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  1. On September 29th, 1973, a new School house ROCK (link to wiki page for those unfamiliar with what that is) music video was played for the first time alongside your regular American Saturday morning cartoons such as Scooby-Doo, old Rocky and Bullwinkle show episodes and maybe some Johnny Quest. This new music video featured a diminutive stereotypical train conductor, two hobos (one fat and tall, and one small and skinny), and a train with words on it... not just any words, but CONJUNCTIONS, as the name of the video and location is Conjunction Junction. This train is shown below, with comments about what it could possibly be carrying in the fictional ROCK-verse. The first two (NOT + THIS) are obviously Boxcars. The BUT tanker (most likely hauling Butane) and THAT boxcar. Finally, AND (which is possibly a refrigerated goods wagon) plus an OR (ore) hopper. Oddly, there was no locomotive mentioned or seen in the video.... thus, I have not included one here. (However, since it skews American in car styling, I'll be using a steam loco for this of that origin.) The green caboose is my own custom addition, with my sig-fig hanging on for dear life! All together, these train cars taught (and entertained!) generations of school-age children and some older adults about Conjunctions, and other videos taught about American history, the environment, math (multiplication tables up to 12 but skipping the number 1), science, money and even early home computers! (among MANY other subjects) All of them can be found on Disney +, as Disney owns ABC, which is who made the original music videos, and the newer ones up to 2009. However, what's a freight train without someone or somewhere to tell it where to go next? Enter the railyard dispatch center, which is not just any old building: it's the Conjunction Junction dispatch office as seen in the education cartoon series Schoolhouse Rock "Conjunction Junction" episode from September '73. The sign on the roof of the building should say "Conjunction Jct.", just as it did in the show... except I'm (still) missing three printed 1 x 1 letters to make the sign work. I've made some changes to the original cartoon design, such as adding a removable roof to the building (for getting access to the inside details), and placing a water tower nearby for thirsty steam locomotives. The tower top rotates a full 360 degrees with the water pipe, allowing the engineer to pull up, get his loco full of (imaginary) water, shove the pipe away, and move on. Also, there is a dilapidated boxcar behind the water tower for the Junction's two resident hobos. Inside the openable building is a typical furniture for the 1930-'50's time period which I think the cartoon takes place in. This includes: - corner desk with telephone, a railroad oil can, and lantern, plus two chairs - oil fired heater / stove - time clock next to a day-at-a-time calendar showcasing a exotic locale - potted plant, just because! So, what's YOUR function? EDIT 9/24/21: added final pictures of the office. MOC is now finished!
  2. This loco is basically an updated 2017 version of the Railbricks Fairbanks Morse H10-44 engine that was built by Jeramy Spurgeon back in 2007 for the Hobby train set number 10183. (It didn't make it into the final set but was considered for it) I was also inspired by this topic here on Eurobricks by user dx0. I wanted to make it in orange like his model, but decided on yellow after looking at the Technic 1 x 4 brick, which doesn't come in that color. The elongated model features a new slope brick that actually very closely mirrors the real loco, along with space for railways initial tiles and printed numbers. I am going to name this loco WFP number 7004. (WFP stands for Wabash Frisco & Pacific, which is the name of a 12 inch gauge ride-on railway in St. Louis, MO. They really have a Fairbanks Morse-like loco there numbered 704, so this engine is partially inspired by that!) The rear of the loco features the cab door and the tail-light. The LDD file is available here if anyone wants it. (UPDATE: I revised the underside of the engine to be beefier, along with a bunch of other small modifications. The LDD file and pictures are updated as of 1/24/17. Comments, questions and complaints are always welcome!
  3. Hey! I just worked up my first Lego layout with Blue Brick, and I was hoping to get some comments and suggestions from some of you. I have a little free time on my hands here presently while we move back to the U.S., so I'm trying to use the time constructively. I'm not real sure of the exact dimensions of the space we'll have, but this layout should more-or-less fit into a medium-sized home's basement, don't you think? What do you think of the size of the layout, does it look too big or small? I think it strikes a good balance between being a decent-sized layout that's big enough to hold what I've got (plus a little room for expansion) without being grounds for divorce. Our son is only three, so I've tried to keep it as accessible as possible from all angles. I'm thinking of making the tables modular, so I can always add in another table in the future when/if we run out of room with this design. I mostly used the 3" x 3" tables in Blue Brick (and added on 1" x 3" tables for the harbor which was something of an afterthought). The table size isn't set into stone. One of my main questions is about the two crossovers between the two main lines. Is there a prettier way to do it? Do I need to get my hacksaw out and cut the switches they presently sell? I'm using PF track so I won't be using the 9V switch tracks with the shorter diverging track, unfortunately. Also, I won't be spending the crazy money that 7996 (Train Rail Crossing) is getting. It's a pity that Lego doesn't sell 7996 any longer as it's a very elegant solution, and I'm also more than a little bummed about the way they package the road baseplates. I won't be purchasing them unfortunately. Guess I'll have to find the time to build my own. Ok, well, thanks in advance for your input. Feel free to post graphics of your layout in this thread as I'd love to see what others have come up with. Oh, for the record; this is the parts list: 4x Right Switches 9x Left Switches 192x Straight Track 43x Curve Track 60x 48x48 Grey Baseplates 13x 32x32 Blue Baseplates and a handful of Flex-track Joe