Category: Thunder Mesa Blog

TML Podcast Episode 3: William Tyson

Join me for a fun and candid conversation with retired Disney Imagineer, William Tyson! From Epcot World Showcase, to Disneyland Paris, Animal Kingdom, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and just about every Disney Park in-between, William has some amazing stories to tell from a 37 year career with WDI. Listen in on how the magic was made real working with some of the very best in the business!

A Fireworks Wagon for Thunder Mesa

 

Come along as I build an O scale Fireworks Wagon based on artwork from Disneyland! Using kitbashed parts and cg texture/printed paper modeling techniques, I build a 19th century fireworks wagon to compliment Thunder Mesa's digitally projected fireworks show. I hope you enjoy this step-by-step "how to." Patreon subscribers can download the custom artwork created for this project.

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

Calico Mountain Expansion Part 3: Going Vertical

 

Time for episode 3 in the Calico Mountain Expansion how-to series! In this one, construction goes vertical with the addition of an upper deck for the On18 line. I'll take you step by step through the carpentry and tools I used to get this project off the ground floor. Don't forget to subscribe and hit that notification bell so you don't miss a single episode.

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

A Visit to Olson & Furlow’s Place

 

Let's pay a visit to Olson & Furlow's place, my scratchbuilt structure inspired by the modeling of John Olson and Malcolm Furlow. We'll take a look back at how the building was originally assembled, then retrofit the interior with new details and LED lighting. Should be fun!

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

Building a Miniature Trebuchet

And now for something completely different! Join me as I venture beyond the world of Thunder Mesa in this first of a series of new maker videos that exploring other genres and creative pursuits that catch my fancy. For this first project, I'm building a Medieval trebuchet! These massive 12th century siege engines were the super weapons of their day, and I had a complete blast building this one in 1/4" scale. Watch over my shoulder as I hit the workbench and describe the build step-by-step from start to finish.

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

Anatomy of a Trebuchet

TML Podcast Episode 2: Ray Spencer

Welcome to Episode 2 of the Thunder Mesa Limited Podcast and my chat with former Disney Imagineer Ray Spencer! Ray is a well respected creative professional with over 20 years at Walt Disney Imagineering. As an Executive Creative Director, he oversaw numerous projects for Disney Parks around the globe, as well as the designs of attractions, hotels, shops, and restaurants. Like so many Disney folks, Ray is an avid rail-fan who enjoys sharing that passion with others. Listen in as we talk about his time with Disney, the many projects he has had a hand in bringing to life, how he got into the themed entertainment business and so much more. Enjoy!

Point to Point Operations on the Thunder Mesa Mining Co.

Howdy Folks! Recent additions to the layout now make it possible to operate the line in more realistic point-to-point fashion. Climb aboard as we take a deep dive into the fictional world of Thunder Mesa and follow a typical mail train as it makes its rounds between Los Feliz Jct and Calico. Then we'll take a look behind the backdrop at the backstage staging yard to see how trains are turned there and made ready for the next trip.

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

Calico Mountain Expansion Part 2: Roadbed, Track & Wiring

 

Welcome to the second episode in this series on building the Calico Mountain Expansion to the Thunder Mesa model railroad layout! In this episode we'll install the cork roadbed, lay On30 flextrack and turnouts, and wire everything up to run trains with DCC control - including installation of an auto-reverse unit! In future episodes, we'll get the On18 track running, begin building scenery and structures, do some backdrop painting, and so much more.

Thanks for tuning in, amigos!
Dave

TML Podcast Episode 1: Jake Johnson

Welcome to the very first episode of the Thunder Mesa Limited Podcast. Join us as we talk with former Walt Disney Imagineering Senior Dimensional Designer Jake Johnson about his time in the Disney Model Shop, riding on the movie Tombstone, building miniature sets for Robot Chicken and so much more!

2020 Year in Review

 

2020 was a tough year for many of us. Fortunately, it's always somewhere between 1890 and 1910 on the Thunder Mesa layout so I made the best of things by working on and finishing up projects both old and new. I hope you all enjoy this look back at the projects and highlights of 2020, and I can't wait to share what's coming up in 2021! Happy New Year from Thunder Mesa Studio! Dav