Monday, March 30, 2015

Some land forms part 2

 Well, we are working from the west end of the Narrows back to the East. We have placed hydrocal filled gauze - used for plaster casts - onto the rosin paper. Then I spray it with water and brush the cloth to smooth the plaster and get it to set. We have used about 10 by 10 squares as the pieces to build the structure. Hydrocal is hard and light when it dries.
 You can see what I continued down the hillside with the plaster cloth.This gives a nice view of the future hill side.
 Looking back - I also added a coating of Structolite on top of the hydrocal to give it more strength and to allow for better color retention.
 The different color is from the recent addition of the Structolite as it is still wet and slightly darker in color. When it dries it will be white. This approach is cleaner and faster than the old dipping of paper towels into a hydrocal bath. I used that approach in the past and like this more.
 This is how it will look with the station in place. I will raise the station a little to get a better view from the aisle.
 A nice old station for a country road. Can't wait until the cars are going by! That plaster sure makes a mess.

Adding some land forms

 Watching Ed Rappe and working on his layout, I have learned that using rosin paper is a quick way to get some sense of the land form one wants to have. So, last week Jack Brown and Paul Cierzo worked on building the hillside leading up to Mt. Carmel. they first put up some cardboard webbing and then added the rosin paper.
 These are two views of their work leading up to the top of the grade. This stretch of about 25 feet took them one evening
Looking back down to the Narrows, Ed and I worked on the hillside here. I redid some earlier work to get a better look - shown by this photo through the cut
 This  is a view back top the rest of the narrows showing the rosin paper and the webbing in the distance. That is what holds everything up. We use a hot glue gun to place the webbing and then glue the paper to that.

 A closer look. You can easily see the PRR track and the upper shelf is the Reading Company track.
This is a close up view of the webbing and placing the rosin paper in place. I still have blisters where I got the hot glue on my fingers - gosh is that painful! The indentation in the hill is for the gas station that was there.

Building the turntable - Part 8 - Riveting the cabin

 Well, since the last post, I filled the corner seams of the cabin with Squadron Green putty and sanded everything smooth. I then sprayed the cabin with Tamiya primer based on a recommendation from Jim Mucka. It really set down very nicely even though shot from a spray can. I used a grey Polyscale paint to put the tissue on the roof as tar paper. I then drew guide lines for the rivets on the walls that I will add to simulate the steel sheets that made up the covering of the cabin.
 Using Archer rivets for the first time, I put a double row using the tank car set simulating two sheets of steel on the front and rear of the cabin. Then I used single rows to do the rest of the work around the base.
Here is the finished cabin with all rivets in place. Those Archer rivets are sure handy and relatively quick. I did have to use Champ Solvaset to eliminate air under the decal film. Next is into the spray booth for the final color.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Turntable Part 7 - the control cabin building

 Well, this is another saga that is unfolding gradually. In between shoveling snow and working on my taxes, I am trying to build the cabin for the turntable. I built it first without any instructions as the kit came with none. Here is how it looks with the fancy filigree work that was typical of the early 20th century.
 I was wondering how to paint this so I looked in some PRR related books to get some shots of turntables in service. That was when I discovered a couple of things. By the mid 50's the cabins were typically sheathed in steel but the same basic dimensions - good so far. I can cover this with sheet styrene for steel. But the four windows faced the engine and the two window wall was to the pit. Problem now because I had built this in reverse. So, two choices - tear it apart and start over or make two new windows and sheath over the two on the rear wall.
 So, I went with option two. I cut out the wall for the new windows, matching the size of the existing two.
 I drilled a hole for my Dremel milling bit and rough cut the opening
 This is the rough cut openings beginning to look like windows.
 Here I have now framed around the opening with scraps so it matches the depth of the two original windows. I proceeded to file the openings to match.
 Now I have cut the styrene to cover the walls.
 First I tried yellow carpenter's glue and that while it did not hold the styrene well, it gave me a good base for ACC
 So, here we are with the windows in the right orientation and the cabin sheathed.
Now I am getting ready to put tar paper on the roof - but first I have to finish my taxes.