Thursday, February 16, 2017

Finishing the river at Gloconda

After touching up the base scenery around the bridge abutments and adding a few rock outcroppings I decided to finish the river with a coat of gloss medium.  The blending of different color shades when painting the river bed gives the illusion of depth.

I have been trying out the Silfourettes grass tufts from Scenic Express and really like them.  Some of the greener ones were placed along the waters edge.







I took this photo after securing the Gloconda section into it's place in the layout  and with the bridges set temporarily in place to see what it would look with the backdrop behind it.





Saturday, February 11, 2017

Finishing the concrete bridge at Gloconda

Finishing the segmented concrete trestle on the SP line required a bit more work than the thru truss bridge on the WP line.

A printout of this photo has been posted above the work area as a reference for me to follow.
The 3 bents that I had started got trimmed to fit into place under the layout.  Because this bridge is on a slight grade, each bent is a different length and the marks on the top indicate their relative position under the bridge. The bents and bridge were air brushed Testors aged concrete and after drying for a couple days were glued into their positions.
A layer of Hydrocal plaster was poured into the river that was deep enough to cover the cross bracing on the bottom of the pilings so it appears that they are driven into the riverbed.  The bents were covered with sensitive surface painters tape to protect them from getting any plaster on them.

When I removed the painters tape from the bents some of the paint was pulled off and had to be touched up with a brush.

The bents, deck, and abutments are being weathered with acrylic washes and powders.

At this point the bridge deck fits nicely into place but can be easily removed for working on the river and the areas around the river under the bridge.  When I am satisfied with those things, the bridge deck and track can be installed.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Finishing the thru truss bridge at Gloconda

Last summer in the post First crossing of the Humboldt River I had started building a Central Valley Models thru truss bridge for the WP line and was scratch building a segmented concrete trestle for the SP line to match the bridges in this photo that I show again here as reference.




Completing the area around the river is a combination of several different projects including the two bridges that are all interrelated.  In this post I will cover the the finishing of the Western Pacific thru truss bridge which is in the foreground of the scene.

After assembling the Central Valley Model Works bridge,  the abutments that it would rest on were made from 1/4 inch plastic material and installed into the scenery on each side of the river.  They were then brush painted with Testors aged concrete.  One of those is shown in this photo.

I have always noticed that none of the bridge model kits include the bridge shoes that attach the ends of the bridge to the abutments.  I found a set on the KD Models Shapeways shop designed by Dwayne Ward who is modeling the Texas and Pacific in N Scale and has a blog for his T&P layout.



The bridge structure itself was then air brushed with Floquil Old Silver. After drying overnight it was given a wash of Testors black acrylic weathering wash.  The weathering wash really brings out the details such as rivets and the year of construction that is cut into the top plate on each end of the bridge.

I am now applying some weathering powers to highlight some areas of rust.

Here is the same abutment shown in the earlier photo after the same weathering wash had been applied.

Those bridge feet seemed understated until they also received the weathering wash when the bridge was done, now I think they really show off nicely.  I will be ordering more of these for my other bridges.



The ties were removed from the middle of a section of Micro Engineering flex track and the bridge ties that came with the kit were popped into place after ACC was applied to the rail bottoms.
This assembly will be air brushed a rail tie brown color and be ready when the time comes to install the bridge.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Train Board winter layout party

Regular followers may have noticed quite an increase in the frequency of my posts lately.  That is because I have been participating in the annual Trainboard.com winter layout party.

The idea is to focus on some particular goals for a layout and then post on the progress regularly on Trainboard's Layout Design forum.  This event started at the end of December and will run to March 9th.

If you are not already familiar with Trainboard.com, check it out.  There are many different forums of all scales as well as a large photo library.