Coal Mine Scenery Ideas....

Sumner Jul 13, 2022

  1. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    I've spent many, many hours designing and then printing the coal mine complex and still have some more printing and lots more painting, gluing and other assembly before it is done. It sits pretty far in from the edges of the layout in order for the hidden tracks to work. So lots of work on detail that won't be that easy to see when (if) this is finished. I really didn't like that the one side would hardly be visible at all since I was planning on a layout scenery divider on that side.

    I had a lot of foam scraps from installing the foam board on the lower level so using them tried to visualize how the scenery would come together in this area. The following is what I've come up with at this point and I'm pretty happy with it if I can pull it off.

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    Put your imagination into play and think of the dashed lines in the pictures as a rough idea of the shape of the coming terrain. Above to the left of the mine complex is the mountain with the coal seam. Above in the bottom right side is a mesa, with maybe a spire on it, that covers the hidden track that the train with the empties disappears into. It is pretty easy to get to this track from below as I put in cut-outs to see and get into from below. Also it is easy to get under this layout.

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    The visible tracks to and from the mine are show with the solid lines and the hidden tracks with the dashed lines.

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    Behind the mine is the mountain with the coal seam. To the right of it is a canyon with another mountain to the right of the canyon.

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    The two tracks to the mine will go through a short tunnel that is in the mesa hiding the hidden track. The hidden track crosses the two tracks inside the tunnel, out of view, with a double crossing that I'll make. Above you can also see the access to this area from below. I don't plan on having to take the mesa off but will design it so that it can be lifted off if it is really needed (track cleaning, etc.).

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    Everything for the mine has been designed with the free, non-commercial version of Fusion 360. I do still need to print the supports that hold everything above the tracks but the buildings are pretty close to the final height above.

    There is still a building that goes on top of the coaling tower, a chute from the main building to it, various end walls, lots of walkways, doors and other small items that need to be painted and put into place.

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    I wasn't happy that one wouldn't be able to see this side of the mine complex since there was going to be a layout scenery divider blocking the view. Stacking the foam I realized that I could put a canyon over to the mine here.

    You usually don't find a canyon with two mouths (openings), as they usually have a mouth at one end and an end wall on the other end, but I do know of one ( HERE ) so will take the liberty to use the concept here. As an alternative I can gently slope the floor of the canyon towards the mine and the end of the canyon would then be out of view off the layout.

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    Now it is quite easy to view the mine complex from this side of the layout looking through the canyon.

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    To form a canyon you need two side walls so one will be added to the right side along with the left side where the foam is stacked. On the lower level will be the main and a second track that parallels the main past here but also goes to all the staging tracks. Above will be the two tracks that make up the upper level tracks. A train on the upper level will pass in one direction on the high trestle as it proceeds around the upper level and also other way at it makes its way back to ( the track elevator ) to descend back down to the lower level.

    The lower tunnel to the right above will be short. The other end of the tunnel will be where the main enters the main yard on the layout. The scenery divide will be moved to above this tunnel and the one above it. The canyon scene will more or less break up the layout into two scenes along with the scenery divider (sky/clouds) going from here back to the track elevator (it will be curved in that direction form here).OK, I know this situation has never occurred in real life but I'm OK with that as I thing this will end up as an interesting scene if I can accomplish it and I get to see both sides of the mine complex now, so I'm happy.

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    Kind of an aerial view above.

    A link to the coal mine project build ( HERE ).

    Sumner
     
  2. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    Cool any further updates
     
  3. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks...

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    Working on trying to get the tracks in to and from the coal mine so I can make sure the track work is working before I add the buildings and scenery. The building will be removable but probably not convenient to do so thus want to make sure things are working well first. I do need to get it painted and glued together once the 'loaded' and 'empty' trains are running.

    Sumner
     
    Moose2013 likes this.
  4. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    If I understand correctly, you're looking for scenery ideas. Here's Edna Mine, Oak Creek, CO.
    https://flic.kr/p/2kLFH1H

    Sunnyside Mine in UT:
    https://flic.kr/p/PTUJQ7

    These are two mine loadouts that are nestled against a hill or mountain, and are unusual.
     
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  5. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks, I wasn't aware of the Edna Mine. I've been to Sunnyside a number of times but after the mine was shut down I believe so never got up the canyon to where it was.

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    They have a nice car show up there every year. My pickup is second from the left above. Bo Huff, lived there then and was well know for his 50's style customs throughout the country and I'd visit with him if I was going through the area. If you like cool cars I have more pictures ( HERE ).

    The train tracks are now gone up above the town. They were still being used to haul trash from back east to a gigantic land fill there the last time I was there but don't know if that is still the case. Another interesting mine, still in existence and serviced by rail is the Skyline Mine not to awful far away.

    https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=skyline+mine+utah

    I also recently designed some 3D printable tunnel portals based on what are now the UP's tracks along the Price River going to Salt Lake City and to the Skyline Mine. A the foot of where the the railroad enters the Price River Canyon towards Soldier Summit is the town of Helper (which it isn't hard to figure where the name came from) and they also had/have a great car show I use to love.

    Thanks for the links. Sunnyside brought back some memories.

    Sumner
     
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