Saturday, February 28, 2009

My modeling assistant,....

...who always makes sure I have plenty to do regardless of how pristine the original model was, is the USPS...


...bless them.

Captain Chesley Sullenberger...

"We're gonna be in the Hudson..."

An amazing video animation of the event...

Friday, February 27, 2009


And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him. And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!

"I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure."---Eric Liddell, "Chariots of Fire"

For some time now a friend has been working for one less paycheck a month because he and his coworkers believed the owner was strapped and would honor his debt to them when things got better.

Yesterday they came in to find representatives from the bank in the office. They were taking over the property and informed the employees that, 1. The owner had the money all along and simply didn't pay them, owing some upwards of $2,000 or more---he used the money for his own business interests elsewhere. 2. The bank was not going to be making up those lost wages. 3. From that point on they all were working for minimum wage until a buyer could be found.

My week ended with me finding out that over $20k in medical bills were paid, leaving me with a very small amount of debt compared to the beginning of the week.

Two brothers in Christ, two very different weeks, I would be a fool to post some theological sounding verbal effluent that would have God smiting one wayward soul whilst blessing an obedient one. Truth be told, God could rain the Apocalypse right down on my own patch of real estate and be just, loving, merciful and wise in doing so, I fall that short of His standard, even now.

"Well then, why do you get to spend all this time playing with toys whilst your brethren are getting their clocks cleaned? Why don't you put that stuff down, roll up your sleeves and start cleaning some of this mess up?"

Because my brother and sister, like Eric Liddell found in his passion for running---so long as he was doing it for the Glory of God in this world as performed by one so faulty yet forgiven and devout---, I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me a modeler. And when I model, I feel His pleasure.

No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

December 1978 Model Railroader magazine...


...for those who remember when Jimmy Carter was President.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wednesday's Word, John Newton 1725-1807...


...from his sermon, The Imminent Danger, And The Only Sure Resource Of This Nation"

"I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever."---Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Monday, February 23, 2009

...I'm tellin' ya, you gotta try this out.

Just arrived in my mail box today...


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mark 13:5-23...

And Jesus answering them began to say, Take heed lest any man deceive you: For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And when ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars, be ye not troubled: for such things must needs be; but the end shall not be yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows. But take heed to yourselves: for they shall deliver you up to councils; and in the synagogues ye shall be beaten: and ye shall be brought before rulers and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them. And the gospel must first be published among all nations. But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost. Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains: And let him that is on the housetop not go down into the house, neither enter therein, to take any thing out of his house: And let him that is in the field not turn back again for to take up his garment. But woe to them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! And pray ye that your flight be not in the winter. For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created unto this time, neither shall be. And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect's sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days. And then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not: For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect. But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Tyco HO scale Canadiana 50' box car...

...part two of my international postal swap.


"Canadiana" simply refers to objects related to Canada and the date 1867 refers to the year Canada became a Dominion in the British Commonwealth.

...and you thought this hobby was just about playing with toy trains.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The countdown to the Big Five-O begins...

...and it starts with a whimper---A Keys-U-See keyboard for my aging eyes...sigh...


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Tyco Alco Century 430 "Canadiana", circa mid 1970s...

...a birthday present to me as a result of an international postal swap. Made for the Canadian market, I'll be using it to tweek my Tyconaut brethren from the great white north who are trying to find their own example, especially in this good a condition.

---I might consider a deal if it includes taking back William Shatner and Garry Trudeau.


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Wednesday's Word, Ecclesiastes 2:4-11...

I made me great works; I builded me houses; I planted me vineyards: I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them of all kind of fruits: I made me pools of water, to water therewith the wood that bringeth forth trees: I got me servants and maidens, and had servants born in my house; also I had great possessions of great and small cattle above all that were in Jerusalem before me: I gathered me also silver and gold, and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces: I gat me men singers and women singers, and the delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts. So I was great, and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem: also my wisdom remained with me. And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labour: and this was my portion of all my labour. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.

It's no secret to my regular readers my fondness for old school model railroading, be it books, magazines or models. There is a somewhat morbid side to my interest in that I never forget that those beautiful layouts and model work of old, in all likelihood, no longer exist. With the exception of some buildings, rolling stock and locomotives, nearly all the layouts from 30 or more years ago went into the dumper upon the passing of their builders. It would not surprise me that one or two of my older pieces at one time graced the pages of a modeling magazine all those years ago, only to find its way to my collection through years of yard sales, auctions and swap meets.

Corrie ten Boom once said, "Receive all things from God with thanks, only hold them with open hands." Never forget that your hobby is a temporal thing and will matter little in the grand plan of Eternity.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Model Railroading musta been a hoot... 1955. From page 124-125 in the book "Model Railroading", written by Harry Zarchy, in the chapter "MAKING SCENERY", here's what is suggested for covering your window screen wire mountains...

"Ordinary asbestos furnace cement can also be used. Mix the powdered cement to a putty-like consistency, adding a little water at a time. Apply it to the screen with a putty knife, or your hands, modeling it at the same time as though it were clay. Do one small section at a time...Powdered asbestos is sometimes mixed with Portland cement or plaster of Paris to make a covering for wire screening."

Been a while since you could go down to your local hardware store and pick up a bag of asbestos powder...


Apparently it was a readily available and popular modeling medium back then. From a caption under a picture on page 26 in the book "Scenery for Model Railroads" by Bill McClanahan...

Andy _____ uses a mixture of 20 parts asbestos powder, 2 parts plaster of paris, 1 parts paper hanger's wheat paste, 9 parts water (all by volume) to make tacky plaster that he applied to screen with wet fingers...


Monday, February 16, 2009

After 150 years....

...Marklin is on the skids.

Don't get me started on my thoughts concerning taxpayer monies being used for private companies---even Marklin.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Isaiah 30:9-15...


Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever: That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD: Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us. Wherefore thus saith the Holy One of Israel, Because ye despise this word, and trust in oppression and perverseness, and stay thereon: Therefore this iniquity shall be to you as a breach ready to fall, swelling out in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly at an instant. And he shall break it as the breaking of the potters' vessel that is broken in pieces; he shall not spare: so that there shall not be found in the bursting of it a sherd to take fire from the hearth, or to take water withal out of the pit. For thus saith the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Friday, February 13, 2009

It's been a hard week for a lot of folks...

From a private forum...

To The Group,

Last night just after 10 PM I was on the computer reading messages and working on my NYC Freight Car research.

Then, my evening was turned up side down. Continental Flight 3407 from Newark to Buffalo crashed just over a mile from my home. Over 13 volunteer fire companies as well as State Police, Sheriffs and medical personnel (many of whom I know personally) responded, but there was little anyone could do. All aboard the plane perished. One person in the house on Long Street that was hit was killed. His wife and daughter escaped and were transported to a local hospital and will survive.

Our small community is in shock. We are heart broken over this tragedy. One of the workers in our hardware store lost a relative. A local widow whose husband died in the 9/11 tragedy was also on that plane. There are so many more whose lives will be broken. Our hearts and blessings go out to all the victims and their families and their friends.

I know we all spend a lot of time and effort in our hobbies and work and activities. But I will suggest to all to take extra time every day with your family and friends.

Never forget that, whatever your hobby, life is too fleeting to be so caught up in it that you miss the people standing next to you, sleeping next to you, or tugging at your shirt wanting to play.

Put the glue down and back away from the'll wait.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Boley 1/87 fire trucks...

As the son and brother of firefighters, I can't resist these. Boley makes a fantastic product for the money, the two red ones were purchased at Hobby Lobby for $3.99 each, an unbelievable price when compared to Busch, Wiking and Praline.




I hope to letter them for the three family fire companies eventually.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wednesday's Word, Luke 13:1-5

There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

Monday, February 9, 2009

1/87 HO scale Racing Champions Florida Lottery show van tractor/trailer...

Aye, I've succumbed to the prevailing wisdom that state sponsored vice, avarice and greed are good so long as the monies collected are used for our children's education---not.



It is a unique truck that I've never seen before, picked up for $2 at a local flea market. I'm still a sucker for cheap HO scale vehicles.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing...

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great help I’ve come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.

Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

World's largest radio controlled model airplane...

...a 1/5 scale model of the B29 "Dina Might".

Friday, February 6, 2009

Little Plastic Beings...

I tend to buy most of my figures as unpainted castings. This way I can modify them as I see fit so that there is no repetition in poses. The girl on the pier is a composite made from no less than three figures, the embracing couple is done with five. I make a plastic putty from the casting sprues by dissolving them in Testor's Plastic Glue. I apply lumps of it where I'd like to add hair or enhance features, allow it to harden about 24 hours, then carve it to shape and paint. My workbench can look like Frankenstein's lab at times...


Thursday, February 5, 2009

Coleco Electric Football...

...yes, it's modeling, I had to paint all my figures in my set...ended up painting them for the 'Skins and the Colts...well, at least as close to those teams as a 10-year-old could get.

It's gonna be a long, dry summer 'til the pigskin flies again...sigh...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Wednesday's Word, A.W. Pink...

...from his "Studies in the Scriptures, August 1944"

“The wisdom of God appears in ordaining such contemptible and, in appearance, opposite means, to accomplish such glorious effects. The way is as wonderful as the work. That Christ dying on the cross, a reputed malefactor, should be made our everlasting righteousness; that descending to the grave, He should bring up a lost world to life and immortality, is so incredible to our narrow understandings that He saves us and astonishes us at once. In nothing is it more visible that the thoughts of God are far above our thoughts and His ways above our ways as heaven is above the earth (Isa 55:8). It is a secret in physic to compound the most noble remedies of things destructive to nature, and thereby, make one death victorious over another: but that eternal life should spring from death, glory from ignominy, blessedness from a curse, is so repugnant to human sense that to render the belief of it easy, it was foretold by many prophets, that when it came to pass, it might be looked on as the effect of God’s eternal counsels” (W. Bates, The Harmony of the Divine Attributes, 1680).

WARNING: A.W. Pink is not for the passive pew warmer.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

HO scale 4-12-12-6 articulated---in gold...

From the January '73 Model Railroader magazine, page 43. It reads;

"Except for the motor and eight helical gears, this 1:87 free-lance 4-12-12-6 locomotive was crafted entirely in 18-karat gold by R Damiano of Milan, Italy. The value of the gold alone is more than $2200; including some 3500 hours of construction, the builder values the model at $25,000. The design somewhat follows Union Pacific RR."




It's been 35 years, I wonder what ever became of it.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Bachman N scale mail truck...

...turned into an ice cream truck.

These ran all over the beach in the 80s where I used to live. All I did was strip the Postal markings, then open up a side service window. The loudspeakers were made from Tyco HO diesel horns. I drilled the centers for a pin to mount them, leaving a nubbin to represent the sound horn. I considered further decorations but felt they would look too cartoonish. Maybe I'll give other decorations a try later but, for now, my youngest LPBs** are happy to lap up all the ice cream they can get.



**Little Plastic Beings...yeah, I know...sad isn't it?...

Sunday, February 1, 2009

I you know him?

A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.