The PRR Chartiers Branch - Progress Report - 2014-11 Report
11/23/2014
11/23/2014
Back in August I made ten new "foreground" trees. As I did last year at that time, I used those trees for the Fall train shows in which our club participates. Now that the Fall shows are over with, I am permanently planting them on my layout. In between the shows I just poked a hole in the layout's scenery base and put the trees there. Those were just temporary places, but they did teach me something. This was that the tall trees can get in the way of operations. As an example are the two trees that are the subject of the next photo. The track near the back of the layout sees a lot of coupling/uncoupling action when I am operating the layout. So, planting a tree in front of that space was a real pain. So, when it came time to permanently plant the trees, I put one in the back and a second to its left, but far enough to the left so as to leave lots of open space for where the coupling/uncoupling takes place.
2014-11 Report
The previous photo showed the two trees glued into place. I used Elmers white glue for that. This keeps the trees in position, but makes it possible to remove them from the layout. The next photo shows how I blended the tree's roots in with the rest of the scenery. Previously I had used Sculptamold to add more ground surface to make it appear as if the roots are blended into the ground. This time I chose to use the simpler method of just adding more ground cover bushes.
2014-11 Report
I planted this tree in the foreground by the Chartiers creek.
2014-11 Report
I then trimmed its roots flush with the front edge of the layout, and then covered the open space around the roots with more ground foam.
2014-11 Report
The next photo shows a tree I just planted and glued into position. With the tree-making method I use, the roots remain somewhat flexible, so I can shape them to fit the scenery. I use the metal weights to hold them in position while the glue sets.
2014-11 Report
And, again, I trimmed the roots and covered most of them with ground cover. It has been a while since my last report on my layout. This is due to two reasons. One, I had a lot of work to do for our club's modules and preparations for the three shows we did this Fall. Second, I started a new module, which involved a lot of experimenting with different construction methods. Also, I had started building another structure for the layout. However, I brought that under-construction building to the club shows, where it suffered some substantial damage during the transportation, so that project had to be scrapped. After several months of trying to live with the new S-scale Sergent Engineering couplers, I realized that they were a significant hindrance to my operational fun-factor of the layout. So I am now in the process of replacing those couplers with my previous fleet standard, the Walthers ProtoMax HO-scale coupler. Due to some rearranging in the household, I could no longer afford the space in the closet, so the 2'x4' module that I had in there has been removed. I made a temporary support to allow the 2-foot bridge I had connecting it with the main layout to continue to be used. This allows me to continue to do switching work in the Washington area.
2014-11 Report