Saturday, 21 December 2019

Narellan Exhibition Layout Update December

With no more Exhibitions for 2019, this means now that I will be fully committed in completing Narellan for it to be ready to hopefully appear at some Model Rail Exhibition for 2020.

It has been just around a year ago since I started construction of this layout and if it was not for all of the distraction that I had to deal with throughout the second part of this year, Im sure I would have had Narellan completed a few months ago. However, whilst I expect a bit of quiet time over the Christmas Break, Im hopeful to get Narellan completed. After that, the only items remaining is to get more Locomotives and Rolling stock prepared to ensure that there is a good reflection of the various trains that ran on the Camden Branch line. This will mean completing DCC Sound installations into Austrains 30 Class and IDR Models 70 Class locomotives. Weathering of the Locomotives and rolling stock. I also have some rolling stock kits to build, paint and weather.

Good thing is at this point of time I have a bear minimum fleet of Locomotives and Rolling Stock that are ready to run in the worst case.

Second and Final Attempt In Weathering the Office Hut
To close out one of my final line Side Structure Build, I stumble across a good colour Photo that was recently posted on one of the Facebook Groups that I follow of Narellan with the sun light beaming on the Office Hut that was next to the coal stage. Basically, whatever colour it was painted with, it was well disclosed under the dust.

This time round, I ended up using Tamiya Weathering Master powder which I found very effective in getting the desired result that I was after.

Office after been weathered by Tamiya Weathering powder

Landscaping Almost Completed
After being discharged from Hospital last month, the Doctor ordered that I was not to lift anything heavy up until Christmas, which meant I could not setup Narellan and finish off a few items on the layout to make it a bit more stable and add on a facia on the Pigeon box to make it a more presentable.

 The bare area that is in need of Landscaping

When I had got my energy back, I decided to start woking on the area where the coal stage will be based. I looking a several photos, I decided to make piles of coal along the line side. I was recently given some good Blue Foam which was easy to cut into shape to form a shape of a pile of coal. I ended up doing about 4 piles.

Foam that has been carved out to make the piles of coal

I then placed plaster cloth over the foam. And when the plaster cloth was set, I painted it and the surrounding area with black paint so that if there is any gaps in the once the coal was scattered it would not be that obvious.

Plaster cloth soaked and left to set 

Area where the coal is be placed painted black

Once the paint was dried, I brushed on some PVA glue (not watered down) and sprinkled coal on the area and just patted down the coal just to ensure if adhered to the glue. It is worth noting that from earlier experience with landscaping with coal, it is better to use non water down PVA Glue (or PVA glue straight from the bottle).

PVA Glue painted on the area of the black plaint where the coal is going be placed 

Coal sprinkled on the PVA glue and left to set

After around 24 hours after applying the coal, I went over the area with a vacuum cleaner and was pleasantly surprised that the bulk of the coal remained stuck on the layout.

The final area that needed landscaping I planned to have more as a dirt patch. For this I simply did a mix of 50% water and 50% PVA glue with a drop of detergent, which I applied onto the area final bare area of the layout. Once that was applied, I got a cup of dirt with an old stocking to sprinkle the dirt onto the PVA glue. This is a different method to what was done with the coal. But what I do find with dirt, it absorbs the watered down PVA in which allows it to better set the dirt onto the base board.

After the dirt was applied to the layout

Ground Lever Throws
Before going into my experience in constructing the Andlan Models Ground Leaver Throws. This was a new method of railway modelling for me as this is the first time building up an etched kit. I tried constructing my first one by sticking it together with super glue. However, it ended in a disastrous result and by no means blaming the kit here, I knew that the first one of these type of kits was not going to be completed looking perfect. Basically I was applying a little bit too much pressure when I was super gluing the top of the ground frame and it collapsed in a heap.

Result of my first attempt. My advise solder this kit together rather than super gluing it. 

However it ended up becoming a great learning experience where the second attempt I took the soldering method which I found to be not only easier to do than the super glue method, but I found that the model became way more robust via this method. In all, the bending into shape of the etched parts was mostly easy to do, just the the shaping of the top plate of the leaver frame was the slightly challenging part of this model. Rest is just taking your time to construct this model. The following Ground Throw was my second attempt which I think has so worked out well.

 Above photos show the above shows the steps that where taken to build up the Ground Lever Throw.

Next steps from here it add on the styrene for the concrete slab platform and painting.

My Final Note For This Year
I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a safe Holiday Session.
I would like to thanks those who have provided me with the feedback wether it was via this blog page or in person over this last year.

I would also like to spare a thought to those who follow my post, as I know there are a few out Thirlmere Buxton way and other areas of NSW that may have been impacted by the Bushfire activity over the last few weeks as well as those that are out there on a daily basis fighting the fires. Ensure you all stay safe out there.

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Wagga Model Rail Exhibition and N Scale Rolling Stock

First of all, my apologies for a bit of belated post, as last month I ended up in a Hospital visit for some surgery which took me out of business for a couple of weeks. Thinking I could do a few things such as writing blogs and planning out future model rail projects amounts other things, I found just the simple things were a struggle to do during this time. However, on a positive note, one main health issue is now fully resolved and I have just about fully recovered and now getting back into railway modelling activities.

On the first weekend of November, I went down to Wagga with a few model rail friends to Support Rob P on his first showing of his N scale Exhibition Layout of Gunning. On the lead up to the event I got my 42's numbered and weathered (refer to my last blog for the work spent on the 42's), along with some passenger rolling stock and a few of my other locos and rolling stock. It certainly ended up being a great weekend. But first, I will do a summary on my construction my N Scale carriages.

4206 passing through Gunning

N Scale Passenger Carriages Kit Construction
All of the Carriages are Peter Boormans kits and over the last few months I have been gradually working on building up these kits.

There is not an awful lot needed to put these kits together, but I found on only two occasions that I needed to file back a couple of chassis to allow the body of the carriage to fit. The rest of it was to paint, glaze the window and fit the bogies.

Basically, painting of these models I found not to be much of a difficult task, but involved certainly a lot of time and effort in masking up for the different colour schemes.

Masking up of the carriage to get the yellow lining

Some of the carriages got painted with a silver roof with the navy dressing (navy dressing painted in Humbrol Mid Stone 225) and the carriages painted with the darker roof where applied with Model Masters Flat Black with a bit of dusting with the airbrush with Humbrol German Grey leaving behind a nice finish. The main Body of each carriage was painted in Raileys Indian Red paint. I used a Model Masters Yellow paint for the yellow lining.

One of the completed paint jobs

Once the Decals were applied, I finished the task of painting by clear coating each model with Testors Dull Coat.

Glazing was done just with clear styrene sheets, cut into strips and stuck into the model with Micro Sol Krysal Clear.

For the toilet window. Painted them in Tamyia white paint

When installing the bogies, on the instructions of these Kits, it states which type of Micro Trains bogies with couplers to acquire (as these are not supplied with the kits). I found that the recommendations for the 6 wheel bogie carriages was good (Micro-Trains 1018 Bogies), but for the FS, BS and BSR carriages I found that the carriages had very noticeable gap between them. After consulting with a few other model N scale railway modellers, I was pointed to the solution which was to acquire Kato N scale 11-035 bogies, cut off the coupler shaft and install Micro-Trans N Scale Universal Body Mount Short Shank Couplers (1015). After following this advise this, this ended up to the solution that had the desirable result.

 One carrige in the back row has the Micro-Trains 1017 Coupler and bogie set. The remainder were fitted with the body mounted Mirco-Tains 1015 couplers with Kato N Scale 11-035 bogies.

Making the modifications by cutting off the coupler shaft on the Kato N Scale 11-035 bogies and removing the the tab that the wiring for lighting would connect too on the power pick up. Wheel with the power pickups were then reinstalled ready to be mounted on the carriages.

The Kato bogies ran with no issues at all when tested.

Wagga Model Train Exhibition
This year one of my Model Rail Friends Robert, decided to exhibited his N Scale layout of Gunning, in which Wagga Exhibition Coordinator accepted his expression of interest. Fortunately for me, I was able to get the time off from work to do a trip with Robert and other supporting model rail friends to assist with the transportation, setup and the running of Gunning at the model Rail Show.

We arrived at the venue late Friday afternoon after taking a long drive from Sydney to where we setup and tested the layout and ensured that it was operating as expected. 

Robs Gunning N Scale Layout setup ready to go for the Wagga Exhibition

From looking around at the other exhibitions, having layouts such as Binalong, Stockinbingal, Yandys plus a few others had this Country Model Rail event to be setup to put on a decent show.

As the show commenced from the Saturday morning, from the moment when we started to run trains, we ended being busy answering a lot of inquires and receiving positive comments about Robs Gunning Layout. 

One thing to note, most of the models that ran on Gunning where kits or scratched built, many of them scratched built by Rob which makes it unique to the fact that there are not that many Layouts that run scratch built prototypical Locomotives and Rolling Stock at this volume at Exhibitions, which has some how placed my effort with the 42's and carriages to shame in a way.

Unfortunately, I took more video than photos, so do not have much decent photos to show. Perhaps I need to think on to starting up an YouTube channel in the near future.

4206 In the Fiddle yard of Gunning with a Robs scratched built N Car set in the back ground

In the end it was a fantastic weekend in which I hope to get involved with in 2020. Certainly was great to meet up with those of you that follow my blog that attended the Exhibition. Certainly good to know that not only people read my blog but have found out some of you became aware of Wagga Model Rail Exhibition event from my previous blog. Also was great to catch up with my other model rail friends that attended this exhibition.

From here now, the focus will be to get my HO Layout of Narellan completed.