Showing posts with label Ground Cover. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ground Cover. Show all posts

Monday, January 4, 2016

New Project - 140' Thru Plate Girder Bridge - Part 7 Abutments

A little work over the holidays, applied first and second coat of texture to bridge abutments. Initially coated abutments with a cheap gray primer rattle can paint from Walmart. Then was a mixture of lite-weight joint compound, water and black/tan paint to a consistency of thick tomato soup.

Second coat applied today

Once dried, I will sand hi-points and if needed a third coat.

Also started a little ground work in area behind bridge

On another note, I created a new blog for my interest in TT Scale modeling (1:120) , so if your interested in TT Scale come follow me there.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Sand Ground Cover or Ballast

Yesterday after getting home from a ops session, I found a amazon package at the door with the coffee grinder I had order. Why a coffee grinder you ask.

I have been looking for a way to duplicate sand in N scale that I was happy with.

I am try to recreate this 1957 T&P Texarkana yard scene for my Bonham yard

I ran across this tip while internet searching (I found others too) and want to give this a try.

Late yesterday and today I have been experimenting.

First a word of caution this technique creates a "fine powder" and play havoc with your sinus, so use a good filtered mask. I am finally getting better today after not using a mask yesterday.

Materials :

  • Coffee grinder (Black & Decker CBG100S Smartgrind Coffee Grinder, Stainless Steel)
  • Tree leaves for your choice (cotton wood and catalpa what I had on hand)
  • Kitchen wire strainers
  • Reusable coffee strainer basket
  • various size food / laundry container  
Blenders were also used instead of a coffee grinder in other articles I found,

I start with collecting leave from the yard (about 2/3 of a tall kitchen trashcan liner) and hand crushing them into a small laundry container. Yesterday a did a small batch of about 1/3 of the laundry container and today about 3/4 full.

Next was to place small batches (1/3 cup) of crush leaves into the coffee grinder, followed mfg instruction here as this was best result for me also.

I pulse the grinder 10 times and then a 10 second continuous grind. Mfg recommend usage was a max 30 second continuous grind.

I strained this thru 1st of 2 kitchen strainers 3-4" diameter strainer.

Initial results after complete today batch of leaves, many batches thru grinder and first strainer

I reprocess the course material on the right above, back thru the grinder and strainer

Next step, I strained the material thru a small 1.5-2" kitchen strainer into the reusable coffee filter/strainer.

 After processing thru the reusable coffee filter/strainer. I was left with three grades of material results

Course grade (about 1 or 1-1/2 Tablespoon)

Medium grade (about 3-4 oz)

Fine grade (about 20 oz)


First pass thru grinder and strainer I believe would be good for HO Scale, but the additional filtering thru smaller strainers yielded a better product for N scale in my opinion.

I like to find a strainer between the small kitchen (about .030" openings) and the reusable coffee filter, this I believe would create a better distinction between the course and medium grades.

Time wise, I spend about just under 2 hrs today and 1 hour yesterday. Quantities above are all  estimates, forgot to weight empty containers before processing.

Color is not where I would like it, but I think that will take some leaves of yellow and/or red.