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 B&M Eastern Route progress

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
jbvb Posted - 01/31/2008 : 8:10:46 PM
I'm modeling the Boston & Maine's Eastern Route in HO standard gauge in my 207-year-old house's attic. The attic has its pluses and minuses - plenty of space, just up the stairs and finished, but the combination of the sloping ceiling and a 36" minimum radius meant I could only do an around-the-walls plan. Also, it can get a bit hot in the summer and cold in the winter.

The layout incorporates my Rowley MA modules, presently the only finished scenery, in the rural northern half of the attic. The southeast corner is where I'm building my compressed version of West Lynn, MA including the General Electric River works and the West Lynn creamery.

This photo shows the mainline curve passing the future creamery (spur under the file) and the Saugus Branch (long staging tracks) coming in from the left. I'm spiking rail on the branch, building the switch comes next. The flying plywood is actually pretty rigid with the flange below and the backdrop partially installed, it will get better when I bring the backdrop around to the left edge of the photo.
15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
jbvb Posted - 10/03/2018 : 2:56:09 PM
Bumped because I rediscovered a post about fixing up Con-Cor P-54 coaches.

Thanks, Ted. Pete, Newburyport in that era was pretty safe: bar fights but gunshots only in hunting season, an occasional B&E but no muggings. Some domestics got reported, most didn't.
quartergauger48 Posted - 09/24/2018 : 1:45:53 PM
That is a nice shot, JBVB'...
Orionvp17 Posted - 09/23/2018 : 8:42:04 PM
OK, I'm cool with that. As long as you stay safe down there!

in Michigan
jbvb Posted - 09/22/2018 : 10:58:42 AM
Thanks, Pete, Mike & Dave. The same shot in 'daylight' isn't pretty - unfinished scenery, the ceiling looming over, fluorescent tubes in the background, so I'm pleased with my inspiration. And Pete, at that hour of the night, most of the 'not so outstanding citizens' in that neighborhood were either in Jake's, or the Flying Yankee next to the station (24 Winter St., 3rd or 4th down on the scratchbuilding list).
deemery Posted - 09/22/2018 : 10:28:35 AM
That sounds like a really effective fix in Bexley Yard.

Michael Hohn Posted - 09/22/2018 : 10:19:12 AM

Your photo is almost abstract in its contrast and simplicity. Very nice.

I wish I could have been in Mahwah; I considered attending but had a conflict.

Orionvp17 Posted - 09/22/2018 : 09:57:08 AM
Good call on the tracks, James! Your operators will no doubt be pleased.

As to the photo... Cool! Very cool! Like!

I need to get things to where I can photograph something and be pleased with what I have.... Yes, I could begin to see "The Vision" come alive in my head when the guys were over the other night, but that's al in "my head" and no one else can really see it....

Just be careful wandering around in that area at night. I hear there are some folks who aren't what you'd call "outstanding citizens" lurking around up there....

Nice pic!

in Michigan
jbvb Posted - 09/21/2018 : 10:23:14 PM
Thank you, Pete and James. One of the things I'm looking for is color photos of Lynn, Malden, Medford, Somerville from before maybe 1975 (when many started getting re-sided with aluminum or vinyl). I need them for my backdrop in the urban part of the layout. Do you have any neighborhood shots?

After I got back from Mahwah, I sat down to fix a problem with Bexley Yard that bedeviled some of my operators:

I'd built Bexley with a block boundary in the middle (purple line across the body of the yard above), so switching could be done from both ends simultaneously. When I installed power districts, this became a district boundary too. But operators didn't have a reflex for their loco stopping in the middle, particularly when it made the PSX-1s at each end of the yard feep simultaneously.

Here I've added new gaps at the fouling points and independent feeders to each body track. So locos can run the whole length of each track, and only get feeped at by one PSX when a turnout hasn't been lined.

And finally, I had an arty inspiration:

I stopped at Jake's on my way home from second shift at Towle, but I didn't stay long. When I got to Strong St. the 'Theater Train' was sitting in the station. I set my camera on the roof of a parked car and tried a few time exposures - this one came out OK.

The home signal was 'three red', but there was nothing inbound from Portsmouth at this hour of the night. I asked around the next day and found out the draw was stuck.
James Cubie Posted - 09/20/2018 : 08:25:24 AM
Grew up in East Lynn, remember those wooden 3 deckers well. Now model the Central Vermont (my other home area)
Orionvp17 Posted - 08/30/2018 : 9:40:07 PM
And here I thought I was making progress by "completing" a couple of hand-laid turnouts and drilling the holes for the Tortoise actuating rods for the throw bars....

Nicely done, James! Nicely done!

in Michigan
jbvb Posted - 08/30/2018 : 9:35:20 PM
Bumped this by adding one of my build threads to my index on page 1. Also saw an old post with a turnout count, which can be a rough estimate of layout complexity. As of February, when I finished the Downtown Newburyport track, the Eastern Route's turnouts were:

74 fully operational (9 commercial, 56 hand laid, 9 came with the piece of the old MIT club layout),
2 hand laid awaiting mechanisms (inside GE River Works),
10 not begun (5 in GE River Works, 5 on the future Oil Spur peninsula),
86 total.

In May 2010, I had 31 working of an expected total of 80. GE and Downtown Newburyport both got more complicated as I finalized their designs.
Mike Hamer Posted - 08/27/2018 : 7:01:47 PM
James, I really enjoy the look of the lights from the signals working in tandem with the headlight on the locomotive. I truly feel I am trackside railfanning the B&M!
Frank Palmer Posted - 08/27/2018 : 09:36:30 AM
You're a busy man.
jbvb Posted - 08/26/2018 : 10:44:25 PM
Well, 2 1/2 months, time for an update. I went to Thailand and rode trains. I went to Kansas City and rode trolleys on the way, in K.C and on the way back. In between, I harvested hay, wheat & rye, started learning to operate a Pettibone Speed Swing (12"/foot) and made a lot of progress on 5 Strong St. I also shot a photographic layout tour which I'm slowly uploading to Flickr. And tonight I started putting Rowley and Rowley River back in the layout. They will be getting some touch-up for Rowley's 30th birthday next spring. But prep for the NER Mahwah convention (erielimited.org) takes precedence - two clinics and one contest entry.
jbvb Posted - 06/05/2018 : 10:00:01 PM
Thank you, Mike, Pete, Mark. I've been working on/around the layout, but nothing really photogenic:

1. Installed cellular blinds w/cords in the south-end windows. I chose a bluish color not too far from my backdrop's sky color. It is less noticeable, but also blocks more light than the plain white ones I've used elsewhere in the house. My goal is less heat transfer (either way) and less UV.

2. Cleaned up the whole attic floor, then vacuumed & cleaned the track for visitors from CA. They'd found me via the NMRA Layout Directory, which I would recommend to anyone else who likes the occasional visitor (if nothing else, the prospect of showing the layout is an incentive to get off my duff).

3. Got serious about my "What have I learned from contest judging" checklist for the Structures AP. The last burst of activity had been gas & electric meters, this time it's doorknobs and stink pipes. And detailing High St. across the bridge. Then I'll put together a folder on each structure (or maybe make an HTML page with links to plans, prototype photos, build photos etc.).

Apropos of that, has anyone ever seen an HO scale casting for a roof drain? In warmer clients, they connect downspouts to scuppers at the parapet, but in Northern New England it's more common to put a domed cast iron grating over a drainpipe that runs down inside the heated interior of the building. Usually 4" to 8" diameter on the bottom.

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