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Paul Robertson

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Everything posted by Paul Robertson

  1. With the advancement of the back scene into the townscape I needed to create some building facades to try and link the painted back scene with the main model. The first building I tried was to the left of the station bridge. I thought this might work nicely as a slightly down at heal establishment whose heyday of catering for well to do passengers eager to catch the first ferry of the morning to get into Paris by midday has long since gone. Its clientele are now more likely to be railway workers at of place for the evening, or business travellers needing a quick booking. So I star
  2. The back scene painting has come on from doing the sky last time. I started with painting the hills into the cliff face. I had sketched in a viaduct in the background to suggest a mainline that the station and goods branches end up connecting to. (initial hill painted in. A hint of woodland copses and hedgerows on the hills with scrubby embankments either side of the viaduct) Following this I carried on with the hillscape round the layout until it came to another cliff and the sea. In order to suggest a rolling hill lighter greens were used at the top of the hil
  3. Thanks Steve - I was going to put an mdf cut out piece along the base of the front of the layout to cover up the various bits of wood and filler and paint it black with a curtain to cover the trestle legs. Not sure yet about something across the top as it might get in the way of the eye line. Hope you're feeling better soon
  4. Looking good - I used this technique on my n gauge shunting layout 'Seahaven' and was really pleased with the results.
  5. A busy weekend only left me this evening to make a start on the back scene. I wanted the feel of a breezy summers day with high clouds and decided the impressionist look would likely be the best approach. So it was out with the acrylics and lots of big sploshes of very light blues (I had to lighten the first application as it felt too dark and rich and then using streaks of white brushed in with a bit of sky blue and a small amount of grey to give depth and shadow to the clouds. Here is the result so far: (overall effect) (a closer look)
  6. Topping and tailing some details on the layout with the completion of the permanent way. Since we are in the southern region it only seemed right to put a third rail running down into the station. Due to the small nature of n gauge I didn't worry too much with the detail. I painted some 1mm styrene strip dark brown then cut a ramp into the ends. Having completed that the top of the '3rd rail' was painted silver. (third rail installed) (and from the other side) I also decided to put the extra lighting in the other high mast by the Linkspan gett
  7. With the completion of ballasting on the upper section of the layout yesterday I decided to get the security fence up between network rail and port authority land. This was laser cut palisade fencing from scale model scenery. Having painted it a suitable olive drab green on the sprue I predrilled holes with my hand drill and glued down. (security fencing in place) I had some further signage to put around the tunnel mouth along with a temporary crossing for road / rail vehicles at the tunnel mouth for maintenance. (Road / rail crossing and sign
  8. This weekend saw a milestone reached on my layout as I finished off the last of the permanent way with more das clay and a final ballasting of the station branch line. It certainly feels like an achievement covering the last of the plywood after 5 months of solid work. The first area to be done was the station layover siding. This will be for boat train stock and the odd civil engineers train. I therefore wanted the siding to have a similar well worn feel to the lower yard and used the same das clay technique with fine ballast sprinkled on then pressed in. (das clay rolled o
  9. More detailing around the lower yard today having painted the track work yesterday. (das clay and ballast on the lower yard) (trackwork painted) The first detail around the yard were more crash barriers to prevent vehicles driving onto the tracks (barrier by the parking bay) The next detail was point levers. I made these by bending some 1mm brass tube with plyers and sticking them in some 3mm thick balsa. (point lever installed) I then got on with more signs around the yard includi
  10. Many thanks Steve. Trying to give that heavy hand of officialdom feel that these places have now without over egging it. Glad you like it
  11. So today I carried on the road cone production line as well as putting more signage about the place and making a couple of extra stop barriers for the lower Linkspan. (cone and barrier production line) I also added some more bases to some of the cones to make it look like they have been stacked up on each other. The next detail was pre-bought. Some grit bins from scale model scenery. (a pack of salt / grit bins. I didn't feel able to scratchbuild these at n gauge) I placed these at the top of the ramp and at the ends
  12. Thanks. I've found by sticking on some extra bases I can create some convincing stacks and its a lot cheaper than buying off the shelf! Just need a steady hand getting the white stripe on.
  13. Having done the detail up against the cliff base I thought I could build the parapet fence on top of the retaining wall. I was wanting to create something like the below: (standard boxy parapet fencing) I couldn't find anything off the shelf so it was back to scratchbuilding with plasticard strips. I painted the strips up in the colour I wanted before predrilling holes for stanchions. These were glued in place before the long horizontal strips were stuck on. I used thin balsa as spacers to get the strip heights correct. (stanchions
  14. A bit of detail at the base of the cliffs today with crushed chalk added and some more signage and traffic management. I wanted to make some water filled traffic barriers like this. (this is the sort of thing I was after) I started with some trusty balsa cutting into three strips and sticking it together. (balsa strips stuck together) Having stuck the strips together I chopped them into scale 1m sections before painting them white and red (painted red and white. I then drew two black spots on each si
  15. Class 66 bringing ferry wagons onto the Linkspan headshunt ready to be backed onto the train ferry at 'Seahaven'
  16. Having finished my Christmas Dinner duties, boxing day allowed me a little modelling time. I had bought some styrene I beam some time back to create armco barriers to protect the Linkspan headshunt from wayward vehicles. Having completed the French drain and ground plain I thought I could give it a go. There are several ready made armco type barriers on the market but you are always paying a premium for not trying to scratchbuild so I thought I would give it a go. Initially I tried sticking the cutout stanchions onto the barrier then using it to mark out where holes were to be han
  17. The past couple of weeks have been taken up with all things other than railways. The family invented an xmas card game which I needed to produce on the computer, and the emergency volunteer group I run has been involved in covid response recently. It hasn't been all quiet on the modelling front however. I completed the lighting on the ferry which now includes navigation and flood lighting. (lighting now on board) The train deck has three white leds to give that well lit, blazing light, feel (train deck now let up) The next thing on
  18. It must be the inner geek in me but I've always found gantry signs interesting structures and have wanted to model one. This wasn't going to be a motorway gantry sign as the prototypes I've seen at Dover are a thinner a frame type structure than the massive monolithic structures put up by Highways England. (prototype signage at Dover with a frame structural supports) I started off making the sign face out of a piece of balsa sheet. I wanted this lit as per prototype so needed to build this in at an early stage (main sign face structure complete
  19. Thanks to your excellent link I have now worked out that in fact I'm running my lighting via a hybrid series / parallel circuit! Who knew?! certainly not me when I was stumbling about in the metaphorical and physical dark! I guess that's why model railways are set at 12V and 1 amps so the electronically challenged can't kill themselves when experimenting with the dark science of layout electronics for the first time (Although I had the rather neat experience of using my body to complete a circuit when holding either end of the wires in my fingers with the transformer still on, a very weak ligh
  20. If a knew what that meant I could tell you! To me if I wire something up and it works I regard that as a victory! Seriously though, I think I had been wiring up in series hence the ever diminishing returns of light where as now I believe parallel as there is direct power and return to the transformer for a maximum of 3 leds. Is that right? You wouldn't believe my father was an electrical engineer. He'll be shaking his head when he reads this!!
  21. Having learnt my lessons from yesterday I carried on with the lighting. Trying to get as much wiring done as possible so it could be hidden by the remainder of the landscaping. The first item tackled was the Linkspan winding house. I had left the roof removable when I had first made it to allow lighting to be fitted later on. I wanted a white light shining down to illuminate the bridge immediately beneath the winding house along with my first try with fibre optics to provide some lighting around the walkway. (hand drilling holes for the fibre optics)
  22. Hi Steve. They are 300mm 5mm diameter brass rods which represent a 45m high light mast. Pretty tall but about right for prototype (found a manufacturers website that had a case study on Dover harbour which was useful to gain some insight). Some of these things can get up to 60m!! The pipe should really taper as it goes up but I haven't found a way to do that so it looks a bit thick at the top. Although I need that thickness to fit the wires in. Also the bottle tops are a bit overscale in diameter fo a light cluster but to be honest I need that to cover up the LED and resistor at the top.
  23. With my initial success of my high lighting mast under my belt I set forth today to install a lot more lighting. I wanted the lighting under the bridge to represent sodium lighting which is typical of the prototype so installed a couple of LEDs in there and did my best to cover up the wiring from view. (yellow lights installed in under bridge) So far so good. Next was the Linkspan proper. I wanted white light on this as looking at prototype night shots from Dover it's all white lighting on the linkspans to give the best light in these dangerous areas.
  24. Not much time to progress over the last few days but before I did too much more I wanted to get some lighting in to ensure I could cover up the wiring fairly easily. My first go at the high masts was with a yellow LED to represent a sodium bulb. Unfortunately having tried it out there wasn't enough light coming out of it for the effect I wanted and I didn't have enough room in my brass rod to get any more LEDs. Initial trial with a yellow bulb. Can you spot the light?!) For the top of the light mast I tried a cut down bottle top. The first one whils
  25. Many thanks - The cliffs are a little close to the road and railway and a bit too shear an angle compared to prototype but that's the compromise with a 1ft wide layout. You are obviously a mind reader as I am thinking of placing a a rockfall prevention fence on the cliff similar to this: This barrier at Dover has since been replaced with a galvanised steel H beam and galvanised mesh. Just trying to think of a mesh that will look good at n gauge. You can see the more realistic cliff angle and road setback in the image above. (More modern catch fencing
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