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Overseas railways worth modelling

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#1 whart57

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 15:08

The world is a big place and the world's railways offer a huge variety for railway modellers. Such a huge variety that many interesting possibilities for layouts and other modelling opportunities are unknown to most people. This topic is to promote suggestions. I'm sure we all have more ideas for layouts than years in which to fulfil them, this is a place to share the ideas that we will never get round to fulfilling ourselves. However, given the forum, this topic should be restricted to non-British prototypes.

 

To kick this off, I suggest the narrow gauge steam tram lines of Gelderland (NL)

 

What are they?

 

These were 750mm gauge lines built at the end of the 19th century to open up the "Achterhoek", an area of Gelderland lying East of the river Ijssel between Arnhem and the German border. The lines were built by different companies but they combined after WW1 into the Gelderse Tramwegen Mij. The lines carried both passengers and freight, and towards the end freight was the more important. The last line closed in 1957.

 

Where can I find information?

 

The internet is a good place to start. Google "Doetinchem tram" or "Doesburg tram" and click "images" and a whole number of pictures of the tramways will be found. Then there are books, all in Dutch unfortunately but treat Google Translate as your friend.

 

Stoomtrams in Gelderland - H.G. Hesselink, is a small volume to get you started.

De nadagen van Neerlands Stoom en Motortrams - J, Voerman, has a major chapter on the GTM

De Stoomlocomotieven der Nederlandse Tramwegen - S. Overbosch, provides descriptions and some drawings of the locomotives used

De goederenwagens van de Nederlandse Tramwegen - A. Dijkers, has line drawings of most of the goods vans and wagons as well as sketch maps of the line through the towns of Doesburg and Doetinchem

De rijtuigen van de Nederlandse Stoomtramwegen - A Dijkers, has line drawings of the passenger carriages, including the diesel railcars used in the late 20s and early 30s

 

The Gelderland provincial archive (www.geldersarchief.nl) also has a fair number of documents but I am not sure how useful many are. Quite possibly there are track plans and drawings of buildings, there usually are in provincial archives. Local archives in Doetinchem and Zutphen might have more.

 

Locomotive No 13 "Silvolde" is preserved in the Railway museum in Utrecht

 

Why would I want to?

 

It's a narrow gauge network that offers a variety of train possibilities and more than one engine in steam operation. A famous photograph taken in 1942 shows five steam tram trains lined up ready to leave Doetinchem in quick succession. Tram trains run on reserved tracks, at the side of the road and in the middle of the street in true tram style. Locomotive types include 0-4-0T boxy tram types and both 0-6-0T and 0-8-0T end cab locos - Gelderland is relatively hilly by Dutch standards and there were some stiff climbs. Some internal combustion railcars were used as well.Scenery and architecture are generally pleasing and, for those interested in boats, transhipment of goods from river barge to goods tram was a major part of the business

 

Why wouldn't I want to?

 

There is virtually nothing available either as off the shelf RTR or as kits.

 

Has it been done before?

 

Once or twice.


Edited by whart57, 16 August 2017 - 15:09 .

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#2 Andy Kirkham

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 16:19

I would suggest the  760mm lines of Jugoslavia - a narrow gauge system on the grandest scale with a route length exceeding 1500 Km and a class of locomotive (the Class 83 0-8-2) that numbered over 180 members. The scenery was often stupendous, rivaling Switzerland in grandeur. Lines threaded deep gorges and crossed mountain passes by means of rack and hairpin curves. The numerous standard locomotives existed alongside a great variety of ancient oddities as well as railcars and - towards the end - diesel locomotives.

 

Browse these pictures and be amazed http://www.penmorfa.com/JZ/index.htm


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#3 brack

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 17:05

Absolutely the JZ Ng network, but I'd also suggest that the various colonial networks are very much neglected.

One I'd think deserves attention is the Argentinian railway system up to the 60s/70s - various gauges from metre to broad with large networks, often built and run along UK practice with many UK built locos and later generations of us or foreign built power.
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#4 Dutch_Master

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 19:33

First, GTM loco 13 mentioned in the OP is no longer at the NSM, its new home is the NG museum at the Valkenburgse Meer recreational lake, near Leiden.

 

As the OP has a particular interest in Dutch prototypes, I'll mention a few more interesting operations.

 

First, the RTM. It operated between Rotterdam and the islands in the S/W delta with steam trams (later diesel-ised), a relatively extensive bus network for the era and ferry services between various ports on the islands. All this vanished in the 1953-66 period. Mostly as the 1953 flood devastated so much track it was uneconomical to repair, in its aftermath plans were drawn up to form an all-inclusive Delta-plan (only finally completed in the mid-1990's!) and as land was redistributed to form better farm-able land (larger plots, mostly) roads moved and the tram tracks were simply in the way. And the city of Rotterdam had set its greedy eyes on the lucrative transport of workers for the booming harbour, wishing to eliminate a competitor for their own RET in the south of the city and to this end effectively promised a subway system for better transport to the city: most islanders in the direct vicinity went to Rotterdam for their purchases as it was the nearest large town to have the shops they wanted to visit. The RET finally connected Spijkenisse (a large suburb of the city) in the 80's to their metro network while the last of the RTM trams ran in Jan 1966. :rolleyes:  The Metro uses part of the RTM RoW but doesn't connect the entire former RTM area. The RTM survived as a museum, originally on a last section of the original line to Hellevoetsluis and it had plans to rebuild a section of the line, but found its way blocked by a tram-hating neighbour who owned a critical section of the line and had enough influence in the local Council to turn it against the museum. Not difficult as said Council had their own plans to redevelop the land the museum occupied (but didn't own). In the early 1990's the museum relocated to a new location, in no way related to the original RTM but it allowed expansion of their operations by having their museum line to cross over the Brouwersdam. Today, it thrives to the extend that was never possible had it stayed in Hellevoetsluis. Parts of the old RTM network can be traced in the landscape (and on Google Maps/Earth, look for the hamlet of Biert, the tramway went right through it and is now converted to a cycle path) but a lot has been lost due to construction of estates, shopping centres and other buildings. Modelling the RTM is not impossible, if you choose H0 scale and knows how to wield a soldering iron or similar. There's some offerings of RTM stock, including loco's, rail cars, passenger and freight cars in brass from one-man outfits that could best be described as "scratch-aids", akin to Worsley Works offerings. A local group has actually modelled parts of the RTM network in a large-ish modular layout which has been on the exhibition circuit for a while. It includes a working model of one of the major tram bridges the RTM had to build to connect some islands and a wonderful sight to behold it is!

 

Other interesting networks include the HTM, EDS, NBM, NTM and LTM, which I could expand on in later instalments should interest in them been expressed. :yes:


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#5 Ian Morgan

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 19:59

Vaser Valley Forest Railway in Romania. Narrow gauge logging railway, still using steam, plus some more unusual motive power.

 

 


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#6 tetsudofan

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 20:21

No, go for the Harz (HSB) in Germany.....then you can venture out into the garden......

 

HSB-2-10-2T-06.jpg

 

AllTrainsOnMountain-01.jpg

 

Keith


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#7 Chris M

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 21:40

I have often thought the line just south of Tarragona in Spain would make an interesting model. It is single track but it handles in interesting variety of trains. Local and regional stoppers to Barcelona, freights, Talgo Tren Hotel and the Euromed high speed train from Barcelona to Valencia all mixing it along a single line. Often the locals are held at passing stations for quite a while in order to ensure the Euromed gets a clear run through. A few years ago a new high speed line bypassing the single track section was opened. As a model it would provide quite a mix of train types and some interesting operation. Some of the line runs along the back of a beach which would make a nice setting for a Euromed train on a single track line.

I also like US short lines where pretty much anything can be run.
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#8 EddieB

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 21:40

Another ex-Geldersche Tramwegen locomotive formerly at Utrecht and now at Valkenburg is Henschel 6848/1904, originally Stoomtram Vrijland Zuitphen-Emmerik ZE7 (as restored), which became GTM 607 "VRIJLAND" when the line was taken over.

 

Here it is in earlier days at Utrecht - I think a visit to Valkenburg beckons!

 

3F01034a.jpg



#9 TEAMYAKIMA

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 21:54

Chinese narrow gauge steam in the 21st century ....

 

china oct 2004 089.jpg

 

It's on my list in On30!


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#10 Dutch_Master

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 22:03

Actually Eddie, recently that loco has been in the workshop at the museum with the intent to look if it can be re-gauged and restored to service, so it may not be on display when you come round. As underneath it's a simple 0-4-0 with outer frames, conversion is relatively simple. But the entire overhaul required to bring it back to life and most of all the associated cost is expected to be a major obstacle in getting approval for this project.

 

Mind, there are 2 places named Valkenburg here. The better known, and larger, one is in the deep south, near the Belgium/German border. It has a station, which sees the occasional steam train from neighbouring ZLSM museum, has a (large) brewery and some caves to visit but otherwise very little to offer us railway buffs. The other one is on the outskirts of the city of Leiden near the Coast and technically doesn't exist anymore, being absorbed into the municipal authority of neighbour Katwijk some years ago. Now that is where the museum is, I've linked to it in my earlier reply above :yes:

 

If you're planning to come over, try aiming for the last weekend of September. It's a special weekend for modellers, with a lot of the 009 Soc. Dutch group attending. Ted Polet is their unofficial webmaster and also "CEO" of the Craigcorrie & Dunalistair Railway. Knowing him in person, he's a very nice bloke to talk to, on- or offline :yes:

 

HTH!


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#11 EddieB

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 23:04

Yes, thank you DM. I was aware that the Valkenburg where the museum is is in a different province to the better-known Valkenburg (where we were scheduled to overnight on my first foreign trip - a coach journey to the Tirol - but were switched to Maastricht instead). As my interest is more prototype than model, I might try to find a different weekend. Sorry!
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#12 whart57

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 07:46

Chinese narrow gauge steam in the 21st century ....

 

attachicon.gifchina oct 2004 089.jpg

 

It's on my list in On30!

 

Aren't there some good YouTube clips of one of these lines?



#13 whart57

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 07:54

Actually Eddie, recently that loco has been in the workshop at the museum with the intent to look if it can be re-gauged and restored to service, so it may not be on display when you come round. As underneath it's a simple 0-4-0 with outer frames, conversion is relatively simple. But the entire overhaul required to bring it back to life and most of all the associated cost is expected to be a major obstacle in getting approval for this project.

 

Probably easier to get steaming again than this one

 

MRC_tank.JPG


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#14 EddieB

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 14:11

Of course there is a natural tendency towards places or railway/tramway systems where we have some degree of familiarity - either having visited or been inspired by books or articles.

Taking a step back from the specifics of the Dutch systems (for which references to available literature are much appreciated), but keeping the focus on the kind of operations Holman Stephens might have overseen, had he been born elsewhere, I would recommend "Bygone Light Railways of Europe" (Laursen, Oakwood, 1973) as a more general source of inspiration for Western Europe in general.

Also worth finding is anything by WJK (Keith) Davies, whose books and magazine articles tend to be populated with good photos and scale drawings. Davies was one of the original joint editors of the formative series of Continental Railway Journal in the 1960s, concentrating on light railway systems at a time when most enthusiasts were intent on tracking down working steam exclusively, and went on to write a number of books and articles in Continental Modeller.
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#15 298

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 14:52

What are they?

 

South Atlantic Whaling station narrow gauge lines. Very few used Steam power on rails, but you could imagine the network at one of the larger stations being served by a small Steam loco (Jouef or Roco HOe).

 

 

 

Where can I find information?

 

http://www.railwayso...11cwhaling.html ,including the intriguingly titled "Staten Island Seal Catching Boat Tramway".

 

 

Why would I want to?

 

It's make a nice little minimum space layout, and offer new modelling opportunities on a different theme. The trick would be to imply what was happening, without resorting to modelling the entire process (unless it was justified for educational reasons...)

 

 

Why wouldn't I want to?

 

It can be a bit of a Taboo subject, possibly playing on the theory that some degrees of art ought to be controversial. And I wouldn't like to be the parent explaining to their kids "And this layout carries Stone.... this carries Cheese.... and this carries the recently culled carcass of a majestic marine mammal...

 

 

Has it been done before?

 

Well, has it...?


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#16 Northroader

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 15:23

NORMANDY BRANCH LINES.
The popular scene for British modellers was always the traditional GWR branch line. Just heading across the channel you could find an equally attractive scene for branch lines: http://forum.e-train...3:IMG_0976.JPG]
The best place for modelling information for these lines is here:http://roland.arzul....erso-orange.fr/

Edited by Northroader, 18 August 2017 - 08:21 .

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#17 whart57

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 15:55

Like the meter gauge lines of Brittany. Though since the Gravetts and Pampoul they are unlikely to be unknown to British modellers

#18 £1.38

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 16:00

South America has/had some amazing railways - like the Central Railway of Peru climbing over the Andes on a series of spindly viaducts and zigzags, for example

 

On another continent, Eritrea has another very interesting system with some very photogenic locations..



#19 whart57

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 16:07

Many branch lines on the continent stayed open for freight until well into the diesel era.The Dutch Rail Magazine carried an in depth article on the line to the Zuyder Zee port of Lemmer. In its last days this was operated by the Bo shutters of the 200 class - available from Roco I believe. Another possibility is the line to Wageningen which was operated using 2400 class Bo-Bo types, also available RTR. Also the 600 class - aka the BR 08 shunter.

#20 whart57

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 16:08

South America has/had some amazing railways - like the Central Railway of Peru climbing over the Andes on a series of spindly viaducts and zigzags, for example

There is a 3mm scale layout based on a Chilean Andes railway. All Garratts and Mallets and the builder doesn't need to bother with modelling vegetation


Edited by whart57, 17 August 2017 - 18:54 .


#21 brack

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 16:19

Has it been done before?

Well, has it...?


Yes. Nofraric (a French trio) did an o9 microlayout based on a fictional whaling station on Kerguelen.

http://fr.1001mags.c...58-Page-007.jpg

I've found it quite an interesting little layout, given my o9 modelling - loads of character. I'm not sure I'd be quite so cartoonish with the whales and penguins if it was mine (for a Sudanese 18" project I drew up and 3d printed the correct species of tortoise for the area). But I suppose it gets around the gruesome nature of it a little.
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#22 298

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 16:26

Yes. Nofraric (a French trio) did an o9 microlayout based on a fictional whaling station on Kerguelen.http://fr.1001mags.c...58-Page-007.jpg
I've found it quite an interesting little layout, given my o9 modelling - loads of character. I'm not sure I'd be quite so cartoonish with the whales and penguins if it was mine (for a Sudanese 18" project I drew up and 3d printed the correct species of tortoise for the area). But I suppose it gets around the gruesome nature of it a little.


I stand corrected, even if it does look like its been done in a "Wallace & Gromit" style. It'd certainty qualify for the unusual foreign layout category at Warley.
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#23 Dutch_Master

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Posted 17 August 2017 - 19:09

Many branch lines on the continent stayed open for freight until well into the diesel era.The Dutch Rail Magazine carried an in depth article on the line to the Zuyder Zee port of Lemmer. In its last days this was operated by the Bo shutters of the 200 class - available from Roco I believe. Another possibility is the line to Wageningen which was operated using 2400 class Bo-Bo types, also available RTR. Also the 600 class - aka the BR 08 shunter.

Dutch diesel and electrics are fairly well catered for by the mainstream manufacturers, mainly Roco, due to a very active agent here in NL at the time. Steam however, is entirely different. Artitec released the first real RTR Dutch steam loco a few years back, the NS3700 series in several (actually all) liveries. Then they did the same with another iconic Dutch kettle, the NS6300. This 4-8-4 was at the time the biggest and most modern European tank loco (1922). A local lad is doing early steam in brass kits, while both kits and RTR brass loco's once where available from Philotrain, which frequently collaborated with the likes of Lemaco, to give you an idea of detailing on those models. :o

 

For those wishing to explore further, look up Werps modelbouw, MK Modelbouwstudio, Tilly Models, Kleinspoor and Phildie.


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#24 Vecchio

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Posted 18 August 2017 - 10:59

Just to give my nationalistic suggestion: Austria, Waldbahn Steinhaus - Rettenegg. For those who are fit in German: see at https://de.wikipedia...istritzwaldbahn

This was a 600mm narrow gauge railway, erected by the landowner between 1902 and 1917 to get wood out of his forests. It was connected to the Suedbahn (Mainline Vienna to Italy) at the station of Steinhaus very close to the Semmering pass. There were facilities to re-load the timber to normal gauge trucks. It had a rather short life, as it stopped being used a short time after the second world war in 1958. It starts at 838m and ends at 862m above seal level, but it had a pass in the middle which is 1298m above sea level. Both sides of this pass saw an inclined plane type wagon lift - means the locomotives stayed either on the Steinhaus or on the Rettenegg side.

 

Could be an interesting feature, if somebody makes a model then he has to find a cheap source for spruces, firs and similar trees as this is in the Styrian woodlands....

 

Vecchio


Edited by Vecchio, 18 August 2017 - 12:12 .

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#25 whart57

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Posted 18 August 2017 - 11:31

On the other hand it's a lot easier to disguise the join between baseboard and backscene if you have a forest :sungum:


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