Monday, June 21, 2010

Layout Construction – May 2010

Model Railroad Auction
The first part of May we attended an auction at the Ogden Union Station for a member of the Hostlers Model Railroad Club. The gentleman had unfortunately passed away and had left a large collection of equipment. The auction was held as a silent auction. There were a lot of pieces that I would have loved to won, but the other people kept bidding up the price and seemed like they wanted them more then I really needed them.

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I was able to win a few thing that really interested me. First up; was an electric engine that never ran on the Milwaukee Road, but might be fun to repaint into the Milwaukee Road color scheme as a “what-if” it had. Secondly, was a set of 3 Burlington box cars painted in a special gold paint scheme. If you click on the close-up photo you can see a spelling mistake made by the company that produced the model. Here is a little history behind the model. To commemorate winning the Railway Progress Institute's Golden Freight Car award for 1966, the Burlington painted one day's output (eight cars) of overhauled XM-32 box cars gold with black lettering in December 1966 at the Burlington's freight car shop in Havelock, Nebraska. I might have not seen the incorrect spelling except for a note from the previous owner included with the box.

Heath Gypsum Plant
I figured as long as I was in the building structures mode, I would complete one more building. This building will become the gypsum plant at Heath, Montana. The plant is about 12 miles east of Lewistown on another branch line. Here is an aerial photo taken in the 60’s.


My version of the plant began as an inexpensive plastic kit purchased on eBay. The challenge is not make it look like an inexpensive kit when finished. Using a variety of paints and chalks, it is to weather the structure to give it an aged appearance. The final paint will be applied after the surrounding scenery is in place.

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Fascia Construction
I finished the front of the layout with some hardboard fascia. The fascia will cover the lights on the lower level giving the layout a more finished appearance. Now to decide the color to paint it.

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Another eBay Purchase
I found another treasure on eBay. This is an Athearn Trainmaster. The locomotive is unpowered and will have a sound unit added to it sometime in the future.

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Layout Construction – April 2010


April was a tough month, with federal taxes and licensing for two vehicles due, there was not a lot of money left for fun. I had enough projects to get through the month without having to spend any money.

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I had been working on the designs for the Lewistown station that I will eventually scratch build. It seemed like a perfect time to print out the drawings and create a mockup of the building and see how it looked on the layout. Click here to see the actual photos from an earlier post.

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This also gave me the opportunity to build three building kits that I had purchased months ago. The stack yard and grain elevator will be located in Denton (Click for map). The grain bin will be part of a set to be located in Geraldine.

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I also spent some time working out a 3D model of the helix that connects the lower and upper levels of the layout. The 3D model allowed me to finalize the design of the supporting structure for the helix and the swing bridges.

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A close-up view of the helix and a view from the lower level heading across the bridge towards the helix.

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Another view with the helix cover in place (brown panels). Are you wondering how you get out of the room with track blocking the door? The last photo should answer that question. The swing bridges have moved out of the way for the door to open.