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I'm Not Committed to Building this, You Understand...




In a previous posting , I mentioned trams . I am trying quite hard to be a good boy and finish things off ,not take on new projects and commitments; but despite my best intentions there have been stirrings on the tramway front.


It started when something caused me to look at the Street Level Models website. I spotted a card kit for Manor House tram station (LT), and that started something stirring. Wasn't Manor House the northern terminus of one of the Kingsway Subway routes ? It was - route 33 to be precise, which lasted until close to the end of London's trams. Could this make a modest diorama to display a tram or two? A quick check of the track map in the back of LCC Tramways Handbook ( no doubt long out of print) showed the track layout at Manor House as a crossroads of two double track routes, with a connection between two of the legs. But on which leg was the tram station? Did Subway cars terminate there?


I mentioned in an earlier post about layout projects and commitments (here) that I had vague inchoate aspirations towards a tramway layout, potentially a London tram layout and that the Highgate Archway area seemed to have potential. The trouble with this was that it would also require a lot of space, or at least length, and if I threw in Holloway depot for good measure , probably with as well


Manor House and the kit promised something smaller , but the crossing is a bit of a problem . Still the operating potential should be high . Initial thoughts crystalised into a figure of 8 , with the 4 arms of the double track crossing linked behind the scenes. At the northern end , this would just be a double track loop providing off stage storage, but at the other end, there would be a single track loop past a depot, , and two double track routes going off stage (using a cassette):


A very crude sketch will show what I mean: - top is north(ish)




Nearly all of this is prototypical , the liberties being the depot and connecting loop at the bottom , and joining the two arms of the crossing behind the scenes at the top . In reality, the right hand leg of the X continued via Stamford Hill, Hackney and Bethnal Green to Aldgate , while the top leg headed for Alexandra Palace, Enfield and Barnet


Obviously this is all very loose and undimensioned, but then this is only a very general conceptual sketch of a might-be (one day)


In the cupboard I had a Tower Feltham kit, and a Tower E1 kit , not to mention a KeilKraft West Ham car. Of course you can't credibly model London with a single E/1. I made the fatal mistake of looking at ebay for the first time in years , and within 10 days I had won two more Tower E/1 kits, a Tower kit for the centre entrance Feltham prototype "Cissie" and a nice diecast Corgi Feltham in LT livery. I think the whole lot came to about £30


Then there's the ABS LCC storesvan kit in the cupboard, not to mention the LCC B class kit, the etched LCC F class single decker Subway car, and the card M class from StreetLevel


Of course I'm not committed to building anything


Shenfield added the StreetLevel Manor House tram station and a changepit. The north leg of the X was MET , not LCC and therefore overhead - the wires continued to the layby loop at Finsbury Park (represented at the bottom left of the sketch) which was for MET services to terminate. Whether any did , is a moot point, but you could imagine Route 34, which ran from Ally Pally using the single decker cars modelled by Ks, being extended. Failing a Ks kit a plausible representation could be bashed out of a Mehano tram....The LT Feltham displays Route 21, which was a joint LCC/MET service from Holborn taking the left to top connection at the Manor House crossing and continuing to North Finchley. Kingsway Subway Route 33 terminated just south of the crossing


This is all strictly hypothetical, you understand....


A trip to Kew Bridge last weekend was meant to supply some mechanisms for bogie trams. Unfortunately both the trader who supplies tram mechanisms and ABS were absent, and although there was a German trader who had a Halling mechanism on his stand he was only taking cash and I didn't have £47 in cash left ...


Which is a great pity , because what I did buy was this:




and about the only thing that would fit to mechanise it is a Halling mechanism. HO is really rather small, and this kit brings it home. Not quite the Holy Grail in whitemetal but not far off - the only Sydney tram kit of which I'm aware


What on earth would I do with this kit ? Well, that's only too easy . A small layout based on the Wynyard terminus of the N Sydney tramways would make a good boxed diorama and could plausibly be done in something like 6 ' x 9"..... The awkward fact is that this is one idea which I might actually have space for , but Wynyard in the rush hour needs more than one trams , and the question arises what else I could come up with


Of couse I'm not committed to building this, or anything else, you understand....

Edited by Ravenser



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Not that I'm encouraging you, of course - and it isn't Sydney but a bit down the road/ http://carendt.us/sc...101a/index.html It has recently been extended and I think there are some videos on Youtube - not that I'm encouraging you, of course.,,,,,and you DEFINITELY don't want to look at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JybRkB7a3A&feature=related nor do you want to search on Youtube for videos by glennofootscray, just to make sure that you aren't encouraged of course!

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I know you'e definately not commited to building anything, but...............


I've been working on a drive system for Felthams involving Haling bogies in a scratchbuilt chassis, works very well on curves down to about 3.5 inch radius, mine ran all weekend at Kew without fault...........fairly cheap too.


And LCC 1 should be along shortly..............

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Thanks for the comments. I definitely need to do something about drive mechanisms - I now have 3 Felthams in the cupboard, plus an R1 , and I'm sure sourcing Halling bogies is the only way I'm ever going to motorise the R1 (DCC with 2 powered bogies in seperate underfloor pockets in a heavy whitemetal floor casting is going to be "interesting" - we're talking about 20mm w/b bogies and I don't think the wheel diameter is much above 6mm) . It would be interesting to know what's been used to motorise those Melbourne trams - though I think the diecast W2 that was around a couple of years ago was actually 4mm scale , which would give more room. That Melbourne layout is very nice, wall to wall green and cream as it should be - I was thinking of something of a similar size, but the difference would be it would be an underground tram station, viewed from the side as a boxed diorama , so the trams naturally disappear into the tunnel either side


I didn't get long enough to see Grime St - I only found that room shortly before I had to go - but what I saw was very good. LCC 1 sounds very interesting.....

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