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Power Plant Scene

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Power Plant Scene
Posted by railandsail on Thursday, December 5, 2019 12:16 PM

The right hand, lower corner, of my layout plan has been the recipient of a number of ideas for structures,...first there was the Balt city backdrop, then this steel mill scene,..

then more recently the Allied Rail Rebuilders. Ahhh, the old musical chairs game.
 

Change is in the air, I've moved the Rail Rebuilders out in front of the double mainline stone arch bridge, and this has opened up that back corner for new ideas.

A power plant scene sounds like a good one,...to power up the city of Balt that lies across that back wall and over into the left hand corner.Now I would have a repository for my coal cars. Perhaps if a lot (or most) of the power plant itself were painted on the backdrop, I could include the electric substation in the open space out front, along with a heavy duty crane installing a big transformer it was unloading form a transformer carrying car?? I have all of these models.

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Posted by railandsail on Thursday, December 5, 2019 12:18 PM

Walther's Northern Lights kit

This is that back corner where I am considering the power plant scene,...

That paper dwg leaning against the wall is a pic of the Allied Rail Rebuilders structure that I have now moved out to the front of the arch bridge span.

That frees up that corner and its two walls for a power plant scene.

Suppose I could have a good size coal image on some portion of the wall?

Suppose I were to cut Walther's Northern Lights structure in half and mount them against the wall to make it look like a larger plant?

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Posted by hornblower on Thursday, December 5, 2019 1:52 PM

railandsail
Suppose I were to cut Walther's Northern Lights structure in half and mount them against the wall to make it look like a larger plant?

This is the way I would go as I did this with a Walthers Greatland Sugar kit.  Since the long rear wall would not be seen in its planned location, I carefully grafted the two long walls together end-to-end. I then cut a matching rear wall from plain styrene sheet.  I did the same to the two kit supplied roof panels to make the front half of the roof and again substituted plain styrene sheet for the rear half of the roof. The result is a rather imposing building that truly looks large enough to be rail served.  

I also have to add a power plant to my layout.  Unfortunately, the prototype looks nothing like any of the power plant kits available so I will have to scratch build it.  On the other hand, it was only supposed to be under construction at the time period my layout is set in so I don't have to build the complete structure.  

Hornblower

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Posted by jjdamnit on Thursday, December 5, 2019 3:35 PM

Hello All,

Because of the limited access under my pike, I have had to place the booster on top of the pike.

I needed a way to disguise, or camouflage, the booster. I also needed access to the booster for maintenance. 

My first attempt was to fabricate a modern power plant out of cardboard with a bank of cooling units; made from cardboard tubes.

It looked alright but a modern power plant just didn't seem to fit the theme of my pike.

Then I looked at the Walther's kit. This is a fantastic kit for both our needs.

According to the footprint of the kit it was too small to fit over the booster.

My thought was to take two (2) kits and kitbash them together to get the structure I needed.

railandsail
Suppose I were to cut Walther's Northern Lights structure in half and mount them against the wall to make it look like a larger plant?

Because I needed a rectangular structure here's what I ended up using;

  • Out of the eight (8) wall panels I used six (6):
  • I spliced the two (2) wall panels with the large doors together
  • Out of the four (4) remaining wall panels, I used two (2) for the end walls of the structure

To splice the walls together I did not sand the ends flush. I used 90º strip styrene to fill the angled joints. This provided a strong splice.

Using pieces of the sprue I replicate downspouts along the seams.

Because I required that the finished building be removable I fabricated a foundation for the structure out of 1"x3/4" wood that I harvested from an old piece of furniture.

This foundation is clad in Chooch Cut Stone Wall facade. The smokestacks are attached to this foundation so when I need to remove the structure they are separate from the rest of the building.

In your situation I would suggest splicing the two (2) panels with the large doors together.

Then cut the other panel, with the banks of windows, to fit the depth you desire. Because these panels have five (5) banks of windows you can make the structure as deep or shallow as you need.

You could bring the facade out as far as the bridge (in your photo) to accommodate the necessity to spot cars in the structure.

Keep up the questions and as always...

Hope this helps.

"Uhh...I didn’t know it was 'impossible' I just made it work...sorry"

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Posted by doctorwayne on Thursday, December 5, 2019 3:42 PM

hornblower
...This is the way I would go as I did this with a Walthers Greatland Sugar kit. Since the long rear wall would not be seen in its planned location, I carefully grafted the two long walls together end-to-end. I then cut a matching rear wall from plain styrene sheet....

A lot of structure kits can benefit, on an around-the-room layout, by using the long walls on the visible side, with the unseen ones replaced using plain styrene.

I built Greatland Sugar into a longer structure, and added one of the outbuildings to it, to create a not-too-bad representation of the Tuckett Tobacco Company, in my former hometown....

I used two American Hardware kits, in the same manner, to create the Westinghouse Air Brake facility in Mount Forest...

Walthers freight house was similarly expanded...

...as was Vulcan Manufacturing, now Bertram's Machine Works...

Two George Roberts Printing factories were combined to become Wilkinson-Kompass, offering mill supplies and hardware...

All sides on it are visible, but I used some of the leftover parts, along with one of Walthers Stamping Plant kits to built Mercury Knitting Mills, another former hometown industry...

Two Walthers Waterfront Warehouse kits were used to create the P & M Languay Pump and Compressor Works...

...with the leftovers going to represent the street-side portion of the Evell Casket Company, another industry from my hometown...

Those kits came with two sets of windows (four sets total), and I used them for the otherwise scratchbuilt station, in Dunnville...

For this kit, IHC's Novelty Iron Works, I modified the two long walls to create the one visible to viewers of C.E. Bowyer's Brush & Broom Works...

I'm not sure of the origin of this one, picked-up mostly-assembled at a nearby hobbyshop, although it's definitely European...

...but a little de-construction, followed by some re-construction, yielded this longer structure...

It still needs to be finished.  I have plans for a few more reconfigured kits for the layout's upper level, too.

Wayne

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Posted by Doughless on Thursday, December 5, 2019 4:49 PM

If you prefer an older era structure, this DPM, now Woodland Scenics, kit is very shallow.  Of course, you would not have to build the back wall but could use the segments to widen it even further.  This kit is built from their modular segments, so there is a bit of a learning curve needed to align all of the walls and pilasters.

Image result for dpm ho scale power plant images"

For a more modern era, the Walthers Metro Power Kit could really be expanded sideways quite a bit if you place the back wall next to instead of behind the main structure.  But it might take some cutting of the walls to get it to align correctly.

Image result for walthers ho scale power plant images"

 

 

 

- Douglas

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Posted by hornblower on Monday, December 9, 2019 2:59 PM

Very nice work Wayne!  Very imaginative use of those various kits. It is truly amazing how large some of these structures get when the rear walls are added to the fronts.

Hornblower

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Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 7:55 AM

jjdamnit

Hello All,

Because of the limited access under my pike, I have had to place the booster on top of the pike.

I needed a way to disguise, or camouflage, the booster. I also needed access to the booster for maintenance.

What sort of 'booster'? What does that have to do with the power plant??

 

jjdamnit

My first attempt was to fabricate a modern power plant out of cardboard with a bank of cooling units; made from cardboard tubes.

It looked alright but a modern power plant just didn't seem to fit the theme of my pike.

Then I looked at the Walther's kit. This is a fantastic kit for both our needs.

According to the footprint of the kit it was too small to fit over the booster.

My thought was to take two (2) kits and kitbash them together to get the structure I needed.

more text description....



Have you got some photos, and or links to same.? While your description is nicely done, a photo or 2 would really help see this doubled up Walthers kit

 

 

 

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Posted by SPSOT fan on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 10:12 AM

railandsail

  

A bit of an aside, but while reading throgh this thread I see potetial reach issues, both over that viaduct to reach where the building might be, and also under the bridge there where there look to be switches and therefore a need for uncoupling. It is hard to say, it may be less of in issue in person than it appears in the image.

Just something the OP might want to consider before he lays anything permanently in that section of the layout, such as the planed power plant!

Regards, Isaac

I model my railroad and you model yours! I model my way and you model yours!

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Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 10:33 PM

The reach issues you expressed there are real concerns. Its a long reach (too long) even for my very long arms. I had in the back of my mind that those items that would be placed in that corner would be attached to base plates of foam board that could be extractable from the corner in order to aded details, etc.

OR that corner needs to be completed prior to placing the stone arch bridge in place?

I've modified the track design in that corner such that their are no switches under that bridge. But you are not going to believe what I am considering placing there....Surprise

 

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Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 11:07 PM

Time for a Curve Ball

Oops, .....this morning I unpacked and was taking photos of the coke structures that were part of that steel mill scene I bought a few years ago. I figured I might as well sell this structure off as there is no way I would have room for it down near my steel mill. I had never really looked at one of these coke plants that closely, nor considered utilizing one on my layout.

BUT I got to thinking, that being another coal consumer, would this structure fit into that corner along with the coal fired power plant?....just maybe? It is a pretty interesting structure that could stand on its own rather than being directly attached to the steel mill.

So here is a little mock-up I did,..



 


I'm liking it,...even while I will be accused of 'too much' in a small space

 

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Posted by mbinsewi on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 6:51 AM

railandsail
I'm liking it,...even while I will be accused of 'too much' in a small space

That hasn't stopped you yet, Brian! Laugh  Build it your way.

Waiting to see a train run.

Mike.

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Posted by nealknows on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 9:16 AM

Wayne,

Your Westinghouse Of Canada looks fantastic! You gave me some great inspiration for a structure to add to my layout. 

Thanks for sharing!

Neal

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Posted by SPSOT fan on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 10:08 AM

railandsail

The reach issues you expressed there are real concerns.

Glad you noticed that!

I notice you do a lot of planing in the actual space! That is actually a really great option as now you can physically walk up to an area and touch (on in this case, have trouble touching!) the layout.

I have noticed whenever I’m around someone building a layout, changes are always made once you’ve laid out the layout in a real space!

Regards, Isaac

I model my railroad and you model yours! I model my way and you model yours!

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Posted by doctorwayne on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 11:21 AM

Hornblower and Neal, thank you both for your kind words, and I hope that you'll both forgive my belated response.

Wayne

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Posted by Slowmodem on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 11:55 AM

Wayne, those are excellent buildings and pictures!  I am just starting out and still thinking about how to build my set.  I want to build a model of the powerhouse where I work.  I had considered using some of the Walthers powerhouses and putting them together into one powerhouse, but your knitting mill looks very much like the powerhouse I'm wanting to build.  Since I'm just starting, it will probably be a while before I can do complicated structures like that.  But I see that in my future.  Thanks for sharing your work.

 

I thought I had more pictures of the powerhouse, but these are the best pictures I have (right now) of where I work.

Greg Whitehead

Ironically, I live in the only county in Tennessee with no railroad tracks.

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Posted by Slowmodem on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 12:47 PM

While I'm here, I thought I'd add a couple of pictures of some of the rail yards around the plant.  A 9-Unit coal-fired plant takes lots and lots of coal.

This is the unloading facility.  The cars dump the coal into an underground hopper.  Belts under the hopper move the coal up to the coal towers where the coal goes into the pile on the right, or using another belt moves to the pile on the left.


 

A different view of the unloader building.


After the unloader, the train can go to the north rail yard.

 

Another view of the north yard.



 

There's probably several miles of track around there.  If I had to guess, I'd say there's room to store several thousand cars.  I don't have a picture of the south rail yard.  It's similar to the north yard.

Greg Whitehead

Ironically, I live in the only county in Tennessee with no railroad tracks.

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Posted by doctorwayne on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 1:33 PM

Thanks for your kind words, Greg. 

I had originally bought two of Walthers' older style (brick) powerhouse kits, with the intention of using them in my upper staging yard, as I wanted to run dedicated coal trains on the challenging grades of my layout.
The plan was to use all four long walls, and perhaps two of the end walls on the visible side, with the other two adding some implied depth to the structure at the backdrop. 

However, it would have eliminated two tracks, so I decided to leave it unmodelled.

I gave the two kits to a friend, who built them in the same manner as I had intended, and he also used them as a backdrop structure, but designated it as a foundry.  While it's supposedly rail-served, there was no room for a visible siding, and its in- and out-bound cars simply go to a semi-hidden staging yard.

To splice structures together, the main aim is to make the pieces look like they belong, so for curtainwall structures like my knitting mill or the Westinghouse factory, all that's needed is to remove one of the vertical "concrete" sections on one end of one wall, then use fairly heavy sheet styrene on the interior as a splice-plate.

I use .060" sheet styrene, bought in 4'x8' sheets, which is much cheaper than the same stuff intended for hobby use.  The seller simply rolls it to a manageable size and tapes it, so you don't need a pick-up truck to get it home.  Besides being useful for the splicing, it also works great for making those blank unseen walls, and for new, lengthened, roofs, and also for bracing to keep your larger structures' shape.

Here's Languay's Pump & Compressor factory lifted from its spot in Dunnville...

...which shows its partially-modelled ground floor, which is the only street-front portion visible when it's on the layout.

This view shows how the sheet styrene braces the structure (I deliberately tapered the building to allow its rail siding to be not parallel to the layout's fascia)...

 

The structures built using DPM modular wall sections, in downtown Dunnville...

...also used sheet styrene for their unseen sides and interior bracing...

...and before those structures were built, I had used the same material to model the concrete wall which fronts the elevated right-of-way through town....

 It was based on a similar wall in my hometown.

The unfinished freighthouse shown earlier also used sheet styrene for its unseen sides and roof, and for interior bracing...

To splice-together brick or stone structures which don't have pilasters separating the wall sections, you may need to either trim-off one end of one wall right back to its first windows, or, as was needed with this "stone" building, trim both walls back at the ends to be joined so that the wall's width at the splice-point is equal to that between the rest of the windows.  On this one, I had to re-carve some of the mortar joints to better-disguise the splice...

Whether you're splicing wall sections together or simply building a kit structure by following the manufacturer's instructions, an easy way to make your building a bit different from those of everyone else is to paint the doors and windows a different colour than that used for the cast parts.

On the stone factory shown above, the doors and windows were cast in dark green plastic.  To change them to white, I first masked all of the windows, still on their  sprues, to protect the gluing surfaces around each.  For most of the windows, this allowed continuous strips of masking tape (use a sharp blade in your X-Acto, and, working on a sheet of glass or other hard surface, simply slice the tape into useable widths).
I then airbrushed the visible portions with grey primer, followed with some Pollyscale white...

...and with the tape removed...



I also cemented the supplied "glass" to the backs of the windows before installing them in the structure - much easier than trying to do so with the windows installed.

Wayne

 

 

 

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Posted by railandsail on Saturday, December 14, 2019 9:26 AM

Doughless

If you prefer an older era structure, this DPM, now Woodland Scenics, kit is very shallow.  Of course, you would not have to build the back wall but could use the segments to widen it even further.  This kit is built from their modular segments, so there is a bit of a learning curve needed to align all of the walls and pilasters.

Image result for dpm ho scale power plant images"

 

I always liked the looks of that DPM kit.

Does the backside of it have those same tall windows? If so, perhaps it could be split in half and made to look larger?

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Posted by gmpullman on Saturday, December 14, 2019 1:12 PM

railandsail
Does the backside of it have those same tall windows? If so, perhaps it could be split in half and made to look larger?

One of the advantages to some DPM kits is their modular construction. Walls, windows, loading docks, etc. can all be rearranged to suit the builder. They used to sell wall sections separately.

I made my DPM power plant into a brewery.

 IMG_6657 by Edmund, on Flickr

 IMG_4637 by Edmund, on Flickr

 IMG_4634 by Edmund, on Flickr

Woodland Scenics took over DPM and I really don't know if the separate modular parts are commonly available. I had amassed a huge amount over the years and built several structures using them. 

Cheers, Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:07 PM

I just looked at Woodland Scenics, it appears they are available.

https://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/show/category/HOScaleModularSystem

https://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/show/item/35600 is the power house kit.

Mike.

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Posted by gmpullman on Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:53 PM

mbinsewi
I just looked at Woodland Scenics, it appears they are available.

Thanks, Mike. That's good news.

Some of the moldings are a bit crude but if you clean them up during assembly and make an effort to keep everything aligned they build into a nice structure.

Cheers, Ed

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Posted by railandsail on Sunday, December 15, 2019 10:24 AM

So Ed ...I see where your one side of that building has 4 of those tall windows, vs the std kit with 3 windows.

I had originally wonder about the backside of that DPM powerhouse, but as I looked closer I found there are 2 more of those windows on that backside.

 

So if one were split this kit in half to make two thinner 'flats', they could get a larger plant with as many as 5 windows on the front side.

 

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Posted by railandsail on Sunday, December 15, 2019 10:48 AM

I found a few images of power plant scene constructed with a kit bash of the Walther's kit.

 

 

I kind of like it, but I have a question. What are the one or two big bases under the original kit suppose to represent??

I think they tend to make the plant look bigger and more powerful, but what did the originial kitbasher have in mind?   Or how might they be explained, and/or re-adjusted??

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Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, December 15, 2019 12:56 PM

railandsail
So if one were split this kit in half to make two thinner 'flats', they could get a larger plant with as many as 5 windows on the front side.

That is pretty much what I did, the whole back side of my brewery is plain sheet styrene. No windows or wall panels at all. The "belfry" tower was another "kit-bash" as well.

I really don't recall if I started with the actual "Power Plant" kit or simply used it as a guide. I have buckets full of DPM modular brick pieces I've collected over the years. The tall window panels were sold as separate modular sections.

Again, with the modular wall panels, the kit instructions are simply a suggestion. You can mix and match the wall pieces in many different configurations. DPM used to supply a large information sheet with the full line of modular pieces. Some are intended to use as ground-level or shipping dock height, others were tall window sections and yet others were shorter "standard" wall height panels.

 DPM_info by Edmund, on Flickr


 

 DPM_modular by Edmund, on Flickr

Here's another "flat" I made from DPM walls:

 IMG_1346_fix_sm by Edmund, on Flickr

 Ruminski_crop1 by Edmund, on Flickr

I used a board with an attached straight edge (fence) as I cemented each floor together to keep things aligned and simply laid each floor out as desired. The pilasters between the modular sections allow you to assemble any combination of panels together.

It is imperative to sand off the "draft angle" especially on corner pieces for a true-fit. The pilasters which join the panels require some sanding, too, but not so much as to remove the brick detail.

I could have made the building taller — but that's another storey.


railandsail
What are the one or two big bases under the original kit suppose to represent?? I think they tend to make the plant look bigger and more powerful, but what did the originial kitbasher have in mind?

I can't guess what the builder had in mind at the time. I could be wrong but, arent most buildings wider toward the bottom?

 CEI_power by Edmund, on Flickr

 

 

Have Fun! Ed

 

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Posted by Doughless on Sunday, December 15, 2019 6:24 PM

railandsail

So Ed ...I see where your one side of that building has 4 of those tall windows, vs the std kit with 3 windows.

I had originally wonder about the backside of that DPM powerhouse, but as I looked closer I found there are 2 more of those windows on that backside.

 

So if one were split this kit in half to make two thinner 'flats', they could get a larger plant with as many as 5 windows on the front side.

 

 

The DPM modulars allow you to make any shape you want, provided you have enough of the modulars, and they blend well. Be careful, since each wall could be slightly different than another.

Notice near "View #2" that a ribbon of brick bisects the windows, whereas the backside first level walls have the windows above the brick ribbon.  So if you were to merely bring the back windows to the front side, see near "View #3", the windows would not line up.

DPM sells all of the modulars in packets of 4, and its amazing how many differetn walls and window combinations they make.  You would want the "street level with rectangular windows" product.  Like this:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HO-Scale-DPM-Modulars-30134-Street-Level-Rect-Windows-NIB/112883820397

 BTW, I have this power plant kit still in a sealed bag.  I count six, not five, large arched windows in the bag.  Perhaps there is an extra window and only 5 large arched brick opening walls. IMO, 5 would look better than 6 anyway.

- Douglas

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Posted by railandsail on Monday, December 16, 2019 12:12 AM

Ed,.....interesting plant photo

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Posted by gmpullman on Monday, December 16, 2019 12:23 AM

railandsail
Ed,.....interesting plant photo

I agree. Not far from where I live. Kind of what I'd call an iconic power plant.

 CEI_Bula by Edmund, on Flickr

Decomissioned about ten years ago. 

These days all you get is a big, tin box and you can't tell if it is a power plant, paper mill or a chocolate factory. Progress Whistling

Regards, Ed

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