opera House piece.
The south side wall of the Bank and Opera House is almost hidden with dense landscaping.
A close-up view of the under construction souvenir booth
At this point the landscaping around the south side is taking shape. I made the piece able to slide out for ease of work in this area because of the tight confines around the narrow walkway to the restrooms, the souvenir booth, and the RR right-of-way.
Additional globe lamps and an ATM machine on the south side of the Bank of Main Street. An ATM machine in 1910? I don't think so...
The new (future?) Fairy Godmother and her brother with the Donald Duck cap are excitedly expressing their desire to visit their favorite attractions. Of course, the two are not in agreement of which they'll ride first. With her own desire to slow the pace of the day, mom points out, "Oh, Look over there! There's Mary Poppins!"
Mary and Bert have taken up their pose and passers-by are starting to take notice.
A young man has just purchased a Goofy hat and is rejoining his friends outside. His girlfriend with the pink blouse and hands on her hips thinks he looks, well, goofy.
It's a busy day at the Mad Hatter Shoppe. There are eight guests with their newly purchased hats.
Mary Poppins and Bert will be featured on the Opera House piece so I fabricated the pair by modifying and combining several Preiser figures. Bert's cane is made from .008" brass wire.
Okay, since the Mad Hatter shoppe sells, uh, hats, I wanted to create some scenarios with the figures around the storefront. This required the modeling of some different headwear on several 'guests.' From left to right: a family (3) with Mickey ears; a man with a Goofy hat; a man with a Mad Hatter top hat; a man with a Fantasia style Mickey wizard hat; a little boy with a Mickey costume. Not shown is a boy with a Donald Duck cap and a girl with a Fairy Godmother style hat with veil/cape. Final painting has yet to be done.
The earthen berm between the RR tracks and the Opera House piece is formed from poly-styrene insulating foam.
In front of the timber retaining wall, sapplings (JTT Tree branches) have been planted between each of the wall's poles.
I added a photo-etched brass ladder to provide some extra detailing on the roof.
Between the south side of the Lincoln theater and the RR right-of-way berm there is a timber retaining wall. Unfortunately, the photo I took of its fabrication on my workbench didn't come out and, therefore, it is difficult to view here. The backing of the wall was made from .040" styrene sheet and faced with strips of bass wood. I used styrene to back the wall because I would be applying water-based landscaping materials (Sculpy Modeling Compound and matte-medium) and needed to prevent any possible warping of the wood. The poles are bass wood dowels. The completed wall was stained brown and weathered with a black India ink wash. In this photo the wall has not yet been built to its full length.
Pink and white flowers have finally bloomed in the beds.
I had an idea for some special figures to pose around the "Mad Hatter" shoppe and -since it would be a focal point of this side of Town Square- decided to detail the sign by making a hat from styrene and crafting a hoop from .010" brass wire. I drilled out the original hat with my Dremel tool using a 1/8" bit. The actual "the Mad Hatter" sign was taken from a photograph. I would add the chains which run from the facade to the roof of the awning later.
The sign is removable in case I want to update (or back-date) the advertised show.
This is the sign that is placed in front of the Opera House when the attraction is not well attended. It is fabricated from styrene and some ornate photo-etched brass trim. The poster is for the "Disneyland: The First 50 Magical Years" show and features Steve Martin and Donald Duck. This show is now soon to be replaced by a new Lincoln presentation to observe our 16th President's 200th birthday. It is scheduled to open Fall of 2009.
A woman is using one of the pay-phones located next to the cast member entrance. Her boyfriend is urging her to get off the phone so that they can go and enjoy the park.
The brick side-walk is in, the trees are planted, the flowers are planted too but have yet to bloom.
Three new trees are made from Woodland Scenics plastic tree armatures, polly fiber, and gree/grey finely ground foam from AMSI. I took the time to bend and shape the armatures to resemble those in my park photos.
Here is the printed brick-patterned sidewalk piece ready to install. It takes a little effort to cut and trim a complex pattern like this.
The Bank facade facade receives some final paint details too.
The Opera House facade receives some final paint details.
At this point the flower beds have been cleared with my Dremel tool and are ready for some new landscaping.
The photo-etched brass stairways are really nice details. If you enlarge this photo you can see that the steps have the traction holes in them!
The south east side restrooms have received additional paint and the two pay-phones have been made.The black box to the left of them contains an emergency defibrillator, so, if you need one, you know where at least one is located!
Illustrated here is the vast size of the entire Opera House block. The three "dots" along the crest of the main roof are large cast resin cyclone-type roof vents. My more recent aerial photos reveal that these are no longer present and they were most likely removed in 1965 when the theater for the Lincoln show was constructed and a full air conditioning system installed. However, I had these really nice N-scale details and just had to use them.
This is the north east corner. The stairways and railings used are photo-etched brass details.
The south east corner showing the stairway (external) that allows cast members to access the offices above the Bank Of Main Street. At this stage the drain-pipes and rain collectors have been installed. A bit of trivia here; the upper floors of the Opera House and bank (viewed from Town Square)were the only ones on Main Street built to full-size back in 1955.
The model work of the restroom area shows the detailing better after the basic tan color of the building has been applied.
I also used my airbrush to paint the vast roof a light gray tone and also applied some light weathering. The rectangular 'box' on the lower left portion of the roof is most likely the remains from a massive early air conditioning unit. If you have E-Ticket magazine #43 (fall 2005), there is a photo on page 38 that shows the unit and a freshly tarred roof.
Using an airbrush I painted the building a light tan color.
This simple box structure is on the roof of the Opera House directly behind the beautiful architectural features.
A broader view of the south east corner showing how the two story facilities were added on to the rear of the main theater building.
South east corner.
This is a view of the south side facade with doors for the restrooms (men's to the left) and the center doorway which is an emergency exit from the Opera House lobby. Curiously, in years past the women's restroom was to the left.
The four main walls are assembled.
The main structure now containing the Lincoln theater was the first building completed on the Disneyland site and was used for the lumber and wood mill for the Park's constuction. My aerial photos show two large warehouse doors on the north side during the Park's early years. However, I doubt these remain today but, since I have no current photos, I went with the original design. The roof pitch is 10 degrees incase you're wondering.
The styrene stip foundation alongside the south wall will house restrooms which are located here.
The two side walls have been cut from .060" styrene sheet. Doors will be installed before permanent assembly.
I've cut and used super glue to attach a piece of 3/4" thick Super-Board to the Opera House. I've used strips of styrene to outline and form the foundation for the Lincoln theater addition.
With the top of the roof removed the architectural 'ears' and ornate sculpture stand-out much better.
Employing the bandsaw and a Dremel tool I removed a chunk of the roof top. This opens and improves the appearance of the ornate architectural features when viewed from the front.
A few "Great Moments With Mr. Bandsaw" and the rear of the Opera House piece is gone.
In order to construct the very large structure which houses the "Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln" show I needed to remove the rear of the Opera House piece with my bandsaw.
The pencil line accross the roofs indicates a bit of surgery is about to take place.
Another shot of the new columns and marquee. Optical distortion from the camera lens in this extreme close-up makes the columns appear to be leaning. Also, the entire facade has been re-painted to reflect the current scheme.
The new columns with the operating gas lamps have been installed!
I used my photograph trick again to replace the "Opera House" sign.
This is a shot showing the new marquee sign. The original was too long to allow room for the new lights so I removed it with a Dremel tool and cut-off wheel. I replaced the graphics using my photograph trick described in the City Hall gates project. Our marquee now indicates that the 50th Anniversary show, "Disneyland: The First 50 Magical Years," is showing.
I didn't like the original color of the bricks on our Main Street Bank facade -the tone was too 'peachy' to my eye. I mixed up a shade of brownish-red acryllic hobby paint and re-colored them. I also re-painted the roof trim to an ivory hue.
This shot shows one of the new column bases (to the right) installed. Holes were drilled to accept the new column bases and to allow the wires from the lamps to pass through to the underside of our platform.
This a photo of the new assembled column incorporating the base and Marklin lamp. Notice the very thin wire running through the hexogonal column and extending from the base. Only the column's base will be glued to the sidewalk of the Opera House piece. This way, should the Marklin lamps ever burn out, they can be replaced by simply pulling them up.
This is a photo of one of the new column bases. It is made from 3/32" brass hexogonal tubing with .010" styrene overlays to bring it up to the same size as the originals. Additionally, I used a piece of 1/8" diameter styrene tubing to make the new cap for the support base. After super gluing the tubing to the base, I chucked the brass end into my Dremel. In essence, I had converted my Dremel into a lathe and used a #11 hobby knife to dress (shape) the tubing to form the cap.
Here I'm using a Dremel tool with a cut-off wheel to notch the awning to accept the new gas lamps. The original two 'outside' (left/right) awning support columns have been removed. I will make new ones incorporating the operating Marklin gas lamps. Note too, the original color of the brick work on our Main Street Bank facade (peach color on the right). I'll change this later.
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