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Found 22 results

  1. At last my new railway room is complete and in use, the existing St Enodoc layout has been set up and I am ready to start building the new Mid-Cornwall Lines, but before doing so I thought I would tell you a little bit of history to put the project in context and, I hope, explain why a little slice of Cornwall is taking shape in suburban Sydney, Australia. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin. My life with model railways goes back to when I was about three or four. Not, as was often the case, with Hornby Dublo but Tri-ang 00. My Dad built a very simple but enjoyable layout consisting of a single-track oval, an up-and-over loop and couple of sidings. On one track ran a Princess Elizabeth (with smoke!) and on the other a Transcontinental electric, later joined by a BR 2-6-2 tank. I’ve no photos of this layout but after a house move Dad bought a job lot of stuff from a local enthusiast who was giving up the hobby, which was set up in the spare bedroom. There was double track on two levels, plus two loops giving the option of running as a dumbbell or two ovals, and although I rebuilt it later as a single level line that was probably more realistic, the first layout was a lot more fun. I built a separate, very small, layout called Cwm-Don for a school open day at which it was connected by a long single track around the physics benches to another small terminus called Llangogin, built by my classmate Steve Berry. At about this time, in the late 1960s, we started to go to Cornwall for our annual family holidays, and I found myself captivated by the beaches, the scenery, the weather, the china-clay industry and the railways. Dad then had a small win on the pools, which allowed me to start a new layout that pretty well filled the spare room. It was to be a double track terminus to fiddle yard, with a low level continuous single loop. In my mind’s eye the terminus was Newquay (although the track plan was derived from Cheltenham St James) and the passing station on the loop became Goonhavern Halt. The continuous loop was all that got built before Dad changed jobs and we all relocated to Edinburgh. That was the end of Cornish holidays for a while, but one good thing was that the house had twin garages. As we only had one car I was allowed to claim one garage as a railway room, and next time I’ll describe what I did with it.
  2. Having built many layouts throughout my childhood i had all but given up the hobby roughly 2 years ago. Now i am at university i have some more time on my hands again, aswell as a more stable income which helps. I recently decided to build a layout in my parents garage that i can work on in my long holidays from university. i will also be able to work on smaller projects such as building kits and detailing and weathering stock whilst i am at university. previous layouts had been poorley planned and built on scrap sheets of mdf from various sources over the years, however this time i wanted something better constructed and planned out. I designed a 7ft by 12ft loop of baseboards made of 2ft by 4ft and 2ft by 3.5ft sections which are bolted together so the layout is easily dismantled in a few years time. I began mocking up a track plan consisiting of a double mainline with an offscene storage yard, engine shed sidings and a raised goods yard up a 2%incline. this has recently changed to become more prototypical but i will talk about this later. with detailed plans in place, i came home from university and set about clearing space for the layout and construction began. i began by cleaning and sealing the floors and painting the walls (the walls need a second coat of descent paint. i only had wickes emulsion to hand) i then started constructing modules from 9mm ply and 63mmx38mm timber. To be continued ...
  3. Dear Community, As some of you might know, I abandoned my first layout attempt, an urban western region terminus (Bristol - Bath Road or BBR) over a year ago as a result of an impending house renovation. Once our house renovations were complete - including a dedicated railway room - it was time to start again. As BBR was my first attempt at a serious project I learnt there were a few things that with hindsight i would do differently. Two things I especially wanted to do different second time round was experiment with C&L track work and making my own points (I wasn’t happy with the appearance of Peco points), and get the baseboards professionally made (my homemade attempt with BBR was a disaster). With that all in mind below are a couple of snaps of my new project, WOLVERHAMPTON WEST PARK. Wolverhampton West Park is a fictional city terminus set in the 1960s. Built by the Great Western Railway as the original terminus in Wolverhampton, West Park quickly became a secondary station after Low Level opened in 1854. By the 1960s, West Park primarily served local services to keep pressure away from Low Level (LL). A junction east of LL at Priestfield passing under the LNWR line to High Level near Walsall St Goods runs into the terminus near Molineux football stadium east of West Park. There was one intermediate station at Queen Square. Running out from West Park there is also a connection with the GWR line to Shrewsbury at Dunstall Park (not via Queen Square). There is a further connection north to Stafford on the old LNWR line, which back in the day also had running rights into West Park. There was no link into Low Level without reversing trains at Priestfield, a major factor in the decision to close the station. The convoluted history enables Midland Region rolling stock to pop up at West Park from time to time. The main services are local semi fast and stopping services to nearby towns / cities including Shrewsbury, Birmingham Snow Hill, Stafford, Swansea Victoria, Kidderminster, Hereford, Leamington and Worcester. There are also through coaches to Penzance and Paddington every now and again. Unfortunately by 1960 West Park is very run down. Unloved and earmarked by Dr Beeching for closure the station is seen better days. Steam is still the mainstay of motive power, but on the way out and some local services are beginning to switch to DMUs. Although the station doesn’t have any goods facilities, other than an extensive parcel service, there are a couple of warehouse sidings that see a light daily freight service. On occasion, engineering trains reverse here near their storage sidings just north of of the station (off scene). On my previous layout attempt i was intent on modelling all station throat track work, but for West Park I’ve ignored this. From the fiddle yard we pass straight into platforms 2 & 3. Less is more in this case, something inspired from one of my favourite layouts, Earls Court. A few photos of progress so far..Platforms are almost down and i’ve started mocking up the grand station buildings.
  4. This topic started out as my project to build a layout based on the station at Grampound Road near Truro in Cornwall. After some considerable thought, for reasons which I explain on Page 6, the scenic side of the layout has been dismantled and will be rebuilt as 'Burngullow Lane' - my take on Burngullow Junction. So, for new readers, if you want the full story start here, for Burngullow Lane go straight to page six. Having this week signed off the spec for the building of my new railway room, plus set a date for the construction of the base, I just about feel confident enough to start a thread! Over the past 10 years or so I’ve dabbled with various dioramas. However, a dramatic and positive change in my life has seen me take early(ish) retirement and relocate to North Wales with very positive domestic encouragement to pursue the hobby. I might add that there are other interests, some of which we share, so progress will not be dramatic but progress there will be. My wife has given up a fair part of the garden but when the building is landscaped with a small patio, pot plants, etc. we see the railway room as a way of enjoying being outside together. Welsh weather permitting of course! At 12’ x 10’ the building is not big by some standards but with some effort I’ve found a prototype location - as a bonus in a place close to my heart - that will fit the bill. My prototype interests are on opposite sides of the country and a few months before the move I began construction of an ‘edited’ version of Kings Cross Passenger Loco. I could have extended this but I couldn’t get interested in any way that I could make work. The sheer scale of other parts of the ECML made anything else that interested me impossible. So, it was (happily) back to the west country and the land of my childhood holidays. Whiteball, the sea wall, or Dainton Bank might have been made to work but the train lengths would have looked ridiculous. Then I read an article by Gilbert Barnatt suggesting secondary main lines… The penny dropped with the force of a ton of bricks. Cornwall! Summer Saturdays came to mind… No, no, no! I still wasn’t thinking straight. - A weekday when most of the trains were much shorter would work and there would be goods trains to add interest. Having holidayed there many times I know the area west of St Austell fairly well and it didn’t take very long for me to hit on Grampound Road as a location. Most things work for me - a small place where I can just watch the trains pass, rural location but some interesting old buildings, a compact curved site and a cutting at one end where trains can go ‘off set’. At the other end I will bring the overbridge at Trenowth closer to the station. So there we are. Exciting times indeed. I’m conscious that I’ve written a fair bit for one post so just an explanation of the title of the thread and I’ll leave further explanation and ideas for another post. I believe the expression ‘Salad Days’ originally came from Shakespeare referring to the green shoots of youth. Also it has been used to describe later life when things are comfortable and there are resources to spare. Now, able to remember my youth in model form as a retirement project the epithet seems appropriate.
  5. Hello, I’m entering the world of 7mm kit building, I’ve made this topic so people can ask questions, or rather I can ask questions if need be. I have future plans to build a model railway featuring the Dawlish Sea Wall and well, Dawlish, so picking the right Pannier that would have operated in late 50s/very early 1960s is of great importance. Unlike my OO scale railway, I plan this one to being prototypical. (I also have future-future plans of building a model of Exeter St. Davids, but thats long way away). MM1 offer the 57xx and the 8750. I’ll probably go with the 57 as it comes with a etch cab and bunker whilst still having the resin boiler, the 8750 comes with a resin cast cab and bunker and I just feel like some of the joints are a bit too noticeable, on top of that I wouldn’t want to make construction too easy for myself! I want some experience in etch kits so I can go onto some more advanced models in the future. There were a few 57s working in and around Exeter at different times, 7716 is an example of this. I did a lot of trawling on google but can’t find a photo of 7716, does anybody know if she had top feed and what the colours of the number plates were? Or even better, have a photo? Connor.
  6. Greetings, Oh no! Not another one! Yes! I'm at it again, but this time there is movement, honest gov! Many of you know I’m currently building Horrabridge. Unfortunately, I currently lack the space to keep the layout up permanently. This, coupled with a lack of time, has been the main barrier to progression: work on the layout can be described as glacial at best. I haven’t built a layout properly before. Whilst at college, I did build a small terminus one summer holiday; however, once I went to university all work halted and I made the decision to ditch it about 12 years ago. Having not built anything for years, I made the decision a couple of years ago to embark on a smaller project. Initially, I settled on a smaller version of Boscarne Junction (St. Breward); although, I discovered that 9ft by 1ft would produce a very compromised version of what I wanted to create and too much time and energy would be diverted away from my primary goal: Horrabridge. St. Breward was vastly becoming a monster, almost 17ft long – 2ft shorter than Horrabridge! Last summer, I made a decision to focus my modelling back on Horrbridge and spent a long time planning a smaller layout based on that branch. Thus, all the stock would be compatible with the main goal and I could learn/improve my building skills before starting on something bigger. I thoroughly enjoyed watching @NHY 581 creations at the last two RMWeb members events, @Captain Kernow and @Tom F respective creations have also been very inspirational. So thank you, gentlemen, your work provided me with the necessary kick-up-the-backside! The Launceston branch isn’t short of stations. These range from simple halts, to through stations and junctions. One station I liked was Coryton. Coryton, located on the Tavistock to Launceston section of the line, was a simple affair. A single platform, with a goods loop, headshunt and end-loading siding. A bridge acted as a convenient scenic break and the track plan was rather charming. I looked at trying to fit this into 6ft by 1ft, but it just didn’t work. Back to the drawing board. Marytavy was another simple design, but again was a little too long. In the end, I settled for a very simple scheme: platform, kick-back siding accessed from a headshunt. Two points and very few buildings. The station will take the name Whitchurch Down Halt, but I’ve added the siding. In my world, Whitchurch, a suburb of Tavistock, is slightly larger than it was in reality. The GWR opted to install a small siding, primarily for coal and agricultural traffic. The actual station had a very small shelter, made from corrugated iron I believe, very similar to the one at Clearbrook. Until the late 1950s, a porter would issue tickets during the day: the halt being under the supervision of the Station Master at Tavistock. Whitchurch looking towards Plymouth. Circa 1960 Post closure. Looking towards Tavistock. My version of Whitchurch Down will have a small timber-built station building, based on the Wills kit. I also have a couple of lamp sheds from the late Mike Casey’s Bodmin layout, which will add further Western charm to the scene. The platform will be constructed from plastic brick sheets: this is one of the few ‘genuine’ features! The baseboards are laser cut examples from Tim Horn (3ft by 1ft). These were part of a trio, but the middle board has been removed. The middle board will be used as half of the fiddle yard. I will have to carefully remove the integrated backscene: a job for Messer Brinkly senior and his jigsaw! The scenic trackwork will ultilise the new Peco Bullhead plain track and points. Fiddle yard trackwork will be Peco code 100: I still have some code 100 track left over from childhood which can be re-used. DCC will be used to operate the locomotives and possibly the pointwork in the fiddle yard. Back-scene wise, I’ve taken a number of photographs depicting various Dartmoor scenes. I plan to get one turned into a printable backscene. Anyway, that’s enough for this post. More to follow! Please do feel free to comment and chat on my thread. Kind regards, Nick.
  7. Having been keeping an eye on bcnPete's foray into 7mm squeezed into a small space (see his work on his Wenford blog), this got me thinking about whether I'd like to do something similar in the scale. Since Rosevear is likely to be a slow burner, Par Moor is just a little side project that will focus more on rolling stock than buildings. This layout will also serve the purpose of scratching an itch that I've had for a long time, which is to build scale models of the Port of Par locomotives; Alfred, Judy, and Toby. While I suspect most will be familiar with the Bagnall 0-4-0ST locos, some may have never heard of Toby, the 0-4-0 vertical boiler Sentinel. This was a geared steamer - a vertical twin cylinder steam engine (housed in the "dome") driving a 2 speed gearbox, which in turn drove the two axles by chain. Like the Bagnalls, Toby featured a cab dropped between the frames so that it could pass under the 8' clearance bridge between Par Docks and Par Moor kilns. It's tallest feature was the chimney, which in this photo had been covered with a board to keep the rain out. Given that I'm new to the scale, and that of the three, Toby is the simplest, my intention is to tackle this one first. As with all the Par locos, no drawings exist for Toby, in fact, there really isn't much information about it at all other than the date it was purchased and the date it was withdrawn. In order to have some kind of reference to build from, I scaled a 3D model from photographs. Thankfully, I at least had a few "known" dimensions; I knew that the buffers are 3' 5 1/2" from railhead to centre and 5' 8 1/2" centre to centre, that the overall height is 7' 6", and that Sentinel's standard wheel is 2'6" diameter. I also worked with a hunch that the length over headstocks would be the same as the Bagnalls: 16'. Turns out I was right about that. I think you'll agree that I've probably gotten close enough. As you can see, this is a very small locomotive! A little over 5cm x 11cm in O gauge, and small enough to swallow whole in OO. There are still a few unknowns with this loco. One is that I currently can't find any information about what colour it was painted. Another is that it isn't clear what was in the little "well" in front of the engine dome. "Standard" Sentinels of this type had their engine at the front, and a water tank in the middle. For Toby I suspect they simply swapped the engine and water tank around, and possibly dropped the tank partially between the frames for better centre of gravity and handling. Frustratingly, all of the photos are black and white and eye-level with the locomotive. Perhaps someone on RMweb might have the answer?
  8. As models are becoming ever more detailed, and different detail variations are captured by the manufacturers, modelling the particular prototype you want, and as correct as it can be, can be increasingly difficult, especially when classes have significant variations in details throughout their lives or production. For me this was the case with the Hornby Castle. I had originally wanted 5051 Earl Bathurst single chimney with a Hawksworth Tender, and 7029 Clun Castle double chimney with a Collet tender, thereby capturing most of the key variations captured in the Hornby Model. 7029 was a straightforward renumber of Hornby Ince Castle. 5051 would be a renumber of 5053 Earl Cairns, but with a need to eventually modify the front Cylinder Cover and fit under-cab sand boxes (have parts, not done yet!). As a holiday treat, I purchased an Ince Castle from the excellent Hearns Hobbies in Melbourne which was to become my 7029. It was beautiful and was carefully packed up. BUT I failed to ask/remind them to return the transit brackets to the model. After 25 hours in my hand luggage home to the UK via Singapore, the cab roof corner was distinctly cracked, having been pushed against the hard plastic front of the split tray packaging (and with the new fully 'vacuum formed' packaging, there is even more scope for damage if the model is packed very slightly out of alignment!). I arrived back in the UK with a lovely model but with a deformed cab. Even regluing the corner and sanding/patch painting the join, it irked me, and was not going to be the pride of my Castle fleet, as I am that picky! Damage to the front corner of the cab roof. I secured another Ince Castle to become 7029 Clun Castle, and then pondered what to do with my damaged loco. Then the idea came to me, would it be possible to swap cabs and create 5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe, as preserved at Tyseley? Why swap cabs? Hornby make three different cabs for the Castle capturing the main differences that Swindon introduced over the years: 1. larger front windows and windscreen wipers, and straight handrail under the cab side window and beading on the cab front (visible as slightly recessed cab front relative to the corner of the cab) 2. Smaller front cab windows without wipers, straight handrail under cab side window and beading on the cab side (just printed no relief) 3. As 2 but with L-shaped handrail representing the later build GWR and BR castles It should be noted that 5043 has cab type 1. When Hornby produced this model a few years back (R3301), they wrongly fitted cab type 3. They also used somewhat garish orange lining (rather than orangy-red linking on original releases) – orange might be more correct as per prototype colours, but at the thickness Hornby’s factory printed it, it looked awfully toy like. They also hashed the Earl nameplates – they are a tighter radius than normal castle plates, having been cast for the Dukedogs, and as such the plinths are thicker in the middle than the edges when fitted to a castle. Hornby’s rendition saw the change in thickness distributed across both the nameplate AND plinth and imho looked stupid. So I felt there was potential to build the ‘ultimate’ Hornby 5043, and also use what I feel are better decorated parts from the Sanda Kan-made Castle release (2009-2012) Playing around with my slightly damaged Ince body proved that it was possible to remove the cab without damaging the finish of the parts, or the integrity of the components themselves. Having done this, I then ordered a second Earl Cairns as a donor model, which would provide the correct cab and Hawksworth Tender for 5043 (replacing the Type 3 cab and collett tender as supplied with Ince Castle). Separating the cab from Earl Cairns was a more nerve racking experience, as being a brand new pristine model, I had everything to loose (unlike Ince which was already damaged). It was literally a case of unbox, test, and out with the screwdrivers and modelling knife on a £130 loco, severing major components, all in a matter of minutes! Brand New £130 R2822 Earl Cairns, out of the box, prior to testing and then immediate dismantling of cab and body! The first time I've been so brutal with an out of the box model! Here's how it was done (as usual, I hold no responsibility for loss or damage to models for following these instructions, proceed at your own risk! There is a chance that later models may differ in assembly and strength or amount of glue used): Dismantling A sharp knife running along the inside underside of the cab floor, between the floor and the small white metal weights underneath, was enough to brake the glue join on top of the weights, and also the glue join of the rear dragbox/cab buffing plate Then squeeze in blade between the inside of the firebox and the rim around the cab front to break the glue joint. Locations shown here. Ensuring the rear end of the cab was not caught in the buffing plate, it was then possible to lever the cab back and upwards, thereby breaking the glue join at the top of the firebox. Care is needed not to damage the cab handrails and other fine detail here. Ideally handrails should not be removed from the cab as this may damage the fine stanchions that secure them to the cab side sheet. The bottom of the handrail should be a dry fit in the lugs on the running plate. Cabs off. Note the glue remains on the top of the ballast weights under the cab on, on the top of the running plate below the cab sides, and also in the groove between the weights and the buffing plate at the rear of the body. All these areas need careful cleaning to ensure the replacement cab fits properly (see below). Having done this, I needed to significantly clean the remaining glue off both the cab and boiler/running plate surfaces. This was to ensure there was a clean surface to accept the swapped cab. Some glue comes off easily, some needs scraping, some needs rather forceful cutting/prizing off with a blade. All without damaging the paintwork! This cleaning up was the hardest and longest part of the process. The bottom side of the cab floor needs cleaning of any glue remains, along with careful cleaning of the bottom edge of the cab sides, taking care not to cut into the plastic or damage the paintwork. In separating the cab from the body, a blade should be pushed along the cab floor between the join with the ballast weight tops. The tops of the cab ballast weights need to be cleaned, and the groove to the rear of the weights in front of the cab/tender buffing plate. This will ensure the new cab sits flat on the running plate with no unsightly gaps. The outside of the rim at the front of the cab (this sits inside the firebox) also needs cleaning of all glue remains to ensure the cab will fit in the donor boiler. The inside of the firebox, and the rear edge (in black) also have to be carefully scraped to remove glue and paint residue. In dismantling, a blade should be run along the inside vertical faces of the firebox between the firebox and the lip of the cab front that fits inside. If possible also squeeze a blade along the top of the firebox inside, but due to size/length of boiler, this is not easy. This picture also shows the amount of scraping in the channel just in front of the buffing plate. Significant quantities of glue were put here in the factory, but the smallest remains can prevent the rear of the cab and running plate sitting true. Great care needed to scrape out here without damaging the external surfaces. Reassembly I decided to reassemble with PVA to enable adjustment, and indeed removal and clean up if things went wrong, without damaging the paintwork. My original idea was to further tack in place with super glue after things set, but this has proven unnecessary (see later). PVA will also allow the cab swap to be reversed if necessary. I first glued the cab to the running plate, being careful to slot the cab handrails into their locating holes, and ensure the rear edge of the cab was properly located into the (scrupulously cleaned) groove between the buffing plate and the under-cab ballast weight. The cab front lip was then tucked under the firebox (but NOT glued) The cab/running plate were then taped together to dry for 24hr. Tape securing the cab bottom to running plate while drying Once dry, the cab was gently levered back and glue applied inside the firebox, and the cab lip refitted under the firebox. The loco body was reattached to the chassis. The cab was then levered back slightly to ensure the right hand handrail is correctly seated in the small hole under the cab front window that holds it in place. Using a ruler/set square on a totally flat surface, the cab then needs to be aligned such that it is sitting vertically. DO NOT just push it as far forward into the firebox as it will go, as there is a chance you will end up with a forward leaning cab – the boiler/cab interface is not perfect and there is some play and a small gap exists that in the factory may have been plugged with glue. So take care. Once the cab was squared off, the firebox position was held steady with masking tape, and the whole thing left to dry. Cab vertical alignment drying. Tape was placed to hold the boiler in place on the chassis while the cab/boiler interface dries. levering the cab back and forward changes the height of the running plate, so taping in this way ensures everything is held true. Main work was now complete! There was some minor detail changes for 5043 including moving the lubricator from in front of the steam pipe to the rear (and repainting it from black to green). Final touches included fitting etched nameplates from Fox Transfers and cab plates. The cab plates I backed with paper to increase the thickeness a bit (but leaving a gap in the paper to go round the cab-side rivets which I did not want to cut off). Plates were edged out with Humbrol RC Green 405. For the front numberplates, I used Fox decals, as I find unpainted etched steel plates don’t stand out enough on the layout in poor lighting. I did this cab conversion twice (as the two different pictured locos show). Once using my damaged cab from Ince, fitted to the single chimney boiler from Earl Cairns. I created 7027 Thornbury Castle with Collet Tender (but its now being restored with a Hawksworth tender…. Oh well Rule 1, and there are enough GWR tender swaps in preservation). This was my prototype re-assembly, and I’m happy to live with the slightly imperfect cab roof. Having proved the concept, I embarked on 5043 which has finally been completed after a gap of 2 years due to insufficient modelling time and patience! Aside from the repaired cab roof corner on 7027 and filled lubricator holes on LHS smokebox (somewhat visible), and for 5043 a touched up running plate where I moved the lubricator, these models are as decorated by Hornby. 7027 will also receive the long RHS lubricator pipe cover off (another!) scrap Ince Castle body, but in terms of detail, it is similar to 7037 as produced by Hornby in 2010 (although I will need to correct the middle cylinder cover and rear sand boxes). The cab and plates are still secured with its PVA, and with extra paper padding in the packaging and modified hard tray window, this model has accompanied me in hand baggage on a number of international trips with no detrimental impact! 5043 is, I believe, totally unique in terms of detail combination (double chimney and large window cab) using Sanda Kan made Hornby parts and their lovely decoration and finish. 5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe Thanks for reading. Hope it inspires others’ to go a step further than simple renumbering and tender swaps! p.s. In the course of messing around with the bodies, a couple of the ATC conduit brackets popped off. Thankfully they fell to my workbench, but were very fiddly to reattach (with super glue and positioned with blu tak to avoid them pinging out of my tweezers) – they really are TINY, and along with the Dapol Western lifting eyes, might be the smallest parts on an OO RTR model ever! ATC Conduit brackets, positioned between 1 and 2cm on a steel rule. The whole part is about 1.75mm long 5043 with the Vintage Trains Support Coach (by Bachmann, split from the Shakespeare Express train pack) The magnificent Castle Cab, couldn't resist this picture, captured at a prototypical ground angle, just before I refitted the running plate.
  9. DRoe96

    Coombe Town

    As a first foray into exhibition layouts and being a regular house mover I was studying small layout track plans. During my musings, I stumbled a small Cambrian terminus, known as Holywell Town, at the end of a small branch from Holywell Junction. Having visited the West Somerset Railway numerous times in my childhood I have always been a fan of Western Region locomotives, there is just a charm about funny-looking Pannier tanks trundling through green valleys. Therefore Holywell Town was up-rooted from North Wales and moved to Somerset, renamed Coombe Town. The track plan is identical, with a goods yard accessed via the station headshunt. Trackwork will be Peco Code 100, as I had some around already and am working will limited funds. Variety will be provided using a 7-road Fiddle yard, with an Autotrain, small passenger/milk train, a couple of local freights and possibly some others in the future. So far, the baseboards are up and I'm waiting for a delivery of track for the scenic area. In the meantime, the focus is upon producing PCB sleepers for the baseboard joints and the ends of sidings, and getting the traverser roads laid.
  10. Hi everyone. Having seen some impressive layouts I thought I'd share my attempt with you. I've had N gauge since I was younger and my dad got me into model railways as well as the 12" to the foot scale. Having had most of it in storage for a long while (that's what parents houses are for right?) I finally had somewhere to put it a few years ago so my first layout in a long time was planned and started back in 2016. Now it's not progressed much in that time but recently (especially as there's not much else to do!) it's starting to get somewhere. General ideas for the layout consisted of: Fictional location somewhere in the Midlands under BR Western Region (with some running rights for Midland Region trains) 1960s era to allow running of steam and diesels Continuous loop to leave some trains running whilst other things go on Station with platforms long enough for 5/6 carriage trains Fiddle yard to store trains not in use MPD area Some industrial sidings/canal wharf The area to build the layout was an L shape (two walls of a room). After several iterations this is the plan I came up with (the tracks in the bottom right leading to the fiddle yard on the 2nd wall located above my desk). Baseboards were constructed in normal fashion of timber frame with 9mm plywood top. 3 separate baseboards were created (one for the fiddle yard, 1 for the corner (L shaped) and 1 for the rest in case of the need for deconstruction at a later date). Most of the track was laid and the wiring complete and all tested by June 2016 leaving the layout looking like this: I'll come back tomorrow with more posts showing the progress from then until now.
  11. Hello all! I have been lurking on this website for a while now and today is the day I have decided to finally post! The baseboards are up and pretty much finished, just need to work on the fiddle yard. I have also started painting the garage walls and floor (after watching New Junction on YouTube, it did look brighter to do so). I just need to add some more lighting above and some more power sources. I’ve laid the cork and soldered (for the first time ever) the dropper wires and roughly placed the track. I will test it for a few weeks before I look to do any ballasting. My reasoning for a Western branchlike station is that I am based in Plymouth, having grown up with the GWR on my doorstep I can’t think of doing anything else. I will need some guidance as I am modelling late 50s/early 60s and as I am only a naive 26 year old, any pointers or sources of information will be much appreciated! I have never taken on such a project, my DIY skills go as far as putting a few pictures on the wall. It’s not going to be perfect but with your help I hope to build an enjoyable layout that my 6 year old self only dreamed of. Looking forward to the challenge! Andy
  12. This layout will be titled "Rosevear" and will be a fictional clay drying works siding, set in a flexible time period from 1965 to around 1995-2000. The approximate geographical location will be the Bugle, Bowling Green, Rocks area. My goal with this layout is to capture the "feel" of clay country without modeling a real location, something easier said than done it's turned out, but I think I'm finally making good progress. The track plan will be fairly straightforward, and broken down into two main sections. The first section will be an 8' by 2'6" board which will fully encapsulate the works loop, and the second section will be another 8' by 2'6" board which will have the BR exchange sidings and branch line. Additionally, there will be a small fiddle yard beyond the second section, from whence trains can "enter stage left" however I'm not yet sure whether this will be a traverser, casettes, or more traditional yard. When operating the 1965-1969 period, a class 22 locomotive will be permitted to enter the works and do the necessary shunting, as was common practice at the time. From 1970 onwards, the Sentinel will operate within the works, with BR locomotives only coming as far as the exchange sidings. This operation will be complicated by the need to divide the trains into bagged and bulk, and as we all know, "complicated" is a euphemism for "interesting"! Operational interest was one of my major concerns, given that most china clay sidings fall into one of two categories: 1. complex and enormous, and 2. small and boring. Neither "enormous" nor "boring" are particularly helpful, but thankfully, there is one prototype, that of Moorswater, which is both small AND interesting. This is where I drew the inspiration for the shunted works loop and BR exchange sidings. During the planning stages, I've slowly been building up some bits and pieces in preparation for a layout. It's been a challenge as a lot of the things I want (mostly rolling stock) are discontinued. This is what I have so far: I would've liked to've gotten the white liveried tiger in pristine finish, but all they had was weathered. The weathering job is, uh... well it's just a quick pass with an airbrush, so it doesn't really look right to me. I'm going to have to revisit this. Apart from that though I'm pleased that I was at least able to get a couple while they were still in stock. If finances permit I may get a couple more of each. I'd also really like to have more Cargowaggons and Polybulks, however these are both hard to find and, in my opinion, very overpriced when they do surface. Particularly true for the Polybulk, I believe I paid around 60 pounds for mine on buy it now, but I've seen some on ebay go for as much as 150 pounds. They are nice but that's just ridiculous. I also just recently scored this Sentinel for a mere 45 pounds, a real bargain. The fact that it's in MSC livery is irrelevant to me as it will be resprayed into a more appropriate livery. ECC's Sentinel shunter "Denise" was painted in an orange, yellow and black scheme that originated with it's previous owner, British Steel. I don't want to model "Denise" specifically (I may do that in future) but I would like to use the British Steel livery, because it's a nice "what if" scenario to imagine that ECC bought two Sentinels from BSC, rather than just one. Apart from a repaint this will also be getting a driver and some laser cut glazing. I'd also like to tackle the ugly panel gaps around the valance and between the cab and walkway panel. Oh, and DCC, that's another factor. Here's one in BSC trim. I'm told that when ECC first took delivery of Denise, she was outshopped, which included a fresh coat of paint. I'm not sure why they chose to retain the original paint scheme rather than change it to the corporate blue and white livery... maybe BSC sold them some paint to go with it! Also on it's way is this small wheel loader, which is a pretty good representation of mid 60s to mid 90s loader. These were used in the linhays (bulk stores) for loading wagons and lorries. Then we have this chap, which is a Terex dump truck. ECC used Terex for quite a while before they settled on Caterpillar - I don't know if they ever had this specific model, but it's close enough. My plan is to have this one in the background of the second section, traveling down a haul road. Still to purchase: Bachmann Class 25 Dapol Class 22 Hattons Class 66 Ratio clayhoods Bachmann VGA Bachmann VBA.VAA. VDA. etc. Hornby Ferry van Parkside Palvans and BR vans Hornby CDAs More Heljan Cargowaggons, Bachmann Polybulks, and DJ models PBA hoppers. I can hear my wallet's muffled screams coming from my pocket. As for track, I'm going to be using Peco's new Bullhead product for all visible trackwork, and might have a bash at hand laying for the track that will be set in concrete. Couplers will either be 3 link or Dinghams, I haven't quite decided yet. I like the idea of using a magnetic shunters pole to pick up the chain and drop it onto the hook. The trackwork will feature very gentle curves and large radius turnouts, so buffer lock won't be an issue. As for creative progress... One of the things that I've been most proud of is sussing out the typeface/font that ECC used on all their signage. The answer should've been obvious; it was Futura (specifically Futura Heavy). Of course, almost everything mid-century used Futura, it was an incredibly popular font back then. So that's rather nice, I'm now able to make any signage that I want for the works. The next challenge will be getting to grips with home printed decals... Lastly, we have this tantalising preview - I've taken to drafting in 3D modelling software. Of course, there's a lot of detail missing here, it's just a draft, but putting it together in 3D like this helps me get a general idea of what will work and what won't. This is especially important as, like most china clay works, it's built into a slope, so I need to take account of the gradient and consider how people, trucks, plant, and equipment will move around the site. It's also allowed me to get inside the head of ECC's engineers, and see some of the logic behind the way the buildings were put together. The layout won't have a back panel, and is intended to stand in the middle of the room so that it can be viewed from all sides. I suspect many won't particularly care for this view and will prefer to focus on the trains, but personally I find the works as interesting as the trains, if not more so. So that's all for now. I have a bit more work to do on the trackplan yet, mainly for the second section. The first section will be taken up with the dryer and linhays, but the second section will have a large open area and I'm not quite sure how this will be used yet. I'm contemplating putting a sulphuric acid terminal there, as there was such a thing at Great Beam on the Wheal Rose branch, and there was talk of reopening the branch to serve it by rail. Of course, I'm open to suggestions!
  13. Dear Community, I’m trying to track down any examples of Western Region signal boxes that overhang track work, particularly in urban settings. I’ve shown below an example (photo accredited to Chris Law) from the midland region. Wondering if something similar ever existed on the Western Region anywhere?
  14. This is my first thread within this forum, hopefully, more will follow. For the last decade, I have been building a large layout in the spare bedroom of my parents' house. Now approaching graduation I need to start again, this time with a smaller, more portable layout this time aiming for more exhibitable standards. The current plan is set in the Midlands area of the GWR on the outskirts of Birmingham, with a junction station and small goods yards set into a walled cutting, aiming for photography opportunities a la Liverpool Lime Street. The secondary main line was an early casualty with the continuing line terminated and the station left to serve the local industry and the connecting branch further into the suburbs. With the double track mainline now singled into the tunnels the below track plan was devised. Although, advice on this would be much appreciated from those with more experience of providing some good operation at exhibitions. Trains would enter from either the traverser, left, or the turntable, top, the into the station or goods loop, where they will then leave the other way or the way they entered. The goods yard facilities are fairly basic with an end loading ramp on the lowest siding. I currently have an issue with engines running through the goods shed to access the coal wagons, although no idea of how to solve this in a prototypical manner. The general geography of the layout is shown in the CAD details below. I look forward to the input from others on this forum. Dom
  15. I found a picture a few days ago. Any information which vehicles this were? All I know is first batch Thanks Martin
  16. Whilst researching Mk1 catering cars over the weekend I came across this post from The Johnster Followed by this information from Brian br2975 which got my interest. Further research led me to the EM gauge 70's website which has a page on the Mk1 Pullman cars. However they suggest that 10 out of 15 vehicles in the PSK fleet were used by the Western as a Buffet car for excursion traffic, with a start date of September 1971. Whilst individual cars vary, most are next reported as stored by the following August (1972). EM 70's lists the grey/blue example as E334E, which they don't mention as having worked on the Western. Out of curiosity (and as a possible addition to my passenger stock) did Cardiff have 3 PSKs with the other 7 at other Western depots? Brian's note of one in a Footex, and a September transfer date makes me wonder if they were intended for use in such trains, lasting one season before ending up in store by the following summer. Or if not Footex traffic what was this short lived need for 10 buffets in excursion trains? If the idea was to provide catering in such trans and the PSKs were available for "free", they didn't give the idea much of a trial as it was over in less than a year, and missed the [presumably] busy peak summer season.
  17. Hi everyone, I'd like to build a full length Cornish Riviera train over the summer - it is part of a very long-term project. I know the carriages were in chocolate & cream livery and the RSO & RF will need to be built from Comet parts. I understand from the old Model Rail article (from 2008 I believe) that the 1961 formation was as follows: BSK SK SK SK RSO RF FK CK BSK SK BCK Is this formation correct for the summer of 1960 and does anyone know the carriages (numbers) allocated to this service? Many thanks in anticipation. Kind regards, Nick.
  18. Dear RM Web, I'm currently building a western region secondary city terminus set in the early 60s. I wondered whether colour light signals would be appropriate at this time as on other parts of the system and particularly in suburban areas. If so, are there any on the market that offer a solid resemblance. Warm regards, Nicos
  19. Hi Everyone, My Western Region suburban terminus station has a bridge cutting through the middle of the platforms which, for shorter trains, would obscure the view of the platform starter signals at the station throat. I think I’m after some steam era banner repeater signals, but any guidance would be greatly appreciated. Is there anything off the shelf that would work? Kind regards, Nick
  20. I've mislaid some notes I made some time ago about the actual, precise, dates when auto-trains last ran on the Greenford-Ealing service, and also for the Uxbridge and Staines Branches. Can anybody help me on this, or point me to reference sources? So far as I remember the Greenford line went straight from auto-trains to Class 121 units. Both Staines and Uxbridge were operated by a combination of GWR railcars and auto-trains. Towards the end of the 1950's the GWR railcars would operate mainly during the day, until about tea-time, when they then worked to Uxbridge (which didn't have an afternoon service.) Auto-trains then took over on the Staines line. They were all replaced so far as I remember by Class 121 units at the same time, and Southall presumably lost all it's auto-cars and GWR railcars at the same date.
  21. Hi, I've lurked for a while now and thought it was high time I posted something. I've drawn up a track plan for which my new layout it is based loosely on Castle Cary in Somerset. It was my local train station growing up, so spent many a weekend jumping on the train heading down to Weymouth or Taunton. My era for my layout will be broadly based from 1970's to early 1990's. The plan below will allow me to have enough through passenger traffic in addition to a branch-line, and small yard to tinker with coal and quarry stone traffic. With modeler's license I'll be running coal trains through from a newly discovered mendip coal seam. Plus the occasional nuclear rail traffic through from Hinkley Point too. My plan is to have a fiddle yard on the opposite side to the station on the layout and it will be operated using DCC operation. The aim of the layout is to have it constructed using modular baseboards, which I have purchased in kit form and self assembled. So once one board is finished I move onto the next. The speed at which i have done this has been rather slow, but when you become a dad its important to enjoy watching your little ones grow up- hopefully my sons will also get the railway bug too! I've been quite lucky in the fact that my wife allows me a modelling room and encourages my hobby. Though an impending house move on the horizon (next 12 months) to pastures new will mean that my modelling time is precious anyway! Cheers Peter
  22. In the past I have had a tendency to start a layout get so far and for some reason end up ripping the whole thing up. The only evidence of its existence being a thread on a modelling forum, that is why this time I had decided not to start anything until I actually got somewhere with my layout. So here is where I've got so far... (Sorry it is bit of an epic read, might best making a cuppa before starting.) My Layout Build The development of my layout is what I call organic in its design, the original plan was a wall hugging U shaped layout around 3 walls of my shed. But testing of the Dapol HST on my Helix had unsatisfactory results and so it was back to square one. This time I considered the future not wanting to start a layout and have to rip it up due to a house over I wanted something I could take with me. The resulting baseboard size is 2 sections of 4ft by 3ft. Originally I had intented 4 sections of 2 by 3 but the resulting woodwork was not to my satisfaction the strength of the baseboards was lost and an excessive amount of legs was required. With the size selected I went through many ideas, Aynho junction was a strong contender, my chosen modelling period being 1989- 1997 but has since expanded to around 2003-4 maybe a little further. I eventually decided on a 4 track GWML split level layout with a southern/midland freight interchange above. So how I got to a WCML themed layout is the reason why I call the design organic. As I progressed with my GWML idea I realised that the roundy roundy of the fiddle yard wasn't going to satisfy me. If a train travels in one direction then it should (under most circumstances) come back rather than from the same direction. So I played around with the points I had purchased, I also wanted to run the layout and view it from the front and so to avoid having to keep going around the back I decided to build the fiddle yard on the side (although eventually it got to the back as well) Eventually I came up with a design which would allow end to end operation and roundy and roundy when I just want to sit and watch the trains go by. There are four 'through roads' two dead end roads at the station end and 3 at the London end (or will be) This design led me away from GWML and I found myself inspired by the layout Dudley Heath, I decided to use a half station to hide one end of the fiddle yard with all 3 platform lines Bi-Directional, somewhere along the line I decided to switch to the WCML (a Dapol 86 helped) despite my western region stock. The layout under construction, the many objects holding down the track whilst the copydex cured. With the station planned out I decided on the next part of the layout, I really wanted a junction, again I planned and replanned with the points I had, I felt it was best to have a branch or secondary line come in from a higher level but I didn't feel the line coming in on the inside of the loop worked so decided to join from the outside. The line would join the main lines and feed across the Up and Down lines into a bay. The junction would also allow trains to work bi-directionally in and out of the platforms. The bay line would also join up to the DMU depot. With the junction decided phase one of the layout would be finished with the line curving round and joining back up with the fiddle yard. The fiddle yard was built first, using seep point motor control and the track pinned down, the shorter of the two dead end roads can hold 4 MK 3's the longer road can hold a 7+2 HST. The final 3 roads are to b installed at a latter date two of the three will hold 7+2 HST sized trains. The scenic part of the layout has been glued down with copydex, the points will be controlled with dcc concepts slow action point motors. The curves have been canted to add a bit more realism to the rather trainset looking curves, this was achieved by cutting mount board to shape and gluing underneath to elevate. The fiddle yard is a mixture of code 80 and 55 whilst the scenic side is all code 55. As it stands with the track down I'm wiring the layout for dc use but will build in a switch to allow dcc use later on. With the layout now underway I decided I needed a location, for those planning a layout and feeling a bit stuck I would really recommend using Google Earth and just follow the railway lines of Britain, they can lead to inspirational ideas and even older dismantled lines can sometimes be followed by using the scars it has left in the land. There is is even a timeline and depending on location you can roll back the clock to look at old aerial photos, I know in particular at looking at the lines around Oxford you can see the smoke and steam of locomotives working along the line. This is what I did I started at Euston and followed the line North, initially I was looking for ideas of the type of freight terminals there are on the line when I reached the Northampton loop line I had my idea and inspiration for my layout. I always felt Buckingham was never adequately served by the railway (and possibly sub consciously inspired by Peter Deny) I decided it needed its own loop line off the WCML. But rather than model Buckingham I decided to create two extra fictional towns to justify the line and model one of the towns. Studying google maps I looked for suitable locations for my fictional towns and picked my route, below are my fictional Wikipedia articles, for my chosen fictional location. By doing this I have opened the opportunity for myself (or others if you wish) to model the other towns later on. The Mainlines finished. Githley The historic town of Githley is situated north of Aylesbury along the A413 and north west of Leighton Buzzard along the A4181 in Buckinghamshire, it's name comes from the Anglo Saxon Gytha's Woodland. The market town grew in the industrial revolution and was known for its wool products and local clay pits north of the town, produced from the local brick making industry but now days flooded to form man made lakes know as 'The Wades'. Excluding the most northern pit which is used for landfill. It's prosperity led to a diversionary course from the Grand Union Canal to a basin east of the town. Nowadays Githley is a commuter town there are several local and national businesses on the industrial estate, although nearby Milton Keyens is a large source of local employment, the town's large population still supports a retail park and high street stores. There is also a scrap dealer and an aggregates distribution centre. The town also has a railway station, the station is situated on the Buckingham loop line of the WCML. It is also the terminus of the short branch off the Oxford to Bedford line. Githley Railway Station The original station was a small terminus built of the edge of the town branching off the Buckingham Railway's Banbury to Bletchley section which opened in 1850. When the LNWR absorbed the Buckingham Railway in 1879 it used the opportunity to build a new station on its new loop line from Soulbury Junction north of Leighton Buzzard to Hanslope Junction near Roade. Completed in 1882 the station was a rather grand affair for the town but the line had seen great support and investment of Local Landowner Sir Henry Handle Duke of Githley and it was his only demand for his support as a gift to the town he loved. The previous terminus was demolished and the line was diverted into the new station. Githley had a large goods yard, small MPD which was a sub shed of Bletchley and carriage sidings. The line had a rail-served gasworks and an extensive network of sidings north of the town which served the brickworks. Traffic from the brickworks made great use of the LNWR branch to Dunstable where traffic to London would continue on the GNR branch to Hatfield. Passenger services ran to Leighton Buzzard and onto London, Oxford (changing at Winslow for Bletchley) north to Buckingham (Stratford Road), Stowe Castle and Towcester before rejoining the West Coast mainline heading North. There was also a service to Dunstable. Later on the Banbury service on the Buckingham branch was extended to Githley. Nowadays Githley is run by London Midland with services from Rugby, Northampton and Stowe Castle to Leighton Buzzard and London Euston. Services to and from Oxford and Aylesbury are run by Chiltern Railways with GWR running addtional peak services from either Paddington or Reading. The station is also served by Virgin West Coast trains and Thameslink run a Stowe Castle to Luton Airport Parkway service via Dunstable. The former engine shed is now occupied by a DMU Depot. The Buckingham Loop The Buckingham loop was started after the LNWR's acquisition of the Buckingham Railway in 1879. The company felt two branch's from the Bletchley to Oxford line to Buckingham and Githley where insufficient to the needs of the Town's requirments this with the opportunity to reach the important town of Stowe Castle which was surprisingly untouched by railway mania, the local land owner Lord Gordon Marston had also put up fierce opposition to any building of the railways on or near his land. The closest being a light railway from Towcester which ended 3 miles north of the Town. The loop diverged from the LNWR's main line a Soulbury Junction North of Leighton Buzzard heading west with a station at Stewkley, which was closed in 1964. The line then began heading north to the town of Githley, which was important for it's brickworks. A new station was built to the east of Buckingham to differentiate from the original station it was named Buckingham (Stratford Road). The line then headed directly north to Akeley which was closed in 1964 and onto Stowe Castle, before continuing to Towcester before returning east and joining back up to the mainline at Hanslope Junction. 67019 "Winston Churchill" propels a Glasgow to Euston service out of Githley towards Leighton Buzzard.
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