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mullie

Rickett Street (Formerly known as the 'transformer layout')

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Managed to get all the track wired up and running today so the first train ran into the station with a couple of wagons I had laying around. They were recorded  on my phone so apologies for the quality as I've never managed to run trains and film at the same time successfully but they give you an idea of things. The 24 really does growl of its own accord!

 

 

 

Trains ran in from the fiddle yard successfully so work on detailing stock, scenic work etc can all now commence,

 

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The layout was conceived as a recycling project- to reuse as many of those things we buy, use (or not) and then store in boxes sometimes for years and to build what is after all a second layout at minimal cost. The total spend is around £75- £100 though over a long period of time. The list below gives an idea where everything has come from and very little has been bought recently, rather it has been stored in a series of shoe boxes:

 

Two Lima CCTs and flush glazing £15, three Hornby 20 ton stone wagons £15, GWR Brake van- about £5 on Ebay.

 

121 Railcar- Bought at least five years ago on a whim as I liked it, something I don’t usually do.

 

Class 24, 08 shunter – surplus on Pott Row after the layout was backdated. Both over ten years old

 

Thompson full brake in BR blues- surplus to Pott Row. Bought on Ebay some years ago for about £8.

 

Baseboard connectors and dowels- Around £7 spent on pieces for this project though some were spares I had bought anyway some time ago.

 

Factory-Wills Engine Shed surplus to requirements so adapted to become a factory with loading bay.

 

4 X 1 baseboard- been sitting around for some years supporting various other control panels and fiddle yards

 

Other wood – offcuts from purchases for Pott Row though mainly bits recycled from dismantled furniture and packaging. I never throw away potentially reusable wood.

 

Four Peco points- dread to think how old they are but they still work. Some could easily be over 15 years old. SMP track. Bought for Pott Row but unlikely to be used for some years as there are no plans to extend that layout at the moment.

 

Switches- surplus from other projects. None bought specifically for this project and all found in various boxes. . Wire: Just a few pounds spent on various reels shared between both layouts.  Power cab panel and power supply: Housed in a wooden box I made in woodwork aged 13 and set up so it can be plugged into either layout.

 

Tension lock couplings. All taken off rtr stock I have bought in the last few years as I use S&W couplings on Pott Row. Much more of a pain to fit accurately than I thought, and different types lack compatibility. I have standardised on the Bachmann style small coupling. Tension lock uncoupler- knocked together from some scraps of brass.

 

Various wood screws. Around £5 spent though some will be recycled from other places.

PVA, hot glue sticks, no more nails and craft glue. Always have these in stock for general DIY, modelling work and to sustain the children’s artistic interests and course work.

 

Recent purchases

 

Two sheets of Artists mounting board- around £10.

Share of the family printer ink for scalescenes sheets, glue, consumables etc.- £10-15

Scalesecenes station signs- £2.99

Edited by mullie
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A couple of small jobs completed this weekend. The track has been sprayed a basic leather brown colour as a prelude to painting and ballasting:

 

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An uncoupler for tension lock couplings has been knocked up from some scraps of brass.

 

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Some stone wagons had their crude Hornby couplings replaced by Bachmann small couplings, a much more fiddly job than I was expecting as a consistent height is important. These wagons are somewhat crude but in the interests of minimal cost and recycling they were acquired cheaply and will be weathered.

 

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Bachmann brake van also modified. I've had this for 2-3 years so it didn't have NEM couplers on it.

 

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The building in the background will form the backscene to this part of the layout and is scratch built from Will parts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bit more progress this week. Back scene board added to the left hand end of the layout and more trickery with mirrors has ensued.

 

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Another piece of stock found lurking has been converted to small Bachmann couplers, this time a Bachmann Thompson full brake. The challenge of using bigger stock on a micro layout is proving enjoyable and makes shunting interesting as is the use of longer locos such as the class 24.

 

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Work started today on the retaining wall for the fiddle yard end. Here you can see the basic structure that will be covered in Scalescenes brick paper. The light was a bit strange in the dining room hence the lighting is a bit odd though it was a very nice place to sit and work as it has been a lovely day.

 

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There is a slight drop at the left hand end that is deliberate. In such a small space I'm still trying to work out the best way to disguise the fiddle yard entry and have blurred it by continuing the wall beyond the scenic section.

 

 

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Work on the retaining wall at the left hand end is now proceeding and should be finished in the next few days. The bridge parapets to the right need redoing. Despite printing them on a different and more advanced printer they've gone a horrible shade of green so over the next week they will be coming out and replaced by some sheets printed from my trusty Canon Pixma which doesn't give the same definition but somehow that looks better and it takes matt varnish and charcoal sticks/coloured pencils much better. I think the difference may also be connected with the type of paper used.

 

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As you may have noticed the layout finally  has a name! Rickett Street is a real place  in the area of London that first inspired me to build it. As you come along the A4 into London as I do if travelling by coach from Dorset to London you pass over the railways coming under Earls Court and the multi layer lines have fascinated ever since first seeing them from this perspective around 10 years ago. Therefore, I've built a layout that looks nothing like them and in fact have built a Western region terminal station well out of my comfort zone!

 

As I did more research into the area I became interested in the railways of the West and North London lines but the station inspiration came from West Brompton and South Kensington with a bit of Shoreditch thrown in for good measure, all a bit confused really. The layout has now been equipped with station signs confirming its Western region identity but the nature of the lines is that quite a lot of inter regional traffic used the lines meaning quite a wide range of motive power. 

 

The plan remains to set the layout after 1965 when London lines were basically dieselised and build at minimal cost recycling as many things from the scrap box or picked up cheap as possible. At the moment it is a run down terminus but I have left scope for extension and also have ideas about going up! Retaining walls along the back of the layout are now basically complete:

 

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Then they were weathered, mainly using artist charcoal ground up with an attachment on the Dremel and sealed with matt varnish. 

 

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Ballasting next.

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A deceptively important off cut of track. Scalescenes sheets from my printer (Canon Pixma) printed on ordinary printer paper, my preferred option,  tend to lose colour and distort if the traditional PVA, washing up liquid and water mix is used so I purchased some of the new style 'Klear' and have been experimenting.

 

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Klear on its own doesn't seem strong enough and the surface tension caused holes in the ballast, that is the ballasting on the left.

 

Using Klear to replace the water in a traditional PVA, washing up liquid and water mix gives a much firmer bond with no surface tension problems. A final experiment tonight will be to see how it reacts to a scalescenes sheet but trials seem promising.

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Bit more progress today, canopy added from card and Scalescenes parts. The lump at the left hand does not look as bad in real life and suggests the kind of warping seen in photos of such structures in later life.

 

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Martyn, I can't say I like the grime and the gloom but I do admire it.

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Martyn, I can't say I like the grime and the gloom but I do admire it.

John

 

Being born in 64 I first remember travelling by train from Brentwood and Shenfield in the early 70s, mainly to Liverpool Street, Southend on Sea, and on occasion Clacton. By about 1978 I was travelling independently and from 82 to 85 lived in the New Cross area whilst at University. I remember dark and gloomy stations, the entrance to the old Shenfield and Liverpool Street, particularly the entrance to the Met and Circle line station were very dark. The retaining walls going into Liverpool Street were black and you could barely make out the original colour. Most station signage and equipment dated from the 50s and didn't change until the advent of Network South East. With smoking allowed on stations and trains they were far less clean than nowadays.

 

Buildings in central London were yet to be cleaned and renovated and much of the stock on both over and underground was already some years old. Great modelling potential but not a great advert for the UK. I seem to remember major public buildings started to be cleaned around 1980 but I may be wrong.

 

This layout is set around 1970 just before I really got going, these days I tend to look for modelling periods that are less popular hence my other layout is set in the 48-55 period. I used to model the steam/ diesel transition period but the two periods I now follow interest me far more. I'm in new territory here as I've never modelled anything outside the eastern region before but am enjoying the challenge of building a new micro layout whilst spending as little and recycling as much as possible on a layout set in a new region.

Edited by mullie

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I'm in new territory here as I've never modelled anything outside the eastern region before but am enjoying the challenge of building a new micro layout whilst spending as little and recycling as much as possible on a layout set in a new region.

And a damn fine job you're doing of it as well.

I like the canopy, and the platform area, it oozes the dankness of quite a lot of suburban stations did. And you haven't even got any ballast down yet.

Keep up the good work

 

Jinty ;)

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There have been some changes, probably only temporary to my work patterns, that mean I've been able to get quite a lot done this week. I also only ever build small layouts or sections of a layout so things get completed and I maintain interest. I tend to break any project down into component parts that can be completed whenever I can grab some time whether that is weekends, late at night or during school holidays. I might spend as little as 20 minutes on something though major projects have to be tackled when I'm off work.

 

Yesterday I tackled ballasting and to ensure that water didn't interfere with the printer inks of the Scalescenes papers I've used I mixed PVA with Johnson's Klear (new formula) and a splash of washing up liquid and now have set and beautifully smelling ballast. Now needs some final tweaking and weathering but I'm quite pleased with results so far. Woodland Scenics N gauge ballast was used as I had that in stock.

 

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The CCT is the 37 year old Wren version I bought when I was about 13!

Edited by mullie
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Bit more progress with the retaining wall at the left hand end of the layout. At the right hand end the clearances are very tight so it will take a bit of organising.

 

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I've built small layouts for around 16 years and aside from the space considerations and the fact that it means I can get trains up and running fairly quickly.  here is why. The middle board needed some changes to the wiring and being small the board could be placed on my workmate and all could be done sat down with no twisting or discomfort.

 

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 The white card is from a shirt packet and bridges the height between Peco points and SMP track that I'm using. This is why:

 

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Whilst testing clearances it became clear the running lines could benefit from being just a few inches longer. So, over the last couple of days that is what I've done; both extended the running lines and trimmed back the front retaining wall as the class 24 couldn't get through the gap.

 

This how the fiddle yard entrance looks currently, the edge of the retaining wall will be finished over the course of the next week. The plug hanging down is the base board connector to the station platform board.

 

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Another recycled wagon, this time an old Airfix rtr Lowmac. The couplings were adjusted so as to be consistent in height and it has been weathered. Probably had this for over 30 years but as theme of the layout is to recycle, here it is:

 

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Tried to get the wheels out but they wouldn't budge, I have other wagons running on original Airfix wheels with no problems so I suppose they can be left.

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I quite liked this, scene is beginning to come together.

 

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More work on retaining walls and ballasting this week. The white card will be covered with DAS during the course of the week. The intention is to have the basic ground cover (DAS down and painted, ballast blended in) done by the end of next weekend.

 

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I'll post some better lit shots once layout is moved from garage, though that won't be for a few weeks. SWMBO doesn't allow mess in the spare bedroom!

 

Ratio GWR lamps have been ordered and I have Coopercraft benches for the platforms. This is a run down station so won't need many passengers or staff!

Edited by mullie
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Though I haven't posted recently I have been busy with the scenic work, here are some photos. Not turned out too bad.

 

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Platform lights added. Started out as Ratio but they were too fiddly and I was concerned about breaking them. Therefore, I modified them by using handrail wire to replace the plastic loops and changing the mounting so they fit onto the retaining wall. A bit freelance but I'll live with it! A few passengers have been added, not many as this is a station in decline.

 

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Layout moved into daylight today so I can get a first view of the whole layout after basic scenic treatment. These photos show the whole layout with and without fiddle yard cassettes.

 

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Old Airfix lowmac waits on a siding

 

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08 shunts parcels vans

 

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Been a bit busy with my other layout Pott Row recently but there have been some developments around the entrance to the fiddle yard. Hopefully something to show soon.

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Decided to rethink the entrance to the fiddle yard and the position of the starter signals. A Dapol gantry had been removed from Pott Row with two Eckon three aspect signals and so has been put in a new position at the entry to the fiddle yard acting as the starter signal. The original position at the end of the platform meant trains had to be unrealistically short.

 

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A wood panel is in preparation to be decorated as a bridge/tunnel portal to go behind the gantry to further disguise the entrance to the fiddle yard. 

 

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There are no immediate plans to wire up the lights but this could form part of future plans.

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Great thing about this layout is that I can simply switch it on, and engage in some therapeutic shunting for around 10-15 minutes. Nice way to round off the day after work.

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A quiet evenings shunting in West London. Three mineral wagons are being collected and swapped for two OBA wagons, this is about half way through the process.:

 

Starting position

 

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run round the two OBA wagons brought in, yes they are unmodified Hornby, old ones used to see if the type is viable on the layout (they are) so will be rebuilt at some point;

 

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Run round move in progress

 

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Collecting the first OBA and running round.

 

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OBA placed on siding

 

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Second OBA for positioning

 

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Position brake van out of the way

 

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Second OBA placed for run round.

 

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Second OBA placed on siding

 

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Brake van positioned

 

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Mineral wagons coupled up and positioned for departure.

 

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I think this sort of makes sense. The shunt took place over two sessions around50 minutes in total, forgot to photograph first session and anyway too many might fry the brain!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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