Sunday, March 27, 2016

Adding More Detail

This week was a very short one for work related purposes.  I was sick Monday and had Thursday off.  I was able to spend a small amount of each of these days in the shed.  With Friday a Public Holiday guess where I was?  Also Saturday I spent a small amount of time in the shed in the morning.  Saturday night I decided to spend some time building a signature scenic item for Cassino, that being the walkway at Barker Street on the south side of the station.  I also spent some time in the shed today.  I also spent some time in the house building some fence posts and railing for a fence I'm building at Lismore. The main purpose of all these visits was doing lots of odd jobs at various locations around the layout to continually enhance its scenery appeal.
Basically I did lots of painting white plaster.  These included Kyogle, Lismore, Cassino and a few small areas that needed some touch-ups before I spread some dirts and scatters around and do my base scenery coats for the layouts. 
The front area of Kyogle Loop was painted.
The roadway from Murwillumbah now comse all the way to Lismore.  The balsa road was stained and the scenery around the road painted.  The give way signs also installed at the road crossing.

The area on the northern approach to Cassino was finally painted.

I also worked on the rail overbridge at Kyogle that take the train over the Summerland Way and the road overbridge towards Murwillumbah.
The Summerland Way was stained, the scenery painted a base coat and the bridge abutments were glued in.  The concrete rail carrying bridge was installed.  Still more work to do on the right hand end.

Some of the balsa piers holding up the bridge farther to the right (carrying the north coast line across the Upper Richmond River were also plastered over in the hope of making them look more like concrete. 

I also Installed a level crossing on Murwillumbah, did some scenery around Lismore and tidied up Fairy Lane. 
The roadway here crosses the line at the northern end of the platform at Murwillumbah.  It provide access to the Cement Silo and the motor rail loading facility.  This road even had a nice camber on it.

Fairy Lane had everyone stood back up.   The fence around the property to the right has started to be glued in place.

I installed the concrete apron for the Park Road Sidings.  I also gave the Park Road Goods Shed another spray of paint to catch the areas I previously missed.
The cement apron has been given a base concrete colour.  It just needs some other colours added to make it old and decrepit now.  The goods shed needs its galvanised iron skin and roof installed as well.

I also placed the two halves of the goods shed that I cut into two pieces the other week onto the layout.
The Murwillumbah Banana Shed has been installed.  I think another shed or two will also go in this location.
The Old Cassino goods shed has also been installed.  A larger goods platform is required here as well.

Today I also successfully installed the walkway at Barker Street, and started on the fence around the goods yard at Lismore.
The walkway provides a way across the railway line for locals.

Lots of fencing is still required in this location along with a few houses for the locals.
The beginnings of the fence around the Goods Yard at Lismore.

Tomorrow I have a Operating Session and hopefully I will have a full crew.  I will attempt to take a few photos for next week's blog.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Date Has Been Set and Time is Running Out

So with Cricket season now officially over, I have a few weeks break before Soccer kicks off – so to speak.  With this as an incentive, I have nominated next Monday as an Operating Session Day on Cassino.  I have been promising one for two months.  Well it is now scheduled and the first round of invitations sent out.
This morning I did a bit of a clean up of North Coast Control’s desk, as this has collected a bit of junk since the last Operating Session, as I have dabbled with a number of things.  I have put a few things away and I think all the trains are currently in good operating order.  While sitting at the NCC's desk and watching the Formula 1 Grand Prix on the TV in between tasks today, I realised that a few of the magnets on the NCC's train board were not in their correct position.  So I spent some time positioning these in readiness for next Monday’s session.  Today I also realised that I had some wagons sitting in Cassino Yard that should have been around at the Cassino Meatworks.  So I also positioned them ready for next week.
I spent some time this arvo mixing up a few batches of plaster and deposited a couple of these around the Lismore Oil Siding near the road that leads into this location.  I also tried to again glue down the road, which leads from the Oil Siding towards Lismore Station.  I tried last week to glue this road down, but it did not take.  Who knows, over the long weekend next week, I may actually paint the baseboard around this area and also stain my balsawood roads.

The Shell oil train is locked away in the Lismore Shell Siding.  The road that leads passed the Industry head towards Lismore on the right.  Eventually a fence will be installed around the industry.

While I had the plaster out, I decided to install the walls of a road underpass at Kyogle.  I plastered over the foam at this location and also installed a cement path for pedestrians next to the roadway.  Again the road will be ‘bitumened’ next week before the Operating Session.

The Summarland Way in the road heading under the North Coast Mainline as the road and railway head into Kyogle.

This shot shows the first upgrade of the area with plaster added.  The road eventually runs around to the right behind the railway line and on the right is the bridge over the Upper Richmond River.  This river also needs to have some time spent on it to get formed.
Tuesday quite a few guys from our Tuesday Nighters Group went to a local Buy and Sell and then we all popped over to Peter’s place.  He is one of the closest to the sale so it was pretty natural to go that way.  I did not buy anything at the Sale as there was not much that suited.  When we got to Peter’s we saw the work that he and his work crew had done to a new HOn3.5 layout that will be displayed at this year’s Brisbane Model Railway Exhibition.  This is an excellent layout.  They had fitted some Wuiske/Haskell backscenes and they look a million bucks.  Particularly on one module of the layout that contains a stock race and the fantastic scratch built metal fencing around the stock yards in low relief.  It is just exceptional!  This presentation inspired me and I plan to do something similar to my Nammoona Ballast Siding scene.  I will install a sort of backscene from the Wuiske/Haskell range and I may try and add some photos from the actual prototype location into the scene as well.  I will also add some 3D to the area by having stock loading races, fencing and ballast heaps blend into the very narrow space between the tracks and the backdrop - all in about 30 - 60mm.  So I will be on the lookout for the correct backscenes at this year’s May Show for some gear.

I see that the list of topics for this year's Modelling the Railways of NSW is out.  I plan to try and convince the boss that I need to attend and see if she will pick up the tab for travel and accommodation.  Who knows your luck in the big city - also there are two huge lotto draws this week that might help pay for attendance costs.  I can but dream.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Divide and Conquer

Today I went down to the Shed after lunch.  No sooner did I go down there and it rained cats and dogs.  I had to shut the door to keep the rain out.  That made the shed very steamy even with the fan running.  My main job for the day was to simulate the running of No.11 Down Pickup Goods.  Well this trains does not do any pickups but five separate set outs.  The reason for running this train and two others, the No.14 Up Container and NL3 Down Gold Coast Motorail was to allow myself to take lots of photos that will be used for an upcoming presentation on Operations on Cassino.  Train No.11 was going to be the star of the presentation.
So I had to set up these three trains, then run No.11 to completion, which included crossing No. 14 and NL3 at Old Cassino.  Once No.11 had arrived at its destination, I then had to move No.11 back to where it is in the currently suspended timetable at about 9:40am during the day.  I also had to backtrack No.14 and NL3 to the same point in time for when I can find some time to schedule the next Operating Session.
The other activity I did following this very rare run on the layout, was to do some work on a cardboard goods shed.  This very nicely constructed goods shed, that I purchased for $14 at a local Buy and Sell, sits on a wooden platform and has lots of wooden stumps underneath.  It is pretty Good, and my plan was to use it to save me from making two low relief sheds for the layout.  Well I took the dremel to it and split it right down the middle to make two half goods sheds.  I used a razor saw to cut through the platform.  The results were pretty good.  The shed will now be restored (next weekend maybe) with some detail added and then the roof’s central capping replaced.  The two halves will then be installed at two separate locations on the layout.  One half will be in low relief as the goods shed on the Goods Shed Road at Old Cassino.  The other half will end up forming the low relief shed in the Banana Siding at Murwillumbah.  I’m also thinking of adding a second open shed at Murwillumbah that the siding will run through.
I had planned on doing some more spray painting of my Park Road Goods Shed but it was just too wet to consider doing any painting.  I will also have to install a base concrete floor through the whole Park Road Sidings area.  I think I have a large sheet of 2mm styrene that I will be used for this purpose.  Once cut to size, it will be painted a concrete colour and glued in place.  Given that this area is so high off the ground on my top level of the layout (being about 5’ 6” off the ground), not many visitors will be able to see this area and take in its proposed detail.  But I also plan on doing a small amount of scenicing and include some grass and the old gateman’s hut at this location.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Back Doing Some Scenery

So yesterday I didn’t do much in the shed but I mixed up a new batch of watered down Aquadhere and then spread a bit of it around in three crossing loops to stick down some thin cork.  The cork is used between the tracks.  being a different level it gives the impression of less ballast between the tracks.  My aim is get some more ballast (a few kg more), and spread it in Glenapp Loop, The Risk Loop and Cassino Meatworks Siding.  I will also spread some in Kyogle Stock Siding and all around Old Cassino Yard.
Looking south through Glenapp Loop.  The signal box in the distance.

Today I decided to do a bit of scenery around the bridge at the bottom of the Cougal Spiral.  I spread some rocks at the bottom of the creek, and built up some sleeper walls around the bridge so that the ballast could be laid right up to the bridge.  This area had been previously ballasted and I left the last inch of track unballasted as I did not know what to do in the transition to the bridge.  So today it got completed.  I also spread some coloured dirts around to cover the paint on the sides of the creek embankments. 
Some sleeper retaining walls holding back the ballast.  Some rock added to the bottom of the creek.

The bridge with ballast right up to the retaining walls.

I then moved to Kyogle where the Summerland Way go underneath the north coast line.  I painted up the pre-stressed concrete bridge that I had made years ago and temporarily fitted it.  I will make some concrete sloped bases next week.
The roadway installed through the bridge.  A pathway will be installed next week after my next batch of plaster is made.

I also mixed up quite a few batches of plaster and installed the base scenery contours around the road that leads down from the Murwillumbah headshunt and goes past the Lismore Shell Oil Siding.  I installed the road in this location and spread some more plaster around the area that leads towards Lismore station.
My stained balsa road can be seen.  This will need colouring and greening up before I fence around the oil siding complex.

Just around the corner is the road towards Lismore.

I also did a bit of cutting of the roadway that will be installed near the old trestle road over rail bridge between Lismore and Murwillumbah. 
Again plaster either side of the raised road will be required to complete the area.