OK, the Mik is astern of us and it is on to new projects, in particular the long-foreshadowed “Rehabilitation of the Missile Sponges!” “Missile sponge” was a Cold War era U.S. Navy term for ships that were supposed to suck up incoming missiles to allow the carriers and, for a while, the battleships, to close for the kill. Here, it refers to the three locomotives to which we gave the crew and most of their friends full access, in effect, absorbing the blows so more expensive trains could pass. Battle scarred and weary, they are ready to serve again as tools to advance our capabilities as modelers.
First up for rehab, a PIKO GE 25-tonner “Clean Machine” named Diesel Dan. Notice the detail parts:
That was a joke. There are none. The family got this for Kid-zilla when he was three. His sister gave it to him to hug goodnight, we all fumbled for the on/off switch, and he chewed off the horn. For his fifth birthday, he asked for the detail parts back, and even provided a horn that came as an extra with a PLAYMOBIL set (Future kitbasher in the making!). I’ve never bent handrails before, so that will be a new skill to master. I took possession of a good collection of grab-handle-less LGB freight cars, so that is one of the reasons Diesel Dan is the next project to get underway. Also, to avoid contact with that ON/OFF switch, I ordered G-Scale Graphics “Magnetic Critter Controller” (Magnetic Critter Control (gscalegraphics.net). Someone on this forum tipped me off to this device years ago, and it intrigued me. Now I have an excuse to experiment with this control system and get better at integrating electronics into our locomotives. I offered to paint Diesel Dan to look like the full size one at the Hawaii Historical Railroad, but Kid-zilla declined. Diesel Dan will remain in stock colors and clean…for now
I know this is hardly a hard-hitting project, but I find by committing myself to the site, I commit myself to the project. I have been surprised that this little gem from PIKO has yet to appear in 'bashes on this site, so maybe this will open the door to that with “Mac-bashing,” alas, now a thing of history.