Procrastination - February and March 2014

You may have noticed that posts here have become rather thin on the ground. I’m definitely having something of a lull in my work on the railroad. I haven’t really worked on the main layout in over a year (the last was work on the Hilltop scene, which is still half-done because I ran into some design problems I needed to think through). I’d been focused on working on the One Point Five Meter Line layout last fall, and that stalled out.

There are several reasons for that, but one of the big ones is that I got hung up on painting the main station before I did the track work, and doing the track work before I did any scenery (which is a good idea, generally). And around December I realized that I wasn’t going to be able to paint indoors using an airbrush as hoped, because the only places I could reasonably set up the spray booth were too close to gas appliances to be safe: the thinner I’d use is flammable, and not something I’d want to use near open flame. So I’m not doing any painting until it warms up outside, which is probably still a month away.

At that point I tried to distract myself with electronics and investigating DC motors, which kept me amused up until about mid-February, when I lost interest in that. I’d finished the interesting stuff, and just had a bunch of tests to do to compare motors, and couldn’t really work up any excitement there. I spent the last couple of weeks telling myself I’d do the tests “tomorrow” and write up a post, and of course I didn’t.

And at this point, work and other real-world stuff look likely to distract me for the next week or two, so I’m not getting to anything soon. I am going to try to get something together next week on some topic, just to get my hand back in. But I think it will be early April before much happens. Maybe by then I can paint the station building and actually start writing some meaningful posts. I have all these great ideas for things I want to do with the layout; I just seem to be hung up on getting started.

My goal remains to get the new layout operational by summer. And there really isn’t that much to it: several buildings to paint and detail, some relatively simple scenery, some roads to make (I want to try out a couple of new techniques for that) and a bunch of electronics (the control system I’d been working on until last October needs to be finished, and wiring signals and IR detectors should be interesting). Realistically, if I can get back into the swing of working on the layout a couple of nights a week, finishing it will be relatively easy.

But the last month has generally gone to procrastination with nothing much to show for it, and I expect the next couple of weeks won’t see much activity either. Procrastination; it’s a lifestyle.