Nittany and Lock Haven HCD Layout

Primavw Nov 21, 2013

  1. Ristooch

    Ristooch TrainBoard Member

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    Your matchstick wall looks really great. I suggest that you stain the timbers before the Sculptamold to ensure that they are fully covered front and back. then you can add more stain once you've poured in the Scultptamold. A light dry brush of silver, white, or gray on the surface of the timbers should add some depth to them. Looks terrific and please send some of your motivation over here!
     
  2. SYROUS

    SYROUS TrainBoard Member

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    Been a while since I have scene your layout progress. Very nice work, got a lot done.

    Sent from my LG-D852 using Tapatalk
     
  3. Primavw

    Primavw TrainBoard Member

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    Progress is coming along, slowly as usual. I completed staining and weathering my "matchstick" retaining wall, and literally spooned in coal material into every gap. Next, I tackled the coal pile. I also had some time to sift some unsanded grout on the mountainside. I'm still trying to decide if I want to try Supertrees with puffballs for the hill or something different.

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    Trackside for good measure
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    Comments welcome.
     
  4. Primavw

    Primavw TrainBoard Member

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    Over the last few days, I had a chance to experiment with puffball trees. Since this layout is centered in Pennsylvania, its hard to find a single mountain or hillside that ISN'T totally engulfed in forest. Since I'd like to finish this layout sometime this century, I decided against composing the forests in nothing but armatures. I must say, I'm very pleased with the process of making trees this way. About an hour of work produced about 150 trees. Not only that, but I only went through one full bag of WS Poly Fiber (16 gram) and about a bottle of white school glue.

    The fruits of my labor:
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    Before I started plunking down my forest canopy, I sculpted some more shale rock faces. Rock faces freshly stained, and getting ready to lay the first layer of mod podge to Dixon Run creek:
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    Comments and criticism strongly encouraged. I'm unsure if next time I should lay the next batch of puffballs to bare sanded grout or put a bit of ground foam down first. I will need to figure out if I'd rather do Supertrees for foreground trees or make custom armatures with wire.

    edit: tiny pics fixed
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2015
    WPZephyrFan likes this.
  5. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Uh oh. Looks like Photobucket didn't like the latest set of links. :(
     
  6. Eagle2

    Eagle2 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I'm thinking you got a good representation of dense woods; from my own observations, at any distance we do tend to lose the trees for the forest, as it were.

    On a could improve note, perhaps try adding some more coal to the pile? It looks a little much like a solid lump rather than a pile from what I can see.
     
  7. Inkaneer

    Inkaneer TrainBoard Member

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    I like the rock work both texture and coloring. However, I would do something with the streambed. It looks like swimming pool colors. The bottom in the shallow areas should have the color of the surrounding ground with any deep areas painted either black or a green/black mix.
     
  8. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    AH. I can see the photos this morning. I like the ground colors!
     
  9. randgust

    randgust TrainBoard Member

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    My approach on the Hickory Valley logging module was to grind up dried leaves in a blender, making a near-powder, and making that into a ground cover. That certainly got the color right under the forest areas.

    For trees, I put Woodland Scenics foliage puffballs on twigs, not very high up, just so that something was holding them up a bit rather than just glueing them on the mountains itself. Toward the back edge they are glued directly down. This has held up really well over time.

    See: http://www.pbase.com/atsf_arizona/image/137618527
     
  10. Primavw

    Primavw TrainBoard Member

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    Hey guys. I just wanted to tell you I've been "rocking" and rolling lately.

    Here's a few shots of my hand-carved shale rock faces.
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    I used joint compound for these again. I've you've never attempted this, I highly recommend it! It takes less time than using rock molds, and is ready to carve in 15 mins or so.

    Also here is my first attempt at blasted rock:
    [​IMG]

    I attempted to stain the drilling lines with a white wash but it bled over some of the rock faces and looked murky. So I stained over it. I may try a toothpick instead of a brush to see if I have better results.

    Comments welcome!
     
    WPZephyrFan likes this.
  11. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    That does not look bad at all!
     
  12. SYROUS

    SYROUS TrainBoard Member

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    Nice rock work, the colors you decided on made everything turn out fantastic.

    Sent from my LG-D852 using Tapatalk
     
  13. Primavw

    Primavw TrainBoard Member

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    Work continues on this layout. I tried my hand at some WS "Forest Canopy" tree armatures. They are little more than some sort of shrub, snipped, dried and packaged. I cut off the little buds, leaving just the "branches". I decided to go this route because Supertrees are ungodly expensive, and twisting and plastering thousands of wire trees is just an excruciating task to imagine for an PA-style layout. I could see myself making 20+ and then just loosing all motivation at the mounting struggle laid out before me. I scored 3 WS canopy kits for $5 each. They are a bit brittle though so I'm not sure how these will stand the test of time...

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    I also poured "Dixon Run" creek using WS realistic water, tinted with a touch of green, and topped off with lacquer.

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    Obviously a long way to go before I can complete this scene. The treeline will be completed with thicker brush near the ground, which is typical of overgrown PA woods.

    On a side note, it has been awhile since I've ran trains and my track is dirty to the point of having crappy conductivity. Obviously more than a quick cleaning is needed to get trains running smoothly again... yikes.
     
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  14. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Been a while since your last update. Glad to see a progress report.
     
  15. Jeepy84

    Jeepy84 TrainBoard Member

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    Good to see you still at it. Those armatures mixed with the background puffballs works really well!

    Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
     

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