Friday, July 26, 2019

Arroyo Update, Running Trains, Weeks Mills On2 Extension/Staging

July Update 

 Arroyo Extension (On30) 
Deer Creek and Laurel Operations (On3) 
Albion Module -Weeks Mills? (On2)

Arroyo Tram

I've had a little time to work on the layout this month, so  Arroyo Tram  (On30) extension has been progressing along. Getting land forms up and preparing for some scenery. I've also been working on a Gilpin Tram style engine house, two stall instead of three. Running trains to make sure my two home built curved switches work ok. They seem to. My three cylinder kit-bash of the Backmann shay is in the paintshop and should be revealed soon, although with the start of the semester looming, it could be a while.

 End view of the 24-inch wide by six foot extension. Man, I wish it was eight feet long.......

 Scratchbuilt Gilpin Style engine house behind a Wild West Kit.

One of the mines on the Arroyo Tram. Man, I really need to work on a backdrop! I just don't enjoy them. Maybe a printed backdrop for something different?

 Deer Creek and Laurel Ry

Ran some trains last night on the Deer Creek and Laurel (On3). My son has very recently begun to enjoy the "puzzle" of switching cars to selected spots. So long as I keep it simple and only help when asked, he really likes it. He's always enjoyed running trains around but this is an interesting twist.

 Albion Module II Weeks Mills (0n2)

I've been wanting somewhere to send trains and make up trains for my On2 Albion module for quite some time. Getting track down on the Arroyo Extension really increased my interest in operations and I wanted something similar. Switching Albion is really neat as the yard is basically set up just like the prototype, just more compact and contains a runaround since I don't think gravity will work to drop cars in On2. 

There is actually a fair amount of variety of freight handled there for a narrow gauge. During my last visit home, my father let me take a peak at an actual W&Q, WW&F bill of lading book. You can see the handwritten freight handled to and from Albion on a daily basis from 1897 to 1902. Cool, a lot more bark was handled than I expected. So, I decided to build some kind of staging, staging turntable to selector plate staging yard. Gave up when I figured out I could make a "fake"version of Weeks Mills, which I have always wanted to model. So, the only prototype arrangement I'm following is the station, freight house and run around track. An engine house and turntable (gone by the time period I'm modeling) will be freelance. However, it fill fit the flavor and give me somewhere to run trains and more switching to get back to Albion! Benchwork is underway!

I'm trying yet another method of building lightweight modules. Quick to assemble but I'm not convinced this is any better than my previous approach.  See you next month!

Monday, June 3, 2019

Hauling Bark for Extract

Climax 6 was spotted hauling bark over the weekend. 

 No. 6 switching on the mountain

 Backing down the mountian

 Backing through the Deer Creek Gorge

Backing towards the bark storage, passing the chipper house.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

My Version of the Tionesta Valley Caboose

Here is my version of the Tionesta Valley caboose, which started life as an IMA On30 kit. I had started to scratch build a TV caboose in highshcool but dropped the project due to other interests. When I saw the kit for sale online, I thought, here's quicker and easier way to get it done! The IMA kit had some laser cut parts and was a close enough fit to the TV Caboose that I just had to try it out. Not very expensive but nor was the kit perfect. It did not come with trim, ladders, and was not quite the same as TV caboose drawings but again, seemed close.

The basic structure went together very quickly but the windows were, well, not such a good fit. The windows in the basic body, were partially laser etched on the inside and had to be cut out with a knife. The windows had no trim, so the fit had to be perfect and it wasn't. I really didn't like to gaps, especially in the cupola, which had been laser cut all the way through- just a bad match up. So, I cut some small styrene strip, painted it and mounted it on each window. The process was slow but I think improved the overall look of the final product.

I added the tissue paper "tar paper" roof, the stove stack, the ladder,trim and some MacLeod Western On3 Russel trucks. The couplers took a little fiddling but worked out well. Not a perfect TV caboose but looks nice on the layout and I think I'll keep it!

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Taconnet in On2

Finally putting the finishing touches on my Grizzly Mountain Engineering On2 version of the WW&F RY Taconnet, or the #6 combine. I just need to add the water gutters over there doors. A long time in getting this one done. Here is the Taconnet with the Vassalboro.


Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Arroyo Update

First post of the new year! and it is March....oh, well.
Over the holidays, I gave myself a birthday/Christmas present of three WildWest building kits for the Arroyo Tram. The extension is progressing nicely and I felt the need for some "townish" structures. I've completed two of them, though I might re-do the shingles on the fire house, they don't look quite right to me, not enough overlap. Live and learn!

I recently had a comment on how small the GrandtLine Gilpin cars look (see #24 in the background above). Below is the progression from the original ore car to the original with extension, to the larger car. They still look small next to a wood gondola! Still having fun as time permits.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

WW&F visits the SR&RL

Over the holiday I had the chance to visit with Al Cherella and his On2 SR&RL. A wonderful visit and a great layout. I brought along my WW&F No. 7 and some cars to share. I was able to run them from Rangley to Farmington and back, a loooooong run on Al's layout. Sure beat the 10ft back and forth on the switching module. Picked up some good tips on adding pickups my Car Works No. 7. A project I need to get done in 2019. Great conversation. Looking forward to maybe another visit next year..............Al asked if I had room to expand....................

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Western Expansion

I have been working on an addition to the Arroyo Tram, my On30 western mining excursion based loosely on the Gilpin Tram. The Gilpin Tram was a two foot mining railroad that connected with the Colorado Southern in Central City, Colorado. I've always enjoyed the Gilpin tram and at one time had a small On2 switching layout using some of the equipment.

I think the Gilpin Tram is a perfect fit for On30: Tight curves, lots of mines rather close together, lots of information and drawings of the equipment and buildings. There are ore cars available from GrandtLine, other similar cars from SlimRails, who also sells Gilpin style trucks, and shay conversion kits from Wiseman Model Services.

My addition started out as a 2 x 6 foot lightweight module base that I was going to use with a Virginia modular group. The group fell apart and I could never see myself going to trainshows just to hook up my modules. So, it has been sitting around just waiting to be used. I recently added the legs with rollers, which opened up its use for the Arroyo Expansion.

The expansion will include: A Gilpin Tram style engine house, a water tank, run around, storage track, blacksmith shop, firehouse, hardware store and assay office (last three will be kits from Wild West Models). It shouldn't take more than two years to get it all done! (At the rate I'm moving).

Here is what it looks like so far, turnouts and kits are "in the mail" so to speak.

Here is the Arroyo Tram II track plan