June 4th, 2008.

Up till now, I had lost my gusto with the railroad room. I was more content sitting at the workbench detailing locomotives and playing on the internet. Well, I finally got into the swing of things, and within a week, I got alot more done to the layout. First on the list was getting the Tonopah branch line staging tracks glued down and wired up. With that done, I put in some temporary track to connect the branch line with the main line and can now run trains in and out of Tonopah. I will go back later and lay the turnouts needed at Laws, but for now, its great to see a train coming off the branch line while another runs by on the main.
After that was finished, I finally got the initiative to install all the lower level lights. This was a big, time consuming project that I was putting off. There was alot of wood cutting and fixture end fitting to do, installing ballasts and running alot of wire. Now I wish I had done it before any track was put down. Quite a few times one side of the fluorescent bulb dropped and landed on the track. There is one area that I'll have to redo since it bent the rails. But I will say this: boy did it make a huge difference! Along with all this, I added some temporary facia to the yard area, painted in the final "olive green" color, and put together a temporary control pannel. I wanted something to stand out, and I remembered that David Haines did something like this on his Raton Pass layout, using plexiglass with stripes. I wasted 2 pieces of plexiglass before this one turned out how I wanted it. So this "temporary" might turn into "permanent".
Even with all this going on, I still managed to detail 2 more locomotives, a SF SD40-2, and an Oakway Leasing SD60. They will be on the loco details page soon. Speaking of that, I had to redo my list of loco types to include SD50's, SD60's and SD60M's. I was just going to stick with SP and SF locos, but since I'll have some foreign road power on the layout, might as well include them in the details page.
Anyhow, on with some pictures!



Here is the turnout for the 2 staging tracks that represent Tonopah. Atlas #5.



Gluing the homasote down under the helix



Here are the 2 staging tracks completed. The track in the background (above the green switch machine) is the main line going into the laundry room to staging. This area will eventually be covered up by the town of Mammoth, 7" above the track, as the hardboard backdrop shows.



The staging tracks will be able to hold 2-3 locos and 25-28 cars. This train is 3 locos and 25 cars.



Close up of the Tortoise switch machine and the bracing I had to put together to hold it.



Temporary facia painted in an olive green, which will match both the desert and mountain scenery.



Looking back toward the peninsula. You can also see the temporary control pannel.



Close up of the temp. control pannel. Eventually, it will have the town name and switch numbers.


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