Monday, August 24, 2020

B&O #835060

This little project was a relaxing way to spend a Sunday afternoon. This is an Atlas cylindrical hopper and while there weren't many of these on the railroad, I though it was a neat car, although the tooling can't compare to the Intermountain version. 

First is a photo of B&O #601025 taken by Bruce Gage in 1988:

Here is my version:

Sunday, August 23, 2020

CSX #6022 Finished Model

Here are two photos of the finished model. I've come to realize that without a proper photo booth and camera setup, it's tough to get decent shots of Chessie power as most of the weathering is washed out. Oh well, maybe when I get around to setting something up I'll take more photos.

Here's a shot of the real one taken by Mike Berka in 1987.

Friday, August 21, 2020

CSX #6022 Part III

 After 26 Microscale decals , here is the model ready for weathering.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

CSX #6022 part II

Like many in hobby, I was crushed when Floquil went away years ago. At the time I had a good supply of most of the colors I used, however I knew the day would come when I would need to change to a different paint. No problem, Model Master enamels were a good substitute and I learned to use them to my satisfaction. That is until Rustoleum made the decision to cancel the Model Master line of paints. So with regulations getting more strict and the future of enamels becoming questionable, I decided that maybe it was a good time to finally learn how to spray acrylics. I had become familiar over the years working with Vallejo paints, mostly for weathering with washes, etc. but I had never really tried to airbrush them. With that said I figured that this project would be as good as any to "get my feet wet."

Vallejo makes several lines of model paint, the two that I'm most familiar with are the Model Color and the Model Air, the latter is ready to spray right out of the bottle (however it's still best to add a drop of thinner). The only color of light yellow that I was happy with for the patch was in the Model Color line. To spray it, I use their airbrush thinner, cut it 50/50 and add a drop of their airbrush flow improver. 

The addition of the Airbrush Flow Improver made all the difference in the world for me. Before that I had a tough time keeping the paint from drying out too quickly. By making light passes I was able to build up the color without it getting too thick. So my initial reaction to spraying acrylics is a positive one, especially for a color such a yellow. I also like the fact that Vallejo, with the way the bottle is designed, makes it super easy to mix up the paint right in the color cup. Here is a photo of the patched locomotive.

CSX GP40-2 #6022

I used to love to see the Chessie System locomotives as a kid in Northern Kentucky, usually on the C&O bridge going over the Ohio River into Cincinnati. The "disco" paint scheme was quite a change from the old standard blue with either a Capitol Dome or C&O for progress on the nose. The Chessie had tons of GP40-2s, so when I found one of the Athearn Genesis models with DCC and sound for a great price I grabbed it.

#9120 (originally #4120) was re-numbered while on short term lease to the Santa Fe. Since I was going to re-number it anyway I didn't care what the number was. However, since #4120 had the larger, bolder B&O on the cab side, and since I wanted to keep the B&O, I was limited on which number I could use. I decided on #6022 because it had the bold lettering on the cab plus it had the small CSXT insignia underneath it.  Most of this class were simply patched before they were re-painted by painting over the old numbers and applying new ones. The paint was rarely the same color, usually a lighter shade of yellow. 

Here is a photo of the original model from Athearn:

Since there are door latches and such under the numbers, I couldn't just sand the old numbers off. To remove the numbers, I carefully applied 91% alcohol with a small brush. After 5-6 applications, I used a Q-tip to gently start rubbing the numbers off. 

Once the majority of the numbers were rubbed off, I made one more application of the alcohol and cleaned it up with a paper towel.

Saturday, August 15, 2020

New Cover Photo

It seemed only fitting that I change the background photo for the blog. My good friend Stu Thayer took this photo of former Seaboard System SD40-2 #8118 in Corbin, KY.  She started life in 1980 as L&N #8118, then Seaboard #8118 and finally CSX #8118. She's now been rebuilt as SD40-3 #4018 and still going strong. Unfortunately now she looks like "Sponge Bob Square Cab".

New Direction

 For the very few that view this blog, much less follow, you may be interested to know that I've decided to take a new direction with my modeling. Since the move to the new house several years ago, I've actually built two different versions of an Sn3 layout, chaired a national convention, built dozens of freight cars  (many for customers) and I've worked on and repaired several brass locomotives. However about 2-3 years ago, I decided that I could enjoy the hobby just as much going back to HO scale. While the models are certainly nowhere near the quality level as PBL (nothing compares to PBL), I realized it's just a hobby and not a museum.

I will admit that I've had a tough time deciding just what to model in HO. It's easy for the most part, so much is available for just about any railroad. Most narrow gauge layouts fall into one of two categories, D&RGW or RGS. Although there are a small few that would venture into SP narrow gauge, my friend Derrell Poole would remind me that only the purest and truest of narrow gauge fans model the C&S. So after a few small adventures with the Rio Grande, UP and Norfolk Southern, I've decided that I'm really happiest going back to my roots. Several years before I was bit by the narrow gauge bug, I had a somewhat respectable 40x22 layout modeling the L&N in the later 1970's with all the CTC signals, operating sessions, etc. While I don't want revisit that era, I have decided to do something similar, only moving the time frame up about 10 years. Like most modelers, modeling what I grew up with gives a sense of connection I guess, sort of a time machine.  My hope is that the few of you that do view my rare postings will not cast me out and will continue to check in from time to time.  I do have trains running and I can do a bit of switching, however I don't quite have a finalized track plan. Once I do, I'll try and post it.  In the meantime I'm re-stenciling freight cars and locomotives to fit into a 1988-1991 time period for CSX. 

Next project is to update a Chessie GP40-2.

Finshed model of CSX #6367

 Here are two photos of CSX #6367, one from 1986 and one from 1989: 

Here is my finished model. While I didn't try to match the weathering to one particular year, I went for a general grunge approach. Although I did want to include the big oil leak on the long hood. 

I used a combination of airbrushed inks, dry brushed Vallejo acrylics, chalks on the roof and some rust pastels. I haven't done this type of modeling in probably 12 years and I must say I have really missed it, and I'm having a blast!

Thursday, August 13, 2020

#6367 Part 2

Here are shots of CSX #6367 with the decals. I used the numbers for the number boards from the Microscale CSX 1989-2002 set, the cab side numbers came from a Microscale Family Lines diesel set and the small CSXT insignias came from a company called Steel Valley Models. Here's a link to their Facebook Page: ( Thanks to modeler Anthony Hardy, he pointed me in their direction saving me tons of time not piecing together tiny little decals.

Once the decals are dry I'll have fun weathering the crud out of this!

CSX GP40-2 #6367

The L&N Railroad, later Seaboard System and finally CSX, ran right past the University of Louisville where I did my undergraduate degree. In the later 1980's, I used to see lots of Family Lines power whos paint had seen better days. Most of those locomotives hadn't been re-painted yet into the CSX current version of stealth gray, they were simply re-numbered and many times had a small CSXT located either above or below the new numbers on the cab side. 

I happened to come across this Athearn Genesis GP40-2 decorated for the L&N in Family Lines livery. While the L&N only had 10 of these, I though it would be a fun project to model it around 1989. I started by wet sanding the L&N, road number and striping on the cab sides with 1000 grit paper. Then I sprayed a mixture of light gray, refer gray and black to paint the patches. I wasn't concerned with making it perfect, in fact I wanted the paint to be slightly lighter. Once dry I sprayed the patch with glosscote for the new decals. I found this crazy looking tape at an office supply store made by Scotch. It's not meant for painting as it has very little adhesion. However, for airbrushing it's perfect, especially with delicate parts. 

Since CSX only used the nose light and not the one located between the numberboards, I went ahead and removed it (headlight lobotomy) first with some nippers and then with files. Using some Evergreen styrene, I made a steel plate to cover it. I just "eyeballed" it until it looked right and painted it the same color as before.

The number boards were lightly sanded and re-painted white, I also added Microgloss in preparation for the new numbers. 

Here is the current state of the model, I'll post more photos when the decals and weathering are finished.