Thursday, 23 August 2012


For the past few days I've been assembling my Central Valley truss bridge kit. When I first opened the package, I thought it looked quite daunting. However, the kit is very well thought out, and assembles quite nicely. There is a bit of flash and extraneous moulding stuff that has to be removed, but the plastic is very easy to work with, and not as brittle as it first looks.

The only real snag that I encountered was in the final step, which required me to thread some string-line (representing cables) through parts of the structure. Well, after trying for some time, I gave up on that. Now that I know how the kit assembles, (next time) I would thread the line as I assembled the parts, rather than leaving it until last. My 'plan B' is to use some fine spring steel to represent the cables, but I don't have any that is suitable at present.

Here's the kit as it now looks:

This is a very nice looking bridge and should look great once I've painted and weathered it.

The smaller deck-girder bridge is from GreenMax, and will be used as one of the approaches to the truss bridge. There should be two girder bridges end-to-end, but I don't have the space for both of them.

Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Work resumes ....

I haven't done much on the layout lately, but I received a parcel of GreenMax building kits from PlazaJapan today, and it shook me out of my lethargy.  I think I had become a bit bored with working on Davis, and needed to do something else for a while.

Here's an aerial shot of Davis as it now looks, showing the final road arrangement:

Davis is at the point where I can start to add some basic greenery, but as I'm colour-blind, I'm not game to tackle that without help.

The main (and cheapest) item in the package from Japan was a GreenMax deck girder bridge kit, which I want to use (in conjunction with a Central Valley truss bridge) for the crossing of the Washita River.  Although there was once a truss bridge of some sort across the Washita River between Big Canyon and Gene Autry, it was gone by 1960. However, I don't like the bridge that now stands there, so I'm taking some "modellers' licence".

So this afternoon, inspired by the arrival of the GreenMax bridge, I set to work on the river crossing. I had already done some work shaping the Arbuckle mountains further upstream, using blue foam sheets. But I found that job to be more difficult than it looks. Today I went back to the tried-and-true cardboard strip method for the hill and cliff-face on the north side of the river. Here's how it looked after the cardboard webbing was installed:

The clothes pegs are to hold the webbing together while the glue sets. I found that idea on someone's blog, but I forget whose blog it was. To that unknown person go my thanks.

The webbing isn't as close as I have used previously, but that's because my next step was to cover the cardboard web with masking tape:

The Washita River is actually quite wide at the point that I'm modelling, and the slope down to the river on this side should be quite gentle rather than the steep drop that I have built. I'll take another look at that slope tomorrow, but I don't have enough space to do a more accurate representation, and still include the rugged cliff face at Big Canyon. This final picture shows what the area looks like now, although the view is from the opposite side of the tracks (ie the backdrop side).

Too bad I'm not modelling this scene from the opposite side. My representation could be very close.

To see how the area really looked from the aisle side back in the era that I'm modelling, click here.

Well that's it for today. Thanks for looking.