Sunday 28 April 2013

Garage's in New York State

Last fall while touring through New York State on the way to Expo 2012 Don Janes and I stopped in Cohocton, NY  to check out the old Alco's stored there. At the corner near the yard are three consecutive homes with garages that had a kind of interesting look to them. I took a few photos to use as inspiration for my own garage projects...George Dutka

Saturday 27 April 2013

Weekend Leftovers - April

Odds and Ends

I had mentioned using Dave Frary's idea Weekend Odds and Ends in my off modelling season so here we begin. I am calling it Weekend Leftovers...George Dutka

This past Wednesday the duck under causeway was removed. Boy it sure makes a difference as I move my Sailboat gear out from under the layout.

At the end of each modelling season I put my rolling stock and engines in this case for storage. It helps keep the dust off while not in use. I am looking forward to adding the yards next season as currently only half of my rolling stock makes it out into consists. The case is full but I have room for at least two more shelves if needed.

Don Janes took this photo while visiting a steam operated railway in Hawaii last week. That's some beard.

Thursday 25 April 2013

Tilting Barn

I found this photo of a mid-western barn with a little bit of a interesting view that one might be able to fix in photoshop. Anyhow thought that it could make a neat modeling project...George Dutka

Sunday 21 April 2013

Another Modelers Season Ends

In the WRD last post you viewed Peter Mumby's photos of the White River Division. Now here is my photos taken thirty years after my 1957 photo session in WRJ. We see a B&M Guilford engine coasting through the yard. Contemporary freight cars can be found laying over in the tracks once filled by 40' boxcars.
 Era of changes
 on the White River Division

Last week Peter Mumby was over on two afternoons with his collection of what I call contemporary equipment and engines. We had a couple of long photo sessions that went really well. On day two of our photo shoot I also had my last layout visitor for the season in the midst of the train staging. He got a kind of "Back to the Future" look at the White River Division.

Peter Mumby is seen staging a double crossing of  CN-CPR freight's during our two day photo shoot. Peter had brought over a group of engines and cars that could have been seen in New England during the 1980's.

After two days during which I lost count the number of times I ducked under my duck under I realised why I could not move the day after. Last week was the last continuous running of the WRD. The duck under is coming out and my layout will become a point to point operation. I seem to only run the layout as point to point anyway. Most trains enter the layout from staging at one end and depart into staging at the other.

 After a week of rain I can not find a leak from my window or wall in the layout room. I still plan to take a closer look next week at this area as I have already taken the trim off the window. Now that it is warm and once the ground drys a little I can also take a good look outside.

What I think might happen to my layout is WRJ station scene will become one end of the layout. The foreground main line through the countryside and the area that my drop in modules at West Barre are will be removed. The staging tracks will then become WRJ yard as I do not want trains leaving WRJ to head right into staging. The coal tower and sand shed will be foreground structures. One switch leading into staging at Bellows Crossing will be removed that has always bothered me. It is the only curved switch on the layout and gives me problems with passenger cars and long engines. The track will then become almost straight there. The yard area will be portable and removable since I may have to get at the wall in the future. Also if we move at some point I can then take the yard with me. In fact everything I will be building from this point forward will be removable and portable. Just over half of the layout will remain as is. At the opposite end from WRJ I will build a curve into the next room that will house Bellows Falls yard. This curved area I will try to include my drop in modules of Fairlee and West Barre.

A lone MEC engine heads out onto the causeway with a short freights.

I guess I will have till next fall when I begin modeling again to figure things out. I am really glad to be getting rid of the duck under and I feel the White River Division will become a better layout in the process...George Dutka

Two leased geeps are seen heading out on the causeway which is my entry duck-under to the White River Division. One can see the other end of the layout which is Bellows Crossing.  This is one of the last photos that will be taken of this portion of the layout.
A WRD freight is lead by a duo of MEC U25B's out over the duck-under causeway. These two engines once operated on the WRD regularly before scenery and structures were added.  You see they where originally mine. I had built and detailed them from Bowser models along with the MEC caboose seen in the other photo. Once I committed to DCC-sound I sold them to Peter Mumby so I would had extra funds to purchase 1950's era DCC sound engines. It has been at least 10 years since they have last  been on the White River Division.

Friday 19 April 2013

Snapshot - April 2013

CP 4200 works a short freight through Northfield Falls.  This C424 model, based on an Atlas unit, was built by Charls Gendron.
Railfanning the White River Division 
in the 1980's

by Peter Mumby
photos by Peter Mumby

Many of you doubtless read George's recent post regarding a 1957 railfanning expedition on the White River Division.  He sure was pleased to catch those BM F-2s, but I was amazed at seeing any of his photos at all from that era.  He's either a lot older than he looks, or he was introduced to railways and f-stops when he was still wearing short pants.  At any rate, fast forward 25 or 30 years and George has once again taken his camera's to White River Country - and this time he took me along!  I guess urban renewal can't have been too big a factor in this part of New England.  Most of the structures you noticed in the earlier photos hadn't changed much in appearance - even many of the 1950s vehicles still seemed to be in place!  During our outing the sun shone down on us, and Lady Luck did as well.  We caught B&M trains operating with Guilford/MEC power as well as leased BAR units.  Central Vermont trains were using CN locomotives, but instead of the customary 9500s we found a pair of 5500-series GP38-2s.  MLW C424 units are regulars on CP trains in this area, but we had the good fortune to find class unit 4200 which had been constructed with RS-18-style fuel tanks.  It all made for a great expedition - an opinion I hope you'll share as the following photos unfold. 

BAR units perform some local work at Bellows Crossing.  These Atlas and Proto 2000 models, originally produced for our friend Luc Sabourin, have since migrated to Peter Mumby's collection.
This view of the tail end of a CP freight was lensed at the White River.  The van is a Rapido model straight out of the box while the 40' boxcars are based on Front Range models.  292516 was detailed and painted for CP-subsidiary Esquimalt and Nanaimo.
CP 3081 is on the approach to Bellows Crossing.  Sister unit 3050 was the 1000th locomotive produced at General Motors Diesel Division in London, Ontario.  This milestone was recognised at a GMD roll-out ceremony in June 1986 which was attended by many dignitaries, including David Peterson, the Premier of Ontario.
CN 5566 is temporarily delaying road traffic near Barnett, Vt.  This model was built from an Athearn "blue box" kit with the addition of a Canadian Prototype Replicas cab and a variety of Miniatures by Eric detail parts.  Sister unit 5560 (GMD 1973) was the first GM locomotive built for CN with the wide (safety) cab.  On CN these GP38-2s toil on today as 4700s, their original number series having been given over to the cowl-bodied SD60s.
 The White River never looked so good!  How could that fisherman ignore activity like that?       

Thursday 18 April 2013

Yesterday's Wordless Wednesday

I took that shot of the mailbox's near the covered bridges in Northfield Falls, Vermont. They are within sight of the CV tracks. Kind of a neat attempt of keeping ones old mailbox a bit longer using a second older one as a cover...George Dutka

Saturday 13 April 2013

Early Spring in Vermont

I took this photo last Spring while travelling through Vermont on Route 7. I was following the old Rutland Ry. tracks, now the VTR south from Burlington. As I approached New Haven Jct I saw the view above. Although I did not see a train I did stop here to take in this great view. What I find appealing is the layered look of the background. The tracks in the foreground by a pond. Next is a ridge of evergreens. In behind this one can see a nice looking barn. Behind this one can see a few misty gray layers of mountains. What a nice backdrop one could come away with from this view...George Dutka 

Friday 12 April 2013

Re-detailing a B&M RS-3

My re-detailed Atlas B&M engine heads over the White River
 B&M #1506
When I purchased two Bachmann RS-3's back in December which were both numbered 1536 that gave me three RS-3's with the same number. I had many years ago painted and lettered an Atlas RS-3 as 1536. I thought my Atlas engine could be a candidate for renumbering and detailing.

If I painted out the 3 and added a 0 I could detail my RS-3 into a different looking B&M engine. Since I already have two DCC sound RS-3 engines operating on the layout it might be best to turn this engine into a dummy. I could use the engine as extra power on the shop track or on longer trains.

My Atlas RS-3 as it once looked while running over the White River Division for many years. When I added DCC to my layout the unit was retired to my storage cabinet till I decided what I would do with it.
I had cut off the number board and filed the corner to accept a new number board.
The most obvious difference between B&M 1536 and 1506 is in the style of the number boards at each corner. Peter Mumby had a package of similar number boards handy that made the conversion easy. I began the refit by removing the power leads and  engine drive gears. These I saved in a baggy just in case I wanted to re-power the unit at a later date. I then carved off the four corner number boards as best I could with a sharp hobby knife. I did not do any sanding as this is a finished unit and I did not want to repaint and decal the engine again. The carved areas got a touch of Floquil engine black. I then filed a notch to set the new number boards in each corner. I used Detail Associates NB 2602 number boards. These also got painted engine black.

When I decided to change the number I needed to paint out the 3 and add a 0. I used Scalecoat B&M maroon #S2123. I then used the 0 from my B&M  #5815H Accu-cals set. I was luck that the number stayed together as the set is quiet old. For the number boards I used Microscale CNR steam set 87-1019. Once all the decaling was done I gave the whole engine a coat of Floquil flat finish followed by some Bragdon weathering powders...George Dutka

The new number boards are added, the numbering changed and a coat of Floquil flat finish applied.
My re-detailed RS-3 heads over the causeway towards Middlesex Centre.

Monday 8 April 2013

Weekend Odds and Ends

Last weekend I noted Dave Frary posted on his blog a title called Weekend Odds and Ends. This was a group of shots from his files which are just random modeling views from the past. I thought that made a nice easy post for Dave to put together. A few photos not related to each other but neat to see with a short comment. I think I may do that on random weekends especially through the summer when posts will be light. You can check out Dave's site through the links on the side of this blog...George Dutka.

Sunday 7 April 2013

D&H Caboose

A finished D&H caboose is seen operating over the White River Division. This is a rare sight and only happens when trains are rerouted due to derailments.

Adding a little D&H to the White River Division

Back in 2010 this Nickel Plate Product, D&H brass caboose came through Peter Mumby's used stock items. At $60 it was a great deal.  I had seen the prototype cabooses first hand when I began railfanning in New England many years ago. I have always liked the  D&H Ry., but it was just a road that did not fit into my scheme of things. I decided I could use it on occasion for rerouted D&H trains over the White River Division. The caboose has not seen much service on the WRD but at the price it was a good addition to my caboose collection.

My D&H van is seen before I began painting and detailing during the winter of 2010.
The Model
Finishing this model was a fairly easy job. I know I used a photo of  prototype caboose #35974, but can not find it at the moment. The only additions to the model are true scale #58 Kadee couplers and a conductor on the platform. My conductor is actually a Woodland Scenics engineman for the time being. The body was painted Floquil Tuscan red with a little mix of boxcar red added. The roof and under body is grimy black. I used Floquil D&RGW yellow which is a gold-yellow colour. I did not have a D&H caboose decal set but the Tichy decals for boxcars has all one needs to letter this model. The caboose got a light spray of Floquil grime on the trucks and underframe with a few spots of rusty chalk weathering...George Dutka

A D&H freight is departing Westminster Center on the White River Division en route to Rouses Point, NY.

Saturday 6 April 2013

Floquil Washes and Stains

I was going through the Walthers 2013 catalogue looking at paint colours and came across a new product available by Floquil. It is called Washes and can be found on page 842. To my surprise they also have Stains once again on page 841. Floquil had not made any stains in some time. I really liked using their Flo-Stains in the past and have to give these new products a try. My favourite was Driftwood and I see they have 14 stains including Oil & Grease and Mud. The Washes which I think are a water based Polly Scale product lists Walnut, Pine, Redwood, Barn Red and Blue and Black Washes along with many others. If you have tried these Washes and Stains please let me know what you think...George Dutka

Friday 5 April 2013

Manitowaning, Ont.

Manitowaning waterfront as it looked during the summer of 2012.

My Wordless Wednesday No. 20 photo featured a water scene. I had a few comments on the scene so I thought I best give you a little more details about the location and a few more photos.

The photo was taken last summer when I was up on Manitoulin Island. I had been sailing on a fiends boat for a week in the North Channel. During my drive back to the ferry that would take me back to the mainland I came across this neat scene in the town of Manitowaning, Ont The boat is the SS Norisle which is the retired ferry that was the connection to the mainland and many of the ports along Georgian Bay from 1946 to 1974. Along with passengers it also carried freight between locations. Today it is on display.

The town has a few interesting historical building including the two seen in Wordless Wednesday no. 20. The town has a nice old lighthouse and church. All these structures are candidates for modeling. Although Manitowaning  is not a railroad location I feel it gives one inspiration for a nice waterfront scene...George Dutka

The Norisle in service.
The Burns Wharf structure is now used as the local  playhouse in season.
The lighthouse is found up on the ridge and is typical of many found in the North Channel.

Monday 1 April 2013

Modeling Maine in Narrow Gauge

I started a new blog called Modeling Maine in Narrow Gauge. I have been a Maine Two Foot fan since I began modeling in 1979. The introduction to the blog fills one in with details. I wanted to stay away from posting my narrow gauge rambling in this WRD standard gauge blog. I have already done one post on my joint narrow gauge module with Peter Mumby here, and that is enough. I have re-posted the W&Q article from January in my new blog. Peter and I have finished the On30" W&Q modules and will at some point cover what we did.

For now in this new blog I plan on posting about 3 times a month. I may also have a Wordless Wednesday included from time to time and maybe a snapshot type of feature. Mainly I will cover what I have done recently plus some ramblings from the past 30 plus years of narrow gauge modeling. A lot has changed. The link to the blog is below and will also be found on my sidebar Links. So if you are interested in Maine narrow gauge modeling please feel free to take a peek from time to time...George Dutka

Modeling Maine in Narrow Gauge