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jamest

North Molton - 4mm GWR BLT

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Hi all,

 

I am continuing with my OO BR blue layout Greenwood - but recently I've noticed strange things happening in my house......I had a look in my 'stock cupboard' and found someone had been buying earlier rolling stock and hiding it in there! - imagine my surprise :nono:

 

I've been thinking about doing something small again and I have also looked to take a step away from my usual diet of code 100 track. I'm not knocking it, I just what to experiment with something different. I have bought some SMP track and some Marcway plastic sleepered point kits - but I am not that confident in the durability or build quality of my points - and I don't want to experiment on a layout that might get out and about every now and again (if invited) and suffer from running problems. So I decided to take a smaller step, encouraged by AndyY's thread, and use re-spaced code 75.

 

The track plan is not radical or new and is mostly inspired by another OO layout lurking on here called Pen Y Bont. It has started at a scenic 4'x18" but this might well increase now I've had a think about what I want to do around the buffer stop end. I plan for the fiddle yard to be at least 4' long too so that there are no compromises on train lengths and there is ample storage space for any plan I might lean to!

 

The points will be controlled by seep point motors and a seperate DC supply - coupling will be done via kadees with magnets buried under the track.

 

I'm not really sure about the name yet, North Molton is the village I hail from (North Devon) and the nearest the GWR go to it was South Molton 3 miles away - on the way to Barnstaple. I like using real place names rather than making them up, and this seems to fit for now.

 

Anyhow here are some photos I took of my first stages of construction - the baseboard is 12mm ply on a 18mm x 45mm softwood frame - the wiring is not revolutionary so I'll spare you photos of that. The stock running will be DCC fitted.

 

The track plan - run around is half off scene

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The push to make switches are wired for the three points:

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I have used the tracklay underlay - but used it sticky side down and glued the track to the underlay using Copydex - This might seem a bit mad but I think code 75 sleepers are too thick to use a thin ballast layer stuck to the sticky side of the underlay. I can also spray the track after laying this way too - and not have to lay and ballast at the same time.

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Respaced track looks good, in my opinion, and you can also see the kadee magnet in place:

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Thats all for now.

 

All the best,

James

 

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Edited by jamest
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Hi all,

 

Time for another update - I always seem to make some headway before commiting to the forum so we have some catching up to do to reach where I am at the moment - I don't actually work this fast!

 

I decided that I could 'manage' - both physically, and in the car if necessary - a five foot long scenic section. I felt it gave me more options in the siding area and around the buffer stops - and I wanted to have a road bridge over the fiddle yard entry so it balanced out the scenic track lost there.

 

So I have extended the headshut and siding into the extra length, and you will notice the track has been painted. I use sleeper grime for the overall colour and paint the rail sides and chairs tamiya NATO brown:

 

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I plan to have a fasica board when I have decided the exact contours of the land leading away from the road bridge on the left to the edge of the siding - so the 'mismatch' on the front of the baseboard will be covered.

 

I have also constructed the fiddle yard - it is a traverser with four track to take three Mk1s and a train. I've also set the length of the 'lead in' on the fiddle yard board so that I can run around three coaches. Hopefully this will involve a satisfying reverse into the loop from the trains stopping position - then a further movment back when the train has reversed onto the coaches.

 

Ignore the BR Blue coaches - it was all I had to hand in the shed at the time:

 

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Next job is to work out the position of the road bridge and platform - and glue the backscene in place.

 

All the best,

James

 

 

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Edited by jamest
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Looks great James.

 

Are you going to curve the corners of the backscene?

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Hi Richard.

 

I plan to do the same as bratton lane and radius the backscene a little when I fix it. I don't want the radius to be too big as it would interfere with the overbridge.

 

I find as long as it is not a sharp corner you don't notice it as much. You will not be able to look straight in at the sides of the layout as I plan to have a fascia board with width to it each end to prevent this.

 

Cheers,

James

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Hi all,

 

Bit more progress to report....

 

I've made a start scheming out the scenic break bridge and platform and I've also added my 'backscene of choice' (see Braybridge and Bratton Lane in my layouts below!).

 

As suggested by Richard (although I admit a bigger radius would be better) I have radiused the corner of the backscene in an attempt to mask the corner in the sky. As the undergroth and scenery is added the masking will continue.

 

I have part assembled my platform signal box and I plan to use a ready to plonk station building from the scenecraft range.

 

I have straightened the siding a little as I wanted a little more room between it and the end of the board.

 

I am steadyily going along and I am resisting the urge to ballast becuase I want to install some wills point rodding - I have read on here that it is not really 'GWR prototypical' but I believe it will improve the overall picture anyway.

 

Here are the pics....The signal box will be painted at a later date - I'm having trouble tracking down reliable humbrol versions for the GWR light and dark stone - so I think I might have to bite the bullet and order some phoenix paints.

 

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You can see the slight adjustment for the track here:

 

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I'm quite happy with the spacing and colour:

 

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Hope to have some point rodding pictures soon!

 

All the best,

James

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Edited by jamest
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Hi all,

 

Update on the point rodding....

 

I bought the 'normal' pack and the extension pack, which turned out to the be the right choice as even with this small layout I did not have enough straight runs in the normal pack. You do not get extra cranks or associated bits and bobs in the extention pack - only straights. I have lots of straights left over now, but not many other bits. The packs are around a tenner each, but I'm happy with the overall effect.

 

The small signal box will sit on the platform - so I cut out the base wood for the platform to let the rodding disappear underneath it. I have placed a 'double run' out under the bridge to 'operate' the other end of the run around loop offscene.

 

In other news....I've bit the bullet and purchased some Pheonix Precision GWR paints mail order - ouch!

 

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Regards,

James

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Edited by jamest
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Hi again,

 

Another quick update on my weekends efforts.

 

I've put together some of my wills varigirder kit and used scalescenes dark red brick paper for the surrounding structure.

 

The road surface is a wilkos grey tester pot sprinkled with wood burner ash while still wet.

 

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Regards,

James

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Edited by jamest
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Hi all,

 

Its been a while since I updated this. I've had some serious back trouble over the summer and the modelling has had to take a back seat. I don't want that to sound too serious as I'm sure there are many who have suffered, and are still suffering, more than me - but for a few weeks the pain was pretty bad - and I've been rationing my time in the shed bending over the layout.

 

I have made some decent progress in the last month or so - I have been meaning to take photos as I go but I don't always remember!

 

I had hit a mental block with how I would arrange the buildings around the sidings - but I have progressed through that and I am quite happy with how it is going. I have finished off the platform surface with paving sheets and painted card for the tarmac and put in the retaining wall around the end with the overbridge. I have decided to have a loading platform beside the angled siding - blending it with the landscape sloping down from the road.

 

I have placed the bottom half of the fascia against the front of the layout which enables we to match the terrain and apply plaster bandage over the foam base.

 

So here is the photographic evidence! Some of the photos are a little blurred as I struggle to get far enough away from the layout when attempting to photo the whole width - and the lighting at night is not ideal for photography.

 

The overall pics showing the bottom fascia - there will be a top too to frame the scene:

 

post-7097-0-33554600-1542224469.jpg   post-7097-0-23798200-1542224473.jpg

 

I have made the ends thicker to hide the end of the backscene and make the viewer look in at an angle - the right hand end might be made thinner depending on how I arrange the scenery/buildings that end - I thought it would be easier to remove material if a need to:

 

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Here is some of the shots around the entrance from the fiddle yard - the plaster bandage will be covered when it dries!

 

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And here is another showing the platform/track/point rodding/backscene in one. the brick paper is scalescenes aged brown and the eagled eyed of you will notice I have redone the road bridge supports in this as opposed to the dark red brick shown earlier:

 

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And the loading platform:

 

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Think that is it for now - I am also busy painting all the buildings in my GWR light and dark stone.

 

All the best,

James

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Hi all,

 

Apologies for the lack of updates.

 

I've covered the plaster with some paint and brown scatter.

 

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I have also been labouring over the ground colour/texture in the yard. I tried wood stove ash but it does not respond well to the pva flood method and if I scatter it onto pva it does not stick thick enough. I'm sure some have had success with it but I have opted for grey paint with talc spread on it when wet. The surface is still quite clean at the moment, as you will see, but it will be weathered and toned down later.

 

I also decided to try be slightly more realistic in the yard line ballasting so I placed card on the yard to the top of sleeper height and then removed the ballast between the sleepers so I could try some DAS clay in there instead:

 

Card up against the track and ballast removed:

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With the clay blended into the card surface:

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Half way through showing the card and the area to be covered in clay:

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And the end result painted and blended:

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Quite pleased with it - but it is too clean at the moment!

 

Regards,

James

 

Regards,

James

Edited by jamest
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This is looking really nice, impressed you went with the point rodding, I picked up a packet to look at and put it back :) They clay works well doesn't it. I wasn't something I'd tried before either but wanted something for the goods yard. With some paint and a little weathering powerder, it's quite easy to work with.

 

Looking forward to the first train!

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On 23/01/2019 at 11:13, sjrixon said:

Looking forward to the first train!

Me too !

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Don't know how I've missed this until now. Enjoyed your previous projects and have enjoyed reading through your progress so far. 

 

Looking forward to more. 

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Hi all,

 

Question regarding colour scheme of my station buildings.

 

I've gone for the older GWR dark and light stone colours but I've had a crisis of confidence on my choice.

 

I would like to run some green diesels too - so should I have gone for chocolate colour trim as per the Western region? Or could the earlier colour scheme I have chosen survived into the 60s?

 

I could apply rule 1, but I would like the concept to be realistic - if not strictly true (if you see what I mean).

 

Regards,

James

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WR chocolate colour trim ruled in the early 60s. There were probably a few instances of the older paints, but by then they would have faded into very light colours.

 

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On 05/04/2019 at 11:17, Miss Prism said:

WR chocolate colour trim ruled in the early 60s. There were probably a few instances of the older paints, but by then they would have faded into very light colours.

 

 

Hi,

 

Yes reading around I think a re-paint is in order - I picked up some options at the weekend and will be testing them to see which I like best for the chocolate colour.

 

I have downloaded the scalescenes Western region station signs and posters, etc too.

 

Regards,

James

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Hi all,

 

Here are the pictures from the re-paint to western region colours....

 

I've also added more ground cover to the yard area - I purchased some fine stone at Trainwest and instead of laying and flooding with diluted pva 'a la ballasting' I applied pva neat to the surface and sieved the fine stone over the top. I'm really pleased with the results. It is probably 'overscale' on the surface roughness but gives the colour mix and texture I like about other peoples layouts on here.

 

The gound cover greenery is also taking shape and I have added the peco fencing behind the loading platform.

 

I've also shamelessly plonked planted a Bachmann loading gauge!

 

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I want to weather the ballast and siding a little - but I am worried/wary as I always seem to go too far and make it too dirty - but it looks a little clean at the moment.

 

Thats all for now.

 

Regards,

James

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Hi all,

 

I'm after a bit of advice on the positioning of my yard crane..

 

I'm unsure whether the best postion is on the loading platform, or at ground level...

 

On the platform (I favour this one):

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On the floor serving the other siding - the provinder store could well be closer with the coal on the other side at the buffer stop.

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Or in this postion on the platform - but I feel this surface is better served as a place trailers can back up against for loading - which would put the crane in the way?

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Any suggestions greatfully received!

 

Regards,

James

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My own personal reference would be on the platform. It looks right there and I think your argument regarding trailers backing up to the provender store works is perfectly reasonable enough to ensure the crane is correct on the platform. 

 

Great modelling; what locos are you planning to run? 

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On 28/04/2019 at 05:54, ModellerChris said:

My own personal reference would be on the platform. It looks right there and I think your argument regarding trailers backing up to the provender store works is perfectly reasonable enough to ensure the crane is correct on the platform. 

 

Great modelling; what locos are you planning to run? 

 

Hi Chris,

 

Thanks for the advice - I prefer option 1.

 

I've repainted in western region colours to better match what I want to run. I had intended to run mostly stream but I have several green diesels that I would like to run too.

 

I have a green class 20, 33, 35 and 25 and a class 105 DMU. On the steam side of things I have a jinty, pannier, 3MT, and a 2MT Ivatt 2-6-0.

 

I like to get the era and motive power about right - but I claim rule 1 on whether a certain loco might ever have been seen down Devon way!

 

regards,

James

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Put a wagon against it - and then think about what sort of load would be hanging from the hook - if you were thinking of a container*, then that crane probably isn't tall enough to lift one off a conflat, much less out of a higher sided wagon over this sides, if its mounted on the floor - and don't forget to allow for the ropes etc.

 

I think its going to have to be somewhere on that platform.

 

Jon

*in retrospect it looks a bit lightweight for a container as well, but the concept of making the crane fit the traffic 'on offer' stands.

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Hi all,

 

Thanks for the advice on the colours and crane. The crane will reside on the loading platform because, as suggested, it s proportions fit better.

 

I've also to weather the track and hard standing. I have previously dusted with an Airbrush to get dirty ballast in and around the track but I always leave it too late and find it difficult to a) get a good effect and b) not cover everything else I don't want to! So this time I have experimented with applying a thinned down dirty track colour with a pipette in the centre of the track. It spreads out a little and enables me to keep the area inbetween lines cleaner. I know some actually mix in colour with their ballast mix - I might consider that next time as I am quite pleased with the effect. You'll see I've also started to add grass clumps in random areas.

 

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The eagle eyed among you will notice that the Provinder store has morphed into a good shed on a platform. I've managed to accumulate many resin building options over the years and I feel I prefer this one - it has been painted in the same western colours used elsewhere and weathered a bit. It will be planted on the platform better when I have detailled the interior and placed thing inside.

 

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Next is the coal facilities...

 

All the best,

James

 

 

 

 

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Hi all,

 

Actually next is point control, not coal facilities!

 

I have not referred to this since stating I would be using seep solenoids in my first post. Well I got them set up and they were working ok, but after ballasting they were not as reliable. Now this is obviously mostly my fault (if not all), but it prompted me to re-think and not use them going forward. I do like the feel of manual wire in the tube - and it is very straightforward and reliable. Therefore I am now using gaugemaster polarity switches to deal with the frogs and seperate wire in the tube for the point control.

 

One of the things I would like to add is the ability to control the points from the front at home, and the back at exhibitions (if I ever get that far). So to get this ability - and the option to remove the front operation when required - I have come up with the following. I don't claim it as my idea as it is a combination of the materials I have around and the experience I have gained on here....

 

So the wire push pull to the top of the picture is for the back of the layout (it is earth wire stripped from spare wire I have lying around) - and the middle choc block allows me to pull the wooden dowel from the front by screwing it down on the wire and the empty tube inserted in the end of the wooden dowel. I can remove the wooden dowel if desired, leaving only small holes at the front of the layout:

 

NOTE: I am aware I need to be careful about shorting/touching the bus wires - it is not as close as it seems below and I intend to be safer still by adding tape to insulate locally.

 

20190527_132656.jpg.b6837b3c3d39a065937683c06ad1fef1.jpg    20190527_132702.jpg.995e15abef7abe0baef066f3504e6847.jpg

 

So the loop pull is at the back...

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And the dowels protrude at the front...

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It takes a bit of fine tuning to get everything working as resistance free as possible - but I am very pleased with the results.

 

Cheers,

James

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The layout's looking great James. How does the polarity switching work, do they switch automatically? I've always used push rods from the front to operate my points but struggled with ways to change polarity.

Steve.

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Posted (edited)

Hi Steve,

 

Thanks for the kind words.

 

I've only just realised that I was following your layout metcalfe yard - great layout - I'll keep an eye out for your other layout too.

 

I've used the Gaugemaster polarity switches (DCC80) - you can one in the second picture of the underside in my post above, fed by a green/white/yellow wire. It detects the need to switch polarity as the loco runs over the point before the chip/controller senses a problem. They are about £5 to £7 each so more expensive than setting up a micro switch against something that moves - but it is much easier in my opinion. Two bus wires (green and white) and the frog feed (yellow) in....and it deals with it all.

 

Edit - this method will only work with DCC.

 

I had started with seep point motors - which have a polarity switching function - but after ballasting they didn't work too well (which is more my fault than theirs) - and to be honest I prefer the feel of manual operation. None of my layouts are that complicated!

 

cheers,

James

Edited by jamest
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