Adding a Field (and other random stuff)

People need to eat, so I planted a field of food stuff.

This is one of those very nice, but also somewhat expensive, sheets of material that are coming to the market from Faller, Heki, and the rest.  This is the F-180471 field from Faller.  Advertised as HO, but really, who's telling?  Those HO guys just don't have the same healthy crops us N'ists do!

I planted this on the corner...actually, its the very first corner that you see of the layout when you enter the 'train room', so it has to be something that looks 'right' but also not something that takes too much attention.  Here's a shot from the other side of the corner. 

The nice thing about this field in this location on the corner is that its still a decent place to set down your controller, train box, or whatever else you happen to be holding but can't find a third hand to hold it.

I've also been playing around with an old Minitrix Class 47 I picked up off eBay a couple of years ago and which has been gathering dust for two years.  I have some 'free-lancing' ideas for this, so I stripped the paint (which was also a test for some other things I want to try and do in the future).  Note to my British friends: The original Minitrix BR blue paint was pretty rough looking and couldn't be saved. Please don't hate me.
The above is after the second coat of 'stripper' (I used Testor's ELO stripper, which seems to work nicely).  The yellow paint was really difficult to remove, but after 4 coats of stripped, and rupping with an old tooth brush, I finally got it down to its pristine shell.

I also 'chipped' it as well.  I used the directions from the folks at the Modellbahn Team Koln Bonn with some help from Google translate to ensure I was getting it 'right'.   I actually think I've seen enough of these older non-DCC circuit board types that I can almost do a DCC install without instructions anymore.  Now that's an achievement! 
 So back to painting...I fired up the airbrush and had some specific ideas for a paint scheme I wanted to try out.  Here's the first coat with Tamiya 'sky':
And after a coat of "Euro Grey" and red, this is what I wound up with:
Yeah, I didn't like it either...so it was back to the ELO for another round of paint stripping.  We'll see what happens next.

Speaking of digitalization...another locomotive that I've had forever was one of those little 0-6-0 tank engines (a BR 89) that come with those super-cheap starter sets.   I was surprised to see a couple of tutorials on how to add a decoder to one of these, and I also really wanted to give it some lights.   It seemed impossible given its small size, but I gave it a shot.  Surprisingly it worked!  I had to mill out some openings in the lights, and only the two bottom lights will be lit, but this was an excellent application of the tiny SMD's I got from LED Baron.  The worst part of this has been trying to find a place for the bloody resistor! Man, those things are huge when you try to fit them inside these little locomotives!
That's all the updates for now.  I've also been tinkering away on one of my Kato buildings, which I'll probably share later this week.   Summer is coming, so blogging will slow down as outdoor activities become a reality once again.  And thanks to everyone for all your kind comments on my video.  Its great to get that kind of encouragement, and I hope to pass it along to you!


  1. Hey! Great job. :D I really like the new field... as I told you before, my new layout will be mostly scenery-like, so I really apreciate this update :)

    Great job with the loks. I've also digitized a couple of old loks, but newver looked at that tutorials.. I'm gonna read them to learn more. I've always soldered the wires as written in the decoder's manual :)

    Sadly, back to the scenery, I see that major procuder (Noch, Faller...) have many things for HO.. but something can be also used in N :) hopefully :)

    Next time.. :)

  2. Very cool, as always! :)
    The field is a fantastic touch. I might add something like this to a portion of my Temple area.
    The repaint is looking grand as well. Love to see the process photos! A big help.
    Great stuff!


  3. Hello Jerry ,

    Nice work on the field , i use 2 mn fiber for the field ...


  4. Hi - spent the last 5 hours reading through the entire blog, and I'm gonna keep going until I get to the end, but just a quick note on Resistors:

    You can actually get resistors in SMD form - the same packaging size as the LEDs you're using, which can really help save space when you'd otherwise have to cram in the 'standard' leaded resistors.

    Thoroughly enjoying the blog, it's so nice to see something so incredible come together bit by bit!

  5. Hi - love the work! I've just spent the last 5 hours reading through the entire blog and it'll probably keep me going until bed time!

    Just a quick note on resistors - you can also get them in SMD form, just as the LEDs. It'll save a lot of space inside the Loco when otherwise you'd have to cram (as you did) a typical leaded resistor in there.