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Freelance Industrial Layout Essex Brick

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Hi, started building a small portable freelance industrial layout Called Essex Brick. Its based on a brick works/storage facilities and serviced by rail, road and canal.

All buildings will be 3D printed and are all based on how I remember buildings from my youth travelling into London on the Fenchurch line where all the buildings were dirty and well worn.

Everything will be covered with plaster to represent concrete and cobbles.

Track is flexi track with 3D printed turnouts and turntables.

Underneath is another track with locos pulling canal boats around and through the layout.

Locos and waggons are freelance, I have googled industrial locos and critters (USA small locos) and all are different so anything goes.

I have started on the low relief buildings for the back scene where locos will disappear into to the buildings and onto the the sliding fiddle yard.

The sliding fiddle yard has 32 tracks but is quiet shallow so only trains of 3 units can be stored but empty waggons can be picked up if required.

Indexing the fiddle yard has worked well on the principle of using stepper drivers and motors used in 3D printers. 

The layout has been stored in garage overwinter and fiddle yard indexing is still spot on with an accuracy of 80 steps per mm.

Control is DCC++, JMRI/CMRI, and Arduinos.

Enough waffle som pics attached.















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  • 4 months later...

Got cracking on the base board. Takes a bit of effort to make it look rough 

I found out air dry clay shrinks a lot but in the end I think it came together???

All the electronics are up and running just got to

Sort out all the routes


Make lots of buildings

Make lots of figures

Locos and bodies

Wagons galore


I still have lots and lots to do 











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Barclay, 1600 x 900 the max size I can fit in my campervan (hopefully).

There is scope to add extra boards either side at a later date.

Docks and similar always seemed to be surrounded by brick walls so perhaps a high street with trams !!

Still lots to do to finish this this board first.

I am at present getting the canal boats to run nice and smooth. I am using magnet on magnet and getting a slight juddering and it is just not right.

Tried plenty of magnet combos but still not 100%, but i will probably get it acceptable in the end.


Hayfield "interesting" good or bad? I am looking for feedback as am not sure if I am on the right track as I can't find many layouts of a similar style.


Also I am trying to scratch build everything because it's a challenge. Most structures are 3D printed so no restriction on what I can build just what is in my imagination:rolleyes:



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  • 3 months later...
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I don't know if anyone is interested but I have started putting tutorial videos on YouTube to show how easy it is to make the buildings shown on my layout.

Video 1 has some dodgy audio but I improved my setup and the others seem ok, audio wise.

I use SketchUp Make as it has some great plugins for brickwork and most other textures we use in our modelling.

I am open to request if there is a method you would like to see a demo of.


My YouTube Ch




Edited by EDDY100
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This is in incredible Eddy. The YouTube content is great for a noob to 3D printing like me. I don’t have a machine myself but a friend does so I have access to one.  I’d love to see a demo of how you paint the brickwork etc as you’ve done a cracking job. Cheers! 

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