The modelling article on the RailBox XAF10 class cars have been updated. There is new content and the third step of the rebuild article promised some time ago. There’s more information below.
My last update on this project covered the addition of a short history of the class. This time we’re getting into the meat of the project.
This new page covers the dangly bits between the frame and the rails – brake rigging. This is a task focused modelling article on how to simulate the brake rigging on the model without going over the top. Thanks go out to Tony Thompson whose original post on his blog got me started on this particularly enjoyable journey. (There’s a link from the new page to Tony’s original blog post.)
Throughout the series I’ll be aiming to complete the entire project section within an hour (between getting home and dinner for example) and at the end of it have a model that you can be proud of. Here’s what I mean using before and after photos:
Image 1: The basic Athearn BB kit sans brake rigging
Image 2: Same kit (undec) with brake rigging – a subtle difference but well worth the effort
You can head direct to the page by clicking this link, or head over to the project home page clicking this link. I hope that you enjoy this new part of the project. Like, subscribe and follow to keep up to date with all the new content here on Andrew’s Trains.
It’s been a while since my last post and that is thankfully due to being fully employed for the first time in two and a half years. A full-time job is a very satisfying thing. But I digress.
As I wrote in my March 6th post I’ve worked up another idea for the Glendale Freight layout. Let me say from the outset, that this is not one of my better ideas; especially after seeing Bruce Petty’s original layout. There’s merit in the ideas expressed in the design certainly – it just doesn’t have that vibe going on as Bruce’s layout does in spades. Before I go on to tear my work apart let’s take a look at a 1/12th scale model and why I find them so useful for designing a layout.
Landforms going in
Good old pegs used as clamps to help hold the foam while the glue dries
An overview of the layout design
A view down the layout
A view of the freight station area
The street scape near the freight station
Looking up the main street to the grade crossing
A slightly higher view of the station area
So what’s wrong with this layout idea?
Firstly the central theme of the design is not the freight station, it is the entrance from staging onto the layout.
I wanted to have the train enter through a portal of buildings, cross the street and then go about its business. It’s a pretty skimpy idea right? There’s no meat on the bones though.
Why this means to enter onto the layout instead of some other way? Is there some missing story about this means of entrance; did the city grow up around the freight station for example? But isn’t this supposed to be Glendale CA, right? Well, is it?
The layout is overall 8 feet long (2400mm) and each square is 12 x 12 inches (300 x 300 mm). It is 2 feet (600mm) wide. And it’s very linear.
So what would I do different now that I’ve built this mini layout?
Angle the entrance onto the layout,
Angle the buildings and the street to the long axis of the layout,
Cluster the switches near the end of the run around, and finally
I’d make a transition between the industrial area on ‘main street’ at the entrance end and the other end of the layout – making it more suburban
And having had a while to think on how I’d make those changes here’s a rough drawing of the layout that ‘could’ spring from this thought experiment.
This design has gravitas. It is the last bastion of railroading in the inner city, and the edge of the suburbs. Sure there are some strange curves, and I’d rework the industry lead and the industry back wall too. But it is much more interesting and tells much more of a story than the first layout.
This layout could be setup as is with the industries, it could be modified for a single industry layout (say an industrial workplace such as a foundry), or it could be something that I’ve not considered and that you already have swimming around in that pool of ideas in your head. As an aside, I videoed the first layout build process. If interested in seeing that video let me know in the comments and I’ll post it here over the next week or so.
Small layouts are my thing. Like most modellers in Australia space here is at a premium. So a small space layout, offering lots of operating potential, is the way to go.
Recently a long time model railroad friend Shortliner Jack shot me several links over to look at. We’ll be coming back to look closely at those this month. For right now though let’s take a look at a downloadable and one of Shortliner’s links.
Presented back in 2015 at the NMRA’s Thoroughbred Limited 2015 MCR Convention in Kentucky I felt that this download (in PDF format) provides a great overview of small layouts and a bit of learning about the why and how along the way.
The details shown on the Inglenook drawing on page 4 are wrong (you can find out more about Inglenooks in this post); besides that however there are some exceptional small layout designs that should inspire the modeller in you to get out there and make something.
This is the site that Shortliner Jack pointed me to as a source for his next layout inspiration. Being in the far north of Scotland, buried in snow for 9/10ths of the year, and surrounded by only boxes of Whisky for company he has a lot of time to work on layouts. One layout in Proto48 caught his eye specifically:
There are so many more designs in this thread large and small that you’ll spend several hours looking through and pondering them all. Great ideas and thanks to Robert Chant for sharing his design on the forum.
This section is where I’ll be posting well thought out designs that I can’t be fussed putting into the various railway CAD programs.
Each is at the concept stage and I’ll provide an overview of the location, industries and an operating scheme for these small layouts. The first layout so covered is on the Vinson Lead in Austin, Texas.
If you’ve a moment head on over to ‘The Vinson Lead – small and simple V 1.0‘ and see if this fits your bill for a great little model layout. There’ll be more to come as I now have a new scanner (yippee!).
Focused primarily on NSW railways in the years between 1986 and 1989 Dean’s work is very skilful. I showed a teaser image at the end of my post from September 09 this year of one of his 46 class electric locos. Got some nice feedback from that and having had the time to look over Dean’s other posts wanted to share his work.
There are not a lot of ‘instructions’ regarding his weathering technique which is a shame. However, Dean’s results speak for themselves. About the best blog post for understanding Dean’s full weathering process is from 24 October 2013 and titled ‘On Track models NHEF Hopper – weathering tips‘.
Apart from being a very good modeller and weathering artist, Dean is also a manufacturer and contract weatherer. Have a look at his Facebook page for more information and for lots of model photos of his work.
It’s been a busy month here at the HVL. Unfortunately much of it focused on the business of making a living and not making trains. A necessary evil, I am sure that this too shall pass. Now off to the races.
Well the modelling illustrated in these videos is all about scrap.
One of the industries I’ve considered for my new (home) layout was a small scrap dealer. On the layout extension that industry will I hope get a run. On the main layout at the moment there is simply not the space needed to make even a small one. Thankfully ChessieFan2 has done almost all the hard work for me by producing two videos that take you through the stages of building the industry. Additionally he has made another video where he discusses making loads for your scrap gondolas too. Enjoy.
Site 1: Modeling a Scrap Yard – Part 1
Site 2: Modeling a Scrap Yard – Part 2
Site 3: Creating scrap loads for your gondolas
Watch this video through until 14:57. Beyond is talk about the layout in general.
This will provide a Work-in-Progress report of what’s happening in the layout build process. For now there’s a front page. It provides my overall thoughts and a photo showing the proposed design (already laid out in track).
As I stated on the page there’ll be more coming in the future including:
Operations design, and
A session report or two
Looking forward to getting this underway this month.
It’s all operations Saturday, thanks to Martin Hogg, the owner and operator of Brett.
Site 1: Brett – a full operating session video
Martin Hogg’s released a new video (Brett’s been featured recently on the blog).
This time you get to see a full operating session from start to finish.
This video shows just how much enjoyment you can derive from switching on a relatively small layout with a reasonably simple track plan.
I’m guessing the operating session lasted around 25 – 30 minutes from start to finish. As soon as I get some feedback from Martin I’ll update this post and let you know for sure.
Good work that man! On you Martin.
I talked with Martin Hogg today and he confirmed that the operating session takes about 25 minutes (although he says its heard to be sure as he was busy phaffing around with the camera to be sure). He’ll be running another session to confirm that but I’m pretty sure that it’ll be right around the 25 minute mark, depending on the work to be done.