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Tony Galiani

2021 New Year, New Project 1 - Tram Layout

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Tony Galiani

While I have been pleased with my most recent project, Chihiro Horikawa, sometimes I like to putter on my workbench and have a train running around.  So I am currently thinking of two new projects - a small tram layout (which will use the stock from Chihiro Horikawa) and possibly a slightly larger oval that I can use to run in some of my longer trains.

 

So, here is a start on the tram project idea.  I had some of the Kato Compact Unitrack and have set up a small oval.  The radius is too tight for most Kihas and Kokis (hence Plan B) but it works for the shorter DMUs and trams.  The track and wiring are now in place.  Next step will be to weather the track and improve the look of the roadbed.  On Chihiro Tetsudo, I went through the tedious effort of ballasting the Kato Unitrack.  It took a long time and really slowed down the project.  So this time I am trying a different idea.  I will apply some ballast to hide the joints but my main effort will be to use a weathering wash to reduce the plastic shine of the Kato Unitrack.  If it does not work as well as I hope, I can always revisit ballasting in the layout.

 

Meanwhile, I am going to fret over how to scenic the layout.  I have been inspired by a number of small layouts on the Japan Railway Modelers of DC web site and plan to steal (I mean borrow) ideas to develop the scene.  While I put in overhead wire on Chihiro Horikawa, I think I might use the more typical approach of just adding poles for the catenary but not trying to add the  wire.  I actually did not have too much trouble placing the wires on Chihiro Horikawa (since the layout was so simple) but keeping the pantographs at an even height was a challenge.  Some of the Tomix trams come with fixed pantographs which are set low.  The other Kato and Tomix metal pantographs worked better but the height was variable and the only way I could figure to keep them in place would have been to glue them in a fixed position which I was reluctant to do.  Anyway, I may revisit that but first on to the track work.

 

Scenic ideas always welcomed.

Ciao,

Tony Galiani

NY Layout 1.jpg

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Tony Galiani

I was able to do a bit more work yesterday and after gluing down the Unitrack, I tried my idea for hiding the seams between the Unitrack sections.  I mixed up some ballast, water and white glue into a paste and applied it to the seams.  I am pleased with the results.  The ballast dried a bit darker than in this picture but the gaps are much less obvious.  Next step will be to do a cover the track and ballast with a flat weathering wash and then I will paint the rail sides.

Ciao,

Tony Galiani

NY Layout Track close up.jpg

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