Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Mon Apr 04, 2016 11:46 am

Work has once again commenced on this little layout.
It is coming together well. It will be a 2015 Challenge layout in name only, as I realize the time for the original challenge is long past. :oops:

The low relief shed now has engine shed style doors. The footprint of the layout is extending beyond the 19 inch by 15 inch originally set out, in that the trains can now enter the low relief building and go onto a fiddle yard track extending from the back. This widens greatly the operational opportunities.I have started doing some plaster earthworks. All looks pretty dreadful right now but will come together soon. :D Photos in the next few days.
cheers
Geoff
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Wed Apr 06, 2016 9:30 am

Hello,
photos of La Brea tarpits tramway as promised. Apologies for it looking so rough at present. The track now runs through the shed doors (which can be pushed open or closed) and out the back to either a fiddle yard.
Much detailing of the shed is still to be done. The backscene will probably have a low paling fence, and beyond that slopes with oil derricks and the los Angeles hills in the distance. Kitty Litter will be used for talus, add sparse greenery, fossils in tarpit etc.
As I said, I think it is slowly coming together,
cheers
Geoff Potter
Attachments
La Brea shed doors open.JPG
La Brea shed doors open.JPG (95.55 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
La Brea overview.JPG
La Brea overview.JPG (91.62 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
La Brea excavation dock and figure.JPG
La Brea excavation dock and figure.JPG (84.85 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
La Brea excavation area.JPG
La Brea excavation area.JPG (132.62 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
La Brea doors shut.JPG
La Brea doors shut.JPG (83.59 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
La Brea battery loco train and shed.JPG
La Brea battery loco train and shed.JPG (92.71 KiB) Viewed 2083 times
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Nipissing » Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:52 pm

Nice work ! :D
Have a nice day :D

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Nevadablue » Fri Apr 08, 2016 3:54 am

Excellent work!

I thought tar was black... just teasing... the layout is really neat. :D
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby lesmond » Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:46 am

Lovely job - will be keeping an eye on this one.

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Fri Apr 08, 2016 11:47 am

Thanks for the encouragement.
I am hoping to get a bit more done this weekend. Thinking of the "tar", will experiment with tile caulking (the stuff in tubes) mostly brown with black.
More definition is needed in some of the sides of the excavation...photos of La Brea diggings give the impression that fossils were dug from a very thick, peatish kind of soil. I am thinking a bit like thick and chewy toffee in consistency. So I want to try to have some retaining walls to protect diggers, but also shovel marks where spades have dug around fossils.
On this web page there is a photo 1/2 way down that helps to visualise the effect needed:
http://www.naturalhistorymag.com/htmlsi ... ature.html
and
http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/quaternary/labrea.php

Must visit my local beach (about 5 minutes by foot) to pick up a range of small seabird bones. I'd like to get a jumble of smaller bones stuck in the tar matrix. Morbid I guess, but necessary. Strange hobby! :D
cheers
Geoff
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby lesmond » Sat Apr 09, 2016 10:46 am

This is going to look excellent, Geoff. Its good to have photographs of the real thing to get the detail from, and very handy that you have bones to hand as well.

The black caulk from a tube would make ideal tar, but it doesn't half stink (maybe wait until you're in the house on your own and deny everything / do it outside) and can be hard to get off if it gets where you don't want it :D .

Can't wait to see progress!

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Sun Apr 10, 2016 12:48 am

Thanks Les,
I took my teenage daughter to the beach late yesterday, with the promise that "I am making a memory!".

I told her we were looking for the tiny bones of dead seabirds. I said that she would remember wandering up and down the beach looking for dead things. Strangely (or because she knows how obsessed/weird I am about my hobby) my daughter didn't think it strange at all.
Sadly (because insufficient birds had sacrificed themselves in the cause of MY microlayout) not one bone was found!!!
It seems that migrating birds die because of storms, and are washed ashore in great numbers during particular seasons...I obviously have the wrong season!

I might go and dig a bit in the sand for tiny bones. On previous visits there were oodles of them. I would prefer not to have to scratchbuild bones! This is sounding quite macabre.
cheers
Geoff
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby lesmond » Sun Apr 10, 2016 11:04 am

Hi Geoff,

Its one of those conversations that if heard half way through would lead to "what are those nutters on about?" but in context it makes perfect sense.

Typical that there are no bones available when you go looking for them :(

Hopefully there are a few buried not too deeply.

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Wed Aug 03, 2016 1:55 pm

Hi folks,
here is an update on the La Brea tarpits tramway layout.
It is starting to come together well, and I hope to finish it in the next month or so. This 2015 challenge layout is a tad late, but I am pleased with how it is going. I need to make the earth "tarrier" looking, add a few long weeds, detail the layout and give it a nice box surround. The backscene is a B & W photograph coloured by computer by my clever son Jon. :D
cheers
Geoff
Attachments
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016.JPG
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016.JPG (147.48 KiB) Viewed 1684 times
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016 2.JPG
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016 2.JPG (164.89 KiB) Viewed 1684 times
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016 2 - Copy.JPG
Casa La Brea layout Gn15 July 2016 2 - Copy.JPG (116.32 KiB) Viewed 1684 times
Casa La Brea fossil dig July 2016.JPG
Casa La Brea fossil dig July 2016.JPG (166.19 KiB) Viewed 1684 times
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Montignac » Wed Aug 03, 2016 2:34 pm

Wonderful layout and nice backdrop. Thanks for the pics. :D

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Steve Welch » Wed Aug 03, 2016 6:09 pm

Cracking little layout Geoff - I like it!

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby docnjoj » Thu Aug 04, 2016 12:32 pm

Very nice Geoff. I see you dug up some bones.
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:06 am

Thanks Doc,
in the end the bones are all derived from the plastic mammoth kits (2 of em'), with a couple of pieces of ribbed broken shell. I think I said that I had intended using bird bones as well, but couldn't find one!

The ivory colored plastic in the mammoth kit looks the part, especially when painted in an acrylic brown glaze.
Now that the back-scene is on I feel it is starting to all work together,
cheers
Geoff
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Nevadablue » Sun Aug 07, 2016 2:00 am

Wonderful! I like all of it.

Where did you get the skeleton kits?
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Sun Aug 07, 2016 12:33 pm

Hi Ken,
the skeletons are all pieces of a model mammoth (rivet counters will say it is a European mammoth and not an American one) available online or fron Science shops.
If you were to assemble it it is roughly the correct size for 1/24. I chose to get two models, and slice and dice bits and pieces up to set in the "earth".
The soft plastic is easily carved, and I have quite a few bits left over for wagon and box loads.
When I build a box to put it in, I may use a spare mammoth skull on a layout nameplate.
Here is the link to the mammoth kits. It is one of those archaeological things where all the "bones" are embedded loose in a red coloured plaster earth. The killjoy in me said "bugger that for a joke" and I simply dropped it in a bucket of warm water. The soil dissolves easily after a day or so, and it is simple to free the bones. Some bones were spliced in two to provide more bones for the project.
cheers
Geoff :D

http://www.amightygirl.com/mammoth-excavation-kit
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Sooty » Tue Aug 09, 2016 6:13 pm

Interesting idea that has turned into a great layout.
I have 30 minute epoxy and I know how to use it.

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Sat Aug 13, 2016 1:03 pm

Hi folks,
a bit more progress has been made today. A problematic crossover at the front of the layout was deleted, and the battery loco which repeatedly stalled there has had more weight put in the body, greatly enhancing performance. Wiring (12 volt DC and 12 volt AC for the single light shade) which had previously been temporary has been made permanent.
While I still have scenicing and detailing to do, thoughts are now turning towards presentation of the final layout. One thought, a little different from the usual buff or black edging, is to make a removable heavy styrene box that has historical images of workers and diggings at La Brea (or old lithographs showing mammoths and sabre-tooth tigers mired in the tarpits) around it.
As we are stretching the realms of what could be real by squeezing so much railway into such a small space, I am thinking that it is informative/scene-setting for viewers to see a layout presented in such a way.
Or is it going to be too distracting? I could give it a go (the layout box will be removable) so maybe there is much to be gained and not much lost in trying?
What do you think? :D
cheers
Geoff Potter
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Sooty » Sun Aug 14, 2016 10:39 am

Sounds like it would be worth trying. I think it could fit into the scheme very well.
I have 30 minute epoxy and I know how to use it.

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Sun Aug 21, 2016 7:30 am

Updated photos of La Brea layout now that ballasting, static grass and more refined tar colouring applied.
Enjoy :D :D :D
Attachments
DSCN4635 - Copy.JPG
DSCN4635 - Copy.JPG (193.45 KiB) Viewed 1370 times
DSCN4631 - Copy.JPG
DSCN4631 - Copy.JPG (215.53 KiB) Viewed 1370 times
DSCN4630 - Copy.JPG
DSCN4630 - Copy.JPG (241.88 KiB) Viewed 1370 times
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Montignac » Sun Aug 21, 2016 7:34 am

Image Image Image

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Montignac » Sun Aug 21, 2016 7:43 am

What kind of ballast did you use for this wonderful layout ?

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby NotHarryPotter » Sun Aug 21, 2016 8:15 am

Hello Christian,
thanks for the kind words.
The ballast I used is the coarse brown Woodlands Scenics ballast
Here are some details and a photo
http://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics. ... L-B/page/1

cheers
Geoff Potter :D :D :D
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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby Montignac » Sun Aug 21, 2016 9:18 am

Image

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Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Postby docnjoj » Sun Aug 21, 2016 12:39 pm

Simply wonderful and inspiring! Thanks.
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