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Aston On Clun. A Great Western might have been.


MrWolf
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5 minutes ago, Gopher said:

Ohhhhh! - I need time to absorb this news.  Came as a great shock.  No bridge no bus,  I must go and lie down.  

 

Meh, it's a fictional Great Western branch line, set in one of the most rural outposts of Middle England back in 1938 when Britain still had a voice on the world stage.

 

How many more clichés do you need? :jester:

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14 hours ago, MrWolf said:

 

Do you remember the booming voice of the late Ulster Unionist The Rev Ian Paisley?

 

NO!

There will be NO buses!!

NO NO NO!!!

 


Only because in his part of the world the buses were likely to be hijacked and set on fire! It wasn’t a proper riot unless an UlsterBus ended up being torched! :wacko:

A bus left on a bridge would most likely get a visit from the Bomb Squad! :bomb_mini:

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5 hours ago, MrWolf said:

 

 

Meh, it's a fictional Great Western branch line, set in one of the most rural outposts of Middle England back in 1938 when Britain still had a voice on the world stage.

 

How many more clichés do you need? :jester:

One thing I've learnt in life - you can never have too many cliches.  You'll be telling me you will be setting it in mid winter rather than the idyllic summers that most model GW branch lines thrive in.   I'm sure there must be a rule book for modelling GW branch lines - I'm off too Google it. 

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I like the back story, always good to have a sense of place, even if like me you have to invent a whole valley that doesn't appear on any map.

I will be following your progress with interest.

 

Re Gopher's comment. I don't think there is any rule for modelling a GWR branch as most weren't built by the GWR!

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32 minutes ago, Darwinian said:

I like the back story, always good to have a sense of place, even if like me you have to invent a whole valley that doesn't appear on any map.

I will be following your progress with interest.

 

Re Gopher's comment. I don't think there is any rule for modelling a GWR branch as most weren't built by the GWR!

That is impeccable logic Darwinian, plus my Google search drew a blank.   Looks like the world is your creative oyster Mr Wolf.  So no bridges or buses it is.  

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Looks like I found somewhere obscure enough. Technically, it is a valley, you need an OS map to figure it out and it would have been enough for a railway company to have used the name. 

Below is the old hall, the railway would have skirted around the grounds to the left of it.

03000a9b.jpg

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Google sucks, couldnt screenshot the page of Aston On Clun, plus you wouldn't get a signal there to search for it! Here it is courtesy of Ordnance Survey sheet number 70, a version so old that it shows the Bishop's Castle Railway as still operational. 

IMG_20201117_185528.jpg

Edited by MrWolf
Stupid autocorrect
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One thing that I was keen to avoid was just because I had long straight and relatively narrow baseboards, I didn't want the track to be dead straight and the geography of the local area provided the perfect excuse for some curves. If the branch struck west from Craven Arms, or via running powers on the LNWR Central Wales line, a junction at Brooches, the line would run on levelish ground to the north of what is now the B4368 Clun Road. It would then skirt the base of Aston hill, cross Mill Lane and curve south west past Aston hall. It would then cross the B4368, pass through the station and be forced to perform a bit of a wriggle to cross both a mill leat and the river Clun in quick succession. It would then keep south of the road, crossing the river several times before terminating at the south east corner of Clun itself.

This gave me the perfect excuse and one board that is dedicated to a double curve and the river. If we move and have less space, this board could be omitted and the layout would still be completely functional. 

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Once I have got all of the track finalised and permanently wired ( I have run a few trains already ) I will concentrate on the topography, which will mean replicating this river. Any advice would be most appreciated.

(Image c.Jonathan Wilkins from geograph.org reused under creative commons)

 

398204_f5f35882.jpg

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One of the main things that attracted my attention to the minor railways of Shropshire was the surviving crossing keepers houses along the old Shropshire & Montgomeryshire Railway route. I could find plenty of photographs and had passed by enough of them over the years. Could I find a drawing? Nope. But I figured that I could Scale and create a drawing using known dimensions such as doors.

 

 

C__Data_Users_DefApps_AppData_INTERNETEXPLORER_Temp_Saved Images_images94ADPWPO.jpg

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It has probably occurred to a lot of people that a lot of minor railways are built to a similar design and that the original crossing keepers houses on the Garstang & Knott End Railway are identical (or near as dammit ) to those in Shropshire. Very handy, as I knew someone who lived in one. She was concerned about getting booted out as there are 300 affordable homes planned for the site. (Affordable for whom she was rather cynical about) Anyway, predictions were right and the house is now empty. So I took the opportunity to get photos and measurements. The white stucco is a "civilian" addition. 

Naturally, as soon as I made a drawing, the Cumbrian Railway society published a very good book on the GKER ( probably a good read for @NHY 581 our sheep inspired comrade, he might be modelling Pilling pigs next! ) Which of course contained a damn good drawing of the standard keepers house. 

So that will be the first structure that I will attempt to build.

03001190.jpg

03001188.jpg

0300118e.jpg

03001192.jpg

Edited by MrWolf
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7 hours ago, MrWolf said:

So I set about building a bridge. The girders are based on a GWR bridge I have a photo of. I don't know the location, but number 1421 is headed across with an autocoach. It was cobbled together using bits of Wills occupation bridges, the arc topped girder bridge they produce, Slater's brick embossed plasticard and 30 thou plasticard. Two of the abutments from the occupation bridges were assembled as per the instructions. The other two walls were cut into strips to make the stone foundations of the old trestle bridge. Bits were heated and formed around a socket wrench. I glued these onto a small base and built the brick pillars inside them, after which I applied a heavy concrete flaunching using milliput.

Everything had a thin coat of very dark grey to represent ash mortar, then individual stones were picked out in different gray / blue shades to try and represent the local stone. Over this was drybrushed lighter shades to off white, then sludgy pink/brown and moss greens near the water levels. 

The girders, after asking for advice on here, were painted in medium grey, actually HiCote automotive primer before a little drybrushed rust and a wash of mossy green in shaded areas. It may not show in the photos, but the slightly sparkly mica content of the rustproof grey paint was done with what (If I had had to buy it!) has to be the most expensive weathering powder on earth. As a result of one of those what you up to? conversations with Miss Riding Hood, she dug out the last tiny remnants of a metallic grey eyeshadow. Dust on, rub in, seal with hairspray. When I asked how much was a new one I got a dismissive "Oh about £20 a go...." 

But I reckon it would do the Tay bridge.

IMG_20201117_215027.jpg

IMG_20201117_214855.jpg

 

 

What a lovely looking model, Rob. 

 

Not sure what you have in mind for this but I can see it between two gently sloping , grassy banks with over hanging trees.....

 

With regards to modelling a river, take a look at Alex's splendid Diddington/Upwell Drove thread. You will have to search back but its a great thread. The link starts from his construction of Upwell Drove. 

 

 

Rob. 

Edited by NHY 581
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7 hours ago, fezza said:

There is an outstanding plan for a railway to Clun in one of Ian Rice's layout design books. It makes very good use of the bridge and village backdrop. 

 

I have just been talking to one of my railway / motorcycling friends about this. He said it was in a book on light railway layout design. The plans and sketches were for the terminus at the town of Clun itself, the exact route being left to the imagination. When we made the annual (not this year... :( ) pilgrimage to the Craven Arms vintage motorcycle rally, we did a bit of touring about and I mentioned my thoughts on the fictitious line in all probability running through Aston On Clun on its way up the valley. The subject had come up more than once on visits to Bishop's Castle. I do miss the town's beer festival and associated entertainment. Beer, bands, good food, railways, a couple of good book shops, rooting through piles of motorcycle parts..... Suddenly I'm not an atheist!

 

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17 hours ago, MrWolf said:

So I set about building a bridge. The girders are based on a GWR bridge I have a photo of. I don't know the location, but number 1421 is headed across with an autocoach. It was cobbled together using bits of Wills occupation bridges, the arc topped girder bridge they produce, Slater's brick embossed plasticard and 30 thou plasticard. Two of the abutments from the occupation bridges were assembled as per the instructions. The other two walls were cut into strips to make the stone foundations of the old trestle bridge. Bits were heated and formed around a socket wrench. I glued these onto a small base and built the brick pillars inside them, after which I applied a heavy concrete flaunching using milliput.

Everything had a thin coat of very dark grey to represent ash mortar, then individual stones were picked out in different gray / blue shades to try and represent the local stone. Over this was drybrushed lighter shades to off white, then sludgy pink/brown and moss greens near the water levels. 

The girders, after asking for advice on here, were painted in medium grey, actually HiCote automotive primer before a little drybrushed rust and a wash of mossy green in shaded areas. It may not show in the photos, but the slightly sparkly mica content of the rustproof grey paint was done with what (If I had had to buy it!) has to be the most expensive weathering powder on earth. As a result of one of those what you up to? conversations with Miss Riding Hood, she dug out the last tiny remnants of a metallic grey eyeshadow. Dust on, rub in, seal with hairspray. When I asked how much was a new one I got a dismissive "Oh about £20 a go...." 

But I reckon it would do the Tay bridge.

IMG_20201117_215027.jpg

IMG_20201117_214855.jpg

I like the bridge: rather reminiscent of the one at Outwell Basin I think.

As for hairspray, I'm currently going through loads of this. Amazon is your friend here. I got a job lot. Go for cheap, firm hold and preferably unscented.

Alex

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Thanks for the tip. I can't pinch too much of my girlfriend's, she doesn't use that much! 

I remember when I was a kid, Boots unperfumed hairspray was the thing. Not only was it cheap, it would turn a moth into a glider in seconds, all the Goth girls used gallons of it!

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Fortunately, she likes to do her own thing and has a very low opinion of what is classed as "street fashion" so wouldn't be seen dead in sweat pants, hoodies or "pouting into her phone with her face painted orange". Her words!

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After a couple of productive hours tidying and sorting out, I have plenty of room to work and the rest of the room looks pretty good too. Brownie points all round then. 

You know how it is, the unfinished layout becomes a shelf for other unfinished items. How I envy people who can work tidily on everything that they do. 

I needed some room to complete the line's fictional history, the lifting of the track in November 1961...

Not quite that severe, but here goes.

IMG_20201118_222250.jpg.710565bfae1933f81c808314d63f23a1.jpg

 

The original track layout with the loco shed siding to the left. 

IMG_20201118_223652.jpg.f3cecd8ef3b6704b4291934f4c819ae9.jpg

 

Track lifted back to the goods road. A specialised track lifting machine has been brought in from France for trials, it's known as "Le couteau a buerre" it is quite visible in this picture.

 

IMG_20201118_224216.jpg.66421383b526d869da551397007129c6.jpg

 

The final picture shows the back road reinstated. The next job is to fit a catch point in the loop and solder up the joints then I can cut the ends of the sidings to suit, finish wiring for power and points, then it's on with paint and ballast. 

That should conclude everything that I consider to be the foundations and I can be a bit more freehand with the rest of it, which is what I am looking forward to!

 

 

 

Edited by MrWolf
Stupid autocorrect ne comprend Pas la Francais
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Pretty damn good I would say. 

 

I really like the lack of 'straightness' to the plot. Quite the sinuous formation. 

 

Dare I say it but the river/bridge area already presents so many possibilities. 

 

Liking this a lot. 

 

 

Rob. 

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Having had a sort out last night, I set about reorganising the space I keep all my railway bits in. It is one of the five 1200x1200x600 bays created by the layout on its legs. The other four bays have been filled / reinforced with cupboards that I have donated to RRH for practical / brownie points purposes.

 

In my storage was a BOX.

 

Just an old banana box that is pretty much everything that survived of my old projects, there's another, smaller box of bits. Everything else, such as locos, I have picked up recently.

 

This is a CAUTIONARY TALE for those of you with a Watch List on eBay.

 

Before you click "bid" or "buy it now" have a look in the BOX. You have one, admit it!

 

We tipped the box out on the carpet this morning and took stock of the inbuilt wagon kits therein:

 

2 Flat wagons.

5 Brake vans.

11 Cattle wagons.

14 Wagon chassis.

36 Box vans.

47 Open wagons.

 

That's 115 wagons folks. Add to this the 45 assorted wagons ranging from mint to restoration project and I THINK I have enough to populate my layout.

The mistake I made is I didn't go through the BOX in secret. Which may mean that I owe somebody a 45 gallon barrel of her favourite Chanel this Christmas.

 

She thinks it's hilarious.

 

Needless to say, I have had a cull of my watch list!

 

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