Monday 26 February 2018

D&H in London, Ontario

March 23, 1979 London, Ontario...Gord Taylor photo, Peter Mumby collection.
Another of Gord Taylor's slides I scanned. This time it is a D&H unit on the shop track in CP's yard, London, Ontario...George Dutka

Sunday 25 February 2018

New Haven on the WRD

Set in the 1950's a Rutland Ry. engine will be switching shortly.
I finished the base made from Gatorfoam which was painted and weathered. I set it in place while adding a few details. Now I can place my station either way around...depending on the era...George Dutka

I have lifted up the station and will swing it around for a contemporary viewing.
Now it is the VTR and Green Mountain's turn to sort things out.

Saturday 24 February 2018

Snapshot - February 2018

Days are numbered for the old railfan bridge at East Deerfield, Ma. January 26, 2018.
This months snapshot are views of the so called railfan's bridge at East Deerfield, Ma. On my visit back in January there had been some grading done around the old bridge. I was told the bridge will be replaced sometime during 2018. The old bridge is being held up these day by a few extra bridge supports. I guess by my next visit things will be looking different...George Dutka

One can see how the bridge is shored up.

The grading towards the new bridge location.

Friday 23 February 2018

New Haven, Vermont - Rutland Ry. Station

The Rutland Ry station is almost done. The windows and doors are installed and walls are weathered a bit.
I finished the New Haven station a couple of months ago and thought I would share with you how it all worked out. I painted the windows, doors and underside of the roof a mix of two acrylic paints. The walls got sprayed with automotive red primer. All parts then got a coat of India ink alcohol mix. The windows are a poor fit and needed some filling with canopy cement. The concrete base and chimney cap are painted with Anita's acrylic rainy day captions tell more of the story...George Dutka

The underside of the roof is painted green along with doors and windows. It is a mix of these two colours. Nothing has to be exact as PanPastel green with blend it all together.

Anita's gray is used for the concrete stonework.  The ribbed roofing is flipped over so a smooth surface can be used for attaching shingles.

The station is complete except for the roofing and chimney. Flat finish coated glazing will be added.

The shingles are Minuteman Models stock Slade roofing with some highlighted with Floquil SP gray.

The sign is copied from one of my photos. The plywood is cut from leftover wood from my rcently completed ITLA kit.

The 1950's side of the station. There are a few things I did not add such as the end door that is seen in many photos from this era. The station did and still has an order board which protrudes out through the roof. I would have had to make a hole on each side and add an order board. Thinking that might have looked funny with two holes and order boards. So I just left it alone. The station also had some nice downspout angles that I may add at a later date.

The New Haven sign is a copy of the original from a 1950's photo.

Thursday 22 February 2018

Throwback Thursday: Via Rail Canada SD40-2 No. 757?

Via 757 and its train are parked at Porteau, BC, on July 05, 1989.
By Peter Mumby

An observer of current Via operations would note that the motive power roster is quite homogeneous.  If you're not looking at a GE P42DC, then it's  a rebuilt GMD F40PH-3.  However, over the course of Via's history, variety has definitely been the order of the day.

Via Rail Canada, Inc, was born on April 01, 1978.  Although combined passenger operations under the Via/CN banner had already been in effect for a short period, it was in 1978 that Via assumed ownership of its first locomotive and equipment fleet (all of the "previously enjoyed" variety.)  Since that day Via's collection of new or used motive power has come from a variety of builders.
- from Budd - various RDC units.
- from the consortium of MLW/United Aircraft of Canada - turbo train power cars.
- from EMD - 2 E8A and 4 SW1000 units.
- from GMD - a group of FP7A/F7B and FP9A/F9B units, along with the previously mentioned F40PH-2/F40PH-3 locomotives.
- from MLW - FPA-2u/FBP-2u and FPA-4/FBP-4 units, along with a single RS-10.
- from Bombardier - LRC-2 and LRC-3 locomotives
- from GE - the current P42DC units.

As far as I know, this listing is quite complete.  So what of the SD-40-2 mentioned in the header for this post?  Was it just some precursor to today's penchant for "fake news"?  There is a story behind the photo, and here follows my version of the tale.

On July 05, 1989 I was driving south along the Pacific coast towards Vancouver.  Rounding a corner at Porteau Cove I spotted this interesting train set parked on BC Rail trackage.  Since my habit is to "shoot first and ask questions later," I was quickly parked and the photo had been exposed.  It became obvious that this was indeed a BC Rail unit in disguise, and that the trailing equipment came from a variety of sources.  I later learned that these were props for a movie production, specifically The Narrow Margin, which featured Gene Hackman.  The trailing power car was formerly a BC Rail radio control unit, and originally a CP FM C-line B unit.  The cars were leased from Roaring Fork in Colorado.  The station marked "Monashee" in the background was one of two such props assembled for the movie.  The exact location of this station was at MP 26 of the Squamish Sub at the location the railway called Porteau.

So, there you have a description of the anomaly that was Via Rail 757.  And, of course, 2018 will mark Via's 40th anniversary, so let's keep an eye out to see if last year's Canada 150 banners are replaced with ones of the Via 40 variety.  Just one more thing - I never did get to see The Narrow Margin.  If you happen to notice it in the TV listings, maybe you could let me know!

Monday 19 February 2018


Nov. 12, 2013 Braintree, Vermont MP 50. Bill Brigham photo.
This is the Christmas card I got in 2013 from Bill Brigham which I thought had a typical Vermont view featuring the Vermonter...enjoy...George Dutka

Sunday 18 February 2018

A Structure Maybe Worth Modeling?

An old garage that might make a nice model. Brian Smith photo.
 Brian Smith sent along these photos he took in Colborne, Ontario. This structure sure looks like something one would add to a layout...George Dutka

A brick chimney and an interesting finish to the walls of the main building.

Some ghosting of an old sign is seen out front.

What's in the Box - No. 29

All the material is laid out for inspection. I find the instructions minimal and the printing a bit small for my old eyes.
N Scale Architect Conway roundhouse kit is a structure I am building for my friend Gary Pembleton. This will be my third N Scale Architect kit I have worked on. The last one worked on by Peter and I was very trying as it was very hard to cut through the material and remove from the sheeting. This kit appears to be the same. The other big problem is the walls are warped and needs a lot of bracing. Will see how it goes. I have just finished an O scale gas station and now am working on this N scale kit...thinking I should have done the N scale kit first...George Dutka

Some of the laser cut sheeting is really hard to cut though and I am thinking I will be using a lot of blades. This particular sheet is not bad to cut through. It is all the trim required.

The wall, door and support sheets are the really tough lumber.

The two part base is glued together and will be painted shortly. The end wall needs a lot of bracing to get the warps out as seen in the photo. No bracing is included.
Two views of a completed kit on display this year at Springfield.

Saturday 17 February 2018

At the Bar Mills Clinic Booth - Springfield 2018

Jack Ellis built this water tank using individual stones he cast and cut to size. I thought this structure looked very realistic.
At Springfield I spent sometime sitting in at the Bar Mills clinic booth resting my feet and listening to what Jack Ellis had to say regarding structure construction. One can learn a lot even when a clinic is not happening. On my second sit down Jack was between clinics and showed us in the front row some of the structures and materials he uses to come up with his fine models. I took a few photos that I thought might be of interest. I kind of wished I took a longer rest break...George Dutka

The Bar Mills clinic table with many of Jack Ellis's projects.

Here is a great idea for a seaside building. When getting down to the lower rows Jack just glued on individual shingles in place giving the wall a really weather worn look.

This is aluminum duck tape that was applied to some roofing. A really neat can find this at the dollar store.
Here we see the aluminum duck tape on a finished structure.

Friday 16 February 2018

February Update

ONR 1951...supper tonight?
It is mid winter and most of my time, when home is spent downstairs working on projects I have wanted to do for sometime now. I have an O scale service station that has been awaiting my attention for a few years now...actually purchased it at Springfield 4 years ago. I also came across some photo of the CNR school car that I posted about this past summer. They are from a tiny siding up north during the winter months. I also have some ONR photos to share.

Although I have been busy I have not done much to the layout other than clean track from time to time and run the occasional train or consist. If you are an N scale modeler check out the March RMC issue. I am just beginning a N scale kit for my friend Gary, the Conway roundhouse. Watch for a What's in the box shortly.

Peter Mumby and I loaded up enough photos into the computer for a couple months worth of Throwback Thursdays. As Peter has time he will be filling in Thursday posts till possibly the Spring.

On another note I became the modeling editor for the CVRHS Ambassador at the end of 2017, so I have been working on some CV modeling topics.

A time crunch is beginning while I work on getting my WRD scene-swapping clinic together for the upcoming Copetown RPM (early March)...George Dutka

FOS scale O scale kit nearing completion.
CNR school on wheels, 1954.

Thursday 15 February 2018

Throwback Thursday - Modelling the Mundane

CP 3114 leads 8237, 8234, and 3111 across the North School Road level crossing on the July 23, 2007 version of the Nephton road switcher.  In tow are empty covered hoppers destined for Indusmin plants at Nephton and Blue Mountain.
By Peter Mumby

Railfans are often attracted to equipment that is flashy or unusual.  Prototype modellers, however, prefer to stick with motive power and rolling stock of the day-to-day variety, something which helps establish a place and time.  This photo of the northbound Nephton road switcher was lensed on July 23, 2007, but this same picture could have been taken on any other working day that summer (or in the several years bracketing this date.)  The job of this train is to haul empties north to the Indusmin plants at Nephton and Blue Mountain, and loads south to Havelock for furtherance to Agincourt yard in Toronto.  Typical head end power for this era was a pair of 8200-series GP9s between a pair of 3100-series GP38-2s.  These units would often remain together for weeks or months at a time, so potential modellers wouldn't have to break the bank acquiring a huge variety of locomotives.    Behind the power is a group of National Steel Car-built 4850-5200 cubic foot capacity cars in the Soo 115000-118000 number series.  These covered hoppers had been prominent in this service since the late 1990s, and would be signature models on any representational layout.

Jump back to 1990 and the same train would have featured locomotives from Montreal Locomotive Works, a mix of 1800-series RS-18s and 4200-series C-424s.  There tended to be quite a bit of rotation among the units used, so this era might be a more expensive proposition for the modeller.  Much of the train would have been made up of Canadian-built 3800 cubic foot cylindrical hoppers in the black CP Rail scheme or in a grey colour with a red "Indusmin" logo.  These latter cars wore NCHX, NAHX, or UNPX reporting marks.  The recent release from Rapido Scale Trains is a model of this car type, although the Indusmin scheme is conspicuous in its absence.  Could we hope for its inclusion in a subsequent release?

We might now consider fast forwarding to 2015.  By now the GP9s had joined the RS18s and 424s in retirement.  A typical lash-up would feature a single GP38-2 bracketed by a pair of 2200-series Progress Rail GP20C-ECO units.  By now the trailing covered hoppers were typified by shorter high capacity two-bay cars with reporting marks such as GACX and CEFX.

So, what is "typical" depends very much on the era the modeller chooses to emulate.  This is not to imply that "unusual" equipment never showed up on the Nephton road switcher.  There were times when leased GP40s and even one of CP's short-lived Gensets showed up in this service, but this was definitely exceptional.  So, modellers, choose your era and your equipment, but give serious consideration to sticking with plain vanilla.

Wednesday 14 February 2018

Sidebar Blog Addition's - Conrail's Onondaga Cutoff

I spent today cleaning up the sidebar a bit. Peter Mumby mentioned there are a few blogs that have not posted in a I took some off leaving room for a few that I find interesting. First off I have added Dave Abeles blog to my list. If the name seems familiar it might be because he had a nice article published in the current Model Railroad Planning. I was impressed with his sidebar feature "Remote Dispatching", you might want to read up on this aspect of Dave's layout.

I have added two Canadian blogs to my lists. Confessions of a Train Geek which views many great photos posted by Steve Boyko and Rymal Station in HO Scale with more Canadian railroading postings by Peter MacCauley...George Dutka

Conrail's Onondaga Cutoff

Confessions of a Train Geek

Rymal Station in HO Scale

Wordless Wednesday No. 271

Tuesday 13 February 2018

CN Athearn Geep

Two old Athearn Geep's cross the White River. They look like they are moving along tell you the truth they are not doing all that well as they are both dummy units.
This CN model was in Peter Mumby's collection for a number of years (or decades) before he decided to thin his engine stock down a bit. Although I don't collect Athearn engines these days this engines detailing was nice and assembled well. I thought I could use this unit for experimenting with my haze paint and other acrylic weathering techniques since the price was below affordable...don't want to practice on my new Rapido engines. So what do you think?   George Dutka

What I used to weather this engine. The haze has been already applied.
The only detail I added was the step lights. Some gloss coat is applied to the fuel tank, and running boards were oil would have leaked from. The exhaust stacks got some oily soot down the sides.

Most of the details that originally was added are from Juneco.