Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Finished Model Power's "Moving In" Kit

Here's the second Model Power house kit I ordered. This one required a bit more paint than the last one. I went with Floquil "Antique White" on the walls and "Roof Brown" for the roof. I left everything else in its stock colors. Once the kit was assemebeled, I hit it with light weather wash and Dulcote.

So that's two down, five more to go!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Finished Model Power's "The Grabitski's"

This is the first of several Model Power house kits I intend to use for the Gallitzin area of the layout. MP made several generic house kits that are very evocative of Gallitzin. I wasn't quite ready for them yet but Model Power going out of business forced me to buy them right away rather than risk paying four times as much on eBay later.

All in all this was a pretty easy kit to put together. I painted the roof Floquil "Grimey Black," the shutters Floquil "Coach Green" and the foundation and steps Floquil "Concrete." Everything else was left in its stock colors.

After assembly, I put on a coat of light weather wash and sprayed it with Dulcote. Other than a bit of glue shmootz here and there, I think the kit turned out pretty good.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Curtain Comes Down on the CFRR

Well, it's all over. The CFRR is no more. Ever since February, when I got this layout operational, the CFRR has been sitting dormant, taking up space and gathering dust. Over this weekend I took on the difficult task of dismantling the layout. Most of the buildings, trees and even rock castings will be reused on the PRR.

I must say tearing down the CFRR was quite a cathartic experiance. I spent nearly five year building running and tinkering with it. To suddenly turn and start tearing it apart kind of felt like murdering my best friend. Okay, maybe I'm being a bit dramatic here but you get the point.
On the plus side, managed to salvage the flour mill and lake scenes. So anyway, that's it for the CFRR.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

R.I.P Model Power

Today, when I popped onto the Model Railroader forum, I was unpleasantly surprised to find out that Model Power has gone out of business. The following message was posted on MP's web site, www.modelpower.com:

Dear Model Power Customers,

After nearly 50 years serving the hobby industry, our 3rd generation family business will closing effective immediately.

In 2007, our banks began an aggressive deleveraging process. They no longer approved of a profitable and paying client such as ours, which had been reliant on inventory. This is why one of the industry's most extensive lines, had begun to see much of its products unavailable on the market. Now it will no longer be seen at all.

During these past 7 years, we had made changes to the business in order to accommodate and adjust to the changing nature of the business relationship with our lenders. We had offered multiple solutions to our lenders in order to "fix" our situation, all were rejected, came with different restrictions, or offered to little too late. In all our efforts, no arrangements by our lenders would allow for Model Power to arrive at a position in which we could get back to fill our customer needs.

We would like to take the time to thank all of those whom we have worked with the past 50 years. To our customers and competitors within the industry, we thank you.

The Model Power Family

Not only am I sad to see Model Power run out of business, but it also throws a huge monkey wrench into my layout plans. I was planning on using a number of their reasonably-priced house kits for the Gallitizin area of the layout. However, I wasn;t planning on buying them until for quite some time. But now I have to use the money I'd set aside for finishing the engine yard to buy the house kits before they sell out.

Monday, April 21, 2014

More Progress at the Shop Complex

Over the past few days, I've gotten a bit more track laid in the Altoona shop complex. There's not a whole lot else to report on. With the weather getting nicer, I've been spending more time outside. As such, work on the PRR has slowed to snails pace.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

More Work on the Shop Complex

After putting it off for a while, I finally did some meaningfull work on the engine yard. After assembling the roundhouse and coaling tower, I built Cornerstone's "Ash pit and Hoist" kit. And ordered a cheap Atlas turn table.

The problem arose when I discovered the curvature of the turn table is much tighter than the curvature of the round house. This is going to require some complex track work. After some foot dragging I finally stared laying some track and roadbed.

I plan on adding a backshop and sad I g tower to the area as well.