Thursday, January 23, 2020

TRAIN TIME: The Edge of Town Layout Starts Getting a Makeover - Pt 6 New Paint and Finally Some Plasticville

When I built the Edge of Town layout back in the day it was done rather hastily. The lines for the 'roadbed' were drawn in by hand and the base coat of tan rather poorly painted in. The Marx track w/plastic roadbed hides most of the underlying paint but there are still a bunch of spots where that bright tan peeks out from the sides. I've now painted all of that underlying area a hunter green. The siding was painted in a dark brown and there won't be any plastic roadbed used there because I wanted the less manicured look of a siding vs. a mainline. A portion of the road leading out of town was given a coat of darker gray. In addition Plasticville structures are finally making their way on to the layout. I had Plasticville buildings when I was a kid but when I got into 3-rail O-gauge as an adult I shied away from them, concentrating instead on Marxville buildings. That omission is now being rectified :-) Enjoy! Opa Fritz

Here's a couple of my Ya'AllTube videos showing the slow-but-steady rejuvenation process.

Friday, January 17, 2020

TRAIN TIME: The Edge of Town Layout Starts Getting a Makeover - Pt 5 Odds-&-Ends

Rejuvenating a layout - whether a large one or small one - is a series of mini-projects within the larger project. When I first built the layout, it was kind of a rush job so that I could get it up and running for train meets. The lines delineating the roadbed and river and roads were all drawn in and painted by hand - ahem, rather badly I hate to admit - and some areas didn't receive the attention they should have. Case in point: the 'river' just sorta stopped in front of the bridge LOL Okay, so now I at least painted the blue all the way to the rear of the board. Perhaps not too noticeable but I know it's there.

The area to the left of the layout was just one big patch of medium gray paint. I defined the roadway a bit better and painted it in with Woodland Scenics 'Asphalt' paint.

Back in the day, when the layout was new, there were operating crossing gates on the far left. Those were removed over the years. I decided to bring them back and made three insulated tracks used to activate them. The outer insulated rail needed a power hook-up by using spade lugs inserted into the bottom of the rail. A hole was drilled in the plastic roadbed and once installed on the layout isn't even noticeable. More to come. Enjoy! Opa Fritz

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

TRAIN TIME: The Edge of Town Layout Starts Getting a Makeover - Pt 4

Here's the last storyboard for the renovation of the Edge of Town layout and it covers removal of the old Marx plate girder bridge. I built foamcore and poster board mock-ups and then cut them up to mimic the scrapping of the old bridge. Enjoy! Opa Fritz

Friday, January 10, 2020

TRAIN TIME: The Edge of Town Layout Starts Getting a Makeover - Pt 3

Well, well, well, where did I leave off? Oh yeah, I was started to rejuvenate the small Edge of Town 3-rail train layout. Although we had lost our old computer that doesn't mean I was idle. Nope, work on the Edge of Town layout has been progressing, albeit a bit slowly.

I began the process by storyboarding the deconstruction. This fantasy sequence shows the removal of the black Marx stamped sheet metal plate girder bridge for eventual 'scrapping'. In it you'll notice the plastic construction vehicles that were in several iterations of Marx's Big Inch Pipeline Construction playsets. While the figures that came in those sets were quite large and out of place on an O-gauge layout, the vehicle's were spot-on and overall look great on a 3-rail O-gauge layout. Until next time - Enjoy! Opa Fritz

I'm Baaaack and A Happy Belated New Year!

Well, I hope you all had a great holiday season - whatever holiday it is you celebrate -if any! In any case it's over now for another year. Ours was sorta, kinda uneventful. The grandbaby of course got all the attention at Christmas - as one would expect - and her haul of Barbie toys was quite good. I revel at all the bloggers, YouTuber's, and facebooker's who show off all their goodies. Me? I got a small plastic candy cane filled with M&M's that ended up getting passed around for everyone to eat! hahahahaha...

...and life goes on!

Soooo, why did it take so long for me to post anything here? Well, we lost our computer again! When this happened back in 2014 not all of our stuff had been backed up and we lost a couple of years worth of photos. This time I believe we only lost the few photos Bettina had taken on the day the computer died - no biggie. I'm not quite certain if it was a virus or old age. The thing was old to begin with and started acting up a couple of months ago. To that end I made a concerted effort to back everything up in preparation for 'The Day'. 'The Day' finally came around the 23rd of December and it died. On Christmas day I ordered a new PC on-line (using my back-up laptop) and while I waited the week for it to arrive, used the time to assemble and put in place the new desk we had bought from IKEA. First though we had to disassemble the really horrible old corner desk that sat here like a big black and brown monolith sucking all light from that corner of the room! LOL Yeah, I bought that thing many years ago with the thought that, as a corner table, it would somehow save space and be efficient. Nope! Didn't happen.This particular design was big, bulky, ugly and ended up wasting space. The new desk still holds everything the old one did but does a better job at organizing what's put on/in it.

I s'pose the new PC was my Christmas present to my myself, but truth be told, Bettina uses it a lot more than I do. Looking at it now, this was a blessing in disguise as the new PC has a faster processor, more RAM and a larger hard drive, the lack of which made using the old PC a challenge. I haven't edited any of my train videos for a while now because the old PC's hard drive was maxed out for capacity and new space-hogging video editing software wasn't a good option. Also, trying to edit large files (of which I have several) was time consuming: type a few things, add a picture and wait forever for it to save! I hope that I can get back in the groove with some of my old projects that were kinda shelved!

Well, posting should continue again - more or less regularly as is my fashion. Until our next meeting - Enjoy! Opa Fritz