Most of our models are made from timbers and plastics. The base will be constructed from timber, and contours will usually be built up using layers of cork. The timbers we usually use are birch plywood, which is available in a range of thicknesses, starting at 0.4mm, and lime wood, which has a tight grain and is light in colour. We don’t use balsa - although you may think of this as a model making material, we prefer harder woods for accuracy and finish.
We use modelboard as a block material, which sands very smooth and takes paint well. And we use styrene and acrylic sheet for cladding and detail.
The biggest model we’ve made was the Lloyd’s Register Technology Tree - a whopping 3.5m tall! But most are much smaller, anything from around A3 size to A0 are common. Models can be made to any dimensions, however; while you might be used to seeing your site on A1, it might make sense for the model base to be square, or even an asymmetric shape. We’re happy to discuss the best way to frame your site.
Most of our models take three or more weeks to complete. The most complex models we’ve done have taken two or three months. When we issue a quote, we include a timescale, and if you have a deadline, we will make sure to deliver the model in time.
Finch & Fouracre are keen to come up with solutions for any budget, but it should be known that hand crafted models take time. As such, very few of our models have come in at under £1000, and most are upwards of £3000 (plus VAT). If you have a limited or strict budget, please let us know, and we will come up with the best solution for your funds.
A perspex cover for a model is recommended for a model which will be on public display, and depending on the size of the model, cost a further £300 - £600 (+ VAT).
Size isn’t everything! The cost of a model depends on the level of detail, the complexity of the design, as well as the overall size of the model. That’s why it’s important when requesting a quote to consider these options.
Email us! If you have all the information ready, send what you can by email and we can put a quote together. Alternatively, feel free to phone for a chat about what you’re looking for and we can take it from there. Ready more about commissioning a model here.
Ideally, you will provide a set of drawings in PDF format of the site and buildings you want modelled. The more information you can provide, the better we can do our job. We can work from other formats, and digital models, such as SketchUp, are really useful too. Drawings can also be provided on paper.
We prefer drawings provided as PDFs at the scale the model is to be built at. Drawings on paper are fine too! In addition, things like SketchUp models can be really handy.
We make models using many different scales. The most common are the standard architectural scales (eg. 1:100, 1:200, 1:500), though we have used more unusual scales when called for (1:22.5, 1:150) - when the size of the model dictates what scale it should be. If you’re not sure what scale you need, have a think about what overall size you’d like your model to be, and we can take it from there.
Digital fabrication technologies are amazing and improving all the time. However, they are no substitute for hand-crafted work! We use laser cutting fairly often, as this can be used to cut or etch flat surfaces, usually in timber or plastic. This is something that can be adhered to parts of the model and finished by hand. We can use 3D printing where appropriate, though it requires a lot of work in producing the file for printing, and the finish of the printed part is quite rough. It can be useful in producing organic forms to be finished by hand.
Yes. Most of our models are delivered by Franki in person, in a van (or sometimes in a taxi!). If you are further afield, we can arrange for a dedicated, insured delivery.
We are happy to supply a Perspex canopy with the model. We commission these from a specialist plastics fabricator, and take 2-3 weeks to turn around.
Most of our clients are architects and in the construction industry, but we also do a lot of work for exhibit, such as museums, visitor centres and trade fairs. We have also done work for private clients, who are architectural enthusiasts.
Some of our favourite projects have been taking an idea and developing a model from a brief. This is more involved, as it requires developing and drawing up a model before building it, but the results are unique and often the most creative of our models.
Of course! Finch & Fouracre have worked with clients throughout the UK and overseas. We can communicate using email and phone, and we will keep you updated on progress with photos as the model is built. Delivery will usually be a dedicated van, either by Franki in person or using specialist art transport.
Visits to the studio are by appointment. Whether you have a model in progress, or would just like to meet Franki in person, we’d be happy to have you. Please just get in touch! If you have a model underway, it is not necessary for you to see it in person, but sometimes it can be helpful to clarify details and see progress.
Finch & Fouracre is just Franki Finch, with the help of freelancers and experts when required. If you’re interested in freelancing, please send a portfolio of work to email@example.com and we can keep you on file.