“Alastair about 99% of the layout was scratch built mainly because I just got tired of going thru magazines and visiting layouts and see this and that built by the big manufactures just wanted to have something my own.
Many of the structures were built from old photos from the 20’s some were just built to fill in spaces, all are wood most of the front buildings and some of the rears have complete interiors and lighted of course, I found that O and On3 are just to big to have nothing but blacked out windows or windows that had no interiors, some of the back walls in the buildings are photo shrunk to 1/4″ scale then details from there to the front, I really like doing forced perspective it really tricks the eye.
All the track and turnouts were had laid with spikes. The ties are roughed up and stained with various browns and lots of gray.
Trees on the layout are something I just stumbled across, my only neighbor about 1/2 mile away (we both line in log cabins on a dirt road in the woods) owns a tree service, I was helping him one day and saw the roots of this tree an ash tree. Then WOW here folks go around cutting branch’s off trees then gluing on bits a pieces….. so here right in front of me is a perfect tree for almost any scale….Tree Roots Gods gift to the model RR’er. Next step spray some adhesive hole it upside down sprinkle on your favorite color green (I like to use more then one shade of green) keep in mind the if you look a tree in the daylight the sun give the green different colors. Small roots make great bushes. Then just square off the bottom (should have been done before you start) drill a small hole in the bottom to accept a stiff wire or nail and place in on the layout.
As far as ground over goes I use floor sweepings! Sounds a little crazy but as most modelers are a little sloppy and when you on occasion clean off you bench onto the floor just sweep it up and save it. the mixture of colors makes great ground cover just remember to remove and pink or blue foam that you might have used. For the base nothing looks better the real dirt really fine dirt….so where would you get some super fine dirt….find a construction site where the heavy equipment has been driving over for a few days grab a 5 gallon bucket and shovel it in. IT MIGHT BE GOOD TO ASK FIRST most of those construction guys age pretty big. LOL Lay down some white glue on you base take a strainer shake it over the glue fairly thick (don’t make it flat) the ground just is not that way unless you building a golf course. Then mix some white glue and water and a little dish washing soap set it aside. Before you pour this on the dirt you will want to spray some denatured alcohol on the dirt soak it right in the pour on the glue mixture. The denatured alcohol and it must be denatured will help the glue soak in.
Your can then put on your floor sweeping while the mixture is still wet.
Painting structures is one of my favorite things to do. Keep in mind again that nothing is one solid color, after all you have done a lot of work to make it look real so dull down the color you don’t want your work to look like a store purchased plastic toy. If you are using plastic a spray coat of dull coat will help it also will give the plastic a rough surface that can be painted over.
Well that’s about it for now I’ll write more when the mood hits. Right now I’m in the middle of changing scale from On3 to indoor G scale…Wow talk about having to get a lot of detail in….lots of fun for me on the way.
CEO and mostly Janitor …. Narragansett RR On3”
(Images are clickable so you can zoom in on the detail)
And Brian has sent in this superb video of his engine house. Amazing detail:
Another short video of a chap welding inside Woodland Scenics Tucker Brothers machine shop which is also on my layout.
Wow! A huge thanks to Tom for his wonderful pics and narrative. I’m green with envy.
Big thanks to Brian too.