Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Nothin' but blue skies from now on.. - Irving Berlin

This week I found a way to get the rest of the vinyl flashing up without any help.  I found the bottom deck was easier to do since its lower.  I discovered a heavy duty staple gun I had bought awhile back (forgot I had it) and it was a better alternative to using the air stapler, whose staples were way to long and overkill for what I needed.

Later in the week I made a trip to Home Depot and picked up one quart of Behr Ocean Cruise Blue and two small samplers of Behr Brilliant White, both colors in flat finish.  I tested some backdrop painting on the 8' long top section just off the helix.  I applied full strength blue to the whole backdrop with one sponge brush, and went right back and put a big strip of white at the bottom with another.  I used a third wide sponge brush to blend the darker top with the white to make a lighter horizon.  It came out OK though not real even.  I actually think it looks a little like those clear days when you get those faint, wispy clouds (which I like a lot) so maybe it'll be OK.  If I like my results better on the next few sections I might go back and repaint it.

Top deck with blue sky while the bottom deck is next to get painted.

A closeup view.  Can you see the wispy clouds?  I meant to do that, really I did.  :p

After my last post, I was told about two more notable blogs to check out.  Fellow Ma & Pa Historical Society member (and the society's Time Table Magazine editor) Art Kuperstein is modeling the Ma & Pa in a slightly later era, and it's set mostly in the Maryland Division (where as I'm modeling a portion of the Pennsylvania Division).  Unfortunately Art's blog doesn't have a feed, so I had to add it to the links section instead of the blog roll.  


Another fairly new blog by noted NYO&W modeler Bill Schneider called Modeling the New York, Ontario & Western:


Many of you may know Bill from the many articles he's authored and from pictures of his beautiful layout.  You may also know Bill from his association with Rapido Trains and his former employer, Branchline Trains. 

Two more great reads, so check them out. :)


Friday, August 9, 2013

The 100th Post, and the Sheriff of Bloggingham Rides Again..

Hey!  I've reached post number 100!  Another milestone!  And what better way to celebrate than to clean up some of the dead/inactive blogs on my blog roll. ;)

First let me tell you the first time I announced I was doing this a few people took umbrage with me.  Like I actually have the ability to wipe blogs of the face of the world wide web!  My one buddy even went so far as to call me the Sheriff of Bloggingham.  LOL  Of course I have the ability to close down inactive blogs on the net.  And Al Gore is the father of the internet.  And I have a bridge for sale in Brooklyn...  What I can do though is not to promote them on my blog page.  So, without further ado...

Two blogs have gone beyond the 4 month mark so I will drop them in favor of some blogs that are pretty active, and that I've been enjoying reading lately.  

The Georgetown Branch seemed to die again with nothing posted in 7 months and The W & A Civil War Blog hit 5 months so.. Buh Bye..

You'll now find the following entertaining blogs:

Gene's P48 Blog- An interesting Proto 48 blog.

Trackside Scenery- Dave Frary's fun blog where you'll read mostly about trains and scenery, but sometimes Lobster Fishing and occasionally BBQ.  Always entertaining though.

Dan D. Sparks-  Dan D. Sparks has a fun and well laid out blog on his traction layout based on the San Diego Electric Railway in H.O. Scale.  If you've ever wondered what a Grand Union is or how one is built, check out Dan's Blog.

JLandT Railroad-  The last blog on my recommended list is the JL and T Railroad blog.  It's a neat layout based on one of my other favorite northeastern RR's, The Reading.

There you go!  Lost 2 but I added 4!  :p

Update: For those of you who have been following along for awhile:  Jim Lincoln's blog still proclaims he hasn't died, though that was posted over 1 1/2 years ago.  I'm happy to report I saw Jim a week ago at an op session, and he's very much alive. ;)

Oh and Commodore.. Three months and counting..

Can you say embargo?  :p

Sunday, August 4, 2013

I see a red door and I want it painted black.. - Rolling Stones

Part of what I've envisioned from the very start in planning and building my layout was to help a visitor get the feel for some of the nuances of the Maryland & Pennsylvania Railroad.  Black and yellow/gold have always been associated with the Ma & Pa. thus the big reason I chose black for the fascia and yellow for the signage.  Bellow are the results of the painting effort.  I think it turned out great at first glance and I will go back in a day or two and inspect what I've done and see if I still like it as much as I do now.

I temporarily put up the York sign to see how it looked on the newly painted fascia.  I'm pleased with the preliminary results. :)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Cinema is a matter of what's in the frame and what's out.. - Martin Scorsese

Like a scene on a movie screen, or a picture in a frame, or a display in a museum, most model railroaders like to frame in their layouts with valances and fascia, because if it's done right, the valance and fascia help draw in your visitors to the model scene and not the surrounding room.  

A few days ago I made good use of the beautiful weather outside to get out the chop saw and cut the Masonite fascia pieces that I had previously measured.  Today I decided that all the parts for the fascia were small and light enough that I can handle putting them up without any help.  

The method I use to fasten the fascia pieces to the layout edge is to apply Liquid Nails for projects to the Gatorfoam bench work edges, and then I apply the fascia sections making sure to press them on firmly.  I then tack on 2-3 brad staples from my air brad nailer to hold everything in place.  Fast and simple.  The pictures below show the end results of today's efforts. 

I'm still working out the logistics on how I'm going to hang the valances but in the meantime, I can start painting the fascia (black) and installing throttle plugs, throttle holders, and those neat signs from Sign-O-Matic.