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A long overdue update, and some forum entries in here, just to get my feet wet again!

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The year and a few months that have passed have, for the most part, been beneficial to the layout. I've still got about 10% of the wiring yet to go, and I've had to revise some revisions along the way, as well as bug hunt and troubleshoot those (mostly self inflicted) gremlins. I find I must get "up" for the occasions that I lie on my back on a mechanics' creeper under the layout, pulling wires to their control panel switch designations, then pulling track power from it's feed to the frogs, and so on. This is nothing new to you readers. Of course, relocating a couple of station control panels, as well as the added wiring needed to be usable as a straight DC layout, and utilizing the Train Brain on a catch as catch can crossover of systems has been interesting, cursing myself for not foreseeing the "better" method first.
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Anyway, I took retirement in June, after hanging on for months for a single part to arrive at a customer's building that no one else liked to service. The freedom has afforded much more time to work the layout. Now, jumping to the present day, I declared the layout fit for scenery and buildings on Sept. 1. Up till then there has been nothing but track, roadbed and literally a half mile of buildings, some bridges, no ballast-nothing extended above the railhead. I'm attempting to change that in a hurry. So, in the spirit of "What did you buy this Month" (well, let's go 4 weeks, +/-)-
Custom Model Railroad "Fyfe" building
Custom Model Railroad "Gas & Electric Building"
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Walthers Butterfly Station Platforms (2, adding to 1 I already had)
a dozen paint can stirring sticks (fit perfectly between Kato tracks for the Station Platforms to level up to boarding height)
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Faller Mittendorf Station (from eBay, a great deal at $30)
3 Trackside Flats background buildings (and I am impressed with the quality)
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Woodland Scenics Sicken Tire building (to become the coach yard commissary)
Ric's Old Style Highway surface and several of the posts sections
Got a dummy EMD E-2a on a LifeLike B frame that doesn't fit or stay on in place. No accessible front coupler, either. But it's painted for UP COSF and pretty unique.
Oh, and a large Matte board-to become the Chicago Union Station Headhouse, among other projects.

I also dug out all the kits and parts I had stashed away over the years (decades), and started with what I understood to be a difficult kit-Central Valley's 150' modern Truss Bridge. And of course I had to kit-bash right from the start. The method they described to install the Code 55 rail into the bridge tie part was not well suited for my XXL sized hands, so I substituted a piece of Micro Tech bridge flex track, having to cut in the spaces for the cross bearers as well as to fit my existing 1" x 3" douglas fir stand-in from initial build of the layout. Decent, not perfect, but it'll do. One good thing to come out of this first kit project was my wife donating her extra OTT light w/fan for the duration, since the garage I work in was dancing the needle at ~92 on the thermometer on the wall beside me.
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Well, I've caught up enough for my return to the blog for now. I hope I didn't get into TL;DR (too long-don't/didn't read) territory.
Tomorrow, I learn to grout N scale Bricks!

Hope to stay in touch more frequently. I know I will be scanning old 'How-To' forum entries for the foreseeable future.
Thanks for stopping by to read this tale!
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  1. Albey25's Avatar
    Good read! As a fellow blogger I'll be watching for updates.
  2. Woody709acy's Avatar
    Thanks!. I passed on the grouting lesson today, instead deciding to paint some window frames on DPM kits. I stopped at three. Reset my thinking, and have been masking off brick walls so I can spray the 4 buildings instead. Right or wrong, I'll go with straight lines and edges evenly coated over shaky looking unevenly brush stroked attempts.