Author Topic: East Tennessee & Western North Carolina RR ("The Tweetsie") branchline in On30  (Read 16564 times)

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p51

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    • Stoney Creek Branch of the ET&WNC, in On30
I bought a wood tray at Hobby Lobby for when I do op sessions so I could place cars on it when I'm swapping out stuff at the interchange track when the session resets for another train. I put some Atlas Code 100 HO re-railer sections on it, and it'll hold more than enough cars. So at an op session where I run another train, I can have a new set of cars ready on this tray in another room, ready to go. I can also connect alligator clips to wires to the DCC system and use any of these as a program track if I need to. There's also room for boxes for the car cards for each car being swapped out, too...

Model Railroad Hobbyist magazine like it so much, they're going to run it in an upcoming issue...

p51

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Yesterday, I went to the Tacoma Trains hobby shop for the VERY last time, as they closed their doors for good at 3PM. I’m very sad to see the place go as I bought all my track, many of my freight cars and lots of supplies from them during the layout build. Now, I’ll have to go to Portland for anything comparable, but at least I won’t need to go too often to hobby shops anymore as the layout is for all intents, completed.
I had been eyeballing a Whitcomb On30 diesel they had there for a very long time, and I finally decided to get it. It’s a type of locomotive that the Army did buy during WW2 and used a few on narrow gauge lines in Europe and I have no reason to doubt they might have had them stateside as well (I know they had them in standard gauge). The ET&WNC had no diesels until 1968, but I will be adding some detail parts to this, probably painting it black and then lettering it for a US Army-owned locomotive. I will then be weathering it very lightly as it’d be new at the time the layout takes place. I already have a good GI figure to put into the cab. It weighs a lot as it’s almost all metal and it runs great. I need to get the circuit board and speakers to have it as a sound-equipped locomotive. Here it is on a test run around the layout:


p51

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I took this with my cell over the weekend:

p51

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Here are a couple of other shots I played around with recently:





p51

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The On30 Annual is out now and even though I've yet to get my own copy (I have the digital proof of my article, though), I've already gotten some email kudos for it.
Funny how you never know how others are going to take what you put out there, but I never excepted the warm reception in the hobby I've gotten with my layout!

davefoxx

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The On30 Annual is out now and even though I've yet to get my own copy (I have the digital proof of my article, though), I've already gotten some email kudos for it.
Funny how you never know how others are going to take what you put out there, but I never excepted the warm reception in the hobby I've gotten with my layout!

Lee,

I'll have to check that out.  Good work deserves a nice pat on the back!  Kudos!

DFF

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
Member: Wilmington & Western RR
A Proud HOer

p51

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I don't think I've ever seen anyone taking photos of a magazine alongside the real layout the article is about, so I figured, why not, now that my layout is in a magazine?







p51

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I made the signs for the heck of it, but the number boards and scale Whitcomb builders plates are for the new On30 Bachmann diesel.
These were printed on white decal paper, from Micro Mark.

Earlier, I did these decals on blank MicroScale decal paper, for the stencils that will go along the main 'carboy' of the locomotive.

I've decided to keep it in its yellow paint, and will paint the running gear and frame black.
A 1/43 GI figure will be sitting in the engineer's seat once it's done.

davefoxx

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Awesome!  I can't wait to see video of your diesel running.  Once I get going on my On30 layout, I could see me getting suckered into purchasing one of those locomotives.  When I was probably about ten or twelve years old, my father took me over to a local railcar repair facility, and I got to operate a standard gauge locomotive very similar to that Whitcomb model.  I wish that I could remember what that locomotive was, but I vividly recall the siderods.

DFF

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
Member: Wilmington & Western RR
A Proud HOer

p51

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Once I get going on my On30 layout, I could see me getting suckered into purchasing one of those locomotives.  When I was probably about ten or twelve years old, my father took me over to a local railcar repair facility, and I got to operate a standard gauge locomotive very similar to that Whitcomb model.  I wish that I could remember what that locomotive was, but I vividly recall the siderods.
Funny you’d mention this and I actually forgot all about it until just now, but a pal of mine bought an industrial property in Florida at a tax auction just for the heck of it. On it, there were several switches and some track. You couldn’t see any of this from the road or the interstate nearby. He later bought what I think was a 25-tonner and there were already some beat up gondolas on the property. He’d invite people over have a real-life op session, with switching orders and everything. I ran that loco a couple of times like that. Looking back, it’s amazing none of us got killed as we weren’t using proper RR safety procedures.
I lost track of him (pun intended) after I moved from Florida, and have no idea whatever happened to all that. I drove through the area a few months ago and the entire property had been scraped to the earth and a tractor-trailer place was there now. I really wonder whatever happened to all that.

davefoxx

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That's a great story, Lee!  1:1 ops session.  Sounds like fun . . . if not a little dangerous.

DFF

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
Member: Wilmington & Western RR
A Proud HOer

p51

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That's a great story, Lee!  1:1 ops session.  Sounds like fun . . . if not a little dangerous.
Oh, it was both. I remember we went to the local fast-food place (I can’t recall if it was a McDonalds, could have been an Arby’s) after running one afternoon and someone mentioned how none of the cars had working air brakes and none of us knew how to properly man a car during switching moves. Seemed funny at the time, but looking back, I’m surprised none of us going squished.
Funny how I hadn’t thought of that in years. I only ever took a camera with me one time and I don’t think I took any photos. I don’t remember anyone else, either. Maybe we were dissuaded from doing so, looking back (this was over 20 years ago), as the owner wasn’t too keen on us telling people about what was going on in there. I remember him saying that he was happy you couldn’t see what we were doing from the road. I also recall him saying he’d had the locomotive off-loaded onto the property and placed on the tracks inside the main building at night, so nobody would likely know what was going in there.
I got invited as a friend of a friend of his. Plenty of local railroad fans had no clue about the place and only the ‘inner circle’ was ever invited and we were all encouraged to not mention the place to anyone else. One of my best friends still lives near there and is a bigger train fan than I am and I doubt he has any idea it was ever there.
There had been a main line for a railroad going right past the property, but that was abandoned, I think, in the 90s. The tracks were weed-covered going past his property at that time and I doubt there’d been a train through there in years before that. The entire line was ripped out soon afterward (it went under the highway).

p51

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Over the weekend, I got stuff done.
First, I took some Wiseman castings of lanterns and made a short bench for them to be at the station stop at Winner. I like how they turned out, in spite of them being insanely small. The bench I made from some scrap wood.

Then, I put the self-made decals for the Whitcomb 50-tonner for the Army markings and builder plates. I decided on very light weathering, but enough to see it's been used in the short time the locomotive would have been on the line. I limited the weathering to what it would look like on any given day before heading back to the Army spur and the first Sergeant having a look at how 'his' engine looks at the end of the duty day.
It's sort of hard to see, but I put a little bit of weathering on each end and along the running years but a little highlights and just a tiny little bit of smudges along a car body and the roof as well as the area of people would be walking into the cab from along the walkway.
Other than that, I think the Army would keep it just about as clean as it appears here, especially if it was brand new not long ago when they got it.



This last shot shows the wear I placed from footprints and grime along the steps and walkways, which would accumulate almost right away...

p51

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I was playing around with long exposures in the dark and the glow from my cell phone (with a solid blue screen) to stand in for 'moonlight'. I think it didn't turn out too bad:

davefoxx

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I like it, but maybe try a second cell phone with the "blue light" to hit that dark spot at back left.

Oh, and this discussion makes me think of this: "Attention, K-Mart shoppers, there's a blue light special on the ET&WNC."  :D  Sorry, I couldn't resist.

DFF

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
Member: Wilmington & Western RR
A Proud HOer