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A Contemporary N Gauge Project

Entries in this blog

 

Abandon Blog!

I have come to the conclusion that an evolving project like this is better suited to a topic rather than a blog format.   I'm not porting the whole lot over to the new topic - late-comers will just have to read through the blog first to get up to speed, but future Hatton updates will appear in the new topic here.   So go on then, there's nothing to see here!

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I Still Hate Point Motors

Having made some good progress with the scenery on the 'country' end board the scenic machine was ready to roll onto the middle (station) board. First I thought I'd sort out a couple of niggles whilst I could still flip the board over and lay it on its back.   I had changed the socket postition from on top of the boards behind the backscene to a more conventional under baseboard location, so I had to make up a new 25-way socket with longer wires to replace one of them and had to build a pair o

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More Grasses

The canal is starting to get hairy. This is from Woodland Scenics field grass cut into clumps then pushed into dollops of PVA. Once it has dried I'll deal with some of the overlong strands and dust the canal. The hedge along the lane is scouring pad cut into strips and coated with Woodland Scenics coarse turf. (Thanks to everyone who pm'ed me with suggestions. You're all wonderful people :icon_thumbsup2:)

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Puff Puff

Returned from Warley with some fibres and a Puffer Bottle. It has produced some hairy grass on the embankment but methinks that a flyswat based electrostatic grass tool is needed for a proper job. Off to the garage to raid the strategic reserve of round tuits I think.:icon_mutter:  

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Going Green

The first layer of greenery is starting to appear. It is starting to look like a model railway at last!

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Out in the Country

Every so often I make a little progress. The hill looks like it is going to be rural rather than industrial. Meanwhile I have put in the canal, fixed the sides on the girder bridge and started to build the abutments and tunnel mouth (Scalescenes again).   The pipe bridge over the canal is also in the 'maybe' category. The pipe ought to be bigger, but it is quite an appealing structure in its way.    

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Back on the Branch

Charmouth seems to have gone all shy and is trying to hide behind the freezer. I think it must be nervous about Warley!   Meanwhile Walton has been dusted off ready for a local exhibition next Saturday. The use of a flat screen monitor, laptop computer and plastic shelves provides a new high-tech information system to replace the pieces of paper that used to be posted at strategic places around the layout!   Now there's 1970s for you. A beat up 24 and a tranny.   Now there's a messag

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Starting the Scenery

Now that the electrics are finished:D I can start on the scenery for Hatton.   The large LEDs are a temporary signal - the scale ones are far too delicate to be installed yet.   The foam is Knauf Space Board and the second layer will lift off to give access to the tracks below. I need to build a Scalescenes tunnel mouth and then trim the foam back to suit. The backsecene board is foamcore. To make it bend cut a vertical line on the back every half-inch or so and then break the foam along the

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Light Fantastic

Wrexham & Shropshire service passing the temporary signals.   The sensor is just in front of the front coupling - the main signal will go red when it is triggered, yellow when the train reaches the fiddle yard and then green about 30 seconds later.   The bay signal is held at red as the points are set against it. Changing the points will hold the main signal at red and show the appropriate aspect on the bay signal instead.   Clever stuff this.:icon_thumbsup2:   All I need to do now i

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Knit One, Purl One

Leaving point motors behind I have moved on to the colour light signalling.   The signals won't be installed just yet - I'll wait until the baseboards spend most of their life the right way up for that - but the clever bits are going in.     The up line (left-right) has a signal with a route indicator (feather) which is illuminated when the train is routed to the bay platform. The down line has a signal at the end of the platform with a second one on the bay. Ground signals are situated

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I Feel Fine (Scale)

After an unpleasant experience with a point motor (don't ask, I don't want to talk about it * :icon_mutter:) I thought I'd try some of this boundary pushing lark.   Following Graeme's revalation that current production N stock will run on 2mm Association Easitrac I felt that it had to be worth a play - so with a supply of concrete sleeper Easitrac sprues, some code 40 flat bottom rail, a supply of copperclad sleepers and a couple of 2mmFS track gauges it was time to play.        

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Support Your Local Model Shop !?**!

If you are upset by ranting, look away now!   I have made a decision. In future, unless I happen to be going past the door of a suitable retailer or attending an exhibition, I shall obtain my modelling supplies by post.   Let me explain.   This weekend's project was to complete the wiring of the point motors on Hatton so that it would be possible to operate it from the control panel, rather than moving from end to end to switch points.   Working on the centre board which has two crossove

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The Beal Thing

Whilst I am putting in yet more wires on Hatton Parkway to get all the point motors working I thought that I'd take time out to do some musing (they can't touch you for it, you know).   Back in the days of yore there were model railways that put the emphasis on the railways rather than the model. This is something that is still big in the US - models of large sections of railway systems rather than a single station, or part of one. Currently the UK hobby seems to be concentrated on producing r

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Playing Trains

After a long pause I have been able to resume work on Hatton Parkway and have got the last of the power wires connected up - so it's time to play trains!   This Farish XC Voyager is a replacement for a Dapol Virgin one. The Farish uses the same type of coupling as the Bachmann OO one - nowhere near as easy to use as Dapol's magnetic version.   A Chiltern Railways unit from Marylebone on its way to Birmingham.   I'm not sure what the Arriva unit is doing - deputising for a London Midl

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A Little History

Hatton Parkway is another project layout. This time, for a change, it is 'N' and contemporary operations. The idea is to move on from the 'Shake-the-Box' style layout and use flexible track, some kit-built structures and more advanced electrics. The thread on the old forum can be found here.   The layout was originally named Kingsbury Parkway. Kingsbury is situated just outside the West Midlands conurbation, not too far from Tamworth. By amending history a little it could serve as a suitable l

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