Friday, June 3, 2016

Early June Update

June is here and with it comes some fantastic scenery completion along Grays Siding between Gerhard and Grays Lake. This post we will take a look at scenery progress, CWE shoutout, and look at future posts planned.

Over the weekend I jumped right into thick of the scenery process. For some time this scene has bee developing, but until I had the ballast down I did not want to start the "green" scenic process. In my last post we discussed the gluing in ballast and the base layer of dirt. Now it was time to add static grass mats, tufts, and flock-turf materials.

The north side of the tracks really sprouted to life!

Like all good projects I needed the right materials. In this case whitr glue, floxk-turf, various coarse turfs, pipette, isopropyl alcohol, and reference photos.

     Material staging at Gerhard

  Google street view reference photos of the area of Michigan I am representing.

While flock-turf from Scenic Express was used, other materials were used to help bring out the texture. Heki 1573 WildGrass was used as the primary static type grass. For more info on using this material I recommend viewing Thomas Klimoski's video on his Youtube Channel. He walks through step by step using this material to cover a hillside on his HO scale Georgia Northeastern. Search "Thomas Klimoski" it should come right up.

So over three nights the ballast, groundcover, and grasses were added. The area between the corn field and high overpass embankment will need to be filled in with SuperTrees which I plan to make this weekend. Enjoy a few more pictures, my goal is to have this scene mostly 95% complete by the NMRA Lone Star Region Convention. 

Rough fitting the highway overpass in. I picked up Plastruct components at Angelos Hobbies yesterday so this scene will be next to complete.

Ballast work complete in the curve. The local siding (closest) is less groomed than the concrete tie main and passing siding. The embankment between corn field and right of way will receive WildGRASS and flock-turf tonight.

Overall view looking east - the results were exactly what I was hoping to achieve.

Closeup of highway embankment showing the scenic texture added.

Wanted to congratulate Tom Patterson on being published in this months RMC. Not only was he published in, but he railroad is featured on the cover.

    Cover preview - article is fantastic

While I have not met Tom personally we do support each other's Blogs with links that you will find on our pages. Helping establish our railroad franchises both in the 70s (CWE) and 2016 (MCIS) one of my customers (Michigan Sugar) at Upper Huron recieves coke from Follansbee, WV which is served by the modern day CWE and WLE. Could there be a MCIS predecessor railroad car on the CWE someday....? Could be... Be sure to check out each or blogs often for updates. 

CWE cars fresh from shop work on Virginia Midland before going back into revenue service.

CWE 125360 and 125379 on M-PHBA-28 heading through Upper Huron towards Bay Yard. Once switched to the L-BAPB they will be back to Upper Huron for spotting at Michigan Sugar.

One exciting part of writing this blog beyond just providing monthly updates is creating content from reader suggestions. Between feedback from the blog and Facebook Freelance Model Railroad comments here are a few topics for future writing.

- HIWIDE Handling on the MCIS
- Consist Power Planning
- Layout Map / Diagram
- Engineers View of the St. Clair Sub
- Behind the Scenes (Benchwork, Lighting, Wiring, Control Systems)
- MCIS Predecessor Roads

These topics will keep me busy through the summer but if there is something you want to see or understand more about let me know via comments. The input by you the reader is important and greatly appreciated. Well this wraps up the Early June Update, ha great weekend!


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