Apart from spending a few days helping on the 2mm Scale Association stand at exhibitions, I've not done any serious modelling for over six months, and not had any enthusiasm for doing any either. My abortive 2mm Golden Jubilee Layout Challenge entry has been sitting unloved and gathering dust in the spare room, and I was beginning to wonder if I was ever going to get things moving again, but a day at the recent DEMU Showcase seems to have done the trick, and in a slightly unexpected way.
I started off in 2mm scale about 6 or 7 years ago, with the aim of modelling a portion of the North Eastern Railway circa WW1. Eventually the constant flow of tasty kits and parts for BR-era models persuaded me that I perhaps I should move forwards in time 40-odd years to take advantage of these. Now I'm finding that the early British Rail period is becoming more and more interesting!
So now I've started work on a small shunting plank/diorama. The base is an 80cm long 'floating' shelf from a well known high street DIY chain. Whilst browsing a few months ago I noticed that these were on special offer, and thinking that one would make a nice base for a small layout, I bought a gloss black one. The shelf will form a display base, with the actual baseboard sitting on top of it. This will allow me to make all the wiring accessible yet be tucked out of sight.
Over the last few evenings I've learned the basics of Templot and come up with a track plan.
It's a bit rough around the edges, but having printed it out full size and played trains on it, I think it works OK. The templot plan shows the scenic area only - both tracks on the left hand side will lead through a scenic break to a cassette fiddle yard, which will act as the other half of the run-round loop. The headshunt is bottom right with a siding top right.
Scenery-wise, I haven't yet decided exactly what will be happening. I'm a big fan of Neil Rushby's modelling, particularly his Shell Island and Abergwynant layouts (which very have similar track plans to my little shunting plank), but rather than create a model of someone else's model, I'd like to try and base it on a prototype. As you can see from the photos, the blue Farish Class 24 will be the mainstay of the stock, and a small selection of minerals and ballast hoppers will for the majority of the freight stock, so a small quarry branchline in Mid/North Wales seems likely - shades of the Blodwell Quarry branch perhaps?
The next stage is to build the timber framework supporting the trackbase (which will be fixed to the shelf), then it will be time to lay some track (Easitrac of course!). With the 2mm GJ Expo coming up soon which will give me a good dose of inspiration (and probably some more kits and bits to build!), and the long summer evenings, I hope to make reasonable progress and post occasional updates on here (although I'm by no means a fast modeller).