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Die Ercallbahn - Fulfilling a childhood dream.


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The answer was, of course, either 'Yes' or 'No'- anything else was answering a different question.


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With a temporary surface a quick check of the track layout at Maifeld was possible. From left to right there is Gleis 5, a bay for postal coaches and wagons, a platform, Gleis 4 & 3 (with the passenger train) for trains to Bremen, another platform, Gleis 2 & 1 for trains to Hamburg and another platform. The board over the tracks id where the street and station building will be. The upside-down tracks at the front are part of the Rangierbahnhof which will be about 6" lower than the main station.

 


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Like an iceberg most of the station will be hidden from view.

 


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The passenger train is now posing in the shortest through platform. On the right the tracks are as follows (from back to front) anti-clockwise circuit, clockwise circuit, line to off-stage goods yard, transfer line for goods yard, clockwise circuit, anti=clockwise circuit.

 


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The off-stage goods yard is rather small but gives a destination for a couple of wagons and a home for the Kof.

 


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The post bay is long enough for a coach, which stays there for part of the day, and a van which doesn't.

 


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Looking along the station throat.

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The infrastructure work at Maifeld has impeded access to other parts of the Ercallverse so I must apologise for the delay in bringing you this instalment of our thrilling story.

 

 

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As I may have previously mentioned Schwarzfelsen's main industry is farming tourists. Virtually every building in the village is some form of cafe, guest house or souvenir shop. A few years ago a couple of the restaurants realised they were all using the same wholesalers and decided that everyone could make more money by clubbing together. This resulted in a local purchasing co-operative which has bulk deliveries to the station which are then divided up and delivered to the local businesses. This has been a great success and recently they have even started acting as a wholesaler selling to a couple of businesses in Schönblick.

 

Herr Rothe is the head of the co-operative and received a number of irate calls about the non-delivery of this weekend's alchol supplies. Having tried calling the station and got no answer he cycled down to see what is going on and is now wishing that he hadn't.

 

Her B. is officiously informing Herr R. that it is the Polizei who have called a halt to proceedings. Michael is steadfastly refusing to allow Herr R. to speak to the incarcerated lorry drivers and loaders. Meanwhile the two Manfreds, who passed Herr R. on the road, are waiting for him to arrive back at his restaurant and ar taking the opportunity to sit down with a coffee.

 

 

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The loaders at Neustadt have just finished unloading the incoming goods and are ready for the special shipment to arrive. The borrowed lorry from Maifeld Guterbahnhof rolled up a few minutes ago so all they need now is the wagon. Lacking any further instructions they are assuming it will come on the afternoon run from Maifeld Rbf.

 

 

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In line with Florian's rather vague instructions the branch crew have labelled the wagon up to return and, not unreasonably, have left it in the interchange siding.

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Yes! I obviously fell for the trick question! No! I did not realise it was a trick question!

 

However on a much more positive note good to see the commencement of the next stage of the layout Ian. One of the big advantages of this 'set track' type of trackwork is that you can get an awful lot of track into a small space and it does look good! However with your plan to put the townscape over I can see how it will create the illusion of a much larger space. I am assuming that the tracks will have catenary? 

 

Moving onto the continuing adventures on the branch line, which are becoming legendary, I did actually have to go back through the story to remind my self as to how this all started! The knock on effects of a 'liberated' crate of beer are indeed major. Incarcerated loaders and drivers, the entire police force of the area deployed to deal with this crime, somewhat dubious interviews of witnesses, business supplies in the locality disrupted! However despite all these major repercussions the most important question that I see now is where is Blitz? Has he secretly deployed himself in the wagon now standing in the interchange siding in the hope that it will take him to the beach or has something more sinister occurred? Personally I think given the characters involved the best chance of this crime being solved are with Blitz. However I could be wrong. Do you think that Blitz can solve the crime? Yes or no?

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32 minutes ago, Woody C said:

Do you think that Blitz can solve the crime? Yes or no?

 

Have you entertained the possibility that your question is fundamentally flawed and thus cannot actually be answered in any meaningful sense?

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Posted (edited)
35 minutes ago, Woody C said:

I am assuming that the tracks will have catenary? 

 

Indeed they will - with the exception of the line off to the alleged Guterbahnof.

Edited by ian
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Have you entertained the possibility that your question is fundamentally flawed and thus cannot actually be answered in any meaningful sense?

Errrr...No.

 

Is it another trick question?

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On 11/03/2021 at 06:33, Woody C said:

Do you think that Blitz can solve the crime? Yes or no?

 

On 11/03/2021 at 07:07, ian said:

 

Have you entertained the possibility that your question is fundamentally flawed and thus cannot actually be answered in any meaningful sense?

 

4 hours ago, Woody C said:

Errrr...No.

 

Is it another trick question?

 

All right, I'll take the bait.

 

I'll guess that Ian is pointing out that your question assumes that there has indeed been a crime.

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Posted (edited)

Indeed.

 

There are other philosophical possibilities - can a dog understand the concept of a crime let alone sift evidence and solve one. Even if said canine could and did how could it communicate the fact that it had done so - let alone the solution itself?

 

I think that another possibility is that I don't think.

 

Edited by ian
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15 minutes ago, ian said:

Indeed.

 

There are other philosophical possibilities - can a dog understand the concept of a crime let alone sift evidence and solve one. Even if said canine could and did how could it communicate the fact that it had done so - let alone the solution itself?

 

I think that another possibility is that I don't think.

 

All that assumes that the dog is real and not a 3.5mm/ft model...

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210312.jpg

 

Wood butchery in progress.

The top level is where the buildings will be, the middle is the station and the bottom is something else - certainly not the top-secret Maifeld U-Bahn.

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20 hours ago, ian said:

can a dog understand the concept of a crime

Having owned a dog or two, they can be very aware of their own transgressions....

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210316.jpg

 

Play testing time.

 

The infill section to join the Maifeld board to the ski jump has been cut and temporarily fixed in place. The inner of the two platforms for Neustadt bound trains has been put in position - this has the smaller radius curves and a reverse curve wiggle so is the bigger challenge.

 

Now to try running a few trains up it (or not, as the case may be).

 

Place your bets...

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Looking very impressive Ian!

 

That looks a fair old run down the ski jump - just trying to get some perspective on sizes - how long is that straight? Gradient wise if there is an issue you could always use a banker or even convert to a rack system but I suspect German engineering and your pre-planning will see trains romping up the hill without problem! 

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Not mine, but a masterclass in 1960s/70s German toy train technology.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
On 16/03/2021 at 17:51, Woody C said:

Looking very impressive Ian!

 

That looks a fair old run down the ski jump - just trying to get some perspective on sizes - how long is that straight? G

 

It is just over 8' between the Neustadt and Maifeld baseboards with a rise of 6".

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I have to say the photos and video seem to show that the centre support is a bit too low, making a short length of the slope appear to be steeper than the rest. Have you tried getting your eyeball or a camera down at rail level looking along the track, as that would show the changes in gradient?

 

 

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Amazing thread and layout!

 

When I started my first tour in Germany back in 86, I felt quite snooty about their adherence to 3 rail standards, but there was no escape from the inbuilt reliability. I loved the automated train set display in any railway station  of any size.

 

Great fun. I think "play value" is what's missing from most train set model railways available nowadays.

 

Angus 

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2 hours ago, AngusDe said:

Great fun. I think "play value" is what's missing from most train set model railways available nowadays. 

Good point. And not just train set models. I see layouts on RMweb where the track, scenery and buildings are to die for, and the trains are beautiful. But the operational possibilities are often very limited, and in not a few cases the builder soon disposes, rolls up their sleeves and starts again. He/she can't be wrong, of course, but clearly play value is not top of their priorities. 

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On 17/03/2021 at 13:19, ian said:

Not mine, but a masterclass in 1960s/70s German toy train technology.

 

 

Regardless of the detail and DCC abilities of today's model railways this just beats them all hands down! It does make you wonder whether if these systems were produced and retailed today if they would bring back younger people into the hobby. Strangely the day before you posted this I did come across some videos on Youtube of the old Tyco road system which has similarities to this. Thanks for posting this Ian. 

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