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awj.sompting

Hello from an aging new member who has several decisions to make

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Hi

I have decided to return to railway modelling after a 37 yr gap ( moves of home and life's commitments intervened).

in restarting I still have some nostalgic items that II would like to reuse but it may not prove feasible. eg i have the Triang Blue Pullman set, , a French Hornby SNCF bb16009 electric loco, a Lima GWR King Class that my son purchased a little while after a move of house when reinstatement of a layout was still being thought of, and a Western Explorer with a missing bogie but make not clear ( but not Hornby)

These plus associated rolling stock are accompanied by a Zero 1 Controller but it looks as though we only got as far as fitting a decoder on to an LMS 0-6-0 Tank engine before everything got taken down for a move of home.

As my interest is geared primarlily towards late Great Western steam and early Western Region diesel I did not want to have to start completely afresh but if I were to go for DCC I appreciate that converting items of their age may be problematic.

I have made a start and bought  a starter set of Peco track and bidding for a second-hand DCC controller on ebay. In the meantime I also need to get the attic boarded out to accomodate a layout although I am thinking of a very temporary limited set up in the garage for testing things out.

 

Any tips will be appreciated.

 

Alun

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Hi

I have decided to return to railway modelling after a 37 yr gap ( moves of home and life's commitments intervened).

in the meantime I also need to get the attic boarded out to accomodate a layout although I am thinking of a very temporary limited set up in the garage for testing things out.

 

Any tips will be appreciated.

 

Alun

Welcome to the forum. You describe yourself as aging, like many (including myself, 68) on this forum, and while I am not the best qualified to advise you on railway matters, I can tell you from experience that the attic is best avoided as the years mount up. I gave up my attic a few years ago because my knees objected to climbing a ladder, and I bought a couple of sheds to give me space in the garden. If I had a garage, I think I would have gone there instead. You will no doubt get some replies advising against the attic on building safety grounds, but I would advise you to think carefully on health grounds - will my aging legs still get me up the ladder in a few years? Sorry to sound pessimistic, but age catches us all : )

John

 

Edited to correct spelling

Edited by Jinty3f

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Hello Alun and welcome.

This is a great place to be with many helpful and skilled members who can offer loads of advice. I've certainly learnt a lot from them in the last few years.

I'm now 70 and what with replacement knee, arthritic hip and dodgy back have come to the conclusion that the loft is not the place for me. Layout is currently in a small spare bedroom with not enough room so am currently looking at large sheds/workshops for the garden.

Bob.

Edited by grandadbob
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I have a quite large loft layout and at present it's fine(I too am retired), but as the lads will tell you think about your personal mobility and whether something more accesable would be better, I am considering a move into a 14 foot by 10 garden building as an easier option for (hopefully) later years.

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As regards a home for your project, I agree that a shed or garage is better than an attic..... assuming you have the space/money.

 

Personally, I have just moved house just so that I could get a bigger shed (from 14x8 to 24x10) - a bit extreme but worth it.

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:senile: Welcome to the club! I guess I am fortunate with a big enough room, heated in the winter and A/Cd in the summer. The layout has been up around twenty years and everything still works which is just as well as the prospect of working underneath fiddling with wiring, etc, is daunting to say the least. My point is, avoid over ambitious layouts which may be hard to work on especially as tempus fugit. Over the years, I have gone from N gauge to O tinplate as our eyesight gets older as well. O is much easier to work on, to be seen and admired.

Don't get put off though, I am now 83 and enjoy my trains as much as ever :senile:

 

Brian.

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Welcome to our forum. Being a retiree, I also passed on the attic option and settled for the garage.

 

Security, weatherproofing and electrical safety are paramount so ensure entrance points are really secure, no rain or damp ingress and ideally provide a minimum 20 amp supply - it can get quite chilly and you'll need lighting plus of course it's nice to run trains!

 

Empty the garage completely beforehand, give it a good sweep out and vacuum, then seal the walls and floor to ensure further dust is kept to a minimum and is easier to hoover out occasionally. Cladding the interior walls and roof with extruded polystyrene sheets can give an additional measure of comfort all year round.

Edited by Right Away
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Does anyone ( not necessarily just model railway enthusiasts ) actually still use a garage to keep a car in?

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA

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Does anyone ( not necessarily just model railway enthusiasts ) actually still use a garage to keep a car in?

Yes. Not the one I drive every day though.

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WADR, I think the garage is not the best place, although better than nothing!  Both our cars are kept in the garage as like most places these days, winters are long and damp here.

 

Brian.

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Alun:

You should try out your older stock on the track you just bought, especially the points. Some of it may not like the modern standards.

 

I've wondered about a dual-standard layout with a loop of old track (and sidings) and a loop of newer fine track.

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Thank you all for the helpful comments. At the current time the loft is the only viable medium term option for me. The garden already has a small tool shed, my garden office ( which is 6x6 and already occupied by shelving, swivelseat and exercise bike plus wife has designs on it to be more of a garden summer room ) ), and greenhouse. The garage is only possible for a limited period as the spare space could be needed if my daughter needs to move back home at short notice which at notice which at the moment is an ever present risk and would involve stoting her furniture from a 1 bedroom flat. Altrhough not perfect in terms of accessibility the loft can be got ready in less time and less cost 

Am going to bid on ebay for a basic DC controller to start testing out the items that I have and continue to bid on ebay for a DCC controller and treat myself to a new loco ( tempted on getting a Hymek ) but the cost of getting up and running means that I can not rush too quickly into updating locos and rolling stock.

If I can not succeed in getting a DCC controller at a reasonable price on ebay I am giving thought to going the Hornby Elink / RM route as I have a laptop that has been largely replaced by a Notebook and a couple of semi redundant Android Tablets. Have been trying to find reviews / comments on this combination but the threads I have so far noticed  seem to date back 2/3 years.

Again thanks for your responses.

Alun

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As regards a home for your project, I agree that a shed or garage is better than an attic..... assuming you have the space/money.

 

Personally, I have just moved house just so that I could get a bigger shed (from 14x8 to 24x10) - a bit extreme but worth it.

Consider the possibilities of damp if using a garage/shed and use of greenhouse heaters etc, Where I live now on the S Coast my garage is too damp but where my Mum still lives (N Yorkshire) her garage would be reasonable to use as the area is much drier. Stuff my brother in law has stored there in his garage is hardly effected. Edited by john new

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John New

Thanks for the warning re damp as I also live on the south coast with the coastline between Brighton and Worthing being visible from my front garden. The garage door faces west with some funnelling effect towards it due to the driveway between the bungalows when the wind is coming from the west. Fortunately other than the area immediately behind the door I have not so far experienced any worrying dampness to stored items.

Alun

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One possible option that might or might not appeal, is an 'L' shaped layout inside the house.  That won't, of course, give you a continuous run, but would allow you some use (for household purposes) of the room it is it is in.  My layout takes up 2 walls of the spare bedroom.  It is enough for my SR branch-line.

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John New

Thanks for the warning re damp as I also live on the south coast with the coastline between Brighton and Worthing being visible from my front garden. The garage door faces west with some funnelling effect towards it due to the driveway between the bungalows when the wind is coming from the west. Fortunately other than the area immediately behind the door I have not so far experienced any worrying dampness to stored items.

Alun

Draught-proofing around all doors and crevices is advantageous and will minimize trespassing by arachnids and the like. We're only about 10-20 miles from your location and likewise the prevailing South-Westerlies can whistle between buildings but happily damp is not a problem. Copious amounts of tea in winter and the "odd" pint in the warmer months ensures working and operating the railway in the garage is pleasurable.

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Hello everybody, my name is Harry. I'm a new member but not a stranger to these pages and I am also a senior 70 year old person who has always had a small 12' X 8' purpose built workshop in my backyard which doubled up as the home to my 'plank'. Recently my wife bought a smallish detached bungalow with a spacious loft which would be ideal for a trainset and so forth but after doing a lot of electrical, plumbing and allied work up there via a loft ladder, I'm not going to use that space for anything other than storage because I have to admit that age has finally caught up with me. As an example only four months ago I would cycle and walk as much as I have always done but this work has taken a lot out of my knees and I am not a happy 'Bunny' any longer. However, fortunately, slightly to the rear of the said ground floor only abode there is a 'garage', 6m. X 4m., brick built by the 'won brick and concrete' process, a brick a day plus a bucketful of concrete for the base by the original owner in 1973. The existing garage base is a joke just like the walls, now all to be demolished and the base relaid. I'm surprised it lasted so long! However I have looked into the log cabin alternative, as many of my modelling friends have and also visited my neighbours Swedish 'shack' of the same dimensions and that will be the route I will be taking rather than struggling up a loft drop down loft ladder.  This approach has actually worked out at a much lower cost than a pucker stairway into the existing loft taking into account building regs. and is reasonably affordable. So long as does not intrude into my beer budget. Which is nothing like it used to be yet I still manage a couple a day. Happy Days!  

Edited by harry lamb
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On 21/01/2019 at 20:50, awj.sompting said:

Thank you all for the helpful comments. At the current time the loft is the only viable medium term option for me. The garden already has a small tool shed, my garden office ( which is 6x6 and already occupied by shelving, swivelseat and exercise bike plus wife has designs on it to be more of a garden summer room ) ), and greenhouse. The garage is only possible for a limited period as the spare space could be needed if my daughter needs to move back home at short notice which at notice which at the moment is an ever present risk and would involve stoting her furniture from a 1 bedroom flat. Altrhough not perfect in terms of accessibility the loft can be got ready in less time and less cost 

Am going to bid on ebay for a basic DC controller to start testing out the items that I have and continue to bid on ebay for a DCC controller and treat myself to a new loco ( tempted on getting a Hymek ) but the cost of getting up and running means that I can not rush too quickly into updating locos and rolling stock.

If I can not succeed in getting a DCC controller at a reasonable price on ebay I am giving thought to going the Hornby Elink / RM route as I have a laptop that has been largely replaced by a Notebook and a couple of semi redundant Android Tablets. Have been trying to find reviews / comments on this combination but the threads I have so far noticed  seem to date back 2/3 years.

Again thanks for your responses.

Alun

I'd beware of eLink as I found it was not very good with DCC chips other than the very basic ones. OK if you've only Hornby locos and chips otherwise caveat emptor.

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Welcome to the forum, Alun. As you have already discovered, it is a great place for advice and inspiration. 

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On 19/01/2019 at 20:14, awj.sompting said:

Hi

I have decided to return to railway modelling after a 37 yr gap ( moves of home and life's commitments intervened).

in restarting I still have some nostalgic items that II would like to reuse but it may not prove feasible. eg i have the Triang Blue Pullman set, , a French Hornby SNCF bb16009 electric loco, a Lima GWR King Class that my son purchased a little while after a move of house when reinstatement of a layout was still being thought of, and a Western Explorer with a missing bogie but make not clear ( but not Hornby)

These plus associated rolling stock are accompanied by a Zero 1 Controller but it looks as though we only got as far as fitting a decoder on to an LMS 0-6-0 Tank engine before everything got taken down for a move of home.

As my interest is geared primarlily towards late Great Western steam and early Western Region diesel I did not want to have to start completely afresh but if I were to go for DCC I appreciate that converting items of their age may be problematic.

I have made a start and bought  a starter set of Peco track and bidding for a second-hand DCC controller on ebay. In the meantime I also need to get the attic boarded out to accomodate a layout although I am thinking of a very temporary limited set up in the garage for testing things out.

 

Any tips will be appreciated.

 

Alun

After investigating the analogue/DCC issue I have decided I can accommodate both.

 

The critical bit is making sure you can't accidentally have the DCC power going into the straight DC locomotives. I plan therefore to wire the layout in switched sections for my older locomotives, and when the DCC is connected switch all sections to on.  Either the Powercab or the Combi will be connected, perhaps with a slider over the connection ports so that only one can be attached at a time.

 

I do not plan to have DCC control of my point motors (I'm sticking with probe and stud)

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