Friday, 31 January 2014

Rethinking the refinery...

I finally painted my LPG/propane loading platforms grimy black, and when I positioned them to see how they'd look I got to thinking about the rest of the refinery scene.

Back in this post I included a photo that indicated that I'll be including some large storage tanks in the area behind the refinery's LPG/propane loading platforms. However, after looking at photos I'm not sure that having large bulk storage tanks is the right way to proceed.

This 1951 photo of the refinery shows a string of (unpressurised?) tank cars at a loading rack, possibly bringing in crude oil. The LPG loading platform had not yet been built.
Skip ahead several decades, and Google Earth provides us with this view of the refinery.  The original loading platform is on the right hand side, and the newer LPG loading platform is now visible on the left hand side:

Unfortunately I don't know when the second platform was built

This is a closer view of the newer platform and its surroundings:

Neither photo shows large storage tanks near the loading platforms.  I'm not sure whether those long cylindrical tanks were around in 1960, but those two huts (one of which seems to be a 40' x 100' quonset warehouse hut from WW2) might well have been. As the two tracks closest to my backdrop are for receiving inbound shipments, having a couple of warehouses nearby makes a lot of sense.  So I've been doing some experimenting with mock-ups of these buildings to see how they might fit into my scene.

So, after all that preamble, here is what I'm now considering:

What do you think? Storage tanks or sheds? Personally, I like the sheds even though I'll have to compress them a little.



  1. Ron,

    Seems you have storage tanks well represented in the photo backdrop so you don't really need to have any more as foreground models.

    Nice compassion photos of the prototype refinery, bet the surrounding area has also changed in all those years.

    1. Hi Brad, and thanks for the input. I think you're right about the storage tanks.

      I also agree about the "then and now" photo comparison. It seems like when the refinery was built they left lots of space for subsequent development, and it has been needed. I was surprised to see that many of the large storage tanks in the earlier photo are not in the later photo. I would have thought that when a tank had reached its end, they'd simply put another one on the same spot.


  2. The refinery looks great. I love the pic of the six tank cars at the loading platforms. Very nice!