Gosh it seems like an age ago that I did any serious time on the layout, and indeed
it was, but we're back into gear now, and after a few hours cleaning tracks, clearing mouse droppings etc, the locos
were up and running again.
Something had shifted though,
as clearances trackside to locomotive in places seemed uncomfortably close, maybe those pesky mice had been pushing my rail
around. Most of it is not fixed as the Roco track I'm using sits really firmly on it's rubber base, but it's obvious that
I need to do some fixing soon. Time though, as the page title suggests, to address the thorny, or not so thorny ,question
Now you'll remember, (if you can remember back that far), that this layout is based
(very loosely) on the BLS Swiss Mountain line, and the trees in the area are primarily fir and spruce, with a smattering of
broad leaf thrown in for good measure. I've been collecting packs of trees from all the major manufacturers for a good few
years now and have amassed about 300 of various sizes.
Quite a good handful are now on the layout, set on areas of light grass scatter which I admit looks a little
patchy, but there's a long way to go yet.. don't panic!
The chicken wire, plaster and bandage construction is actually quite tough to mount the trees in, requiring a small
drill hole (which quickly became a small screwdriver hole!) and I found a dab of transparent hot melt glue and a steady
finger worked quite well, and as yet none have fallen.
After a while you get to a point where you think NO MORE TREES..PLEASE.. well for
now at least!! So time to think about something else, some PEOPLE, and the main station platform seems like the obvious
place to start. Some ballasting around the platforms was also required as we're getting into finer detail with these titchy
folk, (what it must be like working in N gauge!)
A typical collection on the platform, stressed Dads wth babes in arms, well dressed ladies looking lost, kissing couples
and families wondering where the train is (oh sorry this is Switzerland isn't it!)
|Click for a more readable size!
Now we're concentrating down at the station, and having had some rolls of very
expensive Noch roadway, and a very expensive set of Swiss road painting signage, since we were in Switzerland in Summer
2009, I've started preparing the base for their application. Starting with a layer of cereal box card (brilliant stuff)
and some base green paint to cover any imperfections (of which there are quite a few). I have decided on a simple road layout
(remembering the price of the excellent Noch roads!). Car parking will feature at the station of course, as will a bus turn
around. Here's the rough scribbled idea. I fancy doing the alpine road, hairpins and all, which will require a little sorting
of exisiting landscapes and gradients, but that's what modellings all about.. isn't it? Time to address the bit I've
not been looking forward to, the backdrop to the layout, and Russ has some surprises for me!