(F) Ferrocarril Internacional (On30 modular)

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(F) Ferrocarril Internacional (On30 modular)

Postby Blackcloud Railways » Tue Jan 25, 2011 2:32 pm

I have posted a video on Youtube showing the Ferrocarril Internacional On30 modules in use at the CRM members' meeting last Saturday:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZNRB_Vqhls

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Jan 26, 2011 1:24 pm

The idea behind the Ferrocarril Internacional is not that it is a single large layout, but a series of microlayouts sharing common fiddleyards. The same ideology is used with our OO modules as well.

CRM does not have a clubroom, we are an on-line group and both assemblies were built with no physical meeting of the participating sections until the day of each one's first showing (our 2009 exhibition for OO and our 2010 event for On30).

The gaps may seem quite apparent on film when the camera is panning along the line but if you are looking at a particular scene your eye tends to stop at the scenic break, just as it is intended to with any other layout as the train goes off-stage, just as it does on the real thing when you watch a train go past until it runs behind a building or under a bridge and out of sight.

One of the visitors at our 2009 show, examining the OO modules, was heard to say in surpprise "Oh, look they're all connected together", but only as the train came past the modules she was looking at. Until then she thought they were a series of unconnected dioramas.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Tue Jun 07, 2011 7:25 am

Introducing Ciudad Grande.

What, CIU Dad, grand? :lol:

No, I've not been a Clubs and Institutes Union member for a long time, well before I was a dad, before I even moved to Cheshire in fact!

Ciudad Grande translates as Big City. This is my second attempt at modelling an urban area in a very small scene. The first was City Cube, an abortive attempt to model part of Manchester in a cubic foot. Ciudad Grande is even smaller, by about two inches in each direction, and O scale instead of OO which compounds the small size still further.

The train can be seen briefly as it passes over the alley on an elevated section of the Ferrocarril Internacional through a run down area of the city, certainly not one you'd want to find yourself in after dark.

The photos below have been taken during the module's early construction stage, hence the b/w vignette treatment to hide the rough bits. I don't think that it'll get used for OO but the option is there because industrial buildings come in different sizes. The front right building is actually one of Tony Boon's self adhesive OO warehouse prints but this has very large windows and I think it will pass for 1:48 (providing nobody inspects it too closely).

On30 - Image - or OO - Image

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Jun 08, 2011 7:21 am

I was still uncertain whether this idea would work or not, similar doubts were instrumental in the demise of City Cube and its successor Barraca Phoenix until I took the photo below:

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Having lined the module up with Taylors Port and put the scene dividers in place I am now convinced that Ciudad Grande will work as a micro module and can be used as a filler if there's an odd 18 to 24 inches of bare table left when the Ferrocarril Internacional is assembled at shows (the layout is different virtually every time it goes out).

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The scene dividers actually add to the module by becoming like further buildings in the alley between the viewer and the bridge.

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It's nowhere near finished yet but should be available for the Middleton Railway's model railway show next month, should the need arise.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:06 am

The appeal to me of this scene is seeing a full length train pass through the scene, just as if watching a train in a built up area with very a restricted field of vision like this :) .

The Ferrocarril Internacional is a series of microlayouts/dioramas sharing common fiddleyards with each scene being independent of, and isolated from, the next as shown in the video linked below....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_L8_2qjs8Fg&NR=1

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Sat Jun 30, 2012 9:45 pm

I have started work on a new module for the Ferrocarril Internacional. It is, unlike the others, based on a real place though not an exact copy because the track gauge is a foot out. Frog Rock is in New Zealand, on Cape Gauge, but the Ferrocarril Internacional runs on 2ft 6in. Gauge apart I am going to try and make the module a recognisable version of the prototype.

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Photo by Brian Robinson (http://www.flickr.com/photos/brian_robi ... 291190940/)

The seed was sown over on the MTI forum when Andy from Germany posted his Small Station Prototype thread which set me to looking for additional info on the station. The photo below shows the current state of play, the baseboard was knocked together using scrap wood with a piece of felt covered plastic sheet for the backdrop. The scenic work so far has been done using an aerosol of expanding foam then carving it to shape when set.

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The station gets its name from a nearby outcrop and is situated on the Weka Pass Railway between Waipara and Waikari, to the north of Christchurch.

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Postby Glen A » Sun Jul 01, 2012 2:42 am

'Station' is a generous term for it, Bob. :wink:

Its nothing more than an old line side ganger's hut (dating from when it was a branch line on the national railway system), and a 'long drop' toilet, put in by the preservation railway.

More recently a wooden bridge beam got put down to act as a temporary platform for a company that wanted to hire one way charter trains before the line was finished to Waikari.
I spent many years helping to replace sleepers on that line.

Were you aware there is also a 'seal' rock in the stretch you are modelling? I can probably find you a photo if you are interested.

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Postby Glen A » Sun Jul 01, 2012 3:52 am

Hi Bob,

I found you a couple of photos I took showing the Seal Rock (left) and the Frog Rock (right).

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Image

There is also the "3 elephant's" (bottoms) on the other side of the road. But I've never bothered to photograph them :wink:

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Sun Jul 01, 2012 7:45 am

Thanks Glen, those are super pictures with the surrounding scenery showing well. They should help a lot when I get to the backscene painting stage. I don't think I've got enough room to include Seal Rock to the left of the module without making it look over-compressed but I will try sketching it onto the backscene at that end.

I did wonder why it appeared to have no apparent access when seen from Google's "street view", though there does seem to be a footpath in some photos. Being put in as a temporary stopping point after preservation would explain that, and the platform being out of line with the building. I'd assumed that the layout was to give some shelter to the buildings while placing the platform where the topography of the line widened out a bit.

I still intend to model it as a passenger station rather than just a lineside hut, it just looks so good as it is and it'll give an excuse to use it as a request stop when operating the modules. It's actually quite luxuriously equipped (probably a term never before applied to a wooden hut and a dry closet) when compared to some of the stations served by the UK national rail network. :roll:

It looks like very nice part of the world you live in, thanks again for taking the time to seek out and post the images.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:05 pm

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A full tub of filler has been used this morning, creating the very obvious overhang on the rock near where the buildings will be (above) and a more even hillside at the rear of the module (below).

I did attempt to mould Seal Rock into the rear hillside but it didn't look right. There are times when omission is better than error but I'll still have a go at drawing it on the backscene later.

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A start has been made on ballasting the track, the cat litter and sand mixture will be topped with fine N scale ballast to represent the prototype. The tree is modeller's licence, to hide the hole in the sky at the Waikari end of the module.

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It's an aquarium ornament and still work in progress at the moment, having had its trunk and branches repainted but awaiting new foliage.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Jul 04, 2012 8:45 am

Still waiting for glue to dry on the ballast so my attentions have moved away from the track for a while.

Image

This may be the "Land Of The Long White Cloud" but I would hasten to point out my username! :lol:

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:37 pm

We have a warm sunny day in Cheshire at the moment, so the module is sat on top of the dustbins, hopefully drying the glue better than it was doing in the garage.

Unable to do any further work on the scenery until the glue has dried, I've made a start on the buildings instead. The basic construction, as usual for me, is solid blocks which will have the timber and corrugated iron cladding added. I've glued a thick card sub-roof and gable ends in place on the main building because I'm too idle/inept to cut the wood to fit the pitch of the roof.

The comparison photos reveal how On30 does not look vaguely like Cape Gauge... Nothing I can do about that, sorry, but it is not so obvious when looking at the module sideways on.

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The photos also reveal that I need to cut away more of the rock behind the station to enlarge the overhang and that I need to build up the hillside on the other side of the line because it is far too low at present.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Fri Jul 06, 2012 3:33 pm

The overhang has now been enlarged, as has the rock face on the opposite side of the line.

Image

I'm still not happy with the colouring though, it will need some more dry brushing to get it right but the ominous storm clouds can be used to explain why it's not an exact match. Not only is the ambient lighting darker but the scenery is also wet!

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Sun Jul 08, 2012 11:52 am

Now we're cooking with gas.

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I've not bedded the buildings into the scenery yet because I still need to add the name on the gable end.

Compare the latest pictures with the ones on google.co.nz.

From the road in the bottom of the pass.

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Looking towards Waikari.

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Looking towards Waipara.

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The rear of the station.

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OK, so it's not finescale... But it's a good enough likeness for me to be happy with it and that's what matters (to me anyway). :D

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:10 pm

The view from the rock now shows that the building is firmly rooted to the layout (or will be when the glue dries).

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I've had the house to myself this afternoon so made the most of the peace and quiet to do some signwriting.

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And this is the picture that started it all off, scaled down to 1:48.

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(http://www.flickr.com/photos/brian_robinson_nz/6291190940/)

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Mon Jul 09, 2012 12:22 pm

I've been shunting layouts about in the garage this morning. Frog Rock has been added to the line of On30 modules and is now operational.

Click here for short Youtube video.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Thu Jul 12, 2012 7:37 pm

I've finally managed to tidy up the garage (or just move stuff around) enough to get the whole layout operational. Most of the work involved removing tools, debris and spare trains which had been "stored" in the fiddleyards. Having got the f/y content down to three trains each I decided to play trains for a bit.

After all, that's what I built the modules for! :D

Youtube link

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:52 am

While at Telford yesterday Steve Bennett discovered a source of FREE bark suitable for use as rocks... Just the spur I needed to start work on a task I've had in mind for a while. :D

The passing loop at Perejil has never been used as such, in fact the points are pinned for the main line and the sidings have only been only used for displaying spare stock.

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I have started this morning on converting the module into a small junction with the branch disappearing right rear into a tunnel. This will be long enough to hold a small railcar (4, 14 or 22) out of sight between trips.

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The watering facilities have been removed and the station building will be resited where the tank was, freeing up the south end of the module for redevelopment.

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An extended hillside, incorporating the bark, will disguise the short branch.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Tue Jul 17, 2012 9:58 am

Perejil has been removed from the layout shelf, allowing easier access all round. The module, like the others included in the CRM 2010 show, was originally wired for DCC (those who took part in that event can testify that witchcraft simply does not work with the modules, and that is why we now stick to good old fashioned analogue control).

To enable stock to be stored in the loop with DC operation I'd simply cut one of the feed wires so all that will be needed to convert the new branch to independent operation is to cut the remaining wire then connect both the old loop feeds to the branch controller. (The track already has insulation between the two sets of points because they are both live frog.)

Having had a look at the wiring the module was set back the right way up and the rock formation pinned in place using barbecue skewers. The expanded polystyrene has since been sealed with a mix of neat PVA and black poster paint, then (most of) the holes were plugged using a paste of PVA, paint and cat litter.

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That's the state of play at the moment - still very wet - so it's unlikely that I'll have the main line reopened today.

Mañana... Maybe... But this is Sierra Oculta, my own little Latin American Marxist paradise, so there's no hurry. :lol:

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:41 pm

[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzZeQ8N4Jck[/url]

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:24 pm

I've been working on the area around Perejil's south tunnel. This is where some of the bark, collected outside the Telford NG show (thanks Steve), has been used.

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When the filler holding the bark had set I used more to complete the rock face.

Image

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Wed Aug 01, 2012 5:14 am

More coffee stirrer abuse...

My old Tri-ang hoppers, rewheeled and Kadee fitted a few years ago, were still too small to make convincing On30 models... So I have beefed them up a bit. All four are slightly different from each other, making them look as if they have been rebuilt and patched up over the years.

YouTube link

The close up stills at the end show that these are now battered wooden framed vehicles suffering from very heavy usage.

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Postby Blackcloud Railways » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:28 pm

Image

Following a discussion about module lighting at the Telford Narrow Gauge show last month I have fitted "diffusers" to the lighting on Asilo and Rio Paleta (and will do the same to the Gn15 modules which were the actual subject of the conversation before their next outing).

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The difference made by these is quite noticeable, there are much less reflections from the rail heads and the backscenes at the baseboard ends do not have such a marked triangle of bright light on them.

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The diffusion is very simply achieved by placing masking tape over the LED strips. I used two layers on Asilo but only a single layer on Rio, where I wanted brighter "sunlight" in the desert.

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I'm not sure how well the masking tape will adhere as it is currently applied, attached to both the plastic of the LED strip and the MDF of the shelves above the layout, but if it does come loose I'll take the LEDs down and wrap the masking tape around them for a better fix.

Image

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Postby Steve Bennett » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:48 pm

Looks pretty good in the pics Bob, though I'm surprised masking tape doesn't cut the light output too much, let alone two layers.
Does it cure the multiple light reflections off the top of the rails too?
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Postby Steve Bennett » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:53 pm

Looking again, I think you still have the light strip too far back, the viewing side of the trains are still going to be in shadow, as can be seen here:

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