2020-2021 Thirteenth Annual International Winter Layout Party

ppuinn Dec 11, 2020

  1. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    "We know you're out there!
    Yeah, you… and you… and you with the potato chip hanging off your lip and the half-drunk beverage sitting beside you. We know you're not working on your layout as much as you hoped to. "

    Rick Nicholson (Screen name: rsn48) issuing the first Layout Party invitation in Spring 2002.

    Welcome to the 2020-2021 Thirteenth Annual International Winter Layout Party!

    You may have ideas for a new project that you always wanted to try but never got around to.
    Or there is a stack of kits on your workbench you’ve been meaning to start.
    Or you have a partially completed project that has been neglected for far too long.
    Or you have an almost-finished project that just needs some final fine-tuning and attention to complete.
    Or you are already in the midst of a project and you want to participate in the Party to share your progress with everyone else.


    The purpose of the Layout Party is to offer recognition, encouragement, and support to all participants who are working on a layout project, and to provide inspiration to those following others’ progress in the thread. We hope to have a group of people who will post about the work completed on their layout at least once a week for the next 11 weeks. We will, of course, congratulate those who have worked on their layout, and encourage those who haven't.

    This year's Layout Party officially begins this weekend (Friday, December 11, 2020), and will run for 11 weeks until Sunday, February 28, 2021.

    Guidelines for The 2019-2020 Twelfth Annual International Winter Layout Party Thread:

    1. In your first post, please include descriptions of:
    --your layout (brief),
    --the area of your layout that you intend to work on (“before” pictures, please…if available), and
    --a description of what you hope to accomplish in the 11 weeks of the Layout Party.


    2. At least once each week, post a brief description and/or pictures of your progress--or lack of progress--so far, and what you hope to accomplish in the next week. The object of the Layout Party is to have fun, so plan accordingly: set a reasonable goal...and feel free to revise your goal upward or downward as you go along, so you are having fun instead of feeling stressed.

    3. At the end of the Layout Party, post a description and/or picture(s) of your accomplishments.


    FWIW: Some observations and suggestions:

    • Life Happens. The idea here is for us to have some fun and act as an electronic support group so we can each get more done on our layouts.
    • Make a firm commitment to post at least once each week about progress on your layout project.
    • If you fall off the Layout Party Work Wagon, acknowledge it by reporting it honestly.
    • Then climb back on the Layout Party Work Wagon. Declaring exactly what you plan to work on during the next week will help you get back on the Layout Party Work Wagon.
    • When we have others coming over to see our layouts, we tend to get more done because we plan and prepare better, and then actually follow through so we have something to show our visitors and can garner some strokes for all our efforts. Posting in the Annual Layout Party works in much the same way: we plan, prepare, and follow through a little better when we know someone will be seeing our progress.
    • If you encounter difficulties on the layout project, remember that the other participants and all the TrainBoard members following the Layout Party thread can be a resource for encouragement and problem-solving.
    • If you have any problems posting pics, let us know so we can do appropriate problem-solving.

    Many participants have enjoyed this format and have commented that they accomplished more work on their layout in the short time we ran a Layout Party thread than they had in long time. Many members posted pictures, asked questions, moaned about problems, and encouraged others who were working through their own frustrations. Check out these links to our past layout parties.

    2019-2020 Twelfth Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2018-2019 Eleventh Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2017-2018 Tenth Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2016-2017 Ninth Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2015-2016 Eighth Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2014-2015 Seventh Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2013-2014 Sixth Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2012-2013 Fourth Annual International Winter Layout Party (Really, it was the Fifth Annual)

    2011-2012 Third Annual International Winter Layout Party (Really, it was the Fourth Annual)

    2010-2011 Third Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2009-2010 Second Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2008-2009
    2009 - First Annual International Winter Layout Party

    2008 - Spring Layout Party
    Sixth Annual International Spring Layout Party - TrainBoard.com

    2007 - Spring Layout Party
    Fifth Annual International Spring Layout Party - TrainBoard.com

    2005 – Spring Layout Party
    Door Knocker's Delight

    2004 – Spring Layout Party


    2003 – Spring Layout Party
    From Armchair to Benchwork

    2002 – Spring Layout party
    Lonely Heart's Club Band
     
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  2. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    I think my project will be the HO Frisco Ft. Scott Depot scratch build, Sumner 3D printed the dome and arches underneath. It will go at the left end of Ft. Scott and Beyond Layout.

    Thank you Sumner.

    Joe.

    9.jpg

    20-11-16 Frisco Depot-13.jpg
     
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  3. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    This years project for me is building a new grain elevator and getting it in place on the layout.

    Starting point is the silos I have already cut from some PVC pipe.
    Silos.JPG
     
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  4. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    One of the largest/busiest industries on my layout is the Keystone Steel and Wire Mill. I've been working on several Keystone projects this fall, and will focus on 2 of them during this year's Layout Party: upgrading my Billet Storage Cranes, and adding some interior details to my Open Hearth Furnace.

    The 2 overhead cranes in the Keystone billet storage area have been represented by cardboard mock-ups for 17 years, and for this year's Party, I'm finally going to replace the cardboard with Evergreen I-beams and H-columns. I hope to animate the trolley, electro-magnet, and charging table for the crane on the right side of this picture. [​IMG]

    Just this week, I finished elevating the ramp where the charging boxes of scrap iron are pushed from the charging yard up to the 2nd floor charging deck of the OHF. The ramp was a 2% grade, but is now a 3% grade. This steeper grade gives me an extra 1/2 inch in height to the charging deck so I can make a more realistic representation of the teeming ladle being filled from the furnace and the ingot molds being filled from the teeming ladle.[​IMG]

    This is where the original (too low) charging deck was. [​IMG]

    This is a temporary mock-up of the charging deck at its new height. During the Party, I hope to permanently install the bridge connecting the outside ramp with the inside charging deck and add a charging machine on the nearer track and charging doors behind the tracks. The teeming ladle mock-ups were made with caps from contact solution bottles, cardstock and cardboard, but eventually I hope to replace them with 3D printed ladles. [​IMG]
     
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  5. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    I have been looking forward to this thread starting again and am ready to start.

    The first photo I am going to show is one of the last photos from last year so as to have a starting point. A temporary turn around loop made from Kato Unitrack is supported by non-modular shelf type bench work that spans across the end of the train room (about 10 feet). For reference the area I worked on last year is to the right and to the left is the doorway into the room.

    2019TBLP64.jpg

    This has been the end of the layout and has seen some heavy traffic until just a few weeks ago when the next expansion started. I never really stopped working on the layout as with the Coronavirus going on we have stayed at home and of course there have not been any train shows or modular setups. Even though I belong to two different modular layouts with no shows I have not been motivated to work on any of my modules and all of my efforts have been on the home layout featured here. While this next expansion only started recently, over the past 9 months I have gone back over the rest of the layout and finished lots of other little projects. Many of those projects have been featured in the "Whats On My Workbench" and "Weekend Modeling Accomplishments" threads here on trainboard.com and on my own layout blog - Tracks across Nevada.


    As I have in the past I am working from a reference photo. This is the scene I hope to re-create in this next layout expansion. This is the west end of the Palisade tunnels. There is a road just above the tunnel portals called Palisade Ranch road so I am calling this area of the layout Palisade Ranch. On the layout after entering the tunnels the tracks will cross a lift bridge that spans the doorway and enters the last large area of the layout known as Carlin. Those modules are already there as flat plywood and will serve as the next temporary turn around loop.

    [​IMG]


    So, this is where I am at with the expansion right now. This is about the same view as the first photo but with a slight shift to the left. A photo backdrop has been added, sub-roadbed and cork roadbed installed, and a bottom for the river put in. My goals for this years layout party will be to finish this area and get the main line opened again with the new temporary turn around loop and staging yard on the Carlin section.

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    I'm in! I need a kick in the pants to get the railroad running again, and I'm depending on you all for that kick in the backside if I fall behind!

    Here's the layout, in a previous house:
    [​IMG]

    It needs some repair, following the move to my current home, and some finishing.

    My goals are to finish all the repairs, and improve the forest.
    During the moves, the trees on the snow side have been rather abused. Many are mangled, the "snow" crushed/missing, loose in their holes, snow needs repairs, and some spots have yellowed over time. The fascia needs to be cleaned up and repaired/painted to finish it. The whole layout needs to be carefully vacuumed, and on the green side, I need a ton more trees to finish the mountainsides. Like 200 more trees at least. I can build trees at home and have plenty of material to build them. I also have some 3D-printed figures for Doctor Who characters, and I need to finish and install them. It'll be an Easter egg for visitors to find.

    So the list:
    Cleanup and vacuum the whole layout.
    Repair and paint/finish the fascia.
    Repair snow zone trees, yellowed areas
    Build 50 more green zone trees, install
    Paint/finish/install Doctor Who characters

    If there's time:
    Configure some kind of switch mechanism that will hold switches at Crescent in place. The RS-3 (ridiculously simple, model 3) springs are not prototypical... :p
    Clean, paint, decal and install signal shacks at east and west Crescent.
    Build and install speed and other right of way signage.
    Obtain and build crossing apparatus for Gross Dam Rd, install and erect crossbucks protection, sand box for the road.
    Build more trees.....
     
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  7. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Welcome to the Party, Gentlemen! It looks like N-scale will be well-represented at the Party again, this year.

    Joe, Do you know if Sumner will be dropping in to the Party?
     
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  8. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    I'm not sure, will send PM.

    Joe
     
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  9. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    Well considering my current layout is modules and I just got 3 more new unbuilt modules I guess I can get in the sandbox and play too!

    So my current set of modules, are as some already know being a siding with a train station done in Rte 66/southwest style where the tracks are on one side of the street and the businesses are on the other. So in this there are 3 modules a triple in the middle where the station is, and two doubles that have the turnout to the sidings. I have also designed these modules so that the two doubles can link together without the triple in the middle and the road still matches up. Some of the buildings here need some help, some are brand new. I also have a single that is completed (minus feline damage from last week) so repairs may be needed. I have 2 turnaround modules that are undecorated and a branchline module that has been waiting for the 2 new front to back modules (just showed up yesterday) So now I have 8 feet of modules, a turnaround, another 8 feet of modules and another turn around to make my loop. The branchline is going to someday have a large European style passenger train facility. I have also been thinking of an industrial module here too, just not sure what quite yet.
     
  10. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    To better understand what interior details I could fit into my selectively compressed version of the 1970s era Keystone open hearth furnace, last week, I mocked-up some ladles and furnaces and realized that I'd need to increase the elevation of the charging deck from 1 inch to 1.5 inches to include all of the interior details. When I first built the ramp into the OHF in 2003, I used a Woodlands Scenic foam incline with a 2% grade, but last week I added strips of cardboard all along the ramp to increase the grade to 3%. This pic shows some of the grass and trees I "re-planted" last week; I still need to fine-tune the ballasting on the relaid track to reflect how the frequent sanding--necessary for the KSW loco to push the heavy charging buggies up the ramp--had nearly buried the rails. [​IMG]

    Some of my first construction tasks for the Party will be to rebuild the charging floor at its new elevation and replace the bridge that connected the top of the ramp outside the OHF to the newly raised charging floor inside the OHF. This is a pic of the prototype bridge taken in 2015: Refractory Brick Shed on the left, OHF on the right. upload_2020-12-14_14-29-50.png
    This pic shows the (very limited) space on my layout between the Brick Shed and OHF before I increased the grade on the ramp.
    upload_2020-12-14_14-43-13.png
     
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  11. GP30

    GP30 TrainBoard Member

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    1. I am building benchwork for my Kanawha, Youngstown & Northern Railroad. The layout will be 36’x23’ with two levels and staging at each end.

    2. I already have lower staging and lower level benchwork completed in the largest part of the basement, but I need to get through a non load bearing block wall to access an 8x10 “bunker” and another open space about 12x13.

    GOALS:
    A: Build lower level staging.
    B: finish enough ceiling tile installation to build second level benchwork.
    C: Start helix from low staging to the lower level.

    Here is the lower level as it is now:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  12. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    Oh yes the smell of fresh cut wood. Great job @GP30.

    Joe
     
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  13. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Looks like our HO contingent of Party-ers is growing, too. Welcome!

    GP30, are your plans far enough along, yet, to let you share the major dimensions (grade, radii, deck separations, number of loops, thickness of the ramp) for your helix? Inquiring(nosey)minds...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  14. RailMix

    RailMix TrainBoard Member

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    Time to get something going again. As soon as the semester wraps up (on the 21st) I'm in.
     
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  15. TrainzLuvr

    TrainzLuvr TrainBoard Member

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    Ok, isn't there some kind of an alarm I can set so I get an alert email every year about the Winter Layout Party? :)

    At least, I didn't find out about it 2 weeks into, like last year...

    EDIT: Short layout description...Newbridge & Lockport RR, main area 22x13 ft N scale + staging outside the room, continous loop/through staging, ME C55 main, Atlas C80 staging, freelance modelling late 60s to early 90s, imaginary prototype wedged inbetween Class 1 railroads (so I can run any motive power, on loan or through).

    So, I'm starting with this, staging track is all done:

    [​IMG]

    And lights, ceiling and valance have been installed and painted:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    My goal this year is to electrify my staging (DCC, turnout control, BoD, the whole shebang) and lay temporary main line so I have a full loop around my layout to finally run some trains (...or I'm exiting the hobby and starting a knitting club)!

    Sounds easy, right? We'll see...
     
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  16. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    So I removed the brackets once used to secure the cover system. It did leave some extra holes that will require filling before finishing the fascia.

    Baby steps...
    Before:
    20201214_201705.jpg

    After:

    20201214_201724.jpg
     
  17. GP30

    GP30 TrainBoard Member

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    I don’t have a firm plan yet on the helix details but here are the specs in my mind:
    Grade: 2% max
    Radius: 36”
    Separation: 3-1/2” or 4”
    Rise: 11” (Staging at 28”, First Level at 39”)
    Loops: However many is needed.

    I’m not building the lower level benchwork to the helix until I know what height the last piece comes out to, then I’ll have about 4 feet to make a slight grade adjustment if needed.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  18. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Pat,
    Dave is a whiz at designing helix plans. He helped me, a complete n00b, and we designed a bowl-shaped helix that rose the necessary amount, continuous increasing radius.

    I enjoyed building layout framework, too. I think it must be that "fresh cut wood smell", similar to that "new car smell" that folks seem to like.

    BTW, I took the liberty to "sticky" this thread for everyone's benefit.
     
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  19. Kevin Anderson

    Kevin Anderson TrainBoard Member

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    I have been working on a set of 5 Free-moN modules since the beginning of October. I am now to the point for scenery. Main wiring was completed in November. The theme of this loop (it is approx 8’ x 8’ with a 4’ x 18” lead in) is agriculture. Grain! It will have upon entering a large ADM elevator, moving around the right side we will have a siding and an industrial loop. Three tracks. Off the industrial loop is a long spur which will house an ethanol plant. The oil tanks are complete just needing decals which are on order. It will also have a main building and two corrugated steel grain elevators with 4 silos. Then we come to the small town. This has a propane dealer, farm supply store, feed mill, and a Dairy Queen. As we continue we come to a farmers co-op elevator and then a small dairy farm. As I get the scenery completed since these are all mobile, all scenery will be removable.

    Once all the structures are built I will then start painting the modules, ballasting and all scenicking will take place. Then back to wiring underneath as I add switch machines and loconet.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  20. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    Well I've been adding the building insulation board and cardboard webbing little by little over the past few days. After scraping my head on the lighting valance while leaning in to reach the back corner, I stuck a section of 1/2 inch pipe insulation along the edge of the valance to pad it. Some reference photos of the area I am modeling have also been stuck up on the valance.

    2020TBLP2.jpg


    Over around the corner to the right from the above view I have been adding some plaster cloth over some areas that were ready for that.

    2020TBLP1.jpg
     
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