Friday 27 July 2018

Odds and Ends

First off, I've updated the "About Me" section on the blog.  You'll find it over at the right-hand side of the page, just beneath the "Blogs I Follow" section.  And also, just for the record, it wasn't me that came up with the "TrainGuyJim"  name, which I think sounds a little dumb.  That was my computer guy, who helped me get this thing started last September.  He had to put something in there apparently, and that was what he used.

I think maybe things would have been soooooo much easier, and probably a little more precise too, if I'd known about this product last year when I was starting to work on my paved street trackage. The link below works now.

There are only 3 track switches in my street section, so it wouldn't have been much more expensive. I think my work in that area looks good and all (I do sometimes get compliments on it from my occasional visitors), but this might well have been even better.

Back in June, at the Cargill facility in Sarnia was this well-weathered CSXT covered hopper.  I was interested to see the ghosted previous lettering of the RF&P at the left-hand end.

I've seen a number of lease engines come through Sarnia recently.

I'll close this week with a total change of is the nearly new Algoma Innovator downbound at the mouth of the St.Clair River.  Delivered to Algoma just last year, this 650 foot self-unloader has it's boom uniquely mounted at the bow. This was the first time I'd seen Innovator, but hopefully not the last!

Saturday 21 July 2018

Just Upgrading a Small Patch of Scenery

I did a little bit of a scenery upgrade this week.  I had mentioned in my June 16 post that I thought the area at one end of the JSSX yard could use some trees and bushes.  It's the foreground area between the layout's edge and the front of that old warehouse. I figured some overgrowth would help to evoke the sense of abandonment of that building, so I've added a little bit of greenery, and a length of fencing as well.

Below, is the scene as it had been until now.  The JSSX frequently seems to use the track in front of the building to hold their crane and and a couple of flatcars for their maintenance department.

Here is just about exactly the same view, but with trees and bushes made from Scenic Express "Super Trees" added to the foreground, plus some scratch-built fencing made from steel wire and "tulle", which is fine fabric mesh used for bridal veils.

Saturday 14 July 2018

A New Industry for the layout

I've been wanting to add an industrial building to the layout...something that would receive covered hopper loads of plastic pellets. We have hundreds of them running around here in Sarnia every day, in and out of the local petrochem plants. I've got a few of these cars for the layout now, and really no place for them to go to. Maybe a company that takes the pellets and turns them into rolls of plastic wrap...something like that for the layout.

I've had two or three false starts trying to figure out how to use this space, but the white building to the left in these pictures is what's underway now. I'll work with this for a while and see things go.

Looks like the spur will be able to hold two 4-bay covered hoppers, maybe three at most, but I'd like to be able to spot a boxcar in there too. I've got a couple of ideas to tweak the building a bit to make it just a little more interesting,  Maybe a covered outdoor dock that would also be used to load that trailer at the right hand end. And I think those storage silos need to be closer to the covered hoppers. 

Saturday 7 July 2018

Dual Diameter Tank Car

Found this pretty well weathered whalebelly tank car temporarily spotted on the street just outside of the location of my future Midwestern Plastics plant. There must be a switcher working around here someplace, because they wouldn't just leave a tank car out in the street for very long...would they? Oh well, maybe this one's empty anyway because the hazmat placard is blank.

I'm not sure why this type of tank car has disappeared from the railroads. This one is an Atlas model, and I've got another one like it in the storage cabinet, but it's not as weathered as this. I like this one better than the other. I entered this one in a weathering contest 3 or 4 years ago.  Came in 4th out of 7 entries I think. It really should have "shelf couplers" in place of the regular KaDee's, and brake line piping below the tank would really make it look good. Maybe I'll get those couplers one day...I'm less sure about doing the piping.

I've found in the past that getting "rust" to show up the way it should on a black model freight car is not easy. The same thing can happen on brown or boxcar red cars. My solution to this takes quite a bit more time, but is worth it in the end.  All of the rusted areas that I've done on this tank car - tank, walkway, and handrails - were done first with white. Then, once that was thoroughly dried, I went over it again with burnt sienna covering all of the white, and then emphasized heavier corrosion with burnt umber.  The white layer gives the rust shades more "pop" than just burnt sienna over black.

Looks like the switcher is just coming down the street now...

Same car, back at the freight yard.