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Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 10:41 am
by NotHarryPotter
Hello Gnatterboxers,

Some progress to report...
I have cut a 19 inch by 15 inch foamcore base.

Have been playing with a end to end mine layout design using 1 LH Peco short radius point and a short Atlas crossing with a . I have bent some rail, and over the weekend will probably start working out which areas of the layout I want raised or cut away.
This is exciting, as I have not yet built a GN15 layout. I envisage a small amount of operation, as in filling and emptying of an ore car. The radius is pretty tight, but a small wheelbase loco based on a trammer could work.

Possibly even a high line leading from a mine to a tipple to fill a mine car. Ambitious I know, but fun to try.

cheers
Geoff Potter :D :D :D

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 10:43 am
by lesmond
Hi Geoff,

Lovely plan, and a great start made. I'm looking forward to this one!

Les

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 11:28 am
by Pierre Chatelet
Me too !

In "2015 challenge", NotHarryPotter wrote:
"The layout will use HO/00-width track on separated (and fewer) On30 Peco sleepers mostly, with an HO/OO Peco LH point, and an old Atlas HO/OO X-crossing.
I pre-bend the rail to tight radius and then slip the sleepers on. I will photograph the rail jig to give you an idea of what it looks like, basically three steel bolts in a block of scrap wood.
The rail is drawn through between the bolts, and will maintain a tight radius, :D
cheers
Geoff"

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 6:30 pm
by Nevadablue
Excellent! Looking forward to seeing more! :D

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 8:03 am
by NotHarryPotter
Hello Gnatterboxers and fellow 2015 challengers,

Further progress has been made.

The lower section of the baseboard was built with three layers of foamcore-type material being used to give the track a raised profile.
The track as planned fit quite well. A Bachmann Davenport 0-4-0, various black beetles and a drive from an old HO Brill trolley work well on the tight curves.
For locomotives I have minor concerns about stalling on the old Atlas diamond crossing. I am considering using the Brill trolley mech for a trammer loco with it's second truck as additional pickup being permanently coupled and hidden as the underframe of a coal wagon.

Strange how the space on paper doesn't quite fit all of the ideas expressed initially. There seems no way to incorporate dumps to road trucks as originally envisaged, however the centre section now has a dummy spur crossing into the centre of the oval. I envisage some kind of works building with the track running into it.

Having a lot of fun on my first Gn15 layout,

regards
Geoff

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 9:41 am
by Pierre Chatelet
Wonderful start !

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 11:00 am
by chris stockdale
I think my imagination had gone to sleep as I was having trouble thinking it through. There's nothing like seeing a build get going. That's already looking like a lot of fun. :D

Cheers,

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 11:49 am
by lesmond
That's looking good Geoff, you are off to a flying start.

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 3:46 pm
by docnjoj
That is a cool layout! The foamcore looks to be about an inch thick. Where do you get that type, since here in the USA it only goes up to about 1/4".
David(Doc)

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 7:41 pm
by chris69
Hi David,
you can use the PINK HD (HIGH DENSITY) FOAM. You may have to hunt around a bit but I found a supplier here in LA.

Cheers
Chris

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 8:37 pm
by NotHarryPotter
Hello David,

the foamcore i used happens to be a "skip find"of a large quantity of light display board. It has a kind of vinyl/card coating and foam inside.

I have successfully used larger pieces to build On30 portable layouts, and have enough left for a few more.
Yes, it is about 1 inch thick, which helps with durability. I used "No more nails" type industrial glue to hold the laminated levels together, which were quickly cut out using an hand held jig-saw.


cheers
Geoff.

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 1:08 am
by Nevadablue
This is looking really good Geoff! I like that X crossing in the upper right. Now to think about that one. I have a couple of those in my stash. :D

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 6:02 am
by NotHarryPotter
Thanks Ken and all for the encouragement,

one thing to be aware of is that these Atlas Crossings don't like Hornby locomotive wheels at all!
I was thinking about using an old "Smokey Joe" chassis for a GN15 loco. There is no way that the coarse Hornby flanges will run through these crossings without major surgery, so test whatever you intend to run on it.

I am starting to think that maybe what I thought was best at the front of the layout could more effectively put to the back, so I'll play around with the notion of reversing the whole thing. This would also out the point within very easy reach for operating purposes.

cheers
Geoff

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2015 9:21 am
by NotHarryPotter
A quick update on my Gn15 2015 challenge layout.

Physically, not much happening...yet. :o
I have been doing a lot of thinking, because the original mine theme just didn't seem to gel as I thought it should.
I have however hit upon a great theme, basically a fossil dig at La Brea tarpits in the 1920s. This part of Los Angeles was right in the middle of an oilfield, before urban sprawl spread along Wilshire Boulevarde.
See this great website:
http://www.tarpits.org/la-brea-tar-pits/timeline
The excavations section on the timeline has a photo from the 1920s that will be my primary inspiration.

I think this will be an interesting and different theme. The new ICM Henry Ford & Co 1/24 figures, and quite a few SLM figures in 20s garb are suitable for this micro. Making fossil bones will be a bit of a challenge. I might be able to use bird bones. Sounds very macabre but mutton birds are continually washed up on my local beach, with hundreds of skeletons to recover bones from.
Now that I have the theme I am hoping that preliminary work will proceed a bit faster. Will probably start with making scale boxes, ladders, wheelbarrows etc. At least some figures will need to be adapted/butchered.
Motive power will probably be a T Model Ford rail tractor thingy similar to that used on 2ft gauge in New Zealand.

It always helps to put your thoughts down I find. :D
cheers
Geoff Potter

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:05 pm
by Larry C.
What a great start to the Challenge. I like the idea of the fossil dig and will be very different from what has been done before.
Will be watching these 2015 Challenges with great interest. Won't be jumping-in myself as I have a project already underway.
Keep going, looking good.

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:34 pm
by docnjoj
I think La Brea pitts is a great idea for a micro model. Can't wait to see more.
David (Doc)

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Fri Jun 19, 2015 8:12 am
by NotHarryPotter
Hi folks,

not a lot to report on La Brea Tramway. I have been working mostly on the battery locomotive which is coming together nicely. I am getting closer to making a start on structures and scenery. I am probably going to make a heavy styrene box to sit the layout in, with proscenium, roof and LED lighting. The backscene will have oil derricks in the distance. The layout will be loose in the box, and so on one viewing you might look at one side of the layout, and then another viewing you will see it from the other side. It could be interesting to build a "short side on"view box as well. The minute size of the layout means you can experiment without having wasted much time or resources if it doesn't work. I'd like to include a nod to the close proximity of Hollywood and the movie colony, perhaps by including a distant billboard for a silent film or such like. Would love a Charles Chaplin figure in 1/24!!!

One key prop for the scenery has been ordered. This is a plastic mammoth skeleton

http://www.onlinetoys.com.au/4m-dinosau ... mmoth.html

that will be left unassembled, with parts partially buried and being excavated from the tar pits. The model builds to around 8 inches long, so I am figuring that it should be a good size for 1/24 use. The skull will be displayed somewhere on the layout, complete with tusks.
Added fun with these kits is that you must EXCAVATE the mammoth/dinosaur etc. from a block of plaster! :lol:

I pick up the Mammoth kit tomorrow, and I think then the real fun begins,
cheers
Geoff Potter
Wamberal NSW Australia

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2015 12:45 pm
by NotHarryPotter
Hi folks,

some progress being made with the challenge layout. I have glued a backboard to one side of the layout. My initial plans of a styrene box just wasn't practical, at least for this layout.

For the purposes of the challenge, the track plan will remain within the 19 inch by 15 inch footprint, but I am putting a mousehole in the backscene that will eventually be able to be entered through a low relief shed door. I can later extend the track through the shed door to add a kind of fiddle yard out the back.

I have been busy painting figures the last few weeks. Tonight I cut up the soft plastic "bones"of the mammoth skeleton, cutting them into sub-sections and halving some pieces for partial burial. I have used an acrylic brown glaze to start to age the bones and they are starting to look the part. In a tar pit they take on a brownish black stain.

So, stuff is happening. I will take a few photos once I rough out the low relief shed. I am having fun!

cheers
Geoff Potter
Wamberal NSW Australia.

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2015 2:07 pm
by NotHarryPotter
Hi folks,

progress is being made. I started on the building for the layout.
It will be corrugated iron (using a coarse scale craft shop corrugated board). A low timber platform/deck will be almost at ground level out the front.
I am toying with the idea of having a three-legged hoist for workers to lift fossils out of the excavation area.
The building will be placed at an angle to the backboard, and will show a tiny bit of side wall. To me it looks more interesting and allows the track to enter the building at right angles. I might buy another mammoth skeleton kit to chop up. Photos of fossils at La Brea (as found) show a multitude of animals all tangled up. I would like to have a worker laying flat on a platform while excavating. I must build scale wooden boxes in which to place excavated bones. The backscene will have oil derricks in the background, like the real La Brea in the 1910s. Once I finish building and detailing the layout, side boards with cutaway sides and general prettying up presentation wise will occur.
Here are some photos, I hope you enjoy them. All in all I feel I am starting to get somewhere.
best regards
Geoff Potter

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2015 1:51 pm
by docnjoj
Luv dem bones!
David (Doc)

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:57 pm
by Maddog
I had kind of the same idea that I did on my Lionel layout.

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It wasn't the La Brea Tar Pits, but some dinosaur bones that had been exposed. I used chicken bones in O scale, but for G scale maybe you might want to think about a turkey?

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2015 7:43 am
by NotHarryPotter
Great idea Maddog!
I live very close to a beach here in NSW where a lot of dead mutton birds wash up from time to time.
Shortly i'll go for a walk, and macabre as it sounds, pick over the bleached bones of seabirds to see what might be useful.
What a strange hobby we have! :)

cheers
Geoff

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Nov 22, 2015 8:35 am
by KEG
Just found a picture of archeology excavating in the "Valley of the Sleeping Giant" near Kraehwinkel.

Image

Of course, they used a temporary 15 inch feldbahn as well. The skeleton was made by Airfix.

Have Fun

Juergen

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:33 pm
by NotHarryPotter
Juergen,
love your sense of fun and imagination!

Tonight I finally overcame a bit of "modeller's block" and started work once more on the layout. I've had some problems working out how it might all come together, and think I have it sorted.

I am hoping to get some modelling time in the next few weeks, otherwise the 2015 challenge layout might be disqualified for not being finished on time! :oops:
best regards
Geoff Potter

Re: Geoff Potter's Gn15 2015 challenge layout

Posted: Sun Dec 13, 2015 1:11 pm
by NotHarryPotter
OK,

I have actually made progress on the Challenge layout...more in two days than in the last 4 months. :D

I really did have a case of modeller's block on this one. The one low relief building is on its way to completion. The scenics shouldn't take long, as I think I have worked out how to represent the solidified tar that the fossils lie in. I will try mixing black and brown silicon caulking material (or perhaps "No more gaps"" ) for this. The upper scenics of the layout will probably be different grades of kitty litter (unused) with some minimal weedy greenery.

I have spent the last few days constructing boardwalks, ladders etc. from coffee stirrers and thicker wooden stirrers sourced from the refreshment stand at the last Narrow Gauge Convention at Bowral. The backscene will need some distant oil derricks painted on it. I have gone from coming to within a whisker of dumping the project to really getting excited by my "vision".
The end is in sight, but I just don't know if I can finish by December 31. I will give it a red hot go.
Photos will follow in the week or so.

cheers
Geoff Potter