Saturday 31 October 2020

Loading dock

 First up this week, before I get to the loading dock part, is the news that Dave, of the Consolidated Motive Power Services blog, has renamed his blog and his railroad to now be the River Basin Railroad. You'll now find the link to the new site listed in my "Blogs I Like" column over on the right-hand side of the page.  Dave's a great modeler, and chimes in here with a comment pretty regularly.

I thought I'd like to have an open-air loading dock as part of my new industrial building, so I've scratched on together from odds and ends that I had on hand.  Those items being some Evergreen styrene H-column, I-beam, a couple of unused loading docks from previous Walther kits that I used as the base, and a piece of .040 styrene sheet.

Here it is on the workbench, pre-assembly...The "concrete" pad measures 30' x 60'.

I used the back of an Xacto knife to scribe the grid marks into the styrene sheet.  The pad was sprayed with ModelFlex Concrete Gray.  Some of the squares were masked off and sprayed with light coats of Craftsmart Gray just to add a bit of variety to the colour. Once everything had dried, I coloured in the scribed cracks on the pad using a .005 diameter black pen. If you look closely, you can kind of see dark shadowy areas I sprayed to represent marks left by forklift tires that lead from the front edge of the dock to where the entrance doors to the main building will be.

Above is the nearly done loading dock, with the steel frame painted in primer red, and a few crates pallets, and barrels added.  The bottom 4 feet of that front column has been painted safety yellow so a fork lift driver is less likely to bang into it.

 Out in the real 1:1 world, d
own at the Sarnia "C-yard" 2 Sundays ago was this tagged, rusty and patched 3-bay covered hopper. The randomness of the graffiti and rust colours nearly camouflage the freight car as it's behind the tall brown grass in the foreground.This one even still has it's old ACI tag.

And phjoto taken the following day, this bulkhead flatcar of aluminum ingots was sitting in "A-yard".
This might make for an in interesting modeling project one day.  The orange coloured straps are also quite appropriate for the season.

Monday 26 October 2020

Late Posting This Week

I'm quite late posting this week, 'cuz I ran into computer trouble last Monday.  The hard drive failed on my laptop, so it's been out of service since then. My computer guy said something about the "boot config", and is rebuilding the drive.  Or at least trying to.  I didn't think I'd be posting anything at all this week.  But I'm using my adoring wife Linda's computer now, although it's kind of not the same and I haven't been able to sign in to my email yet.

Anyway, here's what I think is a real nice picture of modelers George Dutka and Don Janes on the platform at the Sarnia station last Monday, the 19th.

George arranged for us to meet up down there.  Have a look at the models these two brought along.

That's Don's RS-10 in the foreground, and George's Alco and FOS models behind.

I took a trip out to the local Lowes to get a piece of MDF to mount the structures for the bakery building kitbash on.  I bought material that's 1/4" thick this time, reasoning that it should be less flexible than the thinner product that I've used before.  This should make things just a little more secure as I move the models to and from the workbench to the layout.  I've cut a piece of the MDF to 8" wide and 48" long for this industry.

As in the past, the idea is to assemble this model as a sort of module that will be able to be easily lifted out for cleaning or upgrading or whatever, and could even be replaced with another different industry on another piece.

I wanted to try to have this industry with 2 spur tracks running along the front of it, so I'm going to try that idea out.  Here's a look at things as they currently sit, just roughed in on the layout. Next step will of course be to connect the tracks to the GTW line.

You can see the 1/4" MDF, which I think should match up in height nicely with some cork roadbed leading up to it. The silo and transfer building, an open-air loading dock area that I've scratched from materials I had on hand, and the (as yet roofless) main building.  I'll post more photos of the open dock next time.

I'm a little unsure whether I like this or not, as it looks like there might be a little too much trackage in one area.  That's the JSSX line on the left, the GTW in the middle, and then the new spur(s) on the right.  I'm going to try it out this way first though.

Saturday 17 October 2020

A New Industry for the Layout

 Got started just recently on a new industry for the layout. It's intended to go along the GTW line, to fill in an area that's been under utilized.  In fact, hardly ever seen any real use at all.

I'll be kit bashing this one from the Walther's Magic Pan Bakery kit, and it's going to take me quite some time to finish it up.  I chose this kit for a project because the main building has "concrete block" walls for the main building, rather than the typical brick walls that so many of my other structure kits seem to have.

This is the kit as pictured on the box. Inside the box, there's an office, the main plant building, four silos, and a transfer building, plus details such as stairways, a ladder, and piping to assemble, so it should be fun..

I'm intending to use most of the kit of course, but not all of it, as I can't really see a use for the office part of the structure right now. I will reconfigure everything else as best I can to fit the space that I have available.

As I have come to expect with the Walther's kits, the instructions are a bit cryptic, as the diagram for the silo assemblies are blurred together.  And the silos aren't round after they're put together either.  I ran into the same problem a couple of years ago with their silos on another model.  Those things aside, I've been enjoying putting this one together so far.

I've been painting and weathering most of the pieces before assembly, and I've changed the orientation of the building so that the stairway will be more visible.  Doing so meant making small changes to some of the piping as well.

Lots to do yet, but here are a couple of photos from the workbench of what I've managed to accomplish so far.  I think it's looking pretty good...
Hard to tell in this view, but I've modelled the top door open.  I've shortened the vertical piping by about half an inch because, as Luc pointed out to me, the pipes would have been obstructing access through the bottom doorway. That's because if following the instructions, the wall with the stairway is supposed to be facing the silos.

Top-down view above the silos.  The 4 grey sections of piping still need to be painted, and I have some spare roof details here that I can put on the top of the transfer building.

Set roughly into place on the layout, the rest of the industry will be on the left-hand side of the transfer building.

Saturday 10 October 2020

More Brownville and Ashland Diesels at the JSSX

 Six or so weeks ago (has it been that long already?) I posted photos of 4 Brownville and Ashland Railway diesels belonging to Luc Sabourin.  Well, the maintenance contract with Luc's railroad has now been extended to include these 3 locomotives as well. JSSX maintenance crew (me) will again carry out light paint touch-ups to handrails, etc., and install plug-in decoders as well.

Here are a few photos of more of the Brownville & Ashland Railway power...

The three B&A locomotives have just arrived into the JSSX yard.

Widecab #501 is a really nicely done model. Note the quad-exhaust stacks, and the anti-slip strips on the top of the short hood are a very nice touch.

B&A #801 has had it's fans removed and been converted to a slug unit.  This is a really cool idea for Luc's railway.

And B&A 281 with one fan removed.  A bit of exhaust soot has begun to accumulate around the stacks.

 Visible further down the track in the first photo is my snoot-nosed LTEX SD40 number 3415. Sean Steele painted this one for me several years ago, going by photos I had seen at  A former Union Pacific engine, I was drawn to this one by the large amount of flat black covering such a wide area of the sides  Here's a bit closer look:
Just now noticing that the horn and brake wheel have gone missing, I'll have to go looking for those.  There's always something to do...

Saturday 3 October 2020

An RS23, plus a Pair of Tangent Boxcars

On Wednesday, Brian Smith sent me this picture of the Ontario Southland's (OSR) #506 at the yard in St.Thomas, Ontario. has it listed as an RS23, built in August 1959.  I like how flat it's black paint has become.

Thanks again Brian.

And, following up a bit on the Brian's photo of the HBIX SW1200 from last week, was Dave of the Consolidated Motive Power Services blog.  Dave had the presence of mind to check into the switcher's ownership a bit more, and found out that the grey box on the side of the # 9359 is a Hotstart system.

I wasn't too clear on just what that meant, so I typed "locomotive hotstart system" into the good old google search engine, and came up with the Hotstart website, explaining just what such a system is, and how it works.

So, here's Brian's photo again, and for those interested, it's followed by the link to the Hotstart website:

and the link:

A few weeks ago, I ordered and quite quickly received 2 of the new Tangent 86 foot Greenville auto parts boxcars.  These are really nice models - really nice -, but they certainly weren't inexpensive.  $64 USD each, plus shipping, and then converted into to Canadian dollars = Yikes!  At least Canada Customs didn't charge me anything more.

I got one of the Southern boxcars and one of the Conrail models.  My other auto parts cars are all Athearn and Walthers models of course, and many of them are blue (GTW, DT&I, L&N) so I chose to get a couple of brown painted cars to try to mix things up a bit.

Here's a look at my two newest 86 footers out on the GTW line...

I haven't done any weathering on either of these boxcars yet, but I hope I'll be able to get to  some of that soon.

Conrail Quality logo at upper left

The Southern car is my favourite of the two.