Update On My 3D Printed Tanktainers

I haven’t blogged about my 3D printing endeavours for a while, in fact the last time I wrote anything on this topic was back in March 2019!

At that point:

  • I’d had my first three models 3D printed by Shapeways and while I’d been pleased with the results I’d had a few design problems and been a bit disappointed by some surface quality issues.
  • I’d designed my first set of decals.
  • I’d designed a sheet of etched parts for the three models that I’d had printed.

Since then I’ve been busily working on this project and now have some promising results to share.

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Useful Website: The Intermodal Container Web Page a.k.a Matt’s Place

I don’t know why it hadn’t occurred to me before to give this website a bit of well-deserved publicity; especially as I’m often visiting to browse the galleries for inspiration or to collect data to help create 3D models of a container or swap body.

Perhaps it’s because it’s such a great resource I’d assumed everyone already knows about it but if you don’t and you have an interest in:

Then I definitely recommend checking out the galleries on the Intermodal Container Web Page run by Matt Hannes.

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Website Update

I know I haven’t made a post for a while but that’s partly because I’ve actually been busy making models, creating new (and revising old) CAD models, putting together artwork for decals and etches, having them printed/etched and developing some new techniques to over-come some of the problems I identified in this post back in 2019.

By the way, wow, that post was made in March 2019; a year, doesn’t it go by in a blink?

Anyway, I’m going to write some posts detailing some of this exciting stuff over the next couple of weeks/months so don’t give up on checking the site for updates just yet.

Terminal Combiné Chavornay SA, Switzerland

It’s been a while since I wrote a post about a modelable European intermodal yard so today I thought we could take a look at the Terminal Combiné Chavornay SA (TERCO) intermodal yard in Chavornay, Switzerland.

In lieu of any photos of the complex, here’s a satellite image of the yard and its immediate surroundings:

So far so ordinary perhaps, but this yard caught my eye because it’s indirectly connected to the Swiss national railway system by an intriguing little Swiss short-line called the Orbe-Chavornay railway.

Read on to find out more…

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Zwijndrecht & Dordrecht, The Netherlands

Following on from my post about a bridge over the Savannah River in Georgia, USA, this week I thought I’d take a look at the area another bridge; this time the giant lift-bridge between the towns of Zwijndrecht and Dordrecht in the Netherlands.

“Grote Kerk Dordrecht” by bertknot is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

In case you haven’t guessed, it’s that white, futuristic looking structure towards the rear of the picture 🙂

I’ve probably said this already in previous posts but I’m not entirely sure I’m a fan of modern Netherlands architecture, however… it’s definitely a bridge that makes a statement, it’d be a very interesting scratchbuilding project and it’s shear size means it would make it an eye-catching model on an exhibition layout.

So let’s find out a bit more about the Zwijndrecht, Dordrecht and the bridge itself…

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Bridge Over The Savannah River (Savannah, Georgia)

I first spotted this interesting bridge a few years back when Google Map exploring the railroads and industrial spurs around Savannah, Georgia.

Something about the control tower and massive counter-weight structure appealed to me and I have always thought it would make an excellent North American river crossing module and scratchbuilding project.

I’ve also wanted to do a post about it for ages…

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Grain Silos & Feed Mills In Mount Joy, Pennsylvania

The town of Mount Joy in Pennsylvania, USA has been on my must research list ever since I found this photograph of the Wenger Feed Mill:

Wenger Feed Mill by Jim Epler – Own work, CC BY 2.0, View Image

You might think that’s strange because a closer look at the picture reveals there isn’t actually any track in the picture. While that observation is true, it’s still a very interesting and attractive jumble of buildings which would make a very nice scratch-building or kit-bashing project.

I don’t have a photo to show it but the facility is still rail served, it’s just that railcars are currently loaded/unloaded on the other (north) side of the facility. However there’s no reason why we couldn’t apply a little modellers license, add some track and create the option to model tracks on both sides of the facility.

There’s also something else not visible in the photo above that makes this location somewhat rare and interesting, at least in terms of US operations…

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The Betuweroute (A European Freight-Only Railway)

The Betuweroute is a modern, freight-only railway line in the Netherlands that connects the internationally important port of Rotterdam to the Rhine-Alpine freight corridor via the town of Zevenaar near the German border.

Metrans E186 182-2 With A Prague Shuttle by Nicky Boogaard – Own Work,
CC BY 2.0View Image

Like all contemporary infrastructure projects the Betuweroute was mired in controversy about it’s cost and viability but since opening in 2007, the number of trains using the line has been rising year-on-year. ProRail (the organisation responsible for Dutch rail infrastructure) report that the line now carries over 500 freight-trains a week making it a key section of the Rhine-Alpine freight corridor.

The Betuweroute is still something of an anomaly in Europe, having been designed and constructed solely to carry freight. So if you’re looking for something unique to model, the Betuweroute could be just the thing. Combine that uniqueness with the potential to incorporate some interesting scenes, modern architecture and a wide variety of potential freight rolling stock and I think there’s scope to build some interesting modules or cameos…

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Inspirational Modelling #3 (Boulder Creek Railroad)

Luke Towan & Boulder Creek Railroad

Over the last couple of months I’ve presented a lot of locations that could be recreated as modules but I haven’t done a lot of module building myself.

I’ve started a Stadtbahn module on a Gatorboard T-Trak baseboard but it’s still very early days. So I thought it might be useful to show just what can be achieved in a small space by highlighting the amazing dioramas of Luke Towan…

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