Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Progress Report 09.05.12

Last night, I got the urge to start ballasting.  I had only ballasted a short section through a tunnel down by McGee Creek.  The experience turned out well, but it was a short section.

So, the ballast train arrived at Rock Island on the layout late yesterday evening.  Preparation began by painting the rails a rust brown.  Note to self: find a different non-oil based paint.  The scalecoat paint I used created quite the fume cloud that took a while to ventilate.  I will pick up some acrylic based paint for future painting.

After the rails dried and tops were cleaned, I spread out the ballast.

This morning, I came back with my 50/50 water/glue solution.  I tried two methods.  One using dish soap in the 50/50 solution and one using alcohol.  Both worked just as well.  I think I will go with the dish soap method in the future as that cuts down on the smell with the alcohol.

Two issues:

1) I don't like the way the ballast is darker after being glued;
2) Although I try to be careful applying the glue/water mix, the ballast seems to be a little lumpy.  Not much but definitely not as smooth and manicured as I would like.  I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong to cause this.

Here are pics of the ballasted area.

My newly set goals before the next op session is to hit the scenery hard planting trees and grass as well as constructing the Westclox plant in LaSalle.

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