Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tunnel and interior and base paint / Owenyo, Ca.

I have constructed a blasted rock tunnel portal in this series of images with hydrocal rock castings and fiber decor modeling material. Some of the tunnel interior is made from carved foam so that they can easily be removed if needed. Other photos show the fresh washes of base color applied to the desert hills. I mix a batch of burnt siena, mars black, ocre and titanium white to make this tone. We will eventually sift on some soil gather from the actual location being modeled here.

Adding slopes against desert hills

I'm am building up a slope and grade for a narrow gauge line passing through Owenyo, California to Clovis, New Mexico.
I am building up the terrain with expanding foam from a can. After it is dry and hard, I will shape it with a sharp kitchen knife and slather it with fiber decor modeling material. These mountain sections must be removable so I lay down some cellophane wrap under the area I am working on so the foam will not adhere to the board.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Other side of the tunnel

This side of the tunnel will lead us into the Idaho landscape. Here I have worked the hydrocal rock castings to fit the minimum amount of space in this area of the layout. It is planned to have a short snow shed leading into this tunnel portal.

Tunnel Rockwork

Here the tunnel is a facade to disguise the emergency escape ladder leading out of the basement. Structures and trees will make the final touches when this section is complete.

Steps in Ballasting track

Here is the process in which I ballast track. Make sure to tape off the switches so that ballast does not interfere with moving parts. I use a light tack painters tape. Saturate the dry ballast with water and a couple of drops of dish soap. This pre wetting of the ballast will allow the ballast adhesive to slip right down between all the granules and give a secure hold. The next day, I remove the tape and carefully and lightly ballast around the switches applying glue with an eye dropper.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Ballasting Track in the Railroad Yard

Here I have been ballasting track in the railroad yard. There are five varieties of ballasted track. Plenty of adhesive is needed to completely soak through the ballast and to keep it secure.

More foam building ahead

As I come around the corner of the layout, I will need to build up the scenic base with foam. This image shows how
much foam is used on this layout. My friend, Rob Nelson is assisting Dave Hikel with electrical duties. Rob's brother
is a great friend of mine too, he builds websites. See his work at

Removable scenery sections

These scenery sections are removable from the benchwork in the event access to the upper level is needed.
Foam is great for this because of its strength and light weight.

Finishing up raw scenery in the Cascades

Here are some views of the raw scenery that is basically finished in this area. I am continuing to work around the bend.