Saturday 30 December 2017

Layout Extension #003

The first picture today is of the first styrene inserts I made for one of the Peco track switches.  These inserts are cut from .020 styrene. I actually erred by making this more complicated than I should have, as I cut them as 6 pieces. Later though, I taped adjoining pieces together, to use them as templates and cut new pieces so that there are only 3 inserts per switch. In the areas where the switch points are, I tried to slip .010 styrene underneath the points to hide the ties from view, but the .010 wouldn't fit. If I find some .005 thickness, I'll try that.

The switch inserts after they've been painted and installed.  Both of these switches are code 83 Peco. The expansion gaps in the concrete are drawn in with a black ink .010 tip artist pen.  The cracks in the concrete are drawn in with a black ink .005 pen. I ran several different engines and freight cars through the switches in both directons, trimming and filing the inserts until the equipment ran through the switches with no problems.  The styrene pieces are all press-fitted, no gluing at all.

The last of the switches that I have to do is this one. It's Atlas Code 83 the other two are Peco.  I've had a much more difficult time with the inserts for this one. The styrene piece that fits in between the points keeps buckling upward, and is causing detrailments. I've re-cut it twice, and each time the problem persists.  I think I'm going to stop with the "concrete" for a while, until I can get a left hand Peco switch to try here instead.  I can start to put in some ground cover in the meantime.

Wednesday 27 December 2017

Weathering Wednesday #008

I did the weathering on this Scoular (SCOX) covered hopper some time ago, but photo-credit here as well as ownership of the car itself goes to Brian Smith.  It's pictured here spotted at the mill on Brian's layout. I like this picture because it shows the silvery colour on the air line glad hand and the rust treatment given to the wheels, something that I often seem to notice is overlooked on many weathered model freight cars.

 Thanks for the photo Brian!

Saturday 23 December 2017

Layout Extension (002)

Just a couple of photos today from the layout extension project that I've been working on. The intent is to have the 2 tracks down the middle inset into a pavement/concrete street. I haven't really done this before, so I'll be learning as I go.  The spurs on either side will be ballasted with gravel...I think...

In the foreground, to fill in between the rails I've used drywall patching spackling made by DAP. When it was dry the next day, I brush painted it with grey acrylic paint, and scored in the expansion gaps with the back of an Exacto knife. Following that, I brushed on a dark Vallejo wash to highlight the gaps.  Down the tracks beyond the crossover switches, you can see the spackling before it's been painted.

The space between the two tracks is filled in with .040 styrene salvaged from a previous failed project. I cut and filed the styrene to as exact a width as I could, so that it's just a pressed fit. The styrene sits on top of the molded spike heads, and just nicely comes up to the top of the code 83 rail.

Sunday 17 December 2017

Layout Extension (001)

The general idea for this layout extension has been in my mind seemingly forever, to add just a bit more industrial switching. Over time, I dreamed up a couple of track plan ideas and there have been numerous false starts and delays for one reason or another. There's not a lot of real-estate for this, as the space available is 2 feet wide by 7 feet long, and basically only one way in for the railroad to get there.

I laid out the track in this arrangement back in the summer, and left it pretty much as track only while I switched cars in and out of imaginary industries to see how the arrangement worked out. I've decided that this area will be served by the Grand Trunk, as that will give the GT a bit more to do other than just interchanging freight cars with the JSSX.

I've dropped in a couple of buildings now, so here's a couple of views of the way things are at the moment.

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Weathering Wednesday #007

In this past Saturday's post I included an in-progress picture taken by George Dutka of my latest weathering project.  Here, weathering complete, is my 86 foot, 8 door GT boxcar.  Most modellers that know me know that these 8-door cars are my favourites.  It's just too bad that my layout isn't big enough to hold more of them.  I usually only have about 3 or maybe 4 of them out at one time.

First 2 pictures are taken on the workbench, with a similar car that I weathered a long time ago in the background, Also, note that on top of the other model, there are two photographs that I referenced throughout the process. I used one for each side of my car.  I'm pretty happy with the way this one turned out, although I think maybe I went just a little bit too heavy with some of the rust toward the right hand end of the car.  I took a best guess on the appearance of the roof.

I tried to simulate the darkened doors by masking them off and then spraying roof brown through the airbrush, followed by sprays of weathered black.

The other side, of course. I chose to not copy the black and white patched reporting marks from my 2nd reference photo.  I figure that I can always simply change that later if I decide to go ahead with it.

Out on the layout

The two boxcars together on their way to the auto parts plant.

I have at least two more 86 foot boxcars in my cupboard awaiting their turn for weathering, although they are the 4-door type.

Saturday 9 December 2017

The Railway had Visitors

Back on November 29th, George Dutka and Peter Mumby visited with me and took in the sights around the JSSX.  Their visit was pre-arranged, and I kind of figured they'd bring cameras and maybe take a couple of pictures while they were here. But truthfully, I was a little bit intimidated when I saw them unloading camera bags and tripods from George's car.  I quite enjoyed seeing which things caught their interest around the layout. A couple of super nice guys and terrific modelers, these fellows are welcome back here anytime.

George was kind enough to send me a bunch of the photos they took, so here are a few of them:

First up, is the 3 of us.  That's me on the left, Peter in the middle, and George on the right.

JSSX 508 is just getting back to the yard with a short train of autoparts boxcars.  That "star" feature shining from the lights on my GT SD38 sure is a nice camera effect.  And that cab just will not sit down properly ever since I had the ditch lights were added.

The track in front of the abandoned freight warehouse at the other end of the layout looks like it has become a good place for JSSX to store the crane and flatcar.

SWeep 7104 sits at the side of the JSSX engine shed.  This locomotive doesn't actually run on the layout, as it's DC and the layout is set up with DCC.  I bashed the model several years ago from a couple of Athearn locos, and I like to at least set it out on the layout from time to time. I took a real nice photo of 7104 beside the Sarnia roundhouse.  If I ever figure out how to get my scanner to actually work, I'll share the picture on here.

An abandoned quonset hut.

I didn't realize George was actually taking this picture of an in-progress weathering project that was sitting on my workbench when he and Peter visited.  There's the prototype photo in the background, sitting on top of the other boxcar.  Weathering is now complete on this 86 foot boxcar. I'll try to feature it soon on a Weathering Wednesday.

Wednesday 6 December 2017

Weathering Wednesday #006

Just a single shot today of this boxcar (Athearn), weathered lightly by first flattening down the red with a spray of Terra Cotta acrylic.  Then some grey patches to simulate over-painting of graffiti, and a little bit of dark rust in a few places.  The roof rust is done with burnt sienna and burnt umber.  And dullcote all over .

The building in the warehouse background has been sold and removed from the layout.

Sunday 3 December 2017

JSSX Covered Hoppers

It had occurred to me quite some time back that it might be time for me to take my Red Wing Milling company model off the layout as I had grown tired of it, and replace it sometime with something else. When the chance came up to sell the building to friend my Brian, away it went.  However, doing so also meant that, temporarily at least, my small fleet of covered grain hoppers really had no purpose on the layout. Maybe they would have to be either put away or sold off as well. 

I've weathered and patched four of the covered hoppers to show ownership by my JSSX shortline. Before removing or selling them though, I thought I should at least take a few pictures of them.

Here, in the foreground of the first photo are those four JSSX hoppers strung together, and being pulled around to the company yard by SW1200 1317.