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Discussion in 'Logging, Mining and Industrial Railroads' started by Doctor G, Jul 17, 2016.
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I glanced through this thread and learned so much! The heat wire iron is great!!
Thanks Zathros. Thanks for helping Bill with his very good pictures. Doc Tom
Bill, the backbone of the Train section!!
My wife and I took a summer break when my VERY generous sister-in-law, Peg, sponsored a Rail and Trail adventure in Switzerland. This certified "train nut" was blown away by the incredible Swiss rail system.
Imagine my surprise after huffing and puffing up the Swiss Alpine Mountain Rigi Klum on a hike I found this:
For a few Swiss Francs I was able to hitch a ride in mechanized splendor to the top of the mountain while enjoying the aromas of coal smoke and steam oil.
I commemorated the steam adventure in a short You Tube "trailer" I put together for other members of the trip.
Now its back to work on my little creation of steam in the mountains.
I went back to work on the mini layout this past weekend.
I use a bamboo skewer to trace out the lines of each 1" level of future topography. The pieces are then cut with an angled or straight edge using the Woodland Scenics foam cutting tool with plenty of ventilation.
Each layer is then "screwed and glued" to the one above being careful to square and true the edges.
Pretty soon we have a 3D blue ice berg that has some sculpted features.
Here we see the log dump overlooking the Red River. It is 40 scale feet down to the water and the dumped logs will make quite a splash.
On the other side of the layout the Kit Creek Gorge is coming along nicely and you can visualize where the wooden crib trestle will go.
The elevated layout is 10" up from the river and creek beds and 10 layers of 1" foam were carefully cut, stacked, screwed and glued.
There is a 1" gap between the "woods" and "valley" section of the layout. Here is where the 1" thick foam divider will go.
Each scenery "chunk" can now be taken to the workbench for carving strata and rocks. The square edges will also be carefully sanded and smoothed.
Thanks for looking. Doc Tom
Let's do some stratification.
The Kittom logging outfit is situated at the border of Tennessee and Kentucky (close to my real home of Clarksville TN.). The geology of this area is fairly simple sandstone capping limestone. It is the limestone that makes up the biggest portion of our rocks around here and the rivers have cut through it making some pretty spectacular faces and cliffs.
I wanted to model this on the Kittom Logging mini.
The layered foam sheets lend themselves to the creation of limestone cliffs and rock outcroppings. First I used a Sharpie to mark out rocks and areas that would be the forest floor on a steep slope.
Next I used the dremel tool and a grinding disc to cut strata in the limestone rock faces. Note, I did not use the universal sanding drum that came with the d. tool. It tends to rip and cut in to the styrofoam board a little too aggressively. Don't ask me how I know.
I use the very edge of the spinning disc to cut the foam lightly. You tend to follow the clockwise rotation of the moving disc to "skip" gently over the surface and you end up with this …….strata.
And it looks like this:
Here is a shot that shows the difference between the worked rock faces and the original layered foam boards.
I next used a sanding block to taper the forest floor down to the rocks and smooth the edge of the "foam block" I have created.
Next up will be carving in vertical drainage lines on the rock faces.
Thanks for looking. Doc Tom
Oh Boy!, Tom You have stroked up your game rock wise! Looks great.
I can't wait to see your progress!
Thanks Bill. The strata of the rocks reminds me of your hydrocal carving technique. The Dremel and the foam sure made it quick and relatively easy. Tom
Thank you all for following along as I carve away at blue insulation foam. Hopefully I can get some colors going soon to break the mono-color "blues."
Here I have got the vertical drainage lines cut on the rock face overlooking the Red river (looks blue).
Here is a shot with an On30 Porter from my other mini layout so you can see the proportion of the rolling stock to the cliff face.
Thanks again for looking.
Ahhh yes Limestone Springs. Folks around here say it is the special waters from the limestone springs of Kentucky and Tennessee that allow us to make such good whiskies…… the Kentucky Bourbons and "Black Jack" Daniels.
I of course had to model a limestone spring on the mini logging layout to capture these beautiful works of nature.
I used the different grinding wheels pictured above to cut out the rock edges and the slope of the spring as it tumbles from a side of the mountain down in to Kit creek.
Of course before we start marketing whiskey water from this spring we will have to get the pigs out of there.
Happy Labor Day
This weekend holiday of rest allowed me some time to work on the mini layout.
A little math and some measurements and I was able to construct the scenic divider between the two elements of the little logger.
Here is the "River Valley" half:
Here is the "The Woods" half that includes Kit Creek:
A connecting track on the diagonal necessitated a rather large opening in the divider.
Some creative camouflage with trees and nearby mounds of earth will be used to disguise it somewhat.
More work this Labor Day.
An interesting way to hide wires for the track and the other electronic goodies is to carve grooves in to the foam panels. The wires/grooves are then covered with expanding insulation foam from a can and the original surface restored.
On the "Woods"section the wires will then be hidden under a creek bed bottom and drop off into the center cut out of the scenic divider.
Opening up the center scenic divider of the layout you can see where the wiring will disappear down in to the cabinet below.
I installed a plastic conduit tube to carry the wires.
This conduit tube is in the dead center of the layout and acts as a centering pin in to the center of the cabinetry below.
This allows the layout to be removable yet centered on the cabinet below. Disconnect plugs will allow the layout to "undock" from the lower cabinet.
All of this is disguised when the other half of the layout is installed.
I hope this all making sense. Glad to field any questions or comments.
This is looking GREAT! Love the subject and the layout! Eagerly await the next installment!
Thank you Gandolf. Glad you like the layout and the concept. I just started painting the base of the mini layout tonight. Looking forward to slapping some colors on the blue chunk of foam. Tom
Just outstanding Doc! Thanks for sharing the fun with us. I love the hot wire cutter and foam for creating landscape. My cliffs aren't as big as yours, but... I have a 'great divide' into which one of my drivers fell... and lost his head. I still haven't found it.
Watching from here...
Hi NB. Thanks for the (+) feedback. It is appreciated and it is good to see some other Zealots on this site.
Is this the missing Driver's Head???
IK looks like I'm slow getting caught up. Love the rock carving. The spring will a a special protect if done in the winter as you plan. The big frozen waterfalls where water seeps out of the limestone and sand stone on the Cumberland Plateau are an interesting feature that has always been interesting.
Glad you like this little project. Yes, still planning doing this layout as modeled in the winter. I have been researching how to make the frozen waterfalls coming out of the limestone. Should be fun! Tom
Acrylic modeling compound is what I'd use.