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Horsehay Railway Modeller

A shropshire Branchline 1960s BR late crest

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4 minutes ago, MrWolf said:

I was interested in the backscenes that you have installed. Are they a commercially available item?

 

Yes they are indeed. They are ID Backscenes. made by a company called art-printers. i baught mine at hattons.  you can either buy them on photo paper or the "premium range" for a few punds more gets you sticky back paper with some sort of plastic coating. They come in 10ft packs i.e. 2 5 ft sections per pack and there are multiple joining packs - some up to 60ft long!   

 

I used Hills and dales Packs A and B to get 20ft.vlcsnap-2020-04-29-11h02m08s651.png.31f3eb6369c74e8bf992d58b0b5ea4fe.png

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A very interesting prototype, and one I've thought about a few times.  Though my interest has more often been on the ex-LNWR branch from Donington to Coalport. I still think that would be a great project for a group of module builders to get together on.

 

Now I stand to be corrected, but if I recall right, the line through Coalbrookdale split two ways, one via Madeley and skirting the Telford new town estates of Stirchley and Brookside (nothing to do with the TV soap) before reaching the mainline, and the other going to the West of Dawley and ending up at Wellington. The Madeley line stayed open to allow coal trains to get to Buildwas - you could feel them going past in our house in Stirchley - but the other line was cut short at Horsehay. The reason it was kept as far as Horsehay was the iron works there which required the railway to ship out huge gantries and the like. That should allow for some really interesting goods traffic

 

I moved out of Telford in 1980 but the Horsehay link was still open albeit seeing very little traffic

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4 hours ago, Horsehay Railway Modeller said:

 

Yes they are indeed. They are ID Backscenes. made by a company called art-printers. i baught mine at hattons.  you can either buy them on photo paper or the "premium range" for a few punds more gets you sticky back paper with some sort of plastic coating. They come in 10ft packs i.e. 2 5 ft sections per pack and there are multiple joining packs - some up to 60ft long!   

 

I used Hills and dales Packs A and B to get 20ft.vlcsnap-2020-04-29-11h02m08s651.png.31f3eb6369c74e8bf992d58b0b5ea4fe.png

Thanks for the information, I did consider handpainting a backscene based on photographs I took around Aston on Clun, but in the time it would take me to produce something close to a photographic likeness ten feet long, I could paint something to sell that would pay the bills for a month!

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Nothing major to report but lots of smaller projects. I have began converting to kadee couplers. I've had to hack about my old lima locos a bit but they have come out looking OK. I have also started on a few wagons. 20200501_143934.jpg.ede5e843fd68ef502ad082e90c73c9c8.jpg15886104730819066433210733468456.jpg.9afd542540154c30656a7fbaf005d706.jpg

 

I have also begun adding a main control panel which will be at the front of the layout by the signal box instead of off in one corner. 

 

I have added a little shelf for it to rest on. It will also provide a handy resting place for drinks etc. Whilst operating. 15886105655391537822662521947943.jpg.d1021434f6095528bb29f8ed707731f6.jpg

Finally I have removed the old panel and wired in the switches for the bus wires on a separate board. The wires you can see will be for a small panel up at the iron works whilst the majority of point switches will now be moved to be operated at the station. There also remains a panel in the fiddle yard. 

 

I had originally printed graphics for the boards in word, but am now trying out skribing the text in to plywood with a soldering iron. (don't worry I have a spare tip) 15886109668451887943960546118970.jpg.b17a9bc6459708129dc756f0be44245e.jpg

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Have you read the Middleton Press book by Mitchell and Smith 'Craven Arms to Wellington? 

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14 minutes ago, Happy Hippo said:

Have you read the Middleton Press book by Mitchell and Smith 'Craven Arms to Wellington? 

 i havent come across this yet. thank you very much for bringing it to my attention ill be sure to have a look at some point when in need of inspiration.

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Do you live in Horsehay?

 

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4 hours ago, Horsehay Railway Modeller said:

whilst not at university i am in the area yes.

That was the general answer I used to give. More specifically, the Crown & Anchor, Bishops Castle. I believe it's still trading.

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Posted (edited)

Antoher couple of little projects completed. i have modified all of my points using a method discovered on youtube from charlie at chadwick model railway. i have removed the springs on most of my peco points and they had a tendancy to slide down . charlie recomended a 1.5mm by 0.5mm strip of plasticard superglued to the sleeper next to the throw bar.  Now i have glued them all in place there is no posibility of them slipping down.20200504_145648.jpg.c561755c2640a6c91df37978a19382de.jpg

i have also purchased a new loco. a Hornby 61xx in br late crest. i have dcc fitted her with a lenz chip and will be re numbering her in the future to 6101 which was based at tyseley in the 60s.20200506_155719.jpg.c17304ee3f600dd99cf42c052ea4e105.jpg20200505_223200.jpg.46ab0732977d1477acf689d10ab2dfe8.jpg

you can also see above i have shortened the upper siding.  this will be where a small engine shed , based off of the one at much wenlock, will be situated. the  longer siding in front will be a spare goods siding . possiby with a small shed similar to that at much wenlock.

 

 

finally ihave installed the plywood supports for the new panel and wired tthe points to chocolate box. i am temporarily using the chocolate box connections to move points whilst i await some plywood to make the control panel faces.20200507_185132.jpg.2c4949d4b0f9eb20bea115e4e65eeaaa.jpg

 

not alot of other major progress has been made on the layout however i have been ironing out all of the little issues with track work and now the layout is all running smoothly, touch wood, except for two new Dapol 21ton mineral wagons which refuse to stay on the track. After reading other threads i think i will try buying new wheelsets for the wagons as people seem to think it is an issue with flanges on Dapol wheels.

 

i have also made some more design progress off of the layout. it may be due to recently submiting a CAD assignment for university but i have been designing lots of different features for the layout recently.  below are some mock ups for the works at the top of the gradient. i am basing it vaguely off of coalbrookdale works which has many different pitched roofs of all shapes and sizes over several connected buildings. They were also built to fit within the track.works.PNG.acc44c046a3c4a669a109f389c4d4f3b.PNG

 

 

 

Edited by Horsehay Railway Modeller
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Posted (edited)

I may be mistaken but wasn't there an old waggonway running up the dale, the remains of which being re-discovered in the 1970s. Might make a nice little cameo.

 

Another local site that might make a nice lineside feature is the terminus of that primitive waggonway, namely Ludcroft's Wharf on the River Severn. I think the Gorge museum has given it another name now but that's what I knew it as. Circa 1975 restoration had only got as far as tidying up the outside, go back another dozen years and with modellers license you could still have the remains of said waggonway terminating on the wharf

 

 

Edited by whart57
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The works would be a most interesting project to model and I can see that you are looking to represent the development of the buildings over time. I look forward to seeing it take shape as it was an early interest in industrial archaeology (trips to Ironbridge and Gloddfa as a kid were more interesting than Alton towers, I was a strange child) that got me interested in railway modelling rather than just running trains on a board.

I like the way you are using the studying process to include those "Government jobs", it's all good practice! I used the machine shop facilities at university to rebuild several motorcycles in my spare time, even wangled them into projects.

Your CAD sketch and comments got me thinking of a mixture of Victorian brick buildings around something in stone from the 1820s re-roofed in corrugated iron.

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On 05/05/2020 at 19:07, MrWolf said:

That was the general answer I used to give. More specifically, the Crown & Anchor, Bishops Castle. I believe it's still trading.

Which was the John Roberts (?) pub and brewery in Bishops Castle? Was it called the Three Tuns? I seemed to have sweat shirts from there for years. I think Deb must have bought them for me, as I'm not sure we ever went there together. 

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19 minutes ago, Oldddudders said:

Which was the John Roberts (?) pub and brewery in Bishops Castle? Was it called the Three Tuns? I seemed to have sweat shirts from there for years. I think Deb must have bought them for me, as I'm not sure we ever went there together. 

It was indeed The Three Tuns. I never managed to visit but it was on the bucket list as one of the very few own-brew pubs left in the 70s. I did manage to get to some of the others. Blue Anchor in Helston was a bit special: a rather feisty landlady and about an inch of yeast in the bottom of the glass. There was another in the Coalbrookdale area, also run by a woman.

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The Four Nations in Madeley? Not in Coalbrookdale as such, but in what is now Telford New Town (as is Coalbrookdale)

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Work has begun on scenery!

I was originally going to form all of the slopes / cuttings etc. With foam, however I am going for the much cheaper option ( as I already have it) of using cardboard formers.   

I have begun making formers for a slope/ cutting along the front edge of the layout. This will be filled with newspaper and covered in a mix of plaster bandage and sculptamold. 20200508_150944.jpg.2af818b588287a19895d613a3f06ba17.jpg

I began using currugated plastic for a solid front former. This will later be covered with mdf facia. 20200508_221754.jpg.c2421a5a4fad84f553ddf2a3ca23f35c.jpg20200508_221804.jpg.46e79a1ed80215bcafe6d9467f8223fa.jpg

I then added formers for the embankment with cardboard every three inches. 

 

I have also begun making a small raised area at the left hand side of the layout. This is so I can have a tunnel portal to hide the entrance to the fiddle yard. 

 

This area should be the power station but I don't have the room to do it justice. In my version of the layout the power station lays a mile or two further down the line. This will allow me to run coal trains off scene towards the imaginary power station. 

 

This end of the layout with the tunnel will be somewhat more fictional. Although I aim to have a rising valley with some sort of church similar to those in the local area. 

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Here is what I've done so far for the hill at the left end of the layout. 

20200508_232901.jpg.0434a5564c7d4d515389c4c3b2b8575f.jpg

 

And here is a terrible sketch showing my idea for the cutting with somewhat dense woodland and a small church halfway up the valley. Possibly in N gauge to create some. Forced perspective and distance. 20200508_232818.jpg.2dccf468759e08b0579c97d1063139f3.jpg

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9 hours ago, Oldddudders said:

Which was the John Roberts (?) pub and brewery in Bishops Castle? Was it called the Three Tuns? I seemed to have sweat shirts from there for years. I think Deb must have bought them for me, as I'm not sure we ever went there together. 

Yes, it was the The three tuns, one of the last pubs with its original brewery out back. They used to do a beer called Castle Steamer after the old Bishops Castle Railway. Potent!

It's a shame that the museum dedicated to what must have been the most ramshackle railway in Britain appears to have closed. We always had a look round when the town beer festival was on. This usually coincided with a vintage motorcycle rally near Craven Arms. There was also a second-hand book shop near the top of main street which had a lot of niche railway books at decent prices.

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2 hours ago, Horsehay Railway Modeller said:

Here is what I've done so far for the hill at the left end of the layout. 

20200508_232901.jpg.0434a5564c7d4d515389c4c3b2b8575f.jpg

 

And here is a terrible sketch showing my idea for the cutting with somewhat dense woodland and a small church halfway up the valley. Possibly in N gauge to create some. Forced perspective and distance. 20200508_232818.jpg.2dccf468759e08b0579c97d1063139f3.jpg

You are certainly making very fast progress with this, Horse!

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10 hours ago, Horsehay Railway Modeller said:

Here is what I've done so far for the hill at the left end of the layout. 

20200508_232901.jpg.0434a5564c7d4d515389c4c3b2b8575f.jpg

 

And here is a terrible sketch showing my idea for the cutting with somewhat dense woodland and a small church halfway up the valley. Possibly in N gauge to create some. Forced perspective and distance. 20200508_232818.jpg.2dccf468759e08b0579c97d1063139f3.jpg

 

I hope you don't mind me making more suggestions, but given the location you are setting your layout in - and the fact it isn't an exact representation of a particular location, have you considered having a pit mound or two instead of just generic hillside. Something like the Meadow Pit mound near Madeley - it's now a nature reserve along with several others inside Telford New Town. Now I believe that up to around the 1960s some of these pits though long closed, still had bits of mining clutter around them, like the shaft head gear. And they were very small pits, nearly all the East Shropshire pits were, so wouldn't take up much room.

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59 minutes ago, whart57 said:

 

I hope you don't mind me making more suggestions, but given the location you are setting your layout in - and the fact it isn't an exact representation of a particular location, have you considered having a pit mound or two instead of just generic hillside. Something like the Meadow Pit mound near Madeley - it's now a nature reserve along with several others inside Telford New Town. Now I believe that up to around the 1960s some of these pits though long closed, still had bits of mining clutter around them, like the shaft head gear. And they were very small pits, nearly all the East Shropshire pits were, so wouldn't take up much room.

And Snailbeach still has plenty of evidence of industrial activity, too. 

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1 hour ago, whart57 said:

have you considered having a pit mound or two

something else to think on. i agree it would be excellent to model ill see if theres anywhere that would work.  might have to be something airbrushed on to the backscene.

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Over the past few days i have made continued progress on the hillside (more to follow) and have also completed the new control panel.

This replaces a panel that was over to one side of the layout by a sofa. I have since found it makes more sense for it to be at the front of the layout and it just so happens now it will be opposite the signal box. 

The origional panel was made in word and printed and laminated. however i found it lacked character. I have grown to love the hand drawn style of all of the track plans in the book i have got on the wenlock line. (scroll up for photos) and decided to copy this style. i ended up using my soldering iron and some 3mm lazer ply, normal ply would probably have sufficed but i happened across some cheap lazer ply on ebay.20200512_173621.jpg.2f60f81b13ae43ba9860819c9b9aaf7d.jpg

 

I printed the basic track outline out from the computer and used grease proof paper to trace it on to the board. i then scrived it all with a very hot soldering iron.

 

i then proceded to add all of the little notes that add all of the character such as place names and sketches of the platforms and buildings.  I soon realised i needed some place names. In the end i settled on keeping Buildwas and Horsehay as they are off of the layout, However i needed to rename my semi fictional version of this section of line. as it is inspired by coalbrookdale station and works i needed a parody name. I ended up using a place name generator found on the internet which allowed be to generate a name based off of words and phrases.  I ended up with Coalorsdale. as in coal-horse-dale which seems a reasonable fictional place name whilst giving a very obvious nod to my inspiration of coalbrookdale .

 

I then wired up some toggle switches for the points into my previously installed chocolate boxes, before hot gluing the face on, hot glue is easily removable and therefore allows easy access whilst providing a semi permanemnt but hidden fixing.20200512_195018.jpg.109005b4ab9c7a25ab0a1126adeeae7a.jpg20200512_221350.jpg.f70c78d7eff0a2d2124e5b7476226bbc.jpg

 

I still need to make a similar panel for the iron works however I am going to leave the storage yard points on their origional panel - i think ill eventually  fit a dcc decoder to the off scene so they can be controlled from anywhere around the layout. 

 

 

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As stated above i have also made progress on the cardboard formers for the terrain. 20200513_141805.jpg.093e0e110ebca477a4393da97f4d9330.jpg

 

the main strucutre consists of corrugated plastic, whilst formers for the terrain are cardboard.I have also been very careful to line the back edge of the hill with corrugated plastic , ensuring no hot glue touches the backscene, i hope this will aid in its eventual removal, allowing the backscene to be removed or replaced without touching the hillside.

 

you can also see a flat level at the top ogf the hillside for the church to sit.

 

20200513_182709.jpg.c12a50ca574893b2814ebf9329bf8f9e.jpg

 

I then added a seemingly endless number of cardboard formers and am now finishing off with some masking tape to add more supports before plaster bandage is applied later in the week. i hope to add a finishing layer of sculptamold, a mix of plaster and paper pulp, which will be used to finnish all and texture of the terrain before painting.

 

Finally for tonight i ended up raising the level of the river by about an inch so as to make the banks slightly shallower. This has helped slighly however the slopes are still going to be a little steep. As this is in no way an exact representation of the river severn Iam thinking of putting some sort of rock face on one side allowing me to put a riverside gravel track in (possibly with some semblence of a plateway or wagon way) 20200513_182715.jpg.40d03cc272610d7181cee2329c13e263.jpg

 

for river crossings i am thinking of a viaduct for the mainlines as they are curved, and some sort of steel girder bridge for the branchline serving the iron works. 

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