Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Risk Station Building

This week I spent some time putting together the Station building for The Risk Crossing Loop. This loop had a PC3 building. So instead of buying a kit, I scratch built it from sytrene. I blew up a plan to HO scale, and used some styrene sheet for the base and rear wall and 0.100" Novelty Siding (I think) for the front and sides. My collections of strip styrene got a work out for the detail items. The 0.100" Novelty comes out to near enough to 10" concrete planks. I even put in some internal walls, as well as the counter in the Station Master's Office.
As you can see these are currently without doors and windows. I still need to make the water tanks and downpipes.

Photo showing the internal walls

The completed building.
I also referred to Jim Hutchinson's excellent articles on building the PC1 and PC2 in Issues 269 and 272 of AMRM. I understand Jim has also built the PC3 but no article is yet forth coming. Jim also covers the colours to use in painting so I will hopefully purchase this this week.

I even built two platform facings out of the Novelty Siding and 2mm square styrene strip. One will of course be used for The Risk's Platform. I think I will invoke modeller's license to put the other at Rappville Loop. I have no idea what this loop had.
Don't think I will have much modelling time next week as I will be head down and other end up responding to a tender. I will have one days rest over the next two weeks, as the Tuesday Nighters are coming over this Tuesday.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Signal Boxes

Today I show off a small amount of construction in styrene that has occured over the last 2 weeks. In the week leading up to last weekends Club visit, I completed the Fairy Hill Signal Box. Yesterday I attempted to paint it by hand. It's had its first coat and looks shocking. I will hopefully fix this with a second coat. I also have to paint the roof and install some internal detail like a pseudo staff machine and a few levers in it. It could also have a diagram up on the wall if people can get low enough to see in through the front window or door to see it.

Last night and today I put together the Border Loop Signal Box. While both the Fairy Hill and Border Loop signal boxes are the same model, they have different platforms out the front. I just need to install some sliding windows, that I'm thinking may be opening, the door, the screen door, and concrete block toilet, water tanks, and the wooden platform used by passengers. I also need to install the internal detail in this signal box as well.

Both signal boxes will eventually have LED's for internal lighting. I've certainly got lots of work ahead!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Meeting Day

Well, the long awaiting meeting date came and went. I thought I'd given an overview on what occurred.

I had taken the last few days off work as I needed a break and I also needed to tidy up before the meeting. The Shed and the pergola both needed a clean. I got the track running on Thursday. There had been lots of glue from landscaping in a few area and trains were now runable from Grafton Yard to Acacia Ridge Yard and return. I was not going to use the Murwillumbah Branch. Off to school on Friday morning with the family and while there the wife got called up for tuckshop duty as they were short. So Kyle and myself swept and washed the pergold out and cleaned all the shairs, stoold and tables on Friday morning while thr boss was helping to feed the hungry hoards at school. On Saturday morning I vacuumed the shed to pick up all the Styrofoam and sawdust left over from terra forming and installing point actuators. I had an early lunch and just had to await for the arrivals.

At 1:00pm to thought noone is coming! But little by little the troops turned up. Everyone made their way down to the shed. Some had been here before, albeit 3 years and 9 months ago. Quite a lot has occurred in that time. Everyone made their way around the layout loooking at the various scenes and trying to follow the track to put things into perspective. The meeting started about 30 minutes late as most were happy to stay in the air-conditioned shed and just look around.

Eventually the reason for the gathering, our Club's formal monthly meeting got underway and the relevant business attended to. Well all except the financial business as the Treasurer was gallivanting around the Tasman on Holidays. It's easy to do this when you own a travel agency - I suppose. Once the meeting was over, we tucked into some afternoon tea put on by the better half, and we drew two raffle prizes in the Club raffle. One was a NSWGR GLV waqgon from OnTrack Models which was won by Greg. Matthew won the detail set of a couplr of scout tents etc. After the food started to dwindle, a few members started to leave to get back home - most had a 45min to 1 hour travel time back home. The rest adjourned back to the shed and a few then started to run trains, and take more photos. At least one member was having trouble with his American Steamer (with sound). It did not fit through one of the tunnels. His box cars had clearance of about 4mm under the bridge at Baker's Farm, and about 1mm under the road overbridge at Cassino's Barker Street. The loco also hit its head (funnel) inside one of the other concealed sections of track. The loco had a nice sound, but was just too big for the NSW loading gauge. Why would you model anything but NSW? While a number of people were running on the main, I decided to run the 620/720 from the dock at Cassino to Murwillumbah. My kids then wanted to help so they took turns running it in sections back to Lismore and then onto Cassino. It then did a shuttle back to Old Cassino and return to Cassino. I think everyone was impressed by the progress and had a laugh at some of the scenes.

For a few photos (I did not take any) go to Greg's Blog below:-

Today I went down to the shed and ran about a dozen trains from here to there and back again, staging a few crosses at various loops. I took the opportunity to fix up about 6 sets of low couplings and about 20 low KD trip pins. I also planted another tree and installed about 40 sets of toothbrush bristles (2 toothbrushes worth) in the relevant sidings that wagons could be left on, so they do not run away. Did I ever mention that not one bit of the layout is on the level. Everywhere has a gradient either up or down. I also found a few sets of bogies on a shelf and pressed a new 80' container wagon into service, as well as one extra scratchbuilt ballast wagon (built by Mike Boyde). I have another (MB) ballast wagon but I just need a pair of 2BP bogies first.

I also started by Christmas Modelling Competition entry. It is a small 6" x 6" diorama with by Fairy Hill Loop Signal Cabin temporarily mounted on it. The cabin just needs painting over the next 4 weeks when I decide to break out the compressor and spray gun. I won't be at the Modelling Competition but I will have an entry. On this date I will be at my daughter's Dance Concert and getting ready to to go down the coast that night or the next day. This year I might finish the 10 NOCY's that I started last year while on holidays. I just need to find the storage tray with all the half built bits on it.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

6 Days to go

It is 6 days until The Shed gets invaded by between 20 and 30 members from my Model Railway Club. They are this week getting innoculations so they can come travel from the north of Brisbane to the southside and have a rare meeting away from the Clubrooms. The guys last came over on the 12th February 2006. On that day it was hot, humid and it absolutely poured. That was in my pre-DCC days.

A photo from that very day is below. My daughter and son were clearly visible in the photo.

Since then the layout has been fitted with an NCE Powercab, then upgraded to an SB3 (which never gave me any trouble) and then to the full 5 AMP system.
This last tuesday I came home early from work before our Tuesday Nighter's Meeting and planted 42 trees on the layout. Since then I have planted about a dozen more and made up a few speed signs for the layout. Today I completed building the Fairy Hill Signal Box. It just needs windows and a door, painting and some internal detail, as well as internal lighting. I need another model of the same signal cabin for Border Loop. I don't think it will be ready by next Saturday.
Below some of the trees added
I have lots more speed signs and fence posts to create and install before the weekend. This Thursday I will give the good track a once over to ensure the layout is running properly. I might have to also check a few locos and their train consists. As it can be very embarrasing when the trains don't run, or they derail, or continually uncouple when the layout is on show.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Buy and Sell Success

This Saturday I put together a few more give way sign posts for the layout and a few to sell at today's Buy and Sell and Clubroom open day. All in it was all a great open day. Lots of sellers, lots of visitors and I even sold some stuff. The bargain of the day was three Land Rovers and yellow Mini Van for $10.

On the layout facia at Border Loop, I have a copy of a photo taken of Border Loop signal box and in the rear of the photo is a Land Rover. I was planning on building the signal box and wanting to find a Land Rover to add to the scene. Talk about planets aligning! Also as I was planning a secluded place for the naturalists to visit and have a refreshing dip in Running Creek, these people have to get there somehow, and thus will need a four wheel drive to get there.

So landrover number two is accounted for. As I was also to model a rather disreputable character with binoculars spying on the ladies from the other side of the train tracks, he will need a car as well. What better than a Yellow Mini van. Of course the trees and shrubs have to be added yet.

The cars will need to be re-painted as they are very British in appearance.

I have also added a few more items to Fairy Hill farm, like a trailer, a Caravan, a shed for the washing tubs, the tubs, and a clothes line. Still lots more to do.

I also spent time today distressing a few sleepers so I can use them as old ones removed from the railway and used by the local Farmer for his vegie garden border.

If you still wanted proof, these photos are not as good as what my daughter took last weekend.