Friday, July 12, 2019

Big Boy! July 12th, 2019

Was lucky enough to catch the Big Boy today!
We found a spot just East of North Bend, NE  at milepost 48.25

What treat it was to see such an iconic locomotive, something that I never thought I'd ever see running under its own power in my lifetime.

What a treat...

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Super Trees

This afternoon I caught the SB Winnfield local picking up a few bad orders that train #35 left on a siding in Haskell, AR. the previous night.

 I finally got a chance to play around with some SuperTrees.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Static at Gavilon

After getting the grout for the parking lot and ground foam base down at  Gavilon I applied a layer of static grass.  Things are really greening up there now, which shouldn't surprise me as it's a fertilizer distributor? 

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Gavilon's greening up

I would hope so since they ARE a fertilizer distributor.  

Several years ago I used some grout for the parking lot at Heavy Metal and was pleased at how it looked, much finer than any commercial made gravel.

When I was planning Gavilon I wanted to use grout again, but this time I thought I'd use more of a white color to represent limestone.  I found a good color from Blowes called Frost.  It was almost white and figured I could tone it down with a grayish wash.

Today I got the itch and was able to get the grout down at Gavilon.  It was white that's for sure but was able to tone it down using some gray and brown craft paint that I mixed into a small spritz bottle so I could spray it on rather than brush it on as I was afraid it might not go down even and I'd see the overlay.

Once it dried for a few hours I started adding ground foam for the first layer of weeds.

You can see that it's just a bit Off-White and if you look close you can see where the glue leached into the grout when I glued the weeds in place.  In time I think I'm going to try to play with some weathering powders to highlight different areas where the limestone has sunk into the mud?

Sunday, June 9, 2019

This time I caught the NB Winnfield local #774 at Haskell

After catching the SB #773 at Haskell the other day I caught up with the NB #774 at the same location the following day, but this time it was working at Gavilon Fertilizer and swapping cars on the W&OV interchange track.

Two days, two trains, a good catch in my books!

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

I caught the SB Winnfield local at Haskell, AR

The morning forecast told of more stormy weather headed my way around noonish, so I grabbed my gear and jumped in the truck hoping I could catch up with #773 before the floods came again.

Shortly after grabbing my morning foamer snacks at the local Quicky Mart, I heard'em calling out track warrants for work in Haskell!  Just as I got set up I seen a headlight peeking around the curve as they reached the North end of Haskell siding, perfect timing.  

Todays power consisted of three old Warhorses: two GP18's - #1351 & #1346 and F7 #120.

I took a bit of a break from scenery and got the tracks cleaned up and decided to run a few trains to see how well things worked.  While I was at it I figured it would be a good time to shoot a video and play around with the new editing software I picked up a while back.  

After getting a new computer built last December and installing Win10 I realized much to my dismay that MS had decided not to include their Movie Maker program with this version of Windows.  So I did a little research and picked up the Power Director 17 software.   So far it works better than Movie Maker.


Sunday, May 26, 2019

Attempting to weather Gavilon's buildings

I've weathered enough freight cars and locomotives that I'm not too afraid to grab a new car or loco and go to town on it with several types of weathering mediums, but buildings?  But this has me a little worried.

Going on a few suggestions I started using some India Ink washes and oil washes and was not happy with the results, so I kept looking around.  One day I stumbled onto a few videos of guys using Watercolor Pencils to apply some light weathering and got intrigued, so I picked up a cheaper set from Amazon and finally got the nerve up to try it.

I first tried a few different shades of Browns and Oranges to see which looked better and settled on one Orange one Brown and Black.  The idea behind these are that they work just like the watercolor paints, but they are in solid form inside of a pencil.  You just draw some lines and patches on the areas you want weathered and then using nothing but a soft brush dampen with water you start brushing over the lines and patches until they dissolve to leave a stained discoloration.  If you have too much on then you can keep applying the water until they're gone.

In some cases I used just the brown and orange then the brush with water and worked them out till they looked like a rust stain.  In other areas where dirt would accumulate I started with the black and brown.  Still in other areas I used all three colors. What I am showing below is far from finished, but I think I'm on the right track for a lightly weathered look.

Bare in mind on some of the roof stacks you can still see some lines where I drew the colors on but didn't get them completely dissolved.  In some cases this would be OK for scratches.

The elevators were first sprayed with a base of Red Oxide then sprayed again with a lighter coat of Old Silver so the Red Oxide could show through.
I then applied just a thin line of all three colors under each one of the seams on the elevator shaft and worked the pigment in a downward direction.

My goal here is to not go crazy on weathering but to get a general dirty used appearance.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Gavilon's main building

Progress has been a bit slow lately, but with tax season behind me hopefully I can find a little more time?

I have the main building assembled and painted and most of the stock detail parts applied but still need to get the rest of the downspouts put on.  I also want to add few things like a sign, some light fixtures and an A/C unit for the main office, then some Gold Metal Model safety ladders and walkways on the four white tanks and a few other minor details.  And yes, I need to trim the downspout on the small elevator yet.

Next step is to attempt to weather the building.  I'm still noodling how's the best way to approach this, but I have some ideas so we'll see.

For the pictures, it's just a rough guess on the placement, but it's close.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

"Static, on the radio..."

I'm sure the good folks in Haskell wasn't happy with me the other day when I applied the static grass?  I'm betting the airwaves were not getting through very well?

After getting the ground foam down for the scenery base, I pulled out the static grass and applicator and got after it.  I apologize for the crappy cell phone pics, I'm starting to think it's time to look into some photo stacking software?   

It's come a long way from this in just a few months.

With this step completed, I plan to go back to work on the buildings at Gavilon Fertilizer and get them painted and wrapped up.  Then I can finish the ground work for the parking lot.  Then I'll be to start adding trees and other details. 


Sunday, March 3, 2019

Things are greening up at Haskell

Since that damned Groundhog lied about an early Spring and the temps dropped along with some snow, I found some time this weekend to get more of the scenery base down.

Most of what I did this time was primarily to use the Scenic Express Turf blend to cover the majority of the section and added small amounts of Woodland Scenics fine Earth along the ballast shoulder.  I also added more crushed leaves where I plan to have groupings of trees.  I also sprinkled on some varying colors, but this was mostly around the tracks and the ballast.

I still want to come back and get some color between the sidings to help define the ballast edges. 

Hopefully in this shot you can see how I've tried to make the elevator tracks look ratty.

I think the next step will be to dig out and apply some static grasses?  After that.....maybe some trees and bushes...

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Ground foam at Haskell

I've only had a small amount of time to work on the layout thanks to taxes and the weather, but I did manage to get some base scenery applied using some of the ground foam I recently acquired.

First I cleared off the area again.

Using Mod Podge thinned with water 50/50, I applied it with a 1" foam brush within a few inches of the ballast, as well as getting some on the lower portions of the ballast shoulder and then used a kitchen sieve and sprinkled a good layer of the Earth blend over the glued areas.

Once it was dry I vacuumed the excess up and reclaimed it to use later.

I repeated this process for the Turf blend.  I made sure the glue mixture partially overlapped the Earth blend and proceeded to cover the rest of the areas as well.  After letting it dry as before I again used the vacuum to reclaim the excess Turf blend.

Next I came back with an assorted variety of colors and coarser ground foam to give a little more flavor and texture. I sprinkled this with my fingers and tried to blend the two previous layers of Turf and Earth.   This was then sprayed with 70% alcohol to wet it before applying more Mod Podge thinned to a 3:1 ratio. 

The dark ground cover is dried, crushed leaves, I plan to plant a batch of trees in this location.  I've read and seen how others have used this method to represent the ground cover under the trees.  

I'm far from done with this scene, once I get all of this base down I'll come back with some static grass to add some depth and color, then some trees.  

It feels good to get some scenery down again.