It's been a Looooong time since I posted, but I've been working on the layout, unfortunately at a snails pace. I wanted to post some pictures of the foam mountains I am attempting to create and share some of the methods I have used so far. They are not complete, but my goal is to have them painted by Thanksgiving (Family comes over then).
The first set of mountains I constructed were built using wooden bases, cardboard, brown rolled paper (Found at any hardware store), and hydrocal (in molds & brushed on). After I got the structure to my liking then I used dyes to add color to the mountain. When that phase was completed I used Scenic Cement and placed the ground cover and other scenery items on the area. I initially used hot glue for the trees but some have taken a few hits (this will happen with three boys at home) so I need to come up with a new method for those.
Now onto the second set of mountains. I decided to try using foam after seeing the results several people have achieved. I went with 2" foam board, 4 x 8 sheets. I cut the foam with a retractable knife into 4' sections, approx. 6-10" wide, shaped to the desired landscape. I also had to place some pieces vertically due to the curves. I then used liquid nail, low expanding foam, and screws to secure the foam into place. Note: I also purchased (1) 1" 4 x 8 foam sheet for fill areas. Once I got the foam secured I used a hot wire carving/knife tool set that I got on Amazon (This works wonders). Afterwards I used a nail puller/cats paw tool to beat up the foam. This is as far as I've gotten. My plans are to fill some odds & ends areas, shape them, beat up a few sections, then use quilted batting on the sections that are not rock faced. I purchased a power sprayer last year and will use it, along with brushes, to paint the foam and batting a dark brown.
Any comments, questions or suggestions are welcome, I hope this helps anyone looking to start the scenery part of their layout. I know that the pictures others have posted on this forum have greatly aided me and I'm hoping to repay by inspiring someone else.