Today I had a visit by friend Dave Clarke, who has weathered some coaches for me and we took the opportunity to assemble the whole scenic section of the layout, using the plastic trestles I bought recently. This allowed all the boards and control panel to be connected up and an attempt at running for the first time. A number of unexpected issues were found so the outcome was rather mixed. Part of the run-round loop and three sidings were completely dead on two boards, despite previous careful checking for continuity. I fear that a period of fault finding lies ahead.
Still, we managed to run some locos and stock over part of the layout, so all was not lost.
After moving some furniture and assembling the boards, the first job was to scrape the paint off the rail heads on the main station board prior to trying to run anything. The following photos show Dave doing the scraping and an overall view of the assembly.
Dave had brought a sound fitted Class 24 and this is seen near the coal drops and also at the head of an arriving excursion train. This is made up of some of the coaches Dave has weathered. He's done a nice job and I'm very pleased with the results - mainly ends, underframes and bobies. The body sides were kept fairly clean on this type of stock.
Then it was the turn of my Stanier 2-6-4 tank, No. 42551, to haul the train. A bit more in period!
Finally, having run round its train (we had to cheat with a bit of finger power over the dead section), the train departs, passing WD 2-8-0, No. 90671, which is standing on the coal drop road, held by the miniature semaphore ground signal.
Good fun playing trains for the first time, but a bit frustrating with the problems.