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Author Previous Topic: Railroading In Council Bluffs..... Topic Next Topic: Eagles in HO
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Crew Chief

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  01:21:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm back! I've been making more changes in the last several weeks in bringing my layout much closer to the prototype PRR South Bend Branch. It's not perfect by no means but I have included several new structures along with the signs to make several of my structures more recognizable to visitors who know the area. First up is an elevator change. I decided that my Delong Elevator was too large for the area and decided to replace it with a smaller one that better fits the area.

This is the old elevator being replaced.

Old elevator GONE!

New elevator added to the Styrofoam base.

Scenery added to the Styrofoam base. Scenery added this way at the workbench is a lot easier than having to work around the structure on the layout.

Here is the scenery added around and up to the Styrofoam base scenery.

Note the power meter detail and the conduit with weather heads on top of the shed. I used Evergreen styrene to build this detail and used an MV lens mounted to a short piece of styrene rod for the meter. Also note the texture and color to the pole. I used a razor saw to achieve the texture. After studying many photo's from back in the 60's, I've found that most of the poles were an orange-brown in color. I painted my poles with a rusty brown color and then rubbed in some burnt umber oil paint to simulate creosote and then rubbed it off with a rag. This leaves dark areas in the texture and darkens the brown color a bit and gives it that creosote look.

Left side view.

Side view.

Here are the changes in Kewanna. I've added an old photo to show what it looked like before the changes. The Kewanna Implement replaced the Bar MM Feed Supply. Awnings were added to the restaurant. The gas station was replaced with the exact same kit but it is a Shell this time. A coal dealer was added to the Kewanna Elevator along with the office/scale house to the elevator. All of the new structures were based off of research I did before building them.

Old Kewanna before the changes.

New scene completed with new structures.

Close up of Shell station.

Kewanna Implement IH building.

The new Grass Creek. The old country store and Wilson's Feed Supply were removed and replaced with new structures that better represent Grass Creek.

The old country store.

The old Wilson's Feed store.

The new overall view of Grass Creek.

Grass Creek grocery and garage.

Close up of Grass Creek Garage.

Grass Creek Grocery.

Thomas Hardware of Grass Creek. Notice how I cleaned up a lot of the clutter on the new structure. I felt that much of the clutter on the old Wilson's store didn't make sense. I tried to include only what 'should' be there.

Here is the last set. It is the new Delong again bringing it much closer to the real Delong. The backdrop was redone along with a new HC Sinclair and a renamed lumber building to a Sadler Fertilizer.

Old Delong with the HC Sinclair that will be removed.

Another view of Delong that includes the lumber yard.

The lumber yard renamed to Sadler Fertilizer. New backdrop installed.

New HC Sinclair gas station and new backdrop

Overall view of the new Delong.

A couple of new photo's I took of the other half of Delong. Jones' Grocery was in Delong until 1966 and then was sold to the Clingler's and was renamed Clingler's Grocery. Today, it is called the L&S Country Oasis. It is also in a new building. The old store was turned into apartments. Neat history I was able to turn up.

This is a close up view of the detail in front of Jones Grocery.

Overall view of the other half of Delong.

Whew! I spent a lot of time on this tonight. You can obviously see why I've been quiet for the last several weeks. Next up will be an elevator at Lucerne removed and replaced with a Transit Mix Cement Plant (not the Farm Bureau Co-op but the Wayne Feeds elevator). I felt I needed something different from elevators. There is a small cement plant near my PRR South Bend Branch in Leiters Ford, Indiana that is only about 4 miles from Delong. I will have mine near Lucerne and will be called Crull Transit Mix just like the prototype.

Tom Johnson

Country: USA | Posts: 672

Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  01:52:18 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Outstanding Tom!!

Country: USA | Posts: 314 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/24/2010 :  01:59:11 AM  Show Profile  Visit UKGuy's Homepage  Send UKGuy a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
Tom, what can I say...

simply incredible modeling. In most of those shots I have no idea where the backdrop starts and the layout ends... spectacular blending.

I will leave the rest of the complimentary and deserved praising words for everyone else to use up while I just sit here speachless and admire.


Country: USA | Posts: 6277 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/24/2010 :  02:00:31 AM  Show Profile  Visit UKGuy's Homepage  Send UKGuy a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
I just had to come back and say that the depth of those scenes is incredible, beautifully done Tom.


Country: USA | Posts: 6277 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  02:30:54 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Tom --

Wow, indeed! You've done a heckuva lot of great work in apparently a fairly short time ... each look I take at each photo reveals new, interesting bits of detail. There's a wonderful level of finish there and a lot of thoughtfulness apparent in the modeling and placement of detail. And, your layout has a bright, cheery look to it that's quite pleasing. Well done!


Chambers Gas & Oil -- structure build
Quality craftsmanship with a sense of humor!

Country: USA | Posts: 4674 Go to Top of Page

Frederic Testard

Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  02:55:09 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom, it's always a treat to watch your layout, but now it's even more impressive. You start with great looking structures and places and you still improve them! Fabulous!
And I know I have already said that, but the transition between the backdrop and the layout is the most realistic I have ever seen. Your roads, in particular, are phenomenal. I wish I had such a talent for this kind of work.

Edited by - Frederic Testard on 02/24/2010 02:55:36 AM

Country: France | Posts: 17652 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  07:47:48 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

You have indeed been busy! I hate to see some of the old familiar structures and scenes disappear, but you have replaced them with some real eye catchers.

I like the looks of those telephone poles. Thanks for the painting/weathering tips on those and the 'how to' on the electrical service.


Country: USA | Posts: 32543 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/24/2010 :  08:42:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

That last picture is truelly awesome. Had to look for sometime to try and spot the join between the backdrop and the scene.

Well done on some fantastic modeling.

Country: South Africa | Posts: 2829 Go to Top of Page

Tabooma County Rwy

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  09:26:01 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom, you've raised the bar again, taking some outstanding scenes and making them even better. Well done!

I particularly liked the weathered concrete block look you achieved on the Grass Creek Garage - care to share your techniques for achieving such a realistic concrete look?

Country: USA | Posts: 4630 Go to Top of Page

Neil M

Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  09:41:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Amazing modelling. The backdrops are blended into the 3D scene so well that the end of the layout is invisible!

I like the new structures too

Built a waterfront HO layout in Ireland http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=22161 but now making a start in On30 in Australia http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=52273

Country: Australia | Posts: 2502 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  10:36:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom outstanding work. I would not have had the heart to rip out something that was so well done to begin with. I do applaud your efforts though to get closeer to a prototype it can be rewarding. Was the new Delong mill kitbashed for the orginal? Also can you indulge us with a few "oevrall" phots to get a sense of enite layout?

Cheers!, Joe

Country: USA | Posts: 1096 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/24/2010 :  10:52:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by UKGuy

simply incredible modeling. In most of those shots I have no idea where the backdrop starts and the layout ends... spectacular blending.


I can only echo Karl.A's thoughts along with everyone else. Your scenes going on into the backdrops are to die for. You have mastered that process over and over again with each and every scene.

Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast
Post count: 5000 posts added to below count.

Country: USA | Posts: 15912 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  11:11:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Like always excellent modeling..

Tom,Going a tad off topic.

The old Kewanna reminds me of a small town my wife and I passed through in central Kentucky while chasing a L&N local powered by a RS3..

There was a Mom and Pop store there that made great tasting fried Bologna & Cheese sandwiches.

Country: USA | Posts: 6979 Go to Top of Page

Jerry M

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  11:18:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom, I love your modeling!! Great stuff,everyone else has covered it.......Jerry

Country: USA | Posts: 4055 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/24/2010 :  12:59:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit Graffen's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Probably the nicest roads Ive seen in a very long time, excellent work overall!

Michael Graff
"Deo Adjuvante Labor Proficit"
Swedish custom model builder.

Country: Sweden | Posts: 1613 Go to Top of Page

Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  2:53:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit HobbyDr's Homepage  Reply with Quote
All I can say is WOW! I grew up in western Ohio, but have been living in SW Florida for the last 25 years, and these pictures took me home. (Man, I miss Autumn.) Every detail is perfect. I would kill to be able to get my 'yellows' so saturated.


Visit HobbyDr's Workbench http://hobbydr.blogspot.com/

Country: USA | Posts: 259 Go to Top of Page
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