Tuesday, January 11, 2011


What would have been a great snowbound weekend for modeling turned into a bust thanks to a sore throat and fever.  I did get some reading done between naps and bowls of soup.  This months Model Railroader was so-so.  A few of the articles were good but others blah - I'm sorry to single out the one guy, although I think he was a staff writer or something, but that is the lamest scrap yard that I have ever seen and I've seen a lot of prototype ones.   First problem - the gondola was bigger than all the scrap in the yard, which I guess they only took grey iron as there was only one pile.  Second problem - maybe it's just NJ and PA scrapyards, but I've never seen an electromagnet rig on an $200k excavator with a brand new paint job.   They use claws and front end loaders and whatever other junk that they can keep running.    Then, the only real creative type construction he does - the fence - he uses Cambell siding, which I think has been discontinued - so that is probably bumming out a lot of new model railroaders that were going to try.     I don't mean to sound snobbish, and I really try hard not to be critical of any modeling, but - (1) I had my hopes up about "Modeling a Scrapyard" in the coming attractions and (2) - the article just seemed almost put together as filler.  Maybe MR can't afford to pay for articles anymore?   Someone, I think maybe Brandon Wehe or John Gallagher, and correct me if I am wrong, has an outstanding scrap yard Free-mo module that was on display at the 2008 Steel Mill Modelers Meet.  
Before my weekend resting, I did manage to hit the LHS to replenish some of my Tichy parts.  I can't say enough good things about this company or these parts.  Grandt Line has also produced nice stuff and a good variety over the years, but their supply and even catalog has been difficult to come by and not always something that could be counted on.  Tichy hands out their complete catalog at shows - which I keep next to my workbench for reference - and their supply seems to be excellent and consistent.  My LHS is also a distributor so I usually just go in with a list of part numbers and quantities and they go into the warehouse and pull them - I have yet to see them come back without something on my list.    One item I seem to buy a lot of is the coal chute pack - it is $3 and has some misc parts for two different coal chutes.  I've used some of the parts elsewhere on occasion, but primarily buy these packs for the two sheaves in it - they are smaller than any of Grandt Line sheaves but work perfect for the sheaves on large gate valves.  This time I'm using them on my port crane for the boom lifting cables.     I also grabbed some windows - these were pre-mulled together double hung windows that I am mulling into additional groups of three for the celestory windows on the R&H Chemical Works.  They are easy to join with just a little light sanding to remove half the trim.   Finally, I needed some windows for a styrene house I am building.  Most of the layout is a steel mill, but I have a few spots for residential housing in the hills overlooking the new yard.  This house will actually be a scale replica of my house.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Agree about the scrapyard article. I plan to model a CMC scrapyard and was looking forward to a good modeling-oriented article to pair with the proto-oriented reprint in "HO Lineside Industries You Can Build". I suppose one could assume that the modeled portion is only the sliver of a much larger yard nearest the tracks, but I would have expect to see a conveyor near the gons if so.

Just discovered your blog and look forward to exploring it.