Wednesday, February 19, 2014

On to Ione!

Soon-to-be Engine No. 2 of the Stockton & Ione RR arrives opposite downtown Ione City. The real S&I No. 2 was an
0-6-4T while this engine is modeled after the DSP&P's 2-6-6Ts.
From the Amador Times:
Late Monday night, rails of the Stockton & Ione line finally reached our bustling city and the shrieking of railroad whistles filled the night air. Our railroad connection to Stockton and the outside world has arrived.

Another way to put would be that I spent a couple of days finishing the trackwork from what I've been calling Forbe's Crossing to Ione. There's still no wiring; I'm working out any inaccuracies in the turnouts and I had to get things cleaned up for Prairie Rail 2014 which is occurring in Kansas City this weekend. Prairie Rail is an invitational bi-annual model railroad operations weekend. This coming February 21-23, about 120 model railroaders from all over the country are converging on the Kansas City area, each to spend time operating on four of the 29 model railroads participating in the event.
   The S&C will be hosting two three-hour operating sessions during the weekend as will the other model railroads. We've done this before and it's a lot of fun meeting folks from out of state and getting to know them.
   Not all of the work you see in the photos was done in the two days I mention, however. The four turnouts, two of which are 3-ways, were built several weeks ago and were just waiting to be installed. After Prairie Rail is over and I catch up on some of the things around the house that I have been putting off until after Prairie Rail, I can get back and get the track wired. After that, I will have to get serious about getting some locomotives built or modified.
Looking north at the small Ione yard. A diamond has to be built so that the industrial sidings can access a couple of businesses but most of the area will be the townsite.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Stockton & Ione Railroad - Track Reaches Forbes Crossing

A Stockton & Ione work train pushes flat cars with track-laying supplies near the new depot. The Amador Coal Company is at the left.
Stockton Daily Independent - August 20, 1875
In a flurry of activity, track crews of the narrow-gauge Stockton & Ione Railroad laid track from its junction with the Stockton & Copperopolis to Forbes Crossing. Officials of the railroad expect that trains will be running to Ione City by September.

    Well, the above is not really from the Stockton Daily Independent but it shows that some work has been done and engines have been run over the track, after a fashion anyway. There is no wiring as yet but jumper cords do wonders. As a short feeder line for the S&C, the S&I won't be much of a railroad but more of a switching line. Forbes Crossing will be a small town with a coal mine run by Amador Coal and served by the railroad. A short team track will be the only other track there. The reason for this new construction is that the National Narrow Gauge Convention is coming to Kansas City this September and the Stockton & Copperopolis has been asked to be on the layout tours. I figured that there should be some narrow gauge trains running even if there are not very many.
The S&I leaves 3-rail track at the far right, passes through "Forbes Crossing" and will continue to the left.

Looking from the junction, the whole of "Forbes Crossing" is seen. The team track is at the right with the Amador Coal-to-be building at the rear.

    The mine structure used to represent a silver mine on my previous layout and it will be repurposed into the needed coal mine including a new "Amador Coal" sign. The small depot was at Forbes Crossing on the old layout as well and the town may or may not be renamed as well. When I started this project, I did not think that many of the old buildings would be usable on this railroad but, so far, I have managed to reuse several of them much to my enjoyment.
   The track construction is the same as on the main railroad, foam insulating tape with flex track glued to it with silicon caulk. Code 55 is used for the main lines and code 40 for the sidings. The turnouts are all code 55 built from Fast Tracks jigs.

The traveling photographer disembarked from the noon Peters train to capture the image of an 1887 Benz newly-arrived in the neighborhood.

Like most photographers, Mr. Ball uses an 8x10 inch wet-plate camera on which to capture his images. These plates must be developed in the photographer's wagon within a few minutes following their exposure.

On another note, I finished painting a couple of small figures so I put them to use on the railroad.
This elderly woman was painted by grand-daughter Jessica,
7 years old. It was her first foray into figure painting.

It's lunchtime and, before making his deliveries, one of the workers decides to entertain his friends on someone else's piano.