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Dirt and Gravel

By July 25, 2023August 5th, 2023Scenery2 min read

July 25, 2023

A base coat of real dirt was applied using a kitchen strainer.  I had containers of dirt that I brought from the nothern California area that I model.  A 50/50 coat of white glue was used to hold everything in place.

The spur would have no ballast or so little it had basically disappeared.  Real dirt was applied, wetted down with alcohol to eliminate surface tension, and then a 3/1 mix of ModPodge and water was dribbled on.  When the dirt had dried, it had turned a dark brown.  I could not remember what I did years ago to eliminate this problem.

Rubbing the dark and surrounding areas blended it in.  I will try using hair spray to set it, but wanted to wait until the rest of the track was ballasted.

Two cows wandered over into fresh plaster of Paris where loading pens would be.  When dry, dirt was applied.

My passing sidings still have the original red rock that was mined from a nearby volcanic area.  I dribbled some along the main line illustrating what was underneath before re-ballasting.  The gray ballast has had some fine sand added to the mix.

A tablespoon filled with real rock ballast from Arizona Rock & Mineral was applied by running the spoon along the edge of the ties.  Some ballast was dribbled down the middle.  A tapered paint brush was run along each rail forming the ballast slope.  My index and middle finger were rubbed along the outside of the ties to clean them off.  Index finger down the middle of the track did the same thing.  Finally, rails were tapped with the wooden end of a paint brush to help everything settle.  There was very little clean-up work to be done removing ballast from ties.  A wooden BBQ skewer was used to clean out areas around the switches.

None of my 10-year-old spray bottles would work.  New ones will be delivered this afternoon.  The large ones I used before so ordered the same thing.  Apparently, my small mister was no longer available on Amazon, so I’m trying a new one designed for beauty shops.  I’ll let you know how they work and post links next time.

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