Bufferstops Autumn Makeover Bit of a sidetracking

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Bufferstop
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Bufferstops Autumn Makeover Bit of a sidetracking

Postby Bufferstop » Thu Oct 01, 2015 1:22 pm

Well here we are October 1. My task to complete between now and Christmas is a makeover of some scenery. The bit most in need of some refreshing is the canal viaduct section. It's actually 12 years old, having been imported virtually unchanged from my previous layout. I did make a new front profile board and fasten it with some spacers to the original to put an extra two inches on the width to match up with the rest of the layout. After that I did a bit of static grassing and added the trees. now it's starting to look a bit threadbare in places. See what you think.

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The track could do with re ballasting, some repair work to the fences, there's falling down as in real life and there's just falling down. I've never been too happy with those pillars and the end of the viaducrt wall.

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The canal stone work is starting to look like strips of card and the scatter has parted in places to reveal the edges of the under structure, but I don't want to do too much as some of the grass areas look real scrubby in the photos which is what I'm looking for.

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The trees could do with a bit of a colour change and a bit of thinning out, to allow a bit of light through the branches. I don't think those coping stones should be so wide. Once you blow the dust away the canal surface actually appears to have some depth so just a clean up should do there.
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Scope on this side for some longish static grass and a bit more scrub. The folage which hides the screw head next to the track has disintegrated so bit of a rework there. There's a colour break where the boards meet so I'll have to try to blend them in.

Ah well that should keep me busy for a bit.
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PinkNosedPenguin
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby PinkNosedPenguin » Sat Oct 03, 2015 12:34 pm

I like your canal scene (I love real life canals!) and I'm sure it will look even better after a makeover :D
Do you have a shot of the whole area you intend to work on so we can put the close-ups into context?

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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Sat Oct 03, 2015 3:35 pm

Happy to oblige:-
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some of the hedges extend into the areas either side, so if I do anything to them I'll need to spread a bit further to a natural break point.
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Oct 06, 2015 4:21 pm

I've struck the first blow. I decided to do the re-ballasting first. It seemed to me likely to be the most messy so get it out of the way first.
I was a little wary of spraying water mist over the track in the midst of the scenery, so I improvised a couple of shields to stop the overspray.
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The clear plastic came from the discarded wrappings of someone's presents last Christmas, they were thick enough to hold a crease which was the main requirement. Also in shot is my fine tip PVA dispenser nose down in its pot and a tub of ballast plus funnel for dispensing it.

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I said that I was likely to carry the refurbishment furthe than just the middle board, I carried on spreading until well into the curve where it's hard to see in a normal view. The little jar is recovered old ballast which I'll use to patch bits at the other end of the layout. Lurking in the lefthand edge of the shot is my ballast spreader. No fancy Proses plastic jobs around here, just a slightly flattened toilet roll core with a bit of card taped across the bottom. It was definitely a one time tool but it did the trick. Now I'll go and do something else whilst the ballast sets.
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Notroh
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Notroh » Tue Oct 06, 2015 8:29 pm

That's right, get the worst job out of the way first.

Then you can really enjoy the rest :)

Nice to see you involved John

Peter
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Fri Oct 09, 2015 4:53 pm

Not much visual progress to report, tidying up the ballast, picking the bits out of the rail web, and the tops of the sleepers is quite time consuming. This is when the downsides to my "just below eye level" baseboards kick in, but the work progresses.
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Mon Oct 19, 2015 5:11 pm

There will likely be a further few days hiatus, as having returned from our few days in the signal box, I'm now preparing for a colonoscopy on Wednesday, (it's ten years since the op and the surgeon wants to check up on his handywork). If you've had a colonoscopy you'll know what's involved, if you haven't then you don't want to know. :o
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Notroh
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Notroh » Mon Oct 19, 2015 6:42 pm

John
Ouch
Not nice :(
Hope all goes well
Peter
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luckymucklebackit
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby luckymucklebackit » Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:42 pm

A visit by Agent Picolax looms :o

http://www.dla-associates.co.uk/crud/Picolax.pdf

You have my genuine sympathy

Jim
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Sat Oct 24, 2015 7:37 pm

Our local lot are angels by comparison they even give you two gowns one each way around so there's no gap up the back when you move from place to place, and when it's done you get wheeled to recovery. Then you can exit by a door that goes straight to the car park. Quite discreet really.
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Thu Oct 29, 2015 5:24 pm

A bit more progress to report, I've been busy with the flock and the static grass. I hope this has achieved the balance between brightening up the scene, and retaining the tatty unkempt look of so much land just on the outskirts of our towns.
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Angling the camera down a bit, the canal has got its makeover. New brick side walls and stone block copings have been laid. The tow path has had some new cinders applied and the canal has been drained and refilled with clean water :D I cut carefully along the walls and took out the old clear sheets on which the colours are printed. The lower ones still had a good strong image on them, so I just removed the top one. Last Christmas I rescued the clear plastic sheet from a box which had held crackers, the printing was just a card overlay. I used the old plastic as a template to cut the new one which turned out about 0.5mm wider, so I very carefully lifted the walls along the sides just enough to spring in the new piece.
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I'm quite pleased with the way it's turned out, there's a nice slightly distorted reflection in the surface of what is above. The transparent sheets below, each with a slight variation of the colours of the bottom give an impression of depth. Now I'll have to find a canoe cast in lead as it gives away the illusion that generates the wobbly reflection. The surface is not dead level, it's still slightly bowed but the brain tells the eyes that it must be flat and it's the reflection thats bent, so why are the two ends of the flat bottom of the canoe out of the water. Perhaps I'll try double sided sellotape first.
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skyblue
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby skyblue » Thu Oct 29, 2015 5:28 pm

Regardless of the issues with the canoe, I think that the water in the canal looks absolutely superb. The colour is just right in my opinion, as is the reflection.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover

Postby Bufferstop » Thu Oct 29, 2015 11:31 pm

Yes, I'm afraid that canal bears witness to just how many hours of my misspent youth were taken up hanging around, on and under the Newton high-bridges and the cutting they spanned. The water at that point was always smooth being at the centre of what must be one of the longest straightest unbroken stretches of canal in the country. From the top of the Perry Barr flight in Birmingham through a series of deep cuttings and high embankments across the river tame and the old Grand Junction Line, more cuttings and embankments to a junction somewhere in the Black Country. To survey a level course through already industrialised land for such a distance was quite an achievement. About half way along, a branch canal from Aldridge came in, supplying water from reservoirs in that area.
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Bufferstop
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover Bit of a sidetracking

Postby Bufferstop » Wed Nov 04, 2015 4:16 pm

Got a bit side tracked, you know, the way you do. I've been busy with the old electric tea strainer putting long unkempt grass on the left hand side of the cutting and giving the trees some new green leaves. One of the large trees I've replanted in the field next to the barn and I've tidied the hedge along the front. That opened my eyes, the trees in the orchard between loco shed and barn were only ever intended as a stop gap and were going to let down the whole scene. I've known what has been wanted for some time, so here goes new trees coming up.
I've watched demos by "the tree lady" at the NEC and local shows, that often her hubby was beginning to wonder, (he usually has an adjacent stand with a tree populated layout). He needn't worry it's the trees I'm after. I had a packet of florists paper wrapped iron wire and various scatters, what could I come up with. This to be precise
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Now I'm not going to go into great detail now, but this is the parts list
Florists iron wire (green paper wound)
Spring Green scatter
Masking tape
Bostik clear
PVA
Spray fixative
and the magic ingredient.
What's that you ask, well we put out fat-balls for the birds, they come wrapped in little green nets which aren't very good for the birds but chopped up into little pieces and popped onto branches coated with Bostik they make a great substructure for the scatter. I now need to replenish my stock of iron wire as I need at least a dozen trees for a semblance of an orchard. Ah and some little red blobs for apples :)
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Dad-1
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Re: Bufferstops Autumn Makeover Bit of a sidetracking

Postby Dad-1 » Wed Nov 04, 2015 5:49 pm

Ahh Trees, another thing on my long list of 'Must Learn'.
I like the freshened canal scene ....... dust can be a right pain.
Also I think the canoe looks fine, on mine the bow was out of the
water for a few feet back ......... perhaps mine was bent as well ?

Geoff T.
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