PROGRESS - 2004
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the latest construction on the CB&Q in Wyoming - the Seattle
staging yard for the NP.
The yard is
complete, but it goes nowhere at this time. This end will lead to
Laurel, which will be mostly out of the picture to the left, on
this same peninsula. From the turnout in the foreground, a
turnback curve will lead right into the Laurel yard.
we're looking at the completed yard from right next to the boiler
(the house heater boiler, that is). The longest tracks in this
yard should be able to hold a forty to fifty car train, and the
shortest will hold a 30+ car train.
is what's left of the basement workroom - over the Christmas
Holidays a friend and I tore down the walls. Thermopolis will be
on the wall straight ahead of us on the lower level (after all
this is cleared), and Casper will be on the wall to the left.
looking east at the beginnings of Laurel, Montana.
overall view of the Laurel peninsula. The yard at left is the
Seattle staging yard. Laurel yard will be on the plywood sheet on
do you get power past a turnout that has isolation gaps in it?
Like this! It may not be exactly prototypical, but it does the
job, at least until I have to use the crossover. Until I get the
main power lines connected in at Laurel, this will do to provide
the transition from Code 100 hidden track to the Code 83 track
that's planned for most of the visible mainline trackage. This is
also the transition from the troublesome homasote roadbed to the
1/4 inch cork. The cork is working very well, so far.
on the hidden curve between Seattle, at the top, and Laurel, off
to the left at the bottom.
where the helix will someday be, we're looking back along the
beginnings of the town of Laurel on the left. In the distance you
can see the two rolls of cork from which I cut roadbed. The larger
roll is 1/4" thick, and is used for mainline trackage (hidden
AND visible, and the smaller is 1/8" thick, and will be used
for sidings, yards, etc. That way I'll get the level change one
sees between main and secondary tracks.
east end of Laurel is finally connected into the NP track that
runs east to the Minneapolis staging yard. Just in front of the
slight curve to the right in this view, I'll be cutting in a
switch for the east end yard ladder. I'll be using Walthers' DCC-friendly
turnouts, and they're not available until next month. I didn't
want that to hold up tracklaying, so I'll just cut the turnout in
when it arrives.
we're looking west from near the east end of Laurel. The silver
gondola (an old Varney car that's part of my "work"
train - it holds rail joiners and some spikes) is sitting where
one of the yard tracks will be.
is an overall view from the corner where Casper yard will begin into
the opposite corner. On the nearest side of the foreground section
of benchwork will be Shobon and Powder River, with a backdrop that
will reach nearly to the ceiling. On the other side will be the Wind
River Canyon, with its mountains reaching up to the ceiling (that's
why the backdrop will be so high on the near side). Kind of an
impressive-looking vista, isn't it?
The floor is also a lot cleaner
than in most of the photos - after we got the old heating unit out
of this room, my wife and I spent some time thoroughly cleaning most
of the train area. Note that most of the stuff that was on the
benchwork in the earlier photos is also gone (but as work continues,
it will be back, I'm sure!).
Thermopolis tables have been built! The two cork rolls are sitting
where the NP mainline and Seattle yard will be located directly
beneath Thermopolis. In the foreground you can see where the Wind
River / Powder River peninsula tables extend to the right. Walt
helped me get the Thermopolis tables and the Wind River Canyon /
Powder River peninsula tables built. It took about four hours. Had I
been working alone it would have taken three or four times as long.
I really do appreciate Walt's help!
the Wind River Canyon / Powder River peninsula, seen from the free
end. We're looking along the Wind River Canyon side. The run through
the Canyon is going to be about twenty feet of slightly meandering
mainline following a river that flows about fifteen or so scale feet
below. Mountains behind the track will reach up to the ceiling along
the center of most of the peninsula. The size of this peninsula is
really going to provide a breath-taking scene, if my scenery
construction efforts do it any justice.
looking down the aisle alongside Laurel, which is off camera to the
left. Directly in front will someday be the north end of
Thermopolis. Right now we're looking at the baseboard for NP's
Minneapolis staging tracks. The two track ends in the lower right of
the picture come from Laurel and Seattle staging. The five tracks of
Minneapolis staging will be added immediately to their left. I still
hope to have the NP mainline loop functional by Christmas, though
the staging yards won't be.
is the east end yard ladder for the Milwaukee staging yard. This
photo was taken on Christmas, 2004, the day after I got the track
overall view of the NP Mainline turnback curve at the east end of
the Milwaukee staging yard. The track leading into the curve from
the left comes directly from the west end of the Seattle staging
yard. I would have combined Seattle and Milwaukee into one big yard,
but it would have been a real nightmare building supports for the
track that will float above the yard because of the yard width I
would have needed. It will be bad enough with the yards as they are.