Sunday, March 29, 2015

Lighted Vehicles

Well, I have noticed that in N scale, it is a rarity to see lighted vehicles in night scenes, hence naturally that was in my list of to-dos from the very beginning. And I am glad to say, 4 years on, I finally achieved it!

Vehicles are not new to those who are following the progress - very humble Kato's Toyota Automobile set (, and one of the woodland scenics Bad Boy bikers ( And as for equipment - Model Expo drill set ( and Circuitron 0.04" optic fiber. Plus I used locally available cheap and thin optic fibers (0.5mm dia) for the bike.

I think the trickiest one was the bike. Those who owned an N scale bike knows that it IS tiny! Moreover, the cheap and fragile local optic fiber kept on breaking or bending resulting in reduced luminosity or no light at all. I actually had ruined the headlight of one of the bikes in the process, the poor tiny 'bad boy' now needs to keep his bike permanently facing the backdrop. The second attempt came out to be satisfactory after a few tweaks.

The cars were pretty easy - just drill a 0.04" hole so that the optic fibers are snug fit to the hole and then bend them through the car's contour. One difficulty was that the Circuitron optic fiber was pretty strong with a lot of elasticity, so straightening it or bending it was a challenge and it would push the light plastic car out of it's place. little fiddly, but nothing that a good model cement cannot handle!

So without further introduction - here are the photos:

I will have to put a couple more lighted cars in the far right corner of the approach (where the cafe is, and a couple of vehicles in the the main port - that will make the night scenes complete.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The town... is served!

Finally! The town scene in the layout and the approach to the port is now complete. The only addition will be a few lighted cars, and some more figures. Time to shift focus to the boat yard so that I can leave that corner alone!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Last bit of track modeled in concrete

All right - guess this is definitely a milestone! Given that I'm building a layout where the tracks are meant to be modeled in concrete, having to finish the last bit of such modeling certainly is a good feeling - a feeling like seeing light at the end of the tunnel! I might be able to complete this project after all. :P

anyway - here is the completed town scene with the last bit of track modeled to be molded in concrete. A little larger area than your typical level crossing as this is still the extension on the port - a small street running sort. All that it needs now is some final detailing, some figure, a few lighted cars - then the town scene is complete. Oh! yes, I almost forgot - the boat yard in the foreground.

The layout certainly looks like it's near to the finish line. Once the town scene is done, the only three remaining sections will be the coal transfer facility, the conveyor belt for the grain elevator and the oil storage facility. I think then I can call this done!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Jack.. is back! :P

Finally some progress! Started working on the layout after the longest gap in 4 years - nearly 6 months! Aim is to complete the background scenery and the town scene first. More to come!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Our 2nd Article in N Scale Mag

So we have part 1 of our 2nd article published in N Scale Mag, detailing the process of building the N Scale container crane. Part 2 is releasing on May-June edition.

In the mean time, modeling time is down to all time low for last about 6 months - the last serious effort was the weathering project in September. I am desperately hoping to get back on track soon - pray for me guys!