About Liberty Street

The Long Story of a Short Railroad

Archives of What's Next - 2009 2011

January 14, 2010: So..., last night I bit the bullet and pulled the buildings off of "Liberty Street". I boxed them carefully and set them aside. I plan to rebuild the scene one day with a more accurate track arrangement but for now, I have taken the project about as far as I can.

And so...We bid a fond farewell to Liberty Street, until we meet again.

No. 3 prepares to leave Liberty Street with the last string of cars.

The last train departs through the gate and into history.

Stoic Liberty Street awaits it's fate.

A view never to be seen again

Something new where Liberty Street once stood

January 27, 2010: One of the guiding principles behind "Liberty Street" was to use out of the box, nothing fancy, Atlas code 83 flex track and turnouts and turnouts. With The "St. Louis Avenue" project I wanted to try my hand at building some turnouts for myself. As it happened, the yard lead on the left (East) would require at least two curved (very curved, 18" radius) turnouts and these are the first turnouts I chose to build. Couldn't have chosen a more complicated way to begin, but, I did learn a lot about building turnouts and in the end they are quite reliable and smooth pieces of track.

Curvable Central Valley turnout tiestrips with code 83 rail were used for these otherwise scratchbuilt turnouts.

For more details, see the section dedicated to Trackwork

February 5, 2010: After playing around with the possiblities for the sceniced portion of "The Neck", (a space of only 12") I finally settled on using all four tracks as on the prototype, slightly scrunched, which angled slightly East by South, two of which would simply die into the backdrop.

Here the tracks are for scenic purposes only and I have reused some track pulled up from "Liberty Street" and a couple of pieces of code 100.

The area around the Tower begins to take shape.

February 9, 2010: Now that there is a little ground cover, I wanted to add some detail to the turnouts. The switches on the main leads East and west and those off the main at the freight house would be controled from the control tower by way of a pneumatic control system. These are made up from various bits of styrene inculding Evergreen rods and the cylinder is a bit of sprue. Part of the reason for modeling this area is to include some of these air lines into the scenery. It is one of those one evening junk box projects.

An ultra close-up of the control set-up. The target is non-functional, but with a bit of inginuity I'm sure it could be animated.

Just another shot from the opposite direction.

February 18, 2010: Looking at the photo of the ''Neck'', I could see a signal mast was called for. Researching signal masts of the period and judging from the features I could make out on the photo I drew my idea of the mast I thought would look most appropriate. Then it was just a matter of putting together some brass tube and bits of styrene with a ladder and a little porch with railings, all made from Central Valley fence and ladder sets, and then adding some M.V.Products lenses, etc... A two day project that ended with a really delicate looking signal mast.

My original drawing of the signal mast.

From left to right early, middle, and final assembly.

The signal mast in position.

February 28, 2010: The background is another new problem for me. With ''Liberty Street'' all I needed was a peek at the larger world, but with the vast expanse open to the East and South of the Wabash yard I was faced with a new challenge. Nothing in this area today is very much as it was in 1895. Even the bluff has been greatly transformed with new highways and retaining walls, the bridge over the ''Neck'' has been replaced and moved slightly. So...photographing this spot was not a viable option.

No suitable commercial scenes were avalilable so, I found it neccessary to draw and paint a backdrop representing this area myself. To see my solution and the on going project of blending it into the scene, click on the image below.

Shortcut to the Background Page

Novermber 3, 2010: Over the last eight months very little has happened layout wise. The bridge over the freight house was completed and some more track was laid up the road but there has been little time for modelling in ernest. Then about a month ago, the server service I was using went missing and with it my web page...or a good deal of it. Like a dummy, I had not backed up a lot of content and while I do still have the images, the HTML from some of the pages disappeared and I am in the process of rebuilding now. My son set up the home computer as a server and now I bring these pages to you literally from my front room.

One positive aspect of this disaster may be that it has gotten me back into the groove of thinking about my modelling and hopefully it will give me the urge to add to the site with more new information. We will see. Anyway, I am still alive and well the St. Louis Avenue Yard is still a-building. I am building one new car...something a little later than my era but an interesting car non-the-less,