4. Approaching Burnout

From the storage unit I collected a bare minimum of tools and such: one X-Acto knife, a ruler, tweezers, a few nail files, various glues and solvents, several brushes, and about a dozen bottles of paint. I also grabbed a soldering iron and my trusty little micro-table saw, which I must use sparingly as I was living off-grid. A small cutting mat just barely fit on my lone table—alternating with my computer keyboard as necessary—while the layout occupied half of my bed. (Yes, I'd been sleeping with my layout; let the jokes commence.) I made frequent trips to the storage unit to retrieve and return boxes of kits, kit parts and other supplies. It was quite the logistics exercise.

As the layout progressed, I "abandoned" more and more of it, until abandonment overtook the majority of structures and scenes: urban blight became the visual theme. About a month into the project, I awoke one morning with a strange new perspective. I'd felt the yet-to-be-named layout bore some resemblance to the ill-fated Penn Central; why not just make it the Penn Central? As a bonus, I could utilize stock PC merchandise from my collection. When I struck upon the idea of switching to the PC, the visual theme seemed even more right, since the setting shared the same "doom and gloom" overtones as the railroad itself. This is not to say I have anything against the PC; I neither like it nor dislike it. It is what it is.

After a couple of months of kitbashing, the layout looked like this:

1. Haber Manufacturing — revised
2. Stephen A. Greene Furniture — revised
3. The Weller Company — removed
4. Tanna Hill Apartments South — removed
5. Tomb of the Unknown — revised
6. The Coal Trestle
7. Downtown Southwest Stockton — revised
8. Rearden Metal Fabrication — revised
9. Dick's Welding — removed
10. Dave's Auto Repair — finished
11. Central Fuel Oil — removed
12. Stockton Station — revised
13. Stock Tower — finished

Then in April 2017 I reached the inevitable burnout point, and put the layout into storage, confident that I'd return to it once again at some unknown point in the future.

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