Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Almost finished something.

Two things I have thought about today. 1. I have to get better at before and after photos. 2. BluTac and rubber gloves don't mix.

Here is the after photo of the ute at the oil depot.


I wanted to to have a truck loading at the oil depot so I cut it in two to fit. I put a couple of full drums in the back. The two closest to the backscene are half height to cater for the wheel arches. I originally cut it in two but while writing this post I thought that I could do it just a little better. The tray was removed and filled with drums. It looked okay but before all the glue tried I went back to the layout and removed the tray from the backscene. I then cut the rear of the cab off and stuck it to the tray and then stuck it all back onto the backscene once more. The ute was a Micro Metals model which I bought from the Model Railroad Craftsman in Blacktown.

Before I painted this bloke below, he was wearing all grey, just like the bloke above. I put on my rubber gloves and thought that BluTac would be great to hold him up. BluTac is great and it doesn't stick to fingers but it does to rubber gloves. It was nothing dramatic just a little awkward and almost comical. 

This chap is now placed on the layout next to his chopped up ute discussing his load, or football with the other bloke. I was thinking while I was painting his long sleeve shirt blue that maybe in Australia he would be wearing short sleeves. In the sixties or seventies, maybe just a singlet or no shirt at all. Fortunately the oil depot promotes sun safe clothing so a long sleeve King-Gee shirt it is.

I reckon I might have finished the oil depot now. The dairy might be done too. The next step is to put down some static grass.

Until next time.

Monday, 27 March 2017

Much the Same

I painted the doors again. I'm not sure if it's just me but Humbrol paints seem to be thinner than they used to be.

Other than that there is not much to report. I did however, update my other blog on the main layout. This blog started before Billabong Marina was even thought of.

Check it out here: http://sapphirecoastline.blogspot.com.au/

Until next time.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Some Painting

I have to admit that the weather lately hasn't been convenient for airbrushing when I do all of this outside. I used to be able to to do this inside but I decided to build a layout where my workbench is.

I have been able to squeeze in some painting over the last week.


The bakery has been painted. The doors need another coat of yellow and the whole thing could do with a bit of dulling down. Then the windows need to be glazed, backed with black cardboard, like the dairy, and then glued to the layout. But... before that happens I'm going to add a backscene to that side of the layout. It will be 6 cm taller but will provide a scenic divide from the top level of the main layout. I'm hoping that this will happen this coming weekend. I need to paint a backboard for the main layout too.

I was thinking of adding a platform and replacing the lower two windows with doors but I decided against it. It would mean  that when the yellow doors were open, one of these doors would obscure the loading platform and one of the doors to the platform. The wagons are shunted into the factory. If the layout is to be operated separately then the wagons can be parked in front of the yellow doors.

The other bit of painting was the oil depot.


I used Rustoleum white primer and hand painted a Humbrol brown on the doors and windows. They will need a couple of coats over the next couple of days. I should do something with the wood underneath too.

I reckon that lists are good as they can provide some goals for the week. Here are some things to do:

1. Paint the yellow doors and the brown doors.
2. Paint the ply under the oil depot to represent concrete.
3. Dull the bakery.
4. Ballast the line to the bakery.
5. Put some static grass down around the dairy and glue on some milk urns.
6. Get cracking on the backscene.

Until next time.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Argh! Distractions

I confess that I have been distracted from the marina for the last five weeks. The other layout has taken too much of my time. Check it out here. 


One of the jobs was to paint and attach some H beam onto the dairy wall to act as a conduit for the wires attached to the lights in the awning. Five weeks later and the job is done. If you look carefully, you can see the H beam. During the process the sign came off the dairy. I'll need to glue that back on.


I also primed the future bakery.


Next to add a bit more paint, find the windows that are stashed in a safe place, and paint some doors. From here the famous "Billabong Pies" as well as biscuits, cakes, etc, will travel across the state. I performed a quick Google search. The name doesn't exist so I'm claiming it.

I also primed the fuel depot as well.


Monday, 13 February 2017

Adding Some Lights

The dairy is finally glued to the back scene. It was held on with Blutac. The wooden platform had a hole drilled into it and some warm yellow LEDs were stuck to the roof of the awning. (See below.)


The LEDs were from a man in a club. He had bought a whole heap of it in a role for the club and was passing extra bits onto members. The origins are from a popular internet auction site. They take 12V as they have a resistor integrated into the strip. I originally used so single core wire from a cat 5 cable. (The stuff that they once to use to wire computer networks at work.) This wire was too stiff so I used some thin hook up wire. They aren't the best colours but all I have to remember is that purple is positive.

To cover the wire I have some plastic H beam from an other project years ago. If I paint it grey it shouldn't look too out of place. Effectively, you won't seen it from the operating position and it you can, there will always be a wagon in the way. I haven't quite finished it off yet. I'll need to paint the H beam.

While I was waiting for the glue to dry at the dairy, I drilled a few holes and planted a couple of lights.


I placed two at the marina and one on the loading dock. As they are green, they don't seem to stand out that much.

Tomorrow, I will try to glue the awning down and glue on the white tanks for the dairy. You may notice that they aren't where they should be in the image above.

Until next time.






Saturday, 11 February 2017

Back For a New Year

I do know that we are six weeks into 2017. I have had a bit of a break from the little layout for a couple of months. The layout was really a planned extension of the larger layout based on the far south coast of NSW. I reckon that I am about 12-14 months behind schedule with the larger layout due to a major change in design. I guess as a result, the larger layout has become an extension of Billabong Marina. I should get around to updating the blog on that layout too.

Here is a quick review if you are new to the blog.

I started a small layout. One the track was down, not much happened. Work seemed to snow me under and I didn't touch my hobby. I decided to spend 15 minutes a day on the layout. The result was fantastic. Better than I had hoped for.

The first benefit was that the layout progressed. The second benefit was that it gave me fifteen minutes a day where I could relax for a little bit. Some days were written off and nothing happened. Other days I worked for longer. The sense of achievement made me feel better as well.

I didn't meet all of the goals of ten weeks of this challenge. The last week of work totally smashed me. Having the staff Christmas party at my place didn't help. However, I am pretty proud of what I achieved in the nine weeks. 

What's next? I would like to carry on, but... I also want to get the mainline of the larger layout laid and trains running. 15 minutes a day will need to be shared between two layouts. Having said that, one cool weekend could see the larger layout sorted.

One thing that I did learn from last year is to make a list of jobs to do. Some of them may require other tasks to be done first but creating a job list makes sure that you don't go to the layout and wonder what you are supposed to be doing.

Here is where I am now.


What needs to be done?

First up, the dairy needs finishing.  I want to put some lights under the awning. This will require a tube to carry the wires to beneath the layout. Then the platform can be glued in place with a couple of milk urns.

Next, the oil depot needs finishing. The building needs to be painted, the baseboard need covering. and if I can, a rear of a truck to be glued where the forklift can load drums onto it.

The loading platform needs a light. It also needs a bus shelter for passengers and a sign declaring it as 'Billabong Marina'. Then the steps can be glued into place.

The marina itself needs a couple of lamp posts, a couple more people eating fish and chips and maybe a person of two in the boats. I need to find and paint the oars for the row boats too. The interior of 'Fishy Mc Fishface' needs doing but I reckon that interiors can wait a bit.

The paddock to the right of the image needs a couple of rocks and swaggy camping. The campfire hopefully will glow. It also needs a good looking coolabah tree. Maybe a squatter riding on a thoroughbred too. It won't have a fence as a fence will crowd out the area. It is a micro layout after all.

The bakery can house two wagons when it is attached to the main layout. This still needs painting and windows and doors added. It needs a loading platform outside of the closed doors.

However, before that happens, I want to add a back scene along the left hand side where the layout will butt up to the main layout. It joins on the bottom level. the next level is 10 cm higher and the top level will be about 20 cm above. A back scene will provide some visual separation. It won't go the whole length of the side as there are two tracks at the front joining the main layout. One track joins the main line and the inner track is a siding, in theory for loading wheat hoppers. I'm not sure how that will work yet but that is a larger layout problem. The back scene will need to be affixed to the top of the baseboard and have a hole for the bakery wagons to go through.

Once that is done, I could add a warehouse front on the left side to make the little harbour area more impressive, as well as a couple of smaller buildings to hide the back scene brackets.

More cobblestones can be added but the final building will be the fish co-op for loading the huge catch caught by the two fishing boats every day. This is going to be scratch built as it will house two vans inside and two vans on the wharf. It will be narrow but hopefully give the impression of a larger building. Once that is in place the far side of the wharf can be finished.

The bollards (? I don't know what they are called. The posts on the dock edge to stop the boats hitting it.) can be added. When this is done the pontoon for the ferry can be secured in place then the water added and the marina jetties finally glued into place.

Down the front on the right is a cattle yard. There isn't much to see. I'm planning on a platform and a fence with a couple of gates. A ramp would be nice but there isn't much space.

Finally, it will be onto the station. Lights, fences, signs, hedges, seats and interior details.

That's a big list but I reckon that I can make a huge dent in it during the next ten weeks.

Tomorrow's work will be stripping all the moveable bits off and returning it to its proper place.

Until next time.



Sunday, 11 December 2016

Today, I Play.

I took a break from doing stuff and ran a train.



I enjoyed watching it go around. Enjoy the clip below.


Until next time.