Looks good Al. Sorry about the RA issues.

I see your helper is ready to go to work too


Al, I'm sorry about your RA as well!  Yours must be much worser than mine.  I'm sure I wouldn't be able to handle hand tools all day like I did before I moved to the desk job back in 2008.  Wow, has it been that long?  I was 52 then.

The bridges look great!  I'm sorry you are in the possible move mode.  I know what that is like!

I think the helper is actually the supervisor, Bob!  

 Here is an update on SCENERY! Lol

 Seems like some time has passed before I decided to get going on it

  I added two colours of base coat paint. One for Mountains(silver bullet grey) and the earth tone I purchased from the mistake bin

 I found a bunch of trees I had in boxes from after Christmas sales from years past and placed them on the layout

  I am still going to apply sand, fine gravel and other detail items in the future

Here are some pics

Happy Railroading!



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WOW!!!  That's some very dramatic scenery.

Suggestion:  Please edit the thread's title to include the date when you add photos, etc.  Makes it much easier to follow your progress.


 Here is a quick update

  I have decided to kitbash a Lionel Rico station kit by lowering the main floor walls by 2’ scale feet and shorten the freight shed part of the structure. Also, you will notice I shorted the height of the freight shed walls.

  This will be placed at the entrance of the Pass tunnel

  I have done some building placement in the area of the main station. I added a Lionel Esso gas station, MTH row house, MTH 2 storey house and a Plasticville log house in the scene.

  I wanted to give the impression of a remote division point hamlet serving mainly railway employees and families 

  The road still needs to be built, most likely gravel

  Here are some pics

Happy Railroading!3D3E9AC7-4293-414B-92AA-BE1C13EE0677




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Last edited by albertstrains

 Here is where this modified Rico station project is at now.

  I finished modifying windows /pass doors and have painted all doors green. More little details to finish on it but for the most part is done . I will be scratch building a wooden platform for the station to be mounted on and installing interior lighting

  Hopefully tomorrow I will get back to running some trains and more scenery

 Here are some pics




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Last edited by albertstrains

  I have done a little more scenery with my buckets of rocks I recently purchased for under $10 at our local landscaping supplier.

   I filled 4 pails:

 1 with sand

 1 with pea gravel

 1 with 8 mm limestone

 1 with 10 mm limestone 

   Applying the standard technique of spraying soapy water first to wet the material first before applying a mixture of 50/50 white glue and water.

    I decided on using sand at this time for the gravel road which begins at the grade crossing and goes to the station of Rock Creek.

  Here are a few pics showing some progress

Remember to have FUN

and run your Trains!




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8CADAD6A-4B2F-4A79-8B43-8D9A7A01F015Thanks Mark

 Amazing what alittle paint and different grades and types of rocks make.

  I really like working with foam board as it is easy to make changes without much hassle.

  I will be adding more detailing like grass foliage etc but that costs some big $$$ especially if your going with Woodlands Scenic for the majority of your layout scenery products.

  Of course, I still need a thousand more trees!



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Thank you Scott, I’m glad your getting some good ideas because I try not to post about my bad ones lol

  I have been working lately on installing Kadees on my new set of Lionel 21” Canadian passenger cars, so I have stopped work at this time on the scenery. 
   I am pretty happy the way it’s going so far with what I have to work with.

  On a personal note, I will not be required to return to work and I have had my disability benefits extended until I am 65, which is quite a relief.  That means I can carry on working on the layout, when I’m able.


Al, I am sorry you are on disability, but glad your benefits have been extended until 65.  I took an early retirement offer that was just to cut employee numbers.  Then worked in a contract mode a while, then collected unemployment and worked part time until knee surgery in November.  I'm taking Social Security a couple years earlier than I had planned, but all is well.  I hope to have more time for my layout too!

I'm enjoying the photographic progress, Al - you're doing a great job! Been doing some foam-sawing myself, but nothing photo-worthy yet.😬

4EF5776A-6A7A-42C2-B9EB-2ED1DD24ED2162382C6C-BF9D-4E11-B212-27214AEAEDF105024555-9659-4ED4-A09C-E01B043FBC73F69A33EC-431E-45E5-B43E-9373AA921E633E520C44-4940-496F-AA9B-7D8409B6BB60D9A802F0-1A23-4E3B-B485-FA63E652895B Awesome Firewood! Keep at it, it’s worth the effort to give it a shot. I can tend to overthink things, instead of just doing it lol

   Well since the arrival of the Lionel 21” Canadian cars, I have added Kadee  couplers to all cars and found out quickly where the trouble spots exist on the existing track alignment.

   I found out that 21” cars with Kadee couplers derail on a reverse curve with only a 10” straight between them, so I am rethinking how to increase the length of track between them using only 072(which is my minimum).

  So far so good. I have had to modify and make some custom Fastrack pieces but that’s what makes this a challenge lol

  Here are some pics of the layout from the Mountain top perspective

 Enjoy your Trains!


Last edited by albertstrains

Sorry about that one Folks! I had not gone to bed yet when I posted. It was one of those nights working on the layout instead of tossing and turning in bed lol



That's quite alright, Al!  All of us who have posted very much have goofed up at least once.  I have goofed up many posts!  

 I haven’t done much lately besides installing kadees on my new Lionel 21” cars and test running them on the layout.

  I had a few locations where re-alignment was required to avoid derailing on reverse curves.

  The only problem is the FP7s cannot pull 4 cars up the grades. They are heavier than the 18” heavyweights of course..but.

  So this brings me to the most fun I’ve had in a long time was finally double heading 2 Steam locomotives around all the grades.

  Both Hudson’s have Kadees installed so I programmed a “lash up” on my MTH handheld and you can see the results on the vids posted.

  Also a vid of the FP7s on the top loop. I guess I will need a powered B unit to do the job.

  Enjoy the Hobby and each Day!

Remember to have some FUN!



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While those are beautiful FP7s I'll take the Royal Hudsons any day they look spectacular pulling that train.

Years ago rode behind one in tourist service out of Vancouver and I've admired them since.

Just started looking at your build thread (it was the "double-headed..." that cauaght my eye. Very impressive work although for the complete look I think you'll need more than another 1000 trees.

Al, The double headed Hudsons are great!  Beautiful paint scheme.  It looks like you have a third one sitting on the track on the lower level. They look just right running through your mountainous northern scenery!  

   Good Morning All

  I had a lot of fun running this particular train around the layout. I really enjoyed the sights and sounds of the Doubleheader working up and down the grades.

  RSJB18, good eye seeing the 2860 was not working hard. It is on its way back to the shops in Ogden to have work done to its smoke unit fan motor, as it stopped puffing recently. 
  Scotie, I never had a chance to ride behind the 2860 when it was in steam. I wish had but did see it come thru Calgary back in 1978. Trees? Oh yeah, I need a bunch more lol.   Mark, glad you noticed the other locomotive. While similar looking to the Hudson’s it is really a 2-10-4(Selkirk as CPR types call them).

  Paul, I’m not sure where the support crew were lol. Perhaps it was too noisy with all the stack talk happening!

Keep the Trains Rollin!




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48227BCF-A5B0-4992-A85A-DD86C04385720D57AD02-1E8B-4C39-8432-BF582D963E977B136F91-B15D-450A-809F-E276F1895183802DB8AF-1981-4508-908B-CE12EEDCA1E1 I have managed to get some things done that were nagging at me( not the Wife lol)

 The little project that made a big difference was adding another 120v light box location in front of the layout, that illuminates the Roundhouse and Tunnel portals locations

  I also filled most of the cracks and things with a can of spray foam. After curing I trimmed and painted patches locations with drab green paint.

  Here are a few pics showing my mess. Next will be adding the gravel roadway to the Station and detailing abit around the coaling tower

Hope You an Your Loved ones are safe and healthy during this time



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Al, Looks great!!  I sure like the mountain and the CN locomotives!!  I think I said the same a few days ago.  I guess I must mean it!  

I like the stool right under the access opening!

Here are a couple of other vids taken recently on the Layout just for the pure enjoyment of running some trains! Hope you enjoy

 A little update.....  My oldest Son has come home from Orlando last week, after working at Disney World the past year.

 With the current health protocols regarding quarantining a family member in the same house is rather daunting. 
  My wife is staying at my Daughters apartment for two weeks due to health issues and I am looking after the home front.

  All Good so far

  Still managing to get at things but at a little slower pace....lol

  Be Safe and look after Yourself and Loved ones!



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It's all looking good Al; great to see it coming together.
Can't wait to get some run time with my stuff

Al, Great videos of the trains on your layout.  

I decided to use foam for my grades also.  I used cookie cutter in the past, but am just not up for it now.  I don't have a table saw so I bought Woodland scenics since I only have two grades of about 10 feet in length each.

 I have been running a few trains and painting a K line 2 storey country house that will become a small Hotel, located across from the Station.

   CPR Brad - I hope you have been able to start building your layout. You will have to come by again and bring some trains to run, once things settle down

 Mark- Glad to see you moving forward on your layout with the grade work! I realize a table saw can be handy if you have one but the Woodlands Scenic grades will work perfect. Looking forward to seeing WM coal trains running on them.

RSJB18 - the cats are used to the noise and disruption during operating sessions lol

  I am hoping to continue with some more wiring, scenery, Kadee coupler conversions and painting a set of 18” Heavyweights in CNR green/black/yellow scheme of the mid 1950s.

  These will match the MTH 6060 that I have already completed.

  I will also need to Inquire about replacement traction tires for 63” 75” drivers and the FP7s from Scott Mann at 3rd Rail. 

Happy Railroading!



 Mark- Glad to see you moving forward on your layout with the grade work! I realize a table saw can be handy if you have one but the Woodlands Scenic grades will work perfect. Looking forward to seeing WM coal trains running on them.



Al, I should be getting some photographs up this week to show progress on the layout and one of the two grades has already been glued in place.  I plan to at least get track and basic wiring in on a section at a time, so I hope to be able to try out a coal train soon.

Al, you did a nice job on the FP unit with the ice breakers on the roof. Throwing in a picture of my cat.                                                IMG_6274


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8964E253-FD2E-4A51-8552-9396D937572D   Looking forward to the updates Mark! Can’t wait to see you running trains. 
Paul that’s quite the Mouser you have there. Do you have only one to patrol the layout? Lol

  Here is a pic of the structure in question. Still a work in progress



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