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Middleton Top C&HPR


JustinDean
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  • RMweb Gold

I've been thinking a lot about how I want to present my model and one of the important elements for me is to give the place some context. As I mentioned the railway cuts through the bleak Derbyshire hills. I love how the buildings are grouped together and some of my favourite views are these:

 

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  • RMweb Gold

To accommodate this landscape some of the baseboards are going to be quite wide. I really want to capture the sprawling fields leading upto the winding house. Apart from the dominating winding house there are several other interesting buildings. The engine shed was a long and narrow building which lost it's roof twice. Once to a fire in 1906 and then to high winds in 1962. I was sent some CAD files by MIM for the shed and a friend is producing some parts from his 3D printer for me.

 

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  • RMweb Gold

The winding house still stands and is in steam on Bank Holidays. I've started making detailed drawings of this structure from photographs while I wait for lockdown to end - Can't wait to get up there with a tape measure!

 

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  • RMweb Gold

I'm really looking forward to watching this develop.

 

One of my future ideas is to do the top of Sheeps Pasture, which looks quite similar, with the cluster of winding house, boiler house and a loco shed and a couple of sidings.

 

Great stuff!

 

Al.

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  • RMweb Gold

The track layout for Middleton Top remained largely unaltered over the years. The siding on the North side at Redhill quarry was taken out of use quite late on and the incline was closed in 1963 (I believe) with Middleton Top being the end of the line.

 

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  • RMweb Gold

I will admit now that I'm more interested in creating the feel of the location rather than everything being precise (apart from the buildings!) so my first compromise is going to be shortening the loop on the left of the plan. I'm using Peco Code 75 in OO for this layout, along with Seep point motors with built in switches for frog polarity, Gaugemaster uncouplers for the planned Dingham couplers and a basic DCC set up for locos. I work as a music producer and also have a composition sound art piece installed at the real Cromford Wharf so I've got a few ideas when it comes to sound for this layout. More of that later. I didn't want to set this out in Templot so I lay the track loose on some sheets of lining wallpaper and sketched around the track, building locations and overall shape of the baseboard. This layout is going to be entirely curved with a steady rise from front to back to emulate those distant views I posted previously. The whole thing measures 9' and at its widest will be 3'.

 

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  • RMweb Gold
8 minutes ago, Enterprisingwestern said:

 

I can foresee a C&HPR centric exhibition in the offing, start looking for suitable venues in Cromford and Wirksworth, but for god's sake not Bonsall (Bonser)!

 

Mike.

 

I think that would be cracking! EVR in Wirksworth has just had a new station building ;-)

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  • RMweb Gold
19 minutes ago, Alister_G said:

I'm really looking forward to watching this develop.

 

One of my future ideas is to do the top of Sheeps Pasture, which looks quite similar, with the cluster of winding house, boiler house and a loco shed and a couple of sidings.

 

Great stuff!

 

Al.

Get Cromford Wharf finished first pal! :-)

 

Jay

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  • RMweb Gold

Currently I’m working on how the baseboards are going to be formed. This will be a mixture of timber types and thicknesses appropriate to their function. Ends of the boards will be 12mm birch ply with a pair of ‘girders’ made from 6mm MDF and spaced soft wood spacers. The track base and flat areas will also be 6mm MDF with scenic areas having a bass of sculpted Cellotex. I know for years modellers have used cork for sound deadening. I’m still not convinced this is a solution with the absorption qualities being compromised by glue and ballast forming a hard layer over it. I think the  timber hollow box that the layout runs on is probably the main issue, with the top surface acting like a drum head and the sides resonating. Something I’m going to look at during the construction of this. For now here’s the full size layout in drawn out form on my dining room floor.

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  • RMweb Gold
1 hour ago, barrowroad said:

Justin, Good luck with your project. If you want any information just ask. I used to assist Geraint with his Middlepeak layout and have my own P4 layout of Sheep Pasture.

 

Robin

Hi Robin - I’ve admired your Sheep Pasture layout for some time!  Thanks for the offer I’ll be sure to pick your brains at some point.
Jay

 

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  • RMweb Gold

In between building a kitchen for my cottage I’ve been making baseboard progress. Not the most exciting photo but then I do want to document the whole build. Started making timber girders from 6mm MDF and 18mm birch ply. Contoured board ends will be next using two layers of 6mm ply. 
The folks that run Derbyshire Countryside services / Middleton Top emailed me today with detailed, accurately measured plans of the winding/boiler house today which has got me itching to get cracking on some actual buildings. 

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Jay,

 

Looking back to the photo of the track plan laid out on the floor. Is there any reason why you've omitted the siding into the loading dock at Redhill Quarry? I'm not sure how much, if at all, this was used in later years, but the turnout through the gate was certainly still there and there was a rusty old building on the dock which would look great against the backscene.

 

Geraint

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  • RMweb Gold

The siding will be there - I didn’t have any L/H points to hand when I took the photo. I suspect this had fallen out of use by the 60’s and I’ve never seen any photos with stock on it so will end up being overgrown and a bit lost on the layout. I’ve got a few photos showing the building but nothing particularly close up showing any detail. I definitely want to include it along with the other small metal shed just west of it. 

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  • RMweb Gold

Now the ‘girders’ are set I’ve been mocking the board set up over my full size plan cutting card templates for the end/joining boards. Doing it this way makes it far easier for me to visualise the model, hence avoiding the CAD route. Once I’m happy the templates match the profile of the real thing I’ll mark up 6mm ply and cut. I tend to spend breaks from the house renovation staring at each stage to check things over so it’s slow progress! 
 

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  • RMweb Gold

So while I have pieces of plywood weighed down by lots of paint pots everywhere in the dining room I’ve been thinking about the next stage. All the track (Peco Code75) is to hand and I’ve got Gaugemaster/Seep PM1 point motors in the post with just uncouplers to think about. I’m starting from scratch with locos and stock - I have Hornby and DJM J94’s which need a fair bit of fettling to look spot on and a handful of BR mineral wagons. One thing is I want to be able to operate this layout without the hand of God decending so I initially looked at Kadee couplers then the Dinghams. Although it seems the Dinghams need a little fiddling to get working properly they are way less ugly than the Kadees. Dingham recommend using Gaugemasters little electromagnet under the track to draw the iron part of the coupler downwards. So I’m maybe showing my inexperience here, but has anyone ever tried using the electromagnet from a door lock mechanism. They’re just 12V DC and extremely powerful meaning they can most likely operate mounted on the underside of the 6mm ply base. This is what I’m thinking of:

 

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Edited by JustinDean
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