Thursday, 22 September 2016

Narrow Gauge Convention Report - Best Modular Layout in Show Don Janes

Soggy Bottom and Deep Cut Railway, Navigation & Cartage Co.

     One of the best attractions at the National Narrow gauge Convention in Augusta Maine was the three rooms full of Modular layouts.  George and I had visited two of the rooms and were extremely impressed with the high quality layouts on display but one evening while going over the convention brochure George discovered we had missed an entire room which was tucked away down several isolated corridors.  The next day we visited this secret room and discovered some of the best modular layouts at the convention.  My favorite in the room was this featured layout brought to the convention by a group from Ohio.  It turned out that the Soggy Bottom "O" scale layout won the best Modular Layout in Show Award decided by popular vote.  There were many layouts with more trains and railway equipment but I think it was the overall quality of the work and natural look of the scenes that made this such an attractive layout to view.  The workmanship was superb.  
This war scene shows a part of one side of the layout illustrates the effect given by the shadow box design
     The neat thing about this layout it was built using a shadow box design.  There were two side scenes and two end scenes, each in their own shadow box.  This effect separated the scenes from each other giving the impression of a longer run for the train without needing a lot of open space between scenes.  The other nice feature was the even lighting on the entire layout created by lights above the layout behind a valance created by the shadow box.  This made photographing the layout without a flash very easy as lighting was bright and evenly distributed over all of the scenes
     Sit back and enjoy the photos and see if you don't agree that this was a great looking modular layout.
Here is the other end of the wharf scene showing the busy dockside activity.  Notice how the train cleverly enters the scene under the walkway on the structure on the right.
This old mill scene fills the entire end module.  There is are are many great little detail scenes within the overall mill scene such as the photographer at the end of the platform. He must be waiting to shoot the next train through town.
The other end of the layout features this water tank scene based on the old Petticoat Junction TV series. Note the curious guy in the tree at left sneaking a peak of the three bathing beauties in the water tank. Look closely at the right of the photo and you can see where the train enters this scene. It is very well hidden.
The layout features several well detailed trackside scenes depicting the late 1800's.  Looks like the horse followed his master into the store.
Another shot of the above area from a different angle.
Looks like there are no environmental regulations in effect judging from the oily water pouring out of the discharge pipe at the "Old Canal Deswillery"
A narrow gauge train is passing the wharf while a fellow on the dock is waiting for a barge to come in.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Covered Bridge Model - Hunterline

A new offering by Hunterline on display at Augusta, Maine.
Hunterline premiered their new covered bridge kit at this years National Narrow Gauge Convention. Here are a few views...think this one will be a good seller. On another note leaving in the morning to Vegas so might not be any posts till I get back on the weekend although I think Don has something planned for you...George Dutka

Railranning Exeter, NH

The Boston bound Northeaster arrives at Exeter, NH on Sept. 6, 2016
Don and I stopped by the station in Exeter, NH on our way to visit Tom Oxnard's B&M layout in town. We found that we arrived close to the time of the Boston bound Northeaster so we decided to wait. It was also operating with a dome car so that was also neat to see. Listening in to the conversation of a few waiting passenger they had come to ride the dome car that day. The weather sucked due to Hermine and as the train arrived it began raining once again, Oh well...George Dutka

Flyer at station.

The dome car was right behind the engine.

Departing Exeter as it begins to rain. The old B&M station is seen to the left used as a general store and diner.

On the tail end is the Cabbage car.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Snapshot - September 2016

A short PanAm train is set to go to Portsmouth, NH on Sept 6 2016.
Rockingham Jct.
After visiting layouts in Exeter and Greenland, NH  Don and I visited Rockingham Jct. NH during our trip to Maine. Thanks to Dan Raymond for guiding us to this location a short distance away. This day was one full of rain and overcast sky's thanks to hurricane Hermine. At Rockingham Jct.a PanAm train is awaiting a crew to continue on...possibly Portsmouth, NH. The train is sitting on this branch line just off the corridor main line running north and south. Not many options for a good photo as it was later in the day and very overcast. The rain had stopped which was a blessing as we still had a long drive ahead. For my photo I just decided to crop out the whole sky and surrounding area with the wooden overhead bridge we stood on for the photo...this is what I came up with....George

A Visit to Waterville, Maine

Two PanAm geeps work the Saturday yard job pulling a cut of cars out beyond the yard area.
Last Saturday Don and I decided to head up to Waterville, Maine to check out the yard, shops and engine facilities of the old MEC. As it turned out most was not accessible to us, which was no surprise. The yard lead does stretches out of the yard leaving us some options to photograph the yard work. We also got a good view from a playground used by a local daycare...lucky it was a Saturday or we would have been in trouble there also...was nice to see the MEC heritage unit up close working the yard...George Dutka

Two vintage way to travel in one photo. This is the crossing in the yard near the offices.

Guilford boxcars that seem to be well painted.
Was neat to find a MEC geep working the old MEC yard and on a sunny day to boot. Sept. 10, 2016
Don and I found this impressive bridge that crosses the river in Waterville with mills in the background. There is a dam on the right side of the photo which gave us some other interesting photo options...if only there was a train.

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Swanton, Vermont Mill

The mill in Swanton, Vermont along the CV back in 1986. This building has since been removed.
Peter Mumby passed along a group of New England slide mainly buildings and bridges a few years ago. I finally got around to scanning these views. These views document the mill that once stood in Swanton and was serviced by the Central Vermont...George Dutka

Thursday, 15 September 2016

National Narrow Gauge Convention 2016

This was on our bus trip up to the SR&RL in Philips, Maine. The museum set up a railfan type of events. Unfortunately they did not figure out that they needed to control the two bus loads of narrow gauge fans. On this occasion they were scattered everywhere during the freight run-by. I just stood well back and took in the scene and the crowd. As one can also see there was too much shade for a good shot and once into the sun, one was shooting right into it.
Don Janes and I returned on Monday from a nice week in Maine. We took in this years NNGC in Augusta, Maine. We could not fit it all in but did take in all the 2 foot railfan events. We also got up as far as Waterville, Maine to check out the standard gauge and a few layouts to boot. More to follow...George Dutka

An On30 Maine layout which I think was brought over from England.

Don railfanning the layouts. Don will be covering some of his favorites.

At Waterville, Maine Don and I took in the MEC heritage unit switching a southbound train.

Saturday, 10 September 2016

White River Division Photo

A CV local headed by an Alco switcher is headed back to Bellows Falls, Vermont on the White River Division.
On the Table of Contents page in the current  (Sept) issue of RMC there is a small view of the WRD near the milk platform and the general store. Thought I would show you the larger version...George Dutka

Friday, 9 September 2016

Muskoka Visit

Up in Muskoka country the ex-CN station at Gravenhurst, Ont. is in excellent condition and still in use by local business.
Back at the beginning of August my wife took a short road trip up to Muskoka. I had not visited many of the towns around the lake which was a fun run. Staying in Gravenhurst, Ont. I took a few early morning views of the restored station. No train chasing just taking in the scenic views of the area. On the way home we stopped in at Wasaga Beach and Collingwood. The CN Collingwood station is now a museum and in great shape...I did get a few views there trains there anymore though...George Dutka

This year marks the 150th year for the Seguin. It is the oldest operating steam ship in Canada. The captain is a retired CN conductor I used to work with. There was a big gang boarding when I took this photo from our patio lunch table at a local waterfront spot in Gravenhurst, Ont. The other steam ship is a museum.

A nice looking motor car. Aug. 3, 2016.

The main entrance to the station which is trackside.

A street side view of Collingwood station.

A look down what was once trackside at the large Collingwood station.
At Collingwood some rail is left and a display of CN boxcars which I think are also used by the museum as storage.

Thursday, 8 September 2016

West Shore Line's - NYC Covered Hopper

An overhead view of a West Shore Line kit. Rich did a fine job with this one.
Back this spring I purchased a nice looking kit that was built. No paint, lettering or coupler's but all else was done (the hard stuff). If you remember back a few decades, Central Hobbies Supplies in Syracuse, NY had a line of prototype kits. I never purchase any at the time, but it is sure nice to finally have one and built to boot. The gentleman that sold me the car mentioned it was built by the late Richard Chrysler. The rest of the story is unclear but he got the car and never painted it and now it's finished. Nice to have something Richard had done such a fine job building

This West Shore Line kit is a replica of a 1946 Dispatch Shops (Rochester) built class LO 70-ton covered hopper.
 What I Did
 The car got a coat of Floquil SP lettering gray followed by a coat of gloss. Trucks are painted black. The decals are really nice and went on easily. The lettering diagram with the kit helped a lot. After a coat of flat finish I used a few of the light gray Bragdon powders and Pan Pastels. The trucks are hit with rust and grime...George Dutka

This is what came in the box.
The finished model on top of the box.
Ready for service this fall on the White River Division.

Sunday, 4 September 2016

National Narrow Gauge Convention 2016

The gauge is two feet between the rails in Portland Maine. Note the long ties. The museum runs on the old Grand Trunk line that ran along the waterfront.
 On Monday Don Janes and I are off to the NNGC in Augusta, Maine. Looking forward to seeing all those small steamers in action. Peter Mumby and I stopped by the Portland Maine collection the last day of March this year for a quick visit. At that time the museum was closed....George Dutka

Lobster's are what most look for in Maine, but Don and I are looking for the live little steamer's on this visit.