Friday, January 27, 2012

A Slow Start to the New Year.....

I purchased another laser cut kit late in 2011 from Banta Modelworks. This is a model of Oilton Saloon which existed in Ophir a town on the Colorado narrow gauge. You can see it's footprint, as with all O Scale structures is impressive.
Banta Modelworks Oilton Saloon.

Monday, 2 January, Craig invited Raymond and myself to go to Hobby One with him. It is not often we get such an invitation from the “Weird Geezer” so we quickly accepted. Craig was after styrene and other bits and pieces, Raymond bought a few items while I bought a simple “educational” locomotive kit of the Penydarren, the first high-pressure steam locomotive ever built. The locomotive was designed and built by Richard Trevithick in 1804. Trevithick is perhaps the most overlooked early railway pioneer. He was a prolific inventor. The kit is pre-coloured and meant to go together as is but I will paint it first and try to make it a more suitable display model.
The Penydarren locomotive kit is simple but still an interesting locomotive.

Our electrician came over on Saturday morning 7 January to prepare a quote on installing a higher capacity power supply cable from the street power box to our house. He took some photos and measurements and I discussed with him a number of other jobs around the house. I sent him an e-mail the following Tuesday listing the tasks we had discussed. He will then e-mail me a quote for the work involved.

It has been a quiet weekend as far as work inside the shed goes. I did some hand brush painting of the tender of the Penydarren kit but it really needs to be spray painted so I will have to visit Hobby One again to get some Tamiya black spray paint.

I had to mow the yard and trim around the shed, particularly around the back. Boy, the grass grows quickly at this time of year. I can see the tall grass causing some serious problems with the outdoor compressor unit for the air-conditioner. To over come this, I have decided to have a 2 ft wide concrete path put down along the left-hand side of the shed and across the back before we have the air-conditioner installed.

I spent Sunday afternoon cleaning up the barbecue area just outside the shed. It had become quite messy with a small desk from my study, The Beast (the bench saw we bought specially to cut some timber for the shed, and, at this stage, unlikely to be used again), an outdoor table and bench seat, two sawhorses and an old wooden tool cabinet as well as some twenty or so cartons of bathroom tiles for a refurbishment of our upstairs bathroom all taking up space. It is now cleaner and has opened up the space giving us some room to move when we have to saw any timber for the layout.

After placing an order with Sierra West in the United States way back early in November my two kits arrived on Monday 9 January. They are quite substantial craftsman kits and will be a challenge to build. Raymond just laughed when he looked at the kits and then looked at me shaking his head. He couldn’t help himself. I don’t think that he has any faith in me to build them. One is a Logging & Tractor Repair Shed and the other a Mill Engine & Boilerhouse.

Sierra West Scale Models Mill Engine & Boilerhouse and the Logging & Tractor Repair Shed craftsman kits

Raymond got another kit from Backwoods Miniatures (through their E-Bay Store) on the same day. This was a Log Loader mounted on rails on a flatcar. He also got another five flatcars with rails.
Backwoods Miniatures Log Loader

More items arrived from overseas on Friday 13 January. Raymond had purchased some more items from Backwoods Miniatures on their E-Bay sale site. The two items were a Snowplough and an 0-4-0VBT locomotive. This latter model looks very interesting.
The bench saw which I had bought during the construction of The Shed and only used once had become a liability. Raymond and I discussed whether we really needed it or would use it again. We decided to dispose of it and so it was sold to one of Raymond’s co-workers at CITEC. The new owner collected it promptly so we have ended up with a bit more working space in the pergola area.

Backwoods Miniatures 0-4-0VBT and Snow Plow kits

We celebrated my birthday on Sunday 15 January (a couple of days early) with lunch at the Alexandra Hills Hotel with family members. Raymond was kind again. This time he gave me a Bachmann Porter 0-4-0ST with DCC and sound. That makes a total of 13 Porters, seven of which are mine. Currently only four are fitted with DCC chips and sound. I am thinking of having a bash at a non-DCC Porter to alter its looks and at the same time to fit a DCC Decoder. This will not be easy as each batch of Porters that Bachmann produced had different wiring as well as there being differences in how they were put together. RailRoad Line Forum, an on-line fraternity of modellers from around the world but mainly based in the US, does have some tutorials on this.

On Wednesday 18 January Raymond got yet another parcel from overseas, this time from EDM Models, York in the UK. Raymond has bought stuff from them before. This time there were five San Juan Car Co. tank cars together with a Bachmann log skidder.

Raymond has been taking an interest in E-Bay of late and has bid on a number of items. He missed out on two MMI diecast locos – a K-27 and a K-36 – when his computer lost contact with the internet just before the auction closed. He also tried for an MMI C-19. Raymond was the top bidder for some days but just 10 seconds before the auction closed someone bid $1000 more than double the original purchase value. Even the seller was surprised at that one. Raymond had got to know the seller as he was the one selling the K-27 and K-36 while Raymond has successfully bid on other items he is selling.

The electrician’s quote arrived Tuesday night 24 January. I was most pleased and sent him an e-mail in return accepting not only his quote for the upgrade to the house power but also the additional electrical work around the house including additional power points in a number of places and the relocation of others.

The first E-Bay item that Raymond was successful in buying arrived Wednesday 25 January from Canada. It is a Wrightlines whitemetal kit for a Bagnall 0-4-0ST complete with an electric motor and gearbox.
Raymond's first succesful purchase on an E-Bay auction a Wrightlines Bagnall 0-4-0ST
Thursday 26 January is Australia Day and therefore a Public Holiday. Raymond and I have both taken the Friday off as part of leave owing so we have a four day weekend. We have made plans to progress the layout construction during this time. We shall see.

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