Having now assembled a reasonable number of open 4 wheeled wagons, Its time to think about loads for them. I can either sit down and start making detailed models of whatever the wagon was carrying, or I can cheat and toss in a jumble of shapes and then put a tarpaulin over the top. This isn't as easy as it sounds, as in real life tarpaulins are quite heavy articles and tend to 'drape' over the load concealed underneath. 120 times smaller, and whatever you are using has this annoying tendency to do anything but. Anyway, the first step for this is to make some loads. As the wagons were resin on Peco underframes, I glued a layer of number 4 lead shot to the base first for ballast.
Then off into the bits boxes to come up with some shapes. I used a bit of foam board for the box like shapes, and some wooden beads for the more rounded ones. The paper is from a writing pad, and I'm guessing about 1/2 the weight of the normal printer paper. However, you will need to use something that does not come apart when its wet. The paper was cut to approximately the correct dimensions (I think 32 by 52mm is close to scale for la's and 32 by 62mm for Lc's). The next step is to get it wet and drape it over the load. Its not going to sit too well at this point, so just get it centered. Then get some PVA/water mix (about 50:50) and paint it with a brush over the paper. This should get it to sit down a bit more over the load, and the glue will add a bit of stickyness so that it will hold to the outline of the top of the wagon. The corners tend to be folded from the side to the ends on the prototype. After its all dried paint the tarpaulin a dark grey and add some tiedown ropes ( I haven't got to that bit yet).
(I painted them black without reference to photographs, but have since found that they should be a dark grey, which I couldn't find in the local hobby shop, so will have to go to Resene's instead)