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  1. Anyone who serves me a full English with baked beans will ensure anarchy occurs immediately.
  2. Unfortunately some Ikea shelves appear more prone to a degree of warping than the table tops. I found this out on my current cameo which uses an Ikea shelf, where after I had screwed & glued a painted plywood board to the top and laid some of the trackwork, I noticed the centre of the board had bowed upwards by approx. 5mm. In an attempt to overcome this, I made four cuts through the shelf's bottom layer at equal distances either side of the high point and clamped it to a table using sash clamps. When the board was removed after a few days the bowing had reduced to 2mm, which I deemed to be acceptable and the cuts were filled with waterproof PVA in an attempt to re-introduce some strength. I have since beefed up the layout facia material to help stability. So far operation of locos and rolling stock does not appear problematic and buildings have been designed to ensure they are horizontal. Hope this may help. Vaughan
  3. The goods yard platform has had the surface loose fitted for clearance testing. It still requires painting and surface treatment. A small goods shed is being 'bashed' from a Wills kit. The platform has 'normal' edging on the goods shed rail side, but other edging is to be a representation of stone block, enabling end or side loading from one or three plank wagons (or something more exotic?). The left end of the platform may be occupied by further sheds or a low relief Nissen hut, presumably installed during or after WW1.
  4. Quick update photo showing the almost complete, but unpainted warehouse canopy. The upper floor of the building on the right of the photo will represent toilet facilities with obscure glazing and a range of pipe work running at an angle on the outside to a vertical soil pipe.
  5. The warehouse building is now structurally complete, just needing a variety of details to be added. The loading platform has been positioned and clearance testing has been completed. Work has started on an Oxford Rail LNER Banana van, correcting the brake lever on one side and fitting screw couplings. The heavy weathering applied to the sides/ends of the van by the previous owner has been toned down, but the repainted roof needs weathering and a last digit added to the running numbers on each side side. The second photo shows the beginning of the three bay over-track canopy which is being cobbled together from Wills parts and items lurking in the scrap box.
  6. Following the recent hiatus, the layout has been restarted in a smaller form with a change of company from LNER to LMS (Ex Midland) lines. The basic track plan has been retained but in a space of 1200mm x 300mm with a detachable fiddle stick. The layout marks a return to basics, DC control (although wired to allow conversion to DCC), manual point operation with crossing / frog polarity manually switched. The baseboard started as an Ikea shelf found skulking in the loft, with top layers of plywood & Foamex extruded foamed plastic. Track and turnouts are Peco code 75 bullhead as previously used. Following a period of testing, scenic development is underway with installation of a road bridge and planning using assembled basic structure shells, both scratch-built and kit bashed Petite Properties and Scale Model Scenery kits. In addition to the structure shells shown in the photos, the rear (private) siding will serve a small works to be assembled using parts from Petite Properties and Walthers kits. The front siding will also feature a small trackside goods shed and an end loading dock. Buffer stops are Midland Railway types from Lanarkshire Models kits. Then the front and left hand end facias have been installed. The first photo shows this plus the laser cut supports (from SMS) for the raised area that will include the trackside goods shed with road loading / unloading area and also end loading provision. The painting of the front and end facias is now complete. Next steps include painting the inside of the switch 'cubby' in a dark colour, completing the build of the loading docks / platform, finalising the plan for the rear low relief industrial structures and then fitting & painting a rear facia. Additionally a number of Rapido RCH 1907 wagons that are appropriate for the area require 3 link couplings and thoughts will turn to suitable weathering for a mid-1930s setting. Unlike other micro layouts I have built in the past 20 years, this one will not have an integral backscene, but a detachable one, possibly in a 'horizontal blind' format that can be rolled up when not in use. If the layout is to be operated out of its usual location a lighting rig will be required, in it's home environment the room's dimmable LED lighting array is sufficient. The older part of the 'works' are towards the left of the layout and has been designed around a couple of Petite Properties kits, although the window & door arrangement will be modified on both. The newer building is designed to represent a recently constructed goods in / goods out facility with three loading bays and utilises a much modified Walther's kit. The loading bays will have an 'over track' style of canopy with support columns on the opposite side of the siding. It is hoped by using a range of Redutex embossed finishes across the layout, the differences between card, wood and plastic construction will be minimised. Once the rear building arrangement has been finalised the rear facia board can be cut and fitted. The rear facia has been added to the layout, but will rarely be seen in the layouts home location. Rather than cut it in one piece, the separate buildings have each had their backs painted black to allow for possible adjustment or repositioning. The large loading bay building will have a back added once additional strengthening and interior detailing has been installed. Limited progress recently due to decorating and gardening duties. However there has been progress on the warehouse building including the fitting of the remaining windows and installation of the first two door sets. These are supposed to represent those flexible concertina doors often found on premises involved in food production / distribution or dairies. A rake of Oxford Rail LNER 6 Plank open wagons was acquired for £5 each. They have been fitted with 3 link couplings and two have had their running numbers amended. They still require interior detailing, weathering and loads or appropriate tarpaulins fitted.
  7. Sometimes I sits & thinks, but sometimes I just sits

    1. Hroth


      Lets hope the vicars wife pops round to cheer you up...


  8. Thankfully the issue will my arm has now diminished, although heavy lifting is still not permitted. A start has been made on laying the base for the front yard and experimenting with suitable surface textures. This base will allow the hard standing to be built up to almost sleeper top height, although only track on the rear siding will actually be inset for part of it's length. It will also enable items such the coal staithes, weighbridge and weighbridge hut to be inset, assisting the 'bedding in' process. Part of the top surface will be stone setts, whilst other areas will be rougher, like a well used ash / gravel mix, similar to some of the images in 'The Benwick Branch' by Peter Paye, particularly those on pages 40 & 63. My first attempt is shown on the photo below which was achieved using AK Interactive Terrain Spread that has been sanded back slightly. It is as yet uncoloured, if used this will need to be coloured carefully to capture the undulations and lowlights / highlights. Progress is likely to remain slow as great pressure is being exerted to finish the kitchen refit before Christmas!
  9. Thank you David, I would certainly be interested in a J17 kit with only limited etched work. Whilst I have built small etched kits in the past, my soldering still leaves something to be desired - although as they say 'practice makes perfect'! Vaughan
  10. A small amount of progress on the drainage canal, with more side walls and the rainwater drainage outflows from the goods yard installed. Unfortunately modelling has now been brought to a standstill by a dislocated shoulder caused due to heavy lifting last weekend, when clearing the kitchen for the refit that is now on-going.
  11. Unlike a Dexta which is a breed of small Fordson tractors eminently suitable for a green diesel layout.
  12. In a change to scheduled programming the layout now seems to be veering more towards a fenland setting, rather than the being based in the Waveney Valley. Particular inspiration at the moment is coming from the Benwick and Stoke Ferry branches. My limited research on fenland development seems to indicate that there were archaeological surveys done on the waterways in the 1930s plus some new works to improve existing drainage. I am also toying with the idea of having a covered goods shed as a layout design feature rather than a trackside one. Whilst the usual wisdom is to achieve structure balance across the layout, photographs of some fenland goods stations do feature a goods shed as a single standout structure in an otherwise flat remote environment - RMWeb members comments to help me would be appreciated!
  13. Some further progress on the sluice area. The one on the right is presumed to be the original, whilst the newer higher capacity concrete one to the left represents something possibly built under 1930's government sponsored drainage improvements. Some parts from Wills and Busch kits have been utilised in the build. Both sluices require weathering. The side walls require capping and as the scenic build continues an ash / rough gravel surface will be applied to the sluice access pathway. Next to be installed are the side walls between the bridges, the drainage bed and 'water'
  14. A little progress has been made on installing bridge structures over 'the drain'. The basic rail bridge structure is almost complete, the access road base is installed and work on the road bridge continues. Both bridges are a mix of Wills parts and scratch-built support structure clad in Redutex engineering brick sheet. They will be weathered at a later date. The 'drain' section between the bridges will have 2/3 height walls, one side including a couple of water outflow pipe openings. Planning of the weir has also been started. To the left of the road bridge will be the goods depot entrance complete with weighbridge & scales building. The yard will then extend to the coal merchants bins & huts and then onto the trackside goods shed / end loading.
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