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Thread: Piedmont Blues - O scale (2 rail) switching layout

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    Default Piedmont Blues - O scale (2 rail) switching layout

    Howdy y'all!

    I've been informed by the mods that posting this here is okay, so I thought I'd show you all what I've been up to since moving out of N scale.

    Myself and Ford - my friend and co-conspirator - have been working on a modular O scale exhibition layout set in Georgia, called Piedmont Blues (named after the musical style). At the moment it consists of three 4' scenic boards, once of which has a sector plate which extends about 8" further in a "fiddle stick" style, making the layout just shy of 13'.

    Eventually, a 5' traverser will go on the opposite end to the sector plate. After that, it will be extended with further modules which will remain in my layout room and not taken to shows, with only the original boards and traverser being truly portable.

    Photographs of the layout in the below gallery will give an idea of the current state of the layout, and it's portable form. Please do take into account that the layout is still very much a work in progress at this stage:

    https://www.nscale.net/forums/album.php?albumid=1556

    The final layout plan - including the non-portable sections, can be seen below. The curves on the layout are 36" radius, limiting locomotives to 4 axle diesels or short wheelbase steam switchers.



    Finally, a couple of photos taken from the gallery to give you an idea of what to expect when you click the link!





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    Today I've been working on the scenery on the centre board. I'd say it's about 75% complete for now. Once the scenery is done, I'll get started on the structures.


    The caboose in the photos is a Lionel 3 Rail model which I am in the process of converting to 2 rail. So far I've done the trucks, next I need to do the couplers and the underframe detail. After that it'll need to add a rooftop solar panel and battery box, then the correct paint scheme to represent a "Local" assigned cab.












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    WOW! Nice work. I really like the level of detail you can get in O scale.
    Never mistake a guy who talks a lot for a guy who has something to say...

    CH&FR Site and Blog: http://www.chfrrailroad.net and http://blog.chfrrailroad.net
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    Oooooo, very nice!
    = >

    ~ Moose (Co-founder of the Mt. Tahoma & Pacific Railroad, located some where in the Pacific Northwest)


    "Beware the Train of Thought that Carries no Freight..." "Reading is for morons who can't understand pictures..."

    Click Here to See Moose's Layout Thread

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    Quote Originally Posted by TwinDad View Post
    WOW! Nice work. I really like the level of detail you can get in O scale.
    The only drawback to that is train length - locomotive, 2 cars, caboose!

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    I really like your trackwork. I love the look of the battered well-used track.

    Yeah, you would need a warehouse to run a long unit train in O scale. Let alone the winning the lottery.
    Rob

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    Rob, a few of us here are considering FreemO, just to see if it can be done.

    Bonus for me is that PB would simply need an end board adding to make it FreemO compliant and I'd not need to change anything.

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    Weekend update time, I guess.


    Mostly I've been working on scenery for the centre board, however I've also done a bit of structure and rolling stock work.


    First up, I've turned this K-Line 3 Rail boom car...





    ...Into this 2 rail flat car:







    It still needs a brake wheel, then the lettering painting out and replacing with something more fitting - probably CB&Q




    Next, the loading dock at the back of the layout. I've been working on a building to go here, but decided instead to put a loading dock here and then potentially add the building in as a flat building by fixing it to a sheet of plywood which would bolt into the side of the benchwork once the layout is set up at shows. Mainly because space is a premium in my car, and I'm not sure I could fit the originally planned building in the car!







    Finally, we needed a way to hide the servos used to power the turnout throw bars. I made a ballast bin out of scrap wood and styrene, and a stack of ties from strips of suitable sized balsa wood.







    Close ups of the ballast bin. Stanley Knife (box cutter to Americans ) for scale.












    The hinges, latch and padlock all need painting still.


    Hopefully I can get the fencing for the lumber yard finished today.

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    Really nice work!

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    Nice looking scratchbuild items.

    One of the benefits of a larger scale.

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    Your wood weathering is FANTASTIC!

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    @kingmeow - it's just isopropyl alcohol and india ink in a jam jar. I cut the wood to sizes that I need then drop them in the jar, seal it up and give it a gentle shake, then leave it for about an hour before removing the wood with a pair of long tweezers.

    Leave it to dry on a sheet of paper towel for 30 minutes for the alcohol to evaporate.

    The wood all stains differently, so when you lay each plank it looks like real wood.

    Afterwards, paint it with whatever colour you want your walls to be. I've done it with HO and N scale stripwood too, and it works fine in any scale.

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    With the centre board almost complete, I've turned my attention back to the end board to get that finished, so I can focus my full attention on the sector plate board for the last few weeks before Bingham show.



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    I've been quiet on the layout front as of late, because I've been working on one of the more mind numbing parts of the build - laying cobbles between the rails, and carving the roadway. There's about 30" of this to do, and I'm about half way through it.
    Afterwards it'll get sand between the cobbles, then the whole thing will be getting painted and weathered. I am hoping to have it done by the end of the week.
    Once that's done, I can get get started on the Georgia Hardware Company building which will go over and around the cobbled street/tracks.
    Between these, I'll be working on ground cover on this module, which will hopefully complete the basic scenery for the whole layout, and with loads of time to get it done ready for the Bingham show in 10 days time.

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    Bingham show is now over, and it was a truly great little exhibition. Definitely worth the visit for the public, I think.


    Piedmont Blues did us proud. With only small issues of dirty track and an overexited servo powering one of the turnouts, plus rusty wheels on the RS3 and GP35 needing a good clean, the show went really well.


    All the minor issues were fixed respectively with a thorough cleaning with a block of wood and some isoproyl alcohol, disconnecting the servo and operating the turnout by hand for 20 minutes to allow it to cool down, and then running the layout using the Plymouth switcher for a while whilst the two 4 axle locos had their wheels serviced.


    Not many changes were made to the layout whilst we were at the show - with the exception of a couple of crossed ties at the end of the Georgia Hardware spur to stop cars running off the end of the layout.


    Instead, we were focused on taking turns running trains, and whilst one of us was doing that, Ford would work on lighting the buildings, and I was working on freight car projects.


    Speaking of:





    With the exception of adding the running numbers to the car ends, this one is now ready for weathering. Hopefully I'll have that done, and a full loose load of woodchips done by Seaboard Southern in September.


    The car was set up on the end of our layout tables as a display piece for the public.





    We're planning to have a full information display ready for September as well, showing prototype photographs of the area we are modelling.


    On the subject of photographs, here are a bunch I took showing the layout set up in it's (current) entirity...

























    More pictures to come. Lots to do between now and September, but before anything can happen with the layout, I need to finalise purchase of my new house and get moved in, as I'll have the space to have the layout set up permanently so I can work on it.

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    What a superb layout, Daniel! The scenes draw me in, then I see a Southern high-nose Geep 35, and that's icing on the cake.

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    I think if I ever stop with N (or maybe as a side deal anyway) I would go O scale.

    It captures the MASS of the trains so well.

    N scale is like a wide angle lens. O scale is like a zoom lens. It’s all good.

    In your case, VERY good!
    Never mistake a guy who talks a lot for a guy who has something to say...

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    @danielb,

    You know there is room to do both n-scale and O-scale right?

    I think I actually own more O stuff than I own HO. I only have one O-scale locomotive, a Pacific, which my great grandfather built from a kit in the 1950s.

    I have plans to build an O-scale switching layout some day. I even went to the trouble of gathering all the O-scale buildings from my parents house from the Lionel layout I had as a kid in the 1980s. ( I still have all the Lionel stuff too. A combination of my sets from the 1980s and My dad’s from the 1950s. )

    So what are you using for turnouts?

    Paul
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    Unfortunately, N scale is just too small for me. I'm future planning - build in O and HO scales now, and when I'm old I won't have the issue of not being able to see my trains anymore! :P

    Turnouts are scratchbuilt from rail and PCB ties.

    I hear you on the older models, I've got so many of the 1950's era cardboard boxcar sides that I'm planning to scratchbuild a sizeable fleet of cars from. Why waste money on buying expensive modern freight cars, when I can just build them myself?

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