- Control panel painted and installed.
- Obviously, controls aren't mounted yet!.
- Panel is mounted on hinges for easy access to wiring inside.
- Foothills of large mountain near Shujinkoumachi.
- Cardboard webbing provides basic shape. This doesn't need to be very strong; the plaster shell will be self supporting once it sets.
- The circling track will end up completely enclosed by the mountain. The shell is built down to the track to provide a shelf to protect trains from accidental falls.
- The same foothills, now covered with a plaster shell.
- The shell is made of plaster-impregnated gauze. This is a great material to work with! It's very lightweight, it sets fast, and it doesn't make anywhere near as much mess as paper towels dipped in plaster or hydrocal.
- A steep valley in the mountains near Shujinkoumachi.
- The northbound track (the farther one) will be in a tunnel under this mountain.
- The southbound track crosses the valley on a low bridge.
- The same steep valley, now with its plaster shell.
- To the left, you can see where the tunnel entrance will be for trains leaving Shujinkoumachi (just past the crossover).
- The tunnel exit is barely hidden behind a low ridge from this viewing angle.
- You can see the cardboard "ridgeline" for more mountains to the right.
- The left "peak" won't actually be a peak; it's part of the slope of the mountain that will be built over the circling track.
- The tunnel portal under Shujiyama, for northbound trains from Shujinkoumachi.
- It is scratch-built of ABS plastic.
- If you look closely, you can see ballast on the track near the portal. I painted the ties and ballasted at tunnel portals because that will be impossible to do later.
- Shujiyama's cardboard support structure is clearly visible.
- The backdrop is up, too!
- The thing that looks a little bit like a mouse, halfway up the completed portion of the shell, is actually a small triceratops that has taken up permanent residency on the layout.
- Here's how the backdrop is constructed.
- Simple 1x2 risers were attached to joists. Where necessary, new joists were added to bolster support.
- The backdrop itself is made of inexpensive foam-core, which is very lightweight and rigid, and easily cut with an X-Acto knife (but not, as I discovered, with a utility knife).
- The foam-core was simply glued to the risers with wood glue, then clamped in place until the glue dried.
- Lacking diagonal braces, the backdrop is not as strong as it could be. But it is bolstered by the plaster scenery shell, and it does not need to bear a lot of weight.
- Holes are easily cut through the back to provide access to track that is underneath the scenery.
- The fascia is half complete.
- The flat area above the tunnel portal is where Mikumaji (the temple) will be.
- This is a pretty good overview of the northern end of the mountain pass area.
- The rest of the fascia.
- The raised section over the instrument panel will be cut back some; its final shape depends somewhat on how I structure the urban area there.
- You can still see the resident triceratops on the mountain.
- A northbound 100-series emerges from a tunnel under Shujiyama.
- You can pretend it's winter, and that's why there is no vegetation and everything is white.
- The northbound 100-series passes under the future site of Mikumaji as it heads back under the mountains.
- The northbound 100-series passes a southbound 100-series just north of Mokidate.
- The flat area in the foreground is the site of Mokidate.
- You can faintly see a horizon line I've sketched onto the backdrop as a guide for future painting.
- The 100-series loops through Shujinkoumachi.
- The black flat area is to be covered with city buildings.
- The base brown coloring is latex paint.
- The green texture is several mixed shades of ground foam, secured with acrylic matte medium.
- This is the Mokidate end of the layout.
- The northbound and southbound 100-series are passing near Mokidate.
- The 100-series climbs through the mountains on the way to Mokidate.
- The 100-series enters the tunnel through Shujiyama.
- The one teensy bit of forested area is clearly visible.
- The 100-series passes by the one bit of foresting I did.
- The rock outcropping is cast plaster, painted with latex and acrylics.
- The dense vegetation is a mix of lichen and ground foam.
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This page written and maintained by Matthew Davis.
Last updated Wednesday, September 24, 2003.
To tell me my mountains are too tall, send e-mail to email@example.com.