Jump to content

Tulloch Bridge, West Highland Line, Mid 2000's - Present day, 4mm Scale


Recommended Posts

Layout Name - Tulloch Bridge
Scale/Gauge - 4mm, 00
Size - 5ft x 18" Scenic (Eventually 13ft x 18" including traversers)
Exhibition layout, or stay-at-home? Exhibition
Type - End to End
Era/region/location - Mid 2000's - Present Day, West Highland Line

 

Hi All

 

I've recently moved back to 4mm scale after many years modelling in 2mm.  My previous layout Ketton Cement has now been broken up and all the 2mm rolling stock I had has been sold.  Topic for Ketton is here: 

As I don't have a massive amount of space to build the 'big' 4mm layout I have planned, lockdown and being furloughed from work has given me the opportunity to start a small scenic layout which I have a chance of finishing in a relatively short space of time as I have a deadline of end of March 2021 to hit.

 

IMG_0337.JPG.466bdc85c78b29136202c315bcb1fe2d.JPG

 

The scenic section of the layout utilises one of Tim Horns excellent 5ft x 18" scenic boards with integrated lighting pelmet and will be joined by a traverser either side in due course.  This has really challenged me to design something achievable but also something which will keep my interest (and hopefully others) as well as something simple.  I didn't want to fill the baseboard with track so a station was the natural choice.  The other reason for the small size is that I no longer have a works van to transport layouts around the country so this is all designed to fit into the back of my VW Passat estate.

 

demu_DSC_0300.jpg.dd2256bcc65bbc9c063aa68634038494.jpg

demu_DSC_0299.jpg.00bdab7936d759f62919eb8d047c2e7c.jpg

demu_DSC_0276.jpg.15227ad1f60bcaa2093e04addf3dbf4b.jpg

demu_DSC_0279.jpg.1c7b5f94c2893e989fc94c0b9ee76114.jpg

 

 

The layout is inspired by Tulloch and Spean Bridge train stations where the usual single track of the West Highland Line splits into a double track allowing for a two platform station.  The station building itself is actually a shortened version of the one at Rannoch along with the signal box too.  I have designed all of the buildings and platforms myself and laser cut them.  The station building still needs a roof along with windows and doors but I have the design for these, I just need to find the time to build them.  The signal box featured in my photos was a test build of a kit of parts so now I have made a few corrections to the design, I'll build a brand new one for the layout.

 

demu_DSC_0289.jpg.35812334ca6c2abb10a4a1afbac2831e.jpg

demu_DSC_0290.jpg.120f464f85be2f8013b8a49952de5776.jpg

demu_DSC_0294.jpg.b131e372d3d12052297b837a262cf504.jpg

 

Track is all hand built using my own laser cut plywood sleepers, Peco pandrol chairs and code 83 flat bottom rail.  The turnout is based on B8 geometry and is roughly the same length as a MK3 coach so gives a nice curve.  Trains will be controlled by DCC and the only turnout will be controlled using a servo using EzyBus.  This system will also be used to switch relays to control layout lighting and the RETB signals.  I have designed a control panel which integrates the Arduino parts into a reverse engraved mimic panel which only requires an RJ45 cable and 2.5mm jack to connect to the layout, reducing all the usual wiring.

 

IMG_0233.JPG.4ba1acba7c2af1a2212dccb38745f2d4.JPG

demu_DSC_0271.jpg.59ec8de5257bd4e71430335a89198ed8.jpg

demu_DSC_0273.jpg.7b90fb5139874a1ef637d03ee447c514.jpg

demu_DSC_0268.jpg.68fb056601852c57d5955df22391ee82.jpg

 

I'm happy with progress so far and already have the contours of the scenery planned to make the layout look less flat and also less narrow.  I've also got a lot of pine trees to build, for this I will follow Luke Towan's tutorial on YouTube.

 

Cheers

Martin

 

 

 

  • Like 17
  • Craftsmanship/clever 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Now that looks very nice and those buildings are excellent. You should consider selling them as kits - I'm sure there's lots of folks out there would be very interested in a West Highland building of that quality.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, scottystitch said:

Ketton Cement was broken up?!...:(

Yeah I’m afraid so.

 

There was a group interested in buying the layout with all the stock but the deal fell through in the end.

 

The baseboards were sold to a fellow club member after I’d stripped them back.

 

Ketton was on the exhibition circuit for 3 years and visited many shows in Scotland and England and also won two awards, one being at Model Rail Scotland so I was pleased with it all.  I just felt it was time to move on as I was getting frustrated with fiddly details and locos which needed constant care and attention, plus the eyesight is starting to go downhill so it was time to move up a scale.

 

Cheers

Martin

  • Friendly/supportive 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Rammstein2609 said:

I have designed all of the buildings and platforms myself and laser cut them.

 

Excellent use of laser cutting tech there. It’s nice to see the station building with the correct wall texture. I’ve no doubt that it’ll be well worth watching your progress with this layout. Great stuff so far!

 

David

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi All

A quick little project this afternoon was this little cabin which is based on the one currently sat in the yard next to Tulloch station.  Presumably it's some sort of workers mess room with a generator in the left hand berth.  I've made the main structure from 0.8mm board then the outer ribs and details are overlaid in 0.5mm board.  I tried to re-create the lifting loops on each corner of the roof but crushed them a little so will modify the design to have slightly larger openings to push these into.  The vent grille has been cut down to 0.2mm bars and the door handles have been made from 0.3mm brass wire.

I'm just waiting on a paint order arriving before I can prime and paint this one ready for the layout.

Cheers
Martin

Tulloch cabin 1.jpg

demu_DSC_0314.jpg

demu_DSC_0316.jpg

demu_DSC_0317.jpg

  • Like 10
  • Craftsmanship/clever 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi All

Another quick update on work carried out today.  The electrics are almost complete, the building/platform lights and RETB circuits will be set up once they're actually added to the layout.  These will be controlled from a relay board as it reduces the wiring required from the control panel.

 

IMG_5124.JPG.b7d217e30d87cf2e05fcdc4c60093c1d.JPGIMG_1644.JPG.f79c580b49be3f058c432a77c378142d.JPG

The lighting pelmet now has a length of aluminium section specific to LED strips along with a plastic diffuser.  This helps to give an even light and reduces the individual 'spots' you normally get from LED strips.  The LED's I'm using are called RGB + CCT which features an RGB LED alongside a warm white/cool white combined LED.  This is hooked up to a specific controller which also contains an RF receiver for the remote control.  This has allowed me to hide this on the layout as there is no need to have an IR receiver.  The remote control allows you to change the colour of the LED's and control functions/timers but it also allows to you change the temperature of the white.  There are 6 presets and these can be adjusted using the + & - buttons.  This allows you to set the feel of the layout depending on the season and time of day which is quite nice.  I tried to record a video to show the different temp's but the camera couldn't really pick the differences up.

 

IMG_3154.JPG.dca5a9a3217b9940b36131f87ed11504.JPGIMG_0689.JPG.3754b7dfc74ffe9f96701bad99232317.JPGIMG_6637.JPG.7a0fc8fe59812c07e3ecfed84add5948.JPG


The control panel has been wired up and works well.  I had to use 4.7K resistors for the blue LED route indicators which is great in person but the camera picks it up as a really bright light.  The Arduino for the EzyBus system displays the layout name but also lists what each switch is controlling when they are actuated.  This is great for fault finding which I haven't had to do yet luckily.

 

IMG_5726.JPG.e370d7e3b6e00b8cfaaa3f04629f87e2.JPG

Lastly, I picked up two new arrivals from Rainbow Railways today ( Usual disclaimer applies).  These are Realtrack Class 156's re-painted into Scotrail 'Swoosh' livery.  These look fantastic as Colin has used his printing machine to give a factory finish to these models so everything is lined up perfectly and paint is loverly and crisp.  I believe these are the only two he has done so far and they will eventually be joined with other stock suitable for a 2004 running session.  I will also add sound into them along with the rest of the fleet.

 

IMG_3393.JPG.8c20e39851b1e626bd79b769b96cc2ec.JPG

I did try to take some better photos with my DSLR today but my SD card decided to give up so I've ordered two replacements which should arrive tomorrow.

Cheers
Martin

  • Like 14
  • Informative/Useful 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi All

Today I managed to finish the electrics and fully test them so everything works as it should.  I replaced the tie bar on the turnout as I wasn't happy with it and it didn't operate very well.  The new one is much better functionally and will eventually be disguised so it's less obvious.  Track has had an initial spray of sleeper grime so I'll hopefully get to paint the rails and chairs tomorrow.  Ballasting will have to wait though as I'm waiting on a paint order arriving so I can paint the platforms and fix them in place.

 

demu_DSC_0354.jpg.6a6bcfa6e4eaf2a7e91b0ba173e9b14c.jpg

1658561005_demu_baseboardendview.jpg.e51ba1049fb6432361cbc0a5dcc28401.jpg

demu_DSC_0355.jpg.d3c01c90a24f96fd3797800c8804bac5.jpg

demu_DSC_0356.jpg.462ae316b6132ee5fc6268a60d98c209.jpg

My new SD cards arrived today so I managed to get some photos taken in the garden before the light disappeared.  

 

demu_DSC_0360.jpg.0e1f88d18e55d2132422fbf5786abea1.jpg

demu_DSC_0361.jpg.462b3bb71ec2903bac6a7406cad4a5a0.jpg

demu_DSC_0362.jpg.0133156ea72d95f7694e0d5c66c5a056.jpg

Cheers
Martin

 

  • Like 12
Link to post
Share on other sites

Its a shame you've given up on 2mm Martin, but this new project does look stunning!

 

I'm a real fan of that early National Express Scotrail livery too - and those 156s look beautifully resprayed.

 

The LED strip looks really interesting too - they seem to move on really quickly - I bought an RGBWW strip a year or two ago and was really impressed, but RGB+CCT looks even better. The controller looks handy - I had been experimenting with Arduinos to control the colour via PWM as controllers seemed quite poor value, but that side of things has probably moved on quite a bit too?

 

On 11/08/2020 at 21:09, Rammstein2609 said:

Another quick update on work carried out today.  The electrics are almost complete, the building/platform lights and RETB circuits will be set up once they're actually added to the layout.  These will be controlled from a relay board as it reduces the wiring required from the control panel.

 

IMG_1644.JPG.f79c580b49be3f058c432a77c378142d.JPG

 

 

I was briefly a member of MERG, but felt a bit out of my depth - I don't remember seeing the EzyBus system though - could you talk us through what you're doing with it here? Is it just linking the input and output pins of a pair of Arduinos over a bus wire? How does that relate to the relay board?

 

Cheers

 

Justin

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • RMweb Gold
On 09/08/2020 at 00:13, Rammstein2609 said:

Yeah I’m afraid so.

 

There was a group interested in buying the layout with all the stock but the deal fell through in the end.

 

The baseboards were sold to a fellow club member after I’d stripped them back.

 

Ketton was on the exhibition circuit for 3 years and visited many shows in Scotland and England and also won two awards, one being at Model Rail Scotland so I was pleased with it all.  I just felt it was time to move on as I was getting frustrated with fiddly details and locos which needed constant care and attention, plus the eyesight is starting to go downhill so it was time to move up a scale.

 

Cheers

Martin

 

I thought it was a wonderfully realised and presented layout. The presentation in parcticular was excellent.  I missed it being for sale...,otherwise...

 

Anyway, good to see another Scottish model and in a period virtually untouched.

 

Best


Scott.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Super project - very neat !

shame you can’t  backdate Slightly to late 90s and the wonderful assortment of 37s that was about 

  • Agree 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, justin1985 said:

Its a shame you've given up on 2mm Martin, but this new project does look stunning!

 

I'm a real fan of that early National Express Scotrail livery too - and those 156s look beautifully resprayed.

 

The LED strip looks really interesting too - they seem to move on really quickly - I bought an RGBWW strip a year or two ago and was really impressed, but RGB+CCT looks even better. The controller looks handy - I had been experimenting with Arduinos to control the colour via PWM as controllers seemed quite poor value, but that side of things has probably moved on quite a bit too?

 

 

I was briefly a member of MERG, but felt a bit out of my depth - I don't remember seeing the EzyBus system though - could you talk us through what you're doing with it here? Is it just linking the input and output pins of a pair of Arduinos over a bus wire? How does that relate to the relay board?

 

Cheers

 

Justin

Hi Justin

 

The EzyBus system has been designed and developed by a MERG member who has published all the necessary details in order to allow anyone to build the system as it currently isn't supported by MERG itself.  The only thing you can get from the kit locker are the PCB's for the input and output modules.

 

Basically, the system has been designed using Arduino modules and will allow you to control up to 128 outputs per system.  These outputs can be servos (you can add servo bounce too for semaphores) or digital only outputs which can be used to power LED's and relays.  The output module also allows you to control a servo and digital output on the same channel so you can control the frog polarity with a relay when the servo moves.

 

ezybus_test.jpg.391a5f3883dcafaccf391abf950d2127.jpg

 

The above photo shows a test system I rigged up when I was trying this out.  The Master module (in the blue rectangle) is an Arduino UNO with an LCD & Keypad shield added on top.  The sketch (software) for the UNO is easy to download and if you know what you're doing, you can also change a few things such as the layout name to display on the screen.  The master effectively controls the whole system by reading inputs from the input module then telling the output module what to do.

 

The Input module (red circle) has 16 inputs which I've used toggle switches to control.  This reads the state of the switch and relays this information to the master so it can work out what action to take.  This board contains an Arduino I/O module which isn't programmable.

 

The Output module (orange circle) utilises an Arduino Nano to power servos and the digital outputs.  Each Output module has 8 outputs which is extremely handy if you've got loads of turnouts and/or signals.  The master module allows you to program the movement and speed of each servo and this data is then saves onto the Nano until changed again.

 

The whole system reduces wiring because each of the modules run on an i2c bus for data and a 12v bus for power.  This effectively means that you can have one master, 8 input modules and 16 output modules per system.  It is also very cost effective if you shop around for the Arduino parts.  The last time I checked, the parts needed to run 16 servos came in at under £15 (not including the servos, relays or switches) so if you include a decent servo like the Hobbyking ones I've used then add relays and toggle switches, it comes in at around £4.20 per turnout.

 

I've probably left some info out in the above explanation but the person who designed the system has uploaded a 32 page booklet explaining how to build, program and setup the system.  It's a well thought out design and is kind of open source because you can infinitely customise the system or design new add on modules if you know about Arduino.

 

I hope that helps.

 

Cheers

Martin

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi All

 

Further to the topic of Arduino from above, I wanted to build a representation of the RETB signals on the WHL for this layout so thought that using an Arduino Nano would be the most cost effective way to go since I had a few spare.  I worked out the sketch using some Arduino examples and uploaded this to the Nano.  This version allows for the control of 4 LED's in 2 pairs which will allow me to control both sets of RETB signals at each end of a station.  I only require one for Tulloch Bridge but this will come in handy for a much larger project in a few years time.

 

Anyway, the idea is that the LED's will connect to this board along with the toggle switches required to change the state of each from solid blue to flashing blue.  Instead of writing a technical report on what/why/how I did it, I thought it would be better to upload some images of a small demo display I've built for use at exhibitions.

 

IMG_4766.JPG.da19e579a749fe035805920756d66327.JPG

 

This is the Nano fixed onto my own custom board using veroboard.  This allows for the LED resistors to be soldered to the board meaning that all I need to do is run wires from the LED's directly into this board.

 

IMG_6538.JPG.c344fc1c5d080d3d19b6e92f52752477.JPG

 

This shows how I've connected two toggle switches to control 4 LED's.

 

IMG_1842.JPG.4d889c8ab7b2f713daff171ec62ef87e.JPG

 

Here is a very quick mockup of the RETB boards.  The signs were drawn up in Photoshop using photos as a guide then printed onto photo paper.  When I do this for my layout I reckon I will varnish the photo paper after printing as it is easy to damage during construction.

 

Lastly, here is a quick video showing the different states when activated:

 

Cheers

Martin

  • Like 7
  • Craftsmanship/clever 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Only just found this after being tipped off Martin!

 

Sorry to hear about Ketton Cement but this looks like a great project.

 

Watching with interest :yes:

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All

Progress on the layout has slowed as I recently returned to work from Furlough so I've been trying to get some painting done as and when I find some time.

The platforms are coming along nicely, I just need to finish painting the edging strips on top along with the tactile paving before adding a few washes to tone everything down.  Once this is done, I can add them to the layout and then ballast the track which has had a coat of sleeper grime and rusty rails.  The bare MDF platform tops will eventually get a layer of finely crushed ballast which is typical of WHL stations but this will only be added once the buildings and footbridge have been completed and added.

One job I did manage to finish (still needs weathering) is the temporary workers cabin for the yard.  I've sprayed it up with Humbrol Matt 121 then painted the doors Phoenix Precision P232 SW Trains Blue.  The base has been painted Phoenix Precision weathered black and then the lifting hooks painted with their P977 track colour.  Finally the door handles have had a coat of Humbrol metallic 11 and now I'm happy with the results.  It's not an exact replica of the real thing but it's a representation designed to fit into a particular space.  Photos show up some marks on the surface of the paint finish but in the flesh it looks far better.  It will eventually get a light coat of weathering before being added to the layout.

Cheers
Martin

demu_IMG_9120.jpg

Tulloch cabin 1.jpg

  • Like 14
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
On 10/08/2020 at 18:41, Rammstein2609 said:

Hi All

A quick little project this afternoon was this little cabin which is based on the one currently sat in the yard next to Tulloch station.  Presumably it's some sort of workers mess room with a generator in the left hand berth. 

 

 

 

Hi Martin,

 

Left hand door is the 'thunderbox' usually, right hand door is the messing/office area. The genny/storage area  is though the double doors on the end.

 

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.