Monday, March 18, 2013

Green Mountain Paper - Part 1

After two weeks of feeling lousy I finally ventured back into the layout room on Friday evening and turned my attention towards the Green Mountain Paper Co. complex. 
This is the largest single customer on my model railroad. Although it isn’t based on any one particular prototype, it's inspired by the mills at Montville, Conn., on the CV and the Gilman Mill along the Maine Central’s former Mountain Division. 
There are three primary structures in the Green Mountain Paper complex – the “old warehouse” which is now the pulp and dry chemical receiving area, the chemical track, where tank car loads of chemicals are delivered, and the “new” warehouse. Throughout the complex there will be an assortment of smaller buildings, tanks, catwalks and the like. 
We’ll start with the “old warehouse.”
Inbound “Pulp” Warehouse
I theorize this was originally the outbound warehouse for the first large paper company on this site. During the war, demand for the plant’s production meant a new brick curtain warehouse was constructed. At the same time the pulpwood operation here was shut down, and the facility became a non-integrated mill, meaning it started with pulp that had been processed at another mill. So, the old warehouse became the new pulp warehouse where market pulp was received, stored, and processed. 
I wanted a building that was obviously older, perhaps a little more weathered. I also wanted to add some additional texture in the form of ventilation systems that were obviously added onto the original building. 
The basic structure is made up of a number of Walthers brick Modular walls. I had an earlier version of this building I’d started for a previous layout that I disassembled and rearranged slightly. 
Basically, each piece is a one-story section of a brick building which the modeler can stack to create taller buildings with an almost infinite arrangement of windows and doors. After I determined what I thought was a good arrangement of the components I cleaned up any flash on the sides of the parts and glued them together. The resulting structure is about 26 inches long, with four freight doors on the side for spotting cars. 
I painted the entire building with a base brick red color using craft store barn red paint. Despite my best efforts, the horizontal seam between the first and second floors was too visible on the red building. I knew I’d be hiding some of it with all that extra piping and machinery I planned to add to the walls, but in an effort to really minimize the seams I painted a black band along the length of the building between the top of the first floor doors and the bottom of the second floor windows. Then I added white decal letters to spell out “Vermont Paper Co.”, the name of the original paper mill owner. 
The building isn't finished yet. The lettering is still too stark, and I need to work on fading it even more.   
I also still need to add the vents and piping to this building, and I might add some vine-covered walls in a few spots to really add a sense of age to this building. 
But I wanted to show that I was, at last, making some progress! The next step is to construct the "new" warehouse building, which will be between the track and silver water tank in the photo below. 

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