Well, we took a break from train during the Holidays and now we are back on track.
Scenery work started at Villeneuve where we dug ditches into the fiberboard. The board thickness is quite similar to the real-life ditches found there - about 5 to 6 feet deep.
The ditches where irregularly shaped as topography in Villeneuve is quite irregular near the track.
Universal mud (latex paint and papier-mâché) was used to shape the ground. This is truly a fantastic medium to work with and it makes landforming so much easier. It already looks good with the brown color.
From an operation point of view, there's still a few wiring issues. No scenery work on track will be done until these are addressed. The guys went the easy road when placing feeder. I almost never do wiring so I rarely take a serious look at what's going on under the benchwork. However, how it's hard to make people understand feeders are important. I feel like the train toy syndrome is at work: put to wires and merry go around!
By the way, I seriously came to the conclusion our benchwork is as crappy as can be. Hours spent in making it slightly better didn't pay off that much. If we ever have to remodel a scene, count on me to scrap all that unreliable stuff. Now, I understand why 3/4" plywood and good framing is the way to go... Live and learn... I just don't have the motivation to tore down what was built over the last year and feel other members would just kill me on the spot if I ever made the mistake to utter all this nonsense in front of them...
On the sad side, we started to get running problem with GMD1 1906. We will have to investigate that as soon as possible. Fortunately, GMD1 1027 is running fine.
Happy New Year 2014!