"Howdy Folks! Welcome to the little mining town of Rainbow Ridge, the gateway to Nature's Wonderland"

This is my documentation of my miniature re-creation of the long-gone Disneyland attraction: Mine Train Thru Nature's Wonderland. This is a selectively compressed model railroad, in On30 scale at 5' X 7.5' that has been in progress since 2005; even after almost 10 years of work, it's still not finished.

I started the layout when I was a sophomore in high school with basic skills and over the years the layout has been improved and reworked in drastic ways to match my ever improving model making skills. In fact, since I started rebuilding the sections to better quality and standards, I've actually created a whole new layout, piece by piece.

This is a stand-by basis project without a deadline, so it tends to hit the back-burner a lot due to other things with higher priorities. But whenever I can, I'll give an update when there is something worth talking about. All of my updates since day one are here, which include photos, videos, and plenty of rambling notes and descriptions.




Progress Report: 6/18/08

Here is the "new" N.W.R.R. #1, fresh out of the shop. It still needs some more work, like the sand dome details, steam dome in the cab, and the whistle/cord.





Heres what I did to get rid of that pesky saddle tank that is driving everyone that has this Bachmann model crazy:

I took off the saddle tank (duh!). I then made a new smokebox front that was bigger than diameter than the original, and then I glued it right on to the original smokebox. Next, I grinded off the metal strips on both sides of the motor that support the saddle tank, this created a more narrow boiler. Then I wrapped a piece of thin styrene around the motor and glued it to the grinded down strips to create the new boiler. Lastly, I added all the details (Smokestack, sand dome, bell, new headlight, sandpipes, injector pipes). You will need to construct a new cab, or modify the current one, if you want it to fit around the new boiler. In this case I just made the area in the current cab that fits around the boiler a bit bigger. The engine does lose some traction power with out the weight of the saddle tank, but this little porter isn't pulling any long freight trains either, so that was OK.





Here is the first finished area of the layout, a new river of "Mod Podge" has been made, lined with rocks, and tall grass made from fake fur.





After reviewing some drawings of the prototype train, I discovered that I made my cars and tender too big! Even after three generations of mine cars on my layout I didn't catch that! So a new fleet of Mark IV mine cars are planned, which will be smaller leaving more room, so a full six or seven car train is possible
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Progress Report: 6/16/08

Here is the new trestle in Bear Country, with NWRR number one pausing on it. For those of you wondering what the On30 0-4-0 Porter looks like on the inside, there you go. The engine is currently under going a major rebuild that will make it more accurate to the prototype, and that includes getting rid of the saddle tank.





Heres a look inside the Rainbow Caverns, it is nearly complete, the water features need a coat of Mod Podge (which is what I now use for water). The more I look at it now, I think I may need to restrict the color palette to just cool colors, especially on the stalagmites/stalactites, They seem a little distracting.






Long exposure shot with the train passing by.