Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Fast Growers.

Contrary to general opinion and going by my own experience, palm trees grow very quickly after planting, as can be seen in this photo. It may have something to do with using white glue as a fertiliser.... I couldn't say.

           A good deal more detailing needed.

           Alexandra yard is fairly busy today.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

A Palm Tree or two.

       In the Australian country side we frequently find a lone palm tree planted by a homestead
     (farmhouse to all non-Aussies).
      Well, I checked out the HO palms available on the net, some of which are quite nice. In
 the end I decided to attempt to model some myself .The first thing to find was a suitable trunk.

In my garden I found the dry flower stalks of the Red Hot Poker (Kniphofia),

which seemed a good likeness (1). I found some plastic fronds in my local $2 shop among
 a small arrangement. It made a quite acceptable palm.

 Some time later I came across an avenue of 'Monkey Puzzle' Trees (Araucaria), which
         had, it being  Autumn, just dropped their (what I assume to be) either spent flower stalks or shed foliage (2).
These were filled with  acrylic 'No More Gaps' and painted with acrylic 'Burnt Umber',
         then dry brushed a fawn colour.The fronds were glued around the top of the trunk (clamped, 
one by one). The finished top was then dipped in hot water and shaped downwards and
  finally painted appropriately.

Araucaria cunninghamii

I am fairly happy with the results, but will be working to improve the palms further. They are basically just generic palms.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

A Display would be nice

 We have a terrible fire season here in Australia, mainly from the middle of January right into
March. During that time I usually pack away my more valuable locos, rolling stock and built structures to a safe place. When the danger appears to have passed and I return everything to the train room, there is usually is a big mess.
       It occurred to me that, instead of putting away most of the boxes into the cupboard, I might
like to have their contents displayed in a nice cabinet, where they would also be protected from dust.
        I had some wood grain flooring, which seemed most suitable. I bought a 1200mm x 600 mm x 3mm clear sheet of perspex and built the cabinet around it. It has six storage spaces and I'm very happy with it.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Molesworth revisited

       I thought it was time I had another look at 'Molesworth' (my version :-) ). I lengthened the
platform as much as I could, changed the pitch of the roof and added the fence. I found a pack of Atlas picket fences which seemed good enough to satisfy my (modest) standards. As they were
all meant for level ground I had to disassemble a length and glue it together at the appropriate
angle for the ramp. I found a white metal kit of a 1000 l water tank with stand. The pack didn't have the tap it should have had, so I had to make up a passable one. Downpipes have yet to be added.

 I also finally got around to ballasting the yard, which apart from the main consist of an
 extremely short passing loop, only just long enough for a DERM.                                                                                                                                       
At the Warrnambool show I had bought one of Outback Models' country cottage kits, which
 off and on took my butterfingers a good two days to put together. It is a very nice kit, but I haven't   finished with it yet and it is not in the right position. Not happy with the roof either - will redo it.      
  There is also a scratchbuilt  garage for it    .                                                                                                                  The whole area in the foreground of this scene is yet to be landscaped...         

Enough for today.