Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Status due to Storm

It appears that the storm has taken Railline forum off line.  This is resulting in pictures not displaying.  We will update more as soon as possible.

Our prayers go out to all affected by by the Storm.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Thursday Update - 2

Thursday Update - 2

Thursday night spent more time on the 180 degree Deck 2 turn. Added the sculpt-a-mold base and castings. Using molding plaster this time and it is a different bird than dental plaster. Made one gosh-awful mess miss timing the application of the mold and got plaster everywhere: on rocks, dirt, and rail. Now I know why your cover the rail.

Here is the rock work on the first downgrade part of the curve. Base is sculpt-a-mold and then molding plaster for the rocks.

This is the second curve. Had issues with overlapping 2nd casting, several part broke off leaving some fill-in work.

Elk's Creek getting really close.

Picture of the almost finished stain. Next will be adding dirt and rock fall. Then some vegetation. Looking at my Colorado pictures, lots of plants grew on any ledge in the rock.

New molding plaster castings on back side of deck 2. Initial coloring begins with raw sienna. The reddish color very prevalent in Clear Creek Canyon. The molding plaster seems to take stain more readily than dental stone.

That's it for this week, hope to post again Sunday or Monday.

Thanks Cameron

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thursday Update - Part 1

Thursday Update - Part 1

Finally got some better pictures to upload.

Thanks for everyone's advice both here and on the HON3Chat Group. Tried to take that and incorporate it into what I'm casting and staining. Also, used up the 50 lbs of Dental Plaster, have not found a local supplier, so switched to molding plaster as someone on HON3Chat suggested. I tried plaster like you get at Walmart and it turns grey and has a texture I don't care for.

There are some Monday night pictures above, you can refer to them to compare. Below show gradual results of adding more stain. Les made a good case for building up slowly and checking results. I was also coached by one of my mentors (Barkeep over on HON3Chat) to refer to my pictures taken in August to match color. One thing I noticed is the lighting in the photo's varies dramatically. The week we spent varied from full sun, to overcast to medium rain. So rock colors vary widely.

Elks Creek, rocks still a little shiny from stain. Looking upgrade to Forks Creek.

Close up of rock work. Using darker raw umber to add definition and try to recreate the beautiful canyon walls in Clear Creek Canyon.

Looking back downgrade from Forks Creek. The color is more to my liking, but I like real deep saturation, You can make out lines where either fill-in plaster or sculpt-a-mold took stain a lot less than original plaster. Will try to address this with a less diluted stain.

This is Forks Creek Approaching eating house and station. The temporary bridge is removed to protect it. Replacing it with a Campbell or scratch-built Truss Bridge.

More of a close up. The darker raw umber over raw sienna seems to work better than starting with darker. Care must be taken, if you get too dark, it is a bear to lighten.

Please comment, is it getting close? I went back and made a strong wash of raw Sienna and raw umber and used those to stain places where stain was not taking well, almost like diluted paint. Also covered area above rock castings, they will be mostly hidden so did not want to spend a lot of time and $ on rock castings.

Advice and comments welcome.

Thanks Cameron

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Rock Work Monday

Rock Work Monday

Went out Monday evening for a few hours (needed stress relief) and put in more rock work. Finished up my 50 lbs of Dental Plaster so next I will try molding plaster.

Worked on a couple of more pieces of Fasica including the deck 2 180 turn. Lined it up with Deck 1 to make it look nicer.

Decided to try a different approach on staining the plaster. This time made it stronger stain and put in 2 spray bottles, one for each color. Reversed the order, sprayed raw sienna first, then sprayed on raw umber.

This is the brush stain from last week.

This is the sprayed. Needs darkening but I think it looks better. still have areas where stain not taking well, need to figure that out, or hide with rock, dirt or plants.

This is a view looking upgrade towards Forks Creek.

This is looking downgrade, you can see where the brush stained meets the spray stained rock. Also the new fascia is waiting to be cut. Wanted to work out the foreground rock wall first before cutting.

Had my wife look at it and she thought the spray section looked better.

Any thoughts? Is the spray portion working?

Thanks Cameron

Monday, October 22, 2012

Monday Update

Only had about 4 hours to work on train, had a funeral to officiate in the afternoon. Getting up so early on a Sunday was rough, the sacrifices we make for our trains (LOL).

Good day even though short. Focused on a small list of tasks: Fascia and Rocks.

Deck 1 Middle Peninsula front side going upgrade towards Beaver Brook. All castings in, some fill-in work still to be done, then will begin staining. I also worked on the Fascia, more on that a little later.

Still deck 1 with run up to the previous picture. Used almost 50 lbs of dental plaster to date. Took Les's advice and mixed a little more water in plaster. This helped eliminate large air pockets making plaster too thin in a few places.

Deck 2 at Elks Creek. The dent in for the creek has rock added. More fill-in and then I'll add the (rule #1) waterfall and some trees on the ledge.

This shot shows fascia on deck 1 & 2. Deck 2 is still under construction but the effect is looking pretty good to me. Deck 1 is designed to view seated, deck 2 standing. The bullfrogs are mounted through the fascia and seem to work well.

Probably 50-60% done on rough rocks for the middle peninsula, lots still to go on the back side. All in all happy with progress. Plan is to do fill-in work tonight so it can dry and be ready to stain by the end of the week.

Train show this Sunday, signed up to work local NMRA booth but if they don't call me I may just stay home and get some serious work done on the layout.

Thanks Cameron

Friday, October 19, 2012

Tough Cuss Pass update

Tough Cuss Pass update

Well started adding rock work to tough cuss pass. I had been warned I might have made it too tight, and it maybe (ouch). Good news is I cna make a few cuts and recess the base back to allow for the rock work.

Found tough cuss pass when in colorado and it looked to be no more that 10ish feet wide so I know I want it to be as tight as possible.

This is an overview where you can see both sets or rock added. Still need to add inner left portion. Used the thinnest mold I have for the right wall.

Outer rock work (creek side), the flexible Bragdon mold is perfect as it conforms to shape I wanted.

This show clearance and where addition rock work needed. I maybe able to just add rock on ends if the middle not seen. Also need a little bit more on the right side to reach roadbed.

In retrospect - I probably should have done the rock on the right before building the rough scenery on the left. Another item to add to the oops category "live-and-learn".

Thanks Cameron

Friday Update 2

Friday Update 2

Here are pictures showing results of Thursday night work. Taken with my Blackberry camera phone, not as good as iphone camera but having issues with transmitting files on iphone.

Before Track image:

Section of track only spray painted brown.


This is stained with Dr. Ben's driftwood alcohol based stain (shake really well to use). Sorry slightly out of focus.

This is my first test with Instant Age from Dr Ben's added after driftwood stain. Make sure to let driftwood dry overnight for best results. I messed up first by applying too soon.


Friday Update

Friday Update

My lovely wife came out to help last night, along with both children. My daughter vacuumed the plaster chips and my son (13) did a great job cleaning up my major mess all over from plastering. Even got the carpet.

My wife used Dr. Ben's Driftwood stain to paint ties. This was after an experimental section passed approval using the Driftwood, followed by instant age stain. Pictures hopefully in a day or so.

Focused on more rock staining. What I an learning is the raw stain is less predictable than Les's method of sealing first. For areas with no Sculpt-a-mold the stain only seems to do well. For areas where used sculpt-a-mold the over stain probably needs to be a little less diluted. Still working this out.

I did get brave and decided to stain the outer rock on the new Deck 1 180 degree turn.

This is upgrade going into deck 1 180 turn. Raw plaster stained. You can see the variability you get with this method.

This is the downgrade coming out of deck 1 180.

Thanks Cameron

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sunday Update

Sunday Update

Only able to put in 4 hours as had to make a Michaels run to get paint for rocks, a leather punch to make stools (Thanks to some great interior work posted on the forum) and Caspia (plant material for trees, Les and others use to make really top notch foreground trees).

A little disjointed on efforts, did several tasks:
1. Added wiring run and 4 lights to the rest of Deck 2 (not the led section shown here).
2. Painted Part of Fascia.
3. Beveled the creek cut slope in many areas.
4. Put in plaster cloth on creek to seal.
5. Added more rock castings and began to blend.
6. Test painted / stained rock castings. Trying both Paul Scoles and Les's methods.
7. Most effort on the new rock walls that are at the front of the creek towards viewer.

Here are some pictures:

Rough base of foreground rock.

Here is the foreground rock work added. Goal is to make the rail line appear to be in a very narrow canyon (like real life) so train slips behind rocks as it progresses.

Looking downgrade on deck 1. This is Chimney Gulch passing siding. You can see creek bevel and sealed. Rocks being added.

Re-sized Tough Cuss Pass, removed about 1/3 of downstream section and shortened remaining. Will wrap rock casting around to give a prototype rock covering. This is where a on location visit really pays off, you can see prototype pictures on right I use to compare. It is still an little too large but will leave for now as it has effect desired.

This is the first of the 2 rock castings added for the foreground . These were a little difficult due to curve and being held only bay the cardboard webbing.

Second Rock casting on foreground.

Distance view showing effect of foreground.

Final picture of new rock work being added to Chimney Gulch.

Thanks Camron

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Late Week Update

Late Week Update

Got some new things in the works along with rock work. Began putting in Fascia. Needed to as I want mountains close to viewer to convey the tightness of Clear Creek Canyon.

Rock Work on Deck 1 180 degree turn. This is the area that is part of the exposed helix.

This is the 180 on Deck 2. Lots of fill in to do.

This is Deck 1 Bridge 613.

Huntsman roughed in, looking much better.

Amazing how much the fascia helps. I'll show some pictures of the rock work being installed it will make more sense then.

Will post more Monday.

Thanks Cameron

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Wednesday update.

Wednesday update.

Took day off yesterday and got a good 5-6 hours in on layout.

The rock mold learning curve continued. Adding some more photos to get any hints people have and also to share what I am learning hoping it saves someone else some time and money.

Also putting rough scenery for the redesigned Huntsman. Pulled out photos from Trip to Colorado to try and customize the scenes to the local.

Redesigned Huntsman:
Put in cardboard webbing, installed Plaster cloth and my wife coated with Sculp-a-mold.

Here is the Huntsman cut-out roughed in. Plenty of room for the Section-house and small mine. Next will add rocks and determine mine entrance.

Have this wild idea to make an animated ore car being pushed back and forth with light in mine. Not sure if practical, but an idea anyway. Some friends over at HON3chat are doing a lot of animation on Blackstone loco's.

More on molds:

The before, plain roughed in wall with cardboard, plaster cloth and sculpt-a-mold to add strength.

Hopefully this gives you an idea of the (hopefully) correct consistency of the plaster.

Pour in and spread with spatula, like making a cake.

Filled mold, smoothed out. no little lines and still too glossy so not set enough to put on layout.

Little hard to see, but as I lift the mold you can see not as glossy and little tiny stress fractures show starting to set. Still soft enough to mount without running out of the mold.

Lift with 2 hands and press in place on layout. Make sure you press all around mold to get a good bond to the rough surface. If not it will break off and your will have tones on little rocks (ask me how I know, have a full coffee can of broken fragments in 2 days work). Hold in place about 30-60 seconds depending on the mold size and how well you have managed to get it to adhere.

Mold is in-place. I set a timer for 3 minutes and it generally worked out well. Test a small corner to see it it comes away from the mold clean. All mine worked but one, the plaster separated with part staying on the mold.

The reason you want to pull off after 3-5 minutes is the Dental Plaster is still soft enough to easily carve. This makes blending to the next casting much easier.

The finished product.

Learned a lot so far. Blending takes some time, but with patience you can really make the two molds look like one rock face.

Tried filling gaps with some sculpt-a-mold. Looks really good, but may end up being an issue when staining the rock, we will see.

Thanks Cameron