Oct 2, 2013
Interesting idea, using that 3M tape.
Wow! This is looking fantastic!! I really like your idea of using double-side tape to block in the plaster.
I have been busy finishing off some structure kits. RSlaser's BillCo freight shed it serving as the little boat dock / fuel station. The Nansen Street Models farm house was a easy to build kit, and the chimney just barely clears the shadow box lid glass. The track side depot is a bash of several kits and leftover parts. The platform was made from leftover parts from the MTL board walk kit used for the wharf. The depot is a bashed GC laser tool shed that was expanded to have a passenger shed. The freight shed is a GC Laser shim shed.
Time to move onto the greenery. I just need to decide on a season.
Gosh, it all looks great.
You probably mentioned this already, but what did you use for the large gray building?
Mark in Oregon
That one is the Fry's Fish Packing kit made by Stonebridge Models a few years back. Unfortunately it's no longer in production. A shame really. They made some really nice kits. I had to cut it down length wise by one set of windows to make it fit the space.
That is a shame, you're right.
I just checked an online dealer, and it looks like most SBM items are either sold out or back ordered. Hope that dosen't become a trend...
Mark in Oregon
Great job on the NSM farm house! I love the weathered look!! Love to see what modelers do to my creations!
I am just catching up here. This is a really nice little layout. I love the sorts of envelope pushing I see in Z scale.
How do you like that little Searails critter? I keep thinking about getting an N scale one for my pike.
I can't believe I missed that you are the man behind Nansen Street Models. It's been great watching your harbor layout develop over time and become more and more super detailed. Keep up the good work.
The Searails EMD Model 40 is a neat little critter. For its size it has remarkable grood power pickup and pulling power. This has to do with the heavy brass casting that is used for the model. Power pickup is still an issue with this engine as it has a very small wheelbase. Track must be kept clean! I did a review earlier on the EMD Model 40 here:
According to the Searails website, some RTR PowerMax steam engines are in the future in N and Z.
Here is a video of mine doing some switching:
Looks great! The small loco runs very well.
I’ve been working on getting static grass put down on the layout. I did some testing with a different grass colors, and decided to go with a dry grass intending to give it an Autum / harvest season feel. I did some transition to green as the grass got closer to the water. I ended up using 4 different colors of static grass, some ground foam, and tufts to give it some variety and depth. The end result looks just about like early June in California, so I'm off by a few months. The trees arn't permanently attached yet and will be turning green soon.
Is the AZL Geep able to run on so tight curves?
A normal AZL GP9 is not able to make it around those curves. That GP9 has been modified, as has the MTL car behind it. It can go around those curves.
The curves use 45* R120mm easements into two 45* R95mm sections at the center of the curve. Almost nothing goes around that R95 track, and it really limits what I can run. Body mounted couplers won't work, and cars have to be 40' or less. Several modifications had to be made to the the AZL GP9 to get it to work.
1: The AZL GP9 has to use the front dummy coupler and pilot insert. By cutting off the truck mounted coupler front truck is free to turn much further. The front dummy coupler is not usable on this layout.
2: The rear truck mounted coupler has to be modified. The rear of the coupler box hits the pilot opening, limiting the range of the rear truck. By cutting back the coupler box to the notch where the coupler cover snaps in, you can increase the trucks rotation enough where it wont derail. Its only an extra 0.5 mm of travel, but it was enough! Of course the coupler cover would pop off without those clips, so you can either glue it on, or use heat shrink to hold the coupler together. If I were to do it again, I would only shorten the sides of the coupler box. The top and bottom don't need to be removed.
3: The MTL car behind it has a bit of weight added to it. AZL couplers are stiff and the engines coupler still swings out pretty far from the centre line when going through the curves. This will derail most freight cars. MTL couplers easily swing side to side to help alleviate this. Then I just added some extra weight to the car to make it harder to derail.
Looks fantastic. What are you using for the trees?
What I have done to increase the swing of the couplers is to replace the AZL couplers with MTL couplers. The problem is that the AZL coupler box seats lower then MTL, so the coupler is lower then the one on a MTL boxcar. One solution is to put a strip on the bottom of the coupler box to raise the coupler, but what I have done is to lower the coupler on a boxcar to match the loco. That way, the coupler has a smoother swing to it.
On such a small layout, there's is a limit on what you can run. I can only run anything that's shorter then Penzee hopper.
Nice very nice. I am impressed with that mod to the coupler. The layout is very cool and well detailed. Just great work period.
The trees are SuperTrees from Scenic Express. They send you a bunch of dried sagebrush like plants that are 5-7 inches tall. For Z scale you only need the top 1-2 inches so you cut that away and toss the rest. Sometimes you can find a reasonable tree or shrubs out of the lower branches. They are easy to make and look pretty good for the time invested. The N scale kit is fine if you need the green foams, otherwise just get the refill, a bottle of matte medium, and a spray bottle if you don't have one.
I'll try the MTL coupler conversion on one of my WP Geeps.
Trees are done! Had a chance to take some photos in the morning sun. I have a few more small details to add before I texture the water. I may re-do the roofs of the depot buildings. The static grass stuck to any building that had stick on details, like window frames. I've been going over them with tweezers pulling it off. I use roll-on adhesive to make the roofs sticky and then apply the shingles. It leaves the sides a bit tacky, and static grass likes to stick to it.
Those trees look really good; and what a difference to makes to have them...
Mark in Oregon
This has got to be a prize winner!
This looks really great !