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Cromford Wharf Shunting layout - structures and scenery

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#1 Alister_G

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:01

Hello!

 

Well this is an idea that's been bubbling in the back of my mind for some time, but recently became much closer to reality.

 

This little beasty came up on ebay, and I was unable to resist, so I bought it!

 

Cromford-J94002.jpg

 

The relevance of this will soon be apparent!

 

A bit of background:

 

I've currently got two layouts on the go, Bakewell, which is substantially complete, but needs lots of details adding, and Grindleford, which is in the process of being built at the moment.

 

However, I'm not able to actually run trains on either at the moment - Bakewell because it's buried under Grindleford, and Grindleford because it's not complete enough yet. Past followers will know I have run trains on the two boards of Grindleford which are so far built, but I've had to dismantle those to work on the next section. I don't have enough room in the house to put up Grindleford on its own.

 

All this is a long winded way of saying, I wanted to build a small shunting plank, which is small enough to leave up and play on when I want to, without stopping me building anything else. I'm aiming for something about 6 to 8 feet by 2 feet in total size.

 

But, as you know, I like building real railways, not just made up ones, so the shunting plank would have to be based on a real railway somewhere, and I like scenery and buildings, so it would have to have some of that as well. As you also know, I like to model railways in the Peak District, as that is where I live.

 

So to cut a long story short, I've been thinking about modelling some part of the Cromford and High Peak Railway, but finding a bit of that to work as a shunting plank is a challenge as it's mostly single track and a few sidings, which is a bit boring.

 

So looking for likely places, I came across the area at the Cromford end of the line where the Sheep's Pasture incline drops down to meet the Cromford Canal. There are a number of sidings here, and an engine shed, and some workshops, and this is the location where wagons from the main line were sorted and stored before being sent up the incline and onward to the rest of the CHPR, and where wagons coming down the incline were sorted into trains to go out onto the main Derby to Manchester line.

 

Here's the location as it appears now on Google Maps, rotated to show how I would present the layout:

 

Cromford-Google-crop.jpg

 

As you can see, it's heavily overgrown now, but originally it would have been more open.

 

Bearing that in mind, here's a suggested track plan:

 

Cromford-scenery.jpg

 

And here's a few photos of what it looked like at various times:

 

Cromford-Bottom001.jpg

The bottom of the incline

 

You see now why buying the J94 prompted me to get on with this!

 

Cromford-Bottom003.jpg

The workshops

 

 

Cromford-Bottom002.jpg

The engine shed

 

 

This whole area is now a tourist attraction, now called High Peak Junction, although actually the real High Peak Junction, where the CHPR and the main line joined, is a couple of miles away, and originally this area was known as Cromford Bottom or Cromford Wharf - hence the thread title.

 

The layout (shunting plank!) will be built to 00 and in Code75 rail, probably using Peco Streamline small points for compactness. I will build it so that it may, in the future be possible to exhibit it without too much fuss.

 

This is not something I will be starting straight away, as I want to get on with Grindleford's next board, so don't expect regular updates for a while, it's more just testing the water to see what people think.

 

I would welcome any thoughts, and any alternatives or amendments to the track plan above would be gratefully received, at the moment it takes up about 8 feet of length, so if it could be shortened that would be good.

 

Thanks for looking,

 

Al.


Edited by acg_mr, 18 June 2017 - 20:06 .

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#2 Andrew P

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:19

Love this one mate, will it go on top of Grindleford  which is on top of Bakewell?

 

3 story Layouts, WOW. :no:


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#3 Scottish Modeller

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:34

Hello!

 

Well this is an idea that's been bubbling in the back of my mind for some time, but recently became much closer to reality.

 

This little beasty came up on ebay, and I was unable to resist, so I bought it!

 

attachicon.gifCromford-J94002.jpg

 

Thanks for looking,

 

Al.

Hi Al,

 

Is that the one that went for just under £30.00?

 

I was watching and holding on for a last minute bid - then t'internet went down on me and I missed it!

 

Thanks


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#4 Dava

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:37

I'd have thought you could shorten it to around 6 feet in 00?

Dava
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#5 Alister_G

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:43

Hi Al,

 

Is that the one that went for just under £30.00?

 

I was watching and holding on for a last minute bid - then t'internet went down on me and I missed it!

 

Thanks

 

Hi Phil, no it was a bit more than that, didn't see that one, dang it!

 

Cheers,

 

Al.



#6 Alister_G

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:45

Love this one mate, will it go on top of Grindleford  which is on top of Bakewell?

 

3 story Layouts, WOW. :no:

 

Cheers Andy,

 

I don't think there's room under the ceiling to fit three layers :D

 

I'm hoping this will be small enough to be left up, possibly in a bedroom... Negotiations are continuing!

 

Al.


Edited by acg_mr, 07 April 2017 - 22:33 .

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#7 Scottish Modeller

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:47

Hi Phil, no it was a bit more than that, didn't see that one, dang it!

 

Cheers,

 

Al.

Hi Al,

 

You need to remember that not all model railway stuff is in the Model Railways section!

 

The one I missed was in the Toys under other or some similar description.

 

Thanks


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#8 Andrew P

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:48

 

Cheers Andy,

 

I don't thing there's room under the ceiling to fit three layers :D

 

I'm hoping this will be small enough to be left up, possibly in a bedroom... Negotiations are continuing!

 

Al.

 

 

BRAVE,       :o      VERY BRAVE. :no:  :no:  :stinker:



#9 Alister_G

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:49

I'd have thought you could shorten it to around 6 feet in 00?

Dava

 

Well I thought that, originally, but fitting all the points in makes it longer than I thought it would be.

 

I could perhaps shorten the sidings a bit, but I don't want to compress it too much. It will be one engine in steam, and only a few wagons, so that should be doable.

 

As I said, any offers of alternatives would be gratefully received!

 

Cheers,

 

Al.


 

BRAVE,       :o      VERY BRAVE. :no:  :no:  :stinker:

 

Shh, she might not notice...

 

:D :D

 

Al.



#10 Andrew P

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 21:51

Well I thought that, originally, but fitting all the points in makes it longer than I thought it would be.

 

I could perhaps shorten the sidings a bit, but I don't want to compress it too much. It will be one engine in steam, and only a few wagons, so that should be doable.

 

As I said, any offers of alternatives would be gratefully received!

 

Cheers,

 

Al.


 

Shh, she might not notice...

 

:D :D

 

Al.

How about a fold over Fiddle Yard as I did on West Shed and Porth Merryn, 6ft to go in the Car and 7ft once folded out.


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#11 Alister_G

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 22:10

How about a fold over Fiddle Yard as I did on West Shed and Porth Merryn, 6ft to go in the Car and 7ft once folded out.

 

At which end Andy?

 

I was sort of thinking of the plan above as the scenic section, with a traverser added on at the left end:

 

Cromford-track-plan001.jpg

 

like this:

 

Cromford-track-plan-fiddle.jpg

 

What do you think?

 

Edit:

 

I also wondered about running a link from the top of the incline back to the traverser behind the backscene, like this:

 

Cromford-track-plan-fiddle02.jpg

 

But that starts to make things complicated, and makes the boards larger.

 

I'm trying to keep it as small and simple as possible.

 

Al


Edited by acg_mr, 07 April 2017 - 22:16 .

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#12 vulcan product fan

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 08:15

Great all will follow with interest Al .I really like the austerity saddle tank engines like yours dad tells me they were 2 in the pit yard at grassmoor pit were my dad did his face training in his teenage years called jane and jubilee lookin forward to more .



#13 Alister_G

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 13:55

I've been trying to fit an Anyrail track plan over the top of the Google aerial view of the site, and I've realised how incredibly tight the space is.

 

In order to get the sidings into the allowed area, I've had to use Settrack points in places, and Radius 1 curves.

 

Here's the result:

Cromford-Anyrail-overlay1.jpg

 

and this is the Anyrail plan:

 

track-overlay4.png

 

The squares on the grid are a foot apart, so you can see that with the tight curves, this now fits into a 6" length and 3" depth.

 

I still can't quite believe how much the site is curved, but the proof is in the top image, and even then, the bottom siding on the left is actually in the canal at the moment. :o

 

However, It is buildable as it stands, and it fits the dimensions I was hoping for, so I'm fairly happy with that.

 

There's a lot of curved points in there, so I'll have to start buying some.

 

I found a couple of photos on the web which show just how close to the canal the rails were, this was taken roughly in the middle of the plan above:

 

Cromford-canal-side.jpg

 

and this roughly the same position but from the top side of the rails, shows how close to the buildings the tracks were:

 

Cromford-Bottom006.jpg

Copyright John Evans

 

Thanks for looking,

 

Al.


Edited by acg_mr, 11 April 2017 - 18:36 .

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#14 emt_911

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 19:16

Looking forward to another masterpiece Al


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#15 Andrew P

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 19:27

At which end Andy?

 

I was sort of thinking of the plan above as the scenic section, with a traverser added on at the left end:

 

attachicon.gifCromford-track-plan001.jpg

 

like this:

 

attachicon.gifCromford-track-plan-fiddle.jpg

 

What do you think?

 

Edit:

 

I also wondered about running a link from the top of the incline back to the traverser behind the backscene, like this:

 

attachicon.gifCromford-track-plan-fiddle02.jpg

 

But that starts to make things complicated, and makes the boards larger.

 

I'm trying to keep it as small and simple as possible.

 

Al

It was the Fiddle Yard Al.


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#16 MarshLane

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 19:28

Hi Al,

Nice plan - and a couple of photos of the workshop area there that I've not seen before. Im using the Workshop building, that still stands today, as the basis for the workshop building on my O Gauge Arksey layout, a couple of minor tweaks needed to make everything fit, but its a lovely example of its era.

 

Looking forward to watching your progress with the layout as a whole.

 

Rich


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#17 Gordon A

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 20:39

If you built your own pointwork you would be able ton design better flowing track work.

 

Gordon A


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#18 Alister_G

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 23:01

Hi Al,

Nice plan - and a couple of photos of the workshop area there that I've not seen before. Im using the Workshop building, that still stands today, as the basis for the workshop building on my O Gauge Arksey layout, a couple of minor tweaks needed to make everything fit, but its a lovely example of its era.

 

Looking forward to watching your progress with the layout as a whole.

 

Rich

 

Hi Rich,

 

Thanks very much for dropping by.

 

It hadn't really clicked that you'd based your workshops on Arksey around High Peak Junction, but looking again, and especially looking at Brian's artist's impression, the ancestry is clear.

 

Please feel free to copy the images if they are helpful to you.

 

Cheers,

 

Al.



#19 mike morley

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 06:10

I have just retired a layout with a hidden return line to a fiddle yard at one end, like you are proposing, and decided quite early on in the life of the layout that it is something I would neither repeat or recommend.

The problem is access to it for things as basic as track cleaning or dealing with derailments.   Mine was an exhibition layout, operated from behind, yet it was still awkward enough to be a nuisance (It was one of the reasons why the layout was retired after an extremely short life of just four shows).  For a home layout, presumably operated from in front, things would be immeasurably worse.  Don't do it!


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#20 Alister_G

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 07:29

I have just retired a layout with a hidden return line to a fiddle yard at one end, like you are proposing, and decided quite early on in the life of the layout that it is something I would neither repeat or recommend.

The problem is access to it for things as basic as track cleaning or dealing with derailments.   Mine was an exhibition layout, operated from behind, yet it was still awkward enough to be a nuisance (It was one of the reasons why the layout was retired after an extremely short life of just four shows).  For a home layout, presumably operated from in front, things would be immeasurably worse.  Don't do it!

 

Thanks very much Mike, duly noted!

 

If I go with the revised plan as above I don't think it would have been a viable proposition anyway, due to the curves involved, but thanks for confirming what I was thinking.

 

Cheers

 

Al


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#21 Enterprisingwestern

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 07:33

If you built your own pointwork you would be able ton design better flowing track work.

 

Gordon A

 

My thoughts exactly, and whilst you're at it, try dipping a toe in the water of one of the finer scales?

 

Mike.



#22 Alister_G

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 09:37

If you built your own pointwork you would be able ton design better flowing track work.

 

Gordon A

 

 

My thoughts exactly, and whilst you're at it, try dipping a toe in the water of one of the finer scales?

 

Mike.

 

Gordon, Mike,

 

Thanks very much for your thoughts.

 

I have, in the past, had a go at building turnouts, using copper sleepers and C & L rail, and it was not a success, I really struggled, despite having all the right gauges etc, and lots of helpful advice.

 

At the end of the day, this layout was envisaged as a quick build so that I have something I can run stock on, whilst I concentrate on building Grindleford. I therefore don't want to spend much time on it.

 

For similar reasons I want to be able to use existing stock which will also be run on Bakewell and Grindleford, so I won't be re-gauging to EM or P4.

 

I will however be using C & L flexi track, and Code75 pointwork, so it won't look quite so bad as code 100.

 

Many thanks to you both,

 

Al.


Edited by acg_mr, 09 April 2017 - 09:38 .

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#23 Bogie

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 09:52

Love the photo with the swan.

 

How are you at modelling swans?


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#24 MarshLane

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 11:34

Hi Rich,

 

Thanks very much for dropping by.

 

It hadn't really clicked that you'd based your workshops on Arksey around High Peak Junction, but looking again, and especially looking at Brian's artist's impression, the ancestry is clear.

 

Please feel free to copy the images if they are helpful to you.

 

Cheers,

 

Al.

 

 

Hi Al,

Thanks - I may well do that if you don't mind!  Its a lovely building - hoping to pop over next week and do some close up detail shots of the building, so I'll share them on here when I do, if they help (or if you want hires images), use them with pleasure and feel free to shout!

 

I would agree with the handbuilt pointwork, and having just started building my own Im enjoying it, but its one of those what works for one doesn't for another, and personally Im not sure I'd want to build them in OO, but thats just me!!  However, as you've said its a quickie so to speak to get some stock running, so go with what works for you!  As ever Rule #1 applies.

 

Rich



#25 Gordon A

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 12:51

Code 75 plus C&L track is a definite improvement over Peco code 100!

 

I hope you go for it. It is a fascinating area with a lot going for it, especially if you have room for the canal.

A County series OS map would be very helpful as a planning aid.

 

I like the idea of a run round behind the back scene, providing it is open topped and accessible. I have fitted one to Horselunges, but quickly made it two tracks, one for each direction of travel.

Just one track will quickly become a bottle neck.

How will you over come the difference of heights? I am thinking short cassettes that will comfortable take the maximum number of wagons that were winched up the incline at any one time, possible 3 or 4.

 

Gordon


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