Saturday, 15 October 2016

Starting to build some structures and lay down the scenery

I am always amazed how quickly time goes by when trying to maintain a regular blog! It is now nearly three months since I said anything about the Sunset and North Eastern so here goes.

The track is down and wired up. I dropped the idea of the LED displays in the end because I don't have easy access to the underneath of the railroad now that it is all one big long board. It can be lifted but it is awkward so now that the wiring is done and working, I will leave it as it is.

A reminder: The baseboard is made from 5mm art foam board. The track is all Peco code 83 and has mostly #6 electrofrog points which are all powered by Cobalt Digital point motors. The whole thing is controlled by an NCE Powercab unit. There is a powered USB cable that runs round the room to my iMac which runs JMRI (of course). This then runs the WiThrottle server so that I can control the railroad from my iPad although I tend to use the JMRI panel for the points.

I was looking at having some vinyl back-scenes printed but the cost was a bit more than I liked. I had a brainwave and asked my friend Mark if he could paint some for me. He is an excellent modeller and artist.  He took on the challenge and painted the complete back drop on some spare foam board, all in oils. You can see the results in the images. These are excellent but are currently only placed rather than fixed. There was a "quid-pro-quo" in that I have agreed to design him a web site for his painting - he specialises in painting WWII aircraft and is very good. Once his web site is live I will post the URL - it is worth going there and looking.

I have cut up some polystyrene sheet and layered it as a base for the hills. This was then covered with plaster impregnated bandage and painted. I am in the middle of this and am trying to come up with a decent colour for the base of the scenery. So far, I have used burnt umber, then a white/umber mix. I finally found what I thought was a light brown paint in our local Hobbycraft store only to find out that it was actually gold. As I didn't have the light on when doing the painting on a recent morning, I didn't notice. Turn the light on and it shines! I am trying to find a nice acrylic paint at a reasonable price that will give the effect I want.

I am in the process of building up a laser cut wood craftsman kit from Blair Line - "Greene's Feed & Seed". This is going together very nicely. I intend to airbrush it so have left the window glass out. I will replace this using Microscale Krystal Klear which makes small window glass very easily.

Lastly, I felt that I needed another road loco and found a new Bachmann GP9 on Ebay that came complete with DCC (no sound unfortunately) at $80. I have now got my complete roster including all of the freight cars so I am ready to get going properly.

Anyway, here are a few photos to show you where I am.