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The trials of Mr Bull

Posted by Mikkel , in Gallery, The Bay 15 November 2009 · 2,020 views

stock clerestories Bay 6-wheelers figures 517 850 gallery
Here are some progress shots from "The bay", the first of the Farthing layouts. They mainly show the platform as I still need to detail the yard behind it.

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Mr Bull waits impatiently for his train on platform 2 at Farthing station. Behind him, 517 class No. 835 rests quietly in the bay with a newly arrived stopping train. The loco is an Alan Gibson kit that I bought secondhand in a rather unusual condition, sporting NER fittings and numbering! I returned it to running order and gave it a repaint, and it now serves as a regular engine on "The bay". The first two coaches are six-wheelers built from Blacksmith kits, namely an R2 First and a T38 Center Brake Third.

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A further view of No. 835. In a somewhat hazardous gamble, the Management has decided to delay securing of the roof on the R2 until passengers are onboard. Perhaps sensing the impending disaster, the crew is nowhere to be seen.

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Throughout his life, Charles R. Dixon categorically denied being shortsighted.

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The luggage belonging to the party of Mr and Mrs Longbottom, with whom regular readers (if there are any!) will be familiar. It is a little known fact that some Edwardian women were able to hover a few inches above the ground. Must fix that!

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Sometimes I think a cameo can be more effective without people in it. This one needs a bit more work though, and I seem to have gone over the top with the highlighting on the barrow. The lamp is a standard GWR type from the old Mike's Models range. They look ok from a distance, although close-ups like this show the thickness. The working lamps from DCC concepts provide an alluring alternative for future layouts, although I have not yet checked whether they resemble true GWR types. Does anyone know?

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The branch train has taken its place in the bay, ready for its return trip to Overbourne. The 850 class No. 1961 is again from an Alan Gibson kit, and yet another restoration job. The dome and chimney are not actually sliding down the boiler side, it must be the angle of the photo! The clerestory behind it is a chopped up Triang coach now running as an all Third to Diagram C22 (although a tad too narrow for that diagram).

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Mr Bull is still waiting. His day has been bad enough already. When he discovers what he has stepped in, it will get worse.
  • Like x 4
  • Craftsmanship/Clever x 3

Hi Mikkel.Absolutely superb modelling mate.I enjoy the story you put together very well.I like you little cameos,something I'm doing too on my layout.I really like your canopies.Those station lamps you mention from DCC Concepts look promising as I've had a look myself.They are a tad pricey at ??10 per lamp but I will have a closer look at the Warley show and report back. B)
Thanks Robin, and yes please I would be very interested to hear your thoughts about the new station lamps after Warley. Wish I could go myself - am thinking of taking a trip over next year.
Nov 16 2009 10:53
What an inspiration.
Thanks Kevin.

For a micro layout this has been a rather long time underway, mostly because of other committments. But it's nice to see some results now, always very motivating. That was also part of the whole idea behind doing a series of related micro-layouts in the first place, ie getting something completed at regular intervals to keep the motivation going.
Nov 16 2009 23:43
You are going to have to be less dismissive of your talent, Mikkel; you've got the knack of composing an evocative scene, and I reckon The Bay looks fantastic.

Yes, carefully composed cameos are very effective without figures. The suggestion of human activity is all that's needed to bring a scene to life.
Many thanks Buckjumper. It's odd how too many figures can make a layout seem too crowded. To me, a group of more than three people can look too busy on a layout, although in real life this is very common of course.

It's as if understatement is more effective - ie a group of three figures is enough to suggest a crowd. Modelling has a lot to do with indicating things I guess, triggering recollections in our mind and making us subconsciously draw lines between the dots? Oooh, doesn't that sound fancy! Posted Image

Mikkel...great layout and blog....I really love the Edwardian period of your layout..very very atmospheric :icon_clap: :icon_clap: .
Its funny, I've been following the GWR website for about 7 years I guess...but only just found the Farthing Layouts blog...i feel like I've come full circle...I'll be following it very closely from now on :D

Hello Gene. Thankyou, it's nice to meet someone from the GWR website Posted Image. One of the things that site lacked was a way of interacting between visitors. But fortunately we have that here!

excellent workmanship, A very interesting idea of several micros of one location. I assume that as you have commented that they do not connect, that the making is more of an interest than the running of trains?

I will be watching your inspirational "depot" concept take shape !
Many thanks John. I do try to add some operational interest to these micros. I tend to draw heavily on the fiddle yards for that, although making sure that the layout itself is a key part of the operational procedures. Having said that, I do sometimes wish I could let the locos stretch their legs a bit on a longer run!

Welcome to Farthing!

Attached Image: farthing2.jpg


This blog chronicles the building of "The Farthing layouts", a series of small OO layouts that portray different sections of a GWR junction station in Edwardian days.


Intro and concept
How to eat an elephant
Design principles
State of play


Gallery (1900-1904)
Four o'clock blues, ca. 1902
What really happened in the Cuban...
The honourable slipper boy (Part 1)
The honourable slipper boy (Part 2)
The honourable slipper boy (Part 3)


Gallery (1904-08)
The trials of Mr Bull
A most implausible arrival
A parcel for Mr Ahern
Blue skies and horse traffic
The Remains of the Day
Motley crew

Edwardian daydreams


Gallery (1914)
All in a day's work, Part 1
All in a day's work, Part 2
All in a day's work, Part 3
All in a day's work, Part 4


Out of period
Undecided sky (1867)
The sleeping giant (1887)
Bunker first (1927)
Fitted fish and piles (1947)


Once Upon a Time in the West
Summer silliness
The unbearable lightness...
Across the years
The Sidelight Job
Painting coach panels

Traverser testing


Low-tech pre-grouping stock

Short trains for short layouts
Short trains with a twist
Hand-me-down coaches
Low-tech coach restoration (1)
Low-tech coach restoration (2)
Low-tech coach restoration (3)
Low-tech coach restoration (4)
Low-tech coach restoration (5)


Sprat & Winkle couplings
3 plank Open in GWR red
Outside Framed 8 Ton Van

In the red: GWR 1900s wagon liveries
In loving memory...
Scratchbuilt one-planker (1)
Scratchbuilt one-planker (2)
MSWJR 3-plank dropside
LSWR 10 ton sliding door van
SDJR Road Van
LSWR stone wagon
Fake news and wagon sheets
Same but different: 1900s wagons


GWR 1854 Saddle Tank (1)
GWR 1854 Saddle Tank (2)
Shiny domes and safety valve covers
Backdating the Oxford Dean Goods (1)


C+L underlay and Carr's ballast
Experiments with C+L track
Comparing track
Messing about with track panels
Laying track on "The depot"


GWR horse-drawn trolley
GWR 5-ton horse-drawn vehicle
Parcels van and coal trolley


Fun with crates
Barrels, baskets, bales
Small crates and tea chests


Andrew Stadden 4mm figures
Backdated Monty's figures
Footplate crew
HO figures for an OO layout
Lesser known whitemetal figures


Building "The branch bay"
First bite: "The bay"
Simple structures for "The bay"
Platform trolleys and barrows
Signs, posters and adverts
Six lessons learnt


Building "The goods depot"
Second bite: "The depot"
Shunting Puzzle
Sketches of The depot
Soft body, hard shell
Kit-bashed roof structure
Dry Run
Dusting off the cobwebs
Playing with mirrors
Mezzanine floor
Progress on "The depot"
4mm slate roofing
The treachery of images

A roof for "The depot"

A tall bird from Paddington
Cranes for the depot
Shoulders of giants
Flight of the bumblebee


Building "The sidings"
Third bite: "The sidings"
Wagon propulsion
Progress on "The sidings"
Rising from slumber
The Biscuit Shed
A shed and a lock-up
Agricultural merchant's warehouse
Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall


Building "The stables"
GWR Park Royal stable block
GWR stables - an overview


Railway modelling and Art
Moving Pictures
Season's greetings


Layout ideas
A flexible layout
Kicking back in Gloucester


Pre-grouping livery clippings
Journey to Didcot
Detail hunting at Didcot
Here's looking at you
The mists of time (and all that)
My friend the operating chair
Ready-to-plonk freight
GWR Modelling website


RMweb Workbench
Flickr photostream

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