Not much to report these days. As we are living in a small rental (while our new house is being built) I have not really had the space or equipment to do any proper modelling. While I could get all my tools out and set it all up, I just don't feel comfortable! This is probably due to knowing we have to move it all again in six months. Not sure.
I have been able to fiddle around with some more track work stuff. I recent blog post by Rob (Picton Blog) was very interesting and I loved the colouring he used for his hand built track. Just days before he posted on his blog, I was pondering over what colour to paint the rail. With a few hints from Rob I think rail colour is sorted. Just need to unpack the air compressor and air brush, aaahhhh.
Sleeper staining seems to be another one of those processes where everyone does it differently. I have been experimenting with Indian Ink, thinned paint washes and Raven Oil diluted with metho. So far I am liking the Raven Oil mix method over the others. I first heard of Raven Oil while reading Rod Kelly's blog (NSWGR Southern Line Layout In A Shed). He has used it with great effect on his laser cut structures. I went down to my local Horse World, or what ever its called and bought a small bottle of both black and brown stains. When I got home I mixed some brown stain with metho and threw in some sleepers. They looked ok, a little on the fresh side for railway work. With the second lot I added some black stain with the brown. I liked the colour better however the stain to metho mix was a little strong and they stained dark very quickly. Still some experimenting to do. I have included a picture of some stained sleepers. I think they are a little too dark but I am sure after some weathering with the airbrush and chalks they may come up ok? Please offer some colour advice.
The cross over now needs all the sleeper plates soldered where the timber sleepers are to be placed, rail to be painted and then timber sleepers added. After much experimenting I think I am going with an under track type stretcher bar fit out. This will allow me to add close to scale, decorative stretcher bars between the two point blades. More to come later.
On the locomotive sound front, I have pretty much finished my C32 class file. Just days before the Loftus Convention, I DCC'd one of my Classic 32 class models. The install was not one of my best and it will need some re-work once I get my lathe and mill back on line. It's amazing how much I rely on these two tools these days for making decoder/speaker mounts for brass locomotives.
The damn 57 class sound file has sucked me back in. While in Sydney I started to experiment with using a generic chuff sound and modifying it heavily to match the rhythmical beat of the three cylinder beast. The quality of 57 class recordings I have on hand are just not good enough however they are great for working out timing and pitch changes. After much modifying and playing around I think I have a better sounding 57 class file. The camera and YouTube compression does not do it any favours however I thought I would share it.
BTW the urinal sound at the end is suppose to be a water filling sound feature. Don't listen to the end if your are busting for a leak!
The Loftus Convention seemed to be good this year. I didn't attend any lectures as I was lashed to the 'Waterfall' layout but from what I heard everyone seemed to have a good time. As always with these events I got to catch up with friends and made some new ones along the way.
That's about all for now.
Thanks for reading,