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john dew

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  1. Hi Brian Thanks to you and your colleagues for organising this poll. I run two autotrains on Granby both with Hornby trailers. One of the trains has two carriages with the loco in the centre. Is this correct or should it be loco plus two carriages? Regardless I would be delighted to be able to replace them with updated models. It would be good and I suspect prototypical to run more than one design although I suspect only one will ever be upgraded So I will be happy with any of: 5. 6. and or 7 Best wishes
  2. Hi Geoff Good to hear from you. Glad you like the way Granby has developed…..I guess its now a mature layout although there still a few square inches of real estate to be filled! Are you still building Mangarh or do you have a new venture? I think Zimo and possibly Lenz chips have some form of kadee shuffle option. I am still a RR&Co enthusiast and the software now has a “limited distance” train operation …..in combination with Stay Alives this now makes coupling and uncoupling moves barely noticeable and super reliable Best wishes
  3. Back to the storage turntable where the sidings are now fully operational. To complete the scene the rear wall still needs a low relief warehouse Veering for a moment off topic. The train the Down line is something of a rarity on Granby.....a short train of Horseboxes on their way to Chester Races. The next shot shows the Warehouse strip in place and everything weathered. Separately cut ledges and a parapet add a sense of depth even though there is very little room. Finally with everything finished the Wright's Factory can be put back in position to conceal the light switch The autotrain can resume its journeys to and from Canal Street Halt: To finish a couple of shots from the Autotrain looking down at the Canal: The next project is on the other side of the room In the left hand corner, just above the Star and Dragon, you can see the Roof and Upper Floor of the Canal Warehouse There are more little people to be painted for the hotel frontage along with a scenic retaining wall but the big design challenge is to integrate the warehouse with the platform area at the side and rear of the hotel: I am afraid the warehouse has been like this for almost a decade. Its amazing what you can get away with- courtesy of the Affinity cropping tool! But now it is decision time. Somehow I have to close off the rear and incorporate it into the narrow triangular platform area. I have some ideas but need to test them out with mock ups. Apart from these projects I hope to fully utilize the storage turntable with a series of commuter routines ........it should be a busy fall. Regards from Vancouver
  4. Hi Brian 5, 6 and 11 for me It will be good to bring my B Sets up to the standard of the Hornby Collet 4 car sets. I like the idea of adding a Hawksworth as a strengthener to the latter. Thanks again to you and your team......and Rob of course
  5. This weeks project was to extend the Scalescene wall behind the Storage yard Turntable: I have made a few of these in the past so progress was relatively fast: Typical Scalescene kit.....lots of laminating and you finish up with with an attractive and very robust wall. Its also very adaptable so, as here, it can be built to fit a specific length There was a certain amount of fiddling at the base to accommodate the edge of the turntable. Now it just needs weathering and bedding in. The final job is to build an extremly low relief Warehouse to hide the remaining exposed strip of wall. I think that I will make it similar in design to its neighbour but not as high.........partly to save time and effort but also because I think a height difference will be more interesting. Apart from that I still want to have a glimpse of the old Townscene back papers. I also found time to run some trains. Here is Collett Goods 3217, with the Branch Coal train, crossing the Shropshire Union Canal at Richard's Wharf: You may be wondering about the motionless Austin Threeway as the train rumbles by? There is actually a short line up of vehicles at the Lower Wharf Locks where Canal Street narrows to a single lane I thought that I might take some more shots of the canal next week. However, first I need to do a bit of road sweeping and canal dusting! Regards from Vancouver
  6. Hi Neal Hope you get it sorted ok Once you have finished programming there should be an option to synchronise the tracks at start up Best wishes
  7. Thanks Neal. You are right, Granby is non prototypical in so many ways I really shouldnt fret about a TT. Particularly when I have lived happily with its counterpart on the otherside of the gangway for the past 5 years. The Turn control unit is remarkably effective and perfect for my operations. I have to confess I am not the tidiest workman. Next job is to tidy what is supposed to be my office area and is currently covered with jars of Woodland Scenic's products! I can relate to your dilemma about inspection pits. I had them on the turn table storage roads of my previous layout. They were a bit of a pain to install and certainly limited adjusting the track connection to the TT. When finished they looked great but were rarely seen because locos were mostly standing over them. I didnt bother with Granby III although I did contemplate indicating their presence with a combination of metal and timber covers..........this might work for you. Glad you liked the cameo. The Modelu figures from the shed pack are perfect for this sort of thing. Best wishes
  8. Back to the Storage yard turntable. As a reminder, here it is just after installation And close of play last night........... I just need to build an extension to the Scalescene retaining wall at the right and its all done: I realise it doesnt resemble a GWR table....or, I imagine, even an LMS one! I had thought, for a nano second, of cutting off the side platforms and replacing the side fencing with girders. After all the trauma with this table that would have been a bridge too far. This incidentally is how the bridge looked straight out of the box:, What a difference a coat of black paint and some weathering can make Nevertheless I am rather envious of @Neal Ball and his splendid new Turntable which does look exactly how a GWR table should look. Unfortunately my turntables have to be fully supported by RR&Co. Furthermore I am committed to Fleischman Turncontrol units So I have to sacrifice appearance and rather noisy movement in return for ultra reliable indexing and efficient automated performance. Back to the scenery ....the coal stage and water crane from the previous set up have been re-installed Both are venerable Mikes models........The coaling crane must be 20 years old, it was a feature of Granby I The mess hut first appeared a decade ago. It was built to hide one of the point motors that switched the original TT Now somewhat modified it conceals a rats nest of wiring .....hence the platform New stop blocks forn all the storage roads and a load of detail added to the mess hut These guys are from the new Modelu Shed Pack To finish this is how the scene might have looked in 1948 Regards from Vancouver
  9. Hi Brian I would buy one of 3, 4 or 6………. No particular preference Not sure whether this counts as a vote or an informative abstention! I will pass on the sleepers Thanks again for all the work involved Regards
  10. I know they used the 2251 boiler but maybe that was because they wanted to eliminate the dome? I notice that Locomotion refers to Sir James Milne, GWR General Manager ( not Chairman) "requesting" that the design be a modernised version of the 57xx class. I knew Hawksworth was responsible for the design. I think I was mistaken in assuming that the original request was directed to Collett. I had forgotten he retired in 1941. Thank you for commenting, I will amend my original post
  11. Dining Car Poll My preference 1 2 3 Due to space considerations I would probably only buy one of the above. If only one were made I would prefer it to be 3 Thanks again for all the work that has gone into making these mini polls so informative. Best wishes
  12. Ballasting and weathering the storage turntable continues. Meantime here are some shots of Granby's latest loco Bachmann's 0-6-0 Pannier Tank.........here it is straight out of the box: This news is not exactly hot off the press. The model was finally released in January, after an interminable wait. It took me a further 3 months to convince myself it was ok for Granby. Then summer etc intervened before I was able to start weathering and detailing. It was only last week that she was finally ready for service! The 94xx class was designed as a replacement for the long serving 57xx pannier tanks. The design criteria included increased power along with a more "modern" appearance. Allegedly the GWR General Manager "requested" that the CME get rid of the "old fashioned" dome. Here is a comparison: Although over 200 locos were produced only 10 were made before nationalistion. Of these, only 9408 ventured north of Watford...... to Oxley (Wolverhampton). There is no evidence it ever got to Chester or Wrexham, hence my hesitation about it being ok for Granby. The model received very favourable reviews so I decided it may have spent a week or so at Granby as the station pilot. I then promptly ordered the wrong etched plates 9407.......so thats top of the to do list. I have tried to make the weathering reflect less than a year in service Light dusting of mud/rust below the running plates on brake pads etc. Roof and running plates painted with matt black and light dusting of soot Modelu Headlamps and crew added. It is great being able to slip the lamps directly on to their irons. Smokebox painted matt black/steel mix Touch of steel paint on some steps where paint has been pretend chipped off by Modelu boots. Inside of bunker rusted. Fire Irons and real coal added. DCC requires a Next 18 chip. Accessing the PCB involves removing the body which is very easy. I learned from the Youchoos install guide (a really useful resource) that there are easily accessible solder points on the PCB for a Stay Alive which was a big plus because you cant directly attach Stay Alive to the economy Zimo Next 18 Performance without Stay Alive was not great but once I squeezed a couple of Tantulums in and set CV 56 to 22 (its a coreless motor) it was stunning......very happy camper. Its a gorgeous model. The detail is superb. Like the prototype its very heavy and handles long heavy trains with ease. Regards from Vancouver
  13. Hi Neal Welcome home! Thats a very lengthy saga with the TT. You must have found it very frustrating and you still have a formidable todo list before it is all sorted. Thanks for posting the video. The bridge movement seems very smooth and much quieter than my Fleischmanns! How much manual intervention was there? I assumed the programme stopped it just before the exit track and then moved it slowly to the track. Once it stopped one could see the relatively minute mis alignment. This mis alignment seemed to be consistent so a very slight adjustment of the exit track position should solve it ? Looking forward to Part 2 when the polarity switch is operating Best wishes
  14. Hi Mikkel I guess the same guy who didnt check the road was in good nick before taking a load of photos Glad you like the photos
  15. Thanks Paul. You are correct, of course it should be “Dai”. That was careless of me. I will try to remember to include some Dais with the next batch!
  16. Thank you Neal ….My that was quick….I hadnt even finished editing the title! You may be right about Dave. Good job for him that I havent finished painting the policeman! I am glad you popped in because I wanted to ask which of the Heljan and Dapol railcard you like the most? I am particularly interested in reliable running. Best wishes
  17. Thanks for all the ticks guys, its nice to be back I spent most of last week painting and ballasting the turntable storage sidings. I broke the monotony by painting some Modelu figures: The front of the Talbot has looked rather strange since its opening six months ago. Plenty of Cars and Taxis but until last week.... no people! Granby Town Council have carried out some much need road repairs since this photo was taken. Moving left to right some rather cruel close ups Two chauffeurs converted from WWI soldiers Their chat is about to be interrupted......Colonel Sir David Powell MC rtd. has finished his lunch: Of course, his tie really should have navy stripes (Royal Welch Fusiliers) but there are limits to my painting I am afraid that the Head Porter looks a bit like an Austrian general. I wanted him to have a top hat to go with his frock coat. Sadly couldnt find a suitable figure so settled for a Victorian stationmaster and some gold paint. Struggled to think of a legend for this gentleman. He is too fashionably dressed to be a commercial traveler, and they dont stay at the Talbot. Perhaps a Sales Director up from London? No problems with this guy. Its Dave Thomas emerging from the Public Bar. Looking rather enviously at the toffs and their posh motors before crossing Chester Road to catch a Crossville Bus. To finish, a couple of shots from the Box Brownie: I hope you enjoyed my flights of fancy. Next week, not before time, some loco shots Regards from Vancouver where we are enjoying some much needed rain
  18. Thanks Mikkel You omitted the heat dome….which has returned…..with the smoke ……certainly been a summer to remember! Regarding Fleischmann, I was told that some of their H0 track tooling had worn out and it had been decided, no doubt by Rocco, that they would not replace it but concentrate on N gaude Best wishes
  19. Thanks Tinker.......in this weather I am glad to be back down here in the cool. How is your 12" to the foot building getting on? I do hope everything is on schedule. Best wishes
  20. Thanks Neal that is very kind of you. I have been remiss in not congratulating you on your new turntable. You did a super job with the painting. I am rather envious of the appearance. It is a far more accurate representation of a GWR turntable than mine. I am afraid I had to sacrifice appearance for functionality. I have tried to eliminate the more obvious traces of its continental origin but it still looks nothing like a GW table. Is yours working now? I am interested in how it deals with indexing Best wishes
  21. Option 1 I would definitely buy one of each Thank you Brian and congratulations for drafting such a concise and persuasive argument Best wishes
  22. Hi Brian Its good to hear from you but I am so sorry to hear that your hip is still painful and preventing you from "playing trains". I know how frustrating that can be. I also share your dislike of having to crawl under the layout to fix something.......lithe and flexible are not adjectives that spring to mind. There is no way you can work around the stalled train or recruit a helper......its a bit far for me to pop over. I envy your A/C. The Railway room is in the basement and its pleasantly cool here but right now the mercury is climbing upstairs. Its unusual to be writing on here to someone in the same time zone and near identical weather I do hope your hip continues to mend and it will not be too long before the trains are running again Best wishes
  23. Thank you Richard I am glad to say the TT is behaving impeccably. They are actually very very reliable. Malfunctions are usually self induced. You may recall , about 5-7 years ago I managed to spill a jar of ballast on the TT on the other side of the layout. Once I corrected that unforced error it has run perfectly and accurately without ever a moments hesitation
  24. Thank you Tony thats really very kind of you. Its good to be back!
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