Monday 30 November 2015

Palmer Detail

We all have leftover decals from projects of our favorite railroads. If yours is the CV in the 1980's as in this photo, just paint up some barrels green and add decal logo's....George Dutka

Sunday 29 November 2015

Branchline Trains N Scale Creamery - A second look

I used as many ice cream signs that I could find for Hood's as this is the place to get your treats. The roofing got some patches and one can find a few no trespassing signs applied.
The following photos gives one a look around the structure. I will show you it mounted on Gatorfoam shortly and more details added...George Dutka

The paper roofing which resembles tar-paper got a light coating of Bragdon dark rust. The chimney has yet to be attached.

The road side view of structure. The signs are photocopies of Hood's advertising's reduced to fit this N scale model.

A track side view of the Hood's facilities.

Saturday 28 November 2015

Branchline Trains Creamery - N Scale

My N scale creamery is built as an ice cream plant.
The prototype for this kit is a creamery built at Clark's near Campbell Hall, NY along the NYO&W. Similar structures are found throughout the Northeast. The O&W built many of the creameries along their line and most likely painted them company colours. Mine is built as a Hood's ice cream plant and I decided on the typical white found on many.

I finished this structure back in April or before my summer modeling break. Over the next couple of posts I will show you how it all went.

The creamery did not come with bracing but I have lots in my scrap box that I used. The kit's trim is self sticking. Some did not stick well and canopy cement was used. The platforms on my kit was warped which needed some support underneath. The roofing included was used. It is tarpaper which needs to be glued down. The chimney is large, I cut mine down a bit.

The walls got a coating of Hunterline weathering mix followed by Hunterline cottage white. The white did an acceptable job colouring the walls but it did need some white chalk and powders applied to make the colour look right. Cottage white although a nice colour I find hard to work with and would not recommend it's use if you don't have any on hand. I added window glazing which has a flat finish applied. Paper bag shades are also used. The photos and captions tell the rest of the story...George Dutka

The walls are assembled and extra bracing is applied.

The roof, windows and add on extensions are being worked on. The windows are a build up of a few pieces as seen on the sheeting.

The walls and docks have Hunterline weathering mix added. The roofing area got grimy black painted around the edges before the tar-paper is added.

The Hunterline cottage white and white chalk and powders are added. The roofing is next.

Friday 27 November 2015

Snapshot - November 2015

 A fall visit on Oct. 4, 1997
I have taken this view a number of times in each of the seasons. I have not been through Chester, Vt, recently so I am not sure if the caboose is still there...a neat town that has many railway photo options even when a train is not passing through...George Dutka

Thursday 26 November 2015

Look What CP Sent Down the Connecticut River Line Today!

Sometimes a single good (or, unexpected) shot is all it takes to make for an excellent day of railfanning.  Is this that photo?
Story by Peter Mumby............Photos by George Dutka

This is the kind of Kodak moment that keeps the local railfans heading trackside.  Presumably these units were on a run-through to Montreal and were diverted into Green Mountain country.  I just happened to be on the scene when they pulled up to a level crossing to make a crew change.  This gave me enough time to run up a nearby incline to grab a panoramic shot as well.  They stayed in the area for another day or two, allowing me the opportunity to catch them (singly, this time) in two other locations.  Then, they were gone.  I had my opportunity and I'm glad I was able to make the best of it!

I picked up these models of Soo 501-A and 502-A, EMD FP7A units (Intermountain, DCC/Sound) at last week's Ancaster show.  George thought they would look show well amid the scenery of the WRD layout, and our first Monday afternoon modelling session of the new season presented a good photo opportunity.  There's nothing like new acquisitions to send you looking into the collection for related pieces, so I put together a short train of Soo and CP equipment for the occasion.  Each piece received a light PanPastel weathering treatment before the appointment with George's camera.

A quick hike up a nearby knoll allowed for this nearly panoramic view of the F units and their train of CP/Soo equipment.
Here are a few notes about the rolling stock appearing with the F units.  CP 437076 is a True Line Trains caboose model of recent vintage.  CP 100182, a 40' combination door boxcar, is a nicely detailed model that I picked up at the recent Woodstock train show.  Soo 75846 was assembled recently: see the post of May 22, 2015, "40' Soo Line Double Door Boxcars." The other pieces date back years ago to my formative years in the hobby.  CP431784 was assembled from a Juneco caboose kit long before global warming was a topic of everyday conversation.  Soo 137752 and 137508 date back to when the Athearn "blue box" 40' boxcar was still the king of HO.  The car with the six foot door was lettered with CDS HO-75 dry transfers, while the one with the eight foot door was lettered with Technicals from SLHTS (Soo Line Historical and Technical Society).  Soo 136480 is based on a much older model, an Athearn metal line car from the early 1950s.  It, too, was lettered with SLHTS Technicals.  Finally, Soo 69040 is an E&B Valley kit decorated with a Herald King H-101 set.  How's that for historical record keeping?

So, keep your camera handy any time you detour near the tracks -  and keep attending your local train shows.  You never know just what you might stumble across!

The next day one of the visiting F units was operating solo on a caboose hop.

A diamond is a railfan's best friend?

Now, wouldn't it be nice if the railfan had access to the modeller's 0-5-0 switcher?  Then we could rearrange a shot to suit our every purpose!

Monday 23 November 2015

Boxcar Routing

A DT&I auto box car shows up in the B&M White River Jct. yard and is left out front of the yard office for the clerks to sort out...a call needs to be make I am sure.
As mentioned in Peter's post here is a story about car routing while I worked switching as a CN conductor at the Ford Talbotville plant. The operations was actually NS which the CN was contracted to. While I was up on the second floor in the car control office a call came in. The clerk here was famous for sending rolling stock that he did not know the destination for to a NS yard deep in the southern US for them to figure out. Well a confused and frustrated clerk from down there asked why he would send a CPR car down there for interchange with the CPR when the CPR interchange was only a couple of miles away from the Talbotville yard. Guess it pays to look at the reporting marks on a car first...George Dutka

I am sure this is the last time we will see this car on the is currently on it's way back to Detroit.

Sunday 22 November 2015

CNR Gondola Interior

The interior got some limestone dust, dirt and Bragdon powders added prior to the additional scrap seen here.
While working on the B&M hopper I decided to dirty up my old Athearn 48'6" drop end gondola. I will cover this cars construction later this winter. I had added a wood floor to it when built back in the 1980's. I wanted the interior to look a bit more interesting. I added a bit of the limestone dust along with a bit of right of way dirt from Westboro, NH. I used random brushing of Floquil flat finish first to have something to hold it down. I then used my new Floquil markers to colour some rail, ties and wire that is glued into place....this interior still will get a few more goodies added shortly once they are trimmed and painted...George Dutka

I picked up some Testor-Floquil markers this week. They are rust, rail brown and rail tie brown in this particular package. I used them to colour some details added to my gondola. So far they seem to be a good purchase.

Saturday 21 November 2015

B&M PS-2 Covered Hopper

A B&M covered hopper is found in a White River Division local.
Last weekend I picked up a few used pieces of rolling stock while attending the Ancaster Train Show. One an Atlas B&M hopper that I thought would become a model for my contemporary fleet. To my surprise when I got home and checked Morning Sun's Northern New England Colour Guide there was a picture of a #5520-5545 series car in a Rutland Ry. train in Bellows Falls during the spring of 1956. These cars could be found loaded with sugar, grain and abrasive materials.

What I did...
I decided  to try a Mont Switzer trick found in a 2009 MR issue. Mont got the idea to use real cement from Lance Mindheim. He used cement powder on the roof of his car. I did not have any cement but did have a lot of limestone dust that could work well. Limestone being an ingredient in cement. Some Floquil flat finish is brushed around the roof hatches then a small scoop of dust is dropped on the hatch and brushed onto the flat finish. I let it dry for 5-10 minutes then brushed off what did not stick. The sides of the car got a good coating of light coloured Bragdon powders. I think this hopper car now has a very interesting look to it...George Dutka

My model next to a photo taken in 1956 in Bellows Falls, Vt.

Prior to weathering a plain ho-hum model.

Some lime stone dust added to the roof. Mont Switzer suggests using Bragdon grimy gray and ash to the sides of the car and light rust to the underside. Weathering powders can be used to change the colouring of the roof cement.

Not a bad looking car which took no time at all to get into service.

Friday 20 November 2015

Modeling a Cellar

A B&M train passes my cellar scene on the White River Division.
I got this idea from Frary and Hayden's C&DR Ry. years ago. A simple cellar can be used in any era. This week my Wordless Wednesday viewed the cellar in a 1950's scene, today we jump a few decades and it still fits in well.

I built this scene in the 1980's for my Hon30" module. Years later it was cut out and saved for future use once the module was discarded. I made this scene from the base of a small home. I added some beams which included some charred with a match, a door leaning inside, a boiler and shovel. Other additions are weeds, grass, a bird and bike. A simple project that can add more interest to your layout in no time at all...George Dutka

A look down into the cellar views an old boiler, a shove and some charred beams. It seems the weeds are taking over on one wall.
A bike is left behind leaning against the far wall.

Thursday 19 November 2015

October Railfan Trip - Part 4

Upon arrival at Cumberland WM 734 was coupled to her train and the crew was taking water. 501 was a massive 2-8-0 with a very large tender used in the coal regions on the WM.

Chasing Steam In Don Janes

     Sat. Oct.10 was the day that I was most looking forward to on this October railfan trip.  We would be heading to Cumberland, Maryland to photograph Western Maryland Scenic RR steam locomotive 734, an ex Western Maryland 2-8-0.  The WMSRR runs over a portion of the old Cumberland to Pittsburgh WM mainline to the town of Frostburg, the rest of the line being torn up years ago. WM  734 would be running from Cumberland to Frostburg on her last trip of the season and after that would be in the shop for quite some time for a major overhaul.  We has spent the first part of the morning taking photos at the Foley Overlook on the CSX Keystone Line (with a lot more success than we had two days earlier) and then headed to Cumberland to see 734 at the depot before her departure.  The engine was already coupled to the train when we arrived so we got a few shots of her before heading out to Helmstetter's Curve where we would get out first shots of her in action.  The train was quite long and the platform was beginning to fill with people that were getting ready to board the train.
The crew was taking water and must have been discussing the day's trip.
A front view of 734 as she sat at the Cumberland station.
Among the crowd were a group of Mennonite people who were checking out 734 before boarding the train.
     Just as were heading back to the parking lot we heard a diesel horn and turned to see WM  501, a GP30 heading into the station with the train from an earlier run to Frostburg. This was a bonus as we weren't expecting to see this train.  It turned out that the steam train was so heavy that the 501 would be used as a pusher out of Cumberland.
WM 501 was just arriving as we headed to the parking lot. 
     Once the 501 passed we hopped into the car and headed out to Helmststter's Curve, just outside of Cumberland.  I found a spot on a hill in a cemetery and marked my ground and waited for 734 to arrive.  Finally the distinct barking exhaust of a hard working steam locomotive filled the air and then a plume of smoke over the trees announced 734's arrival.  Considering the grade and size of the train she was really moving along.  The weather was perfect and the fall colours were about at their peak.  After firing off about 20 shots we headed to Frostburg to catch 723 at the depot.
WM 723 stormed past my spot as she rounded Helmstetter's Curve
As you can see the train was quite long and GP30 #501 was on the rear pushing hard.
Two young ladies stopped to watch WM 734 thunder past on the beautiful October afternoon.
Upon arrival at Frostburg we scouted out the station for a good photo location.  To my surprise there were very few photographers around waiting for the train and we found an excellent spot just before the depot.  The lighting was perfect and nobody to get in our way.  A photographer's dream.  Once the train stopped and detrained passengers it was chaos.  Hundreds of sightseers headed for downtown during their 2 hour layover.  At the other end of the station 734 uncoupled from her train and headed for the turntable.  Once turned she headed back to the other end, out of sight for photographs.  It was a great time chasing the steam train but there was lots of sunshine and daylight left so we headed back to Mance Post Office for one final photo session there
Lots of people stuck around the station to watch 734 take a spin on the turntable.  This photo was taken from a high stairway overlooking the turntable.

Monday 16 November 2015

Cleaning the Layout

My makeup brush is put to work once again this fall while the vacuum is pulling away more than 6 months of dust.
We are home from the Florida Keys and after getting the kitchen sink installed Saturday I still had enough time and energy to get the layout cleaned. Not having trains rolling for now over six months required a good once over of the tracks with the bright boy. One of the benefit of a smaller layout is this all can be done in short order. I begin by running the vacuum over the tracks while using a big make-up brush, dusingt off the rooftops and details that have attracted dust in the time I was  away from the layout. All my contemporary equipment is now stored till next summer. This week the 1950's come out of storage once again...more modeling posts to follow this week...George Dutka

Normally one needs one hand free when taking a selfie to handle the camera. Here I am taking a selfie while both hands are full...tripods sure come in handy.

Sunday 15 November 2015

Dorchester, Ont.

On my way home I was taking the back roads the other weekend and came across this new sign next to the CN tracks as I entered Dorchester. It displayed the long gone station. A really nice exposure to the towns railway heritage. There also is a really nice small feed mill that is really quite modelable in town which we will cover at a later date....George Dutka

Notice the photo-shopping of the Dorchester sign over the telegraph pole. 

Saturday 14 November 2015

NH Passenger Equipment

Dave Bachand's NH display at this years RPM meet Collinsville, Ct.
At this spring's Collinsville RPM meet Dave Bachand displayed the RPM 2014 hands-on project that he completed. It looked really good so I took some photos of the model and data sheets he displayed for a future potential project. One begins with a Walthers Trainline heavyweight RPO, Bethlehem Car Works ends and details, underbody brake details from NHRTA kit No. 14 and Scalecoat II paint and Microscale decals...George Dutka

The prototype.

Friday 13 November 2015

Flea Market Finds - Part 3

 DTI 26300 is wending its way towards White River Junction yard.
Commentary by Peter Mumby.............Photos by George Dutka

To wrap up this mini series dealing with acquisitions at the recent Woodstock show, I'll show you a nicely weathered model of a DTI auto parts boxcar.  It doesn't exactly fit with the era of the other cars mentioned, but it is a nice model in its own right.  It is the work of Sarnia, Ontario custom detailer, Jim Sloan.

The arrival of this big car at the WRJ yard will certainly have the local yardmaster scratching his head.  It must have been seriously misdirected!  Probably some pencil pusher up in Michigan asleep at the switch..................In a later post, maybe we can get George to share some similar real life tales of the rails!

Jim's car nicely complements my collection of 86' DTI auto parts boxcars. Peter Mumby took this photo.