Thunder Ridge: A Freelanced Focus on Scenery

Mark Watson Apr 12, 2010

  1. Tracy McKibben

    Tracy McKibben TrainBoard Member

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    I would definately go with foam if I were in your shoes, but it's easier for me to get. I have three Home Depots and a Lowe's within 10 minutes of my house, and I can buy all that I can haul home. You can fit several 4x8 sheets into an Explorer... :tb-tongue: When my son was younger, 80 years or so ago, his way of "helping with the trains" was to sit down with a piece of "pink stuff" and a rasp, and merrily carve away.
     
  2. Tracy McKibben

    Tracy McKibben TrainBoard Member

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    "Hey honey, come down here. You're gonna laugh!!! Remember how you said I could put a layout in the family room, with that nice steel blue carpet?"
     
  3. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    Landlords, significant others, girlfriends, housemates, rest at ease!

    All clean. :D

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Tracy McKibben

    Tracy McKibben TrainBoard Member

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    Hey, you do good work. Why don't you swing by my place this weekend, I have a couple of projects for you... :tb-biggrin:
     
  5. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    Sure thing!

    I only accept this as payment. :D
     
  6. Phil Olmsted

    Phil Olmsted TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Mark,

    I'm also enjoying this project. If you decide on foam, I can check to see if Pacific Lumber Supply in Colma still carries it. I can also transport for you. Let me know.
     
  7. mcjaco

    mcjaco TrainBoard Member

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    Those usually hurt the wallet! :)
     
  8. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    Another step forward, two more steps back

    Yep, they usually do, but they also usually return far superior results. :)

    I've made the decision and have made plans to get some foam! Aside from my preference to working with foam, it will also allow me to build the mountains above the track as a removable piece which will allow for easily transporting Thunder Ridge should I find a new apartment.
    The plaster technique would make it very difficult to remove those mountains, making the layout a full 4x8x3 box, impossible to even maneuver out of my apartment. With the mountain out of foam and removable, the main structure is cut down to 4x8x1.5, so a turn on its side can easily slide through doorways.

    So with that plan in the works, I've rotated the river valley back to face the wall and got out the C40 rail and PC board ties and began working on the C40 turnout ladder for the stub tracks. I'm constructing the ladder of 4 turnouts as a single unit.

    Here's my current progress on them:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    Greetings all!

    Thunder Ridge has been put on hold this past month while schooling kicked into high demand. We've had a lot of high priority work that needed to be complete and it has been a great experience.

    With the semester now at an end, I can return to the layout and start the real progress!

    Today I rode the BART down to Union City and met up with RBrodzinsky. We went to Home Depot and picked up some extruded foam (usually the "pink" stuff, but these sheets are somehow purple) and delivered it to my apartment. Come Tuesday, I'll begin tearing out the second plaster attempt on the river valley and begin work on the final terrain. Third time's a charm. :)

    I've also completed 3 & 1/2 of the 4 stub line turnouts. After I get the river valley terrain carved out, I'll order the C40 flex for the siding and stub tracks as well as C55 bridge flex for the bridges.

    Once again, Thanks to Rick for hooking me up with the extruded foam! I cant wait to dive in! :D :D
     
  10. Tracy McKibben

    Tracy McKibben TrainBoard Member

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    Purple pink stuff? Interesting...
     
  11. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    Just caught back up on this thread. Mark...Ya know...being a "NMRA Renegade"...I sure am enjoying one of the "NMRA Ninjas"...struggling! It does my heart good...hehehehehe. Just remember...as long as at the end of the day you are smiling...it's all worth it ;-) :)

    .
     
  12. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    It was very strange. When looked at by itself, you would first call it "pink", but there were also some 1/2 inch sheets that were the normal pink, and these 2 inch sheets clearly had a purplish cast to them when viewed next to them. They were still within the wrapper for the pallet load, so whatever slight variation in dye caused this, who knows. Of course, the Pink Panther was emblazoned on the sheets, so I told Mark he had to put the Henry Mancini theme on his stereo whenever he was working with it.

    People in his building asked if he was installing soundproofing.
     
  13. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    Big smiles tonight as the final terrain of Thunder Ridge took shape! Let's start off with the deconstruction of TR 2.0.

    It was kinda satisfying ripping out the old plaster and cardboard mesh. :p
    [​IMG]


    Here's the bare bones, catching daylight for the 3rd and final time.
    [​IMG]
     
  14. Mark Watson

    Mark Watson TrainBoard Member

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    And here I already have the foam in place!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Now the hard part for working with foam, especially after piecing this jigsaw of a puzzle together. None of its glued down yet. *gasp* No worries though, I'm going to get a sharpie and number each piece A-##. The letter referring to the layer, and the number referring to it's position traveling left to right. I'll mark the numbers on the side facing out (visible). I predict the terrain to be rock solid (no pun intended) by Tuesday night!
     
  15. TwinDad

    TwinDad TrainBoard Member

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    Oh, wow!

    A) I didn't realize you were running the canyon all the way to the floor! That is going to be one impressive mountain!

    B) That's a LOT of foam!!!

    Nice work, Mark! I'm looking forward to seeing some scenery on all that pinkness...
     
  16. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    :pwink::thumbs_up:
    How did I know you were going to spend all day Sunday cutting foam
     
  17. Packers#1

    Packers#1 TrainBoard Member

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    The Valley of the Purple Foam. Geez Mike, it's looking good but I bet your gonna have a lot of fun with some sandpaper, knives, etc etc
     
  18. Jerry Tarvid

    Jerry Tarvid TrainBoard Member

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    :thumbs_up:Your foam work is very inspiring Mark and comes at a critical time when I am starting to build the rough scenery forms on my layout using foam. I will be paying extra attention to your progress and hope to learn much.:tb-cool:
    Thanks for sharing.

    Jerry
     
  19. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Mark,
    Impressive gorge! I have not had the guts to try plaster or hardshell, so I stick to the ol' reliable foam and carving gig. I put sculptamold over it this time, and I like the look. Unfortunately, I have so little time to work on it at night, nothing has beendone since before I left MT.
    As for transporting it--my layout is 3x7x2' all crated up for transport. I had to disassemble the crate, remove the mountains, and haul it in the house as carefully as I could. It simply would not have fit thru the corners in my house before coming to the bedroom. You are wise to build yours with removable mountains as well. Being an apartment dweller, you need to keep portability inmind. Don't overbuild to the pointyou cannot move it into a smaller place, nor make it so that you have to cut it up to move it. Like I did.:eek:
     
  20. YoHo

    YoHo TrainBoard Supporter

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    I've used foam and I've used Plaster. I've always liked the look of plaster better. Plus, it's easier to shape in tight places than Foam.

    Anyway, I think it's funny people call it pink foam since the original inventor Dow Corning stuff is Blue, not pink.
    Pink is the color of the off brand stuff Home Depot(The Debil) sells. Maybe the purple stuff is a mix. :D


    Progress looks good. Keep up the good work. Despite what I said about MY preferences, sometimes it's just best to work in the medium you're most comfortable with.
     

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