Friday, March 8, 2019

Friday Fun: "New England Yesterday and Today"

Happy Friday! And apologies for the lack of posts lately. The day job has gotten much busier much earlier than expected - and that means late nights, and fewer blog posts. I have been able to do a tiny bit of modeling though - centering around trying to put together some Walthers modular buildings.

More on that in a future post. For now, I wanted to share a little "atmosphere" and inspiration for why I model what/where/when I do. "New England Yesterday and Today" was produced in 1938 by the New Haven Railroad as a way to promote the region for tourism - and the NHRR as the best way to get there. The mighty I-5 class 4-6-4 steamers ("Shoreliners" on the New Haven) are brand new and figure prominently in the train shots in the video. At least as important though, are all the wonderful scenes from an era that's all but forgotten (though won't be forgotten on my layout if I do it right).

So, sit back with your favorite beverage and enjoy this little trip back in time . . .

Monday, February 25, 2019

Molding Monday

With apologies for those of you who saw the punchline already over at the Valley Local Facebook site (you're a member, aren't you? Membership is free :^) here's my first foray into the not-so-wonderful (as it turned out) world of rock casting...

I need a few small rock castings along the ROW on the East Berlin branch, so I figured I'd use a couple of the Woodland Scenics rock molds I had on-hand.

Problem is (or perhaps, turned out to be) that the Plaster of Paris I had on-hand is probably about 25-30 years old. But it was unopened so I figured it'd be ok. So I mixed it up according to the directions...

... and filled up the molds, scraping & leveling them off with a little putty knife.

Then, I waited for over a week . . .

After over a week, the large rock casting on the left is STILL not cured (see how it's a bit darker/grayer than the other, whiter castings?)

But the worst was when I went to take the castings out, they were all so soft and crumbly. Totally unusable! Certainly nothing like my beginner's luck first time resin casting...

So - what did I do wrong? Heh - could probably be a number of things, but I'll start by purchasing some new Woodland Scenics Lightweight Hydrocal and will try again...

Friday, February 15, 2019

Friday Facebook Follow Fun!

The Valley Local now has a presence on Facebook! Yes, I've created a new "group" called "The Valley Local - Modeling the New Haven RR, Autumn 1948" and you can access it here. As many issues as FB has, one of the enduring reasons to continue to participate in FB is that it remains one of the easiest ways to interact with each other. It's no surprise that it's one of the most pervasive of social media platforms.

It's also super easy to follow not only individuals but also groups - and if you find a group that interests you, it's a given that others following the group feel the same way, and you can interact. It's also super easy to comment on posts and otherwise provide quick feedback (even if only a "Like").

Now, I hope this doesn't discourage folks from following this blog or especially The Valley Local website. And remember, you can always "subscribe" to the blog and get notices of new posts via email. All you have to do is submit your email in the upper left corner of the blog (click here for more info).

The new FB group won't substitute at all for the blog or 'site, but will hopefully be a nice supplement. So, if you're on Facebook and want to add this new functionality, follow The Valley Local on Facebook - and if you do, please be sure to "Like" & comment. It'll be great to see you there!