Saturday, 5 January 2013

B&M Frt. House - Fairlee, Vermont

This weeks Wordless Wednesday gave you a sneak peak of the Fairlee frt. house in operation on the White River Division.

A New Freight House
 for the White River Division

While working on the remodel of the West Barre station I got thinking of my barn that has been sitting on my bookshelf near my workbench for about 5 years. I had originally built it for my Northfield Falls scene. I started with a paper mock-up as a stand in for a couple of years which looked great, but for some reason when I built the model it was way to big for my scene. I built a second reduced size barn leaving me with this larger version without a use.

The barn as it was originally built. It sat on my book shelf for a few years before it became useful again.
 I did not need another barn as a drop-in diorama but maybe it could be re-purposed.  If I added a loading platform, station signs, order board and other related railroad hardware it could work as a freight house. It did have the B&M colours but in reverse (walls should be cream and the trim brown-red). I thought what the heck the B&M was short of cream colour paint, but had loads of red at the time the frt. house was to be painted.

I picked the local as Fairlee, Vermont since the roof line and windows kind of reflects what I viewed on the station this fall. As far as I know there never was a frt. house in Fairlee, but if there was one mine would have been it. On the White River Division the Fairlee station burned down and the operator was moved across the tracks into the frt. house. The order board and phone box was moved to this new location also. The station location was left as a parking lot till a new milk platform was built in its place.

I started the diorama by building up the frt. house base from laser cut kits leftovers, painting it concrete with washes of chalk weathering. I then added some basic scenery to the diorama. Next I worked on building the raised platform out of strip wood which was given a coating of Hunterline stains and Bragdon weathering powders. I used 1"x8" for the planking. For the stairs I used Central Valley #1602 steps and ladders. I built a fence at the rear which has a billboard attached.

Most of the details have been added. I am in the process of applying some weeds to the base of the frt. house platform before adding it to my layout. Around the building I added old tires, skids and a fuel oil tank.

A close-up view of the loading platform.
 Station details and signs
I began by adding frosted window glazing to the building. I really like this look. I wanted the windows to look kind of dirty. I spray Floquil flat finish on clear plastic before cutting and installing in the windows. I have used this method on my barns also. To the roof I added a Juneco small metal cast brick chimney. For the order board I used a 8'x8' post weathered with Hunterline stain. I then ran the rods that link the blades. The blades are BEST #4027 detail parts. The lantern between the blades is an older Roundhouse marker #2951. I added a B&M style phone box to the front of the frt. house to reflect the buildings heritage. The platform and interior was loaded with crates, barrels, milk cans and other casting which help bring the scene to life.

The barn was originally air brushed Floquil Tuscan Red with a light coat of caboose red applied while the Tuscan was still wet. I air brushed highlights immediately with signal red. The trim and windows are painted  aged concrete.

The station signs are colour photocopies of the originals. The Look out for mail bags circle is a copy of the sign found on the B&M Ely, Vt. station. The REA signs under the station name on both ends are reduced copies of the originals found on the Ely, Vt. station. I added two Western Union metal signs. One on the parking lot end of the frt. house and one on the order board. I had also used the same REA and Western Union signs on my West Barre station.

At the moment this drop-in diorama is my favourite has a real New England feel to it...George Dutka

A B&M Geep approaches the Fairlee freight house on the White River Division.

1 comment:

  1. Hi George,

    what a great model and great modeling skills. I especially like the look of the model in front of that well done background forest.

    Can´t wait to see more of your stuff...