Washington Northern Logo

Washington Northern Logo

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

I'm Still Here!

Its been a LONG time since I posted. Usually in the warmer months I work a little bit here and there, but I am usually tied up with projects around the house. I also have been doing some work on another hobby of mine, model building. I am focused on WW2 history, specifically German Armor.

Just an update: All the track work is about 85% down. I am still kicking an idea around for another industry in the one area, but not 100% sure on what it is going to be. The trans-load building is finished and I just need to glue down the concrete pads and add a few more areas. I ballasted and did some minor scenery to the staging cassette. I figure this was a good way to get back into the groove of scenery. I am not happy with the Woodland Scenics ballast so I am going to start looking at some other options.

I also haven't been working too hard on the layout as my wife and I would like to move in the coming year or 2 (max). I don't want to overdue it and then have to sacrifice demoing things for moving. The way the layout is set up now, it shouldn't be an issue.

I hope to have a  few pictures in the future of some progress and maybe even an operating session.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Video of the Week

This week's video comes from Shannon Crabtree of the Virginia Midland. Shannon also has a blog. Link to the blog is located on the right side of my blog. Check it out and subscribe.

Shannon talks about train shows and some updates to his layout.


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Video of The Week

I am going to start a new segment in my blog dealing with videos found around the internet that I either have watched and used as a guide, or just find helpful for us in the modeling community. These will vary from Railfanning videos to How-To's and layout tours/updates.

First is a video from Dan at DansRailroad2011. I have seen many of his videos and I think they are great. They are long, average 15min, but he goes into detail explaining the model and what he has done with it.

In this video, Dan goes over fading down a LPG tank car. Its a very nice video and may help those who are getting into the whole weathering scene. Sit back and enjoy.

Don't forget to subscribe to his channel if you haven't already!

Have a great end to the weekend, and happy modeling!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Working on the Team Track/Transload Area

Today I pulled a project out hat I had been working on for quite some time. About a year ago I built a transload shed as I saw on an Atlas forum. First building I tried turned out terrible after i painted it. I tried again with some more Pikestuff kits I had. Turned out OK. I painted it and then weathered. The weathering was awful and the building looked out of place. So back to the drawing board.

After some more reading, and careful measuring and cutting and sanding, I came up with what is pictured below. The main body, door and garage doors are Pikestuff. The concrete base was made of strips from the Pikestuff kits. I painted them with a textured paint from Lowes. I then followed up with a primer gray to capture the cement/concrete look.

I still need to do some touch up painting around the base and add some detail parts.

Stairs are cast metal from a DPM kit and the railings are from a Walthers kit. I started to add the downspouts.

I will be adding another downspout for the other side and i will put a light fixture above the door. I plan on adding some decals and a light weathering job. I also have the industry name to put on the building as well.

Have a great rest of the weekend and happy modeling!

Some Motive Power

Looks like I intended to to a blog but never got around to it. I took photos of the MP15 I purchased. This was an undecorated unit with sound. I purchased it off of eBay. When I opened it up and began inspecting everything, I noticed that I was missing some handrails and grab irons. I checked Atlas' online store and determined that they did not have the parts I was looking for. Fearing they were out of stock, I contacted Atlas. They helped me out and mailed me all the parts I needed.

The new MP15 @ the transload facility.

Here she is all decaled. I still need to add the numbers to the cab and eventually the number boards. All decals are Mircoscale minus that Washington Northern Decals. I used various MP15 photos to get the accurate locations of the decals. You can't see it here, but I removed the stock figures and put a custom figure in. I ended up repainting the engineer's jacket to one a little modern. I used some lime green paint. I will try to get some close ups when it is all finished.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Its Been A LONG Time

Well it has been a long time since I did any modeling, let alone update this blog. I have a seen a few posts and videos from my fellow modelers and the modeling bug has bit me. SO today I started to clean up the work bench and get some things in place on the layout. Once i get a few things organized I think I will clean the track and ensure everything is working correctly. Stay tuned for some posts of some progress on some motive power, and getting some weathering done on some rolling stock.

Hope everyone is having a great summer!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Patched Out Power

Well it's been some time. Hoping to get back on track as work sometimes takes the front seat, as well as family. I was lucky enough to get some work done on some motive power. I scored a GP39-2 off eBay. It was an Atlas Trainman unit that had been weathered,and had Lok Sound decoder installed.

First thing I did was clean off the weathering. It wasn't very prototypical. I also removed the horn from the front and filled in the hole with some styrene rod.I touched up the area with some reefer orange paint. I then removed the factory BNSF lettering from the long hood. I then masked and airbrushed the reefer orange onto that area to finish the patch out. 

Next I added some BLMA RV AC units to the roof and relocated the horn. I had some of th BNSF Heritage Green, however it was not cooperating. I ended up painting a brass horn I had BN Cascade green to show the horn was replaced. I also added a small piece of metal rod between the AC units to represent an antenna as seen in the prototype photos. I also repainted the handrails yellow. Metal lift ringers were also added.

 I wasn't happy with the yellow handrails, so i reverted them back to white. I also touched up all the grab irons with white as well. I also removed the factory numbering on the unit. I kept the 2703 because of the number boards. I added some Gothic Numbers form a Microscale Industries sheet, and added the Washington Northern logos to the nose and below the numbers.

I'm currently in the process of updating all the warning and caution labels, and I will be adding some safety striping to the sill later. I also added some Details West MU receptacles with cable, Atlas Air Hoses and a Details West Plow to replace the Atlas one..

Below we have WN 2703 switching out the foods plant. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Building Cassettes

Well since space is somewhat limited in my basement, I wanted to be able to have somewhere for the trains to depart from to deliver their cargo to the appropriate destinations. So looking through some books I figured on building a cassette would be the best option. I build a smaller one before for this layout when it was in construction phases in another location. It wasn't too bad for my first attempt but I knew I could do better.

I did some looking around online through various blogs and articles. I also did some reading in some Model Railroad magazines, forums and even a book. Taking all this research in and it then dawned on me I should just get this over with. I had more than enough information, but just felt the need to drag my feet for some reason. The other day I buckled down and begun building the cassettes. I figured on two so I could shuffle them as needed.

What I ended up doing was getting a piece of lumber from Lowe's. Nothing fancy just a 1x6 piece of lumber. I took that and cut it into two 4 foot sections. I then took thinner wood to make a U shaped frame. I glued the wood together and put some foam from a 2x2 project board on top. Once the glue dried, I added a coating of brown latex paint.

My next step is to add some track, and probably a wye to maximize the real estate. I also am going to put some side on the cassette to prevent and derailments resulting in a loss of assets.


Basic wood framed base

Foam Added

Painted up!

Monday, January 4, 2016

"New" Power comes to the Aberdeen Shops

Well over the holidays I worked on finalizing some wiring, test ran a loco and worked on a few more things which you will see in upcoming blogs. I made some purchases on eBay. One of them was addressed in my last post, the 3D printed silos. The next was a GP 39-2 with LokSound decoder. The model is an Atlas Trainman, and it was weathered and had the BNSF Scheme. Sadly it wasn't my favorite scheme (The old BN theme), but alas the price was great, especially for a sound decoder installed.

The locomotive arrived the other day and I have a few plans for it. I plan to patch it out for the Washington Northern, and add some detail parts to it. The Atlas Trainman models aren't bad and I feel they are geared more toward those on a budget. But with a little extra money, and of course effort, you can turn a Trainman model into something very nice. A few years ago, Model Railroader did a nice article about detailing an Atlas Trainman model. That article was republished recently in the special issue put out in December about modeling modern era.

Stay tuned for some updates as I work to make this one of Washington Northern's patched units.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Adding to Industry

 Well I have been very busy over the holidays with work, family, travel and of course the layout. I took some time to do some more work on the food processing/bakery industry on my layout. I decided to add an unloading building where workers come to hook up to the tank cars and unload their cargo. I also bought a set of silos off eBay. The silos are not a kit, but they are 3D printed. Let me tell you they are pretty awesome. I am going to sand them down to a smooth surface and paint them, but until then they will remain gray.
 Next started the work on the unloading building. It is pretty simple. I cut two (2) pieces of corrugated metal from Evergreen and painted them blue, to match the man building. From there I added cut out some doors and and added some vents form some Pikestuff and Walthers kits. I put on some building safety signs from a Microscale kits and boom, mission complete!

After that, I mounted the completed front to a piece of 1/4" foam core board I purchased from AC Moore and placed it next to the industry. Making low relief building out of foam core and Evergreen sheets is a very inexpensive way to kitbash and add some variety to your layout!