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Hello all.

Having spent about 6 months on Furtwangen ost and got it just about exhibitable, it is time to start planning the next one.

This time the aim is to get what I actually want- a roundy-roundy and a shunting plank in one, with the shunting happening at a higher level and self-contained. My primary interests are the late steam period in my native North East, and in NCB railways in the sixties and since. The layout needs to reflect both. the pic shows the sort of ambience I want for the colliery area.

 

post-13358-0-84477800-1361942861_thumb.jpg

 

My first planning ideas revolved around three boards, each 4' by 2'8 (ie such that they all came from one 8' X 4' plywood sheet). Then I decided that two 5' boards would be easier from the point of transporting them- I have a Grand C4 Picasso. It is for exhibition and home use. At exhibitions most people spend more time in front of roundy-roundies than shunting planks, hence the simple BR line.

Next- where to set it? I like to see an odd express as well as the slow freights, parcels etc, so a main line is essential. The East Coast Main Line passes through County Durham so that is a possibility, but on a 10 foot layout the fiddle yard wouldn't really do it justice (we found out with Farndon Road Mark 1 that a 12' layout is a bit short to do the ECML justice feeding trains onto a roundy-roundy). So, what alternatives? One would be to go to West Durham and use the Wear Valley north of Bishop Auckland (done- Bishop Wearburn, can't compete with that). Alternately to use the Leamside line but that would possibly tread onto Fence Houses territory.

Both of these lines also suffer from the bigger trains mainly being diversions, and that I didn't want. So the coast line it is. The problem with this is that the pits were big ones, Blackhall, Horden, Easington, Dawton, Seaham and Vane Tempest then you are into the Sunderland area. So where to put it? As you approach the Southern edge of the Durham coalfield there were quite a few smaller collieries, admittedly more to the West than the East, so a location near Blackhall might work.

Problem here is that the Coast Line is mostly on embankment and Blackhall Colliery was between the railway and the sea. So- it becomes ficticious to a certain extent. FILLPOKE LANE is exactly where I want the location to be, exxcept that it crosses under the railway to get to Crimdon Dene Holiday Park, of which more later. So, Fillpoke Colliery is a ficticious location on the landrward side of the Durham Coast Line, at the Southern edge of the coalfield.

post-13358-0-23181900-1333826829_thumb.jpg

First attempt at the trackplan at 10 foot length. The colliery lines will be at plus 2" to allow for them to be clear of the main line. Ideas please?

Edited by Les1952
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Note the trackplan evolved from its earlier provisional name of Crimdon Colliery. Minimum radius on main line 10.5" setrack, on colliery 192mm continental setrack.

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Hi Les,

 

This is some serious stuff your planning...good luck on your new voyage, and keep us all updated ;)

i'll select the follow button on this one...

all the best

 

Jack.

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Many thanks, Jack. I'll try to keep ideas on here in case I have some really stupid ones that need shooting down....

 

Just North of Easington Colliery, before you get to Hawthorn Quarries, there is a cutting through higher ground, which would suit, except the line is curving the wrong way at that point. Again there was never a colliery at this point but an older pit "could" have been there. A new pit would have too big a screening house for my purpose. Ownership would probably been Horden Collieries which I can cope with as far as the locos I have for the pit line.

 

However i would lose the holiday chalets as they aren't suitable for that part of the coast- waste dumped onto the beach, but could possibly make a waste tip in front of the railway a second feature - the first feature being the colliery headstocks.....

 

York show today. Time to get ready to go.

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Really pleased to see someone using the Durham coast line as the setting for a layout.

 

I've been trying to think of ways for you to show that the line runs near a scarred industrial coast without being able to model the beach and sea. I like the idea of a spoil tip in the foreground and, although I doubt if you have the depth to stretch the landscape as far as the beach, you could model the start of an ariel ropeway heading from the colliery towards the sea.

 

Do you have any plans to include a small station on the line or are you just wanting to watch the trains run through the landscape? It is different to see a layout without a station and if you wanted to add operational interest to the main line you could add a signal box and a loop...or two, where you can hold a Class 37 and it's rake of 21t hoppers while the local DMU service passes by.

 

Modelling the mid 60s there were still plenty of smaller collieries open although they were inland and most were soon to close. The coastal collieries were larger but a smaller colliery could have survived bringing coal to the surface as part of a larger combined mine?

 

If you're setting the layout in the southern part of the region I think, unfortunately, steam ended a few years before the area covered by Sunderland shed. Thornaby 37s were the regular motive power on colliery trips by the mid 60s. To be really accurate you'll need to model one derailed in the exchange sidings!...apparently a regular occurrence when they first started working into the collieries.

 

Personally I like your original name..Crimdon Colliery; a fictitious colliery but a real location which places the layout firmly on the Durham coast.......but please... no caravans!

 

Good luck with the new layout. This is an area I know well and don't ever remember seeing a layout built to represent the line between Seaham and Hartlepool.

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I like the plan too, the arial rope ways for spoil are so indicative of the area, I love the climatic scene in the original get carter under the seaward end of the drops. There was a good description of NCB lines in Backtrack in sept 2010 focussed on the Hartley main colliery lines, with some colour shots too.

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Greetings.

 

Very many thanks gents for the suggestions. The idea of the chalet park (not caravans) was that one of the Tyneside councils opened a holiday park at Crimdon for boys from distressed backgrounds, with the original buildings being old Northern General bus bodies, which I thought mioght be interesting (though it aquired prefabs later, some of which looked a bit like the Ten Commandments model)- a couple of bus bodies plus a prefab and a Nissen hut was what I had in mind.

 

Almost certainly going for early rather than mid to late sixties- I first visited Seaham Harbour in 1963, just able to see Milo and Mars, the ex-NER saddletanks, though sadly by then they were out of service.

 

No station and no pointwork at all on the BR line- its function is to supply a succession of trains while the real playing is on the colliery line. Trains would be a pair of expresses with A3 or A1 haulage (I have a pair of professionally made Foxhunter A1s which need some work), a pair of parcels with A3, V2, B1 or A2/2 (Cock O'the North needs work also!), two locals in each direction with DMU, Fairburn or G5, then a through freight each way, a Northbound steel plate Hartlepool to Sunderland with return empties, a dolomite train of Covhops, and full and empty coal trains - a total of somewhere between seven and ten trains in each direction, depending on length. WDs on the Covhops, a Tyne Dock O1 (which is another loco needing a job) on one of the steel trains, and plenty of J25, J26 and J27s. Were there any fish trains along this line?

 

Moving North into the Easington area also gives the possibility of an offstage link to the top of Hawthorn bank for stone disposal and to take coal to Hawthorn Cokeworks- that gives a bit more room to fit a landsale depot towards the left-hand end. The ropeway is also an attractive idea but would need to pass to the curve of the backscene to go offstage- I'll have to think about how this can be managed.

 

Plenty to think about-

 

I'll work up a second version of the trackplan over the next few days- and see if I can find a suitable name for the area between Easington and Dawdon.

 

All the very best

Les

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Hello again.

 

Having had a good look on Google Earth the Coast Line goes into cutting just North-East of Easington for about the distance I require, and there are two overbridges (all the better to hide the ends). The sea here is labelled as "Shippersea Bay". There is just north of this point a viaduct where a stream comes down into the sea- is this Hawthorn Dene?

 

That gives me two possible appropriate better names for the layout- "Hawthorn Dene Colliery" or "Shippersea Colliery", though the latter might imply staithes, which I'm not going to build.

 

Fillpoke Lane area is a non-runner, sadly, as the local topography is completely wrong- the Coast Line is on embankment and too open to hide the layout ends.

 

Any ideas as to which is the better name?

 

All the very best

Les

Edited by Les1952

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Hawthorn Dene Colliery...brilliant! Definitely sets the layout on the Durham coast.

The stream and valley under the viaduct is known as Hawthorn Dene although I can't find a map which gives it that name. An old 1872 map only mentions Hawthorn Burn. It also gives the name of the beach and small cove as Hawthorn Hythe which on the modern OS maps had become Hawthorn Hive!

 

That was a very interesting collection of locos you mentioned in one of your posts. They, along with the types of trains you listed, will really help set the scene running on the main line. Hope you'll have space for a couple of 37s. I must have seen so many photos taken on this line but don't ever recall one of a fish train. I can only assume it's because the Durham coast never landed catches on anything like the size of those on the Tyne.

 

I think you mentioned running seven trains in each direction on the main line?...I'm thinking of extending the fiddle yard on my layout, which has similar dimensions to Fillpoke/Hawthorn, and I'll be interested to see how you design your yard to fit them all in.

 

I was also wondering if you had any thoughts about which locos you'll use to work the colliery? I suppose a couple of J94s would be the easiest solution as I doubt if anyone produces a lovely little Andrew Barclay 0-6-0 in N?

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Many thanks for the positive comment- I like Hawthorn Dene Colliery myself, though Hawthorn Burn Colliery also has a good North Eastern Ring to it- there was a Blaydon Burn Colliery and a Seaton Burn Colliery- though they were both Tyneside (one each side of the river). Must look in the Durham book to see if there were others- and to see which if any collieries had Dene in their names. Nice job for Sunday instead of falling asleep in front of the Grand Prix on the telly....

 

The fiddle yard will be the standard ten road yard that the Newark Group have evolved from Trevor Webster's Parnhams layout- each road is divided into long and short sections with the short being about 2 locos long. This allows two trains to be stored in each- the total length of the two being the length of the road- and the trains can be in either order and vary in length. The development from Parnhams is that the exit points are trailing only- the blades are cut short and soldered to leave a gap for trains to run out. I originally got the idea from Stephen Rabone, but Richard Deas used it on Littlewood, and my son Mr Simon has adopted it for Gresby.

 

I do have a brace of 37s, one split headcode and one centre- they and a class 24 are on the roster.... So far for the colliery I have a WD 0-6-0ST with a Geisl ejector, and a Pecket 0-6-0ST, both on Farish J94 chassis, as front line. Hordern Collieries had a Peckett, but it was outside cylindered, and some of the local WD 0-6-0STs got Geisls, though more of these were North of the Tyne. I'll find a Durham one or give it the next blank number in the No.2 area list (I think 73 but may be wrong). Hawthorn would definitely be in No.2 Area rather than No.3 Area for a pit South of Blackhall.

 

All the very best

Les

Edited by Les1952

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Name now settled.

 

Looking in the Durham book I find one dene- Etherley Dene Drift, and two burns, Blaydon Burn and Twizell Burn. I like dene better so Hawthorn Dene Colliery it is. Geographically it would be in No.3 Area but could have a link (offstage) to Hawthorn Bank Top and then onwards to Hawthorn Cokeworks- this would also solve the stone problem as an airial ropeway is proving very difficult to fit into a plan, though I'm still working on it.

 

post-13358-0-10615900-1334402045_thumb.jpg

 

The Colliery Pecket, posed on Furtwangen Ost. This came off eBay- it is a Farish J94 converted to a Peckett- and a good representation of an X2 class- it is meant to be Lord Salisbury from the Somerset Coalfield. However there was a similar loco (called No.1) at Fishburn Colliery- scrapped in 1958. I will either renumber it as No.1 as the Fishburn one transferred or add nameplates. Fortunately No.3 Area didn't have a numbering scheme, either for inherited or for new/acquired locos.

 

post-13358-0-79400700-1334402213_thumb.jpg

 

The WD, posed at the same place. This also came off eBay, though I have OO-gauge Geisls converted by me. I can only find one Geisl-fitted WD in County Durham, No.1 area converted one in 1961, which then did the rounds of Boldon and Whitburn Collieries. I'll either repaint this one black and number it as 9 (a no.1 Area loco on loan) or keep it green and add a name as No.3 Area engine.

 

The Topic name will change as soon as I can get "Edit" to work on the first post.

 

Back to the drawing board, trackplan No.2 awaits.

Edited by Les1952
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Hi Les I will be watching this one with great interest,being a Seaham lad born and bred.As you are aware there are lots of denes and farmsteads around that part of the world.One of my earlier attempts was to do a small station, coliiery exchange, called Burdon after the hamlet of Old Burdon just to the north west of Seaham.

Hows about Kinley (Kinley Hill just north of Hawthorn) or there is Haverly, Sharpley, Hesleden to name a few.Also one of the local landowners Colonel Gregson had a few places named after him Gregson colliery has a ring to it and makes a change to Londonderry or Lambton.

If you need any info on Seaham or surrounding hamlets pm me and I will do my best to assist-Simon

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Greetings Simon, and many thanks for the offer, which I may need to take up at some point.

 

I'm keen to stay on the stretch of line the NER built rather than the former Londonderry Railway, which got a bit far from the coast North of Seaham. Going for the bit between Easington and the quarries gives me a line running closer to the coast, a cutting and maybe enough room to be able to get the slope towards the beach if my good friend Trevor Webster says he can manage it when making the baseboards- the main line will be at datum Zero so the colliery line can have the height advantage. I've already talked through with Trevor the engineering problems of having the line on embankment and they make the NCB line all but inoperable if the main line is to work as well.

 

One thing I've not yet found out is what sort of wagons Hawthorn Quarry's traffic went out in- its sidings faced North and there was enough to keep three or four steam locos (latterly two diesels) busy- but what was the limestone actually carried in?

 

All the very best

Les

Les

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Hi Les just been looking at Industrial locomotives of Durham and it lists 6 steam loco's and latterly2 diesel loco's I will have a word with some mates back home and see what I can come up with.Im in exile as well living down in North Wales.Funnily enough I walked along the top of the old Blast beach towards the old quarry last time I was up home. As an aside the ending of Get Carter was filmed between the old aerial coal system around Murton and the beach? scenes at Easington and Horden. The opening scenes of Alien where filmed on the Blast at Seaham - Simon

Edited by simon hudson

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Ah- interesting to know that Get Carter was in Co.Durham- I must confess I had thought it nearer Blyth but didn't recognise where.

 

I dion't think all the steam at Hawthorn Quarries wrer there at the same time- rather like at Fulwell further North, but it doesn't really matter- the quarries are well offstage.

 

The problem with a ropeway is that if we are looking from the beach direction it really needs to come straight at the viewer, which is unbuildable. If it goes offstage to the right it gets in the way of the pithead- and I'm hoping to get one of those nice brass ones from Wrightscale, the contact has been made and an order placed, just waiting confirmation.

 

I'll see if it can be fittted in going off to the left.....

 

All the very best

Les

 

RMWeb still won't let me edit the first post and change the header......

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Monday- name changed

 

Mr Simon in workshop again, and I'm having a break from sorting Furtwangen Ost stock to take to Cotgrave this weekend.

 

Second attempt at the trackplan-

 

post-13358-0-16865600-1334601785_thumb.jpg

 

Changes from Version 1.

  • I've moved the swing of the main line Southwards (left) to give more room for the slope down to the beach and widen the space for the colliery.
  • The pithead gear is now parallel to the layout front which allows the colliery line Northwards to be straighter and for me to use Setrack for the 9 inch curve taking it offscene.
  • I've made a first attempt at the ropeway, which will need to hit the backscene at both ends. The left hand end of this can be hidden better by curving the backscene more, but the right-hand end is more difficult. Still thinking.
  • The colliery line now falls for a shorter distance. I need a gradient as an excuse to keep the trains shorter.
  • I've marked the Dapol magnets at the mouth of the screens.

I'm not sure about the weighbridge- I think I prefer it on the loop- it belongs there. However that might restrict my ability to add an engine shed and a landsale siding.

I also need to get a plausible way of starting the ropeway- for obvious reasons it can't cross the board join in the middle.

 

Any ideas?

 

Les

(back to stock sorting so I can test it tomorrow)

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Hello Les

 

With regard to post 13 and the type of wagons used for limestone traffic....I've been looking for photos but the best I can come up with is one taken in 1972 at Hylton Quarry on the south bank of the Wear to the west of Sunderland. The train is being worked out of the quarry by a pair of 03s and an 08! The load is described as crushed dolomite. Only the first three wagons are visible and they're all 21t unfitted (coal) hoppers. The first is ex works, re bodied. The other two have original bodies, one with vertical stantions. You'll probably have a few wagon books so you'll be able check the various types. However as Hawthorn Dean Colliery will be early 60s so they might have been older wooden bodied types at that time? The photo will be copyright so unfortunately can't post it here.

 

Your fiddle yard design sounds very interesting. It could be just what I'm looking for. Can't quite visualize how the tracks are sectioned electronically to give the flexibility you describe. Take a few photos when you start track laying and I'll also have another look at Gresby.

 

As well as shunting the colliery, you mentioned enjoying watching the trains run on the main line so I was wondering how you plan to operate the layout...back or front, or both depending on what needs to be run?

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Hello 60091.

 

All I've found so far for limestone traffic is covhops from the quarries near Ferryhill to ICI or British Steel. These appear to have been rakes of about 12 pulled by a WD. The only problem with using 21T hoppers for them is that the wagons used for the coal traffic were largely 21 tonners also, making the trains more boring.

 

The roundy-roundy bit will be operated from the back. I've not yet decided where to put the control panel for this. I'm toying with having the colliery operable from front or back (two DIN plugs for hand-held), providing I can sort out changing points when running from the front- I'm not happy about using motors on these as access to them won't be easy.

 

Points at each end of the fiddleyard will be code 80 Peco, with small wire loops from the stock rails to the point blades to keep them live all the time- that then allows the blades on the exit ends to be cut short and soldered rigid. The sections within the fiddleyard are then isolated both rail shortly beyond each point. This means the two point fans are always live to the running tracks. Within each loop are two sections (Furtwangen Ost has one section per loop on the railway). At the exit end the section is just two locos long, ie long enough to isolate a double-header or a DMU with the power car at position 2. The rest of the loop forms the other section.

 

A train is selected simply by switching on the short section of the fiddle siding. This moves off round the layout. The one behind is advanced by switching on the long. It moves forward until its loco(s) are over the short and stops/is stopped. by switching off the short. When the train going round returns it is run into the loop and is stopped behind its partner.

 

The only problem is that the two locos in each loop of the fiddle yard need to be reasonably well matched for speed- if a Farish diesel is crawling around the front a Union Millls in the same siding will race forwards and stop dead with its train in a heap on top of it. I have that particular T-shirt too many times..........

 

Hope this helps. I'll try to draw a diagram and update the colliery drawing before too long.

 

Time for sleep- it has been a long weekend followed by a short but intensive break.

 

Les

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Unless your mine was linked to another you'll need a second set of pit-head gear:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hartley_Colliery_Disaster

 

Following this disaster all mines had to have more than one way out. This could be a second shaft including pit-head gear, an underground link to a second mine or a drift mine type tunnel dug to the workings (this became common in shallower mines as it could be used for bringing the coal out on conveyer).

 

Happy modelling

 

Steven B.

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Rats! Should have seen this thread earlier, if only to talk you out of using the name "Hawthorn" for obvious reasons :-)

Seriously, as others here, I know the area very well, particularly Easington, and used to spot J27s and Q6s before the diesels took over.

Just a suggestion - the cutting on the main line could incorporate the "White Steps", a pedestrian crossing consisting of white painted steps and I think a timber hand rail let into the embankment sides down to a boarded track crossing.

Good luck with this - can't wait to see more.

Regards,

Brian.

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Hello again.

 

Many thanks Steven for the note about the second pithead- for reasons of space I'll put it on the backscene- (and at £52 or so for the kit and I would imaging £100 to get it built I can't afford two!). I did buy two of the Farish pitheads but they are very crude by comparison. The etched one is so much better, even if it will hit me in the wallet- my right hand is getting worse despite exercise and support so building it myself is no longer an option.

 

Thanks also, Brian, for the suggestion about the White Steps. It sounds just what is going to be needed to give some interest to the cutting at the colliery end. I wonder if they are still there- I'll look on Google Maps to see.

 

I've been talking baseboards with Trevor Webster (why build my own when a trained cabinet maker has voulnteered to do them?...) and the slope to the beach is definitely on- dropping the baseboards to make it won't be an issue. We also looked at how to get the ropeway in, and it will probably run from a loading building at or near the centre join along just in front of the backscene on the left hand board to pass into the backscene as it sweeps round at the left-hand end. If I can work out a way to invert buckets it might be possible to make it work using Brawa parts, but I think it is more likely to consist of towers made from Brawa parts customised using Scale Link pylon etches with buckets stationary- they didn't run all the time. The loading building will need to be connected to the screens by a covered conveyor I think.

 

Hopefully version 3 of the trackplan isn't far from gestatiing.....

 

All the best

Les

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Fiddleyard Schematic

 

Hopefully this diagram will explain how the fiddleyard works. I've only drawn two of the roads- there will be five in each direction (a development from Trevor Webster's "Parnhams"). Nominal capacity is ten trains each way, though one long train a road here and there would reduce this.

 

post-13358-0-78636300-1335552237_thumb.jpg

 

Top Valley & Rise Park is the Newark Group of Bingham MRC's project to replace Farndon Road. This and Hawthorn Dene will have similar fiddle yards for the roundy-roundies, though TV&RP will have a goods yard over one end.

 

The diagram shows how two similar length trains would occupy one road and a long and a short could occupy another road in either order- the "short" section being two locos long. One road in each direction has a (on) - off - on biased DPDT switch to allow continuous running.

 

Trackplan version 3 to follow, I've nearly drawn it.....

 

Les

Edited by Les1952

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Here it is- trackplan version 3.2

 

Third attempt at version 3, incorporating as many of the suggestions I've had so far as I can fit in or can remember...

 

post-13358-0-94231000-1335600488_thumb.jpg

 

The colliery line rises steeply from crossing the road on the left to just before the points at the top of the landsale depot, which will be coal drops (Lyddle End detailed up). A colour light here would control access to the bank from the top. The line then bends round the back of the weighbridge and climbs again once past the shed road. The pithead is partly to obscure the fact that the screen roads are level rather than prototypically sloped- the line rising in front of the locoshed will help give the impression as trains are glimpsed exiting here.

 

Screens are fed with full wagons from behind, and these are pushed forward. I'm planning to fit all the wagons on the colliery circuit with the Dapol magnetic couplers to allow them to be drawn off in ones and twos by the colliery pilot. I'm going to have to ignore the fact that the coal drops don't actually drop coal and switch wagons over while there is nobody looking :scratchhead: .....

 

The ropeway loading house will have to be scratchbuilt to drop into place when the layout is assembled. The screens will also be scratchbuilt using some decent photos I have of Eccles colliery (which I know is in Northumberland...........). Others will be either scratchbuilt, Lyddle End or Farish, or heavily modified ditto.

 

The signals on the main line- home or distant? I'm tempted to have the Southbound one (left) as a home, which would protect the entrance to the exchange sidings just offstage to the left. The Northbound a distant for the junction a mile on where the line into Dawdon Colliery turned off- or am I too far away from this by about a block section?

 

As before, more suggestions would be helpful- it is unlikely I can start building this side of the summer- Gresby needs to go to its new home to clear the space.

 

All the very best

Les

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Hello Les

 

Many thanks for the fiddle yard info and the diagram. I also had a look at the finished panel and video posted recently for Gresby. I had thought of doing something similar except I was trying (don't ask me how) to make it work using only one DPDT switch. My other mistake was to create two sections of equal length. The short/long sections are so much more sensible. My only other problem is not having separate up/down yards so I'll have to permanently designate the lines to be sectioned for either up OR down trains. I'll definitely be doing this with the three longest roads when the fiddle yard is re-built in the next few weeks.

 

Recently just happened to notice a couple of photos taken early-mid 60s of trains working Merrygill Quarry nr Kirby Stephen. Not exactly local to the North East but showing a better variety of wagons...again some 21t hoppers but also several older, wooden bodied types.

 

Do you have a copy of G T Heavysides "Steam in the Coalfields" ([email protected])? Lots of atmospheric photos and plenty of insipration if you're modelling collieries.

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Do you have a copy of G T Heavysides "Steam in the Coalfields" ([email protected])? Lots of atmospheric photos and plenty of insipration if you're modelling collieries.

 

One I don't have- I have quite a large and growing collection of books and videos- and am getting a little worried at the growing number of times I seem to appear in other peoples' pictures- the first was in the OPC Industrial Steam book in a picture at Derwenthaugh taken by E.C.Salthouse- and I hadn't even spotted he was carrying a camera on that day......

 

I think for variety I'm going to use the COVHOPs on the lime train, not least of all because I ordered 12 of them at Peterbrough show. I also have a rake of bogie sulphate wagons, and am looking for an excuse to run them (as empties), but need to think carefully whether they would be Northbound or Southbound. As expected I'm going to have to confine my fish train to the club layout.

 

Some pics to follow if I can find a layout to pose them on...

 

All the very best

Les

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