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MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 12/13/2013 :  10:23:57 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
No pictures for this update, although I'll post some in the near future, but I didn't want anyone to think I fell into another one of my slumps. Progress has been steady, but I've been all over the place!

First, I put down homasoate and track on the second level around the steps and started the finishing process for the area coming out of the steps and around the landing that we installed in my last post. It's coming along nicely and when complete, I hope it will blend in with the shelf and wall area on the landing as it transitions onto the layout.

I've also resumed putting fascia on the layout. Last time Bruce was over, I bought two more sheets of Masonite, which should be enough to finish up all the fascia. The upper level is just about done with only two more pieces to put on, then I will resume the lower level. Once all the masonite is on, I will go back and paint it flat black.

Finally, trackwork! I've been working in about three different areas, depending on what mood strikes me at the time. I'm almost finished with the Shamokin Branch on the upper level, as track has made it's way into Mt. Carmel from both the staging yard and from the main portion of the layout. All that remains there is to layout the track arrangement in Mt. Carmel and nail it down! Progress also continues on the Selinsgrove branch. I am now installing the coal yard in Shamokin Dam and making my way east back towards Selinsgrove Junction where the branch connects with the mainline.

I will update with photos in the next few days when there is something photo-worthy to post.


Mark

Edited by - MarkF on 12/13/2013 10:26:48 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 13071 Go to Top of Page

Tabooma County Rwy
Fireman



Posted - 12/13/2013 :  11:06:57 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey, Mark,

Good update. Looking forward to your next round of photos.

Question: Are you using Homabed, the milled homosote product? Or are you cutting your own out of 4x8 sheets? I'm helping a friend on his large layout and he is using the 1/2" thick stuff cut in strips from a 4x8 sheet, and then he is adding kerfs to be able to curve it. Sure is messy and seems like an awful lot of effort to go through. Just wondering what method you are using...

Al Carter



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jbvb
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 12/13/2013 :  7:16:39 PM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Al, I've had success just cutting homasote with a utility knife. It takes some arm strength and usually several passes, but no clouds of fuzz all over the place.


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Mike Hamer
Engineer



Posted - 12/13/2013 :  11:01:42 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Congrats, Mark, on the completion of benchwork. What a huge accomplishment. This is going to be one heckuva great layout...already is!

Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
http://www.bostonandmaine.blogspot.ca
http://www.craftsmanstructures.blogspot.ca
http://modelrailroadsivisit.blogspot.ca

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Harsco
Fireman



Posted - 12/14/2013 :  08:05:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Congrats, Mark..it's been a long and winding road, but you've reached the "Benchwork Done" milepost; now the real fun begins!


Country: USA | Posts: 1320 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 12/14/2013 :  10:51:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tabooma County Rwy

Hey, Mark,

Good update. Looking forward to your next round of photos.

Question: Are you using Homabed, the milled homosote product? Or are you cutting your own out of 4x8 sheets? I'm helping a friend on his large layout and he is using the 1/2" thick stuff cut in strips from a 4x8 sheet, and then he is adding kerfs to be able to curve it. Sure is messy and seems like an awful lot of effort to go through. Just wondering what method you are using...

Al Carter



Hi Al! Yes, I'm using the 4x8 sheets of homasoate. But generally, I'll use a large piece to cover and entire area where there might be a town, etc. Of course, most of what I had is from my old layout so for this layout, I think I only bought two sheets. I've always used a 3/8" plywood/1/2" homasoate subroadbed and while it tends to be messy, I like the end result.


Mark

Country: USA | Posts: 13071 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 12/14/2013 :  10:54:40 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mike Hamer

Congrats, Mark, on the completion of benchwork. What a huge accomplishment. This is going to be one heckuva great layout...already is!



Thanks Mike and Rick! Yes, it is a huge milestone and feels good to be there. The next big milestone will be finishing the three branchlines, which will connect the entire layout into one large continuous run and allow me to run trains while I accomplish other work, like laying out various areas and buildings, etc. Who knows, maybe even an op session in my future!


Mark

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Vagel Keller
Crew Chief



Posted - 12/19/2013 :  9:57:27 PM  Show Profile  Visit Vagel Keller's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Glad to hear you're still chipping away, Mark. I've been "all over the place" these last few months, too, although not as productive on my layout as you.


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LynnB
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 12/20/2013 :  01:07:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mark good to hear the benchwork is done, one stage out of the way and more fun fun fun to come.


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MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 12/20/2013 :  08:19:43 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Lynn and Vagel! Like most people right now, I'm slowing down a little because of the holdiays. Long hours at work and running around getting ready for Christmas has left little time, but I'm managing to squeeze in an hour here and there. Next milestone... getting the branchlines in and trains running around the entire layout, both levels!

Mark

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Dutchman
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 12/20/2013 :  08:23:29 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mark, it is great to hear the your bench work is done. I'm looking forward to hearing about progress on those branchlines in the new year.


Bruce

Modeling the railroads of the Jersey Highlands in HO and the logging railroads of Pennsylvania in HOn3

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MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 12/20/2013 :  10:12:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Bruce! I'm about halfway done with all three. The Shamokin Branch is about 3' from being finished. I'm at the halfway mark on the Selinsgrove branch, and just starting the Wiles-Barre branch, so I'm getting there.

Mark

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MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 01/12/2014 :  11:19:53 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
With the holidays over, progress continues. Iíve been bouncing around the basement working on several projects at the same time. Some projects are not as photo worthy as others, such as the installation of fascia, etc., but its all progress!

My big focus was to resume track work and work towards my next goal of getting all the branch lines in and running. In my last update, I had said that I had started laying track into Shamokin Dam where the Pennsylvania Power and Light power plant will be located. I have since continued laying that branch line out around the lower peninsula through the town of Hummels Wharf and into the town of Selinsgrove.

This first picture shows the branch line coming around the corner from the power plant and into Hummels Wharf. The two tracks to the right with the hoppers on it is the small coal yard that feeds the PP&L plant. You can see the branch line to the left of these two tracks. One cut of hoppers is from Glen Burn Collieries and the other cut comes down from the Reading Railroad.



As we continue down the aisle, this is the rest of Hummels Wharf. You can see the coal yard in the distance at the end of the aisle, and the branch line continues through Hummels Wharf to the foreground where it will curve to the left around the end of the peninsula into Selinsgrove.



Hummels Wharf was a small community with no railroad activity, however modelers license prevails! I have three business here that will be served by the railroad. To the left of the branch line is a space reserved for a car repair facility that Rick (Harsco) researched. While this business was not located in the area I model, it sounds to cool not to include on my railroad. Allied Tank Car Repair will handle repairs of all car types including tank cars, having a couple of buildings as well as an outside track, lending itself to neat details as well as a nice location to set out just about any car type! On the other side of the branch line will be a freight house and team track location.

Coming around to the other side of the peninsula we enter the town of Selinsgrove. You can see that Iíve laid out the roadbed and turnout locations. Selinsgrove is a larger town with several smaller businesses served by the railroad. The line literally winds its way through the town, which Iíve tried to capture here. In the distance you can see the cutout for where the bridge will be located where the branch line crosses the Susquehanna River before it joins the mainline at the end of the aisle to the left.



As Iíve been laying track, Iíve also been dropping track feeders, installing circuit breakers, etc., so as to power the track and test run as I go along.

The other area that Iíve been working on is the area at the bottom of the steps where the lower and upper levels come out of straging and around the landing of the steps. You may remember in my last update that Bruce and I installed the shelves that would become the subroadbed for these two levels as they make their way around to the layout. I have since finished the top shelf by trimming it out and painting it the same color as the trim in the rest of the basement.

This is now the view you are greeted with when you start walking down the steps into the basement. You can see the two levels of track beneath the top shelf.



This is the view from the bottom of the steps looking back up to the landing. Since my last update, I have installed the homasote and laid the track on the upper level piece that makes itís way into Mt. Carmel. This track actually represents the Lehigh Valley Railroad coming into Mt. Carmel where it interchanges with the PRR. All that remains in Mt. Carmel is to lay out the last 5í or so of branch line trackage there and the Shamokin Branch will be complete!

You might notice that I also painted the underside of the top shelf, as well as the middle level with sky blue paint. The blocks you see glued to the top shelf will support the valence that continues around to hide the rope light I will be installing here.



The next step will be to install a backdrop in this area and box off the area where the trackwork goes onto and through the steps. Iíve decided to go with using .060Ē styrene for the backdrop as it will bend easily and because of the thickness, will be easier to blend into the wall as it transitions onto the layout area.

So slowly, itís all coming together. I am working towards my ultimate goal of finishing all of the branchlines, When complete, I will be able to have a continuous run that goes around the entire layout on both levels! Then I will be able to start laying in the sidings, defining industries and work towards the first op session.


Mark

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nhguy
Fireman



Posted - 01/12/2014 :  11:42:52 AM  Show Profile  Visit nhguy's Homepage  Send nhguy a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
Great progress there Mark. I like what you have done with the step to the layout room. Are you going to add plexiglass so shoes won't knock the trains off going down the stairs? It would help keep the dust and dirt off this area too. With all the branches coming on line your going to need more operators.

Bill Shanaman
New Haven RR
Hartford Division
in Colorado.

Country: USA | Posts: 4763 Go to Top of Page

Harsco
Fireman



Posted - 01/12/2014 :  3:53:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looking good, Mark...have got to make the trek to Northumberland soon to see everything in person. I like your solution to the steps...very smooth transition from staging to the layout. Can't wait to get Tank Car underway....


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