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Found 15 results

  1. Have moved into a new abode, well, for days off and short holidays until I retire from parish life, a new layout has had to be planned. It had to be LMS 1930s and as I hadn't the 25' of room length I had in the former home's loft, something more cramped was needed. The longest side is 210" approx. and the short 165" approx. I loaded up a 1922 version of the OS 25" series of Buxton into Templot (thank goodness for Martin)and was surprised it fit into the long side of the new railway room (an upstairs bedroom.) Some rearrangement of the room will be required like knocking down a partition wall, removing a door and some cupboards.
  2. Having some time on my hands, I have been working my way through my stash of 4mm scale wagon kits, starting with some pre-grouping examples. As may be evident, my enthusiasm is for the Midland Railway, so first up, a couple of Midland wagons: an 8 ton high-sided wagon to D299 (left) and an 8 ton low-sided goods wagon to D305 (right). These are both built from Slater’s kits, nice and straightforward so long as one is aware of the major pitfall with the D299: if the sides and ends are assembled to each other and the floor first, one finds that the solebars are too tall and stick out below the headstocks in a most unprotypical manner. Better to fix the solebars to the floor first; then add the ends, lining the bottom of the headstocks up with the bottom of the solebars. The sides are fixed in place last with some careful fettling of the notches in the ends of the siderails so that the corner plates line up. This does mean that the floor is too high, i.e. the inside depth of the wagon is about 0.5 mm less than it should be but for a loaded wagon that’s irrelevant. The kits for the D342 coke wagon and D357 covered goods wagon have the same issue (but the height of the floor really doesn’t matter unless you want to model a van with an open door…) but oddly, the D305 wagon didn’t seem too. Nevertheless I built it in the same sequence. On the D299 wagon, the right-angle bend in each corner plate is rounded by a mixture of skrawking with the craft knife and gentle needle-filing. There probably ought to be a square of metal overlapping the top two planks of the door on the brake side of the wagon, to protect the woodwork when the door is dropped against the brake gear – I should have photographed the non-brake side! On the D305 wagon, I’ve added the door stops on the ends of the drop sides, carved from 60 thou square microstrip. The solebars have some moulded-on detail which is in the wrong place for most wagons, as far as I can tell from my treasured copy of Bob Essery’s “Midland Wagons” Vol. 1. The moulded numberplate is to the left of the V-hanger whereas photos show it consistently to the right. The builder’s plate is too near the right-hand end; it should be just to the right of the crown plate for the right-hand axleguard. Both these are scraped off; the transfers represent them adequately. (I forgot this on the side shown of the D299 wagon.) The square plate that on the prototype says “TO CARRY 8 TONS” (Essery calls this the ticket plate) is in the right place but the little rectangular spring-clip thing – which I would suppose is the label clip – is too far to the left. I’ve left it as it wouldn’t survive an attempt to relocate it; I don’t think I could make a satisfactory replacement, and something is better than nothing! Below the solebar, things are what I venture to call pseudo-finescale. I could cut everything off and replace with brass but haven’t quite had the patience. The W-irons are a bit thick compared to some other plastic kits; skrawking the outside edges to make them thinner helps without weakening the structure – most of the material is in the spring and axlebox anyway. Axleboxes are drilled out 2 mm diameter and gently countersunk 3 mm diameter for Gibson bearings. The inner V-hanger is very carefully thinned by skrawking – and then repaired… The outer V-hanger and brake lever are a single moulding. I thin the V-hanger as much as I dare but it’s still the least satisfactory feature on the solebar: over-thick and lacking bolt-heads. On these two wagons I drilled a 0.6 mm diameter hole in the back of the outer V-hanger, through the bottom of the inner V-hanger, and through the middle of the brake gear moulding and used a piece of plastic rod to connect them all together. The final touch – actually done before fitting the brakes – is to cut away the moulded safety loops and replace with microstrip, so daylight shows through. The 3-link couplings are Slater’s. The wheels are Gibson 00. There is a pretention that one day I’ll upgrade to P4 so the alignment of the brakes is a bit ambiguous. An advantage of modelling this period is that with brakes on one side only, I’ve lots of spare brake mouldings! I painted the D299 wagon Humbrol matt 64 and the D305 Precision LMS goods wagon grey, on a Halfords white undercoat in both cases. In the flesh I can’t tell the difference but the photo shows the Humbrol to be bluer; I think I prefer the Precision colour but the Humbrol is easier to brush-paint. Below the solebar is Humbrol matt 33 – detail stands out better in the flesh than in the photo; some weathering would no doubt help. These two kits came from the Coopercraft stand at ExpoEM 2014 and so unlike the old boxed Slater’s kits, didn’t include Pressfix transfers. I had long ago bought several sets of the Methfix version that Slater’s used to stock as a separate item. I’ve not used Methfix before. Whilst I’m reasonably happy with the end result, it was a bit of a trial. Things float arounf too much for too long! I started with the recommended meths/water mix, which worked well enough for the large letters though I followed up with MicroSol to get the transfers to bed into the planking grooves. The tare weights were the real nightmare; wandering off all over the place – there’s no backing film to hold the numbers in position relative to each other. I was very glad that on the Midland, painted wagon numbers didn’t come in until 1917! I finished off (for now) with Humbrol spray-can matt varnish. The Midland built 62,000 D299 high sided wagons between 1882 and 1900 – that works out at 12 per working day (on a five-and-a-half day working week). That’s about half the Midland’s goods stock. For an Edwardian period Midland layout, I reckon every fourth wagon I build should be one of these! (Allowing 50% Midland, 25% PO, 25% other companies – possibly too high a proportion of the latter.) There’s at least one in any early 20th-century goods yard photo – no pre-grouping modeller should be without several. I’ve read the various discussions on here about the current unavailability of these kits and have no wish to start another; the kit has been around for 40 years now and has its defects. Would that some enterprising manufacturer stepped forward to produce an up-to-date version! High-quality kits abound for many obscure pre-grouping wagons – the D299 wagon is the MOST UNOBSCURE item of pre-grouping rolling stock! The low-sided D305 wagons were not as numerous – although still running into the thousands by my early Edwardian period, with more built right up to 1915 – and consequently surviving longer. The dimensions and construction are generic enough that the kit could be used to represent several other companies’ wagons, if I could bring myself to do so from my meagre stock…
  3. Hi all, This is a bit of a diversion but hopefully one which will prove an enjoyable foray into slightly unknown territory. I have for a while been drawn to scales larger than 7mm and have decided to dip my toe into Gauge One. Right from the start I will say this is 1/32 or 9.525mm:ft rather than 10mm to the foot. I have the space to ‘go outside’ with it but probably won’t get ‘planning permission’! So I’m consigning myself at the moment to a stand alone showcase model. In this case a Midland double bolster wagon. Reasonably simple construction and with a log load should look quite charming. I plan on presenting it in absolute ex-works condition so no weathering at all. This is an excerpt from Midland Wagons Vol 1 and shows one built to Dia 339. Construction has tentatively begun by machining up sections of timber for (top to bottom) solebars, headstocks, sides, ends, strip for end supports, strip for underframe bracing, blanks for the bolsters. I’m waiting for some 2mm laser ply to arrive before cutting the floor with engraved plank grooves. I’ve also raided Slaters stores department for the tricky bits ie wheels, axleboxes, springs, buffers, brake gear and W iron etches and couplings. So it should be a fairly straightforward introduction for me. Unsure at the moment how much accurate detail will be made beneath the wagon, we shall see. And lastly as you can see I have purchased a length of track and started on a display base edged in oak. This level of detail really deserves careful painting and weathering even of the track. Finally my thanks go to @Compound2632 for his invaluable help needed with sketches and construction notes even before starting to cut timber! More anon.
  4. So, continuing the ‘Midland in...’ theme, I have now had a think about Bristol’s successor and here it is - Midland in Tewkesbury...! As you may be aware, if I had kept hold of Bristol then I would have made room for it by ‘plugging’ it in next to Midland in Birmingham (also known as Monk’s Gate/London/Nottingham. I confuse myself...). As Bristol is sold now, Tewks will plug in instead. It’s broadly based on and inspired by the little engine shed and line that carried further on down to the quay, weaving through various warehouses, maltings and other extremely photogenic buildings to be found on Google images. Here is a sketch plan - my first thoughts are that there is too much track but as it’s supposed to look cramped I think it will be ok, I’m just not convinced this is the final plan yet. And visually there’s not enough narrow ‘weaving’ of cobbled track going on through the warehouses. Anyway, without further a-do, here’s the plan... Your thoughts most welcome...
  5. Hi All I'd appreciate some confirmation (or otherwise) on these two photographs which were included in a job lot bought at local auction. I think they are both ex Midland Railway Kirtley double-framed 700 class 0-6-0s. The letters 'LMS' can just be discerned on the cab side in photo No.19. If I'm right (even though they have different cabs) Will Adams excellent 'Locomotives we have lost' tells me that just one of these survived into BR service with round topped Johnson boiler and Salter safety valves - LMS No. 22630: BR 58110 - withdrawn from Derby November 1951. Could pic 20 be that? Any idea on the location? Residential buildings behind pic 20; workshops behind pic 19?
  6. I thought I'd jump on the bandwagon, so-to-speak, and start a workbench thread of my own. I've not long started a blog, too, which can be found here Mark's Workbench but I fear that the blog entries may get a bit out of hand with the nitty-gritty of what I do, and more often don't, manage to achieve! The new idea is to post an entry for each completed project on the Blog with a short bio of how it came about, and then hopefully add a link back to the starting point in this thread. But we'll see how that pans out..... One of the more difficult aspects of model-making is the standard to work to. Unfortunately, I'm not a fast worker - continental drift is quicker - which means that while I strive for excellence I don't want to take forever to achieve it! Thus, I've reached the point where my specification for A N Other Goods Wagon will be: EM Gauge Etched axleguards with whitemetal, plastic or 3D-printed axlebox/spring assemblies Rigid underframe (fit inside bearing compensation unit if necessary) Improved brakegear Sprung buffers Couplings - ? - I haven't decided yet but they must be unobtrusive Currently on the bench is one GWR Diagram V5 Covered Goods Wagon (is that a goods wagon that's covered or a wagon for covered goods?). It's the good old CooperCraft kit. The body was assembled as normal, and the floor fitted in the designed place, which in these kits is actually much higher above rail level that the floor would really be. I did invert the floor, though, so as to provide a flat surface for mounting the MJT axleguards. The floor itself was slightly narrow, so a thin fillet of styrene was fitted to prevent the sides bowing inward. Some hefty nuts were then superglued to the inside of the floor to provide weight, and a couple of braces were subesquently fitted across the top of the sides, again to prevent them bowing inward. http:// The etched axleguards were folded up as rigid units, and as my soldering is messy, small dobs of Roket Gel Cyano were used to fix their corners. The pinpoint bearings were also superglued into the axleguards for the same reason, one side at a time to ensure the axles turn freely but without sloppiness. The solebars were stripped of their moulded axleguards and brake hangers, sanded smooth on their backs and, after ensuring that the etched axleguards would fit between them without futher thinning, were assembled to the floor. A small amount of Squadron Green filler was needed at the ends of the solebars where they meet the headstocks. A couple of ventilation holes were then drilled in the floor to allow solvent fumes to still escape once the roof is on. http:// http:// The axleguards will obviously need to be packed to provide the correct height, and to that end, I've one of Bill Bedford's buffer height gauges that I can use to set this and all my subsequent builds. Unfortunately, I'm a bit disappointed with the sprung buffers I've got. The whitemetal housings are quite badly flashed, not at all like the lovely clean cast housing of the unsprung units I've got from the same manufacturer, and the lost wax brass ones I also ordered aren't that much better and don't look the correct shape. So until I can find some better substitutes, I can't do much more as the running gear all depends on the wheels being correctly located. Cheers for now, Mark
  7. Greetings All, My OO gauge layout in progress is set on the LMS in the late 20s / early 30s. My terminal station has an island platform and I want to build a balanced two-doll signal to act as the platform starters. Space is a little constricted for separate posts and there are numerous precedents for using a balanced bracket instead. In addition to the "main" route from each platform to the Up line, there is also a shunt move into a siding that trails into the down line. As this shunt move is contrary to the normal running direction, I understand that it should be signalled via a separate ground signal next to the main post, rather than an elevated miniature arm? Can anyone offer some pointers on where to start please? I am aware that Wizard / MSE sell etches, but not being overly familiar with signal post anatomy I'm not sure what I need. Besides which it appears that some of the etches I might need are out of stock. Also I've never worked with etched brass before, although I'm willing to have a go. Alternatively there's the Ratio LMS upper-quadrant bracket plastic kit, but I'd much prefer to have Midland lower-quadrants. Can anyone give me any tips please? Thanks in advance.
  8. This is my 7mm layout Kirtley Bridge It represents a small branchline in the Yorkshire Dales during the 1930s. It appears on other websites, bloggs, etc but as it is now beginning to get bookings at Exhibitions I thought I'd introduce it here. Hope you like it
  9. The name of the vast east Midlands marshalling yard and engine shed / MPD / TMD is a word I first encountered in print; in my ignorance, I've presumed it to be pronounced Tot-on but earlier today I heard it pronounced Toe-tun. Are there differences between local and RP pronunciations of the name? Or have I been plain wrong all along? There could be differences in local pronunciation, as there are for that tributary of the Trent that in Derbyshire is pronounced like the bird but in Staffordshire like the American past participle of the verb to dive. NRM DY 9227, released under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0) licence.
  10. Well, I have no idea what I will post on the blog. At present I am building the fascia for Bleat Wharf which will contain the lighting and also act as storage/transport for the fiddle yard when not in use. I will post a few photos on here as things progress. Rpb
  11. Hello All, So there's a pair of empty boards hidden away and I'm feeling the need, like every modeller, to build something on them. The problem is that I'm stuck as to what. I'm therefore looking for some sound (or otherwise) advice on what looks feasible, similar ideas or developments thereof and anything else that comes to mind. So first the basics: I've got two 120cm x 40cm boards. That gives me either 240 x 40 or 120 x 80 and these boards don't have to include the fiddle yard(s) (I've got enough room for that to be separate, if small). They have to be able to be taken apart and stored. I'm probably going to go for 00-SF, especially after following Stoke Courtenay. In terms of what I would like to gain from the layout there are a couple of key points: - learning to build hand-built track - developing my kit building skills (and learning loco kit construction) - attempting to reach a new level of realism - something achievable - operationally interesting - short trains - affordable (I'm a student!) - exhibitionable (and therefore presentable) I thought I would go through a couple of ideas that I've been looking at and see how they would match up. Coleshill (later Maxstoke) Station on the Stonebridge Railway: https://www.warwickshirerailways.com/lms/coleshill.htm A very small station with even smaller trains. I like the idea of modelling a prototype location and the midland railway itself. The trains are exceptionally short and offer a degree of shunting in the adjacent siding. It's also achievable, with only one main building and uncomplex track work. However I would need to drum up some more traffic if I model the time around 1916 ish. Hampton Midland Goods Yard: https://www.warwickshirerailways.com/lms/hamptoninardenjunction.htm At one end of the Stonebridge railway was a goods yard serving Hampton in Arden. The old engine shed for the Stonebridge railway was taken over by a timber merchant, giving interesting traffic. It's more complex when compared to Coleshill and therefore offers more shunting opportunities. Even so, in my limited space I'm not sure that I'd get enough in to make it operationally interesting. Something similar to the MS&LR's Ducie Street (Manchester) Goods Station. Although clearly too big for the space I have available, either a smaller similar prototype or a fictional, smaller version would provide plenty of shunting and a variety of rolling stock. I could set the warehouse facade against the backscene and then maximise the space available. 1970s/1980s Parcels depot: A small previous passenger terminus converted into a parcels depot. Would allow me to use my Heljan 128. Other than shuffling GUV's around, what else would it entail? What other traffic would/could go through a parcels depot? Engineering works: Some kind of (possibly private owner industrial) railway serving various engineering facilities. Would allow a wide range of unusual wagon loads. Tall factory buildings and small locos would also create a good atmosphere. Minimilist option: Simply a single track line through the scene. Small cassette fiddle yards either side. Scenic section with undulating landscape, bridges, etc. Either based on a prototype or freelance. Maybe end of steam would give exceptionally short trains. Would love to hear your thoughts! Xander
  12. I travel to work in Leicester by rail several times a week and often observe the activity on the former Leicester MPD site which is now operated by UK Rail Leasing as a loco overhaul, hire operations, storage and other services location since late 2013, after EWS finally closed the depot in 2007. The aim of this thread is to welcome anyone wishing to share their photos or information on the history of rail operations at Leicester Midland, over nearly 180 years from the steam era to the present day. I believe there are some excellent archived collections from the 1970's to 1990's and later out there, for example. The depot site has a long history of rail operations, having first been opened by the Midland Railway as a steam loco roundhouse in 1840, with the number of roundhouses increasing to three until they were replaced by the vast LMSR concrete roundhouse in 1945, before this closed to steam traction in 1966. National Collection steam locos including V2 4771 'Green Arrow, and the 04 63601 were preserved and part-restored there in the late 1960s before the idea of a Leicester Transport Museum was abandoned, they moved on and the shed was demolished to be replaced by the present diesel depot structure. Adjacent to the Midland mainline, the depot is now owned and actively used by UKRL, with a fleet of class 56s, both stored and several active; 37, 47, 50 and 57; and contract overhauls on other locos including a 27. 33035 is now on site and 58016 stored. There are barrier vehicles for Mark 3 trailer and MU haulage, with movements of HST trailers occuring during 2018-19. Its an interesting site, with a variety of operations and it could be a prototype for a model MPD with lots of potential for both loco display and operation. Lets have a look at two aerial views of the site to start with. First, one of the excellent series of 'Britain from Above' images from 1949 showing the great steam roundhouse surrounded by goods and loco sidings but in a very recognisable location. Some of the industrial buildings on the site perimeter are still there but most of the housing and goods warehouses are long gone. For comparison, here is a high-level drone shot from Richard Clinnick in July this year. It was posted on Twitter and I did try to contact him to request permission to use it. It shows the site after a lot of tidying up by UKRL, with some of the collection of stored, active and locos being worked on. It is busier today. That's hit my size limit for tonight, I have some of my own shots to share next time, meanwhile anyone with interesting shots of Leicester Midland, 15A, LR or UKRL, feel free to post! Dava
  13. So, seeing as Monk's Gate (aka Midland in London - which was in London but is now in Birmingham- keep up...), has been disallowed from the MRJ Cameo Competition, I've decided to start another layout that will conform to the Cameo Rules, i.e. Scenic section under 2M. It is at the moment a twinkle in my eye and hasn't even made it on to the back of an enevope. However, inspiration acknowledgements go to nhy581, for posting some enticing photos of the Midland Railway in Bristol, with further photos to be found in Midland Record No 30. Hopefully the envelope sketch will appear over the next few days.
  14. Hi all, I have lurked on rmweb for a while but thought it about time I joined in, so here goes. I have been planning to build a model railway for about 30 years, but for various constraints (time, money, space) have just begun, having now got into my 50s. I still have some space constraints but the layout is in a specially adapted shed (aka man cave). Total viewing length is only 8' with a 2'6" traverser at one end. I don't pretend it's in any way a prototypical layout, more a series of views/details/ structures that appeals to me. I love detail but not to follow it slavishly at the expense of actually getting enjoyment out of it. It is I guess primarily a stage set to enjoy my rolling stock. It is based very loosely on the Midland as it encroached into the London docks around Poplar c1907 for instance. Nice and grimy and confined.
  15. Hi, Apologies for the rather lengthy introduction but about 6 months ago I found RMWeb and, after reading a number of blogs, have re-discovered the urge to get something going again (so what follows is all down to you guys).. I haven't built a model railway in over 20 years, and then most were in OO Gauge. Disillusion always seemed to set in once track was down and trains were running and there were so many "correct" ways to do things, which I could never emulate, that eventually I gave up. I have been following a wide number of different threads (and the associated banter, which proves how much fun railway modelling can be) but it has been the small to medium sized O gauge layouts that have attracted my attention the most so, already having a rather motley collection of O gauge stock and equipment, I decided to investigate the potential of building a prototype based small(ish) layout, even if it meant doing things the "wrong" way. At least it should be fun. 6 weeks ago I set to. I repaired and cleared the garage to provide an area approximately 20 ft by 10 ft as the site for the railway (and for general storage - some domestic requirements had to be accommodated). Using four old wooden internal doors, I have an "L" shaped baseboard 20ft x 2ft 6in wide with the short side being just under 10 feet long. The baseboards are 4 feet high, supported by cheap trestles bought on-line. Space beneath the boards is for general storage and surprisingly, despite not disposing of much during the clearance, everything has gone back in, through the simple expedient of tidying it up. And my wife is happy too (for the moment.....). I have chosen as my prototype a local branch of the Midland Railway, known as the Nickey Line. For those who are interested, the history can be found here: http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/h/hemel_hempsted/index.shtml The station at Hemel Hempsted had a limited passenger service but also a compact goods yard, containing 4 sidings. It handled general and special traffic and sorted traffic for a nearby private siding. It was nominally the passenger terminus but there was a passenger halt, goods yard and gasworks further down the line, all of which offer some operating interest . It was also operated one-engine in steam, so the wiring is straight forward, even for someone who struggles to wire a plug. The basic layout has now been set out, with the loss of one siding and it's associated loop. Card mock ups of the various buildings and structures have been made up using photos as guides. The PECO track has been fixed down using carpet tape, and wired using bell wire. Power comes from an ancient H&M Duette. Test running using an old Lima 4F was rather erratic to begin with but after some tlc of both loco mechanism and track, pleasingly slow running has been achieved. Thus much playing testing has ensued over the past week or so to make sure the wagons will negotiate the points and all seems to be well. There is no fiddle yard yet and I need to tidy up the wiring and make solder joints where necessary. Once that is all complete the work will start on the scenery proper. Operation will be to a sequence based on the prototype timetables from two periods - 1922 and 1955, This will utilise nearly all the rolling stock I currently own (following some repainting). The station itself hardly changed at all in this time so should serve for both time periods. That is the theory. I may provide progress updates but promise not to ramble on quite so much. In the meantime, I have attached a couple of photos showing progress to date. I have even tried a bit of movie making and am quite pleased with the result, so will post a link to this in due course. So, a hearty thank you to all the RMWebbers for the inspiration to get off my **** and back into the best hobby going. Regards Rob
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