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Posts posted by Persephone

  1. After a brief hiatus concentrating on North Ballachulish's outing to Glasgow last month, its been nose to the grindstone on completing Greenbooth's track building. The last bit of plain track was laid on Sunday, the last two days have been spent doing cosmetic work putting in half chairs and tidying up in general. It all seems to run OK pushing the coach through so once everything has been fettled it's turn the boards over, fit the point motors and start wiring it all up. 






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  2. Two in the Oldham area got my early money - Roscoes "The Handymans Shop"  - DIY plus Model Railways - which was originally on the corner of Shaw Road and Lees Road lights, in the late 70s moving up to Moorside on Huddersfield Road.  A pokey place but a treasure trove of models and modelling materials at the back, baseboard wood and tops to the front!


    But then there was the daddy, Norman Wissenden's on Chew Valley Road, Greenfield. Known to all as the home of the Saddleworth Surcharge you paid top dollar for RTR. Discount was anathema. But then if you left it long enough you'd get a bargain because once Norman had priced the stock, especially the detailing bits in the large drawers in his showroom, they stayed at that price! Norman was a real gent, kettle was always on and there was always a good bit of chat going on. Norman lived up on the moors at Th' heights above Delph, next to the Royal Oak, and was a great supporter of Dobcross Brass band. His occasional assistant, Harry Maden who lived just down the road from the shop was also a fellow member of Rochdale MRG, a good modeller of buildings, who taught me a lot including a very useful beer quaffing trick he used to use in his RAF days. Sadly both no longer with us. nor as of last week is his local, the Royal Oak.

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  3. I'm afraid due to drop outs and the unlikelyhood of people to actually attend an exhibition in these plague ridden days and not least a duty of care to both exhibitors and public, we have had to cancel the Rochdale 2020 show. Plus it's highly likely even a truly sociable show like ours will escape government bans of ' gatherings". 


    We will be back next year

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  4. The current list of layouts is as follows:


    Hebble Vale Goods (EM) 

    North Ballachulish (EM)  - Withdrawn

    Amalgamated Wagon Works (O)  - Withdrawn

    Rishton. (N) 

    Haslingden (N) 

    Witham Grove (OO) 

    Large American modular layout (HO) 


    Plus one further N gauge layout to be announced


    In addition Locoshed Models and the Class 40 Preservation Society will be trading, further stalls in the form of the Bury Standard 4 group will be open in Bolton Street Station


    It's been a bit of a tall order trying to get the show together in 2 months and some fine details have yet to be nailed down but its coming together. 


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  5. I'm exhibiting at the show and whilst it's all very well asking us exhibitors /traders if we have been in cat 1 and Cat 2 countries, it's the visitors who are more likely to be the problem! 


    I am personally waiting to see how it goes in the next week, as an asthmatic and over 60 I already have grave concerns over my exposure risk not just at the show but at the hotel and any eating / drinking establishments we need to use. If the infection figures continue to ramp up in the next week I'm seriously considering pulling the plug myself, it's not an acceptable risk to the operating crew and myself. 

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  6. Well after the "fun" of converting my 29 to EM Gauge, I finally got to run it in anger on North Ballachulish this last weekend at Model Rail Scotland. I'm pleased to report it ran without trouble all weekend, a fine, almost silent runner, running just as good as the Sutton 24 which also made its debut.


    In fact it ran so well I went and got a two tone green one. Bring out the wheel puller.





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  7. Many thanks to Ian and his team for hosting us at a very successful exhibition.


    It's had its fair share of plaudits and I would add mine to them, without a doubt the best Model Rail Scotland. Loads of great layouts and a real buzz about the show. The whole North Ballachulish crew had a blast, even emerging none the worse for wear after sampling some of the 700 malts on offer at the Pot Still.


    From a personal point of view, my new Dapol 29 recently converted to EM gauge ran very well, the layout itself behaved itself impeccably, the second show in a row where no soldering iron on dry joints was required. But best of all was Ruairi my nearly 4 year old grandson (Now a weegie himself)  taking to operating the layout like a duck to water.








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  8. IMG_20200217_201332.jpg.840a057bb9977a8db8ff5f852ac957a8.jpgTwo new locos are joining the fleet for North Ballachulish's first outing to Scotland this weekend at the Model Rail Scotland show in Glasgow. 5099 (SLW) and 6129 (Dapol) join the loco roster for the first time. 

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  9. 6129 now converted to EM and ready to go into the stock box (along with its new partner in grime 5099) ready for their debut at Model Rail Scotland this weekend. As always the weathering is based on photos and contains the requisite oil stains for the class. Airbrushed grime for the frames and roof followed by dry brushing and weathering powders. IMG_20200217_201332.jpg.c2e1a7a23c4cba851d1202c957a25a25.jpgIMG_20200217_201035.jpg.21ca7a9d41ba26df7da517eaa11f3a6e.jpg

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  10. First board's track laying and point building finished yesterday.






    Spot the Scottish interloper - it was just resting there after converting it to EM gauge yesterday awaiting a coat of grime which was going to be done today after I'd put coupling bars on the other new recruit for North Ballachulish, an Eastfield 24. However before doing that I decided to tidy up the rail ends on the baseboard join, and then got carried away laying track and putting down the sleepers for the loco release crossover. Theres always tomorrow for weathering, but I need to get it done before Glasgow show in just over a weeks time!








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  11. 23 minutes ago, Kylestrome said:


    Is there reason why one can't just pull the axles out of the gear muffs by the required amount?




    Devil and deep blue sea, didn't seem to be any extra leeway by doing that, and there seemed to be a lot more slop as well, I prefer the metal on metal with a dab of loctite.  As a postscript it seems to have done the trick. 

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  12. Yeah I'm aware the actual gear train is pretty much standard, but the actual design of the drive on the axle and the axle itself makes life harder. Its not a simple case of just sticking in a longer replacement 2mm axle into the plastic bush. The axle assembly is basically a plastic bush for insulation between the two metal axles, with an integral moulded gear on it. Now i'm not keen on that because basically you are buggered if it strips! Mind you I know a way round that lol. The metal axles (3mm, Ive had it in the micrometer) itself slots into the bush on each side - they have a 2mm spigot on the end on which the wheels are an interference fit.


    As you can see its not just a simple case of getting a longer 2mm axle and sticking it in the bush, to do the job properly involves getting the club Unimat out, getting a 3mm axle and turning a 2mm spigot on the end of it. Something I probably will do eventually, unless of course the job Ive done now is a total success, in which case, let sleeping dogs lie. Or better still someone bruings out the correct profile spoked wheels for it. The photo below albeit slightly out of focus shows the issue - under OO 14.5mm  BTB the spigot is not visible.




    The other fun issue without a diagram is working out where the vac bag, heating pipe, Multiple working jumper goes. Luckily there are enough photos to follow but for the less research inclined, Dapol really have scored an own goal here.

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  13. Started the conversion of 6129 to EM today.  Of course this means taking bits off so straight away you are up against it due to the lack of parts diagram with the loco. Not being a stranger to voiding warranties on locos, I spent a good 10 - 15 minutes sussing out how it all went together before wielding any tools. Given the complexity of the axles and wheel arrangements I cant see anyone doing a drop in wheelset for these so the only option is the wheel puller.


    The bogie frames are removed by gently pressing in the two lugs at the front of the bogies, just behind the NEM pocket. The frames popped free easily revealing the works beneath, more of which later. Pulling the wheels out they are on split axles with a gear on the plastic centre.






    The wheel pulller has a 2mm spigot which usually works well on Hornby / Bachman / Heljan diesels but this was a bit of an interference fit. To put the tin hat on the turd, there's not a lot of meat left on the axle once you have moved it out around 1mm, so as I found, off pops the wheel when I tried to take the wheel puller off. Needless to say the rest were gripped in the vice before removal of the tool. I also found there was a thin fibre washer on the axle between the wheel and the brass bearings, presumably for some insulation but it really shouldn't need it. Again a diagram may help!




    Although I used the BTB I also double checked with the micrometer to make sure all was in order at 16.5 mil! Given that theres not a lot to grip on, the wheels have had some Loctite 603 on as a double indemnity! The next bit is to move the brake blocks out a bit in the frames to prevent fouling before it all goes back together and I can put a good dollop of muck on the loco via the airbrush, drybrush and weathering powders. I'm working to a deadline of having it ready for Model Rail Scotland so need to get the skates on.


    Its by far the hardest wheel pulling exercise I have done on a diesel, usually it takes me around 15 mins to complete a Bo Bo and having it running again. As usual manufacturers (with the exception of the lads at Accurascale) pay no heed to those who like to model at a more correct gauge, and Dapol have compounded the sin by not putting in a diagram making it all a bit of a stab in the dark. I suspect as well the over complex drive owes its origins to the 22, which correct me if I'm wrong but harks back to the enfant terrible's reign at Dapol, and probably explains why it's like it is, a tad overdone. Having said that its not a bad model at all and tootled along OK on the OO test track and hopefully will look good on North Ballachulish.


    I must admit I was tempted at Doncaster this weekend to get a Two Tone Green 29 as well, but decided, wisely with hindsight, to hold off until I get this one fettled.  £130 is a lot to spend if what you end up with is a loco which needs major surgery to get to run in EM or P4.


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  14. 3 hours ago, woodenhead said:

    That's him, deliberately washed his kids white school t-shirts with his wife's red dress so he could use them as weathering rags on his stock.


    I also think he adjusted the location of his layout to hide his Lancashire roots in Yorkshire, I am sure in the past this was a 'north west' location not somewhere near Pontefract.




    The layout never really had a fixed location until Ben took it on - I was one of the builders of it - although the buildings apart from the low relief building  at the back all are based on Yorkshire prototypes. The low relief one (my build) is based on that at Great Rocks jct in Derbyshire. 

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  15. 12 hours ago, woodenhead said:


    The chap who owns Amalgamated Wagon Works did his usual selling of O Gauge in a tiny space and for a couple of minutes he had me thinking O Gauge round my office at home until common sense prevailed.


    And this is the culprit, Mr Lord, one of the Rochdale reprobates. He's a lot to answer for lol.




    I went across yesterday (and looking out of the window today glad I did) to do a bit but the main objective was to rifle through Model Signal Engineering stock before he disappears off the exhibition circuit and you have to use that user unfriendly website! I also had to see the nice man at Megapoints for one of his excellent servo control boards. Now the track laying and point building on Greenbooth is in sight its time to turn my head to signalling.


    As for the show, Ive never seen Shwt in the flesh before and was really impressed. On the surface it looks almost minimalist but there's a lot of detail and its very well modelled. The other star of the show was Bournemouth West, again a new layout to me and well worth the entry fee alone. Extremely good modelling, well observed stock formations, and those signals, wow. Brilliant.





    Boston Frodsham also caught my attention and I watched it for quite a while.


    Mentions in dispatches too for Farringdon, Kepier Colliery and Brighton East, all seen before but always worth watching again.


    Meanwhile good luck today all.




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  16. 9 hours ago, lezz01 said:

    Hi Andy. You've made a good start on the 3 way mate however, as it stands you are going to have an issue with running through the left hand road. If we assume the crossing on the left is crossing A and the one on the right is crossing B. The upper wing rail of crossing B is too close to the upper closure rail of crossing A. It needs to have at least the same clearance as the crossing flangeway or it will derail any wheelset with the correct back to back measurement. Other than that it's fab.


    Best to sort it out before you get much farther.

    Regards Lez.Z.


    Cheers Lez



  17. And here's today's piece of work. The wonderful set of crossings on the three way at the engine house end of the sorting sidings. All in all about two and a half hours work including the two aborted pieces of rail which I got wrong. There's seven pieces of rail in this assembly, all bent or filed to a rare assortment of angles. I did try pinning the assembly down to the plan, but the ply used by Tim Horn is stern stuff and just laughed off my attempts to pin it securely and fast. It held it to a point but....... I ended up holding it down as well which is great fun when you are wielding a soldering iron! Strangely enough Ive had more trouble building the 1:6 crossing which fits below it.





    Time to give up for the day and come back to it at weekend after two days behind the bar at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival appropriately enough in the old Central Station.





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