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jamest last won the day on October 30 2010

jamest had the most liked content!

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  1. Looking forward to it. See you Saturday.
  2. Hi Steve, Thanks for the kind words. I've only just realised that I was following your layout metcalfe yard - great layout - I'll keep an eye out for your other layout too. I've used the Gaugemaster polarity switches (DCC80) - you can one in the second picture of the underside in my post above, fed by a green/white/yellow wire. It detects the need to switch polarity as the loco runs over the point before the chip/controller senses a problem. They are about £5 to £7 each so more expensive than setting up a micro switch against something that moves - but it is much easier in my opinion. Two bus wires (green and white) and the frog feed (yellow) in....and it deals with it all. Edit - this method will only work with DCC. I had started with seep point motors - which have a polarity switching function - but after ballasting they didn't work too well (which is more my fault than theirs) - and to be honest I prefer the feel of manual operation. None of my layouts are that complicated! cheers, James
  3. jamest


    Hi, Managed to miss this one so far. Fantastic layout and you have made great progress in a relatively short time. I like your choice of buildings, their placement, and how you have blended the scenery into the back scene. Lots of nice BR Blue action too - I've got a lot of BR blue stock myself but have been modelling earlier stuff recently - makes me want to go back to this run down, sparse era! Thanks for sharing. Regards, James
  4. Hi, The layout looks fantastic and I can only echo others comments. I've built a few layouts and had the 'next one' bug - and on at least one occasion moved a layout on too soon. Have a good think before you do. But we all have space and money restraints! Thanks for sharing the build. All the best, James
  5. Hi all, Actually next is point control, not coal facilities! I have not referred to this since stating I would be using seep solenoids in my first post. Well I got them set up and they were working ok, but after ballasting they were not as reliable. Now this is obviously mostly my fault (if not all), but it prompted me to re-think and not use them going forward. I do like the feel of manual wire in the tube - and it is very straightforward and reliable. Therefore I am now using gaugemaster polarity switches to deal with the frogs and seperate wire in the tube for the point control. One of the things I would like to add is the ability to control the points from the front at home, and the back at exhibitions (if I ever get that far). So to get this ability - and the option to remove the front operation when required - I have come up with the following. I don't claim it as my idea as it is a combination of the materials I have around and the experience I have gained on here.... So the wire push pull to the top of the picture is for the back of the layout (it is earth wire stripped from spare wire I have lying around) - and the middle choc block allows me to pull the wooden dowel from the front by screwing it down on the wire and the empty tube inserted in the end of the wooden dowel. I can remove the wooden dowel if desired, leaving only small holes at the front of the layout: NOTE: I am aware I need to be careful about shorting/touching the bus wires - it is not as close as it seems below and I intend to be safer still by adding tape to insulate locally. So the loop pull is at the back... And the dowels protrude at the front... It takes a bit of fine tuning to get everything working as resistance free as possible - but I am very pleased with the results. Cheers, James
  6. Hi, You've got to be careful you don't get pulled around by others ideas....but I hope to start something like this and I plan to have a similar track-plan and an island platform (maybe even with through running and a bridge over the right hand side) - so I agree with d&h. but like I said...it is your layout - good luck with the planning/build. regards, James
  7. Hi all, Thanks for the advice on the colours and crane. The crane will reside on the loading platform because, as suggested, it s proportions fit better. I've also to weather the track and hard standing. I have previously dusted with an Airbrush to get dirty ballast in and around the track but I always leave it too late and find it difficult to a) get a good effect and b) not cover everything else I don't want to! So this time I have experimented with applying a thinned down dirty track colour with a pipette in the centre of the track. It spreads out a little and enables me to keep the area inbetween lines cleaner. I know some actually mix in colour with their ballast mix - I might consider that next time as I am quite pleased with the effect. You'll see I've also started to add grass clumps in random areas. The eagle eyed among you will notice that the Provinder store has morphed into a good shed on a platform. I've managed to accumulate many resin building options over the years and I feel I prefer this one - it has been painted in the same western colours used elsewhere and weathered a bit. It will be planted on the platform better when I have detailled the interior and placed thing inside. Next is the coal facilities... All the best, James
  8. jamest


    Fantastic modelling - the pictures of the Jinty by the signal box are amazing. Adding the shading and picking out the detail of the figures makes a real difference - the rest of your modelling is pretty good as well! My eye was immediately drawn to the red rag held by the member of the train crew in the jinty photo - an example of a small detail really adding to the overall effect. Thanks for sharing - plenty of inspiration here for me - I'm planning out some coal facilities myself at the moment and this is very useful. Regards, James
  9. I can only echo the other comments. Really like this one and enjoying watching your progress. Regards, James
  10. Hi Chris, Thanks for the advice - I prefer option 1. I've repainted in western region colours to better match what I want to run. I had intended to run mostly stream but I have several green diesels that I would like to run too. I have a green class 20, 33, 35 and 25 and a class 105 DMU. On the steam side of things I have a jinty, pannier, 3MT, and a 2MT Ivatt 2-6-0. I like to get the era and motive power about right - but I claim rule 1 on whether a certain loco might ever have been seen down Devon way! regards, James
  11. Hi all, I'm after a bit of advice on the positioning of my yard crane.. I'm unsure whether the best postion is on the loading platform, or at ground level... On the platform (I favour this one): On the floor serving the other siding - the provinder store could well be closer with the coal on the other side at the buffer stop. Or in this postion on the platform - but I feel this surface is better served as a place trailers can back up against for loading - which would put the crane in the way? Any suggestions greatfully received! Regards, James
  12. Hi all, Here are the pictures from the re-paint to western region colours.... I've also added more ground cover to the yard area - I purchased some fine stone at Trainwest and instead of laying and flooding with diluted pva 'a la ballasting' I applied pva neat to the surface and sieved the fine stone over the top. I'm really pleased with the results. It is probably 'overscale' on the surface roughness but gives the colour mix and texture I like about other peoples layouts on here. The gound cover greenery is also taking shape and I have added the peco fencing behind the loading platform. I've also shamelessly plonked planted a Bachmann loading gauge! I want to weather the ballast and siding a little - but I am worried/wary as I always seem to go too far and make it too dirty - but it looks a little clean at the moment. Thats all for now. Regards, James
  13. Hi Marc, When you say "remove some of the loose ballast" and start ballasting proper..... Do you have some ballast in and around the track when you are spraying? Apologies if I've missed something you've already explained. Regards, James
  14. Hi, Yes reading around I think a re-paint is in order - I picked up some options at the weekend and will be testing them to see which I like best for the chocolate colour. I have downloaded the scalescenes Western region station signs and posters, etc too. Regards, James
  15. Thanks Chaps, I have other Heljan hymeks and I noted their wheel arrangement - there is a small 'boss' diameter on one side as the axle enters the wheel. As others have said it might not be a problem, but I have re-arranged them as per the factory examples anyway. I've not been brave enough to try another chip again yet - but I will watch out for the chip/blanking plate socket. If I'm honest I could well have pushed down on the socket while I was hacking away at the underside! That would explain it working ok before my intervention. I did notice that the blanking plate and chip where relatively loose fits in the loco socket anyway. I might return it to my local shop (where I got it) explaining all this as he is very good with second hand stuff - and he was not sure how 'good' the loco was when selling it. thanks again. Regards, james
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