Skip to main content

Thanks all! I plopped it on the layout in its spot. It does fit and when I regrade the slope to the track to flatten it, I'll pick up some more flat land. There's even a little room for the big Grove crane. Regarding canopy under construction… Not a bad idea and I'll work on it. Regarding the scaffolding, I don't know if there's enough room for it. There doesn't appear to be scaffolding around the actual sites, but I'll check. I appreciate the offer. I still have to do ground cover, chain link security fencing and lighting, and a nice sign telling the good folks of Woodbourne that Bernheim Distilleries is building a new bourbon warehouse. That should all be done in a week or two.

RH On Site Test 1RH On Site Test 2RH On Site Test 8RH On Site Test 10RH On Site Test 12

I also had some fun today with the feature that lets me take pictures with my iPhone 12 Pro using my Apple Watch's camera feature. So I took some closeup shots of some of the building from street level.

Woodbourne Gallery Street ViewAppliance Store Street ViewNewtown Chocolate Street View

EH Interior w Q2

That Pennsy Q2 is one looooonnnnng engine. Wide angle lens exaggerates the length even more. The phone was actually into the engine house. Couldn't have done this shot without the remote actuation. I still have to build the work platforms for the outer edges of the outside tracks; another small multi-media project. The camera position in these images is just a little above a 1:48 person's eye level.

EH Interior w Q2 2

And, based on some input from a Facebook site I'm currently visiting, I purchased two book, both originally written in the 1880s, on actual Victorian architecture with detailed drawings of floor plans and all the nifty little details and another on color schemes of Victorian houses.

Screen Shot 2021-08-24 at 6.38.07 PMScreen Shot 2021-08-24 at 6.37.54 PM

Armed with these books and my 3D printer, my crazy Victorian building spree can go to the next level. It will be much easier to design and build the structure with drawing of real parts with real dimensions instead of estimating from one or two pictures.


Images (12)
  • RH On Site Test 1
  • RH On Site Test 2
  • RH On Site Test 8
  • RH On Site Test 10
  • RH On Site Test 12
  • Woodbourne Gallery Street View
  • Appliance Store Street View
  • Newtown Chocolate Street View
  • Screen Shot 2021-08-24 at 6.38.07 PM
  • Screen Shot 2021-08-24 at 6.37.54 PM
  • EH Interior w Q2
  • EH Interior w Q2 2
Last edited by Trainman2001

Thanks! It's going to be a real hoot seeing how much I can create in 3D using real Victorian references. I ordered the additional brass tubing for more chain link fencing. I will need 96 linear inches of fencing and I had about 52" of brass. I used 1/16" for the verticals, and 3/32" for the horizontals. I drew the signage today and printed it out on photo paper. I used CorelDraw for this task. I also downloaded and printed a bunch of construction site signs to be put on the fencing around the property. I will build a frame to hold the big signs. I always coat my printed photos for modeling with Grumbacher Final Fixitiv to give it an even sheen and protect the ink from moisture.

RH Signage

And you can tell that the main part of the project (bench work) is over because the BENCH IS CLEAN! My new organization really helped especially having permanently mounted racks for tweezers, needle files and pliers. I am doing better putting them back in their spots more often. Plus the racks don't take up precious real estate on the work surface. I may but another shelf on the far wall and more puck LEDs. I like the way they light the work surface.

Bench Clean - Project Done


Images (2)
  • RH Signage
  • Bench Clean - Project Done

Once again, I wrote a post, forgot to hit "post reply" and lost all the images. So we'll do it again. First of all, I hope all of readers in various parts of the country are surviving okay after Ida wreaked it havoc. Just think… sitting here in Louisville, we were missed by the whole deal. The path just went south of the city so we got a smattering of rain. My old home in Bucks County, PA has had more "mid-Western" weather than we have.

I got started on putting "earth" under the rick house. First I protected the bottom of the model with Press N-seal. I traced the model's perimeter with a fat Sharpie, and then masked the inside of the line so Sculptamold (STM) wouldn't get underneath. I mixed up STM with some earth toned Woodland Scenics color and applied it to the site. I'm unsure about what to do with the "retaining wall" question. I built the STM out further making a more severe slope giving me some more flat surface, but did not install a wall. I don't have any material in the shop to do it. I may just add some rock outcroppings there instead of a formal wall.

Then I got interrupted. Our Internet went out again. It seemed to do this every day around mid-afternoon. It's a pain in the butt. I have to got upstairs to the 2nd floor, reboot the modem, reboot the master Netgear Mesh router, and then reboot the Mesh Satellite in the great room and get the TV running again. The Mesh box next to the TV was acting suspiciously. It was taking much too long to re-sync with the master and kept dropping out. We decided to go to Costco and buy a different brand. The modem is new since I replaced it in July. We bought the Google Nest set, and I installed it when we got back. It was much faster to link up and seems quite solid.

So my plastering came to an abrupt end yesterday. Today we're heading to Cincy to the art museum to see the "Monuments Men" exhibit.


I'll finish up the ground work tomorrow.

I continued working on the Cletrac model. My detail level is approaching what I'm looking for. Printing is another question. It's a complicate model and printing setup will be the determining factor as to the model's ultimate success.

Cletrac Status 4Cleatrac Status 3

I finished the auxiliary generator that sits on the right fender. The headlights are the ones from the former model. I will redraw them.

Cletrac Right Side

And the complicated air handling system. With all that piping you can see that printing will be a challenge. Not so much printing per ce, but having the details strong enough to sustain themselves after printing.

Cletrac Air System

And all the stuff happening at the back end.

Cletrac Rear Details

I approach drawings like this as one approaches rigging an 18th century model ship. The completed model is complex, but rigging is done one line at a time. When I do these drawings, I draw each detailed subassembly as a unique drawing. I have a setting I use that blocks out the rest of the drawing and only shows the part I'm drawing. It's a bit tedious, but nowhere near as complex as the finished whole is.


Images (6)
  • IMG_0895
  • Cletrac Status 4
  • Cleatrac Status 3
  • Cletrac Right Side
  • Cletrac Air System
  • Cletrac Rear Details

With the rocks I have to make sure they don't impinge on any locos going by.

I predicted it would happen… and it did. Buzick Construction has asked for an estimate to build a model rick house for them. Cool… right?

Only one problem. Their first thought was a 24,000 barrel house that is basically a full-size real one. My model I estimate could hold 500 barrels, based 18 barrels per rick bay. That's 48X bigger! If it took me three months to build my model… and yes… I don't do this as a full-time/8hrs/day job, it would take years to build a scale, full-size one, and it would be so massive and unwieldy that I'd have to build it at their location. In other words, they're getting out over their skis. I've asked him to give me some more information. I could build one twice as large, or maybe 3X, but 48 times is not realistic. Nor does it provide any additional value. If you want to show people how they're constructed, a selectively compressed model would serve that purpose quite well. Plus the price would be somewhere around $50k which would scare them away… I think.

I've been reading my books on Victorian Architecture and found an important piece of information on the back of the title page. "Plates are reduced 12% in this reprint edition." Boy… glad I found that. It means whatever I scan into the computer needs to be enlarged by 12% and then enlarged to full-sized in SketchUp based on the stated scale on the drawing. It's a complication, not a show stopper.

I just ordered another period architecture book on 2nd Empire structures. All of my buildings with Mansards are considered, "French Designs" or 2nd Empire. The houses that we traditionally call, "Victorian" were actually called, "Queen Anne", "Free Classic" or "English Domestic Styles." We lump all these styles and 2nd Empire into the "Victorian" label. And now you know more trivia.

I'm even thinking about selling Saulena's Tavern to open up that entire city block for more stuff.

Been a while, but some small things have been done.

I got the rest of the base plastering done on the Rick House site and starting crafting the billboard frames. Finished the detailed drawings of the Cletrac M2 High Speed Tractor, and am working on restoring a propeller and building a base for a large metal model (commission job).

The plaster is one and now I'll have to craft the rock outcroppings on the rail facing edge.

RH Earth Work Done

I'm building the billboard frame in the same way as I did the rick house: on a plan covered with thin poly sheeting. I cut the poly from one of the disposable drop cloths I bought several years ago when we had the "Great Dishwasher Leaking Disaster" that could have taken out the entire village of Woodbourne, a la Hurricane Ida. Measuring the gaps with the digital caliper and transferring the measure to the stock makes for very accurate fits. I just bought a new one at Harbor Freight. They're $20 bucks and are basically disposable. When the edges get dull I buy a new one. A Starrett precision digital caliper cost many times more, but the metallurgy on a Starrett is incomparable compared to this Chinese stuff. Chinese heat treating or alloys (or both) are terrible. I wonder how they can build jet engines? If I was a professional machinist, I'd have nothing but Starrett.

RH Billboard Frame Start

The M2 is complete including a pretty detailed engine. It took me hours to draw all this. I'm now playing around getting the subassemblies ready for printing. I'm not happy with the number of supports that are ending up on very detailed areas. I may have to rethink my scheme and separate them out more so I can keep the details facing up. Currently the model has 18 subassemblies. For such a small machine it's sure complicated.

Cletrac Remake Exploded

For the airplane project, I drew a stand and am working at a local sheet metal shop owned by a friend. The stand is 18 gauge stainless steel. It's a real bear to work and is tough as nails. I'm still not sure about the structural integrity of the design. On the left is what I've had cut so far, but the right is the mod I'm going to make to ensure it's solid. The model is large and very heavy. I'm afraid that the first iteration is going to be very weak in torque and there's not enough support on the tongue that's going to attach to the model. The first hole in the tongue is for a 1/4-20 screw. The second is for a 5/16" pin.

Fully boxed made out of TIG welded stainless, the re-designed pedestal will be very strong. I did the layout, the foreman did the major cutting on a very large power shear and the folding of the base. I did the cutting and bending of the pedestal. I'll be back in the shop on Tuesday to finish it up.

Stand L188

I'll keep y'all up to date on all my various activities. I also bought a new kind of build plate overlay for the printer. You first glue on a 3M adhesive magnetic sheet and then you simply snap on a flexible build surface. The surface is removable and you bend it to simply pop off all the printed piece, instead of using a razor scraper to get under them for removal. If it works it will streamline that sort-of-sloppy job. It changes the build plate thickness a bit so I downloaded a small 3D printable part that's a Z-axis extender shim to recalibrate the machine for the thicker plate. The Fulament company offered specifically designed extender shims for each of the printers on the market.

Have a great weekend!


Images (4)
  • RH Earth Work Done
  • RH Billboard Frame  Start
  • Cletrac Remake Exploded
  • Stand L188

Mitutoyo is ơn par with Brown & Sharpe and Starrett. You don't need to replace them…ever. Chinese $20 calipers wear out every couple of years.

Potpourri day. Working on the billboard, and the turbo-prop propeller for the L-188 restoration project.

Building a silicone mold without applying mold release before pouring the top half is a terrible boo-boo. While I was literally able to rip the mold apart, it destroyed the clean parting line making a mold that works marginally at best.

But persistent me tried another pour after opening up the vent hole where the previous air pocket was. It did make a propeller. It needed some added work with Bondic to make it whole, but as a test article it was a good proof of concept. It's not perfect and a bit warped, but it is a propeller and closing matches the master.

L-188 2nd Casting Attempt

But, I'm also working on plan B. I decided to try and 3D print one. That required drawing this propeller in scale on SketchUp. It was one of most difficult things I ever drew. The blade changes sizes in three directions: twists, gets thicker and tapers wider near the root. SU is not happy with shaped surfaces, but it technically can do it.

Here's the finished drawing showing all the edges and polygons on its surface.

L-188 Final Prop Drawing

The drawing is made up of a series of formers or ribs, just like an flying RC model. And like a model airplane build, the ribs have to smoothly flow from one to the next so the skin on the surface is also smooth. The tool to do this is the SANDBOX. There are a couple of options and the one I use is  "From Contours" Theoretically, the skin should form cleanly going from rib to rib. But that's not exactly the way it came out. Instead, the skin formed in a series of layers going at right angles into the shape rather than across it. I had to go back and remove any errant layer and then hand build the skin drawing a series of triangles from the nodes on each curve of each rib. It took hours. Twisting the parallel portion wasn't hard. You extrude the length from root area to tip, pick just the tip and rotate it. With the root end fixed, the entire blade twists perfectly. The root area was an entirely different animal. Here I had to start with the largest shape at the root, copy it and move the copy forward along a pre-drawn guidelines that had both the twist and bottom taper, and then scale each rib smaller than the last as I moved towards the parallel section. Then I had to clean up the mess from all that errant skinning. I worked a couple of hours yesterday and three more today, but…. SUCCESS. I looked at some videos to see some of the techniques, but in the end I had use pure muscle to clean up the mess.

The end result measures within a couple of thousandths of the overall diameter of the original. I used my digital caliper to measure all the key metrics to build it. It's now on the printer and will be done in an hour or so. I noticed one corner of a blade has a missing chunk, but that's all correctable with Bondic.

L-188 Prop Rendering

If the printed versions work, I may stay with that. If not, I will re-mold the prop and cast more using the low-melting point alloy so it will be real metal. I know what I have to do with the mold to make a better part. It's hard to get some of this stuff right the first time around. I'll post an image later when it comes off the printer. And I will remember to use mold release!

I've purchased and am in the process of installing a removable, flexible, magnetic build plate. It's magnetic stainless steel that is quite thin. When you take the plate off the machine, you remove the thin plate off its magnetic back plate and flex it to pop all the parts off WITHOUT scraping with a razor blade. It saves time, saves parts and saves fingers. The magnetic portion is held to the existing build plate with a very strong 33M pressure-sensitive adhesive. I had a new build plate that wasn't using so I was able to install this new upgrade while still printing. You have to let it set over 24 hours before exposing it to raw resin. I'm interested in seeing how this baby works. This image doesn't tell you much. It's just a nice shiny plate sitting on my photo table. Without scraping, the binding surface will remain in much better shape.

3D Printing Fulament Magnetic Plate

While all this was going on, I finished up the second billboard frame, added the graphics and glued on the posts. Next session, I'll put some cross-bracing on the leg bottoms and it will ready to install on the rick house site. The graphics are very glossy and wouldn't be in real life so I'm going to use some matte coating to kill the shine.

RH Billboard WIP 2

Tomorrow a.m. I'm probably going back to the sheet metal shop to get the L-188 stand welded. When I get home, if there's time, I can finish the billboard and start working on site rocks and ground cover.

Later this week we're heading back east for a wedding celebration, and will be there for next week until the following Saturday. And I still don't have my self-driving Tesla… drat!

On another front, I am not happy to wax political, but this needs to be said. I got a text from my hairdresser last night cancelling my appointment tomorrow due to the fact that she's tested positive for COVID-19. What makes this so noteworthy is that she, and her partner husband, and he son (who all work in the salon) refused to get vaccinated, wore masks only when they were forced to, and generally came up with more bullpoop reasons for this behavior. What makes matters worse, she's 60, immuno-compromised, has RA, takes Humira, and generally has trouble with colds and flu. Her husband is a smoker.

My daughter, wife and I have used this salon for over 12 years, and the person considers me an intelligent person, but I couldn't get through to her that she was simply playing Russian Roulette. She has a 2 year-old granddaughter who she watches a couple days a week and her youngest son is expecting his first child imminently. All of this in now in jeopardy. With her pre-existing conditions, she is a person who could have a terrible if not fatal case. She's had other vaccines in her life, so all the rationalizations were just that… nonsense. She was also putting all of her clients at risk, including a spry women who just turned 101.

To vaccinate or not vaccinate is not a right of choice! Your decision does not only affect you. It affects everyone you come in contact with, love, take care of or are friends or co-workers with. If you choose to smoke knowing full-well the consequences, and you die from all the crap smoking can do, you don't kill other people in the process. If you want to ride a Harley without a helmet, you won't survive a spill, but your head isn't going to kill anyone else. Spreading a highly infectious, killer disease is a different ball game. It's like thinking you have the "Right" to drive down the wrong entry ramp on the Interstate and drive into on-coming traffic. In that case you will kill others besides yourself. Time to get back to real life. If you are not vaccinated, DELTA will get you. It's just a matter of time.


Images (5)
  • L-188 2nd Casting Attempt
  • L-188 Final Prop Drawing
  • L-188 Prop Rendering
  • 3D Printing Fulament Magnetic Plate
  • RH Billboard WIP 2
Last edited by Trainman2001

My rick house is 16" deep X 15" wide. That's 64 X 60 scale feet wide. The 24,000 barrel house is 160' L X 86" W. Or 3,849 sq. ft. versus 12,800 sq. ft. In model terms, the real one would be 40" X 21.5".

Then you have 70 feet tall versus about 18' tall for the model. So to take the math further, you have 896,000 cu. ft. for the real one and 69,282. So the real one would be 13 X more volume than the model's prototype. It's a whole lot bigger than the model that I would want to build.

I did get the print done. There's one area that was pulling off a bit and I can fix that by adjusting the supports. Here it is in the UV post-cure chamber. The blue color is due to being bathed in 405nm UV light.

L-188 3D Print Prop in Curre


Images (1)
  • L-188 3D Print Prop in Curre


Got a terrific stand finished today for the Elektra. I cut and bent most of the pieces and Jim, the welder, at Gettler Sheet Metal, did a masterful job closing all my ridiculously bad joints. Bending 18 gauge stainless isn't my forté and I didn't have bend allowances built into the plan. Bend allowance added dimension needed as the metal stretches to accommodate a bend. The sharper the bend and/or the heavier the gauge, the more stretch. It's not much, but it can add up. To make matters worse, while my design was cool, it was also difficult since there wasn't a right angle in the entire design. Regardless… we did it.

Before closing up the base we welded about 5 pounds of steel plate inside to counterweight the whole deal. By boxing in the upright, all the movement in the yaw direction was eliminated. It is very stable. We cleaned up most of the welds at Gettler's and I have a few more to do in my shop.

L-188 on Stand

A 1/4-20 cap screw holds the plane solidly to the base.

L-188 Stand Bolt

Additionally, there's a 5/16" stainless rod welded to the stand that slides into the other hole on the plane's belly. it's not going anywhere.

L-188 Stand almost there

I added four silicone feet to the bottom to make a nice, scratch-free structure.

And a perfect prop just came off the printer. I started using the Fulament flexible, magnetic build plate and it works pretty well. The part didn't pop off as shown in the video, but it did pop all the edges free so my plastic scraper slid right under to remove the part. I like it.


Images (3)
  • L-188 on Stand
  • L-188 Stand Bolt
  • L-188 Stand almost there

Thought I'd post some more non-railroad status pics. The L-188 restoration is done and I'm delivering it on Wednesday. I ended up 3D printing the missing propeller and finding a way to really replicate metal. I first sprayed Tamiya rattle-can Silver, then rubbed on a coating of A-K interactive "real metal" wax-based metallic silver (like Rub-n-Buff), but it wasn't reflective enough. At my LHS they suggested buying one of the broader tip Molotow Chrome Pens and decanting its contents to air brush it. That worked perfectly. What happened next was almost a catastrophe. There was some cream-colored blemishes on the left wing mid-section and inner nacelle. I attempted to polish it off, but it didn't budge. I then tried IPA, no response. Then I used the nuclear option… I wiped it with MEK. I then found out the truth. The blemish was on not ON TOP of the paint. IT WAS PRIMER SHOWING THROUGH. The blemish now became bigger… much bigger. I needed to refinish at least that part of the wing.

L-188 Paint Blemish FIx Not

The plane's metallic paint had a definite yellow cast. Don't know if it's the actual paint color or the yellowing of the top clear coat. I used a mix of Alclad gloss aluminum and Alclad light burnt iron. I could have even made it more yellow. Looking straight at the paint its color is very close, but when viewed obliquely, the paint I used looks darker. Again, it's a huge improvement over the mess that I made. I used Alclad aqua-based clear gloss, and then after letting it cure for 24 hours, rubbed it out with my abrasive polishing set (from 3200 grit to 12,000 wet-sanding pads) and then with polishing compound. The gloss is the same. From this angle the color is really close.

L-188 Wing Refinish

If you can't tell, the 3D prop is on the far right. The chrome props have a different cast (more blue) than the made prop, but it's close enough and the client is pleased. From this angle, my wing panel is a bit darker. You can see how reflective the panel is.

L-188 Finished 3

Now onto the M2 Service Tractor. I'm almost done this major project. I've got two more parts to print. I've reprinted several items to get better results. For example: I found that making the frame 3 pieces (frame, winch and bumper) created a warped and weak structure. I was able to successfully print it in one piece.

I also implemented a new process. I ordered and installed the Fulament flexible build plate on the my Elegoo Mars. This was a FaceBook ad, believe it or not. It's a two-part affair with a 3M adhesive magnetic layer that adhered to your existing build plate and a thin, stainless steel build surface that made of spring steel. The build surface is held magnetically to the 3M magnet sheet. If you've had a successful print, you no longer need to unclamp the entire build plate to remove the printed parts. You simply remove the magnetic surface.

The surface is spring steel so you can massively bend it to break the part's bond on the surface. Big parts just pop off…. no more scraping. But in my case, since I'm printing so many small parts, bending the build surface doesn't pop them off. If I work it a bit the edges my release making it much easier to scrape the parts off. Either way, not having to remove the entire build plate assembly says a lot of time and clear up. And best of all. The plate has great part adhesion and my failure rate has dropped to almost zero.

Something else has improved production rate. I now put on supports in the following steps.

1. Use auto-supports set to "Heavy" and do "Platform" only. This applies supports all over the part as long as they can be reached directly from the base.

2. Remove all heavy supports above those that are holding just the bottom edges of the main part.

3. I redesigned my "Medium" supports to give them fat base posts (almost the same as heavy), but with much thinner attachment points. I found with the medium and light support original settings, the supports themselves were failing causing the upper parts of the job to fail.

4. Use the upside down view in the ChiTuBox slicer and apply by hand, medium and light supports to areas that are showing red and bright red color indicating unstable areas or areas that will create islands. ChiTuBox is very good at showing where island-prone areas are.

Between the new build plate and the changes I've made in support stratagem, my failures are almost gone. There's still the occasional failure due to a lousy design, for which I take full responsibility.

I'm only building the 1:48 version. The fellow who wanted the 1:72 bowed out when I raised the price due to even more drawing time would be consumed to modify the 1:48 detail level to work at 1:72. For example: that air handling modules would not print that way in 1:72. I'm going to paint the models before delivering them as a result of the engine being in a place that would defy painting after assembly. The tractor is not glued in this image. Just posing.

Cletrac Trial Fits

I made a lot of those lights to get ones that I didn't break.

Cletrac Seat and Light

I was even able to print the "Cletrac" logo on the exhaust manifold a la prototype. You won't see much of the engine since it's quite buried in the cowling.

Cletrac Logo on Manifold

Model should be done sometime next week. Meanwhile, I'll get back to finishing the rick house.


Images (6)
  • L-188 Finished 3
  • L-188 Paint Blemish FIx Not
  • L-188 Wing Refinish
  • Cletrac Trial Fits
  • Cletrac Seat and Light
  • Cletrac Logo on Manifold
Last edited by Trainman2001

Been a while.

First of all, Mark Boyce is now the proud owner of the Idaho Hotel. We met at a Sheetz station on route 22 in Monroeville, PA and made the transfer. We were on our way back to L'ville from State College, PA.

Second, the M2 Cletrac project ended with delivery to the owner of Scale Reproductions, Inc., and he's going to put it on display to see if additional sales are in the offing.

Lastly, I've started working on the SB-60B Seahawk Helicopter and will finish up the Rick house site in the coming weeks. I now have a 16 X 8.5" bare spot in town that's wont for a new structure. I haven't yet decided what that's going to be. I will take suggestions from my readers.

The M2 project was very gratifying since the entire thing was created just from photos resulting from a Google search and one crude line drawing that gave the overall size of the unit.

Cletrac Finished 4

The windshield on the right side unit is NOT cockeyed. That was an optical result of the angle to the camera.

Cletrac Finished 3Cletrac Finished 2Cletrac Finished 1

The helicopter has a critical rotor part that was molded backwards! The part and its pair should have both been the same hand. Instead they produced a right and left hand version. The left hand is wrong. I found instructions on the web to cobble together a correctly-facing version cutting and gluing. Instead I redrew the part and 3D printing it. I only need one, but I'm printing a bunch to make them available to others building this kit. My first run only had 30% successful parts. The rest stuck to the teflon. Don't know why that happened. The printer's been pretty good lately.

The part has a pretty thin part and I'm redoing it to fatten it up a bit. I measured the part to the nearest thousandths, and then drew it 100 times larger in SketchUp. SketchUp likes to work in larger dimensions. I then reduced it by .01 to make it back the tiny model size.

HD33 Final DrawingHD33 First RunSH-60b Part HD33 Cleaning


Images (7)
  • Cletrac Finished 4
  • Cletrac Finished 3
  • Cletrac Finished 2
  • Cletrac Finished 1
  • HD33 Final Drawing
  • HD33 First Run
  • SH-60b Part HD33 Cleaning

Myles, The M2 certainly is a strange beast, but your models look great! 

For everyone else reading, it was great meeting Myles and his wife Michelle to pickup the Idaho Hotel.  We talked for about 20 minutes and then headed on our ways.  Myles and Michelle are both very friendly and easy to talk with.  I am glad to have met them in person.

I haven't decided where to put the Idaho Hotel on my layout, but this space was open.  Myles commented that he thought it was great that I can get a full view of the most interesting side, the front.  It is just the ticket for a West Virginia mountain inn on my layout.

2021-10-10 21.12.22


Images (1)
  • 2021-10-10 21.12.22

Now for something completely diffierent...

I had a couple more commission projects involving the 3D printer. One is recreating the pilots on a K-Line NH "Jet" electric loco. The Zamac cast pilots had gone to the dark side and were completely crystalized and were crumbling. I attempted to drill and wire the front cross-member so I could repair them, but as the drill entered the metal it just crumbled more. It had to be a complete remake starting with drawing the pilot. It was hard to determine the sizes since I was looking at pieces. I snug them together as best as I could to get some overall measurements and took pictures. I scaled it all in SketchUp and then enlarged the drawing 100x so SU was happier. SketchUp is funny when you're working at small sizes.

Jet Pilot Front

You can see the fracture lines permeating this entire part. Our models will not last for ever even if don't ever play with them.

Jet Profile

There's actually a critical part missing. There is a flat plate that was attached to the tangs on the right side that had the two countersunk screw holes which holds this thing to the trucks.

Here was the drawing. I radiused some of the corners to prevent fractures there. The holes need countersinking as a post-process.

Screen Shot 2021-11-03 at 10.55.55 AM

I drew it with the integral ladders. On the original the ladders are added plastic pieces (as are the air lines). Here was the test print. The "X" brace is there to stabilize the part and keep it from warping. It does get in the way of the remote coupler leads, but that's not a show-stopper. Wire I could have printed this with the air hoses attached, they would be fragile and probably break off prematurely.

Jet Pilot Fin 1

Yesterday I took it to the hobby shop and we tried it on. It fit perfectly! I'm now going to print one for the other end. One of the ladders broke away and I changed the design to add an upper brace. The broken ladder was fixed with CA at the hobby shop.

Another quickie project for another fellow who works at the hobby shop. There's a website as part of the PRR Historical Society where you can design your own PRR station signs. He requested one for the "Sharon" station. I drew the size in the app, then imported the drawing into SU. I re-drew the sign with 3D raised Copperplate text.

Here's the sign as it appeared on the website.

Screen Shot 2021-11-06 at 11.30.13 AM

And here's the SU drawing.

Screen Shot 2021-11-06 at 11.36.03 AM

And the finished print. Thin objects like this only take a few (15) minutes to print. The do warp a bit so it needs to be glue to a rigid substrate. Took about 8 cents worth of resin to do this.

PRR Station Signs

The First Build manufactory at University of Louisville is now open again to the public so I'm starting to noodle the next projects that will need laser cutting. They have a couple of 48" monsters there that do just about anything.


Images (7)
  • Jet Pilot Front
  • Jet Profile
  • Screen Shot 2021-11-03 at 10.55.55 AM
  • Jet Pilot Fin 1
  • Screen Shot 2021-11-06 at 11.30.13 AM
  • Screen Shot 2021-11-06 at 11.36.03 AM
  • PRR Station Signs

I think I have the next project.

In my previous Bucks County, PA town, Newtown, there is a landmark hardware store. Newtown Hardware and it's building has been a working hardware store since its construction in 1869. The building burned in 1899 and was rebuilt to its original design. The only change I can see is the pediment at the front roof peak. It's got some really nice decorative brickwork and cornices on the front that will make some interesting laser cutting like the distillery, and there's sufficient details for some 3D printing as well. I was able to get some good images from Google Earth and the building was given a 3D skin. On Newtown Hardware's website there's some history and where I got this great straight-on frontal shot with the original roof details. Combining the two, I am able to create a reasonable replica in SketchUp. Being a traditional store front, I can use Tichy store front plastic if I don't want to fuss with that.

Originally the building was two stores: the hardware on the left and a dry goods store on the right. The hardware owners bought the other store and opened the wall. That double store exists to this day. They still have the wooden drawers with the screws and nails. The floors squeak when you walk and it has a neat old hardware store smell. It is a treasure.

According to Google earth, the building looks like it's 45 feet wide and about 54 feet deep. I may have to selectively compress the depth, but I have the width where Idaho was. Here's some screen shots as I draw it on SketchUp.

This is a street view shot from Google in SU's Match Photo where I'm drawing the 3D version directly over this image. There is some differences in building shape due to distortion from the Google mobile camera.


Here's the frontal shot superimposed over the drawing. Comparing this to the above you can see the pediment change at the roof peak. This image also gives good detail of the fancy brickwork. After the distillery, I know that I can create that. The center door leads to upstairs apartments. I don't know what holiday was being celebrated… probably July 4th. There's bunting blocking the view of the below-window area.


And here's the above superimposed over the match photo contemporary image.


And because Google Earth lets you see the backs of existing building especially when they've been 3D skinned, Here's the back with the image next to it to show the window placement. There're more windows to go into the back. The actual lot actually drops off front to back due to the downhill slope to Newtown Creek that runs behind the building's parking lot. Therefore; there's a basement access in the back at the lowest level. My lot is level so I'm going to have a metal door lift up basement entrance in the back. There's a back door to the store up to that pressure-treated lumber deck you see in the rear image. I will make that door ground level. Being a hardware store gives a lot of opportunity for stuff in the back lot to add interest.


The building is three stories plus. It will work since the Woodbourne Gallery is already that big. Only drawback is the front will be facing away from the viewer from the front aisle. That's why I have to make the back as interesting as possible. As Rachel Maddow says, "Watch this space."


Images (4)
  • NYT WIP 3
  • NTH WIP 1
  • NYT WIP 4
  • NTH WIP 2
Last edited by Trainman2001

Thought you'd all like a progress report on the Newtown Hardware House project. I contacted the manager of the store and he took some more detailed pictures of the building. He was very interested in it. Our Philly friends also know the owner of the store and she wants to share the project with her. They may want a model of their own. The brickwork on the facade and particularly the pediment is pretty complex, but after my distillery project experience, I know exactly how I'm going to lay it out for laser cutting. I will 3D print all the cornice details including 3 different corbel styles. The sides and rear aren't very remarkable, but the first floor windows have shutters. I can buy the self-stick laser board from Stephen Miley at Rail Scale models. The walls will be 1/4" MDF. I think the stone lintels over the windows will be laser board and I may try and engrave some texture in them. I could also 3D print them with the texture. We'll see… Each project that preceded this one gave me the experience needed to master all this nuance.

NT Hardware Ver 1.skp

This is a view of the real pediment. Notice the different levels of relief on the various brick details. I still have to put in that round window. Don't know what the mullions on that one are since a tree blocks a direct shot from across the street. We're going to be back the area over the New Years holiday and the tree will be free of leaves so I'll be able to get a better shot of it. You can also get a good view of the lintels in this image. There's three kinds of dentil molding in that front as well. Like I said, it was more complex than you originally think.

NHH Pediment

The Seahawk project is coming along. I've purchased aftermarket resin kits for the right T700 engine, main rotor, tail rotor and the hinge assembly for the folding tail boom.

The engine took a week to build with all the added piping. It was worth it. The top one is the kit engine that will not be exposed. The bottom is a ResKit model of the GE T700 turboshaft engine. Painting this will be fun.

SH-60B T700 Primed

I'm also building the main rotor kit and it's just as complex and challenging as the engine. It too will add a tremendous amount of interest in the build. What you see hear is already 16 pieces all glued together with Gel CA. There's a large amount of hydraulic lines that get added to this. The naval version is more complicated than the Black Hawk version due to the requirement to fold the blade while onboard ship. Those twin pins you see are hydraulically actuated to insert steel pins into fingers on the blades to lock them in the operating position. When the blades are locked, the pins are in and can be detected easily by those brass straps being in the "in" position.

SH-60B Main Rotor Rotor Lock Indicators


Images (4)
  • NT Hardware Ver 1.skp
  • NHH Pediment
  • SH-60B T700 Primed
  • SH-60B Main Rotor Rotor Lock Indicators

I'm almost finished the Hardware House drawings. All that's left is changing the trim under the front store windows. It was a bear to draw, but it's pretty close to the real thing. I'm also making progress on the SH-60B Seahawk. Piping the main rotor was also a bear and tested my mettle to the max. Still have two tiny pipes to add that I missed. No one would know.

Newtown Hardware RenderingNewtown Hardware House Rear Render

Three different corbel and dentil molding designs in one building front….

Screen Shot 2021-12-05 at 3.02.49 PM

For reference, here's the back. I'm not sure how to handle that scary fire escape. Notice the 6 X 6s holding the whole deal up. Tichy makes a fire escape set in styrene which I think I already bought. It could be printed, but it wouldn't be easy. Might be easier to solder it together out of brass.

The real site sloped back exposing more of the basement in the back. Mine is flat so I'll be using a different basement entrance.


Here's the rotor head. All the wires are magnet wire (less than .3mm) and are in 0.012" holes.

SH-60B Main Rotor Piping Done 1SH-60B Main Rotor Primed

The transmission is just as complex without all the hydraulics.

SH-60B Main Rotor Trans Comp 1

The real one… All the complexity under the mech's feet in the hydraulics bay IS NOT reproduced in the model nor will I attempt to do it. Those floppy weights on the ends of the four arms in the picture and my model is the Biflar vibration damping system. Those weights are tungsten and they move freely about an axis acting as a pendulum that cancels at the source rotor induced vibration. It reduces in-cabin vibration by 55%. The fact that this is a Navy bird drastically increases the complexity of the rotor head to enable the rotor blades to be folded (as they are in the image). Both the swinging of the rotor to the stowage position AND the locking of the blades in the fly position are hydraulic and remote controlled. One more pipe to add when the blades are installed is the nitrogen crack sensing system connection. Blades are hollow and nitrogen filled. It there is a crack, nitrogen leaks out and is sensed. It sends and alarm to the cockpit to immediately get the blade changed.

SH-60B Rotor Detail w Mechanic


Images (11)
  • Newtown Hardware Rendering
  • Newtown Hardware House Rear Render
  • Screen Shot 2021-12-05 at 3.02.49 PM
  • image0
  • image3
  • image6
  • image7
  • SH-60B Main Rotor Piping Done 1
  • SH-60B Main Rotor Primed
  • SH-60B Main Rotor Trans Comp 1
  • SH-60B Rotor Detail w Mechanic

Thanks Mark and others…

The store would like a model if I wanted to build them one. What I don't know is are they willing to pay something for it. I suggested that I'd eat the labor if they would pay for the materials. That's the deal I gave the Heaven Hill Bourbon Experience Center which has a distillery model.

Now I have to import all the flat parts into CorelDraw and scale so I can produce the laser cutting drawings. I can buy the Self-Adhesive RC Board from Stephen Miley at Rail Scale Models which I'll use for the fine detail flat parts, i.e., windows, doors and some trim. All the rest of the flat parts will be cut at U of L's Maker's Lab out of stock they have on hand. All the 3D parts are already designed since I had to draw them all in the master drawing. That said, the long cornices have to be broken apart into smaller chunks to fit on my modest little printer. And I'll have to draw all those bricks! I am better at that than I used to be.

Add Reply


OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
800-980-OGRR (6477)

Link copied to your clipboard.