The year that was, the year coming

A very big thank you to all of you this year for reading and taking part at Andrew’s Trains. I’ve not been able to achieve all of my goals for the site, however I’m pleased to have achieved what I have. There’s only me at the other end of the keyboard, no production team, no writers, designers or PR people swilling champagne (thankfully). Just me.

I’ve already prioritised projects for 2017. Among them are:

  • A smaller HO scale layout (for use inside the house and on the Australian exhibition circuit
  • A re-purposing of the 3 4′ x 2′ boards in the garage to an O scale layout specifically for exhibition (and the occasional playing session at home when the weather is nice, and
  • Completion of all the outstanding model building articles

None of these are in any specific order, they are on my hit list.

It’s been a good year

It’s been a good year for me on Andrew’s Trains. I’ve managed to more than double visitor numbers and page views. And that is very pleasing. While the year’s final numbers are not in, just yet, I’ve already reached my personal goals for this site in 2016 calendar year.

What I’d like to focus on during 2017

I have some woodworking projects to complete this year. I need to finish the design of my exhibition saw-horse stands and make a couple of test units to prove the concept. Then there’ll be more wood working for the book shelves in the house where the new HO scale layout will live inside the house (where it’s warm, and nice during Ballarat winters). And from where I can run my fun sessions with the family when we feel the mood take us.

Track laying in O scale will be the next thing to learn. It’s something that I’ve wanted to learn for a very long time. Now I’m finally brave enough to give this a go.

Finally, all the best to you for the year ahead. I hope that you have an enjoyable, fulfilling and worthwhile year. I’m aiming to live the hell out of 2017. See you their next year.


Site update – December 12, 2016 – Weathering page additions

I’ve had a lot of fun weathering cars this month. I’ve photographed as I’ve gone along and added pages for diesel era weathering of freight cars. This is because I do not model the steam era. There’ll be additional content uploaded as I go through the month. In addition I’ll be making videos for all parts of the process on the next piece of work using the multi-media weathering techniques outlined.

To get started head up to the menu and look for Modelling Articles > Weathering > Multi-Media Weathering. There are two pages completed and these are the:

I hope you enjoy the articles. If you have any questions post a comment on the page. I’ll get back in touch with you pronto.

Site seeing – December 7 2016 – Aussie Streamliners in Action

Goulburn NSW, once a major service centre for trains on the main southern line into and out of Victoria, played host to another type of rail event in early October: Streamliners 2016.


Image courtesy John C Benson

It was a big deal with a whole gaggle of locomotives coming in from all over Australia to celebrate 65 years of active service of the Streamliners on Australia rails. You can also visit the Facebook page for more images and information. What happened after the event though is just as important.

On December 2 this year Southern Shorthaul Railroad train 4578S departed Northern Power Station at Port Augusta South Australia heading for New South Wales. Consisting of 90 empty hoppers formerly used on the Leigh Creek coal train, it was the second of two transfers. Hauling the train were five of the Streamliners from Goulburn (all operated by Southern Shorthaul Railroad:

  • B61 ‘Bernie Baker’,
  • S317,
  • GM27,
  • GM10, and
  • S302.

This video has some great vision and sound of the train departing the power station, being passed by several other trains before approaching and then crossing Mambray Creek. The last scene, between Gladstone and Caltowie, shows the train struggling on the 1 in 80 (1.25%) grade accompanied by the sounds of locos working hard and doing what they’ve done (in regular revenue service) for just on 65 years. Enjoy!

Late Addition: Need more Streamliner love? Follow this link to a YouTube search page for the event. Lots of vision there!

Site update: 02 December – More weathering photos

I’ve completed the remaining weathering of the body of the 40 foot Hi-Cube. There may be one or two more minor tweaks that I’ll make to get that just right look, overall I am very happy with this cars look. As an experiment using multiple techniques that I’ve not used altogether before I’m very happy and will try this next on a HO scale car. Where are we up to?

Flash on showing most of the car completed
Flash on showing most of the car completed

The second round of body and roof weathering has gone on. Keeping in mind that this car ran mostly in the dryer states and most of that in Texas in my modelling location there is a preponderance of dust and rust and not a lot of rain weathering. I believe that I have another of these cars in my O scale stash and will document the weathering as I go in the next week for all of you.

Interior shot showing the walls and weahtering
Interior shot showing the walls and weathering

I am particularly pleased with the internal look of the car. I hand painted the interior since I wanted a little tooth on the interior of the car, adding some Acrylic Painting Medium to the cheapo acrylic paint to thin and help it settle.

Close up of the wall and floor weathering
Close up of the wall and floor weathering

Minor touch ups to the door openings remain, to add the dings and rusting, prevalent around boxcar doors. Overall I’m pretty happy with the outcome. There are still the trucks to do, but we’re getting close. More again soon.