Salmo Local leaving Kettle Falls yard

Salmo Local leaving Kettle Falls yard

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Progress Update #11

Well, I think its time to share some projects. Lately I've been busy bike racing and working at camps, but on the down time I've been able to tinker with a few locomotives. I had three Milwaukee Road units sitting in a drawer and were rarely used. So, instead of attempting to sell them, I thought, what the heck, I'll just paint them and see what happens! A common goal I have in modelling is to do projects as cheaply as possible. Being a high school student with many expensive hobbies, something has give. I really do enjoy being cheap (resourceful is a better word). There's more satisfaction from using something from the scrap box rather than a product that everyone else has on their layouts. All that to say, I really enjoyed trying to bring these engines to life with an average of $3 per engine (so far...).

After a little research I found the BN locomotives I wanted to transform these MILW Rd. units into. I looked at tons of photos (some were courtesy of Mike Bartenstein) and tried to find the same type of locos as my three models. The Athern RTR GP38-2 would become BN GP38-2 #2079, since I found some quality photos of it on the Nelson Line in the early 80's. The Athern Genesis F7 would become BN #720. I didn't find any photos of this engine on the Nelson Line, but I knew it ran on a branch line next to where my father grew up. He would have seen #720 pulling lumber from Wheyerhauser mill in Snoqualmie, WA. And... I don't know about the F7B yet. I'll probably just choose one of the last prototypes to have gotten scrapped.

The first step I did was obviously strip the paint. I then filed, puttied, and cleaned up all the bad or misplaced details. After that, I added new details, a.k.a lots of brass wire and styrene! The locos were then primed with some cheap grey rattle can primer. The paint I then used was also rattle can stuff(haven't yet gotten into the world of airbrushing). For the green I used some light green gloss Testors paint and a cheap flat black. Not ideal, but they turned out alright(Dullcoat and weathering can mask some imperfections!). I just had enough decals for #720. The F7A isn't complete, but it's pretty close. So, here's some photos of where I am at.

Another project I basically finished was applying scenery to the lift bridge. I wanted to add some interest without having the scenery obstructed when the gate was in the down position. I settled on modelling a road (Hyw. 395) and a small ranch scene. For the ranch scene I made a cattle guard from rail and a basic fence from thread and ties. For the grass I just used some 2mm static grass, but I'll add taller grass later. 

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Progress Update #10

Well, it has been about a year and a half since I updated this blog. Many of you probably thought I gave up on modeling or fell off the face of the earth. Thankfully neither of those happened. The truth is that life is busy and modeling isn't a priority. Model railroading is just a hobby. With all this to say, I haven't stopped making the short journey to the train room. Progress has occurred! I thought instead of writing a book for this post, I'll just share a ton of photos with a few captions. Hopefully you won't have to wait another year and a half to hear from me again!!

One large project that I finished was a staging yard and loop option. I originally designed the layout to be point to point(which is how it will remain for operations). However, a continuous running option seemed more and more necessary for many reasons. So, my dad and I built a drop bridge and new benchwork under section of the layout. Since this new route went under the layout, I took liberty to insert a staging yard. This staging yard will represent a fictitious branchline connecting the towns of Waneta, BC (Burlington Northern RR) with Trail, BC (Canadian Pacific RR). This gives another operational aspect to the layout and more car storage. Oh and also, my dad and I installed fascia around half of the layout and my mother made the skirting. Thanks Mom and Dad!!

Here's some pictures of the Pend Orielle River bridge I constructed from a Central Valley Truss kit and two Micro Engineering girder kits. This isn't completely prototypical, but it's the least I could do considering the fact that two curves had to start on either side of the bridge.

Now here's some photos of the rest of the layout....

Kettle Falls, WA

Evan / Marcus, WA (tracks running alongside the Columbia River). Still only needs about 500 trees!

Northport, WA

Waneta, BC (tracks on left of peninsula) and Fruitvale, BC (area on right). There will be a backdrop running down the middle of the peninsula.

Fruitvale, BC