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Channel 4 model railway challenge


Nearholmer
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Well folks, the TV show idea that caused such debate here last summer is definitely on!

 

The route has changed, to be along the Great Glen, and filming is intended to happen this summer.

 

I will post a few more details later today, and Love Productions, who are promoting it, will doubtless provide more shortly.

 

Working title now "the biggest little railway in the world".

 

Kevin

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I wonder if they'll get back in touch with everyone who contacted them last summer.

 

Strange as this might seem, at the weekend, I was wondering if anything came of this enterprise - now I know.

 

As I said to them at the time - and other people mentioned on a number of forum sites - they'll need to solve a number of technical challenges (some of which I'd find very interesting).

 

A number of us also commented (on the phone, or in posts on various websites) that whilst, for a number of reasons, we might not personally have chosen to build a long outdoor track, we still wish them no ill will with their endeavour - indeed, a number of us would still be interested in being involved. "Negativity" this most certainly was not - and still is not (certainly here).

 

I, for one, hope they are able to make this work. I hope they show a reasonable cross section of the technical challenges that need to be dealt with. I also hope they show the people, effort and teamwork involved in solving all the issues that get "kicked up".

 

Ultimately, I hope the programme makers use this chance to show this hobby - and the people who pursue it - in a positive light. After all, they are reliant on the goodwill of a large number of decent people - people whose decency should, only rightly, be repaid in kind.

 

I'm sure the programme makers will be keen to ensure this does, indeed, happen.

 

 

Huw.

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Provided they don't trivialise enthusiasm for model railway and don't get over difficult bits with a bit of magic handwaving, good luck to them!

 

Of course, it all depends on definition of "The Great Glen" and how far they want to go.  If they just take the bit between Gairlochy and Fort Augustus (along Lochs Lochy and Oich ), there's most of the trackbed of the Invergarry and Fort Augustus Railway (1903-1946) that might be exploited. Further east along Loch Ness to Inverness might be a bit more tricky.

 

I'll follow with interest!

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Provided they don't trivialise enthusiasm for model railway and don't get over difficult bits with a bit of magic handwaving, good luck to them!

 

Of course, it all depends on definition of "The Great Glen" and how far they want to go.  If they just take the bit between Gairlochy and Fort Augustus (along Lochs Lochy and Oich ), there's most of the trackbed of the Invergarry and Fort Augustus Railway (1903-1946) that might be exploited. Further east along Loch Ness to Inverness might be a bit more tricky.

 

I'll follow with interest!

It was difficult enough between Barnstaple and Bideford. The Great Glen fills me with dread, not least because I once researched and wrote up the story of the ill-fated IFAR. Hopefully they've learned from the mistakes made on the James May exercise - at least that was a paved footpath - the IFAR is just an overgrown trackbed. I'm quite glad I'm too old for it now. Trying to re-join yard lengths of 'OO' track in pitch dark, in the middle of nowhere, by the light of a young lad's mobile phone was certainly challenging! And, of course, a heck of a lot of local cars had nice new batteries the day after the event. (CJL)

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I was wearing my positive head......

 

Unlike the originally proposed Leeds & Liverpool Canal route, all I know about the IFA is a recollection of the brief mention of it in "The West Highland Railway" by John Thomas.  Going on that and the Wikipedia entry (eek!) I thought that there would be a better chance of success at that end rather than onwards along Loch Ness.  I only ever saw the James May experiments on the telly, but I can appreciate the difficulties of running track along a fairly well manicured trackbed (like the canal route, too many bikes and people wandering about) and how difficult the journey into the heart of darkness along an overgrown trackbed would be.

 

After this speculation about a possible route, we'll just have to see what the producers actually intend!

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I will post a few more details later today, and Love Productions, who are promoting it, will doubtless provide more shortly.

Hi Kevin, do you know if the same researchers (Rebecca & Holly?) are still involved with making contact with us?

 

Cheers,

Will

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When I spoke to them last time they didn't have a clue. Their last plan was to use Corse Scale O gauge, as it clipped together. When I mentioned things like volt drops and current requirements of motors, you could hear their eyes glaze over. 

 

With the location change I can't see them getting very many volunteers.

 

Marc   

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They were putting calls out for people at Model Rail Scotland. I hadn't realised it was going to be in The Great Glen , so I didn't get the significance of them being at Model Rail Scotland. From the makers of the Great British Bakeoff , smacks of needing credibility. There's a big difference between baking cakes in a tent and laying model railway track over 70 odd miles. I hope they have a cunning plan

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Half baked? 

 

As an experienced civil engineer and practiced model railway constructor, currently resident in south west Scotland I find the notion of laying many miles of track in these distant and damp parts as a particulary interesting challenge.  It sounds a monster project but I guess if you have enough money anything is possible.

 

Ray

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I refer my esteemed colleagues to my post #3 and subsequent comments at the beginning of the thread.  Fort William to Inverness?  They're Bonkers!

 

The Leeds-Liverpool proposal was bad enough and hadn't been fully thought through (cough Foulridge Tunnel cough). This scheme sounds just as bad, I'd like to see the proposed route!  And I hope they're going to issue the participants with copious midge repellent......

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Thats over 130,000 lengths of Peco flexible track. Apparently its going to take 2 weeks. Seemingly they havnt learnt any lessons from the James May programme. 

 

Hmm, that'll be a lot of track hitting the secondhand market!

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Should try something challenging yet do'able..........

 

How about the route of the LOHR? Ok no jokes about scousers and track missing....but the Liverpool waterfront would be perfect for this, although at floor level.

 

They could terminate below the dingle tunnel one end and sea forth station the other, or if feeling really energetic extend it to aintree on the old track bed (still in situ) or onto litherland station across the newish housing estate.

 

Now that would be something, and maybe Chris could lend them some stock for it?

 

Only 7 odd miles plus the Aintree bit, and I bet LDC would jump at the chance to get the publicity for the city.

 

Mind you, what next? Trams in Leeds, or Chester? Using OO track and models?

I think with the way our tram and railway system was decimated they will never run out of routes.

 

Oh, I just thought of model trains over the real Monsaldale dale viaduct, as it's all paved now it should be easy.........ish ;-)

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Thats over 130,000 lengths of Peco flexible track. Apparently its going to take 2 weeks. Seemingly they havnt learnt any lessons from the James May programme. 

If they had any sense, they'd get 1000 yards of sl-100, or sl-700 if its still going to be O gauge, (and a few spares, I suppose), then pick it up after the train has passed and shuttle it down to the other end.  It'd save track being left out for the Borrowers overnight and reduce power problems.

 

According to Google, Fort William to Inverness is a matter of 65 miles by the main road.  Even thrashed, a model loco would take over 24 hours to cover the distance and, being realistic, there would have to be frequent stops (say every 1000 yards???) for oiling and to allow the motor to cool or even be replaced.  I hope they're not going to try and do it non-stop or run it as a race again!

 

As an aside on the power problem, I'd be inclined to whack 24 volts into the track and feed power to the loco through a support coach which would take the power pickup from the loco wheels and regulate it down to 12v, controlled through a conventional R/C TX/RX and pass it back to the loco motor.  Several sets of big lorry batteries should do the trick!

 

Is that the time?????

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It would be a good excuse for the program makers to dig out Johnny Ball and get him to explain some of the physics behind what is going on, and explain voltage drop and the like to the masses.

 

I'm guessing that Guy Martin will probably be being lined up to present, which could pose difficulties, they really need someone who could present it seriously and sensibly.

 

I can't see it taking over an half an hour to air though....

 

Andy G

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It would be a good excuse for the program makers to dig out Johnny Ball and get him to explain some of the physics behind what is going on, and explain voltage drop and the like to the masses.

 

I'm guessing that Guy Martin will probably be being lined up to present, which could pose difficulties, they really need someone who could present it seriously and sensibly.

 

I can't see it taking over an half an hour to air though....

 

Andy G

How about Chris Tarrant?  :jester:

 

Doing a runner.....

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It would be a good excuse for the program makers to dig out Johnny Ball and get him to explain some of the physics behind what is going on, and explain voltage drop and the like to the masses.

 

I'm guessing that Guy Martin will probably be being lined up to present, which could pose difficulties, they really need someone who could present it seriously and sensibly.

 

I can't see it taking over an half an hour to air though....

 

Andy G

Just as long as they don't pull out the daft woman from Trainspotting Live who could not even read the King's number plate correctly during a feature on the optimum position for taking loco numbers!! She was supposed to be a mathematician!!

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Thats over 130,000 lengths of Peco flexible track. Apparently its going to take 2 weeks. Seemingly they havnt learnt any lessons from the James May programme. 

 

2 WEEKS for 74 miles of track   - let's keep it real PLEASE  - that's never going to happen !  The terrain, the weather,  the midges, better call Tom Cruise I think ! 

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The project is not impossible just improbable! As usual with projects ideas are thought up and announced before someone even thinks of asking and engineer either mechanical or electrical.

 

People need to come up with ideas then stop! think! Ask an engineer! Take on board their comments. If the idea is still a good one open mouth in public.

 

see the definition of an engineer 

 

Marc

post-13539-0-24422500-1488617023.jpg

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I'd rather they made a series "Britain's best model railways" showing the best of the layouts there are talking to the people who made them and showing the techniques used. For example Liverpool lime street,Pendon, the forth bridge, world's end etc. With how to items how to build a plastic kit or airbrush and maybe a behind the scenes look at the factory making models for Hornby or Bachmann.

It could be put out during the day look at all the other cookery and DIY shows that are on daytime telly.

Get someone decent to present it like Pete waterman or jools Holland. And it would be great.

Better than this stupid idea of building a long bit of single track up the great Glen

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