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Modelling different days/times of day




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#1 Phil R

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 09:53

Does anyone alter their layout to represent different days or times?

A lot of effort often goes into modelling the correct era or season but what about the difference between times of day and the day itself.

For example, morning and evening rush hour, increase in road traffic, buses, traffic jams. Increase in number of passengers on platform.

Late evening, increase in parcels/mail activity - barrows, sacks, staff etc.

Weekends in summer season/bank holidays, increase in road traffic- caravans, campers, coaches.

Increase in leisure travellers, rather than commuters.

I'm aware that some of this more relevant to more recent times and some scenarios would be more appropriate to larger towns/stations.


It should be fairly easy to replicate by replacing vehicles on a layout, passengers on a platform would be more involved, perhaps using groups on thin clear plastic slides or interchangeable sections of platform.

Be interested to hear what others think.

Regards

Phil



#2 Clive Mortimore

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 10:44

Hi Phil

 

A very interesting topic. Many modellers, and I don't exclude myself, looking at many good layouts seem to have a difficulty in modelling a season except winter, let alone a specific month. Our figures quite a lot of the time are wearing clothes to keep warm but the sky on the backscene suggest they should be in their Speedos and with factor 50 slapped on, or conversely the model trees are in full leaf and the ones on the photographic backscene have bare branches.

 

The layout I am building I will be aiming for mid summer on a warmish day and I hope to reflect this with my modelling as this will be the closest I get to a set time and day. Layouts take time to build so spend some time observing the natural changes that occur each year then pick which state of the seasonal cycle you wish to model.

 

You mention time of day, one observation I have noticed (and been guilty of) is station and yard lights being on in daylight. Next time you walk down the street to the station count the number of outside lights that are on in daylight. If you see one please ring the local council as so they can send someone to repair the timer. Railways like councils do not like spending money on electricity (or gas) to illuminate areas when the sun does it for free.


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#3 MarkSG

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 12:11

I've seen several layouts which are deliberately modelled at night. And one of Dave Rowe's layouts - either Llareggub or Axminster, can't remember which (or possibly both of them)  - had the ability to switch between day and night modes, very effectively. But I've never seen one that does different times of the day to any more granular degree than just light/dark, or, for that matter, different days of the week.

 

I think different times of daytime is likely to be difficult because so much of it is about lighting, which is hard to make variable on a typical layout construction. And I'm not sure that most of us would notice a significant difference in days of the week, at least not with the extremely compressed timetabling generally used on models.


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#4 Phil R

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 12:59

I am attempting to set my late 1980s based layout in mid-late May, the reasoning being that the Summer timetable had just been introduced, offering plenty of Fridays & Saturdays only long distance loco-hauled services.
To me this would mean a lot of greenery, hawthorn blossom (may tree), and the possibility of a warm, blue-sky day or a cold, grey sky day. (Cast not a clout 'til May is out)

Clive, you make an interesting point about clothing on figures. Model a beach scene, it's obvious and straightforward what people would wear. An overcast but muggy Thursday morning is a bit more complicated.

MarkSG, I'd not considered the lighting beyond daylight/night if I'm honest, as you say it would be a challenge to replicate the changes in daylight convincingly.

The fidelity (or not) to the timetable and the compression of time (or not) is also relevant.

For example, when you collect that new rake of wagons on a Friday morning, who would leave them in the box over the weekend because the Working timetable shows them working on a Tuesday/Thursdays only service?

Cheers

Phil

#5 The Johnster

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 14:55

This has been given much thought on Cwmdimbath, but less in the way of actual implementation.  The intention has always been to model the atmosphere of the South Wales valleys in the 1950s, and the local climate was by and large damp and gloomy.  The lighting is blue leds,  and the intensity can be altered from overcast to full on heavy rain.  There are not many people about; this is because they stay indoors except when they have to come out, and they should be wearing coats and hunched against the weather; Modelu figures seem to have the general idea!

 

But the position of the layout means that some natural sunlight strikes on it around lunchtime.  By coincidence rather than design, this corresponds to the strike of midday sun in the real Dimbath Valley.  

 

I disagree about winter being the only season modelled, though; most layouts seem to me to be stuck in perpetual high summer.  Trees and hedgerows are fully leafed, crops are growing in the fields, grass is green, gardens beflowered (and maidens deflowered, presumably), and manual workers shirtsleeved.  

 

I attempt to model for 3 seasons, gloomy spring, gloomy summer, and gloomy autumn.  Colours are subdued and grey cast.  Winter would require my mountainsides to be brown, the grass and bracken dead.  Ultimately, rain will be evoked by sound effect and the general gloominess of everything enhanced by internally lit buildings, but this will mean replacing my resin station building so that the wall thickness is not exposed to one's critical gaze.  Interior details must be placed in the signal box, and the roof is detachable for this reason.  Sheep are to be huddled in sheltered spots, and there is to be no birdsong; this is for brighter days. 

 

I run to a timetable based loosely (as is the whole shebang) on Abergwynfi, which itself imposes the feeling of time passing.  A single car, an Austin Dorset, is parked outside the station entrance between 08.00 and 18.00; it's owner is a manager at Tremains Royal Ordnance near Bridgend and he commutes on the ROF workman's.  Future plans include night running, so the signals will have to be lit even though the branch operates one engine in steam later in the evening, and a lit auto train.  

 

But overall 'dull day' lighting removes the need for altering the strike of sunlight as the day progresses.  It is not cheating, but the prevailing climate for this location.


Edited by The Johnster, 11 June 2018 - 14:57 .

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#6 34theletterbetweenB&D

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 09:41

It's a perpetual summer day on my system, even when the timetable means that I am running the overnight freights and sleepers. I want to see the trains! There is a plan afoot for occasional weekend representation, I am going to have a Saturday of holiday traffic followed by  a Sunday of outsize load movement along with an engineering deployment, and see whether that proves sufficiently interesting.

 

As for people, other than a major city centre location, observe a station. Most of the time there is no one in sight. So no need to model people, they are barely there.


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#7 sir douglas

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:06

i remember one year at the Barnsley exhibition maybe about 10 years ago, they got many layouts with night time settings (i.e. lots of little lights in the windows street lamps and signals) one of them being Keighley club's Runswick Bay. they periodically slowly dimmed the hall lights down and the layouts lit up and cycled a few times a day between day and night



#8 E3109

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:22

They alternate to night time every 15 minutes at Miniatur Wunderland in Hamburg, very effective with the masses of lights they have there.

#9 Clive Mortimore

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:37

It's a perpetual summer day on my system, even when the timetable means that I am running the overnight freights and sleepers. I want to see the trains! There is a plan afoot for occasional weekend representation, I am going to have a Saturday of holiday traffic followed by  a Sunday of outsize load movement along with an engineering deployment, and see whether that proves sufficiently interesting.

 

As for people, other than a major city centre location, observe a station. Most of the time there is no one in sight. So no need to model people, they are barely there.

Hi

 

That is true for most locations, most of us turn up to catch the train with a few minutes to spare so you only get a "crowd" in the last five minutes. These tend to congregate around the platform entrance or close to the bridge if the entrance is on the other side.

 

Peak hour(s) tend to have a different platform distribution as the regular travelers know where the seats will be or which coach to get on so they can exit their destination station quickly. Holiday specials, Wakes weeks excursions etc also tended to have a more even gathering along the platform but once the train loaded the station would be empty for the rest of the day.

 

Many city termini can have quite a collection of lost souls on the concourse but those long platforms are normally empty until the train arrives and the punters are allowed to board it.

 

We as modellers are very bad at observing the actions of our fellow humans and displaying this on our models...............next time you are at a station see how many adults sat on the platform benches are waving both feet in mid air, then look at many so called excellent layouts.    


Edited by Clive Mortimore, 12 June 2018 - 11:38 .

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#10 Fat Controller

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:37

I recollect a layout that modelled the four seasons, by having a different board for each one.



#11 MarkSG

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 13:12

I recollect a layout that modelled the four seasons, by having a different board for each one.

 

Elmwell Village Depot, as mentioned in the Rapido J70 thread. There's a nice video of it on Youtube: https://youtu.be/TfO...4kpA?t=1h26m34s

 

And a set of photos on Flickr: https://www.flickr.c...in/photostream/


Edited by MarkSG, 12 June 2018 - 13:15 .


#12 34theletterbetweenB&D

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 13:20

I recollect a layout that modelled the four seasons, by having a different board for each one.

Clever idea, but I don't see much scope for anchovies in a UK context.


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#13 The Johnster

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 14:34

Hi

 

That is true for most locations, most of us turn up to catch the train with a few minutes to spare so you only get a "crowd" in the last five minutes. These tend to congregate around the platform entrance or close to the bridge if the entrance is on the other side.

 

Peak hour(s) tend to have a different platform distribution as the regular travelers know where the seats will be or which coach to get on so they can exit their destination station quickly. Holiday specials, Wakes weeks excursions etc also tended to have a more even gathering along the platform but once the train loaded the station would be empty for the rest of the day.

 

Many city termini can have quite a collection of lost souls on the concourse but those long platforms are normally empty until the train arrives and the punters are allowed to board it.

 

We as modellers are very bad at observing the actions of our fellow humans and displaying this on our models...............next time you are at a station see how many adults sat on the platform benches are waving both feet in mid air, then look at many so called excellent layouts.    

 

There are no non-railwaymen anywhere on Cwmdimbath.  There isn't much room for them and, in a small mining village such as this, in a narrow enclosed valley, one can hear the train coming and it's only a minute's walk to the station anyway.  Nobody wants to hang around in the rain!

 

Remploy's platform could have one or two characters loafing about on it, but is hidden by stock ostensibly being worked on for most of the time.  The clearances take place during the staff's tea breaks, so nobody is about.  It is quite prototypical to have more sheep than railwaymen on railway property on a Valleys layout.



#14 russ p

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 14:46

I've wondered if those strips of LED mood lighting would be any good for actually lighting a room or are they not powerful enough.
As they could simulate sunrise and sunset

#15 Phil Traxson

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 13:40

I am attempting to set my late 1980s based layout in mid-late May, the reasoning being that the Summer timetable had just been introduced, offering plenty of Fridays & Saturdays only long distance loco-hauled services.
To me this would mean a lot of greenery, hawthorn blossom (may tree), and the possibility of a warm, blue-sky day or a cold, grey sky day. (Cast not a clout 'til May is out)

Clive, you make an interesting point about clothing on figures. Model a beach scene, it's obvious and straightforward what people would wear. An overcast but muggy Thursday morning is a bit more complicated.

MarkSG, I'd not considered the lighting beyond daylight/night if I'm honest, as you say it would be a challenge to replicate the changes in daylight convincingly.

The fidelity (or not) to the timetable and the compression of time (or not) is also relevant.

For example, when you collect that new rake of wagons on a Friday morning, who would leave them in the box over the weekend because the Working timetable shows them working on a Tuesday/Thursdays only service?

Cheers

Phil

Just a small , very pedantic, comment. The correct quote is "Cast not a clout 'til THE may is out", referring of course to your previously mentioned may blossom. 


Edited by Phil Traxson, 13 June 2018 - 13:40 .


#16 The Johnster

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 14:11

I've wondered if those strips of LED mood lighting would be any good for actually lighting a room or are they not powerful enough.
As they could simulate sunrise and sunset

 

The ones I use were available from the late lamented Maplin's at £25 a pop; cool, warm, or mixed settings at 3 power levels.  I have 3 of them for some 10 feet or so of scenic area.  They are a sort of anglepoise and I find them very effective; a cool setting for general running sessions, warm if I want to evoke evening light, and combined for working on the layout under.  The spread and diffusion is good, and I am happy with the way my layout is lit.

 

I find the level of lighting sufficient, but my shunting pole needs to be lit and I have recently invested in some lit tweezers to assist with headcode and tail lamp handling.

 

Pretty sure it will not be too hard to source something similar. 


I've wondered if those strips of LED mood lighting would be any good for actually lighting a room or are they not powerful enough.
As they could simulate sunrise and sunset

 

The ones I use were available from the late lamented Maplin's at £25 a pop; cool, warm, or mixed settings at 3 power levels.  I have 3 of them for some 10 feet or so of scenic area.  

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#17 russ p

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 15:40

I'd need quite a few of these as when finished the scenic area will be about 90ft long in three sections

#18 jcm@gwr

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 16:06

There is (was? I haven't been for a few years) a Spanish themed

layout on display at Pecorama, which took you through a full 24h

sequence in about 15-20 mins, very effective lighting.


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#19 The Johnster

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 19:17

I'd need quite a few of these as when finished the scenic area will be about 90ft long in three sections

 

Ah.  Then you'll need a different solution...

 

This is just a suggestion, and I don't really know what I'm talking about having never looked into matters for such a large application, but it might be worth your checking out hydroponic suppliers, who will probably be able to replicate any daylight condition that a plant needs to grow in, though I would have no idea how much the equipment and professional installation might cost.  Could be a good source of ideas, though!



#20 wombatofludham

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 23:02

I'm looking at installing the low voltage polychromatic LED lighting on strips you can buy off the Bay of Thief, or similar polychromatic LED spot lighting, all of which can be set to differing light levels and colours using remote control. I figure a dark blue on low setting would give a moonlit night effect, a golden yellow, again half setting, for dawn, a blue-white full setting for a sunny mid-day, or half setting for a dull overcast day and an orangey-pink half setting for dusk, plus a vivid green for when the local chemical works goes pop.

I'm also working out if I should lay a strip of led lights at the back of the embankment as an uplighter, with a strip at the top as a downlighter, with a view to recreating light pollution at night, and more subtle sunrise and sunset effects. In theory it ought to work if I paint the back wall a neutral light grey, so long as each strip had it's own infra-red receiver.
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#21 johnlambert

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 06:20

There is (was? I haven't been for a few years) a Spanish themed

layout on display at Pecorama, which took you through a full 24h

sequence in about 15-20 mins, very effective lighting.

It was there when I visited last year.  Agreed, it was quite well done, with the building/street lights coming on as the ambient lighting gradually dimmed.

 

I think one of the layouts in the exhibition behind the model shop in Bourton on the Water goes from day to night by dimming the room lighting.  Possibly not as well done as the one at Pecorama but probably has more wow factor for the average punter, as the Bourton layout I think has a fairground and lots more trains running.



#22 Phil Bullock

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 06:35

Ne'er cast a clout till May be out

 

https://en.wiktionar..._til_May_be_out

 

Is perhaps deliberately ambiguous.

 

As for anchovies....the smell from the Worcestershire Sauce factory could pervade Abbotswood - might put the punters off though!

 

And flowers - certain flowers will be very specific - Abbotswood MK1 had lupins so that is probably June but then there are bluebells and tulips which would be earlier in the year....

 

Back in the late 60s/early 70s the summer weekend timetable was very different to a weekday when there was much more freight - on Saturdays this was cleared for holiday extras. but on Sunday very little traffic of any kind until early afternoon.

 

PHil


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#23 MarkSG

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 07:57

I think one of the layouts in the exhibition behind the model shop in Bourton on the Water goes from day to night by dimming the room lighting.  Possibly not as well done as the one at Pecorama but probably has more wow factor for the average punter, as the Bourton layout I think has a fairground and lots more trains running.

Yes, I've seen that. It's probably fair to say that it's closer to what most of us on RMweb would call a train set rather than a model railway. But it is well-presented, and my children certainly liked it. Which means it's doing what it sets out to achieve.


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#24 Yardman

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 09:22

My layout "Alwinton" runs on a 24hr fast clock that changes layout and building lighting operated by the layouts computer.  See http://www.rmweb.co..../3980-alwinton/

or the August/September/October 2017 Railway Modeller.

DSC 6287Alwinton5web
DSC 7379mod

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#25 Northmoor

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Posted 16 June 2018 - 22:32

That is true for most locations, most of us turn up to catch the train with a few minutes to spare so you only get a "crowd" in the last five minutes. These tend to congregate around the platform entrance or close to the bridge if the entrance is on the other side.

 

Peak hour(s) tend to have a different platform distribution as the regular travelers know where the seats will be or which coach to get on so they can exit their destination station quickly. Holiday specials, Wakes weeks excursions etc also tended to have a more even gathering along the platform but once the train loaded the station would be empty for the rest of the day.

 

Many city termini can have quite a collection of lost souls on the concourse but those long platforms are normally empty until the train arrives and the punters are allowed to board it.

 

We as modellers are very bad at observing the actions of our fellow humans and displaying this on our models...............next time you are at a station see how many adults sat on the platform benches are waving both feet in mid air, then look at many so called excellent layouts.    

All excellent advice Clive.  Stations (and other railway locations) are usually deserted and were even more so in steam days, there's a reason those country branches got closed...... Your last sentence is one of the great truisms about models railways of all standards.   In my imagined dream layout, a two track loop with two signal boxes, a set of carriage sidings, a rural lane and two urban streets, I have already planned the presence of no more than half a dozen people.

 

Unfortunately humans are generally pretty mobile so like the bus on the bridge, people doing the Mannequin Challenge, freezing mid-activity is too common.  With thought, it is possible to suggest the presence of people; a part-painted wall with a ladder, paint pot and newspaper lying around, or a lorry/wagon left partly unloaded perhaps.