While I'm not exactly as far along as I would have liked by now, I'm still enjoying working on the layout. I've been busy lately with making track plan changes and starting to lay some track and cork down. Now I just need to get out and buy enough track and turnouts to complete the mainline loop. That is my primary goal right now. Once I'm at that point, I can at least have some trains running again and then decided what to do next from there.
One thing I'd like to show here is what I am doing with the cork to differentiate between the main line and the sidings/yard area. Rather than using standard HO scale cork for everything, I've decided to go with N scale cork for the sidings/spurs and in the yard areas. This should give me a bit more of a prototypical look with the main line sitting just a bit higher than everything else.
After I bought a few pieces of cork to get started, I realized that to make a 3 foot long section in N scale thickness, I can just take a third strip of N scale cork and put them all together. This turned out to be almost exactly the same width as the regular HO size, so I think I will go with this, at least for the lower sections of track that aren't grouped close together. For those areas, primarily the yard, I will probably have to go with sheet cork.
Here is a look at how the three pieces of standard N scale cork line up with HO scale.
|Comparison of three pieces of N scale cork and two pieces of HO scale cork.|
I've also been working on some other small projects, one of which is figuring out what to do for the roads I need on my layout. I want something that looks good, but can be made from readily available materials. That led me to doing a quick YouTube search and I came across a great video from Gknos modeltrains. This video shows how roads can be made from simple foamcore poster board. I've been trying it out and have to say I like the results so far.
|Messing around with some foamcore poster board to create roads and sidewalks.|
For the main road section in the center, it is just a 3" wide strip of foamcore board with the paper removed from both sides and painted with some grey acrylic paint. The sidewalks are the same, only they are sitting up on a piece of thin foam sheet. This did a nice job of simulating the sidewalk being at curb height. The seams in the sidewalk were done by cutting slightly into the top surface with my xacto knife. Now it just needs some striping and weathering.