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moderated Pulpwood loads

Jim King
 

Attached are 2 pix showing 1 of 6 wood racks that I’m trying to finish (built at Spencer 1951-52 from 40’ double sheathed wood boxes).  This is one of the last kits I produced before selling the HO line to Wright Trak 7 years ago.  In exchange for some S scale kits, Jim Schall, noted S scale modeler who’s also a graphic artist by trade, built 6 cars for me minus lettering.  He simulated bark remnants on the deck with tea leaves (really clever).  Since he built these for me, I’ve moved the modeling era back to 1957-62 so 3 or 4 of the cars will be repainted black from the current Southern Frt Car Red.  Roman lettering was applied to brown/red cars starting in late 1957 but, since wood racks were about as low on the priority list as a freight car could get, especially since they didn’t typically interchange, it was common to see black cars with Roman lettering into the early 70s when these cars started down the retirement path.

 

The load shown is made from Christmas tree (pine) clippings.  A lot of work and I’m not pleased with the dark core.  New pulpwood, whether pine or hardwood, should be more tan/yellowish, not light brown.  I like the real bark but what you see in the pic is an entire 5-ft Christmas tree and I simply don’t have enough material, time or interest to continue down this path.  Not only do I have 6 loads to build, I also need loose and stacked piles for the wood yard.  Also note that, after the yellow glue used to attach sticks together has dried overnight, there is considerable shrinkage (over 1/8”) and a thin stack tends to bow up.  This experiment will end up in the wood yard.

 

I’ve tried wood dowels and like that approach.  Razor-sawn sides create believable grooves, followed by reddish-brown stain (for pine), then cut to 4.5” lengths.  The saw cuts simulate a chain saw better than a NWSL Chopper on tree twigs and several dowels can be sawn into sections at a time.  I also like how the stain migrates only slightly into the dowel, thereby creating the illusion of bark with a tan core.  The problem I’m running into is finding suitable diameter dowels in bulk.  I need 1/16, 3/32 and 1/8” diameters to simulate 6-12” (ish).  Local craft stores only stock 1/16 and 3/16.  Home Depot has nothing smaller than 3/16.  Can someone recommend a source for these 3 sizes in bulk?  MicroMark sells 20-packs of 12” long pieces but I’m looking for longer pieces and in all 3 diameters.

 

Jim King

www.smokymountainmodelworks.com

 


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Jim King
www.smokymountainmodelworks.com