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PomDave

Station Platform Details

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Hi All,

 

Having recently retired I'm in the process of restarting my OO Gauge model railway layout in earnest this time.  I need a bit of advise on the ledge overhang of platforms.  I've downloaded Standard Railway Modelling Dimensions and they give a whole host of stuff but nothing on the ledge, although they show it in their sketches.  Can you point me in the right direction, thanks.

 

Dave R.

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Welcome Dave.

 

What time frame & region are you modelling, or are you looking at freelance ?

 

I ask as at my local station (Sandy) until the 1970's there wasn't an overhang but when the platforms were rebuilt one was added (as well as some more height). When it was just brick it did have the WW2 white edge painted as the night lighting was pretty poor (gas lamps)

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Hi Dave

 

As Chris said, it all depends. Essentially (having supervised the building of quite a few of these myself in real life) the overhang is primarily to allow the platform surface as near to the step board of the type of vehicles using the line as possible, whilst creating clearance underneath for any cabling or other fixtures that may be required. Older platforms often were of a straight edge design with no overhang, but others, such as the SR's concrete "utility" template, had a platform coping stone edging, but were completely hollow underneath, bar the vertical supports every yard or so. They also had a more common design with concrete infills set back from the overhang. It was also a practice with many companies to slope the edge towards the track to allow drainage, and later designs gave a lip (now called the overhang) to allow better drainage without affecting the brickwork underneath. These days, platform drainage is usually designed to slope back away from the track, to reduce the possibility of ice.

 

Modern platforms have many designs, depending on whether traditional methods have been used or the more recent modular types, where the overhang is often stepped in several sections. Engineers may be able to give you dimensions of some of these, but the key dimension is only the loading gauge (at step board height). Even platform heights will be different by period, and by company in many cases.

 

So you need to say what period you are modelling, ideally where and decide roughly when the platform was built and whether it had been "modernised" at some point. Or just use an Airfix/Dapol (or Superquick or Metcalfe) kit as a template and go from there.

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These days, platform drainage is usually designed to slope back away from the track, to reduce the possibility of ice.

 

Actually this is done to stop the chances of things like childs pushchairs rolling onto the track! Any platform subject to major works today, or freshly constructed (even on Heritage Railways) must comply by having it slope away from the track.

 

https://www.gov.uk/raib-reports/accidents-involving-a-wheelchair-rolling-onto-the-track-at-southend-central-28-august-2013-and-a-pushchair-rolling-onto-the-track-at-whyteleafe-18-september-2013

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/world-australia-30334122/toddler-injured-as-pushchair-rolls-onto-train-tracks

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-28746425/child-rescued-after-pushchair-rolls-on-to-tube-tracks

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Hi All,

 

Well, basically Freelance, I suppose, I'm not into a specific time, region etc., I just like model railways.  I'll be using Scalescenes for most of my buildings and platforms, with a bit of scratch building thrown in for good measure.

From what you are all saying, maybe the best way is to build them with a flush edge, it would certainly make life easier with less chance of getting a wavy look about it.

 

I'm originally from Colchester on the LNER, now living in Victoria, Australia.  Phil, I think that what the UK is doing about reducing the chance of a child's pushchair rolling onto the tracks would serve well here in Australia.  There have been many cases, some quite recently, of this happening.

 

Best Rgds,

Dave R.

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Hi All,

 

Well, basically Freelance, I suppose, I'm not into a specific time, region etc., I just like model railways.  I'll be using Scalescenes for most of my buildings and platforms, with a bit of scratch building thrown in for good measure.

From what you are all saying, maybe the best way is to build them with a flush edge, it would certainly make life easier with less chance of getting a wavy look about it.

 

I'm originally from Colchester on the LNER, now living in Victoria, Australia.  Phil, I think that what the UK is doing about reducing the chance of a child's pushchair rolling onto the tracks would serve well here in Australia.  There have been many cases, some quite recently, of this happening.

 

Best Rgds,

Dave R.

I've only ever seen a few platforms with flush edges and generally it doesn't look well - to me - on a model. Some overhang will look better. Look at photos and pick an average. If it looks right it will generally be right.

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Another very old tip is to model the platform a little lower than is needed, especially if it is hidden by a train at it from the viewing side, i.e. the train is between the viewer and the platform edge.  This creates the illusion that the platform is longer and wider than it really is.  Actual platform heights vary considerably on 12 inch to the foot scale railways and there is some leeway for a little modeller's license here.  To increase the effectiveness of this illusion, use brick or stone facings laid in courses rather than a plain concrete face with upright bracing, or a void beneath with upright concrete or wooden supports; obviously, if the prototype demands this you will have to comply, but drawing one's eye along the face rather than stopping it with uprights will increase your perception of it's apparent length.

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Item 12 within this is highly relevant http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/BoT_Requirements1902.pdf

 

This is an early version, and any 'unlipped' or greatly-sub-3ft platforms almost certainly pre-date this, which is why we perceive such things as 'odd'; very few real ones survive.

 

I don't think the lip is there to accommodate cables etc (later editions make clear that the overhang is to be kept free of cables, with extra depth being provided for them), I'm 99% certain that it is a safety feature, to provide any poor devil who falls down there with a chance of squeezing out of the way of a passing train. A convenience to railway companies would not have become a BoT requirement; safety features did.

 

Tight curves are always a problem, both on models and the real thing, and normal practice in such cases was to set the platform height so that carriage footboards oversailed the platform, which was considered a legitimate reason for a low platform, it being better to tumle out of a train, than between one and the platform.

 

Have a ride on a Bakerloo Line train between Queen's Park and Harrow to see some platform edges .... the train floor is well below them, because of the difference between tube and normal stock.

 

Kevin

Edited by Nearholmer

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Hi Dave

 

These days, platform drainage is usually designed to slope back away from the track, to reduce the possibility of ice.

And to stop prams. pushchairs and wheelchairs (other wheeled devices are available) ending up on the track. It is hugely taxing swapping the gradient on a platform.

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Item 12 within this is highly relevant http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/BoT_Requirements1902.pdf

 

This is an early version, and any 'unlipped' or greatly-sub-3ft platforms almost certainly pre-date this, which is why we perceive such things as 'odd'; very few real ones survive.

 

I don't think the lip is there to accommodate cables etc (later editions make clear that the overhang is to be kept free of cables, with extra depth being provided for them), I'm 99% certain that it is a safety feature, to provide any poor devil who falls down there with a chance of squeezing out of the way of a passing train. A convenience to railway companies would not have become a BoT requirement; safety features did.

 

Tight curves are always a problem, both on models and the real thing, and normal practice in such cases was to set the platform height so that carriage footboards oversailed the platform, which was considered a legitimate reason for a low platform, it being better to tumle out of a train, than between one and the platform.

 

Have a ride on a Bakerloo Line train between Queen's Park and Harrow to see some platform edges .... the train floor is well below them, because of the difference between tube and normal stock.

 

Kevin

 

Interesting stuff indeed. It was observed only in the breach I believe. A 12 inch overhang is almost unheard of except for the hollow platform types, or until the modern modular erections, and even there, the overhang is often stepped. A 6 to 9 inch lip is more normal (using concrete copers, which were not in great evidence in 1892!), and vertical faces were still being constructed well into the 1900's. Indeed, during the 1959 electrification works of the South Eastern, where many platforms were extended to suit the new EMU lengths, the original vertical platform edges were left in place, as indeed were their heights, with the new extensions at the more desirable height. The addition of coping edgers to such platforms proceeded over the next fifty years, and in very few cases was there adequate room to introduce a lip.

 

As for cabling, whilst it is now common practice to route cabling either to the rear or underneath modern works, it was common practice for LUL to route signalling cables in particular along platform faces until at least 1940 (witness the enabling works for the Northern Heights extensions, eventually curtailed). It was far less common on the main line, but it clearly happened. As part of the Olympics enabling works on the GE and on the ex-LMR NLL, our contractors had remove a large number of cabling routes from the platform face to the rear, for the new cables. That was around 2007/8. As ever, the regulations are way ahead of what was actually on the ground.

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It is interesting. I had to travel to a meeting earlier, and ended-up scrutinising nosing stones at each station!

 

I think part of the reason why such huge, blooming difficult to handle, nosing stones were used historically was to give enough mass to allow quite a large lip to be cantilevered out.

 

Herewith an extract from the drawing attached to a later version of the requirements, showing the additional space for cables.

 

I can think of vast numbers of examples that don't comply with this, but also a great many that I think do, by virtue of three steps back, each of four inches.

 

If I get time over a sandwich tomorrow, I will ferret out the latest standards, and whatever superseded ones are 'on the system', to see what they say.

post-26817-0-72661800-1510090315_thumb.jpg

Edited by Nearholmer

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It is interesting. I had to travel to a meeting earlier, and ended-up scrutinising nosing stones at each station!

 

I think part of the reason why such huge, blooming difficult to handle, nosing stones were used historically was to give enough mass to allow quite a large lip to be cantilevered out.

 

Herewith an extract from the drawing attached to a later version of the requirements, showing the additional space for cables.

 

I can think of vast numbers of examples that don't comply with this, but also a great many that I think do, by virtue of three steps back, each of four inches.

 

If I get time over a sandwich tomorrow, I will ferret out the latest standards, and whatever superseded ones are 'on the system', to see what they say.

 

Very interesting - thank you. I have never seen that 12 inch stipulation between edge of lip and recess of the lower vertical surface before, on any standard my design team were using. Even more interesting is the lack of any measurement for the vertical height between the coper and where that distance must prevail! It suggests two brick courses plus the depth of the coper string. But it is as elastic as it gets. More of an aspiration than a standard....

 

What our detailed design folk (primarily contractors such as Jacobs, Carillion etc) would use, for new works, was the basis of standard units on offer from the primary contractors, but then adjusted to localised circumstances. For example, I had about 30 platform extensions to manage in Scotland in around 2002/3. Very few involved new cabling or any re-building of existing works. Almost every solution was different to every other, despite using only two modular suppliers, due to the difference in transition, ground conditions, existing cable runs, drainage directions and, in one case, the need to incorporate a point motor! We did not seek a single derogation and subsequent inspections identified no breach. One of my favourites was Bathgate, where we had to incorporate so many inspection hatches, the surface was almost 50% metal, and which we insisted was re=worked three times, due to trip hazards and so on. Only for it all to become redundant within a few years with the extension of the Bathgate route on a different alignment. Hey-ho.

 

For the modeller thus, almost anything goes. Plastic passengers do not usually sue.

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The ORR RSPG (Railway Safety Principles and Guidance) for station platforms makes the following quote, hope it helps;

 

A 300 mm wide recess should be formed beneath the platform coping and should be kept clear

of cables and other obstructions to provide an emergency refuge. A wider recess may be

necessary where there is a platform or other obstruction on both sides of a track.

 

 

Regards, Ian.

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The ORR RSPG (Railway Safety Principles and Guidance) for station platforms makes the following quote, hope it helps;

 

A 300 mm wide recess should be formed beneath the platform coping and should be kept clear

of cables and other obstructions to provide an emergency refuge. A wider recess may be

necessary where there is a platform or other obstruction on both sides of a track.

 

 

Regards, Ian.

 

Fascinating. Thanks for that, although I must say that I have never seen anything written in the old RSPG that was so definitive. Would it be possible to provide a link to that please?

 

Looking back through some of the docs I have kept, our key dimensional matters below coping level were the 750mm horizontal that platform structural supports had to be away from the nearest running rail, and the need for the foundation for any supports to start at a depth of at least 600mm below the bottom of the adjacent sleepers. This was to ensure structure stability when track was re-ballasted or otherwise maintained or renewed. Clearly the civils detailed designers must have known about the 300mm recess requirement, but I cannot say I ever thought about it! The 750mm clearance above would have pretty well ensured that anyway, if only a single skin facing was used, which was almost always the case, if not left hollow and protected only with mesh. New or changed cabling/pipework had to be routed, normally to the rear, or if impossible, underneath platforms all the time I was in that game, so that was not an issue I thought about either!

 

Given the higher speeds of today, allowed through station platforms, I am not sure how much use a 1 foot wide refuge would be anymore.

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No time to search current platform standards today ....... a heavy day of trying to understand the standards relating to on track plant instead!

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No time to search current platform standards today ....... a heavy day of trying to understand the standards relating to on track plant instead!

 

I cannot access current NR standards without paying a small fortune, so if you are still able to access them, and have the time and motivation (!!), it would be of some interest to see what I missed!

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I cannot access current NR standards without paying a small fortune, so if you are still able to access them, and have the time and motivation (!!), it would be of some interest to see what I missed!

 

Hi Mike,

 

NR/L3/SIG/11303/2G05 (Issue 4 03/03/2012) shows the platform 'overhang' to be 300mm, with a lateral clearance from the coper edge to the inside edge of the running rail as 730mm. I think this version is still current.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Regards, Ian.

 

PS - I'll sort out the RSPG link for you shortly.

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Hi Mike,

 

NR/L3/SIG/11303/2G05 (Issue 4 03/03/2012) shows the platform 'overhang' to be 300mm, with a lateral clearance from the coper edge to the inside edge of the running rail as 730mm. I think this version is still current.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Regards, Ian.

 

PS - I'll sort out the RSPG link for you shortly.

 

Many thanks Ian. That's cleared up the 300mm then. But that 730mm from coper edge to inside edge of running rail does not seem to make any sense, as there was/is definitely a requirement for a minimum 750mm (or maybe it was 730mm) from the inside rail to the nearest platform support structure. That would not allow for the 300mm overhang. Oh well, I better leave that stuff to civil engineers. Good job, for everyone's sake, that I was never one.

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No time to search current platform standards today ....... a heavy day of trying to understand the standards relating to on track plant instead!

Good luck with that then. When you've found your way round the labyrinthine Plant Manual, can you come and brief us?

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Based on my woefully poor rate of progress, we’d better book something for about the third week of December (2025).

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