Washington Northern Logo

Washington Northern Logo

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!