A visit to my layout by a local model railroader motivates me to complete some half finished model railroad layout projects.

There’s nothing like a visit by a fellow model railroader to motivate someone to pay some close attention to their model railroad layout. That’s what I found over the last week. With some help from my wife, I was able to contact a local model railroader and we organised a time to meet. I suggested he come and have a look at my layout. And when I went out there a few days before I realised that there were a lot of half finished, or otherwise incomplete ‘projects’. So I rolled up the sleeves, grabbed whatever tools I needed, and completed as many of the smaller projects as I could. These included:

Adding some ground cover top the Blue Island extension module that I have been building extremely slowly since late 2017.
Completing the deck of the retaining wall that separates the Illinook and Calumet City industry trackage. I still need to paint the deck and add some extra scenic elements,
Adding a safety fence between an industry and ruins of buildings on the east end of the Illinook module.
Added ground cover between the Illinook trackage (on the left) and the Calumet City industry trackage (on the right).

I also painted some bare parts of the backdrop, which actually went a long way to making it look more presentable.

After looking through my previous blog posts, I realised that the Blue Island extension module which I mention earlier in this post hasn’t really been pictorially featured in the blog. I did a write up of why it was built, but have never posted any pictures to show what was done. So here are some photos of the module taken during it’s life.

This was the module during it’s early construction. One track is ballasted, and there is very little ground cover.
Lots of little details have been added including general yard clutter and odds and ends.
Old corrugated iron, wire reels.
A small platform. with wire rolls, etc. The track next to the small platform often held MoW cars.
An overall view of the Blue Island extension module, as it was before our move last December. This is looking towards what is now the interface with the Blue Island module. The track on the outer right is used for storing locomotives and cabooses that wont fit in the MPD. The two middle tracks are an extension of the tracks on the Blue Island module. The far left track represents the whole IHB mainline west and north of Blue Island yard, including all it’s connections and often has trains from BN Cicero/Clyde,IL or Eola/Aurora,IL
With the opening through the western end of the Blue Island module where the extension is connected I am also able to take some photos ‘through’ the opening. Like this.

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