Monday, June 22, 2015

Updates for June 2015

Due to continuing to work on home improvement projects, along with an emergency hot water heater replacement, not a lot of progress has been made on the layout lately.

Work on the 3D printed Cincinnati Car Co. 4000 series "Baldie" continues, with some light weathering being added and window glazing finally being installed (this car has to be the slowest build ever).

A one car Ravenswood shuttle at the Southport station.
Someone climbed on to a roof to capture this photo
I still need to add the under body details and grab irons to the model. But, its coming slowly along. 

At the Sheridan Road Station

A close up view
In other projects, I'm still working on the two new retail buildings for the layout. One is a two story commercial building with two storefronts and the other is a single story building with one large store. The construction of both buildings is documented in prior blog posts.

Now, however, I have a bit of a decision to make. The two story building was originally designed to be placed next to the Sheridan Road station. However, the single story building also fits nicely there. 

As originally planned.

Hmmm ... this fits also! Nicely switched.
What I like about the single story building is that it doesn't block the view of the station as much. But, the two story building blocks more of the curve. I'll have to think about this.

And one more photo as a two car Ravenswood train makes its way through the North Side.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Updates for the end of May, 2015

Due to the onset of summer, and some home improvement projects, not much progress has been made on the layout lately.

First, a photo of a Baldie leaving the Southport station:

Looks like I just missed the Loop bound train! Ugh!
The Sheridan Road curve building (well, more like Irving Park Road) has been partially painted.

I will most likely make this a grocery store. I may make it Spanish/Mexican or Polish oriented, to add more local flavor. This building is based loosely from a DSL Shops resin flat. That particular flat wouldn't have fit in this location so I decided to scratch build this version. Construction of this building is documented in prior blog posts. Paint is mostly rattle can primers.

One thing that I've never been satisfied with is O Scale terracotta wall caps. On my prior buildings I made castings from a section taken from an Ameritown wall. However, these were really just one sided and somewhat thin. Plus, I lost the master and my molds are starting to wear out.

So, I've decided to try and 3D print a set of modular wall caps and then make molds and castings. These are based loosely from some plans I found on the internet.

These will be geared for a wall thickness of about 1'3", which is a little thick. BUT ... I have decided I like the look of a beefier wall. On some models brick walls seem pretty thin. So, I've decided to see what these will look like as I've made some of my newer buildings with thicker walls. The wall thickness is apparent on the brick parapets. Too thin to me seems ... well, too thin. We shall see.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Track expansion is finally completed!

The new section of structure has had its track added and has been wired! The station still needs to be built and some minor details added, but trains can now run over the new structure!

A view down the tracks. The station, which will be an island type of platform, will
go in the space in between the tracks.
I have also completed an update video for May 2015:

And as a final photo, an odd assortment of cars and eras paid a visit at the Sheridan Road station. The guy waiting for his train doesn't know what to make of this assortment!

Hmmm... that's an odd assortment of options of travel!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

3D printed Baldie in paint

I've pretty much finished painting the 3D printed Baldie model. I still need to work on the interior and add the under body details, but the outside of the car is done.

I used True-Color paints: Reading green and a custom mix of white and yellow for the cream. Black accents are grimy black. The roof is primer grey.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The zombie slowly rises ... or, the 4000 is back in paint

Not a lot of progress, but one coat of "test" paint has been applied to the previously smashed Q-Car 4000 series body.

I call this a "test" paint scheme as I had to custom mix the cream color. So far, under a couple of different lighting conditions, I am happy with the progress. I wasn't sure as to how the cream would turn out, so I figured I could use the zombie car as a test. Worst case, I felt I could always strip the paint from the car.

The cream is Tru-Color white and Tru-Colo L&N Action Yellow (any normal yellow would do, I just had this kind. Eight drops of yellow per half jar of white ... or just until it looks "right" ... its a judgement call. The green is Tru-Color Reading Green and the roof is Rustoleum Dark Grey primer (I just like the grey).

The Q-Car plushie (sans trucks) matches up  well with the 3D printed Baldie. There are some minor differences, but the two car types were not identical.

I am leaning towards painting my entire 4000 series the green and cream paint scheme as I just think its a nicer color than the brown and orange. I will, however, do my two car Northwestern train in brown and orange. And, my one orphan prototype 1.0 Baldie with a plushie roof (a initial test of 3D printing with a few errors) will remain in brown and orange.

In other progress, the retail store for the Sheridan Road curve finally has back and side walls along with a roof.

This, along with my other structures currently in progress, will hopefully be finished in the near future!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Attempting to arise from the ashes ... or a zombie 4000 Plushie is hopefully reborn.

First off, I was able to obtain two new additions to the elevated fleet:

I was able to obtain a Q-Car Northwestern 280 motor and a 4000 series Plushie, both with Wagner power trucks. The Northwestern motor will be paired with the Northwestern trailer that I have while the Plushie will go into a 2 car all-Plushie train.

The other addition to the elevated fleet is what I am calling the 4000 zombie. This was a Q-Car Plushie that was given to me ... but with one small catch. The model had either been dropped (from a significant height) or stepped on / squashed.  When I received the model it was in three pieces: roof, one side, and one piece of the ends still attached to one side. It had been repaired at some point as both ends showed signs of breakage and having been squashed at some point as some pieces were missing or bent. It was also painted in the green and cream paint scheme.

Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures of the model in its original disassembled state.

But, I figured a free Plushie can't be turned away, so I figured in the Easter spirit I would try to resurrect the car.

The stripped shell. Lacquer thinner wouldn't touch the paint so Acetone was used.
Fortunately the acetone had no effect on the Q-Car glue joints. 

Evidence of the broken windows seen on the end.

Note the glue marks from the original repair.

The motorman's side window (next to the door) was skewed (evidence suggesting the model was either stepped on or had a large weight dropped on it) so I had to re-break this and attempt to reset it to a more vertical angle.

Once primed, the missing parts are more visible:

Missing window sash, door sash and top sashes to the end windows.
Also note the big crack in the window post. That is where I had to snap off
the post to set straighter.

The other end: more missing window sashes and heavy glue applications.

Using some styrene, I was able to recreate the missing parts and apply to filler to cover the gaps.

Sashes added and some gaps filled. The large crack looks better in person,
but I'll probably do another application of filler.

The other end, missing sashes added.

The rood was tweaked and a door broken.

I was also successful in drilling out the motorman's side window, which was very nerve racking as both sides were cracked and repaired near the bottom of this window. I thought the drilling and filing would re-break the ends, but I got lucky and was able to drill out the windows.

 Overall, I'm very happy with how this is turning out. I really thought the model was a lost cause. I didn't think it could be saved but I figured I had to try to make the best of it. This model will win no awards, but it has at least been saved to live another day. I may continue to fine tune the car or just let it be ... maybe it was in a wreck at some point? 

With these additions, I can muster a four car 4000 train ... if in theory only as this train certainly isn't going anywhere ...

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Almost ready for the paint shop

I started working on the Balide model again, and have finished the roof vents over the doors and re-applied the door drip guards:

While not 100% prototypical accurate, they get the job done. The vent is made of .010" styrene and the drip guards are .030" square styrene. Also note that the Sterns and Wards couplers have been attached as have the other larger rood vents. I've also filled the gaps in the ends with glazing compound.

Now that this is done, its pretty much ready to be sent off to the paint shop. And as luck has it, the weather has finally started warming up so may be able to paint in the garage soon! This particular car will be painted in the more modern CTA green and cream paint scheme.

In other developments, I've been making steady progress on the new commercial building.

The stone trim has been added to the front of the building. I like to paint and mortar the bricks before addling the trim as it makes for a neater installation.

The back of the building has also been painted and weathered at the same time. I may have overdone the weathering a bit on this side, but I wanted this to be rather grungy. It turned out well.

The windows have been set in the front:

And the stone trim has been added to the back of the building:

I also obtained at the Chicago O Scale March Meet a white/pot metal body of a North Shore coach.

Its currently sitting on shop trucks and I've started filling some of the imperfections with the casting with auto body glazing compound.

I will most likely convert this to a CA&E car as these were later lent (then sold) to the CA&E.

But .. question ... does anyone know who made these bodies? There are no markings so I was rather curious. I forgot to ask when I purchased the body.