Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Reveal

On Monday I twisted up 10 small gum trees, and finished twisting up 4 weeping willows from some of my left over wire offcuts.  I also installed the seven trees that I foliaged the day before as in last week's blog.  Later in the day I went back down to the shed and spread some scatter around the northern bank of the Richmond River bridge.  I then spread around 65 of my Hornby Skale Scenics trees around in that section on the Northern side of the Richmond River Bridge. 
I also painted up about 20 cows and bulls.  I also painted the trunks of another five wire twist trees that I had previously ‘no-more-gapped’.  I have at the moment about 26 trees that I need to no more gap.  I still have about ten other trees of various types and sizes that still need adding foliage to.
Tuesday had a trip to my mate David’s place for Tuesday Nighters.  I spent some time playing on his NCE mini panel that controls the southern end of his yard.  We identified a couple of points not working properly and tasks were allocated to David to fix up.  We also identified a couple of points in the Upper Hammersmith location that were also not working properly.  We even had trains running on his layout.  One loco on each track circulating around and around.  I expect Shelton to post some pictures as he took about 300.  We had a very constructive night.
On Wednesday night I went down to the shed and did a bit of pottering around.  I noticed the cows that I painted on Monday were looking a nice shade of brown.  I was checking out where I was going to install a few new sets of points in the Acacia Ridge Yard.  I thought I really needed a RH curve point or two so I could install some track work. 
On Friday afternoon, I found one RH curve point in Grafton Yard in a section of track I do not yet use so I stole that along with one that I found in my broken track pile that I repaired quite some time ago.  With these two RH points and a couple of LH curve points that I obtained from Shelton on Tuesday night,I went about ripping up quite a bit of track in Acacia Ridge Yard.  At the end of the existing cross overs tracks half way down the sidings that allow a train to go from track 3 to track 2 and from track 2 to track 1 while entering the yard, I have now installed some new crossovers that go back from track 1 to track 2 and then from track 2 to track 3.  I also replaced the dual gauge point that I had made to split the standard gauge track from the narrow gauge track in Acacia Ridge yard.  This was replaced with a purchased one from Tillig that I had had sitting around for quite some time.
This shot shows the narrow gauge line in the bottom foreground and the track from the standard gauge joining it in the middle left at the Tillig LH dual gauge point.  I have now actually laid a third rail from the dual gauge point for about a metre along the narrow gauge track so I can actually store a standard gauge loco here.  In the middle of the picture is the crossover from track 2 to track 3.

Looking back the other way, you can see the crossover from track 1 to track 2.  In the foreground is the set of points to go from track 1 to the Tillig dual gauge point (out of picture) up to Clapham Yard.
Saturday was spent at the Train Club.  While there I heard some disturbing news about what I would call a corrupt administration offering us a new three year lease for $1 per year with some very bad consequences.  Don’t think so sunshine!  Anyway that is for another forum.
Today in between a few games of soccer with the son in the back yard, I planted the 65 trees that I placed out on Monday.  I then added foliage to another 8 Woodland Scenics trees and two more of my wire twist trees.  I also added about a dozen small twigs (with no foliage) in various places in the areas I'm currently working on. All these were then planted along with another 70 or so trees from my Skale Scenics packs.  This last lot of trees were in a new area that I have opened up to more scenicing.  I then decided to install the few jumpers around the new Peco points I installed on Friday, and then the track in the passing loops seems to be back to normal.  I did test drive (actually pushed) some wagons rakes through the points this morning and finally run a loco through this afternoon to test the electrical wiring.  All seems OK.  I will take a few more trains on a few test drive to ensure that there are no kinks in the track before opening this up for full service.
I also have a plan to splice in the last set of points into Loco Pilly (maybe next weekend).  This point also came from those I obtained from Shelton on Tuesday Night.  This point needs to be connected up to the last free slot in a DS64 point controller and tested and that should be the last set of points to be installed on the layout, except to replace the one I stole out of Grafton Yard.  I will also have to start clearing the single ended sidings in Grafton Yard, so that they are ready for my XPT set when it arrives from Auscision Models. 
So here is a pictorial summary of what has been happening at Cassino.  Firstly the area around the Bonalbo Ballast Siding.
Here is the location of the points into Bonabo Ballast Siding.  Some trees have sprung up on the southern back of the Richmond River and beside the railway line.  There are also a few within the siding fence line.

An overview shot of the southern bank of the Richmond River and the area looking south.
Now looking to the northern bank of the Richmond River.
Overview shot of the northern bank of the Richmond River.

Looking north, along the train line, as the line heads towards Cassino.  As you can see no ballast at this location as yet.  Maybe before the next running session.

A small marsh area will be installed next to the railway line here.  I just have to find some water to put in here.  I'm sure I have some water like substances in the garage.  I will do a test first.

There is over 70 trees in this area already on the northern bank of the Richmond River on the approach to Cassino station.
Here are some photos covering the new area that I planted some trees in today.
A ground level shot of the new work area.  Again no ballast as yet.

Moving further south we see the track through here.

This is the first area of baseboard that I put a basic green cover over.  I thought I might add a few more trees to this area as well.  I will add some detail in this area before the guys come over for a look.
Lastly I have two shots for the area around the Running Creek tunnels.  I have removed a tree or two and started work on an area where there will be a small smouldering log/tree stump following a lightening strike that has left a small area of forest singed.
A view of one of the Running Creek tunnel portals (looking south) with quite a few trees in the scene, even some without leaves that have died back.

The area where the lightening strike occurred.  This started a small fire.  I have not yet installed my electronic flickering fire device.  It has three LED's in it.  I will run optical fibre from the LED's to a tree trunk to simular the fire.
I keep getting asked when the next running session will be on Cassino.  I think everything is basically set to have one, except for a slight bit of tidying up and a run over the whole track to ensure it is clean.  In the next few weeks I will put out the feelers to see who is available when and we will try and schedule the next session.

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