#21 Status Report

April 21, 2008

So much has been done to the layout recently that it’s much better to just show you in pictures the progress that’s been made than try to describe it in words.


Bob Mott and his son Bob Junior have been working to prepare the opening scene on the layout, the first that visitors will see after they enter (Figures 1 and 2).  This is a company town now called Mott Junction in their honor.  Bob Junior and his model railroading colleagues in Baltimore have constructed the buildings that will be installed there, while Bob Senior has built the high bridge that will cross above this area.  As you read this the installations should have been complete.


Figure 1.  The Motts at Work on Mott Junction


Figure 2.  Explaining the Mott Junction Work to Onlookers


Meanwhile the Early Period live water river and lake have been coated with fiberglass.  The view from the Mezzanine in Figure 3 shows the river in the left foreground.  On the upper right, is the layout exit and just to the left of it the modern yard and intermodal facility where track has just recently been installed.


Figure 3.  View from the Mezzanine


Just beyond where the layout walkway exits the tunnel coming from Mott Junction, the Early Period modelers have constructed an example scene to illustrate the intended quality of the modeling planned for the rest of the layout.  Most of this scene is shown in Figure 4.  A special feature of the scene is a building crushed by a modeled rock slide, shown in Figure 5.


Figure 4.  Early Era Example Scene




Figure 5.  The Victim of a Modeled Rock Slide


A bit farther along and on the other side of the aisle is the lake at the end of the river.  This has gotten both its fiberglass coating and epoxy paint job (Figure 6).  In the distance beyond is the entry to kids play area called “Imagination Junction,” under what looks like a station platform roof.


Figure 6.  The Middle Era Lake


Work on the Middle Era city has progressed well.  Track for the trolley line has been installed (Figure 7), and buildings are under construction, most of them in the shop area.


Figure 7.  The Modern City Background Support Structure

The Middle Era Engine Servicing Facility has its tracks installed and mountains covered with the fiberglass and poultry wire, ready for foaming.  The mountainside tracks have been covered with paper to protect them from the foam.


Figure 8.  The Middle Era Engine Servicing Facility


In the Modern City, we’ve made reasonable progress building the structures to support the buildings’ facades (Figure 9).  Some portions of the facades will be attached using a “four-bar” linkage which will enable them to be moved up and out of the way to allow workers to access streets outside the buildings.  The near “wall” of the structure on the right has the façade framework with the linkage installed.


Figure 9.  The Modern City Building Support Structures


We’re getting to the exciting part of the construction, where major changes are happening very fast.  As always, there remain lots of things that need to be done to make the layout presentable for the June opening.  And, even after that much work will continue to be needed to add those additional features and details which will make it ever better and give customers reasons to visit again and again.


Join us and help create this spectacular work of art.


© 2008 Tom Bartsch

MVGRS Big Train Project Coordinator