Saturday 13 June 2020

Covered Hopper Loading Conveyor Part 2

Before I get to the progress on the conveyor, I was pretty happy on Monday to have been invited to meet up with George Dutka, creator of the White River Division blog, and Don Janes down at the Sarnia train station.  Not much was going on down there trainwise at the time, but it sure was great to see and hang out with the two of them for a while.  We did our best to maintain that 6 foot separation.

One manifest train did head westbound through the tunnel while we were there, and another got close to us as it was doubling over into the freight yard.

Here's a few photos from our time at the station:
Don is getting ready to photograph CN's SD70 5712 as it approaches.  I don;t know how or why I didn't get a picture of George.  He posted a few other photos on his blog on Tuesday.  Here's the link to that post:

5712 has pulled up as far as the station platform as it doubles it's train back into "A" yard.

 I liked this well-weathered covered hopper that rolled past us.

ExactRail makes a very nice model of this type of combination-door boxcar.  I looked up this exact car number on, where it is noted that this boxcar was built in Trenton Nova Scotia in 1993.

Now, on to the conveyor...I didn't get as far along on my conveyor machine I featured last week as I had intended, but at least a little bit more has been accomplished.  Here it is mocked up on the workbench.
I've cut a base of MDF to shape to fit the spot that this little "industry" is going to be placed on the layout. The base is painted grey and then concrete gray sprayed sprayed over that.  I've marked out sections on it to represent separate concrete slabs, and then painted and glued down a styrene channel for the conveyor "wheels" to track in.

 This closer view allows the small grey electrical boxes I've added to be seen a bit more clearly. I think I'll leave the one support column in primer, just to add a little bit of interest.

From the other side, we can see the electrical cable, boxes, and the belt motor at the top of the conveyor.  I'll also be trying to make up another drive motor (with a safety guard) to place on the bottom frame.

That rusty covered hopper in the photos above is one of a few that I patched and re-lettered for the JSSX a few years ago.  I had stopped running them on the layout, as there was really no industrial destination into which they could be spotted.  I've even sold off 3 or 4 JSSX lettered covered hoppers for that reason.  This conveyor will allow me to a): add another small industry to the JSSX, and b): run a couple of my remaining JSSX covered hoppers.

Here's a somewhat better look at JSSX 14253:


  1. For a small detail, that conveyor has a lot of flavor. Nice work!

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