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Thanks Andy: really appreciate your input to my deliberations.  While I still suspect that building points from kits is still one step too far for my first layout, I do find myself weakening, just a trifle.  Should I presume you are talking about copper-clad?

 

If I was going to retain Peco points but use something more realistic for plain track, I think that C&L would get the nod over SMP, just because they offer a thick-slippered version that (I guess) would mate well with the thick-sleepered Peco points.  It would seem that C&L thick-sleepered product is the market that Peco is attacking.  On the other hand, SMP track is thin-sleepered, and would require packing to mate with Peco points,  Otherwise, my readings suggest that the difference between C&L and SMP flexitrack is pretty marginal, and probably religious,

 

Choosing a RTR loco and coaches was relatively easy as there were far fewer choices that were provably correct.  Choosing RTR track seems to be a more subjective thing: how much do you want to spend to achieve an arbitrary degree of realism?  If you're really keen on authentic-looking track, then you're probably not doing OO anyway.

 

However, the bottom-line cost of the various options is measurable (excepting Peco's BH flexitrack), at least for a specific layout.  Mine has 8 points and 8 yards of flexitrack (thanks AnyRail):

  • Option #1: Peco FB code 75.  £120
  • Option #5: C&L Finescale.  £916 (RTR), £352 (kit)
  • Option #6: C&L BH flexitrack with Peco FB points.  £148
  • Option #7: SMP Scaleway track with Marcway points. £267 (RTR), £107 (kit)

Hmmm.

 

(edited for English)

Edited by aardvark
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I built my own points, from kits, for my first serious layout when I was 20. Before that I'd only had a train set with Tri-ang Series 3 and Super 4 track, and that doesn't really count!

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Yes the point kits I used are copperclad, and one of the reasons for choosing them is the cost. After building the first half of the crossover I just ordered the rail and sleepers, which were next to nothing. I suggest buying a pair of kits just to see what you are doing, and then get bulk supplies of sleepers and rails for the rest. You'll probably knock £30+ off the cost of the points....

 

Andy G

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Must be about time I shared the amazing progress on this layout,

 

Or maybe I should just share what I've actually done :)

 

Following on from post #46, I've acquired the non-corridor composite and brake that I was looking at.

 

post-27387-0-84915400-1464518287_thumb.jpg

 

Yes, still no track, and yes, that's the missus photo-bombing the shot.

 

The other major activity was to join the GNoSRA.  Those wonderful gentlemen have provided a CD with years of back issues of their publication Great North Review as well as a goodly collection of images of the Banff railway station.  Some of these images are very interesting, most noticeably one of the goods sidings showing a 3-way turnout.  I'm still a rank beginner at this sport, and had the understanding that 3-way turnouts only existed thanks to modeller's licence and the need to squeeze as much as possible into limited space, so I was really surprised to see one in real-life!  I suppose that the 3-way at Banff existed for exactly that reason: the need to squeeze as much as possible into limited space.

 

Some of the other images have caused me to re-think the Ian Futers-based layout shown in post #9.  For example, there is a significant distance between the goods shed and the preceding turnout at the end of the goods sidings: so much so that the goods sidings might easily have been used as a run-around without the need for the loco to endanger the wooden shed.  Of course, Ian Futers artwork is his impression of how he might have modeled Banff without actually having done so

 

If I can, I will post some of the pics here, but I need to check with the GNoSRA first about copyright.

Edited by aardvark
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I lied.

 

I've done one other thing in the last month: been to my first model railway show in years, quite possibly 15 years.  My son, who is now 24, was in short pants, so it has been a while.

 

I attended the Brisbane Model Train Show, in Brisbane, about 2 hours drive (each way) from where I live.  It seems that winter is the season for model shows,  It was an experience, that's for sure.

  • The show's promoters said that there were 45 layouts there.  I'm not sure the show was big or small, or whether the count was correct, as I wasn't counting, and wasn't at all interested in the kiddie stuff or Lego layouts.
  • Most of the layouts at covered Australian locations, with US locations coming second.  I don't think I saw one UK location.
  • Australian models are all HO, not OO.  There was (for me) a surprising level of support for modeling Australian railways, but then I am remembering the state of the hobby 15 years ago.
  • The one UK-related stand was the British Railway Modellers of Australia (Inc), which had a single bored looking chap sitting on a stool reading a book, a couple of static models, and no layout.

An intelligent person would have gone to a UK show while I was wandering around your country, which means I didn't even think of it at the time.  :sarcastichand:

 

An unrelated thing worth noting at this time is that I have re-decided to avoid building turnouts for this first layout.  Yes, I said that before, but some of the preceding posts have sent me off in a paroxysm of confused thought, which ran something like this:

  • I don't want to build turnouts: I wouldn't know what to do, I haven't soldered anything in years, don't have any gear, and it's all way too hard.
  • But RMWeb posters say it's not that hard.
  • Maybe I could try just one turnout and see how it goes.  I'm going to need to buy a soldering station anyway to solder droppers.
  • One that I won't use on the layout, so it won't matter when I screw it up.
  • That's stupid: what if I don't screw it up?
  • One for the fiddle yard maybe, where it wouldn't be visible.
  • But then, if it was any good, it should be in the scenic part.  Ok, just one turnout for the scenic bit.  As a trial.
  • I could do the 3-way turnout, as there aren't really any good symmetric 3-way turnouts in code 75 anyway.
  • Building a 3-way turnout is probably considerably harder than building a 2-way turnout, so maybe not.
  • Maybe I could do a 2-way turnout as a practice, then the 3-way.
  • I could build all the 2-way turnouts I need, then the 3-way.  There aren't that many turnouts in the layout anyway.
  • I haven't soldered anything in years.
  • I don't have any gear.
  • It's all way too hard.
  • I don't want to build turnouts.

Honestly, I suspect that there will be more than enough challenges to get the layout built and engines are rolling stock rolling smoothly over it, and probably quite a period of time required.  And that's before I tackle scenicing.  I think a relevant point is that I'll expect to be doing all this solo, with only the populace of RMWeb as a safety net.  I'm still searching for a club within a reasonable distance of where I live, in the hope that there might be someone within reach who might know what they're doing and be happy to share some pointers (or help fix my blunders).

 

Anyway.

 

The current decision (which could change tomorrow) is either C&L Flexitrack + Peco turnouts, or DCC Concepts flexitrack and turnouts.  I suspect the choice will come down to how quickly the DCC products get to market versus how bored I get waiting for them and/or how hard is it to model them in any model CAD software like AnyRail or XTrack.

 

Does anyone know where there is any validity in my understanding that initially DCC will only offer B6 turnouts?

 

(edited: just discovered that DCC Concepts will offer flexitrack as well as turnouts)

Edited by aardvark

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OK.  Finally, here's the pic of the three-way turnout at Banff station, thanks to and copyright by GNoSRA.

 

post-27387-0-63902100-1470221091.jpg

 

I must stress that they delay was not theirs, but mine.  Since making the decision to wait for the DCC Legacy track to become available, I find a general decrease in enthusiasm, and an inclination to put most things into the "do it tomorrow" list.  This post has been on of this things on that list.

 

Recently, I have noted a pic of a three-way at Peterborough North, on post 227 of the Peterborough North thread.  So it seems that such turnouts were not unknown in practice, but were perhaps uncommon.

 

It seems likely that a three-way will not be high on the DCC list of trackworks to release, and so I will probably wind up using a Peco code-75 asymmetric three-way turnout to model this feature.  Time will tell,

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OK. Finally, here's the pic of the three-way turnout at Banff station, thanks to and copyright by GNoSRA.

 

img190d.jpg

 

I must stress that they delay was not theirs, but mine. Since making the decision to wait for the DCC Legacy track to become available, I find a general decrease in enthusiasm, and an inclination to put most things into the "do it tomorrow" list. This post has been on of this things on that list.

 

Recently, I have noted a pic of a three-way at Peterborough North, on post 227 of the Peterborough North thread. So it seems that such turnouts were not unknown in practice, but were perhaps uncommon.

 

It seems likely that a three-way will not be high on the DCC list of trackworks to release, and so I will probably wind up using a Peco code-75 asymmetric three-way turnout to model this feature. Time will tell,

Has there been any further progress? 3 way points weren't terribly uncommon, particularly in goods yards, Wick being another example. I think the one in the picture is a symmetrical one, the assymetric type having both curving routes to the same side of the straight route.

 

Also found a useful photo on Flickr, showing the short loco coal siding and what appears a fairly new (or newly repainted) water tank, train is interesting too with the 6w full brake added. https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/4916965383/ (with apologies if seen before.)

Cheers,

Martyn.

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I've just posted an open question about track weathering colours, as they are currently available in Australia, under the Weathering, Painting & Transfers forum, here.  Any contributions would be most gratefully received.
 

Edited by aardvark

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Has there been any further progress? 3 way points weren't terribly uncommon, particularly in goods yards, Wick being another example. I think the one in the picture is a symmetrical one, the assymetric type having both curving routes to the same side of the straight route.

 

Also found a useful photo on Flickr, showing the short loco coal siding and what appears a fairly new (or newly repainted) water tank, train is interesting too with the 6w full brake added. https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/4916965383/ (with apologies if seen before.)

Cheers,

Martyn.

 

Hi Martin: sorry, only just seen your post.

 

No, no further observable progress.  With the decision to wait for the DCC Concepts legacy bullhead track, the steam has gone from my sails, just a little.  I have spent time reading and researching, particularly about how to go about modeling the buildings.

 

The picture you found is useful, and I thank you for it.  I have seen it previously, I wouldn't let that stop you from bringing anything further to my attention, as there continue to be "new" things found all the time.  And as a beginner, the list of things that I don't know is considerably longer than the list that I know,

 

cheers!

Aardvark

Edited by aardvark
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To keep up the enthusiasm for your project it may be worthwhiIe to cut your teeth on a straightforward wagon kit, such as the Parkside Dundas range.....

 

Well, it's taken the best part of a year, but I am working earnestly on taking up MartinWales' suggestion very soon now.  This will fill the gap and hopefully re-instill some enthusiasm while I await the announcement of the DCC turnouts.  Discussions with Ben Alder have resulted in the following shopping list:

  • PC25: LNER 12 Ton Plank Open Wagon
  • PC26: LNER 12 Ton Van (Corrugated Ends)
  • PC54: BR 16 Ton Riveted Body Mineral Wagon (Non Vacuum Fitted) (Diag. 109)
  • PC56: LNER 10 Ton Fish Van (Diag. 134) - Traditional Body
  • PC61: LNER 12 Ton Goods Van (Diag. 94)
  • PC66 LNER 12 Ton Low Sided Wagon 'Lowfit' (Diag. 1/109)
  • PC69: 7 Plank Coal Wagon. RCH 1923
  • PC87: LMS Cattle Truck D1661
  • PC89 LNER 20 Ton Goods Brake Van Toad E Diag 64

All of these have been sighted in photos of Banff (I think), excepting the brake van.  I have no evidence that goods-only trains ever ran at Banff - just passenger services and mixed trains - but the LNER brake van seems appropriate for the time and location, and will add a bit of "play value" to the layout.  The brake is due for release shortly, then all I need will be a bit of track to push them around on, and Bob will be my relative.

 

It's also been recommended that my shopping list should include a trial pack of Sprat and Winkle couplings: probably the T/AC3/3 Trial pack for 4mm finescale.

 

Edited: added 12 Ton Low Sided Wagon.

Edited by aardvark

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Has there been any further progress? 3 way points weren't terribly uncommon, particularly in goods yards, Wick being another example. I think the one in the picture is a symmetrical one, the assymetric type having both curving routes to the same side of the straight route.

 

And therein lies my problem.  The 3-way turnout at Banff is a symmetrical one, and the only RTR symmetrical 3-way turnout that I know of is the Peco Code-100 one.  I'm a beginner, so there is still lots that I don't know, but I am pretty sure I want to go code 75 bullhead.  Mixing code-100 flat-bottom and code-75 bullhead just doesn't bear thinking about.

 

The choice seems either to be the Peco SL-E199 code-75 asymetric turnout, or a pair of left- and right-hand turnouts.  The Peco turnout, whilst being flat-bottom, would at least be a 3-way of sorts.  Marcway have a 3-way they call "Tandem Three Way Point Left or Right Hand", which I think means two turnouts on the same side of the straight-through, which would be even less appropriate.  It seems unlikely that either DCC or Peco will produce a bullhead 3-way to my liking anytime soon.

Edited by aardvark

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And therein lies my problem. The 3-way turnout at Banff is a symmetrical one, and the only RTR symmetrical 3-way turnout that I know of is the Peco Code-100 one. I'm a beginner, so there is still lots that I don't know, but I am pretty sure I want to go code 75 bullhead. Mixing code-100 flat-bottom and code-75 bullhead just doesn't bear thinking about.

 

The choice seems either to be the Peco SL-E199 code-75 asymetric turnout, or a pair of left- and right-hand turnouts. The Peco turnout, whilst being flat-bottom, would at least be a 3-way of sorts. Marcway have a 3-way they call "Tandem Three Way Point Left or Right Hand", which I think means two turnouts on the same side of the straight-through, which would be even less appropriate. It seems unlikely that either DCC or Peco will produce a bullhead 3-way to my liking anytime soon.

I believe Marcway build custom turnouts to fit whatever you want

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I believe Marcway build custom turnouts to fit whatever you want

 

Didn't know about that, and definitely worth looking into!

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I haven't seen this thread before so forgive me for responding to old posts if you have already found the information elsewhere.

 

I've not seen a picture of  B1 at Banff, though that's not to say none ever made it there. I think, if you want to be prototypical (as you seem to want to be), you would need a picture or a definite sighting to justify a B1.   

 

B1 No. 61348 was recorded at Banff in 1950. One loco that I don't think has been mentioned as working the branch are the Ex-Caledonian 0-4-4Ts that made their way up here in the 1950's. 439 class No. 55185 was on the Banff branch in June 1958. Of locos available RTR, Hornby's Fowler 2P would also be appropriate as one of those was on the line in 1959.

 

Regarding coaching stock, displaced ex-NER passenger stock was sent to the Great North. In the 1940's the set for the Banff passenger trains consisted of the unlikely combination of a GNSR corridor or lavatory composite and two non-corridor NER brake thirds. I don't know how long this continued to be the formation. It is worth remembering that the North East of Scotland was something of an outpost and the branches relied on both ex-GNSR stock along with stock replaced by more modern vehicles elsewhere on the system. Neat rakes of matching stock would be unlikely, even on the main line.

The running of goods only trains was mentioned earlier in the thread. The working timetable of 1911 shows one early morning goods train up and down the branch but then the rest of the day it was mixed and passenger only trains. I don't have any other information as to the pattern at other periods.

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I haven't seen this thread before so forgive me for responding to old posts if you have already found the information elsewhere.

 

B1 No. 61348 was recorded at Banff in 1950. One loco that I don't think has been mentioned as working the branch are the Ex-Caledonian 0-4-4Ts that made their way up here in the 1950's. 439 class No. 55185 was on the Banff branch in June 1958. Of locos available RTR, Hornby's Fowler 2P would also be appropriate as one of those was on the line in 1959.

 

Regarding coaching stock, displaced ex-NER passenger stock was sent to the Great North. In the 1940's the set for the Banff passenger trains consisted of the unlikely combination of a GNSR corridor or lavatory composite and two non-corridor NER brake thirds. I don't know how long this continued to be the formation. It is worth remembering that the North East of Scotland was something of an outpost and the branches relied on both ex-GNSR stock along with stock replaced by more modern vehicles elsewhere on the system. Neat rakes of matching stock would be unlikely, even on the main line.

 

The running of goods only trains was mentioned earlier in the thread. The working timetable of 1911 shows one early morning goods train up and down the branch but then the rest of the day it was mixed and passenger only trains. I don't have any other information as to the pattern at other periods.

 

Thanks Orange Cat, no problem with replying to old posts - I often do!

 

That's great information on the engine sightings.  You either have a fantastic reference library, or first-hand knowledge and an awesome memory.  I have only just seen that CR 439 class no. 55221 is featured at Banff in The last days of Scottish steam by Peter Tuffrey (it came as a Christmas present).  I must go back and edit my original post to add this new info.

 

Thanks also for your input on passenger stock and goods workings.  You are most certainly correct that the operations on this diminutive branch didn't bother with neat rakes, with every carriage/wagon likely to be different from everything else in the same train.  As a beginner, I've discovered that evenness is death to a model, but at Banff, this applies to rolling stock as much as buildings and scenery!!

 

cheers!

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Interesting thread.  The railways of North East Scotland are under-rated as a prototype for modelling and it's good to see someone taking this on.  There are quite a few stations in that part of Scotland worth modelling.

 

As an aside, my Great Great Grandfather worked as a labourer on the construction of the Banff, Portsoy and Strathisla Railway in the 1850s.

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Another CR 0-4-4T known to have worked the Banff branch was 55185 in October 1954, as per the photo on p.50 of "Scottish Branch Line Steam" (Bradford Barton). Its passenger train consists of a LNER 4w Passenger Brake Van, a (GNSR?) bogie Composite (6 compartments, has lavatory at each end) and a standard LNER Gresley era non-corridor Brake 3rd.

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Interesting thread.  The railways of North East Scotland are under-rated as a prototype for modelling and it's good to see someone taking this on.  There are quite a few stations in that part of Scotland worth modelling.

 

As an aside, my Great Great Grandfather worked as a labourer on the construction of the Banff, Portsoy and Strathisla Railway in the 1850s.

 

 

Another CR 0-4-4T known to have worked the Banff branch was 55185 in October 1954, as per the photo on p.50 of "Scottish Branch Line Steam" (Bradford Barton). Its passenger train consists of a LNER 4w Passenger Brake Van, a (GNSR?) bogie Composite (6 compartments, has lavatory at each end) and a standard LNER Gresley era non-corridor Brake 3rd.

 

Thanks for the kind words and useful information gents!  I'm staggered that you find these pages interesting, given that I haven't actually done anything yet!  Oh well, perhaps 2017 will be the year of the model train!

 

Edited: guess which beginner just discovered that a BR Standard Passenger is also a CR 439 class :pardon:

Edited by aardvark

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Well, it’s 2017 (I heard a rumour), and time to get organised.  Any reader will note that 2016 failed to see me do anything concrete on this proposed layout, so it’s time for a plan.  It’s good to have a plan.  With a plan, at least you know when you’re deviating from it.

 

Not that 2016 has been a dead loss.  I’ve learnt that this hobby will be a literal pastime for me, and hence that the journey is as important as the destination.  However, I’m still keen to see something run in this lifetime, and hence I’m still sticking with RTR rolling stock and RTL track, at least in the first instance.  Once I have something running, I will be more than happy to have a go at loco kits and hand-made turnouts.  It’s all about risk management.

 

Part of the problem with 2016 was that a pastime is something one does in one's spare time, something that my wife has left me with little of.  It is amazing how many garden beds and plants you can fit into an acre.

 

The other part of the problem has been my decision to wait for the DCC track and turnouts.  I’m still happy with the decision, but not sure how long I want to wait – my wife will only find more plants that need planting.  Just to confound matters further, Peco then came along and announced its engineering sample of a bullhead turnout at the Warley Show (so I read).

 

So here it is:

  1. I’ll give DCCconcepts and/or Peco until the end of June 2017 to release their bullhead turnouts.  Apart from anything else, this gives me hope and restores some enthusiasm as there is now a defined end to the waiting.  If there is no news from either of them by then, then I will go with C&L flexi plus the existing ugly Peco large radius turnouts.  Perhaps these will be good enough, as there seems that there is much than can be done to improve their aesthetics, and that a lot of track detail vanishes after ballasting when viewed as a realistic elevation anyway.  Once I have a definitive turnout geometry to work with, then I can finalise a layout and start building baseboards.
  2. In the meantime, I will have a go at creating two layout candidates: one based on Peco track, one on DCCConcepts.  It has been suggested that DCCconcepts turnouts might be B7s  (or might not).  I know that different manufacturer’s B7 turnouts aren’t the same, so since there are no DCCConcepts turnouts as yet, I will go with something else as an exercise that can be refined when the real geometry is announced.
  3. Originally, I was going with the Ian Futers’ layout.  However, research during 2016 has shown some inaccuracies in the Futers’ layout, or rather some things I would like to improve.  Doing my own layout will improve my understanding of the location, and I might as well be doing something while I am sitting around waiting
  4. Finally, I have only just realised that the fiddle yard doesn’t need to feature historically accurate trackwork, and so can be built with Peco track irrespective.  Apart from saving a few dollars, this will get me beyond the impasse of not wanting to order track until I can order all the turnouts as well, yet needing some track in order tackle some Parkside wagon kits (still waiting for their LNER toad brake – hoping it really will be this month).  If I am comfortable enough with both the layout candidates, which should be able to utilise the same fiddle yard layout, then I might even consider construction of the fiddle yard prior to the scenic part.  I guess someone somewhere will have done that before.

So that’s it.  There will be more about the creation of these layout candidates in subsequent posts as I get my head around the process.  You can expect a question or two ...

 

Let 2017 be the year of the model train!

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Many readers (are there any?) probably aren’t familiar with Banff, so here’s a map of the region, cropped from the OS 25” map available from the NLS, as published in 1930.  Come the 1950’s, little had changed at Banff: the turntable was gone, and there is photographic evidence that the siding adjacent to the goods loading platform ended at the switchbox rather than forming a goods loop.  As you can see, the station is a terminus, sandwiched between the North Sea and a steep escarpment.  The trackwork is quite linear.

 

post-27387-0-33032900-1486448124_thumb.jpg

 

The red rectangle identifies the area that I think I want to model: from the terminus on the right/east to a row of cottages at Scotstown/Scotstoun on the left/west.  These cottages will have to be the scenic break, as there is little else in the area.  At scale, the red rectangle is 5x0.6m, as compared with the Ian Futers’ layout of 3x0.75m.  Whilst I have given up attempting to get the proposed layout to fit into my allocated room of 3.3x3.1m, 5m is a tad on the long side, so I will have to do some compression.  I think I would be happy with something in the 3-4m range.

 

As a beginner, I looked for a definition or “how to” on compression, but couldn’t find anything useful.  I suspect that in the art of model railways, “compression” means leaving out the less relevant bits in order to make a layout smaller than might be if strict adherence to scale was followed.

 

The trackwork at Banff is fairly minimal, so I don’t think that there is anything that can be left out without reducing the feel of the place.  Even the little headshunt at the end of the goods platform (possibly used for un/loading of wagons with end doors) and the headshunt in front of the watertower (housing two plank wagons which were used for coaling) are quite atmospheric.

 

The buildings in the area to be modelled are similarly minimal: just the station building, goods shed, switchbox, watertower, engine shed, and Scotstown cottages.  The station building is a scale 480mm, which is about the right size to house two non-corridor coaches. The goods shed is a scale 200mm, which is about right for two wagons.  The switchbox and watertower are already small, while the engine shed is a scale 310mm, and could be shortened while still housing my 4MT, but that’s sounding a bit petty.  On the other hand, the Scotstown cottages could be reduced to one or two cottages without losing anything.

 

The other approach that I can see is to reduce the length of the trackwork, and hence the distances between buildings.  The storage siding that runs westward towards Scotstown is a scale 1300mm, and could house 13+ wagons.  I’m guessing I could halve that without too much loss.  Equally, I might be able to reduce the length of the goods platform and the “nose” on the passenger platform, but I am going to have to have a play with it to figure out how much can be shaved off.

 

If necessary, I can always revert to the Futer’s layout at 3m, and just fix the things that I want to change, but it is fun to have a go at this process myself.

 

I’m not entirely sure of the process from here, but I think it would be useful in the end to be able to print out a compressed version of the map for transfer onto baseboards, as this would help locate not just the buildings, but the other scenic features like the road and seawall.

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Not having seen this thread before, and just having read through from the beginning, I am really surprised that nobody challenged your idea in an early post that you need to be able to run round trains in the fiddle yard.  The key word is fiddle - so you just lift the loco off and shift it to the other end, maybe using a Peco Locolift to avoid the need to rerail it.  That saves at least 50 cm of length by losing the second fan of points.  And you can use small radius points in the FY as the visual effect doesn't matter.

 

My other thought is that maybe you should have bought some RTL track, probably Peco 75, a year ago and laid something temporary so you could "play with trains" and get some hands-on experience with, e.g., wiring issues and coupling problems before setting out on the "last (first?) great project".  But maybe the track you really want is close enough to available now to carry on waiting ..... maybe!

 

All the best

 

Chris

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Thanks Chris: you are welcome to challenge anything here, anytime!

 

The run-around fiddle yard was a hangover from my recent transition to retirement that included the loss of my former 30-year occupation as a computer programmer.  I have visions of a fully-automated layout, whereby the passenger service could automatically run in and out of Banff, including gravity shunting at the terminus and run-around in the fiddle yard.  This is still a goal of sorts, but now considerably more vague as I have come to understand what might be involved to achieve that goal and all the other tasks I have ahead of me.  However, I agree with your comments: a conventional fiddle yard will save me space, effort and money, and can always be extended later to include a second fan of points, should I manage to get that far.  Thanks for pointing this out.

 

A simple RTL layout was my original plan A - the beginner's timesaver - with the added advantages of no fiddle yard and minimal scenic work.  I might still switch back to that.  The Parkside wagons would be fine for a timesaver.  Even here, I had grandiose (and unachievable) plans to have a PC solve the shunting puzzle, then operate the layout.  In my dreams.

 

I am enjoying the research associated with planning a model of Banff, and have made one good RMWeb friendship through this shared interest.  And it doesn't hurt that Banff is where my wife's family emigrated from in the 1950's. The Banff layout might even support something in the way of shunting puzzles.  But it is more complicated than a timesaver, that's for sure.

 

I had another early plan to help with "playing trains"  was to join a local club.  That was until I found that the only local club does O-gauge North American locos, no scenicing, and were not welcoming new members.  The next nearest club is an hours drive away, and they don't have clubrooms!

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Hi,

 

I hadn't seen this thread until today, but just reading the last few posts I noticed the discussion on three-way turnouts. 

 

I'm not sure symmetric/asymmetric were ever terms used by the PW gang; as you'll see below, things can get complicated! 

 

There were two broad categorizations:

 

A) Tandem turnouts are effectively two standard turnouts that have been interlaced, with switches (a switch is a set of points) that have been staggered. Of these, there are two types: both switches are along the main road in type 1, and for type 2 the second switch is in the diverging road of the first. The most common of all three-way turnouts was a type 1 tandem turnout; examples include the two you found at Banff and Peterborough. The Peco code 75 three-way is also an example.

 

B) Three-throw turnouts are not made from standard components--the two switches aren't staggered, and the points themselves are planed differently. I'm told these are notoriously difficult to build properly, though the Peco code 100 is an off-the-shelf example.

 

Here are some pictures to illustrate (all from google images): 

 

1679_261340_490000003.jpg

 

Type 1 tandem, main road in center (switches of opposite hand)

 

fig7.gif

Type 1 tandem, switches of the same hand (apologies for the wiring diagram, I was having trouble finding a good picture)

 

2399_170555_330000000.jpg

 

A rather eccentric example (!) but still a type 2 tandem, as the second switch is on the diverging route of the first. Note the interlaced timbering and the continuous check rail along that nasty curve.

 

 

9fig-7.jpg

 

A three-throw turnout with switches of the same hand.

 

three-throw_turnout_switch.jpg

 

And finally, a three-throw turnout with switches of opposite hands.

 

I saw a recommendation for Marcway above. I would categorically not recommend it, having seen the product and how it is constructed. If you want something other than Peco, you could do a lot worse than commissioning from fellow RMWeb member 'Hayfield' 

 

Quentin

Edited by mightbe
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I might even consider construction of the fiddle yard prior to the scenic part.  I guess someone somewhere will have done that before.!

Exactly what I'm doing at the moment.

The run-around fiddle yard was a hangover from my recent transition to retirement that included the loss of my former 30-year occupation as a computer programmer.  I have visions of a fully-automated layout, whereby the passenger service could automatically run in and out of Banff, including gravity shunting at the terminus and run-around in the fiddle yard.  This is still a goal of sorts, but now considerably more vague as I have come to understand what might be involved to achieve that goal and all the other tasks I have ahead of me.  However, I agree with your comments: a conventional fiddle yard will save me space, effort and money, and can always be extended later to include a second fan of points, should I manage to get that far. 

I (will) have a single ended fidfle yard but with a loco headshunt (the space works for that) which I'm hoping to work automatically. It does mean that the train is worked by different locos each time, which perhaps doesn't suit you for a branch. (You could always double up with two engines with the same number!). Building the FY first is allowing me to improve my techniques before I get to the scenic part, and also it is my intention to trial automatic working, coupling and uncoupling, how to get accurate stopping etc before finalising the visible layout.

Paul.

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And you can use small radius points in the FY as the visual effect doesn't matter.

 

I wanted to check other people's thoughts on using small (24") radius turnouts in the fiddleyard.  They're only 35mm shorter than medium radius turnouts, but I guess it all adds up!

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