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Hey Guys and Gals,

Over the last two years I have seen and learned some wonderful things on this site. Unfortunately when I started my layout almost ten years ago, I did not know of this site. It would have been helpful, motivating, and inspiring if I did.

With all that being said, I have decided to start a post of the progress of my layout from this point forward. I have posted several progress submissions over the years but would like to put them in one thread as well.  When necessary or asked I will also post some "before and after" pics to give everyone an idea and conceptual insight to what I have been doing over the years.

Because of many personal obstacles, it has taken me all of these years to get to this point in the layout, where I am wiring signals and just starting scenery work. They say patience is a virtue and as anxious as I have been to get things accomplished life took over and slowed me down for a period. I know the next journey on the layout construction will be more interesting because of this forum.

The first post, in this thread, will be the hillside I am creating before installing the coal tipple over the yard.

Thanks and all suggestions and comments welcome.



Images (3)
  • Tipple Hillside #1: Will have to add another layer of foam on the back section and two more on the front section. Once that's done I can begin making a mess!
  • Tipple Hillside #2
  • Tipple Hillside #3
Last edited by luvindemtrains
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Hi Everyone,

The dimensions of the layout are approximately 25' X 15'. It is an around the room plan which currently features a 6-track yard. The layout has a two track mainline (lower level) and a single loop branch line(upper level). I use Atlas 3 rail track. The layout is not based on any particular area and is freelance. I would venture to say, because of my preferences, the era of the layout would be from the transition era to the present. I know, how do you model that? Big gap, I know, but I like the new and old. 

I mostly use diesel power but have started to become more fond of steam power. 

Here are some random pics of the layout. I also have a couple of videos on Youtube under luvindemtrains.

I also have included the print out of the track plan but there have been a few modifications made to that. Most notably in the upper level (branch line). The three track spur section, to the right, has been re-installed on the lower level. I could not justify keeping it on the upper level. Currently this area is where I have an engine servicing facility but plan to cut through the wall and continue the layout in the adjacent room. When that project begins I will post it step by step. 




Images (14)
  • Original Layout Design: Basic Track Plan
  • 193: Fascia Installed but not stained.
  • 196: Fascia Installed and stained.
  • 002: Pre-painted gorge area.
  • 007: Another view of unpainted gorge area.
  • 024: This is after the new bridge was installed and before any backdrops were installed and before I painted the benchwork.
  • 043: another view of bridge area.
  • After Paint and New Bridge: Bridge and steel mill backdrop.
  • Canyon #1: Semi-finished gorge area. Several details including finishing the river have to be done.
  • Canyon #2: Another view of the gorge and its forced perspective.
  • Backdrop Installed #1 (right side): My first try at backdrop installation. My vaulted walls made this project interesting. Thanks for all of the suggestions I received.
  • Painted Benchwork #1: Left side of layout after benchwork was painted. The town will be located here.
  • After Paint and New Bridge #2: To the right is the section that leads to the engine servicing facility and that will eventually go into the next room.  You can see a section of the steel mill backdrop behind the bridge.
  • Painted Benchwork #2: This is another section of the left side of the layout.
Last edited by luvindemtrains

Good Evening Everyone,

Today I had a burst of energy, after work, and decided to do some more work on the hillside for the coal tipple. First are a couple of pics with me laying out some retaining walls and also the piers I had to install to get clearance for the engines, hoppers, and other rolling stock I will run under the coal tipple.  Next, there are a few pics with the coal tipple in place before carving.

The last few pics will show new stacked foam, in the rear, that covers the entire corner. I got an idea, while at work, and this was what I needed to do in an attempt to execute the idea. The last few pics show both hillsides carved and the front hillside partially painted. I'm feeling pretty good about this and am trying to be as methodical as I can be.

I did fill in the gaps and paint the rear hillside but did not put it in place because the paint needs to dry overnight, before I put it on the layout. Tomorrow I hope to have the same energy and do more work on this scene. I will show more progress in the next day or so.

Comments and suggestions are always welcome.




Images (8)
  • Hillside Uncut with Retaing Walls #1
  • Hillside Uncut with Coal Tipple #1 Rotated
  • Hillside Uncut with Coal Tipple #2 (close up) Rotated
  • Foam Uncut #1
  • Foam Uncut #2 (closer)
  • Foam Cut #1
  • Foam Cut #2
  • Foam Cut #3
Last edited by luvindemtrains

Good Afternoon Guys and Gals,

I have been working to get as much done around the Coal Tipple as I can this weekend.  Here are some progress pictures. Not quite finished yet but got a lot done.

Once I get to certain point with a scene, I move on and come back to it. This allows me to come upHillside for Coal Tipple #1[April 2018)Hillside for Coal Tipple #2[April 2018)Hillside for Coal Tipple #3[April 2018)Hillside for Coal Tipple #4[April 2018) AdjustedCoal Tipple Progress #1[April 2018)Coal Tipple Progress #2[April 2018)Coal Tipple Progress #3[April 2018)Coal Tipple Progress #4[April 2018)

with ideas for more detail.

I am going to start the town scene this evening and will keep everyone posted every step of the way.

Comments and Suggestions welcome.



Images (8)
  • Hillside for Coal Tipple #1(April 2018)
  • Hillside for Coal Tipple #2(April 2018)
  • Hillside for Coal Tipple #3(April 2018)
  • Coal Tipple Progress  #2(April 2018)
  • Coal Tipple Progress  #3(April 2018)
  • Coal Tipple Progress  #4(April 2018)
  • Coal Tipple Progress  #5(April 2018)
  • Coal Tipple Progress  #6(April 2018)
Last edited by luvindemtrains

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