03 May, 2017

Quick Update on Motive Power & Sound

SO Excited! Got two locos sent out for upgrades, thanks to my Honey's "bday present". Got a jewel of a bride, with Daylene.

First loco is an old P2K GP38-2 (L&N/FL #6022) that Traintek LLC put a 1st Gen Soundtraxx decoder in (sounds great, but never ran quite well) seven years ago, so back in Gary Paulino's capable hands for at least a Keep Alive.

The 2nd is a "new", never out of the box (still has horn hooks on it!) Atlas C30-7 (Conrail #6601) I've had in the closet for a while, off to Mike Rose for a full monty install (weight milling, LEDs, etc) of the ESU Loksound decoder kind.

I also have a U36C that will have to wait for a bit ($), so for the future layout (in Utah), I can have two "through locos" and stick an RF&P Geep on front, as the prototype did, when running the 113 miles from Potomac Yard to Acca Yard. Our eventual move West will not change my love for VA railroads, as well as the Grey & Blue.

17 January, 2017

Kruiswyk Machinery (formerly Canavan's Machine Tool) - A Fos Scale Limited Structure Kit Build

So, I was able to get this kit done, in a little under three weeks, after working on it a few hours a night, 2-3 nights a week.  It is certainly not a difficult kit, if you've done at least one or two  'craftsman style' kits and fun to build.  For this one, I decided it wouldn't look too old or worn, such as when you add "nail holes" and busted clapboard, peeling paint, etc.  I assembled the kit almost completely, before priming and painting a simple white.
Using the Microscale Jig to square it up.

After priming, I decided it would be a perfect fit in between the tracks, as opposed to the kitbash of Walthers plastic stuff from the Lumber Mill. Ramps to doorways may need some tweaking, due to track proximity, but I think it will work.

The 'original' machinery shop is that brown building, in the foreground.

Here's some assembly pixes.

Roofing and building were weathered with the PanPastel materials only.

And, here it is on the layout, as complete as it will get until I start scenicking and detailing.

Looking at them now, I may try to play around with positioning the buildings, to try and make it look the best, and allow for operations, without knocking into the structures or scenery.  More to come, as usual!

23 December, 2016

Happy Holidays & A Quick Posting of My Doings

I want to take this opportunity to wish you all the very best for this coming Holiday Season.  Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or another holiday of your faith, may it be full of fun memories with family and friends.  Be well and Peace be with you and yours, now and in the New Year!

Apartment living has gotten me down, of late. Been pining for my model railroading in a larger space than we have now.  While my layout in our old home was relatively small, it was palatial compared to the Bowman Center.  Here's a Flashback Friday of my Doswell Junction (never completed, but a fun build):

I've been feeling a little blah for weathering at present - I've done several freight cars over the past few months. I recently assembled another Intermountain kit of a PS-2 Covered Hopper, in NW scheme, based on a proto photo I found on www.RRPictureArchives.net.  I'm going to let it set for a bit, and see if my mojo comes back to play with it.

In any case, on a rare trip to our garage/storage dungeon (located elsewhere in our luxury slum), I came across my box of Craftsman Structure kits. I drooled over "the Red Box" I have (SRMW #360, H.W. Meyers & son), but definitely no place for it, even as a diorama. So, I decided to tinker with a Fos Scale Limited craftsman structure kit, to see if I can 'get outta dis Funk'. 

Let's see what happens...  It's been quite a while since I did one of these.

30 October, 2016

Weathering Shots - Intermountain two-bay covered hopper.

I'm kinda sorry that I haven't posted in quite a while. Blogging is definitely not my strong suit. I've done some weathering of freight cars over the past 10 months, on and off.  It comes like most things in my life... in fits! LOL!  Here's one of my faves. An ex-MKT two-bay covered hopper for cement service, now under Helm Leasing Co. ownership.

I took this one, on a July '16 railfan trip while babysitting my granddaughter. Nap time for her, trains for me!
Really caught my eye, even though it's 20+ years too new for my layout.

Here's one from Railroad Picture Archives . Shows the extensive corrosion
 on the roof and the replaced walkways.
This car really caught my eye (because it's not very plain jane).  So, I had to see if I could find one in HO.  An older Intermountain kit, painted in this scheme was my starting point.

Assembled, Gloss coated and decaling has started.
The car is older, so some of the parts were small, very flexible, and didn't quite fit 100% together. Not my best assembly of a kit. However, once I weather, I think a lot of the excess glue AND mistakes will be covered, or barely noticeable.  Definitely passes the 8' test.
Lettering complete, and now going to add some Graff!

Microscale decals for graf - I'm not brave enough for hand-drawing the actual ones on the prototype.
Thought I did this great, until a friend showed me I should've had the open bottoms of the lettering down at the bottom edge of the car.  Dang it.
Using Oil paints as a base, I stippled in some Pan Pastels.  I love the results!

Other side.  
Top view. 

I called this one complete before the 2016 MARPM and displayed it there.  Many liked it, although it could've been better. But, as Allen McLelland says, "Good Enough" is the standard you should go for and it's my railroad... hope you like it, cuz I surely do!

19 January, 2016

Transition to CSXT - Continued

The MTH Gon is complete and back in revenue service.  Here's my pictoral chain of events.
Before much of anything, I decided to add some BBs, to increase the weight; used Elmer's glue.

Fellow modeler & friend Ralph DeBlasi has recommended using some of the AK Interactive paints, so I gave a few a try.
Love the results, after using a trio of Crusted Rust, Bleeding Rust, Track Wash, and Grime.

Really think these paints are making it look used and crusty, circa the transition from SBD to CSX (about 1989-1990).

The interior was done the same way, but I added another color, Oily grime.

After the paints dried, I added a little too much Bragdon's Ash Wx Powders, but quickly removed some off, using water & a q-tip.

Here she is, at the Dominion Scrap & Salvage, getting put to good use.
My only problem with this car is the fact that I deformed the bay a little too much, so the Motrak Models scrap load no longer fits.  I think I'll modify the load to fit, as I really like how the car came out.

14 January, 2016

From 'Foobie' to CSX Gon - A quick change

Once again, I am doing a lousy job on consistently posting to the blog.  So, I'll binge a bit this weekend.  Here's one quick post, on a couple of night project.

A while back, I bought a couple of MTH Mill Gondolas at a train show. Turns out the WM one was pretty close to prototype, but the N&W was not, so I decided to use a little MicroSol to remove the lettering and make it a CSX gon (based on a proto photo by John Rogers) for my switching layout. Here's a few shots of my progress.

MTH 'as delivered' 70-ton mill gondola.  A good looking paint scheme, but not right for this type (as far as I could find)
Proto photo by Joe Rogers, circa 2006; I think the lettering is normally used on patching locos and are certainly larger than 8" tall. This is an ex-SBD Gon.

Using Microscale MicroSol soaked paper towel, I was able to remove the white lettering, logo, etc.

Took some Gouache (white base, a bit of black and a drop of tan craft paint) and water, I tried to fade.
I also used my wife's embossing/heat gun to warm up the sides, so I can add a few dents & bulges.
I did two coats of Plaid clear spray gloss lacquer.

Using the above proto photo, I tried to letter it for CSX, but I didn't have exact same ones.  This will do,
until I get them, and then do a patch job. Kinda looks like a rush relettering, and will fit for my early 90's era.
Tonite, hopefully two coats of dullcoat and then grunge it up over the weekend!