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AhmadKane

Nippon Bali

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AhmadKane

When lockdown sets I had my parents ride to the next province and escape COVID-19 before it blows up. Luckily we are all alright. I told them to pack up my layout back in Jakarta, and decide to revamp it here. It's been months since I made progress on my layout back in Jakarta due to studies. But with the lockdown, I actually got to many things and many builds. 

 

I don't have a timelapse but this is what I made. A Balinese/Japanese diorama. I was inspired by the Japanese waterfall I saw in Nikko, particularly Chuzenji Lake. I am also attempting to build paddy fields using hard brushes, they would be piled up much like the ricefields you'd see in Indonesia, particularly Bali.

 

The baseboard is made out of multiplex wood and 3 layers of single wall corrugated cardboard I got for free from appliance stores. I painted with a green base and made the scenery. I wanted to begin with the heavy duty objects such as the hills and the mountains first. For the paddy field I had piled a couple of glued Styrofoam together and painted the sides with brown colour. The challenge was to build the paddy texture and I used hard paint brushes. I was wondering if I could use long static grass instead, since using hard paint brushes aren't exactly yielding best results...

 

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I had it spun like that because I was making the hills first. The main hill would have two tunnels running through it, and on top, I was inspired by a Japanese manmade waterfall, the one with bricks and look like steps. I am very keen of doing it when I saw a tutorial from makrlinofsweden. I've painted most of the mountain and am currently waiting on some plaster molded into layers of aluminium foil before continuing. The waterfall would then flow unto a river, which I've formed using wet tissue and glue, and would flow to the lake. 

 

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The outer rail would climb to a cliffside, where I wanted to make sort of a hill, or a city bored through the cliff. I am still looking for ideas, but the top is virtually ready, that's why I took the opportunity to try out a static grass applicator built using a mosquito racket. From the cliff it would go down through the bridge and encircling the lake before arriving at the station. I had some points from an old antiques shop, and most of them are either manual turnovers or the machinery has been burnt to crisp. I made a Y turnover combining 3 rail lines, and would need to insulate the setup later. 

 

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In the middle I'm planning to have a city going, but I think I'm going to put it off at the last time, since buildings are so expensive and I wanted to focus on scenery and completing the circuit first. But with the generous amount of toilet paper I've used, I was wondering if there are any suggestions on using used toilet paper rolls for industry? I was thinking that since this layout would feature a shitton of paddy fields, I wanted to make a rice silo, ones that you see in Japan. 

 

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My main problem other than a lack of materials is the outer track, the steep climb had my locomotives crying for mercy and an embankment after a drop had caused a couple of derailments when passing under the waterfall. Most particularly my 100 Series Shinkansen. The turnovers aren't exactly stellar as well, I would need to sort out the electronics too.. 

 

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I am still a beginner and have a lot of things I want to do, and I really appreciate if I could get some feedback and guidance from this community. Is the lake an ok color, should I put varnish? Is the mountain the correct color, etc... I am really open to any feedback on my first layout, and I really want to make it stellar.

 

I hope you could enjoy my layout, Nippon Bali. Thank you.

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cteno4

Nice start Ahmad! Glad you all to to a safe place.

 

grades are always tricky, some trains hate them. Going over 3% can get bad, more like 2% is a comfortable grade that causes a lot less issues but you need more run to get height. Grades not only strain the engines, they also make any bumps in the track work more prone to causing problems as there is more stress in the whole train.
 

search around YouTube as there are lots of videos there about making scenery materials and techniques from everyday stuff. If you want, I can get you access to my cashe of free print out cardstock buildings I’ve downloaded over the years. Mainly cost of printer ink and time. You can get some Quite nice building with some care that are great as holders until you can get better buildings. Also great for just paying around with visual planning or just setting some track up to play with and have some buildings around.

 

cheers

 

jeff

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AhmadKane
5 minutes ago, cteno4 said:

Nice start Ahmad! Glad you all to to a safe place.

 

grades are always tricky, some trains hate them. Going over 3% can get bad, more like 2% is a comfortable grade that causes a lot less issues but you need more run to get height. Grades not only strain the engines, they also make any bumps in the track work more prone to causing problems as there is more stress in the whole train.
 

search around YouTube as there are lots of videos there about making scenery materials and techniques from everyday stuff. If you want, I can get you access to my cashe of free print out cardstock buildings I’ve downloaded over the years. Mainly cost of printer ink and time. You can get some Quite nice building with some care that are great as holders until you can get better buildings. Also great for just paying around with visual planning or just setting some track up to play with and have some buildings around.

 

cheers

 

jeff

 

Yeah, grades is one of my weaknesses. I wanted to use risers from woodland scenic and other manufacturers, unfortunately it's more expensive compared to buying shitton of toiletpaper and wood glue. Grades are just a trial and error process, and I am rather limited due to the amount of tracks I currently have at my disposal to test the grades. 

 

One of the things about the grade is that when it goes down into the tunnel, especially a shinkansen, the train would often derail. I am attempting to solve the situation by putting some folded paper on one side of my 348mm-45 to equalize the force and prevent derailment. I've yet to test it since my power pack seems is in service. 

 

Yeah, youtube has a treasure trove of items and buildings. I really want to try cardstock though, I heard they look fantastic! I would appreciate some cardstock buildings for visuals, maybe something I could put next to the toilet rolls...

 

Thanks for the input Jeff!

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cteno4

Akmad,

 

for risers you can just cut like 4 rectangles of corrugated cardboard at the appropriate lengths and glue together. You can then just glue a base of thin cardboard on to stabilize. It’s enough to test grades out well.

 

is there any dip at a track joint there at the tunnel entrance? It’s on a curve so even more finicky on a grade.

 

jeff

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AhmadKane
4 hours ago, cteno4 said:

Akmad,

 

for risers you can just cut like 4 rectangles of corrugated cardboard at the appropriate lengths and glue together. You can then just glue a base of thin cardboard on to stabilize. It’s enough to test grades out well.

 

is there any dip at a track joint there at the tunnel entrance? It’s on a curve so even more finicky on a grade.

 

jeff

 

I don't think I understand the last one, what do you mean by a dip? If it's a grade going down, then yes, there is a grade entering the tunnel to 0mm, and to a curve

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cteno4

By dip I mean sometimes at track joints the material under the track does not support the joint to keep the two pieces of track flat along the top of the rail. This little dip, especially on a curve at a track joint can cause derailments or decouplings.
 

You also have a similar issue when going from your flat to a grade. Basically the top of the rail has to bend up or down. Many times this transition happens at a track joint and then you end up with a real vertical kink that can cause issues, especially decouplings. The way to solve this is to make a transition track where you use a razor saw to saw slits along the ballast plastic almost all the way thru every like 5mm, then you can carefully bend the track vertically up (for the bottom of the grade) or down (for the top of the grade) vertically so its a long smooth curve up or down to your grade angle.

 

cheers

 

jeff

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AhmadKane
On 5/2/2020 at 9:17 AM, cteno4 said:

By dip I mean sometimes at track joints the material under the track does not support the joint to keep the two pieces of track flat along the top of the rail. This little dip, especially on a curve at a track joint can cause derailments or decouplings.
 

You also have a similar issue when going from your flat to a grade. Basically the top of the rail has to bend up or down. Many times this transition happens at a track joint and then you end up with a real vertical kink that can cause issues, especially decouplings. The way to solve this is to make a transition track where you use a razor saw to saw slits along the ballast plastic almost all the way thru every like 5mm, then you can carefully bend the track vertically up (for the bottom of the grade) or down (for the top of the grade) vertically so its a long smooth curve up or down to your grade angle.

 

cheers

 

jeff

 

You're right! There's a dip between the rails that manage to derail the train... Managed to fix it now by adding a 124 instead of a 49 between curves. The dip is gone.

 

Thanks Jeff, I'm planning to update soon. Could you give me some building designs for me to craft so that I could plan my city? Thanks

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AhmadKane
Posted (edited)

So I've started turfing in the layout and begin to plan where goes where. 

 

Firstoff I've decided to make two prototypes of the rice field. One where I styrofoamed a couple of odd shapes and placed old brushes, the other where I glue in some cardboard along the edges of the paddy and would pour some water effect. I've turfed the sides since I noticed that paddy fields usually have growth on them. I've also tried using some solvent varnish in hopes to get a brownish coloration for the paddy field base to have the reflection. 274721.thumb.jpg.97defe77dc322540c49986dffe4f22f9.jpg

 

I've created the waterfall and with inspiration from Japanese rockcliff waterfalls and stonewall waterfalls. Made known to me by Marklinofsweden, I decided to do the same. I used polysterene where I peeled off the color layer and tried to paint it. The acrylic paint did not stick to the polystyrene and made me realize I either need some oil paint or some plastic diorama paint. Realizing the limitation, after carving up the faces, I used oil pastel to color the rockfaces and wash them with a black wash. I've fixated them to the water body and since the photo have taken to increase the water surface and cover the edges of the waterfall walls with toilet paper. 

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It's been difficult turfing and static grassing. I'm still learning the methods on how to do them. What I'm doing right now is trying cheap 1.5-3mm static grass from a local online store. Using static grass applicator. I mix dark green 70%, light green 20% and dry grass 10%. I've finished them with adding some NOCH blummenweise flower grass. I've also used strictly the NOCH blummenweise for the degradation near the rice field, in the photo above. 

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I have to say thanks to @cteno4 to allow me to use the paper buildings he has in his arsenal, and have been planning the city as I wait for several tracks and scatter materials to arrive hopefully after Wesak on Thursday. I find it challenging since origami and paper folding isn't exactly my forte, especially the small folds you have to do. But I'm managing, I've also taken something out from a merchandise I'm selling. The plastic hospital, which is something I really want to feature being a medical student.. The trouble is, I didn't plan the city, and would have very little room to feature one in my LO. There is space near the railway track, unfortunately I find that I really want to place a roundtable there when I have the cash.

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Last but not least I've taken the liberty of coloring the river seagreen. I realized that most cities hear rivers do not have grades in the water, and so I instead placed a really dark shade of blue and leave the brown areas reflected by the rocky-ground texture. I've also turfed the area surrounding the river heavily with green turfs, and using some foam and printed walls. I made a boundary. The gap in question would be for a bridge between the railyard to the town. 

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That's progress. I'm waiting for more static grass and the rest of my tracks to work with. I've also gotten some Vallejo water effect that I'd use to create the waterfall later. What do you guys think?

 

Edited by AhmadKane
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cteno4

Great progress! LOL I’ve had it on my list the last couple of days to post marklinofsweeden’s water from toilet paper and glue video as I ran across it this weekend and it was nicely done and pretty spot on for simple water. The guys is a character to boot!

 

keep at it! Scenery is one of those things it takes a while before it starts to say its coming together sometimes. Also one of those things I’ve never done every bit of a scene without fixing or changing something from what I started with/did.

 

cheers

 

jeff

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AhmadKane

I would like to show you my SCARM plan of the layout. The tracks labeled red are the ones I have now, and those in blue are the tracks that would soon arrive hopefully tomorrow. There's also some yellow tracks, these are minitrix. Ones I got cheap and in bulk in an old antiques store. Although couldn't be seen, but could be seen in the layout, the outer loop would go on top of a cliff while the middle loop would pass close to the river. The middle loop would then elevate and meet the decreased top loop to a bridge, and go down the same path. The bottom loop is just a normal loop with a siding. 

 

I've been doing such a large scenery that I might not have enough space for a trainyard. The idea before was that if you're gonna spend a shitton of money to buy tracks in the middle of a lockdown (since ordering in from japan isn't an option atm, and I'll save more in customs if I buy locally), I'd rather have the tracks be run by locos. I've also wondered whether I could have an elevated track. In which an elevated loop passing on top of the yard at the bottom part of the plan where it would decrease and meet at the cliffside, AKA the straight of the outer track.

 

Outer track would have 348 degrees, middle would have 315 and inner would have a 282. The S bend of the middle track is tricky, I had to incorporate a mix of 248 and 282s with a 124 straight so that it'll meet with the bridge without chipping more space of the town.

 

 

 

Trackplan.PNG

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AhmadKane

So here's the update. 

 

I decided to plan the city. What I had done was place some masking tape and painting them raw umber mix with gray. It was alright until the masking tape bubbled. After binning the masking tape, I experimented by printing roads. Using Powerpoint, I managed to design what a road in Bali would look like. I printed it in white carton and after cutting it, found the road to be rather excellent. So thanks @cteno4 for your guidance

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The intersection is the difficult part to plan, as the small space I had to build a civilization left me with very little room to expand. I then decided to feature a tunnel that bores through the cliff. I made it using used masking tape rolls, cut about 1/6th of the diameter, and lining the inner wall with used black sanding paper. The difficult part as to portray the tunnel's depth. I had thought of putting roadwork signs to close the tunnel, but I went with printing a picture of a tunnel exit and inserting it unto the masking tape roll. So It's some Looney Tunes inspired tunneling. I've used some gray pastels to draw some driving lines and wear on the road.

 

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I've also planned to use a Tomytec curved station upon exiting the tunnel, and before purchasing, would plan the parking space. The parking space I measured with the N scale cars I got as a bonus on the other layout. I designed a couple of slots as this would be a small station, and would leave a small part later on for a bicycle parking space. There is also a disability spot, both Indonesian and Japanese disability slots (according to the browsing) are just yellow symbols, but I like the American blue disability parking to add some color. Now if you may notice, I've used the pastel to create an extra ring at the roundabout, and would feature cars that occasionally drift around the roundabout. (Insert Tokyo Drift theme song here)

 

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Now I am much aware of the lack of space for a town, and I've decided to expand on the other side of the river. I've left it sparse since I didn't know what to put in there. The idea was to have a rail yard or a turntable. But nevertheless I had to link the two areas.

 

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Using Marklin of Sweden techniques, I took my swiss army knife and cut patterns on polystyrene. I've also noted that acrylic paint does not stick well with polystyrene and instead of using oil paint. I used a mix of oil pastels to color the bridges. The cutting isn't exactly perfection and the hole pattern isn't swell. But It should be enough for now. The problem I currently have is that in order to have a proper gradient, I pasted a road paper between the intersection and the bridge, this left a dip below the connection between the two, and I'm still wrecking my mind on how to solve this. The idea was to put some polysterene under the road to at least give it support before I could say.. Ballast the surrounding of the road. 

 

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But the bridge is stunning, and is a great skyline addition on shots overlooking the waterfall. 

 

OH! Speaking of the waterfall, it was a difficult task. If you note the other thread on using toilet paper and glue to create water bodies by Marklinofsweden, there is further tutorial in making the waterfall. Noch water effect is unavailable for me right now, and I ordered in Vallejo water texture. Needless to say, I was dumb ordering it. It certainly didn''t do what I wanted. 

 

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Nevertheless I tried to make it work. I took some used pillow fibre and spread them over a mayonnaise of Vallejo water texture. I've spread more on top and with a brush I dabbed it and expanded the mass. The result was a thick and foamy white paste, and while it did not give the gloss I wanted, I tested it out. The Vallejo water texture was quick drying white, and supposedly used by spreading it unto waves to create a more detailed finish. The quick dry had binded the fibre together, and I glued them in. I also dabbed some water texture on the beginning and end of the waterfalls to image the crashing while spreading the white glue. 

 

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The process was that I made a streak, and cut the streak to create smaller ones for the other part of the waterfall. The water is too white and it certainly show as if a huge current is going through the water body. This is further expanded by the fact the main waterfall is simply one big mesh of fibre foam. Much like the Niagara falls. Hahaha

 

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I've also replicated the same process on the entry to the lake. I didn't want to go overboard as I did with the main waterfall and instead designed it like a bottleneck. The result is alright, and It does crash to the deeper part of the lake instead of the surrounding banks. 

 

Now I've gotten my rails and have been successfully operating the middle and outer loop of the design. Unfortunately after running it, there was a bit of an issue. For one, the entry to the threeway point is sometimes blocked, and the point seems to have a mind of its own. Moreover, old Minitrix points with Kato Unitrack do not bode as well as I hoped, and I might try to solder these tracks together tomorrow. 

 

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There are some dips and locations in which the engine would die or uncouple from the wagons. I've marked them and I am wondering what to do with these areas. Despite it being a perfect fit, the roughness of using solely tissue paper and the inclines had caused some dips and elevations in parts of the track, which may kill the power. It would be such a chorse ripping the completed tissue. The idea I had was to stuff the inner dips with tissue or cardboard, and try to get away with the problem by elevating and thickening the ballasting. I hoped to get away with it by only ballasting these gaps, but ballasting is like a wedding ring, you're committed and divorcing the track from the ballast is as difficult as winning alimony. So I need to play my cards right. 

 

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Now as for the right side of the layout, I have absolutely no idea what to put there. The Styrofoam pile on the bottom right would be made into paddy fields again. The reason why I color the cardboard baseboard green is so that upon static grassing, the green color from the grass would be more vivid and reflective in shots. But the right part could be anything. One idea was to go simple and make a forest and add more trees to this layout.

 

 

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The other would be to begin like a beachfront, the one like in Lake Biwa, Maibara. It should be simple repainting the cliffside or augmenting it to have a sandy texture, or simply add some steps to the beachfront. Either I make this a beachfront or perhaps a harbour, a pier much like in Lake Chuzenji, Nikko. I am also considering of putting a bigass torii gate in the middle of the lake, or a hindu shrine to replicate like Bratan.

 

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Candi Bratan in Bali is a Hindu landmark and one of the main tourist points in Bali, and is a holy site in their religious festivities. It has a really intricate design and unlike other hindu temples you would find in India, Cambodia, Malaysia or anywhere else. The architecture of Bali is heavily designed like the old Javanese Majapahit Kingdoms. Unfortunately I do not possess the necessary skills to make the design. An option would be to have one made by a friend of mine in Solo, Java. But if you have the papercraft of a Balinese temple, let me know will ya 😜 

 

 

Anyway, I really want to know your opinions of my progress and some suggestions. What do you guys think so far? What could be added to enhance the view? 

 

 

 

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Cat

Certainly looks like a fun project!
 
You could add some puddles along the sides of the roads, and the waterfalls are running strong because there was just a heavy downpour in the rainy season.
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AhmadKane
7 minutes ago, Cat said:

Certainly looks like a fun project!
 
You could add some puddles along the sides of the roads, and the waterfalls are running strong because there was just a heavy downpour in the rainy season.
: 3

 

I always forgot to mention it but I think I'll do now. Love the drawing in your profile picture btw.

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Cat

Thanks, the drawing was done by an artist at Anime Boston 2008 when I was wearing my UNGCC Boston Unit cosplay while running kaiju miniatures games at the convention.

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cteno4

Looking good!

 

glad the printed roads worked for you. It’s pretty fast and easy and you can start with just paper slips you lay down and scribble on for markings and such and use as your drawing plans. The. Do a rough draft and tape down, edit, evolve and then paste down. You can always just add a new layer if you want a change later!

 

scenery always mucks up track work. Best to use a good painters tape (like the blue tape that does not leave any adhesive behind when pulled up) over the tracks and especially the points to protect them. this had been a real killer for some as they get the track perfect and go at a long and messy scenery process only to find they really mucked up points a lot. A few dental picks helps to go over trackwork and points looking for straight clumps causing problems. Also getting a small hose attachment for your vacuum cleaner so you have like a little 1/2” hose to reall suck out all the stray bits around the track. Also clean the track well. You may need to get to using an abrasive eraser or the like to get nasty stuff off but avoid that if you can as it can really scratch up the track and big theory this can allow faster muck spots to form on the track later.
 

Ballasting around points you have to be ultra careful not go muck into the mechanism or too high form the blade mech to swing cleanly. Also don’t want diluted glue getting whacked into the coil chamber and the blade mechs. for point ballasting i just dilute matte medium (or white glue if you want) a bit so it would paint well and then very carefully drop ballast down and tamp it in. After glue dries you can gently brush off excess and repeat to fill in gaps. Afterwards you can even paint a bit of slightly diluted matte medium onto the top of the finished ballast to lock in the very top bits of ballast (these are the weakest held in this method) and then vacuum well after all dry. It’s tedious but flooding dilute glue around points can be a recipe for glue mucking things up.

 

cheers

 

jeff

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AhmadKane

I have some bad news. 

 

I'm out of dough, I got to get some more to get ballasting and static grassing. I'll be focusing on getting some dough and some tracks right now.I'll update progress a bit late this week

 

Sorry y'all

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AhmadKane

So luckily after the previous post, I managed to gain a bit of profit. And I went with it. I bought a couple of ballast materials and some scatter. Particularly the Woodland Scenic Fine Dark Brown and Fine Gray ballast. The Scatter I bought is the burnt grass coarse turf. I've also got some accessories, which I'll feature after I laid the track back. 

 

Now happy of the result on the paddy field. I've decided to add a couple of more around the platform towards the green bridge. Using piled Styrofoam and bordered with cut strips of cardboard covered with glued tissue. Upon drying I painted this with watercolor instead of acrylic paint, and it dried rather quickly. The borders of the paddy field would be normally scattered with static grass, but I experimented using the burnt grass coarse turf. 

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Now surrounding the lake, I have used some meadow static grass, but it wasn't enough to cover the entire area. I relented to scatter some coarse burnt grass and combined it with fine dark brown ballast. Adhesives I used is some PVAc glue mixed with water and sprayed with 3:1 Alcohol - Water ratio. Which in medicine, isn't exactly that difficult to find. 

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I've also placed the area in which the tracks would be layed purely with fine dark brown ballast. The difference is that I slathered the cardboard area with PVAc glue and thinned it out with the brush. Upon scattering with a tea filter, I spreayed it with the glue mixture and the alcohol-water mix. I've also done it for the city area, and covered the carton printed roads with masking tape. 

 

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So the results. I really love how the paddy field is forming but the platform between the two paddy fields may need some augmenting. I'm thinking of adding either bright scatter or some bright green static grass as a counter. The edges of the paddy field might be better with static grass as well. As for the colored base, the color is alright. But I have to point out that unlike the lake, the paddy field might need a longer time to dry. Because when I poured the solvent varnish, the tissue would crack.

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I recommend drying the painted tissue-glue paddy field for 5 days instead of 3, and suggest to slather solvent varnish instead of pouring if you have a glue and tissue base. 

 

Now while waiting all of that to dry, I've practiced ballasting unitrack

 

My first attempt of it is a bit poor, I have to admit. I had thought that it would pile up on the side of the slanting unitrack and would form itself. But the slant isn't that friendly with the ballast, and you'd see yourself piling a lot on one side than neatly making the ballast. The other mistake I did was I used such a large syringe (The one used to pump your stomach), that the pressure would spray unto the ballast, and since its so fine, it pools around the track. As a result, you'd get this ugly concrete presentation that used up more ballast than you should. 

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I've taken to youtube and did my next attempt. This time gluing the sides of the unitrack first. Using my fingers I scattered the ballast within the track like salt, evening it out with a clean brush later. Then I knocked the track with the brush to increase the pressure between the ties. Afterwards I brushed some PVAc glue unto the sides of the unitrack, and noting that the ballast slides, I ballasted the under areas of the unitrack first before ballasting from the top edge. The results are neater, but I reckon if I use a different color than what's established in the ties, it'd show, and I would need to go back to it again. 

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The ballasting process certainly made me wonder on whether I should ballast the track. Because ballasting is commitment, and I don't think I'm capable of making one for it. But I remembered that I'll be mixing minitrix tracks that doesn't have a prefix plastic ballast, and may be forced to. 

 

Anyway, after drying. I am quite happy with the results of the fine ballast as the soil. I certainly like the texture and the feel it gives, it does feel really rough like sandpaper. However the bad news is that the masked road seem to absorb the sprayed glue, as a result, they are wet and severely damaged by the masking tape. Leaving nothing but an outline. 

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I printed more roads and had wanted to place it unto the outlined ballast. Instead, I decided to ballast the entire surface first. The ballast I used for the town is a 3:1 mix of Brown and Gray. But for the outline of the previous road, I ballasted purely with fine gray. I'm attempting to see whether or not I could make the roadside with it. 

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Oh, and I got a shipment from China. Some trees, the ones that cost about 6 dollars for 100 pieces. They are about 4cms tall and may not be of scale. I reckon I could use them to crowd the layout or make a tree farm.... THATS IT, A TREE FARM!! 

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Bloody hell writing these things sometimes gives me ideas. 

 

Anyway, that's what I have for now. I'll be sticking the roads unto the ballast and lay out my track. I'll be ballasting in phases first before moving on. I'm also assembling an overpass station, but looking at the price, is more inclined to buy them instead. 

 

I hope I can make everything operational before Saturday. I have an exam before Ramadhan (FML). So I hope for your prayers. 

 

 

Anyway, Happy Ramadhan Y'all 😉 Hope your scatter stick and your varnishes not crack!

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Martijn Meerts

Have a look at Luke Towan's videos on Youtube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjRkUtHQ774mTg1vrQ6uA5A/videos), he's done a lot of great videos showing how he does things like ballasting, still water, waterfalls, streams, trees, mountains, etc. While it's all H0 scale, the techniques themselves are the same for N scale, and it's actually rather inspirational to watch his videos in general.

 

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AhmadKane
35 minutes ago, Martijn Meerts said:

Have a look at Luke Towan's videos on Youtube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjRkUtHQ774mTg1vrQ6uA5A/videos), he's done a lot of great videos showing how he does things like ballasting, still water, waterfalls, streams, trees, mountains, etc. While it's all H0 scale, the techniques themselves are the same for N scale, and it's actually rather inspirational to watch his videos in general.

 

I wanted to like Luke Towan's videos. I really do... His dioramas are so detailed and so exemplary.

 

But the materials he used are so expensive. Especially since these materials aren't as readily available in Indonesia as I would want it to be. 

 

Nevertheless I'll check is ballast videos

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Martijn Meerts

On his newer video's, he's using a lot of products he's got sponsored, but in earlier ones, he uses dirt from his backyard and grinds up dried leaves and such. He also uses dried plant roots as base for trees etc..

 

The techniques will generally be the same regardless of what materials you use, so you can definitely experiment with the techniques, but use local, easily available materials. 

 

In the end, doing scenery is basically experimenting with various techniques and materials until you find something that works for you. For example, it took me many years before I found a way to paint rock faces that I was happy with.

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cteno4

Nice progress Kane! Ballasting is a bit of an art and takes practice and with Unitrak it’s a lot harder with the plastic ballast already there so it’s a very fine Layer and ties do get buried. Many just ballast the edges of the roadbed with the Kato or home made western scenics blend of ballast that matches the Kato plastic ballast well. You can then weather the Kato plastic and new edge ballast to take off the plastic look of the Kato roadbed. This way you get rougher ballast edges and better blending with your surrounding scenery and not a huge amount of work and it comes up easily and cleans up much faster off the track. Downside is it’s probably expensive to import it to Indonesia, especially right now with no cheaper, slower options. But the upside is that only ballasting the edges you need very little ballast so one small bag of Kato ballast will go a long way!

 

watercolors will start to come back up and continue to mix when they get any water on them but that may help in this situation! 
 

Good you are back at it!

 

jeff

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AhmadKane

Just a small update

 

A layout modeller exhibition is interested in showcasing Nippon Bali in their digital exhibition!

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AhmadKane

Update.

 

So I decided to ballast the tracks now. I'm going to start in areas that would have a high possibility in dipping and in areas that are alright. 

 

This ballast method used pre glued PVAc on the sides only. Then after being lined up by the spoon, I used a syringe to drop a couple of glue and water mix. I've also added some alcohol spray as well. So far so good, noting that I've been rather conservative in the ballast material

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The area after the road crossing has a gap, floating up. It needed some ballasting to be inserted within and supported around. Unlike the one before, since the ground was ballasted brown, adding PVAc glue won't do much justice to the ground. As such, I strictly dripped a modest amount of glue water and alcohol. 

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I've decided to shape a building that didn't sell in my shop. And I purposefully have the road crossing not really straight due to space and rail straightening. Road crossings in Indonesian villages aren't exactly straight as well. 

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I printed an overhead station and wanted to create one. The tracks are too straight with no space for a platform. So I decided to revise the most inner line to allow it to enter the station. I would have to base these tracks with some infraboard as the trackbed. I'm still waiting for the new track and the new electricity connections to complete this. 

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Last but not least, I've begun placing the paddy field. Using a nail, I stabbed the paddy area and marked it with a green marker to enhance the color of fresh paddy. Then using liquid glue, I pressed some unto the holes, and using a dry green brush, I've cut and placed inside the holes. I'll be doing two rounds, the first to make the base shape, the second would be the finishing. Since Paddy fields are really crowded, and the more crowded the area, the more vibrant the color would be against a countercolor solvent varnish chocolate.

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AhmadKane

First Milestone. 

 

Finished Phase 1 of Nippon Bali. It was tiring staying up an extra one to two hours both after and before sahoor in Ramadhan, but I'm really aiming to finish this b4 Eid al Fitr. And today, the first phase is finished. 

 

A couple of notes:

  • I've gotten the tracks for the stations. Due to the suspension of Jpost as well as the lockdown. There's a lot of people starting, constructing and finishing their layouts. As a result, I have to make do with 186mm Kato straights than 248mms. I don't have much track adapters as well, so it's quite difficult fitting everything in. So most of my time right now is playing with the station setup. 
  • After the station setup is made, somehow rolling tests have been rather weird. Cars and trains cut power in some parts and it seems that the joiners have been a bit elongated since the tracks are a bit streched. I've decided to add another power line in some areas, while pressing and soldering joiners in areas that are easier to reach. The power has been cutting off most commonly in the minitrix turnover setup. 
  • I've run out of fine ballast and had some minitrix tracks laying above the ground. So it was difficult. The ballasting has also been rough In some spots, so I had to mark areas in which trains could only go at a certain speed. 

 

So here's part 1 completed. 

 

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So instead of having an overhead station, I decided to use my old KATO platform and measure it between the two tracks. The station would then be accessible in the inner radius, and leaving the outer and middle radiuses cargo and express lanes. I'd also like to point out that in the course of building this layout I am rather distressed at how expensive Tomytec and Greenmax buildings. I can definitely vouch for their quality, just not at this time when scenery and fine tuning the layout would need more investment than the buildings. So after browsing a bit, I stumbled across a guy selling used plarail merch. I then stumbled across this long platform made for plarail advance, and I have to say its detail is rather unique and its height appropriate. What's more is that plarail would normally be as sturdy as they go, and so I bought this really long plarail platform and used the papercraft station entry from the previous overhead station for the time being. It does blend in well. 

 

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Now to create the station yard has been a challenging feat for me. Mostly due to punishment for not laying the tracks before doing scenery work, as a result I'd have to cope with a lack of KATO track with some used Atlas curves. These curves are so gentle and wide they are rather useless in the layout. But they do make excellent correctors. However when I used this, I ran out of fine ballast. So after the wiring work, I had thought of masking the entire area with leftover coarse turf. So using polystyrene, I peeled the color wrap off and using a cutter, fillet cut the top to crease a rougher texture. Then using a mixture of gray crayons presumably from the arsenal of one Christian Grey from 50 shades, I attempted to create the texture of the ballast. After sliding these polysterenes under the track, I then turfed the area with a mixture of dry coarse turf, dark green fine turf and some Noch forest floor static grass I still have in excess. I'd also like to point out that from the plarail seller, I managed to get what is presumably a signal box for a 2 dollars. 

 

It certainly isn't the best but it does make up for the ballast shortage. 

 

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I've made the road neater and started to add some trees alongside the town. Its a full straight from the station to the tunnel. I haven't gotten to the tunnel just yet, but the idea of using a Wile E. Coyote print of a tunnel is certainly enough for it. I've also added a small overhead station on the other side of the river to give it a bit more dynamic feel. At least until I could get some more buildings to crowd the city.

 

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The most notable decoration in the road layout is the inclusion of plastic trees. The way I made them is that using Kokoru paper leftover from my sister's many attempts to create kokoru dolls, I cut a fine strip and encircled the base of the tree with double tape as adhesive. After the tree is adequately and realistically supported, I stuck them unto the sideline of the bridge to create a boulevard. Which from the shot, is a good one overlooking the lake. 

 

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I've also added some trees in this area near the office and was wondering of creating a park. While Indonesia isn't really famous on parks, it is famous on picnic areas and nature trails. The idea would be to have something like a picnic area where people could eat and play while looking at the train diverging unto the bridge. I'd have to get a tomytec or a noch model for a picnic area, so before spending too much on it, I might have to settle with having a car parked in the woodlands for now. 

 

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Now I've gotten about 100 trees from China and have used 90% of them, keeping the extra 10% for fine tuning. The most notable area would be the setting up of a tree farm, and it was certainly a pain having to hand drill unto thick cardboard and wood countless of times to create the pattern. I've also placed some fell trees, and now it's just designing the area. I'm thinking of a woodcutters hut and a small crane to load any wood. After I get some ballast, I'd also attempt to construct a rough road to the area, so not only is this a tree felling operation, it is also the entrance to the beach. Which, added with some coconut trees, may be similar to previous plans in making this look like Lake Biwa. 

 

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Of course I'm rather pleased with hoe the lakeview has been formed. I'm thinking of adding a platform for the plarail platform. Something made of concrete or brick. Either just enclosing the edge using some print walls, or stuff the levitating side with some ballast material. I've also placed that sake factory for decoration, the real plan would be to create either a marina or a lakeside café. The previous plan would be to put Bratan temple in the middle of the lake to make it look more Balinese, but the price is also a bit too high, I've looked to buying some Hindu statues, hopefully they could help with the layout. 

 

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So that's phase 1 published. I'm still working on fine tuning the layout and cleaning up excess turf and static grass. Overall looking back, this has been such a fun and educational layout. This is my first serious layout and I've been learning a lot via youtube and trusting my own gut. Now all that's left is making this a bit more Balinese, which is thru making some Indonesian traditional houses, maybe a river market and just overall fine tuning. The next phase would be to begin construction above the ground, much like Marklin of Sweden's bridge overlooking his waterfall, I too would perhaps be making an extra loop that looks at the waterfall before turning unto a viaduct station. We'll see

 

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AhmadKane
Posted (edited)

Some rolling vids

Edited by AhmadKane
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