Monday 31 March 2014

Another Modelers Season is about to end

The Westboro local heads towards the shop track and freight house. This underpass is my dividing line between Westboro and White River Jct. as I did not have room to model a river scene.
I just realised once I looked at April on our modeling season is officially over...or at least after today`s model workday with Peter. I could not find two days together that I was free next month. With a large family, 5 children owning 5 is about to put their house on the market meaning I have been over helping on projects over the weekend hence no posts. We also have four grand children that also have dates posted on our calender....I am asking my wife about the two cans of paint in the laundry don`t want to know...and my boat...not sure how that will fit in as I want to launch by the end of April.

Anyhow I did have a great modeling season. This past Wednesday I did spend the whole day downstairs finishing off Westboro yard. The Westboro section house is now built and in place. The face board is all painted and the track to the next room is partially attached. The only structure that I had hoped to build this past winter was the B&M WRJ yard office...guess that might happen over those extra hot days of summer. Peter and I had a really productive group of Monday winter work sessions. We will cover some of our other projects in detail over the summer season. Posts will be off and on but I do have a lot of material to share...stay tuned...George Dutka

Osborn Model Kits

Instructions are found on the back of packaging.

Last week Dean Splittgerber asked me if I  had used or was aware of Osborn Model Kits. I had been giving a cross buck kit as a give away a few years back. It was at the local Copetown train show...but never did anything with it. I decided to take it out of the package and take a look. The cross buck looks like an easy build. I did checking their web site that Dean sent along and was surprised  that they offer a lot might want to check it out...George Dutka

Friday 28 March 2014

Smart Phone Model Photography

Nathan took this photo of about a third of my layout at the Bellows Crossing end. The shot is panned 180 degrees. The photo does not show how the layout curves around.
Last year my daughters live in boyfriend was showing some photos he took at a local hockey game. One was a panoramic view that took in most of the arena...a really cool shot. Seems the Apple smart phone has a setting that you push the photo button then pan your camera can get a 360 degree photo once finished. You have to be steady and fast to get all you want in the photo.

Well I got him downstairs to try it on my layout. My layout is one you can stand in the middle and follow it around by just turning around slowly. Nathan took the first view at one end getting about a third of the layout in. I gave it a try and got maybe half of the layout in but not quite as steady. I guess if we spent more time practicing we might have got the whole layout in. Here are the two photos we did. It is hard to post a good size file on this blog but it give one the general idea of what these phones can do....George Dutka

I took this photo looking towards the duckunder which is now gone. One can figure out the curve a bit better than in the other photo. The 90 degree corner at the duckunder is better seen also. I got about half the layout in my photo by panning faster.

Tuesday 25 March 2014

VTR 50th Anniversary Locomotive - Highball Graphics

It seems the model railroad industry does keeps up with the trends and changes in the real life railway industry. One such addition is the new VTR 50th Anniversary locomotive found in service this year. I recently noted a new decals for this unit offered by Highball Graphics...congratulations....George Dutka

Sunday 23 March 2014

CV - State Line Station

CV State Line station as it looks in 2011. I first visited this structure in 1999 and it has not changed at all since then. The double door is an change the golf course has made at some point.
I covered the CV flag stop which once stood at State Line...or at the crossing which is at the line dividing Connecticut and Massachusetts in the CVRHS Ambassador, Volume 10 No. 1, published in 2000. The station was moved to the Quaboag Country Club on Route 32 in Monson, Mass. sometime before 1950. I decided to stop by and take a few more detailed photos plus get some basic measurements so at some point I could build a model....George Dutka

This is the roadside view of the ex-station. This would have been the trackside view.
A postcard view of the CV State Line station when in use. This particular crossing today is a good place to get photos of NECR trains. The crossing is at a good angle to the tracks.
A look under the eves.
Roof line.

Saturday 22 March 2014

Two CPR Boxcars

Here we find the two CPR boxcars that we weathered to different degrees. Peter's car is on the right. Photos by Peter Mumby.
Even though I do not model a more contemporary era I do have a few of these pieces of rolling stock in my collection. In a past post I showed you my PanPastel lightly weathered CPR boxcar. Last Monday Peter Mumby brought along his version of a similar CPR boxcar that he gave a good dose of weathering. I thought it looked really good and very realistic. The cars really stand out once placed on a layout. We decided to photograph the two together in a string of cars. These two photos are taken by Peter...George Dutka

This view shows the other side of Peter's boxcar.

Friday 21 March 2014

Brookside Milk Cars at the Diamond

The local Rutland switcher is heading back into Bellows Crossing. It will have to wait till the B&M passes through town.
I took this photo some years ago for a feature on the Brookside milk cars. Well I have yet to finish it but thought I would share a photo from that file. The Rutland 0-8-0 switcher is a Proto model which sounds and runs great...maybe my favourite steam engine. I have a second one on hand to convert into a CV model. The three 40' Brooksdie milk cars are a few of my favourite milk cars. The middle one is a Train Miniatures model from many years ago that I improved on. The other two are also Train Miniatures-Walthers models that have had some work done to them too. At some point I will do a post featuring these Brookside milk cars. The B&M caboose is a brass model I purchased from Don Janes a few years back....thanks Don....George Dutka

Thursday 20 March 2014

Yesterday's Wordless Wednesday

Peter Mumby's photo of Westboro, NH on the WRD. Peter angled his shot to include the backdrop behind my WRJ yard.
This past week Peter and I had our work day at my house. We played around taking a few photos of projects we are working on. Once done Peter decided to take a few additional views of my Westboro yard. He wanted to get an angle which included the backdrop behind the WRJ yard scene. His photo is seen in yesterday's Wordless Wednesday with a second view above....George Dutka

Tuesday 18 March 2014

Colouring Castings with PanPastels

Here we have three O scale stumps for the W&Q modules that Peter Mumby and I built. Starting from the right one sees a stump primered, one with Hunterline stain and a finished stump using the four PanPastels seen in the photo.
 PanPastels and O Scale Castings

Peter Mumby and I get together each Monday through the winter to work on modeling projects that are of common interests. We have been playing around lately with PanPastels. Last Monday we spent part of the afternoon colouring some of our O scale castings. We had some mixed results...Check out my "Modeling Maine in Narrow Gauge" blog for the details....George Dutka

Modeling Maine in Narrow Gauge

Sunday 16 March 2014

White River Division - Westboro

A look at the engine service track form the end of the peninsula.
My Westboro scene is finally coming together well. Most of the scene is done other than the section house which will be located across from the sand house. Last week I finished my drawings for it. Hopefully next week I will get started on construction. I still have a few more details to add to the scene plus some more trees. These photos are a first look at the  Westboro shop track that I took a couple of weeks ago...enjoy...George Dutka

The fuel service area  appears to be busy today. I built the fuel service area as best I could, representing those elements found in photos of Westboro.
I located the water spout, sand tower and fuel dock by the sand house in the same order they once were on the prototype.
An overall view of the service area of Westboro. The B&M freight house once standing across the yard was a much larger structure. A reduction needed to be made since space was an issue. The Westboro sign is a reduced copy of the original station sign from the 1940-50's.

Saturday 15 March 2014

Gatorfoam Roadways

A finished bridge built from Gatorfoam. This is one of Dave Myers displays found at his booth.
During last fall's Expo Don Janes and I stopped by to visit with Dave Myers of Gatorfoam, and to pick up a large sheet of Gatorfoam which Dave cut in half for us...we got a better deal on splitting a large sheet and once cut would fit  nicely in Don's car. Dave discussed with us how one can use the foam as a roadway bridge. I questioned him on the finish. Dave pulled out a can of Sand Stone made by American Accents that he recommends using for roadways such as on the bridge seen above. The Gatorfoam is first cut with a hobby knife to resemble cracks and expansion joints. After painting some weathering chalks finish off the roadway....kind of a neat idea...George Dutka

Don holds a can of Sand Stone the product that Dave uses on his Gatorfoam roadways. Dave had a nice article published in the May 2005 issue of Model Railroader.

Friday 14 March 2014

Snapshot - March 2014

Westbound UP Stack train meets an eastbound manifest at Tucumcari, NM.  This was a Rock Island interchange at one time but the ROCK went bust and the line torn up.

     I always look forward to day three of our trip to Arizona.  That is when we start following the Union Pacific west of Tucumcari, NM  and the BNSF not too far west of Albuquerque , NM all the way to Holbrook, NM where we head southwest to our winter home in Apache Junction, AZ, about 30 miles east of Phoenix.  Weather here is in the 80’s and sunny every day.  Not trying to make you feel bad, just FYI.  This year I went a little further west to visit Winslow and Flagstaff AZ before heading south.  The following are a few shots I took on day 3 and 4.  Enjoy….Don Janes

An eastbound stack train, with another one in the distance pulls into Winslow for a crew change just before sunset.
A westbound stack trains leaves town with a fresh crew at dusk
Don Janes is "standing on a corner" in Winslow, Arizona
Dawn brought another eastbound container train into Winslow.
Two stack trains meet at the west end of Winslow.
An eastbound BNSF train rounds an S curve just east of Flagstaff.

Two more container trains meet east of Flagstaff.
An eastbound BNSF manifest passes Darling, AZ just east of Flagstaff.
A small RR museum in Winslow with several ATSF cabooses and a big hook.

Thursday 13 March 2014

Yesterday's Wordless Wednesday

I used a few of my Woodland Scenics hobos in behind my garage scene. I had an extra outhouse on hand so I loaned it to the boys....I am now thinking they just may never leave...oh well...George Dutka

Sunday 9 March 2014

Weekend Leftovers - March

With winter coming to an end in about 12 days Gary Pembleton passed along this interesting BBQ photo. What a nice lead-in to a more favorable season. This coil car would make a great addition to any railroaders fleet I would think.
You may have seen this the current Classic Trains (Spring 2014) Jim Shaughnessy has a very nice article called "Variety in the Valley" which features a good amount of Jim's photos along the Connecticut River line. He covers all five Class 1 and four short lines over 10 pages. The extra full page photo on page 4 is relates to the CPR-B&M joint passenger service which Jim explains in his feature.

 How times have the February 2014 issue of Sail magazine they included a feature covering 6 tips one can use to get better photos using a smart phone. It appears we are moving away from the camera these days. Two of the tips I did find noteworthy. One, use your RayBan sunglasses to shoot through to get a polarized effect. The other is to print your best and precious images on good quality paper as it appears no one is sure yet if files will be readable and usable into the distant future......paper will......does the future hold railfans out trackside with only a smart phone...George Dutka

Saturday 8 March 2014

New B&M Freight House - Installed

My Westboro freight house was placed on a slight angle to the service tracks nearby. This appears more appealing with the option of adding an additional truck at the side. I currently placed a loaded pickup there. There is enough trackage at this end of the peninsula for one car to be spotted at the docks. If I extend the scene the track will also be serviceable instead of just staged. I did have to move the stair location on my model to allow an area for large truck loading.
Westboro, NH on the White River Division
I took a group of photos of the finished structure now placed in service in my Westboro scene. I still have some work to do with the lighting is not all that great for photos. I also forgot to take the filter off the lens, so excuse the circles in some photos....George Dutka

Although the freight house is at the end of my peninsula I added a short piece of track that can hold one car. Today it is empty but on most visits to the White River Division one will find a car being unloaded.
Both end received signs that I have copied and reduced from the prototype Westboro station sign.
This is the other side of the freight house. I built a small gravel hump so smaller pickup trucks can be loaded. By this time the prototype freight house had another purpose, mine is dual use as a freight depot and a feed supplier.

Friday 7 March 2014

PanPastels - A Second Look

A string of cars Peter and I applied PanPastels to...though I would do a group photo.
After two workshops with Peter Mumby using PanPastels I thought I would give you a second look at some of the cars we did...we did take a lot more photos than was used in the original post. Here they are along with some of my thoughts regarding this product.

After our second  work session I had used some weathering on a Athearn wooden  REA boxcar body that I had yet assembled. I though I would get the body weathered then paint the underframe and wheels. Once the day was over I did not like how the weathering affect turned out on the car. I should have painted the roof first. This was a good chance to see if the weathering could be washed off as reported by PanPastels. Yes it does wash off with ease. I used my fingers to rub the sides but a tooth brush might help if one has a lot of details that the pastels was applied to. I did not use any soap.

I decided to weather this just out of the box CPR boxcar. I began with a light gray pastel which was applied very lightly. I then went over the door details and the rivet lines with a rusty looking pastel. I also used these on the roof and ends. I think it turned out pretty good giving the car a lightly weathered look.
For minimal weathering I still like the chalk effect, but if you want a subtle overall coating to a piece of rolling stock, or a heavy weathered car this is a great product. I found it is best to give the car a light overall coat using your colour of choice followed by highlights using an alternate shade. I think my favourite rolling stock choices for this project are open top and covered hoppers. They seem to really stand out on the layout.

I tried PanPastels on a CPR outside braced boxcar. I was wondering how it would look and how I would get the colouring between the bracing. Using the wedge sponge I was able to do a pretty good job but had a lot of areas that I could not get at. To get the overall coating effect to the sides and ends I used one of my brushes that are my powder weathering brushes to push the pastels into the areas I could not get at with the sponges. This seemed to work to some degree. I finished this car with Bragdon powders were no pastel coating appeared. From my limited applications I think the pastels work best on smooth side equipment....George Dutka

The sides have been finished but as one can see the ends still need some brushing to get the pastels into the areas that the foam brush could not reach. A light overcoat of pastels toned the boxcar red down to a more realistic look.
My outside braced boxcar after PanPastels
I pulled this car out of long time storage to become my first go at PanPastels. I used most of the browns and rusts that Peter had in light amounts. I actually used my fingers near the end of the process to help streak and blend the pastels.
Peter's finished boxcar and hopper on the WRD after a Monday afternoon workshop. He gave both cars a health dose of weathering.
Here one can see me working on my CPR boxcar while Peter dulls down his ONR boxcar during last weeks workshop.

Monday 3 March 2014

Weathering with PanPastels

This is what was included in Peters purchase, seven colours and a group of applicators. Two cars await application.
Let's Try Weathering with PanPastels.
by Peter Mumby 
photos by Peter Mumby

I found Tony Koester's recent weathering article (MR, Nov. 2013) quite intriguing.  Here was a method that promised to be quick and easy, yet looked relatively convincing.  Mess would be minimal, and there were no harmful fumes to inhale.  It sounded like something that could be right up my alley.

Acquiring the materials turned out to be the biggest part of the project.  The website identified a source here in London, but it wasn't exactly close to home.  I decided to simply keep an eye out at upcoming train shows.  This turned out to be a good strategy - at the Ganaraska train show in Port Hope the PanPastels were being displayed by GLX Scale Models from Ottawa.  A variety of the pans were open and available for experimentation - a sound marketing technique.  The pans themselves resembled make-up, and were priced accordingly.  Individual pans cost $7.00 each, while a kit of seven pans plus a package of applicators was $50.00.  The white and black included in the kit looked a little stark to me, so the proprietor indicated that I could select any seven individual pans and take a bag of applicators for the kit price.  A deal had been struck.

Instead of black I picked two shades of extra dark grey.  The white I replaced with a very light grey.  The reds were represented by two shades of iron oxide plus a rusty looking burnt sienna.  Raw umber completed my palette.

Work day...Peter came over last Monday and we spent some time weathering a few of our cars. This was the second time we got together and tested the weathering pastels. Peter was using the small applicator while I tried the wedge. George Dutka photo.

As per Tony's article, application simply involves rubbing the material on with the rubber applicators.  This can also be done with a brush or your finger.  Start with a light application, but it will wash off if you change your mind.  The iron oxides nicely toned down a typical red boxcar, while the light and dark greys looked good on the green cars.  The light grey looked especially good on a grey covered hopper, while the dark greys were a natural fit for the black open hoppers.  Apply a little rust to the trucks and you have a nice looking car.  Weathering powders or dry brushing can still be used to apply highlights - the PanPastels complement rather than supersede other techniques.  Take a look at the accompanying photos  and see if you might want to give the pastels a try.

Some very light gray was used on this car.

Both Peter and I tried one of his CPR hopper.  Peter went at this car with more weathering than I did...I really like the heavy weathering on the left. 

An overall coating of light gray on the sides and hints of rust on the top of the car really looked good. Although it really does not show all that well in this photo, this car turned out to be the best looker of our Monday afternoon workshop...George Dutka photo
The pastels gives boxcars a nice even weathered appearance. This was one of the first models Peter tried.
The hoppers got interior weathering also. I went with more weathering that Peter to the interior of the cars.