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⅞″n2 indoor layout of Clachbeg Station in 1935 on the Clach Mh

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Scale and Gauge: ⅞″n2

My chosen combination, 7/8"n2 (7/8":1' or 1:13.7 scale model of 2' gauge), not only has heft and presence, but allows for an accurate representation of 2' gauge using commercially available wheel sets for 45 mm gauge (in common with Gauge 1, IIm, G and Fn3), and scale rail sizes to represent very light rails of 12 lbs/yd and 25 lbs/yd.   [Strictly the gauge is 1 ¾", or 44.45 mm, however in practice wheel sets and mechanisms are interchangeable with 45 mm gauge.]   Occasionall

Richard T

Richard T in General

Permanent Way

Track   A prime consideration in the building of the line was the weight of materials, which had to be brought to the estate by small coastal steamer. Rail weight in particular was thus kept to a minimum, the rail and related ironmongery being imported from Glasgow.   The main line and the Clachbeg branch are laid with 25-pound, 15' long rails on locally-produced wooden sleepers; many sidings still use the original 12-pound rail in 9' lengths, whilst the Bealach line is laid with 12-pound r

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The Model

Clachbeg is a 7/8"n2 scale model of Clachbeg Station as it was in 1935.     7/8":1' equates to 1:13.7 and is a very large scale for modelling; 7/8"n2 represents two-foot gauge on dimensionally-correct 45 mm gauge.   My layout measures a scale 110' on each side and (including the fiddle yard) covers 9,075 scale square feet; in H0n2 it would measure all of 38.5 × 38.5 cm, in OO9 it would be 44 × 44 cm—it surely qualifies as a micro!   [it’s perhaps stretching a point, but generally “micros”

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Richard T

Trackplan

The Clachbeg layout is a micro, measuring 110 scale feet along each side, with board depths of about 29 scale feet...   The plan was drawn using Templot; the 12'3" radius curved turnout to the mine really tested the limits of the software. As I lay the track I'll adjust some of the timbering, as I have varying rail lengths and also am making the joints in places different from the Templot suggestions; at this scale there is plenty of space on the templates for annotations!   The fiddle yard

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Modelling sources

In the building of Clachbeg I have sourced a variety of materials from a number of suppliers, listed here. To be completed.   Baseboards shelving—BigDug; Industrial quality, robust flexiply—W.G. Powell;Have to collect but friendly service foamboard, craft foam—Panel Systems; Bulk only, but great material Scenery plaster cloth and scenic materials—Woodland Scenics from Hobbycraft; Useful to find these off-the-shelf locally plaster to shape the landscape—Artex filler f

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Richard T

Clachbeg branch

Scheduled Train Composition The table shows fixed composition of the scheduled trains; additional coaches or wagons may be conveyed.   Goods Traffic—Inbound   Goods Traffic—Outbound   Rolling Stock In Use

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Rolling stock

The rolling stock is fitted with link-and-pin couplings of various designs; central buffers are generally set 18" above the rails.   Rolling stock is limited to 5'-8" wide by 8'-7" high, and up to 20' long. The curves on the branch lines restrict usage to wagons with a rigid wheelbase of 4'-6" or a bogie wheelbase of 11'—as a result most wagons on the branches are no more than 9' long.     Motive Power Locomotives are black with maroon cabs and black roofs, and are generally kept in good a

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Operations

Scheduled trains have priority. Trains to be driven by sight without the aid of signalling. Tokens to be used to manage line occupancy; the token man at Bothy is to ensure that the shared line to Mains is always only occupied in one direction at any time. Train drivers to ring their bells on the approach to stations, halts, bridges and crossings. Speed limit On the main line: 15 mph, except at the two sharp curves where it is reduced to 9 mph. On the branch lines: 6 m

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Passenger service

Main Line     Clachbeg Branch     Passenger trains convey goods as well. Bothy and Falls are request stops only.   Children attending the schoolhouse at Mains—where school starts at 08:30 and finishes at 16:00—have priority on the 52, the 02 and the 92 trains as far as Mains, and on the 46, the 06 and 96 trains from Mains. The number 8 services are often quite busy, as people return from visiting or from the Old Tosh inn in Kinlochy.     Fares   All train services are free a

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Train numbering

Trains using the main line in any way are numbered; train movements on the branch lines which do not involve Strathan, Falls or Bothy remain unnumbered.   Train numbers are made up of two digits, whereby the initial digits 0_ to 4_ are for up trains and 5_ to 9_ are for down trains.   (A distinction is made between regular, scheduled passenger services, which use 0_ for Kinlochy–Strathan services, 4_ for Mains to Clachbeg services, 5_ for Clachbeg to Mains services and 9_ for Strathan to K

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Costs

The CMER is operated as an estate expense rather than for profit, and its use is free for all estate purposes.   The principle expense item is wages, followed by fuel; general maintenance costs including amortisation of occasional capital projects make up the remainder.   The costs of the CMER are recovered as follows: a levy per adult per annum for unlimited use of passenger services a freight charge per mile per tonne included in the cost of all goods shipped in our out of the e

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Route Profile

Kinlochy   The station consists of a 2 chain run-around loop with a low gravel platform, a carriage siding, a goods siding, a pier spur, a coal siding, two storage sidings, a maintenance-of-way siding and a workshop siding with a separate locomotive spur and turntable, and two-track locomotive shed. The platform boasts a simple stone-built shelter.   All turnouts are switched from a small signal box opposite the platform.   The pier spur is typically busy: here a steam crane hoists grani

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Richard T

Clach Mhòr Estate Railway: The Prototype

Clach Mhòr Estate lies in the north-western highlands of Scotland, covering some 48,000 acres, hemmed in by towering mountains, quaking moors and the sea. The name of the estate derives from a very prominent crag near Kinlochy; clach mhòr means “great stone”. The estate is reached by boat from Kylesku, or by long and difficult footpaths: no road connection exists, and the cost of driving a road connection across the surrounding mountains to the nearest road head over 30 miles away would be exorb

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Staff

The CMER is in itself an important source of employment on the estate. The timetable necessitates two shifts, six days a week, and one on Sundays. Its permanent staff comprises: The Railway Manager. From the inception of the CMER Alexander Ogilvie was both the General Manager and the Chief Engineer, until in 1895 the roles were separated at his request, allowing him to concentrate on the engineering aspects of the railway Callum McNeil succeeded Ogilvie in 1895 and served as General Mana

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Communities

The communities served by the CMER are spread across five principle locations.     Kinlochy   The small settlement of Kinlochy on Loch Tosh is built around the pier, which is the principal connection of the estate with the outside world. Kinlochy boasts a small, licensed public house with accommodation for walkers and other visitors, a boathouse, a general store, the estate workshops, the fuel tanks, a coal bunker, a refrigerated storeroom and a small bottling plant.

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History

Origins of the Estates   The Clach Mhòr Estates trace their origins back to the late eighteenth century, when several smaller properties were amalgamated under the ownership of Frederick McTosh, who was renowned for his benevolent nature—not a common characteristic of landlords at that time, and especially not in the northern highlands of Scotland.   Not much is recorded of this remote estate until about a hundred years later, when Frederick’s great-grandson Angus, who had served the Empir

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Richard T

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