Running Bear's March 2020 Coffee Shop is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.

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As I mentioned before, I had some trouble with the decal signage for my gas station. The old Walthers letter decals are so thin and delicate that they all disintegrated coming off the wet paper. I was able to use the Victory Gas logo decals shown in the following pictures.
I used my computer to make various sized signs for this station and another project needing signs. Before printing out, I marked the paper so I could duplicate the page orientation in the printer. I cut a piece of thin gift bag tissue and taped it to cover the printed area on the page. Then, I printed the same page again on the tissue paper. I carefully removed the tape and lightly sprayed the tissue with clear finish to set the ink.
I cut out each sign, brushed water on the area of the building where the sign goes and brushed a glue/water mix over the sign.
Here is a picture of the printed signs and more of the installed signs.



Well-Known Member
I’m new to backdrops, this is the first layout I have done one on. I have this section where the old meets new. What are your opinions on what looks better the straight, or curved where the new section blends the old. Is there an advantage to one vs the other? They both look odd to me.


GNRR Mechanic always fixing stuff
That's horrible! Even me out in the real backwoods of Texas gets 6.1 Mbs down. I haven't checked the upload in a while, but it was nearly 1.5 Mbs a few years ago.
Funny how a judge broke AT&T up years ago, and they're slowly getting back together!
The 8 or 9 baby bells are back to 2 (Verizon and AT&T). I have a cable provider in the neighbor hood that can get me faster speeds, but their customer service and always wanting to charge to fix problems that aren't caused by me led me to disconnect them in 2009 when digital TV came about. I get 72 channels (although there are a about a dozen duplicates due to repeater stations) for free. I still only watch about 6-8 consistantly.

Gilligan's Island: Proof you CAN live without toilet paper!!
But you gotta have someplace to bury the leaves...

Apparently, the wife of Hobby Lobby's owner had a vision from God that told them to keep all their stores open, unless ordered to close by the Dept. of Health. Moeover, they are not giving their employees paid sick leave. I don't want to turn this into a (banned) religious discussion, most of you already know my views, but on purely ethical grounds but I will no longer give them my business. My personal boycott won't bother them in the least, but it will make me feel better. Either we're in this together, or we're not.
I read a commentary on that yesterday, along the lines of how christian it is to have Sundays for family, but not enough to care for the well being of their employees...

I have a gift certificate that I need to use. I just can't afford to let them have the money without some goods.

migalyto: I think the curved softens the view to look more realistic. Either look odd when compared to what you'd see in the "prototype" world.

On a final note for this post, I think it's time to empty the fuel from the snowblower and put it back in the back shed as I don't need it in the garage anymore this season. Bought in November 2014 and only has a couple of hours use on the engine. The season I don't have it, we get


Section Hand
Good Morning Everyone....sunny and getting warmer.

Yesterday, when testing turnouts one turnout did not operate. I checked the power at the leads at the Tortoise machine and there was power was I disconnected the card edge connector on the Tortoise and exchange a new Tortoise and it didn't work either. This test proved that the Tortise wasn't faulty and I was happy I didn't have to replace the Tortoise due to its location on the layout and my ability to work that distance from the access point.

My next move was to check the mini-toggle switch at the panel, which meant I had to dismantle the entire panel and remove all the mini-toggles to work on just one. The toggle was a DTDP and wired for operating a Tortoise and pins for each direction (poles) were getting power at the same time no matter which way the handle was set. I only had one DPDT toggle in stock and it was used so I had to unsolder the wires, file the connector pins to clean them and now rewire. I'll finish tomorrow since I have to go the hospital for some testing.

I never had a Minitronics mini-toggle switch fail. I may do an autopsy on the switch to determine what failed.

I took a slight fall to the floor when I stepped on my on one of mine feet. Nice nose job which I broke and I have a large scab on the bridge of the nose. Actually I broke the nose three times since I was 13 and now after breaking it again, I can breath better!!! I also have a nice wound on my right hand. No broken bones thank goodness.

Tomorrow is a total train day. I'm getting behind even with no when to go. I have a heart/lung test in a few weeks that I'm going to cancel. I don't want to spent and time in a hospital if I can avoid it. Can't wait for warmer weather to arrive.

You guys have been busy on your layouts during the Corona Virus thing. Is anyone running low on supplies?

That's all for now.




Well-Known Member
I’m new to backdrops, this is the first layout I have done one on. I have this section where the old meets new. What are your opinions on what looks better the straight, or curved where the new section blends the old. Is there an advantage to one vs the other? They both look odd to me.
View attachment 45595View attachment 45596
I like the curved, looks more realistic.


Curse You, Red Baron!
Staff member
Greetings from the Left Coast!
Supposed to be 60 today up from 58 now! Forecast is for "Mostly Cloudy" - currently solid overcast?

Had another lousy night and took a "sleeping aid" round 2 am - then did not want to wake up this morning; however all the smoke detectors decided to go ape at 7AM for some reason. Rolled out of bed grasping for the stepladder and yanked them all off the ceilings. Just checked and all six batteries were less than 8.5 volts which I assume is what set them off - poor puppies went crazy trying to find something to crawl under. Well, they can just stay down for a while - I'm not going to the store just to get a half dozen batteries even if I have to wear clothes.(Patrick)

Managed to patch the hole at the daughters house yesterday, but I may have screwed up. I didn't look close enough and my neighbor gave me a container which he "thought" was joint mud - it was plaster! I managed to slip a thin piece of plywood behind the hole and glue/screw it in place. I went ahead and filled the hole with the plaster and I will go up in awhile and see if it is going to work. I will use some long screws to go into the plywood through the wall bracket and if the plaster will not flake out it should be OK.

Don't really have anything else going at the moment - still just a little groggy from the sleeping pill.
Great photos, Mikey - like your gas station work.
RAY (TooT) - REally like your photos .. Your tempting me to model the MRL?


"retired" conductor
I’m new to backdrops, this is the first layout I have done one on. I have this section where the old meets new. What are your opinions on what looks better the straight, or curved where the new section blends the old. Is there an advantage to one vs the other? They both look odd to me.
Mike I FWIW like the curved backdrop better.

Mikey Nice save on the gas station signage.

Sherrel have you not been getting the soft warning chirps from the smoke detectors 1st?

Work is almost boring us to tears, the phone is silent, maybe a half a dozen cars scheduled for the morning, we spend half the day just trying to look busy. Yet we are essential. What a pile of bovine excrement this is!
I'd much rather be home, in the basement!

PRR Modeler

Well-Known Member
Afternoon All,

LAWN CAMP third day is done. I trimmed the taller 4x4's and applied tar to the tops of the 4x4's and 1x6's. I also did several other small outdoor projects. MOH went to the grocery store and I think we're all set for a couple of weeks.

James- Interesting truck load and rail car.

Toot- Nice 1:1 pictures.

Bob- Nice road bridge shot.

Mikey- Nice decaling.

Willie- The junk yard scene is going to be nice when finished. Of course it will be a PRR based layout and it will all be about coal in the early 1950's.

I hope everyone has a good night.


Beach Bum
keep all their stores open, unless ordered to close by the Dept. of Health. Moreover, they are not giving their employees paid sick leave

Beady: Like so many "successful" small businesses, they built their success on the generosity of the taxpayer, (SBA Loan), and importing junk from low wage countries then selling it at a large mark-up...Paying a living wage and providing basic benefits to their "dedicated" employees would cut into their profits...Wife and I avoid the place... I especially find it offensive that they boast their "religious" views. Gives people of faith a bad name...

JoAnn Fabric is taking the same position on voluntary closing. And while their ownership may also "answer to a Higher Authority", they don't flaunt it.

Meanwhile, here in Sequesterville, it's cold and rainy again...outlook is for a nice day tomorrow, then a weekend of rain. At least that will encourage those who wish to ignore Social Distancing to stay in...otherwise, they might melt... Meanwhile, we are voluntarily isolating ourselves

Interesting theory, those that had the flu,may have had Corona and not known it...Wife and I were wondering how so many people who claimed to have received a flue shot, were coming down with the flu?

Today, is the 109th Anniversary of the Triangle Shirt Waist Factory fire in Greenwich Village, NYC. 700 people were working inside the building when the fire started, and 140 perished. This tragedy is credited with causing the founding of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. Also 30 Years ago this date, The Happyland Social Club Fire in the Bronx, killed 87 people. This was at the time, the largest number of people killed by a single mass murderer.

Spent the day, on the computer, which is not really good for my posterior :confused:

Reading Power pre Conrail.jpg

Take a ride on the Reading...If you pass Go, you had the signal ;)
RS32s and P Truck at Rochester NY Fuel pad.jpg

Another view of the Rochester, NY Fuel Pad. This one featuring Alco RS32s and the P truck.


Curse You, Red Baron!
Staff member
KARL - NOPE, No prior warning ... I have had one or two go off a few years ago, but never ALL of them at once?
My own fault - I thought about changing the batteries a couple months back - it's been 5 years since they were changed?

INCIDENTALLY! I could not get the video to play -- I have had other videos not play as well - just on this website?


Sprue-n-Glue Victim
Afternoon, everyone!

Couldn't make it in earlier this morning, because I was out to shovel snow before the sun came up. I knew it was going to be a nicer day with the sun shining, and I didn't want a melt freezing to ice on my patio on the north side. And it is a beautiful day, with sun and pillow clouds. Made it up to 0C, so far.
At least I don't have to hoard water. All I have to do is suck on the icicle that's growing out of my eavestrough down-pipe:
If you have a keen eye, you can see the rabbit tracks down in the snow. So there is a food supply nearby, as well.

I've been trying to roof that little garage with 220 grit sandpaper. Gluing the sandpaper strips down and then weighting it with what ever is available. Filled some bottles with split shot, and put batteries into the garage. It's all just an exercise in patience.
Sorry about that crappy picture, but there's a 'Do Not Disturb' sign on it. So I can't move it to the photo area. Dry time, you know.

I read all your messages. Just so you know.

Here's a photo of both those SD40's together. When I took these photos, they were idling. I suppose they leave these idle so they don't freeze up on them. The bunkhouse where the men are sleeping can just be made out between the locomotives.
EMD SD40-2W_03-04-2020 (1).JPG

All have a great evening.
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