dimanche 11 février 2018

Building a fleet-Part 8

Pennsy, at last! I could not make a consist or at least build a small fleet for my layout without having some Pennsylvania Railroad cars. In the late 40's and early 50's, this company have the largest fleet in the US, equal or nearly equal to the New York Central rival. The ATSF and SP were quite distant second. This said, it seems normal to have Pennsy freight cars everywhere in fair number even on my little So-Cal line. One photo of the 505/506 out of San Bernardino clearly show a Pennsy 50 ft round roof car. Difficult to say if it's an automobile box or not. I've this one on hand, a River Raisin X 33a, already painted when bought and that I wheathered in 2015/2016, so... Couplers and air hoses added, he's now ready for service and it fit the bill. I've two X 29 kit in stock and maybe I could search for a 40 ft X 31 round roof one day (alas the X 26 gons seems to be a tad too long), and my PRR fleet will be OK for me. Piece after piece, my little fleet is taking shape!
See ya'

mardi 6 février 2018

Building a fleet-Part 7

I'am still cleaning the shelves off of the many projects on hold sometimes for years. This Overland brass M 53 boxcar is one of them. It's the kind of box I must have for two reasons. First, it's a real signature boxcar that could be seen everywhere across United States, and due to the B & O sizeable freight car fleet I must have one or two cars of this road (not only a M 53). And second, I've photos of one in a San Jacinto district train. He's typical of a one evening wheathering project. I've bought it decorated, and I've just made the chipping paint and dusting from photos I've gathered on the web. The dusting was made with enamel wash from AK Interactive (one of their dust products. Sadly I don't remember which one...). The finishing done recently was just adding a pair of Sergent couplers, San Juan On3 brake hose, painting and wheathering them, cleaning this little boy a bit and said "good for service"!
See ya'

dimanche 4 février 2018

Scenery Trials

The scenery in the San Jacinto valley is quite different from many places in Southern California as it's mainly agricultural and much more greenier. But here and there along the route typical So-Cal semi-arid scenery take place. I know I've to combine all those elements into my layout. After some limited tests, I've found time this week to do some more trials on a larger scale and used the board with track already in place to do so. The dimensions are 65 x 25 centimeters but the scenery will take place only on the two strips along the track. One side will have general scenery, the other a potatoe field with different stage of crop. So far I've only done a part of the general scenery with not much consistency along this strip. I've tried to crammed much of the cases I could encounter (dried weeds, not so dried weeds, weeds along the tracks, in tracks, etc...).  But it helps as I better see now which way to use or not. Work is halted at present in this state for some times. See ya'

Here and above, some early steps with the basic soil.

A bit dryer

More weedy and greenier like near San Jacinto station (as seen in some photos).

Close up of dried bushes (a bit blurry sorry...)

Overal view

lundi 29 janvier 2018

Building a fleet-Part 6-Tank cars

I need some tank cars for my consists. There were some oil dealers along the district : at least two in Hemet and  one in San Jacinto, and probably some in Perris. Photos evidences shows one or two tank in typical consist of the days, so... S scale is blessed with a nice selection of classic tank cars (thanks to the NASG brass comitee/Overland, WA Drake, Southwind...), curiously as so many lack in some categories...
Like too many of my freight cars, the story began quite a long time ago. Maybe this former SP tank was decalled as Sinclair (CDS transfer) in 2005/2006 and very lightly wheathered. I've also changed the original trucks as mine didn't tracked well with some from American Models. In 2015, it was re-wheathered a bit and I finished it only this week-end. Black is a very difficult color to wheather (light colors like yellow are generaly easier) and it was the case here. I've spent the time of two or three boxcars wheathering on this one only!
I don't have that much photos of real wheathered tank cars in colors so It was a process of trial and errors, mixing acrylic (black), oils (black, raw umber), and enamels paints (AK fuel stains 025, shafts and bearings grease 7012) for the dome and oil traces only. I hope there was a Sinclair dealer along the line to justify the efforts! The next tank will be a yellow Shell 10000 gal tanker with custom decals. I hope it will be easier to do...
See ya'