Summer Evening and the ML401

Summer Evening and the ML401
Conrail ML401 rolls west through Central New York farm country in Onondaga County, September 1994.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

A Coat of Paint

A quick update for you from the workbench - the B36-7 is now painted, awaiting decals.  This unit will become Conrail 5050 in the next few weeks.  It is interesting how much darker Conrail blue appears without the decals. 


To ensure a more uniform coverage, I paint Atlas and Kato shells while they are disassembled.  This model was painted as a cab, body, and frame/sill assembly, and will be reassembled after decaling and dullcoat.  I have found the 'Scalecoat' enamel-based paint system, made by Weaver Models, to be an excellent product.  A few more Conrail units like this one and we will be set for a while, allowing me to work on some more of the rainbow of foreign units that appeared on the Chicago Line in the 1990's.

Hard to believe August is right around the corner!  Enjoy these summer days and evenings, and I'll be working to bring you a few more updates as the Autumn approaches.

~RGDave

Friday, July 12, 2013

Little Here, Little There

The dog days of summer have arrived early here in northwestern NJ; long, hot & humid days with the occasional thunderstorm.  Actually, it's been one of the wettest summers on record so far this year.  Dodging showers offers some time to be in the basement working on the railroad, so here's a July update with some progress.

The first is a sneak peak at a builder's photo of the next signal on its way to the Onondaga Cutoff - the bracket mast that will guard the eastern entrance to CP280.  This is another of the magnificent custom signals that are being built and supplied by Integrated Signal Systems.  The offset heads are a unique feature required here due to the curve on the approach - the higher heads for Track 2 will allow crews of trains on Track 2 to view their aspects over the top of a train passing on Track 1 (Photo credit Tim Maslyn):



This signal was modeled after the prototype installation at CP293 on the Chicago Line, with the difference being that CP280 is a yard entrance and therefore needs 3 heads to display the proper diverging aspects.  Compare below (Photo credit Nick Anshant):


As always, while waiting for new signals to arrive and for work-nights to be scheduled, I am working on other projects to fill time and keep the progress moving.  Currently, another B36-7 project is occupying the work bench, and is seen here ready for painting.  Creating an HO scale B36-7 is a chore, since there are none available in plastic.  The best starting location is the Atlas B30-7, as most of the details are correct.  I needed to rearrange the air intakes at the radiator section, modify several doors, replace the cab, remove the nose headlight mount, and add numerous details including an anticlimber, cab-signal box, several antennae, etc. 

And, most importantly, Susie has turned one!  It is truly hard to believe that she was born more than a year ago already.  She continues to be a happy, healthy little girl, and her presence has brightened my world.  Happy Birthday, Susie! 


Enjoy the long, peaceful evenings on these summer days!  Thanks for reading, please check back soon for more updates as the projects continue!

~RGDave