If It's GERN It's Good

Discussion in 'Photos & Videos' started by doctorwayne, Apr 18, 2006.

  1. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    In response to some queries, here's a brief look at GERN Industries facility in Port Maitland,
    the Gibson Works - Mining and Milling Division.
    It's probably apparent to most that this complex incorporates a couple of Walthers kits, along with several scratchbuilt areas. The buildings, for the most part, are set at an angle to the front edge of the layout.

    Here are a couple of over-all views of the complex, which is about 6'6" long.
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    The large building and silos in the centre of the picture started out as Walthers ADM Grain Elevator, with Added Silos. Because the back of the structure cannot be viewed, the silos were arranged to give the maximum number of visible silos, even though most have no backs. I used .060" sheet styrene to fabricate the supporting structure under the silos, which allows viewing of the cars spotted for loading. There's not much detail underneath, as the "ceiling" is quite a bit higher than the top of the openings along the side. Detail consists of plain doors with drop-down walkways for access to the cartops. I didn't bother to model the loading equipment.
    The first "tower" (the part with windows and the dust collectors on the roof) is from the ADM complex, while the next tower, set back and a bit taller, is scratchbuilt from more .060" styrene. The corrugated metal equipment shed atop the silos is from the Walthers kits, all facing the visible side, with a plain styrene back. The tallest tower, farther back still, is the rest of the ADM building, sitting atop more scratchbuilt structure (the part with more dust collectors on the roof). The balance of the main building, starting at the section with the three stacked pairs of windows, is scratchbuilt. In the view with the doorknob in the edge of the picture, those silos are more leftovers from the Walthers add-on silo kit. The rooftop watertower is scratchbuilt from a heavy cardboard tube, with a rivet-embossed .010" styrene wrapper and roof.

    Here's a view of a train passing by the silo area. The addition of the "concrete" legs really helps the structure to loom over the trains.
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    This is the same area, without a train in the way.
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    And a few more views:
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    The main line passes between the buildings of the complex. Here we see a weed sprayer extra coming off the TH&B interchange. That flatcar under the loading bays is used as an idler car to reach hoppers that are spotted too far in for the loco to reach. The low overhead clearance is protected by the "R" (restricted clearance - see rule book) sign.
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    Here, some EG&E general service covered hoppers (Bowser) are being pulled from beneath the loading silos.
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    This view through the "canyon" shows a couple of the overhead connecting passageways between the old and new parts of the complex.
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    And looking the opposite direction:
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    And from a bit farther back:
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    And as seen from the roof, looking east:
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    This is the older part of the facility, made from the Walthers Flour Mill. The near end is used as Walthers intended, while the other end and both sidewalls were combined with some more .060" styrene to create the long wall facing the siding. The back (blank) and far end wall, along with the roof and loading dock, are all built from more .060" sheet.
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    Most of this building uses the Walthers details, although the roof over the loading dock, to the right, is sheet and strip styrene, supported by brass rods. The boxcars spotted for bulk loading are scratchbuilt.
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    Here's a closer view:
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    The tankcar loading facility is all scratchbuilt, except for the brick pumphouse in the foreground. The large tanks are more heavy cardboard tubes with styrene wrappers, while the smaller horizontal ones are made from plastic tubes from rolls of Telescript paper. The loading platform is made from strip and angle styrene, while the piping is styrene rod and tube. The loading pipes can be swung out over the tankcars. GERN leases several tank cars that use this facility.
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    And here's a look in the opposite direction.
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    Again, from the end of the loading track:
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    The final visible part of the GERN complex is the warehouse from which bagged flux is shipped out in boxcars. Here's a car being spotted for loading.
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    The entire building is scratchbuilt: foundation and loading dock, along with the sub-roof is more .060" styrene (I buy this stuff in 4' x 8' sheets), the walls are Evergreen corrugated siding, and the roof is covered with Campbell corrugated aluminum sheets. This train is heading past the loading dock though, with a load of milling machinery. It'll be spotted inside the main building: the doorway is just visible in the first two photos in this thread.
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    A bit closer, with no train in the way.
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    And here's Grand Valley Mogul number 34 doing some switching at the plant.
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    This free-lanced industry, based upon an imaginary product, allowed me to build a fairly plausible looking industry (I think), yet gave me the leeway to add embellishments that I found interesting. It generates an enormous amount of traffic and also allows me to be a little bit imaginative in creating purpose-built rolling stock. Here are a few GERN freight cars, which carry GILX (GERN Industries Limited) reporting marks.

    GILX 806 - Fluxene Peroxide Service (shortened Athearn car with added details)
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    GILX 807 - Liquiflux Service (shortened Athearn car with added details)
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    GILX 808 - Sludge Service (Athearn car with added details)
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    GILX 809 - Anhydrous Flux Service (Athearn car with added details)
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    GILX 5570 - Bulk flux service (MDC car - unmodified)
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    GILX 5575 - Bulk flux service (MDC car - unmodified)
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    While most of GERN's production output is shipped to industrial customers, for use in other products or processes, one division of GERN is directly involved in the production and marketing of pharmecutical products, many of which are advertised nation-wide, on billboards like these.
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    And here's an advertisement touting GERN products:
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    I hope you've enjoyed this look at GERN Industries. Your comments or questions are welcomed.
    And, don't forget, "If It's GERN, It's GOOD"


    Wayne
  2. webmaster

    webmaster Member

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    Your pictures are very inspiring.

    Thank you.
  3. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

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    Very nice pics as usual, Wayne. :thumb:

    All the buildings look great! I especially like the smoke blackened catwalk that crosses over the tracks...very nice touch.
  4. viperman

    viperman Active Member

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    Wow. What scale is this? These buildings must be pretty darn tall. Sure looks great
  5. cn nutbar

    cn nutbar Member

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    if it's gern,it's GREAT !!!!
  6. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Thanks for the positive responses, folks. Viperman, the scale is HO, and the tallest part of the structure is 18" high. The opening in the coved corner of the backdrop, seen in the first two photos, is for attachment of the framing for a second level of the layout: when it's completed, GERN will fill the scene, with the top of that tower probably hidden by the underslung lights.

    Wayne
  7. lester perry

    lester perry Guest

    Nice pics but I am more impressed by the structures. The size is fantastic, not very often you see something of that size on a layout.
    Les
  8. Art67

    Art67 Member

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    Wayne, Thanks for that industry tour. That is seriously one of the nicest industries I have ever seen modeled. But then again, there are a number of industries on your layout that I am covetous of. Top notch job!
    Stuart
  9. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

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    Fantastic Wayne! Thanks for posting this collection of photos of a very realistic looking large industry! The first thing that strikes me is the unitform color of the structures that provides that sense of one large company. Then as I study the pics I see details like the restricted clearances signs, piping, and vents that really add to the scene. Its neat to know that you make your tanks out of easily availble items like carboard tubing. You manged to get a terrific effect with them. I have a large cement compnay on my layout that is sort of "roughed out", that is the basic sha[pes of the structures are there but it needs a lot of edtailing. Your pictures have given me some good ideas.

    Ralph
  10. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    Blown away. How long have you been working on this layout?

    kevin
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Once again, thanks to all for the positive feedback. Work on the layout started back in 1988, when I designed and built my house. The original plan called for a house for the family, and a basement for my trains. All of the mechanicals, breaker panel, water heater, no furnace (electric heat), etc. on the ground floor, with the basement one big windowless room. Then, wifey decided that the laundry room should be in the basement. Of course, I needed a workshop for trains, so a little more layout space was lost. I had the layout room finished:drywall and insulation, drop ceiling with lighting, benchwork built, and all of a sudden, the kids needed a room in which to use the computer or entertain friends. Not only did I lose the space, I also lost the time needed to build that room and revise the track plan. I'm not sure when I actually got to do some serious work on the layout, but I do know that it only took a short time to lay the track. I already had a fair size collection of trains, although I'm constantly upgrading or redoing them. Also did some painting and detailing for others, plus of course, the usual life stuff, job, family, etc. Being retired (2 years this month) certainly gives me a lot more time for trains, and I'll often spend 12 or 15 hours a day on them. Sometimes it's work on the layout, and other times it's build freight cars, or buildings, or rebuild locomotives. For the last few days, I've been working on scenery: unfortunately, this is in 1:1 scale, and the ground cover seems much heavier than in HO. Also got a structure to work on, but again, 1:1.
    I think that everybody here has seen pretty much all of my layout, except for a fair-size unfinished section in the middle (track, landforms, and bridges, but no scenery or structures), and several threads around the Gauge have photos with structural elements in the background for my proposed second level.
    I was just this evening talking with cn nutbar about the same old finished sections of my layout being seen again and again, and wondering if the audience will get bored before I get some new scenes finished. I hope not.

    Wayne
  12. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Wow, what a series of great photos. The buildings and the thought behind them is very impressive!
  13. Wyomingite

    Wyomingite Member

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    One beautiful job there Wayne.

    Ron :thumb: :thumb: :thumb: :wave:
  14. Art67

    Art67 Member

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    The view "through the canyon" is amazing, I love the speed restriction signs as well. Wayne, that ocean sure looks impessive...are there any ground level shots of those beautiful breakers and whitecaps? Simply awesome.

    Stuart
  15. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

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    Wow - fantastic!!!! :thumb: :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:
    I agree with Stuart, the view through the "canyon" is excellent. Thanks, and don't worry - we never get bored of great shots like these!!

    Val
  16. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Wow, thanks again! I'm so pleased that eveyone has enjoyed these views. Sorry Stuart, but this is the only other shot that I could find of that inlet of Lake Erie.
    [​IMG]

    Wayne
  17. Art67

    Art67 Member

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    I can almost smell the salt air from here! The coloring of the waves with that grayish-blue green looks perfect. If you do not mind divulging, what medium did you use for the water?

    Stuart
  18. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    My technique for depicting water is on Page 8 of this Forum: the thread is called "Finally, the "Pictures at 11:00" or quick, Noah, get the boat...". Basically, it's just plaster, worked to get waves or ripples, then painted with latex housepaint, followed by a couple of coats of clear urethane.
    And although Lake Erie does, at times, have a smell of its own, "salty" would not likely be the adjective used.:D

    Wayne
  19. cn nutbar

    cn nutbar Member

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    when the flux is flowing,the trains get rolling

    hello---Gern Industries is a major supplier of flux products---extra power is often required to move this valuable commodity---cn power is glad to lend a hand

    [​IMG]
  20. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Oh, rats! I certainly hope that that last shot was taken during a long dry spell: otherwise, I'll have to go back and redo the water effects that should be in the background, between Finlay Fresh Fish and the yard office. :D :D

    Wayne