These are some of the tools you will need to manufacture your trees, pliers, side-cutters, long nose pliers, heavy duty soldering iron (70 watts or above), coil or bar solder and flux (bakers fluid)
The trees I am making are English varieties but could be based on any species in any country I use a couple of these charts which give me a skeletal structure of the tree itself so I can make the tree look as real as possible.
First I stretch all the copper wire I have so that it is straight this makes it much easier to bundle it up to create the trunk, it also strengthens the wire in the drawing (stretching) process be sure to tie the bundles firmly with scrap wire.
Once the wires have been bundled up insert a 1.6mm brad (with the end snipped off) into the end of the bundle and dip the entire end into the flux,shake the excess off
Now that you have bundled the wires tied them and inserted the brads for mounting its time to solder the trunk base together. With a nice hot soldering iron get a pool of molten solder on the end and place it under the flux coated wire bundle, the solder will capilerise (be sucked up) into the wire forming a solid mass.
Once you have finished soldering the trunk your bundle should look like this, the distance you solder up the shaft is up to you.
Place your tree into a wooden block to support it while you do the rest of your creation. at this point you can split the wires into however mant main branches you desire and solder up those branches as for as you wish, this will create a very strong resilient tree that will stand up to much wear and tear. Some of my trees are as much as 9 years old and on their third layout.
Now it is time to start splitting and shaping the smaller branches using the twisted wire method there will be more on this subject as I get the photo's together so bookmark this page for more to come
Pick out pairs of wires and twist them together to form branches starting with 8 or say 4 and breaking down to the last pair.
A small loop needs to be made at the end of each wire (branch) to allow the flock something to stick to when mounting up.
When all the branches have been completed it is time to cover the frame with a flexible covering.
Products such as "no more gaps" are very suitable I would suggest that you use one of these products that comes in a color such as light or dark brown this is to prevent a stark white line appearing in the case of cracking or splitting.
Using the silicone applicator squeeze product and cover the trunk of the tree remember you are trying to create a large tree trunk using the silicone.
Once the silicone is placed on the trunk it needs to be brushed out to give texture to the trunk
also place some of the silicone in a jar and water down, mix well until it becomes a thick paste that can be brushed onto the thinner branches to bulk them up.
The tree is now ready to recieve the flock I glue it on with good old Tarzans Grip and I use woodlands scenics for the flock.