Since it was close to Christmas and many suppliers were on reduced hours or closed,
I decided to wait a couple weeks to order some BPRC supplies.
Just so I didn't totally neglect the layout I did a little more work on the Meat Market/Land Office building.
The building was not designed to add interior detailing but I try to build my structure to add interiors/lighting someday in the future,
if I ever feel competent to do so.
Anyway, I could not come up with a plan that I liked for making the roof removable on the building.
Since I wanted to add a wood porch to the front anyway, I decided to make a foundation/ floor for the building.
I started by building a foundation from balsa.
I designed it to try to look like the "foundation" had been extended twice,
first to add the rear part of the Land Office (left side) and then to add the shed to the rear.
I then started to add balsa floor boards that fit inside the walls to help block light leaks.
The "slot" in the floor is where the wall fits.
I had to stop on it for now as I need to solve a problem with the left side wall before I can build its floor.
In the meantime, I have added rafter ends and the battens to the shed.
I haven't designed the porch yet as I need to have a better idea of where the building will be sited first.
I had decided to remove all of the track from the layout and replace it with hand-laid track.
While I was doing that, I started really looking into BPRC and what I wanted from the hobby.
The upshot of that was that I have decided to change to BPRC and not wire the new track.
I got to this point before sanity prevailed.
Since I have decided to go "all in" on BPRC, here is my new, improved, track plan.
Major paradigm shifts have a way of letting you reflect.
I did do a little more on the building (and the Porter) between other activities.
I finished the floor.
The "empty" area is a piece of the shed that is completely sealed off, no doors or windows,
that I left open in case I decide to add self-contained lighting.
I also started to add some of the trim and battens.
I also finished disassembling the Bachmann Porter 0-4-2 that will be my first attempt at BPRC conversion.
Once I set the new layout board (currently 8 foot by 32 inch) in place,
it occurred to me that the tracks were now only going to be a suggestion to the train as to where I would like it to go.
That opens up all kinds of ideas, some pretty strange.
I thought about just putting a fence around the outer perimeter, maybe add steerable axles, and play Bumper Trains...
Hmmm, maybe I'm onto something there.
Seriously, the decision to change to BPRC has re-enthused me for the hobby.
I plan to de-clutter and simplify all aspects of the hobby.
I'm dropping out of several DCC and related forums and re-kindling my electronics genes.
Even though I don't have equipment yet, I'm committed to BPRC.
Gapping switches doesn't really bother me,
but all of the non-railroad-related electrical minutia like reverse loops, powered frogs, etc,
just cause us to design layouts based on electrical connectivity instead of something simple and railroady like
"we need to be able to spot a car over there".
On small layouts like mine it isn't really much of a concern but it does interfere with the creative process.
I don't have any creativity to spare for powered rail nonsense.