Sunday, February 23, 2014

Alice Springs the first serious ops session - results

Hi All

This Sunday was the first real ops session for Alice Springs, what can I say, a definite success!

I spent most of the Saturday night setting up the layout, and removing wagons that are not required etc, and setting up two #347 trains and positioning the wagons in the yard.

Prior to the Ops Session I set out roughly the AN procedures, train orders etc, We didn't physically issue orders, just did a verbal.  I also set out the current process, just replace like for like.  replace an empty Cement wagon with a loaded wagon from today's train.  Seems fairly simple doesn't it.

I also initiated a procedure that follows the prototype, it the standard two man crew.
For the model version, one had the controller, the other would be the second person.  Big deal you think.  However there is much more, the second person, is in a company ute.  They have to set points, uncouple wagons, drive to the next point an so on.  To illustrate the movements in the yard by the ute, you simply moved the ute around the yard to the location where the second person would be required.
this also included stopping traffic at un protected crossing.

Brian had the Controls of 7347 into Alice Springs, and I was the second man, + when required I also doubled as the yard - Station master, issuing permissions, setting sticks etc.

Since Brian was new to Alice Springs, he caught on, to the layout concept quite quickly.
Roger, Doug and Michael worked the other yard shunter and the Ghan.

Well there were a few shunting problems to be resolved, lots of driving both in the locomotive and in the ute in the yard.

With all this in place, it took for people in two crews to shunt 7347 and then assemble 2338.  The time, 2 hours flat, I know what you are thinking how can that be? Well when you start to work prototypically this is what happens, sometimes things are a little more complicated than they look.

We then took a break for lunch, and sit down to watch some Rail DVDs supplied by Roger (He always has something new).

For the second train for the day, I took a back seat, and let the crews do all the work.
I now, get why, blokes in the US have large layouts and the operators get stuck in.

It also means that your concept is good, your crew, for a short time, takes on and validates your modelling work, by working to the typical procedures of the time to accomplish the work.
And they seem to be enjoying it!
Even though your crew may not model your particular prototype, but they can bring it to life.
Thats great to watch.

Here are both crews working the second 347 for the day.

 Michael, brought some of his AN power, all fitted with sound, nice....

 Mid session.
 Post session, all is quite in Alice Springs.
 FYI the new train order desk and modelling desk.
 Bow Creek in progress, note the silo is only being stored on the layout.
 The South end of Bow Creek.
 On Sat'd arvo I swapped out six wood legs for Aluminium box tubing, this has allowed storage of stuff under the layout, and have more swinging room.
 Alice Spring Yard.
 The Locomotive Depot.
 looking South.
AN4 and the company car, I used a F150 in BNSF as these are the only ones I have more than two off.
I need to find a 1990 era replacement.

All in all a complete success, thanks to Brian, Doug, Jon, Michael and Roger!
I will be scheduling another real soon now.



Sunday, February 16, 2014

BLI BHP Billiton AC6000CW 6073 and 6076 weathering by Barcoola

Hi All

I have been busy again, and the result was two BLI BHP Biliton AC6000CWs.
All I can say these were more work that it seems, the silver and the terracotta colour on the model was totally NQR.  So in the end I ended up just about repainting both.

This was quite a colour matching challenge, I started with knocking out the plastic blue out of the silver, so this pushed it back to a white colour.  then I followed up with a wash of silver mixed with black and very light blue.  Studying my photographs, I had to paint the cab roof and the nose silver for 6073, and for 6076 the nose and windscreen silver.
The cab name plates were removed, and the correct ones from MnJ were added.
the terracotta colour was mixed and washed over all locations.

For 6076, the BHP Iron Ore lettering has worn through, in certain locations the undercoat was also exposed along with the original BHP blue.
This is what really took the time to get right.

With that tackled, all the grilles were given a wash which matched Pilbara, always add some red!
A mix of wash was made up to stain the fuel tank and walkways.

An iron ore wash, as added to locations, across the nose and walkways and body sides as applicable, this was also washed across the steps and pilots.

Then chalks worked into all the areas as required.

A mix of iron ore dust, was then oversprayed on the model.
Following flat black around the exhaust.
everything was then sprayed flat clear.

The end result, I think I have pulled ugly good out of ugly bad.

One for me 6073, and one for Ebay 6076.

Here is the real 6076


Friday, February 14, 2014

Weathering by Barcoola, the contract job

Hi All

Here is some shots of my first contract job. Another bulk effort, these are more generic, similar techniques washes and final spray jobs.
Those who know me, NSWGR is not my passion to say the least, thankfully the internet has enough shots published to help out.

I am sure they will be happy with the results.