OK...after seeing so many good looking crossings on various layouts posted right here on this forum, I thought I'd try my hand at making a rural crossing from vinyl joint compound. Here's the results and as always open to critique. The compound was a bit too heavy and slightly too dry when it went on and cracked when drying. Although from a distance, the cracking looks pretty good and somewhat like repaving attempts by highway maintenance. I covered the whole thing with three coats of india ink and water mixture. The wooden strips between the tracks (I'm sure they have a proper name - but I can't think of it now) are wooden coffee stirs, cut to size then split in half, glued in place and colored. The drainage pipe was a simple plastic straw. So far, the wooden stirs do not affect car or engine performance, although I did notice that they slowed down an 85' passenger car slightly so I'll have to trim them at the ends. Atlas truck, Kato SD70, Blair track sign plastic sheet cut to size then glued to stick. I was trying hard to get the right looking grade up to and across the tracks. It needs more scenery - mostly roadside weeds and grass - but I wanted a clear shot without covering anything up with "greenery" for everyone to see before really trying to add some small rocks/grass/etc near the roadside. (I'm hoping this works because I have another two that are drying now and will need sanding and painting tomorrow. So if anyone has ideas to improve this look - I'm ready to read them. This crossing is at the far side of the layout...the other two are front-row-center.) The pictures were taken with a halogen light and at very close range so some of the small imperfections are not very disernable to the eye when you're looking at the "big" picture sitting at the layout.