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Clogher Valley


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Would love to do the Swilly JB, butI don't have enough space to do it justice, while in 7mm scale, the scratch building would be prodigious. 

Key reasons behind both the SLNCR and CVR projects has been the availability of so much commercial support - Alphagraphix for the former and Branchlines/Worsley/Ragstone the latter. If somebody has already done the research, that is fine by me!

 The idea of the proposed lines to Belmullet have long been a worm in my head [pretty much since I read your book] and with a terminus called Black Sod Bay, it has all the elements of what I like, not least the thought of doing an Achill Bogie. However, space is again a problem, so am currently playing with another favourite, the Timoleague and Courtmacsherry. Alphagraphix to the fore again, with Argadeen, St Mologa, No 90, plus coaches all available. Andy Cundick is busy doing it properly in 4mm scale & Courtmacsherry is actually far too big for 7mm, but a compressed version could look very nice indeed and the trains were not exactly large. However, there will then be the problem of what to do with Arigna...

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  • 4 weeks later...

Railcar No 1:

 

 Had hoped to get a set of etches from Worsley at EXpoNG back in October, but as they aren't currently available, decided to do a full scratch build instead. Have done a fair few railcars in my time - the first being a Taurgem Ford set in EM [etched brass], then a variety of 7mmNG freelance jobbies, a scratch built Waggon & Maschinbau railbus in 7mm scale, plus the railbus and railcar on Arigna Town. I ought to have remembered these things can be very challenging & this one was no different...

 The chassis was simple enough - coupling rod blanks soldered to nickel sheet and then drilled through to make everything line up accurately, with a Branchlines motor/gearbox and Slaters wheels on 21mm axles. I also used MJT hornblocks [from Dart Castings], so the chassis is compensated.

 The cab of the tractor unit is a mess of complex shapes & was made from plastic sheet & strip, though the roof is a resin casting I made when making the Unit [see earlier]. The passenger trailer was likewise complicated, especially around the [inset] doors. Again, it is plastic sheet and strip, with the 29 seats made individually as the castings I'd made for the SLNCR railcar are a different profile. The roof was equally difficult & in the end I've fixed it permanently to the body. This made it easier to file to shape [it is several layers of 80thou sheet, laminated together], but means I cannot correct the mess I made of the glazing. A mark two version is very much on the cards...

 In the hope that the paint job might improve things, I brush painted Tamiya acrylic for the brown bodywork and white [actually ivory] roof. Not exactly happy with the finish here either, though some work with T-Cut has improved things. However, have pressed on and been practicing using a dipping pen [fine nib] and white acrylic ink for the lettering. This was then gone over in fine tipped [dark yellow] felt pen and finally the black shading using a .01mm fibre tip. 

 If you don't get too close, it is ok and still needs weathering, of course. The photos also show the Unit for comparison. The drive/tractor units were interchangeable on the prototypes.

 

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Railcar No 1:

 

 Had hoped to get a set of etches from Worsley at EXpoNG back in October, but as they aren't currently available, decided to do a full scratch build instead. Have done a fair few railcars in my time - the first being a Taurgem Ford set in EM [etched brass], then a variety of 7mmNG freelance jobbies, a scratch built Waggon & Maschinbau railbus in 7mm scale, plus the railbus and railcar on Arigna Town. I ought to have remembered these things can be very challenging & this one was no different...

 The chassis was simple enough - coupling rod blanks soldered to nickel sheet and then drilled through to make everything line up accurately, with a Branchlines motor/gearbox and Slaters wheels on 21mm axles. I also used MJT hornblocks [from Dart Castings], so the chassis is compensated.

 The cab of the tractor unit is a mess of complex shapes & was made from plastic sheet & strip, though the roof is a resin casting I made when making the Unit [see earlier]. The passenger trailer was likewise complicated, especially around the [inset] doors. Again, it is plastic sheet and strip, with the 29 seats made individually as the castings I'd made for the SLNCR railcar are a different profile. The roof was equally difficult & in the end I've fixed it permanently to the body. This made it easier to file to shape [it is several layers of 80thou sheet, laminated together], but means I cannot correct the mess I made of the glazing. A mark two version is very much on the cards...

 In the hope that the paint job might improve things, I brush painted Tamiya acrylic for the brown bodywork and white [actually ivory] roof. Not exactly happy with the finish here either, though some work with T-Cut has improved things. However, have pressed on and been practicing using a dipping pen [fine nib] and white acrylic ink for the lettering. This was then gone over in fine tipped [dark yellow] felt pen and finally the black shading using a .01mm fibre tip. 

 If you don't get too close, it is ok and still needs weathering, of course. The photos also show the Unit for comparison. The drive/tractor units were interchangeable on the prototypes.

 

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Wow!

 

Loverly job on the railcar David, looks a beauty.

Having toyed with the idea of railcars myself, I ended up being put off by the complex curves of the coachwork.  I decision that was reinforced when I saw the lengths Gordon Gravett went to building his French railcars.  But you have achieved it beautifully.

That livery looks really good as well.

So whats next? ? ?

 

All the best,

Dave.T

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 Thanks fr the kind comments chaps, though it is not as good as I would like, because the glazing got badly marked during construction & I didn't notice it until after I had fixed the roof on. As the glazing is sandwiched between inner & outer skins, it is impossible to correct. However, it is ok from a couple of feet or more, so I will live with it for now. Fintonagh is booked to make its debut at Uckfield in October, so will hold off doing another trailer until the rest of the layout [and a decent amount of stock] is ready and all is running well.

 Stockwise, there are four open wagons being built. Ought to be simple, but festooned with rivets and plates. Each body has over 100 separate parts. Two sides and two ends they ain't! A butter van and three more guard/brake vans are needed. There is also a second Ragstone 0-4-2T to build - it will be done as Erne, which was green. Livery is just one of the delights of the Clogher. Locos were either maroon or green, the railcar brown, the Unit grey, coaches brown/maroon, wagons grey, guards van maroon. It must have been quite a paint palette!

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  • 2 weeks later...

As a change from the railcar, have been working on a building to mask the baseboard and back scene joints. Hence this little removable pub, 'The Tram'. Pretty conventional in that is built on a foam board core, with doors and windows made up from plastic micro strip. The rendering is good quality art paper rather than DAS clay & is a much quicker alternative.

 There will be a stone wall in front of the pub, eventually, while an extra tree will hide where the right hand side of the model meets the back scene. Hopefully, the layout lighting will not cast the shadows seen on these photos...

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  • 4 weeks later...

I was under the impression I had included photos of my own Branchlines Clogher Valley coach build somewhere on RMweb, but apparently I haven't! anyway, now I've put it on eby I have taken some photos - I quite enjoyed building this, and its certainly an attractive prototype.

 

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Jon

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I quite enjoyed building this, and its certainly an attractive prototype.

Jon

 

It certainly is Jon, and a nice kit as well.  I've built some myself, but slightly "freelanced".

Cheers, Dave.

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Developments on Baseboard Two

Have been working on the above for the last few weeks, essentially a series of low relief buildings & 'flats' which I'm trying to blend into a painted back scene. A certain amount of visual trickery is required [& more work is still needed], plus the placing of a large tree between the yard and the 'mainline' to hide the fact it is not possible to to have three sides of a chimney on view, for example.

 The buildings are freelance, though influenced by prototypes in various photos of the the Clogher Valley Railway. 

 The Tram Inn will be removable during transport, as it helps hide the joint in the back scene. I see it as a fairly seedy establishment, with who knows what going on behind the permanently drawn curtains. Over the road, by way of balance is the 'Temperance Hotel' with associated tea rooms for those not interested in the demon drink. A rather run down looking double fronted house comes next, followed by Coakham's establishment dealing in books and fine art. This was very much inspired by Bob Barlow's work on Inkerman Street. Finally, we have Fintonagh Metalworkers: on the CVR itself, there was 'Fivemiletown Industries', a kind of local co-operative, so the my model is a kind of homage to this. Essentialy I see it as a loose collective occupying the premises and offering things like wrought ironwork, welding, brazing & the like. The rather OTT wall clock and smaller weather vane act as adverts for their work. Both the latter are from Scalelink etches.

 The buildings are all made from foamboard. Fintonagh Metalworkers is covered in DAS clay & has scribed stonework. The others are deemed to be rendered & this is represented by a layer of good quality watercolour paper. Most of the doors and windows are scratch built in plastic sheet and micro strip, though the Metalworkers uses laser cut examples from York Modelmaking.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Love this layout so much that I am now seriously tempted to make a model of the Clogher Valley myself! If I do get round to it, it will only be a very small as (with an existing 7mm layout in place) I shall not have much room for it. But the prototype is irresistible.

 

When I was a kid, one of my teachers was J.M. "Jim" Lloyd, who often produced drawings for railway books. I distinctly remember him borrowing a Clogher Valley timetable from York Museum - he was the kind of guy who could do such things. I often wonder what he wanted with it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Buildings almost finished

Having completed the low relief structures, the last few weeks have seen attention transferred to moving outwards to ward the front of the layout. The main job was the warehouse - at last painted & with doors, windows & roof to brighten the raw scribed DAS clay. A fair bit of time was spent on the road surface and pavements. The latter have slabs cut from self adhesive address labels, while the former is talc on gloss paint - both techniques in Gordon Gravett's books, and very effective too. However, when I sanded the road surface with fine wet & dry, it resulted in the sort of patterns you see on a drying tarmac road after a rain shower. Given Ireland is well blessed with liquid sunshine, I've tried to enhance the effect by giving it a coat of Humbrol 'satin cote'.

 Other work has involved making a wall to separate the road from the station yard, plus a gate [based on those at Brookeborough on the CVR mainline]. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Developing the scenics

Work over the last few weeks has revolved around moving the scenics outwards from the back scene. I started with the road surface and pavement, then made a stone wall to separate the road from the station yard. A crossing gate, based on the ones at Brookeborough & at last I could get out the static grass machine.

 Further work involved improving the ballast & [especially] the baseboard join, where the crack was of earthquake proportions. 

 A couple of trees have been made, following Gordon Gravett's book. One is hopefully a 'signature item' intended to mask the liberties I've taken with perspective on the back scene. It is currently only at the 'skeleton' stage, until I can get some more scenic matting. The other helps to hide the hole in the sky at the front edge of the baseboard. This is also aided by a large, roadside advertising hoarding - the latter suggesting there is indeed a road running along the front of the layout, but just off scene.

 

 In answer to the question about a track gauge, a fellow club member kindly turned one up for me on a lathe, from a piece of brass bar. A basic roller gauge, I used it for both points and plain track.

 

 Am now going back to rolling stock and have started work on a rake of CVR open wagons, so will report on these later.

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I like the use of the Guinness advert to hide the exit to the fiddle yard. I have thrown a fold up etched version on to a nickel silver trial etch which I was putting together. I will have to grind up a parting off tool so I can turn a roller version.

 

Marc

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  • 3 weeks later...

The last few weeks have focussed on wagon building. Four opens and three more brake vans to add to another I'd built earlier. The opens were a real trial of endurance - hundreds of rivets on each one, plus lots of strapping and other details. The problem with open wagons being you need to model the inner sides too. They are for coal traffic - two full and two empties, to be swapped off scene in the exchange sidings.

 The brake vans use my own resin castings. Two are in crimson lake, two are in the faded red/brown colour that this weathered to over the years. All the wagons are hand lettered, using a dipping pen and acrylic ink.

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Lovely job on the wagons David, I admire your endurance and determination.

Are they on the Branchlines chassis kit?

All the best, Dave.  

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Yup, Branchlines they are indeed Dave. Pretty much the whole kit for the opens, though I leave off the etched headstocks, but also get rid of the truss rods and brake levers for the vans. Being 21mm gauge, I fit Slaters 0 gauge wagon bearings, with a 1mm hole drilled in the bottom, then make my own axles from 2mm brass rod, pin pointing the ends against a heavy duty slitting disc in a Dremel. Crude, but effective!

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Thanks David, I've used them under my CVR "style" vans. 

I've actually inherited some 21mm gauge stock; two Donegal railcars and a van.  Not sure what I'm going to do with them yet!

Cheers, Dave.

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  • 1 month later...

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