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Grayling was right: Electrification sucks...


wombatofludham

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There's a title I bet you never thought you'd read, but after installing OHLE to the layout today, I've gone right off electrification and am happy to wait for pixie-fart or bionic unicorn dung powered trains to de-carbonise the railway.

Don't get me wrong, once you've worked out how to clip the wires onto the masts and their correct spacing, the Dapol system is pretty good, it's just the fiddle of getting the wires onto the masts, when you are 57, with sausage fingers and reaching over 20" of 9mm ply that meant I only managed five feet before I lost the will to live.  Fortunately I'm only stringing knitting over the scenic bits, Wombourne and the Fiddle Yard (that well known Australian blue-grass fiddle band) will be wireless so tomorrow should see me complete the main line, I've then got to do the bay but I need a new batch of masts and wires to complete that, so I should be able to spend the rest of the day gunking up the track with the airbrush, but next time I decide to do proper OHLE, I think I'll just have a quiet word with myself and go model something diseasel.

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The Dapol wires look clunkier in the photo than in real life.  I'm pretty impressed with them to be honest, I just wish they had persevered with their planned portal frame gantries as plain line masts are of limited use.  I still need to install concrete troughing and then fill in the bare wood with ballast.

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Pretty sure you wouldn't be allowed to have advertising hoardings that close to 25kV.  It's one possible explanation for the fact the adverts all seem stuck in a late 60s time warp, no one has been able to replace them for fear of getting an AC jolt to the behind.

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Despite my frustrations I'm pleased I decided to add OHLE to the scenic bits, it's surprising just what a difference it makes even if it is Mk3 catenary which seems to have appeared in Wednesford ten years before it was used north of Weaver Junction.  My excuse?  IMFR, bite me.

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  • RMweb Gold

Hmmmm I've got to say that you have chosen the easy route!!! Looks good though, let's see some trains with coathangers up?

 

Andi

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I know, but I take the view that whilst I could have made more effort to do the correct era masts for the location, as I am only just mastering the skill of soldering after 45 years of trying to learn how to solder without melting the table or giving myself third degree burns, and it really has taken that long for me to have achieved a test piece where I soldered a wire to a length of scrap track without any problem or destruction, I figured soldering up brass and copper strip to create the portal frames and probably stitched catenary for the location was way beyond my current level of competence.  The alternative would have really been masts and no wires, or nothing, neither of which I was completely happy with.

As it's a fictional location, my excuse is it was an experimental installation to test simpler OHLE systems which later became the Mk3 system. 

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Diseasel? I thought I read you would be first in the queue for the mythical RTR Precedent! I'm rather looking forward to Wednesford 1890s... a completely different architectural modelling challenge!

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Sausage fingers or not, I think this looks rather convincing.

 

As to the hoardings, I suspect (but may be wrong) that regulations will have tightened in the last 60 years, so what was OK in 1960 isn't now.

 

Actually, I'm rather envious. My layout is planned to receive a 3-4 metre length of Woodhead style catenary, which really needs to be made from scratch, preferably by soldering "H" section brass and so on. It hasn't happened - yet.

 

John.

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Have you had a look at some of the continental masts from Sommefeldt?  Some of the Belgian and Dutch masts do have a resemblance to the LNER designed masts used on the GE and Woodhead, and although Sommerfeldt will be HO rather than OO and still involves soldering, it might offer something that could help as a scratch-build aid.

 

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2 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

Diseasel? I thought I read you would be first in the queue for the mythical RTR Precedent! I'm rather looking forward to Wednesford 1890s... a completely different architectural modelling challenge!

Actually my next project is a small terminus to fiddle yard in a spare side conservatory currently used as a junk-hole (I live alone so no need to appease any domestic authorities...) which will be a fictional North Wales seaside terminal off the Afon Wen to Caernarfon line, set primarily in the 1934-9 period LMS but if the "Improved Precedent" tease from the Widnes box-shifters ever breaks cover I'll be in for a few, I know if it is a model of "Hardwicke" it'll be the 6ft 9 inch driving wheel "Jumbo" but as the 6ft 3in "Waterloos" were virtually identical bar the scale 2mm different driving wheel, I'd want a "Sister Dora" in LNWR black.

In fact the terminus will cover any period from 1850s to the 1990s although fitted with LMS standard signals and signage, including Irish stock.  Basically it'll be my rule 1 unmodernised semaphore signalled station for when I want something other than trains with coathangers.  I'm not a paid up member of the Finescale Taliban so I'm happy to overlook the wrong kind of signals for 1845 and 1910!

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  • RMweb Gold

I had Ravensclyffe up last week for the first time in 6 years, that has portals over the yard and pointwork but cantilevers on the main line. First time I'd been able to see all the portals together, there are 33 of them in a run, many of which carry wiring for six tracks! The portals are all N-Brass etches.

 

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Andi

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I've seen the N Brass portals and had a nice chat with the man who makes them a couple of years back, they do convey the atmosphere of the 1960s electrification scheme portals excellently.  I did seriously consider them but now I've completed the installation on Wednesford I'm actually quite happy with the results from the Dapol masts, to be honest the only visually jarring issue is the arrangement of the register arms, the different height between the catenary and contact wires compared to the early West Coast wiring is probably less noticeable than I thought it might be.

If I win the lottery and move house, hopefully I will have progressed enough with soldering exercises to tackle a model of Rugeley TV, protal frames and all!

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