Sunday, 22 November 2015

It's Been A Quiet Day In Lake Wobegon...

Straight off the bat I'll say that posts may be sporadic for a while as I focus on work ahead of Christmas (I want to be able to clear my workload for December by the 12th and then I have nearly a month of holiday at my fingertips - muwhahahahahahahahahaha) and to also try and get on top of health issues including this arm and shoulder thing, which it appears is caused by a prolapsed disc about 5 down from my cranium, giving the nerves a hard time.

Consequently, going against medical advice I am working my usual 8 hour days and so the thought of typing afterwards is not pleasant.

The Renaissance plan has been shelved for a while as I move on to plan and execute the commissioning of a third model railroad set in North America in the late 80s again. I am split between either a Florida themed layout or perhaps Canada. A long, mainly single tracked roadbed with spurs to assorted small industries and a staging yard, representing the 'rest of the world'.

The brief to my constructor of choice is that it needs to be 12-13 feet by 9 inches with a mere 4 inch backdrop. A tight brief, but he's good... VERY good, and I am sure he'll do wonders with it.

Yesterday saw £450 vanish all over the world to various model railroad suppliers to add more stock to my forthcoming U.S layout.

As it's set in the late 80s, I went for a classic Amtrak 10 car rake pulled by 3 F40PH locos. All are in the Phase III livery which is the classic silver cars with red, white and blue bands along the bodies. 

I went for the Superliner type of cars, those gloriously large, double level cars you see in many movies (think Silver Streak with Gene Wilder) because if you are going to pay £30 for a single N scale car you have to max out the bling for your bucks.

As it happened I was able to get KATO branded stuff at a very good price and so the 3 locos and 10 cars cost me a very fair £320. However I still have to fork out another £150 to get the three locos converted to DCC control.

I rounded out my purchasing with a set of 15 Athearn brand Bethgon coal porters to go behind the two Norfolk Souther C30-7 locos, already on my desk.

I have now placed myself under a restriction which will see me not spending anything until December 27th, when I have a nice order for 3-5 more locos and 20 or so box cars from the U.S as I try to build a Canadian National and Grand Trunk, fleet. I will be having the DCC decoders for those, fitted prior to shipping. Then it's head down and saving for Vapnartak and the York Model Railway Show in 2016, although, if I spend more than £100 on wargaming next year it will be a miracle.

Speaking of wargaming my old club has had a change of Chairman with the loss of the statesman-like and patrician Tim Gow and the installation of a new fellah the other week with all the same people remaining in their seats. Tim was in my opinion the greatest force for change in the history of the club and it's a loss to SWS I feel. Well played Tim!

The Renaissance plans will probably reshape into a 14th century Italian army when Perrys get their second box of 100YW plastics out into the market place. I am in no rush...

Right, I am off to read Derbyshire Life in a hot bath, and then perhaps watch a documentary on modern day railroad hoboes in Canada.


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