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  1. Nice one Andy. It's not often you get the words 'O gauge' and 'discount' in the same sentence! A low key few days for me, I had my Covid booster last Thursday and have felt off the pace ever since. No complaints, it is just the price of maximising my chances of avoiding the virus. 37085 arriving at Garelochead with 1T32 is the extent of current operations, hopefully I will feel sufficiently lively to return to modeling in the next few days.
  2. Station signs courtesy of John Upton's Eagle Signs have been installed at Garelochead, Ardlui and Crianlarich. 'Passengers must not cross the line' signs also aded at each end of the platform at Arrochar. In isolation these are not a step change but they feel like a dotting of an 'i' or a crossing of a 't' in providing finishing touches. More to the point I like them and am grateful to John for his excellent service.
  3. Ever onwards, I spent sometime yesterday on station road signage which I aim to install today. Whilst operating I also found a couple of minor errors in the WTT although these proved easy enough to adjust to make things work. The 1983 running day continues, 37085 had charge of the first Oban to Glasgow service seen arriving at Ardlui.
  4. The running day continues with everything, famous last words, working smoothly. 37011 had charge of the the first Glasgow to Oban train of the day seen arriving at Garelochead. 37011 will pass the opposite working from Oban at Arrochar.
  5. Definitively the western highlands and nice to see more 'modern' traction appearing.
  6. I am just happy that it all works again, last time when I had a similar issue the controller had to be replaced. Ouch! AT £63 pounds per servo controller I try and get maximum use out of them! RETB and the signal box closures that resulted of the mid 1980's were the time that running directions changed. Not all stations changed, the position of the sidings determined which ones did. Ardlui, Garelochead, Bridge of Orchy all changed, Arrochar and Crianlarich did not. Continued running yesterday where the revised WTT is working well. 37012 handled the 0700 Mallaig to Glasgow seen arriving and running around at Fort William. Finishing off the scenery at Fort William is up to number 3 on the 'to do' list behind the cutting at Graelochead and Mallaig station.
  7. A trouble free day of running trains was the reward for Saturday's patience in sorting out the Ardlui servo controller. Not only does this cover the Ardlui section but because there are only 9 servos at Ardlui and the controller has 12 outputs, it additionally operates 3 of the points at Fort William. Whilst not yet complete I am happy with what I have done so far at Ardlui and apart from adding the station sign, I intend leaving the remaining work. Not only does this approach let me play trains, it allows me time to digest what has been done and decide on what further work is required. 37033 continued its journey north with 7B02 seen passing through Ardlui.
  8. It took longer than I expected, most things usually do, but I managed to sort the servo controller problem. I am not certain but suspect that a fat finger on adjusting one of the servos was the cause of my problem which caused the controller to reset itself. This meant I had to re-programme all 12 servos again. By the end of the day I had everything running smoothly again although there was only limited running time. 37043 passed through Crianlarich heading north with the Alcan hoppers, 6S56.
  9. I managed a few hours of running trains yesterday before a Megapoints network problem arose with 2 of the points at Fort William. Hopefully I have determined what the problem is and can solve it with modest effort later today. My next scenic project/activity is the rocky cutting between the north end of the main fiddle yard and Garelochead. Woodland Scenics rock molds will form the sides of the cutting, it will be interesting to see how 'workable' the molds are as they will need cutting and shaping to join them together to create the cutting. It is a bit fiddly because I need 2 removable sections to retain access to hidden storage sidings that are adjacent the running line. 37033 heads 7B01, 0520 Mossend to Mallaig Junction Yard through the cutting and onto Garelochead.
  10. A short video showing Ardlui with its operational signals filmed from a northbound train. My cheap and cheerful sugar cube camera struggles to capture detail and does not do sound. I can't decide whether I like this because it replicates what by todays standards is the typical low grade 1980's film quality or whether I have become adicted to todays HD standards and want a better camera. For now it is the best I have at my disposal.
  11. Indeed, its been quite a journey through lockdowns and Covid with still a long way to go. I managed to complete the Ardlui signalling earlier today which left me free to start running trains again. Part fun and part further testing before I start on the cutting at Garelochead, 37043 heads the Alcan hoppers at Ardlui with working signals at long last.
  12. Yesterday I managed to complete the bulk of the work on the freight platform at Ardlui. Being on the edge of the baseboard the platform is formed in low relief and made out of Wills coarse stone for the facing and plasticard cut to fit for the platform itself. Initial cut of plasticard to form the low relief platform surface Platform glued down and painted in undercoat. The gauge is not quite right yet and the platform surface will get detailing once the paint is dry Bushes added to fill in the remaining gaps in ground cover Looking south towards Ardlui station, I want to motorise the 2 signals to complete this phase of development
  13. My stiff neck/shoulder has not improved sufficiently to progress the signal motorisation at Ardlui. So far I have only managed to complete the work on one signal; it's frustrating but there is nothing I can do but wait for an improvment. Automating points and signals using a Megapoints network has proved more straightforward than I ever expected and unless shunting is required I can manage the entire layout from the control panel located alongside the fiddle yard. The only tricky part in the servo installation is the accurate location of the servo bracket to the point/signal that is being controlled. Get this right and it is a matter of just a few minutes to set the servo to move the point/signal as required. For signals I use a 0.35mm piano wire connecting the servo to the MSE manufactured hole on the arm of the point. Motorised signal looking south Under baseboard mounted servo which controls the above signal 27105 sits in the sidings at Ardlui, like me, it's awaiting a return to action
  14. There was discussion regarding the most appropriate tankers for 1980's WHL a while ago but I cannot recall where is it was and my searches have not found what I want. Others may have better memories than me! I did come across the thread below which provides a good background to oil tanks, their colours and hazard markings. There are plenty of pictures on the internet (I favour Flickr) showing examples on the WHL in a range of colours. I am not that familiar with how freights containing vacum and air braked wagons were marshalled. I believe that the rules and regulations were quite complicated although I have never looked closely at them. I have seen pictures showing vacum braked wagons to the rear of mixed consists behind the air braked wagons which is what I have always understood to be a partially fitted freight. I use Bachmann TTA's which are not strictly correct because TTV's would have been required for the tanks that were tripped between Fort William and Mallaig as the coaching stock was vacum braked. In contrast the freights on the main WHL were all air braked which means that somewhere along the way there would have been an unfitted element. At this point my eyes begin to glaze over and it gets to complicated hence I just stick to the TTA's and blissful ignorance. Not a great resume but it is the extent of my knowledge.
  15. Another Ernie picture shows the trunking stopping alongside the signal with the mechanical point rodding extending onto the point. At Garelochead a 1950's picture shows no trunking which had been installed by the 1980's
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