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                    This layout was conceived of when two things happened in rapid sucession,
                    1. I purchased a supposedly defunct Marklin 0-6-0 tank engine
                        at the local hobby store for $5, which I was able to coax back to life, and
                    2. I saw a fairly nice, solid briefcase at a local thrift store.

The planning began.

As an avid armchair modeler, I had plenty of small layouts planned, both
in my head, and on paper.  I chose the tried and true "Gore and Daphetid"
track plan for several reasons: I wanted a couple of "industry" tracks, and
I wanted at least one trestle.  John Allen had a curved trestle on his high
line, but my extremly tight radiuses left no room to put it.

Track Plan


This first picture shows much of my benchwork, which was created
by cutting a piece of 3/16ths masonite hardboard to fit securely into
the bottom of my briefcase, then drawing the track plan onto a
piece of 1/8th masonite, and, using the "cookie cutter" method, cutting
the plan out, leaving a gap for the planned bridge.

Shown above and below, I used blue and pink 1" stryrofoam
insulation boards not only to create the mountains, but also to
support the masonite roadbed at the correct elevations.
I used Exacto knives and straight edge razor blades to carefully
fit sections of the foam to the roadbed, and then started cutting
until I had the shape I wanted.

My track is handlaid code 40 on PC board ties. The turnouts were handlaid
using plans from the Nn3 data book.  The ties were glued down on the centerline
using ACC (superglue).  I soldered the rails to the PC ties, then stripwood was
cut to length and glued underneath the rails.
After everything was in, the wood was stained, and the PC ties painted to match.
The tunnel portals and cribbing were cut from scribed wood siding,
and scale lumber was used for the supports.  Everything was stained Teak,
and then glued in place, often long before the mountain.

My techniques for creating mountains may be a bit unorthodox,
but I like the effect.  No plaster was used in creating the mountains.
I just glued pieces of insulating foam down using carpenters
wood glue, then carved them to shape.  To cover the small gaps
between the one piece of foam and the next, or the foam and the
hardboard, I just used pieces of masking tape.  When I had the shape
I wanted, I just painted over it all, using just two colors: Sandstone
and Dunes Beige, both acrylic paints made by Delta Ceramcoat.
I laid the paint on thick, and while it was still wet, I sprinkled on various
shades of Woodland Scenics ground foam.

If you have questions about anything I have covered here, feel that I have blatently
left something out, or just want to know more, feel free to contact me.

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