It's not often you realise that you have a completed spare layout almost ready to go, and largely unused, but I had been considering buying some Busch H0f 6.5mm equipment, as they now do two Steam outline models as well as the diesels in the Feldbahn range.
The usual problems with Continental items is finding stockists of the system, but I realised that it does not really require all Busch parts and track to work, and there appears to be enough stockists to get the Steam loco by mail order.
The layout in question is an old HO test track in a spare room, fitted to the walls by brackets. It is full working order and features the large Kibri kit Castle they once made, and indeed may still do.
The existing HO tracks run through two tunnels right under the Castle, and used to form a complete loop around the room. The Castle is near unpainted, so will need a long painting session to bring it to decent condition. (Stock Photo). I may have to pressure wash it to clean the plastic!
The two boards against the wall can be removed and a 7 to 8 foot long looped layout created, leaving the Kibri Castle in place, next to a river and waterfall. There are gradients built in, but the Busch locos with the magnets in action can easily tackle any slope.
Not to scale, outline only
The plan is to simply remove the HO track, and replace with the 6.5mm Z gauge track, forming a loop on the boards at each end, with two halts and a siding to an engine shed. The points will be homemade, perhaps on the Wrenn pattern, with closing frogs to provide a smoother run through them. I did see the Busch points in action and was not totally impressed by them,
The new points can be built on steel plates to allow the Busch traction magnets to work, and the track laid on steel strips cut up on my metal cutting bandsaw.
The layout will need upgrading to far more modern scenery, the pine trees are twisted wire brush types bought in bulk. They may respond to a new coating of static flock or the like, to improve them. They will only be used in the background anyway, to be in front of a new painted background of mountain views.
The plan is to feature the landscape as a vineyard and farm, with the line running along beside the road access to the Castle, headquarters of the Vineyard.
Peco do the Z gauge track required in 24 inch lengths, and the sleepers can be cut out to match the spacing used by Busch on their own track. The Peco Z gauge track is a lot cheaper than the original Busch track.
Rolling stock is no problem, a lot of 009 types will work, with the wheels re-gauged to 6.5mm
I have a stored away fleet of 009 stock from the now abandoned L&B project and even the coaches could be used, or the 4 wheelers used that Peco make. There are plenty of inexpensive 009 hoppers and wagons around as well. The cancelled Heljan L& B locos cover the costs with some to spare and it can be running in just a few weeks. The budget could cover a diesel as well as the Steam Engine.
There are some stored away HO figures that can be used, and I can get more unpainted ones cheap from Hong Kong via Ebay.....They also do nice fence sections as well, which could be used around the Castle approaches.
I have a few HO vehicles as well, Roco and others, and an old Pola kit or two for small workshop and an engine shed.
So a long session in the morning unscrewing the layout from the wall, and moving it to a new home in the front upper room, with the OO light railway layout as well.
A new name will be needed for the Castle, suitably Germanic with alcoholic connections to go with the Vineyard.
Edited by bertiedog, 05 October 2017 - 14:49 .