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Version 5 of The CB&Q in Wyoming

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  • Member since
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  • From: Dearborn Station
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Posted by richhotrain on Monday, March 1, 2021 11:30 PM

Dave, it is all my fault. Laugh

In a different thread, I challenged Mark's use of the term "it's a waste of money" and Mark wasn't exactly pleased. So, when you commented on the intro to his video with less than effusive praise, I kiddingly suggested to Mark that he shouldn't stand for it.  Cool

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by hon30critter on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 12:03 AM

Hi Mark,

I said I would shut up about your video introduction, but I feel compelled to respectfully make one more comment. This is entirely based on my own initial reaction to the video. I claim no expertise in the field of keeping peoples' attention:

You are about to embark on creating a series of YouTube videos. If you want them to have any impact you will want to make the first video as sharp and entertaining as possible. That will entice people to want to watch the future videos. Most people will not be inclined to watch a 'talking head' for more than a few seconds. If you are lucky they will skip ahead like I did to get to the good parts. Otherwise they will move on to other videos. In other words, if you don't significantly catch their attention right at the beginning, they might not be inclined to follow your YouTube channel.

How to do that is another question. I think that your skills with creating summary screens could be put to use at the beginning so that the screen changes regularly instead of just showing your face (not that there is anything wrong with your face - you are a handsome dude Thumbs Up), perhaps interspersed with scenes of the layout and the plan.

These are just my thoughts. They are not intended to disparage your work. I would hate to see you go to all that work without gaining an audience.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

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  • From: Dearborn Station
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Posted by richhotrain on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 5:42 AM

Let me give Mark my take on his most recent video and his intent to create a series of videos.

The entire video runs for 24 minutes and 48 seconds. Mark appears throughout the first 3 minutes, 33 seconds. Is the video too long? Is Mark's appearance too long? Does the entire video hold the viewer's interest? In my opinion, the answers are all subjective.

I think that it all depends upon two issues. One, how interested will a viewer be in a nearly 25 minute tutorial on researching the prototype? Two, how interested will a viewer be in the building of Casper Yard? For me, the two issues are intertwined. Even if I don't care all that much about Casper Yard in Wyoming, I may care about the BRC's Clearing Yard in Chicago, for example. What would it take to replicate the yard and how much selective compression will be required to simulate the prototype railroad on my layout?

Is a 25 minute too long? Maybe, yes. Maybe, no. If it's boring, then 5 minutes is too long. If it is interesting and informative, it could be even longer.

Is Mark's 3 1/2 minutes too long? In this particular video, that appearance is all at the beginning of the video, and the appearance represents just over 14 percent of the entire video. Now, I have watched "tutorial" videos, both longer and shorter than Mark's video, where the narrator puts me to sleep. I have watched other tutorial videos where the narrator blabs on and on and on until I forget why I am even watching the video. 

In the case of Mark's video, his physical appearance has neutral impact and his voice has a professional, knowledgeable tone. So, those first 3 1/2 minutes are entirely acceptable in setting up what is to follow. But, the viewer has to be interested enough in the content to sit through a nearly 25 minute video. If the viewer is interested enough in the content of the video, he won't be disappointed in this video in my opinion.

Rich 

 

Alton Junction

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Posted by Pruitt on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 9:58 AM

Dave, Rich,

I appreciate all your comments. Really.

And I honestly agree that the intro was too long. But I had to lay the groundwork for not only the first episode, but also the entire series, right up front. I probably should have gone back and re-recorded the intro, tightening it up significantly. But I didn't.

I was (and am) not upset, Dave. You do not have to shut up, ever. Your commentary has been very kind in the past, and your criticism of my intro isn't unkind. It's well thought out, and very valid. Like you, I'm also one of those guys that gives the talking heads the old heave-ho after a very short period of time. So thanks for your honest feedback. It will help with future videos.

Rich, saying my physical appearance has a neutral impact is maybe the nicest thing anyone has said to me in years! LaughLaughLaugh (Dave, "handsome dude"? You're overdue for your appointment with your optometrist).

Seriously, I was concerned at the overall length of the video, because I easily lose interest in videos that long. But I wanted to cover the subject thoroughly. To offset the length, I  added in some (what I think are) snazzy graphic effects to keep up the interest. The particle building logo in the intro screen (which taxed the heck out of my computer - it took between five and ten minutes to render each second of that opening shot) and the lines following the route on the maps, for example.

And now this post is too long. I'm getting into bad habits!

Anyway, thanks again everyone (including you, Bear Clown) for your comments.

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Posted by richhotrain on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 10:21 AM

Pruitt

Rich, saying my physical appearance has a neutral impact is maybe the nicest thing anyone has said to me in years! 

LOL x LOL

Mark, I can assure you that I spent more time fashioning that remark than the entire remainder of my reply.

I was not about to start a bromance, but some comment seemed warranted.

Should I stop there?  Methinks so. Kisses

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by Pruitt on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 11:38 AM

richhotrain
Should I stop there?  Methinks so. Kisses

Rich

You're a wise man. Zip it!

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  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 11:02 AM

3 March 2021

I just published my latest layout update:

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Posted by Doughless on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 12:08 PM

Very nice work.  And nice video, as always.  Thanks for sharing.

- Douglas

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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 7:56 PM

Hi Mark,

That's a good video. I'm glad that you are documenting your mistakes as well as your successes. A lot of people will learn from that, including me!

Cheers!!

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Tuesday, March 9, 2021 11:34 PM

Thanks, Douglas and Dave.

9 March 2021

About a week ago I started building the HO Loading Tanks kit I mentioned in my March update.

Work has been slow as I've never built a wooden kit before (though I did scratchbuild a station out of wood about 30 years ago). I also jut took a couple days off from model railroading altogether.

First order of business was to assemble and paint the tanks themselves. These are actually plastic.

Finally, after several days of not really much progress, I had the base painted and assembled and the detail parts mounted to the tanks. Today I glued the tanks to the base and started adding the piping.

And I started building the handrails for the tank top platform.

So far I'm really enjoying putting this kit together!

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Posted by hon30critter on Wednesday, March 10, 2021 12:13 AM

Pruitt
So far I'm really enjoying putting this kit together!

That's great Mark! I look forward to seeing the finished product.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

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  • From: A Comfy Cave, New Zealand
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Posted by "JaBear" on Wednesday, March 10, 2021 2:36 AM

Pruitt
I also just took a couple days off from model railroading altogether.

Wot!!!

"One difference between pessimists and optimists is that while pessimists are more often right, optimists have far more fun."

  • Member since
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  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, March 14, 2021 1:32 PM

Thanks, Dave!

Bear, yes I really did. Please forgive me. Embarrassed

14 March 2021

In between steps building the vertical tanks, I added a bit more ground cover and static grass to the CNW line over Casper. I'm now almost to the corner (click on the photos for larger views).

I also realized I put the dirt road in the east end of the yard right where the Ice House has to go, so I started preparations to relocate it. I wetted the area in the distance to loosen the dirt in order to scrape it off.

But mostly I worked on the tanks. Here's the upper platform built up and brushed with Hunter's Weathering wash:

I expected that the ladder would be a real pain, because it's built up completely from stripwood. But the instructions were very clear and provided a process that made it pretty easy. Here are the rungs laid out on the template, ready for the side rails to be attached.

And here's the finished ladder.

While it took a couple of hours to complete, the build was very straightforward. Modern plastic kit manufacturers could take some lessons in making instruction sheets from these older wood kits.

Yesterday I weathered the tanks, and placed the now-painted platform on top. The weathering is pretty garish at this point because I haven't completed the "toning down" steps yet. I did that after I took this shot.

Today I permanently attached the platform and ladder, essentially completing the tanks. I plopped the unit onto the Hudson benchwork and flanked it with a couple of trucks for this shot.

Then I took this wider shot to include the temporary Hudson depot.

This may look okay when the rest of the scenery is done in this area! I just set the tanks here to get a shot of them, but I kind of like them in this location. They may stay.

I haven't built the small filling shed that accompanies the tanks yet. I'll do that in a few days, after I finish relocating the dirt road.

I've never built a kit like this before, and it came out much better than I expected, even given how rough the wooden assemblies are when viewed up close. It was a lot of fun! I'm really stoked to build the east Casper structures at this point.

  • Member since
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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, March 14, 2021 8:53 PM

The tank kit looks good Mark.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
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  • From: A Comfy Cave, New Zealand
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Posted by "JaBear" on Monday, March 15, 2021 1:54 AM

Sitting by Bear, on Flickr

"One difference between pessimists and optimists is that while pessimists are more often right, optimists have far more fun."

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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Monday, March 15, 2021 2:02 AM

Thank you Bear for all of your very entertaining cartoon answers! You always manage to brighten our days.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

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Posted by NorthBrit on Monday, March 15, 2021 6:30 AM

Lovely modeling, Mark.  Well worth a Beartoon.

 

David

To the world you are someone.    To someone you are the world

I cannot afford the luxury of a negative thought

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  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Wednesday, March 17, 2021 11:33 PM

Thanks, Dave and David!

Bear, what can I say? I'm glad you're comfortable leaning against that old station house. I'd be worried it would fall over if I did that.

17 March 2021

Well doggone it! I knew I shouldn't have been eating that creamsicle over the layout!

That is, of course, the bare (ouch!) beginnings of a dirt grade crossing. It's colored plaster (okay, I could have done a bit better on the color. Believe it or not, that was brown pigment). I'll sand that smooth, shape the edges and cut the flangeways, then paint it a more respectable tannish brown. After that will come the dirt layers.

Then you can laugh! Embarrassed

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Posted by hon30critter on Friday, March 19, 2021 12:13 AM

Pruitt
Well doggone it! I knew I shouldn't have been eating that creamsicle over the layout!

Hi Mark,

I hope you washed your face and hands after eating the creamsicle!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaugh If it was me, I'd have it spilled all down my shirt too.Dunce

Seriously, you are off to a good start, and the gravel will probably correct any colour problems once it is applied.

I am enjoying learning about how you are doing things. Hopefully I will be at that stage in a few months.

Cheers!!

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, March 21, 2021 10:05 AM

quote user="hon30critter"]I hope you washed your face and hands after eating the creamsicle!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaugh If it was me, I'd have it spilled all down my shirt too.Dunce

Seriously, you are off to a good start, and the gravel will probably correct any colour problems once it is applied.

I am enjoying learning about how you are doing things. Hopefully I will be at that stage in a few months.

Cheers!!

Dave[/quote]Yeah, it was quite a mess! Embarrassed

(Thanks for the kind words.)

21 March 2021

Well, the dirt crossing is finished, except for weeds, ballasting the track on either side, and a bit of detailing. Here's the truck with bear making one of the first crossings. That guy shows up everywhere! 

A few of the interim steps...

Here's what it looked like after the Creamsicle drippings dried and I carved and shaved them down with a putty knife:

And after the first layer of dirt went on:

Then the flageways were cut and the top scraped clean to just below the rail tops.

If I'd painted it a concrete color at this point, I'd have had a decent cement grade crossing. But I wanted a dirt crossing, mommy! Crying

So another layer of dirt and a bit more cleanup and I got what I wanted in the top photo.

I also added a couple new pieces of rolling stock to the layout. One was this RTR Bowser covered hopper. The story behind this ugly beast is that a brand new flood loader at the almost-as-new bentonite plant in Lovell came on line, and this was the test car. The chutes didn't close when they were supposed to, and nearly the entire car got buried in the bentonite! There was a half-hearted attempt to rinse it off, and this was the result. Over time rain will clean a bit more of it off, but the car will always look like some disaster overtook it from now on.

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Posted by NorthBrit on Sunday, March 21, 2021 10:32 AM

Looking really good,  Mark.  Well done.

 

David

To the world you are someone.    To someone you are the world

I cannot afford the luxury of a negative thought

  • Member since
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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, March 21, 2021 10:52 PM

Hi Mark,

The dirt crossing came out really well!

I like the covered hopper a lot too! I have a bunch of CP and TH&B slab sided hoppers that will get a similar treatment. The cars were all black and the white stains on the prototypes really stood out.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
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  • From: Dearborn Station
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Posted by richhotrain on Monday, March 22, 2021 7:25 AM

hon30critter

The dirt crossing came out really well!

I like the covered hopper a lot too! 

Same here, Mark. As Dave says, the dirt crossing came out really well, and that "weathered" covered hopper looks terrific.

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by Pruitt on Friday, March 26, 2021 11:21 AM

Thanks David, Dave and Rich. I wasn't at all sure about that hopper ...

26 March 2021

Since my last post I shifted my attention away from the crossing and began working on the CNW line above Casper again. I finished the static grass nearly into the corner (the backdrop looks odd from this angle, but you'll never be able to see it this way once Casper's in place):

Then I started working my way around the corner and into Hudson. I filled in the benchwork grid with 1/2" styrofoan insulation, covered it with masking tape and created a very low rise along the backdrop behind Hudson itself. I painted all of that a tan color.

Then I mixed up a thinish batch of paster of paris (tinted with brown tempera paint) and slathered that over most of the painted area:

I haven't done the rest yet because I still have to install the siding.

Remember a couple years ago when I tried to start scenicking the Casper classification tracks? Yeah, this mess:

Well, since I couldn't do any more on the CNW line until the plaster dries overnight, and since I wasn't in the mood to start building that old Model Hobbies structure I'm going to use for Rocky Mountain Drilling Co., I decided it was time to give this another go. Hang on to your hats!

I stripped off the tape that was protecting track from the scenery work and cleaned up the debris. A lot of very bright white plaster had seeped under the edges of the tape, and in between ties. Oy vey!

It looked worse in person than it does in this photo. At this point I've learned to always tint the plaster. 

I chipped it out using a small screwdriver (a much easier task than I anticipated), then made a wash of tempera brown paint and stained the remaining white edges of the plaster. At this point it looks like this:

Next step is to apply (and re-apply) ballast, then darken the brown stain with black tempera. After that we'll see where we are. 

I'm thinking it might be best to chip out all the old ballast to start with, since it was kind of a mess. What do you think? Your ideas, thoughts and suggestions about what will work here and what won't are very welcome for this part of the project.

  • Member since
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  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Friday, March 26, 2021 6:46 PM

Well I'm sure learning a lot about what not to do! That thin, brushed-on coat of plaster of paris I applied to the painted substrate on the line near Hudson didn't stick to the paint at all! It just started crumbling off! I expected it to adhere to the latex paint. It just lifts away, braking into flakes as it comes up. I'll post a few photos later.

Anyone have any idea what I'm doing wrong?

  • Member since
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  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
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Posted by Pruitt on Friday, March 26, 2021 7:47 PM

So here's what it's looking like right now:

I'm stumped.

HELP!

  • Member since
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Posted by richhotrain on Saturday, March 27, 2021 7:17 AM

Pruitt

Well I'm sure learning a lot about what not to do! That thin, brushed-on coat of plaster of paris I applied to the painted substrate on the line near Hudson didn't stick to the paint at all! It just started crumbling off! I expected it to adhere to the latex paint. It just lifts away, braking into flakes as it comes up.  

I would use Hydrocal instead of plaster of paris. Hydrocal is lighter and it doesn't chip or peel as easily as plaster of paris.

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, March 28, 2021 6:33 PM

Thanks for the thoughts, Rich.

I've looked all over town - nobody around here carries hydrocal. I'll have to order it online. Meanwhile I've put together a test panel where I'll try painted, painted and sanded, and unpainted tape (plust a bit of untaped bare styrofoam) with patching plaster, and a bit thicker coat of plaster of paris. I've just applied the plasters, so tomorrow evening if they're dry I'll see how all those variations fare.

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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Monday, March 29, 2021 4:23 AM

Hi Mark,

Like I said previously, I'm learning from your mistakes! However, that doesn't mean that you have to keep making them just for my benefit!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaughClown

Seriously, I do have a question. It looks like you tinted the Plaster of Paris before applying it. Is that correct? If so, did you use paint or just pigment? If you used paint I'm wondering if it interferred with the ability of the plaster to set properly. Years ago I was trying to make a bird bath out of concrete. I had a bunch of powdered Tempura paints left over from when the kids were young so I figured that I could colour the concrete with the paint powder. Bad idea! The concrete never set! What a mess!

I'd really like to see this puzzle solved. Would you consider starting a thread specific to this issue? That might get people with direct experience involved.

Cheers!!

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
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  • 127 posts
Posted by Lakeshore Sub on Monday, March 29, 2021 9:49 AM

Hi Mark,

One thing that you might want to try is to pre-wet the surface that you are applying the plaster to.   I've found that plaster(especially plaster of Paris) dries too quickly without additional water on the surface it needs to adhere to.  Doesn't need to be soaking wet.

Since I've got lots of different surfaces(plywood, foam, hardboard) on the layout, I stopped using plaster and only use Scultamold which has a longer drying time but needs the same type of surface prep and seems to stick to everything.

Scott Sonntag

 

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