Author Topic: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road  (Read 30612 times)

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M.C. Fujiwara

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Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« on: December 03, 2012, 06:22:46 PM »
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As it seems my Free-moN modules have now become my "home layout", thought I'd start a new thread featuring the whole kit-n-keboodle rather than individual modules.

'Twas a busy weekend: on Saturday I set up all my modules in my garage to 1) troubleshoot, 2) see it if fit in my garage (a "California Basement") and 3) run trains!
Only took about a kabillion hours to get everything going, but once it did...!

A video:


All that packed up into this:



And then this:



[after unbolting and removing the back seats]

And then after a very scary drive down in infamous 880 in rain pouring so hard I couldn't even see the UP yard next to it
https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ll=37.790057,-122.257394&spn=0.004612,0.010568&t=h&z=17
we set up in the Boy Scout headquarters in San Leandro for the NMRA PCR meet.
Funky space in an awkwardly-angled atrium, but nice rockclimbing wall backdrop:


The whole layout was all my modules plus Scott's Moss Beach 2'x4' and Eric's "DCC/JMRI-in-a-Box" command station, but many members (and non) brought trains and iPhones, so it was a rock 'n rolling train day for all!

Hope you enjoy, and thanks for looking!
M.C. Fujiwara
Silicon Valley Free-moN
http://sv-free-mon.org/

Jeff AKA St0rm

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2012, 11:09:38 PM »
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You have a great layout on the go there. The best part about your layout is at any point if you get sick of a part of it you can just take it out and add another.

M.C. Fujiwara

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2012, 07:45:12 PM »
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Thanks, Jeff!
Already planning new parts!

This weekend I took advantage of the wife & kids gone on a trip to Monterey with the in-laws from Japan to set up a slightly different configuration in the garage and "troubleshoot" (i.e. excuse to run trains):



Given that this is most of my rolling stock, I just I'll just HAVE to get more:



Biggest issue is the "dip down" at the module ends as the PC board ties are a bit slimmer than the Atlas flex ties.
Will need to go back and slip some 0.02" styrene under the cork at the endplates and relay the rails.
Not a huge project but one I wish I had done when I first built them (ignorence is not bliss, yadda yadda).

And here's the video:


Tried to show some different angles from before so I won't oversaturate the market and bore you :)

Everything will get put away for a couple months until the Jan show in Richmond, CA, probably.
Guess that'll give me space to finish the 45's and build some more curved modules :)
« Last Edit: December 10, 2012, 07:47:33 PM by M.C. Fujiwara »
M.C. Fujiwara
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wm3798

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2012, 05:25:59 PM »
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Beautiful work, MC.  Filling my head (and my new accommodations) with lots of ideas...
Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

Ed Kapuscinski

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2012, 10:32:09 AM »
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Beautiful work, MC.  Filling my head (and my new accommodations) with lots of ideas...
Lee

You know there's a club with a oneTrak contingent just across the bay...

Also, MC, I too find this really awesome.

eric220

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2012, 02:42:49 PM »
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I'd love to see that in person.  I need to round up some of my equipment and drop by to run a train or two.
-Eric

Modeling a transcontinental PRR
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w neal

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2012, 03:27:56 PM »
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Have enjoyed watching your progress!
Buffering...

M.C. Fujiwara

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2012, 12:12:43 PM »
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Thanks, all, for the kind words.
It is pretty neat to be able to set up and run longer trains (well, at least longer than on the dearly departed 2'x4' Mt. Coffin & Columbia River layout), as well as take it on the road to join up with the other Free-moNers (not pronounced "free-moaners"  :P) for super-long layout.
The minus is that it takes awhile to set up by me lonesome, and it's a full-body workout to wrangle everything around and in place and then to put back.

Eric: the next time the stars align (my wife gone all day or two & you have that day off) you're totally welcome over for some running.
As you can see: got plenty of room in the yards!

Last few days I've been performing "reconstructive surgery" on the 45 ends.
The PC board ties are thinner than Atlas C55 flex ties, and, in my haste, I didn't sand down the main section of cork enough when laying track, so the rails make a slight descent down at the ends.
Nothing most trains can't (and haven't) rolled over, but put two 45's together, and that dip becomes a trough that longer steamers get stuck on with the pilot and tender holding the drivers spinning over the rails.

So, somewhat similar to those buttcheek implants http://www.plasticsurgery.com/butt-implants/info.aspx (and it is at the butt-joint!), I slid in a styrene implant under the roadbed at the endplate.

The incision:



The implant of 0.02" styrene:



[I used a healthy amount of Gorillia Glue to secure]

The clamp & cure:



[Not a lot of pressure from the clamp, just there to keep things even while the GG expands and cures]

The result:



You can see a little GG seeping out the side.
Nothing a little scenicking can't fix!

But now the track is even across the whole module and, more important, across two or more modules!

Perhaps I should expand my layout design service to include some reconstructive and cosmetic surgery?
"Yardgoat Styrene Surgery"
Hmm.....
M.C. Fujiwara
Silicon Valley Free-moN
http://sv-free-mon.org/

M.C. Fujiwara

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2012, 06:35:04 PM »
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Between fun family frolicking and house cleaning (Japanese thing: whole house must be spotless before the New Year, as evidenced by my workbench:



), haven't had a whole lot of train time (but dang if the garage ain't purdy!).

Have been slowly working on the other set of 45's, which involve concrete roads, "big" industries and a lot of detail.

First tacked some forms for the concrete (lightweight spackle + craft paint + water: Lee's Moonshine Recipe) pour:



Then poured.
Didn't mix enough, so thought I'd just pour & mix on the fly:



FAIL!!

Actually worked out alright: just used an old brush to mix the colors in the lightweight spackle toot-sweet, and it settled alright:



If you do use lightweight spackle mixed with paint & a little water, the trick is to pour more than you need, LET IT CURE, COMPLETELY, and THEN sand it down to a nice evenish surface.
In this case (garage, very cold nights) it took 2-3 days to completely set enough for sanding.



Chopped & Frankenstein'ed a couple "curved" buildings, one will have a concrete loading dock, the other door-to-door:



So, after spray painting one red oxide and the other boxcar red (over a grey primer), now in the middle of painting all the little window sills and doors.
BOOOOOOOORRRRRRRRIIIIINNNNNGGGGGGG.
Forgot how boring this was: last time my daughter & I took turns for the long kitbashed structures on the "Alameda-Belt-in-a-Box" layout.
From now on, I'm not doing multi-window/door buildings unless I can "print" the layers and paint separately, so I guess I'll be getting a Silhouette or ?? soon.

So here it stands today:





Well, back to painting windows and doors!
Gotta train show in a couple weeks in mid-January.
Now I just have to figure out how to fit all this in my car again with all the structures intact!

Thanks for looking.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2012, 06:36:58 PM by M.C. Fujiwara »
M.C. Fujiwara
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MichaelWinicki

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2012, 09:16:22 PM »
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Nice job on the concrete MC! 

One thing to consider when it comes to dealing with all those window sills and doors, is to paint the entire structure in the color of the sills and doors and then go back and brush paint the rest of the building in whatever brick color you want to use.  I found things go a little faster and at least my sills and doors came out looking better.

avel

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2012, 10:52:15 PM »
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Also want to say nice job on the concrete. You mentioned adding water to the mix. About how much? Just enough to make it slightly runny?
iamaman27 on the youtubes

M.C. Fujiwara

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2012, 08:39:16 AM »
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Also want to say nice job on the concrete. You mentioned adding water to the mix. About how much? Just enough to make it slightly runny?

The paint itself makes the lightweight spackle more mushy, and then you add just enough water so the mixture stays liquid when it hits the ground.
(If there's not enough water it turns into a dryish foam soon after touching the ground).

Too much water, though, and it takes forever to cure and then is very very soft when dry.

I learned the technique from Lee, so maybe he'll chime in with his magic recipie.

There are some bubble holes left over, but sanding right before adding other ground cover allows the "dust" to get into the holes and the diluted glue mix should fix it.

Michael: good idea on reversing the paint layers.
I just don't want to have too much paint on the parts as it seems to lessen the relief of the brick and door lines.
Perhaps if I cut a window-sized rectangle out of cardstock and held it over each window while spraying, then the walls wouldn't get much paint on them and I could hand paint those.
Hmmm....
M.C. Fujiwara
Silicon Valley Free-moN
http://sv-free-mon.org/

Bremner

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2012, 12:33:24 PM »
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wow, you build so fast, and so well, that it makes most modelers jealous. You prove that modeling is a form of art. 2 things...the lounge music, well, um.....it's music, and that 2-10-2 looks out of place with a coal load, it would look great with an oil bunker

Wutter

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2012, 03:29:42 AM »
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Perhaps if I cut a window-sized rectangle out of cardstock and held it over each window while spraying, then the walls wouldn't get much paint on them and I could hand paint those.
Hmmm....

There actually was a technique like this covered on N Scale Limited for getting sharp lines on a building with so many windows. IIRC .005″ styrene was used so the pieces would be reusable.
Found it:
http://www.nscalelimited.com/2010/01/03/painting-molded-windows-fast/
The site is bound to shut down soon, so hopefully it is still up when you all read this.
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diezmon

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Re: Free-moN: At Home & On The Road
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2012, 12:19:10 PM »
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The paint itself makes the lightweight spackle more mushy, and then you add just enough water so the mixture stays liquid when it hits the ground.
(If there's not enough water it turns into a dryish foam soon after touching the ground).

Too much water, though, and it takes forever to cure and then is very very soft when dry.

I learned the technique from Lee, so maybe he'll chime in with his magic recipie.


just curious.. why do you need to thin it with water at all?  I always use spackle for roads.. but I just mix in the black paint and stir it up and spread it on.  Is the water just for ease of application?