Monday, December 20, 2021

Engine house tracks pt2

I had a pretty productive weekend.
I worked on the engine facility on and off, 10 min here and 20 minutes there. I got to where I feel this is a presentable stopping point.  I still have a few minor things I want to do yet and I have on order a couple of detail parts then I'll put a wrap on it. Hopefully they'll be here next weekend?

The first thing I did was to adjust the wheel stops. I had a some folks mention that they were too close to the end of the rails and they felt that the couplers would hit the building? They didn't but they were a little close so I moved them. Luckily they popped right. Did I ever tell you I hate CA glue? This time I used a small drop of 5min epoxy.

The next thing was the track next to the fuel storage tanks. My original plan was to have them filled by a truck, but after thinking about it, there was no reason not to shove a tank car in there and have it fill the tanks, mainly due because of the size of the storage tanks. But this would mean I'd have to extend the track and I already had the groundcover down. siiigggh....

"Well here's goes nothing!"
I measured how much track I needed and then grabbed my Exacto with a #17 blade and started in. I was quite pleased as it popped right up once I got a small area open. Then I just worked a little at a time until I had enough room for the track to sit in place.

I glued it in place and tried to line it up the best I could. Once it was dry I started to replace the ballast and ground cover and last night I was able to blend it in with the rest of the grimey and oily track. Then I added another coat of thinned gloss Mod Podge and walked away.

With a tank car sitting here, I can still squeeze three GP's on the fueling track.

This morning I added some ties in front of the fueling pad and added some weeds around them. I added more ground foam base on the parking lot near the tracks leading into the facility, and along the edge of the parking lot near the mainline as well as around the building.

When the parts show up, I'll get the rest of the static grass added to the foam base and start adding some of the weed tufts.  Here's a couple of overview shots of the scene as I left it tonight. I still need to weather the sand tower...

Oh yeah, I also glued down the yard lead to the right of the building, this will be for the industrial tracks once I get them installed.

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Engine house tracks

I've been working on the tracks around the facility lately, mainly weathering them.

I used some black and brown Bragdon powders to make the tracks look dirty and oily.  In a few spots I wanted to make it look wet from fuel spills.  I achieved this by using a small dollop of  glossy Mod Podge and thinned it to a wash and then applied it to the areas where spills would likely be.  It soaked in and when dried it looked wet.  I also did this around some of the piping and hoses.

The other thing I added were some wheel stops.  These were purchased off of Etsy from a guy who makes some N scale 3D printed items.  These are pretty nice little wheel stops.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Dead Weeds Update

I sat down tonight to start removing the dead weeds and to my surprise, they popped right off.  I rolled the parchment paper back and used a tweezers to grab an edge and off they came.  I'm not sure if using Elmer's glue over Mod Podge was the trick, but whatever it was it worked.

After staring at them for about 30 minutes while I peeled them, I actually kind of like the darker color.  This color is Mud, the lighter is Dirt.  But I think both will work just fine, once they get installed they should blend right in.

The yellow grass worked and looked much better than the light green did which is what I suspected.  As I said before, these are made from a mix (2:1 ratio) of 4mm & 7mm grass.  I did this because I thought a dead weed might stand out a little better next to the 2mm & 4mm green that I used elsewhere, we'll see what it looks like after I get a few installed. 

As I was placing them in the tote, it looked like I had a bunch of Sandburs!  

The only issue I saw was some of them had flakes of paint that stuck to them, but they come off with a quick flick of a fingernail.

Overall I think these will work just fine.



Sunday, December 5, 2021

Dead weeds

After getting the foundation for the engine facility pretty much finished up I went back to making some weeds, this time I wanted some dead and brown weeds to spark a little contrast with the grass that I covered the yard with.

I looked online for for brown static grass and only found a few places that had it, none of which really had what I thought looked like dead weeds.  On top of that, what I did find one came from the UK and wanted $15 to ship a couple of bags to this side of the pond, the other was stateside, but the shipping was still about the same.

Not long ago I remembered watching a video where a guy was placing some grass tufts and as he peeled them off the paper it looked like he had sprayed them with brown paint?  Sure enough, I went back and watched his video again and he used Vallejo.  I didn't have any of that but I did have some TruColor browns.

The other thing I didn't have was some 4mm & 7mm Yellow Straw grass until it arrived in the mailbox today.  So I figured I'd try painting some Light Green grass that I had on hand until the Yellow Straw arrived.

I started by applying dots of Elmer's glue full strength to some parchment paper.  Then grabbed the three brown TCP colors I had on hand.

The Paint bottles line up with the painted weed tufts.  The Dirt and Mud are Matte and the Lt Brown Stucco is Gloss, so I shot a coat of Dull Coat over them all.

Later after the my Yellow grass arrived I quickly made four sets of tufts and set them aside to dry. This time I only used the Mud & Dirt and sprayed two sheets each.


I think these will look good and will definitely be cheaper to produce, I just hope I can get them to release of the parchment paper.  The first time I tried making tufts, they stuck so tight that it ripped the paper.  At that time I used Mod Podge Flat, so I'm hoping Elmer's isn't as tenacious?