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00 Gauge - Penhayle Bay : Cornwall in Australia - Members Personal Layouts. - Model Railway Layouts. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 09:59 pm
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Gwiwer
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Penhayle Bay is my first attempt at railway modelling. Despite having been interested in the hobby for many years I have had neither time, finance nor a sufficiently settled lifestyle to be able to set up until now.

The project incorporates ideas I have had for at least 35 years so it has been a long time coming. It is taking a fair time to build also as I am doing it all single-handed (so far at least), I still have to work for a living though currently not full time, and it occupies a moderately large area.

The house as bought in 2004 had a workbench at one side with a long narrow concrete floored area under a laserlight roof. I extended this cover to almost the full side of the house and have a covered area around 15 metres long; one end is just under 2 metres wide, the other opens out to near 3 metres.

In the outdoor environment I have managed to get the area 99% waterproof, it is protected from the worst of the sun and only suffers occasional "wrong kind of leaf" problems during windy weather. Trains can run in all weather conditions. Spiders and flies are a constant nuisance. The local skink population can sometimes be found sneaking along the cuttings, and birds have discovered they like eating the ballast!

I have had to build around several fixed objects. The windows still need to open (in one case with just a single millimetre clearance!), rainwater spouting and drainage pipes have to be got around and on the other side the boundary is the fence with posts to be negotiated and a medium-sized tree to deal with!

From the outset I had decided as a first step into modelling, that I would stick with DC operation. Nothing prevents me from going to DCC at a later date. I had never intended to build a motive power depot or large terminus where a lot of shunting might take place therefore DC suits most of the moves I would normally make.

I respect and admire those who can spend infinite hours scratch building everything to create beautiful working miniatures of their studied location. That is not something I set out to do on this occasion. It may come later. For now I make no apologies for having most of the operation "out of the box", though hopefully with sufficient adaptation to at least set it into context.

The boards are fairly standard 9mm particle board braced with 2x1. They are carried in slotted steel bearers and on steel legs as this prevents any risk of termite infestation from the ground. The work bench had to remain uncluttered so the angled steel permitted a long single span to be supported without a leg intruding onto the bench.

There are two liftouts; a viaduct spans the gap at the back laundry door and is often removed during winter (when rail traffic is less frequent!) and the large board carrying the farm scene is also a removeable one to permit occasional large objects to be taken into or out of the backyard. The yard still functions as such with garden hardware, bricks, tiles and firewood stack under the boards. With everything set up the viewing area is in the centre and access is by the "duck under" technique. It's not ideal but makes the best use of the space I have.

The bulk of construction has been accomplished in the past 2½ yearssince mid 2006. The narrow boards fitted to the house wall were built around a year earlier and spent some time waiting for me to figure out a satisfactory fixing and support method.

This is still very much a work in progress. Most is not even in a fully-decorated state. Close inspection of pictures often reveals stray tools or glue pots in the background. The backscene does not yet exist. But it is a large project which keeps me occupied and has so far drawn some attention through the visibility of the internet.

The argument is that the main line from Plymouth to Penzance runs from St Austell to the coast at Newquay before returning to Truro. As it does so it passes the small seaside town of Penhayle Bay and a country junction at Treheligan from where the St Agnes branch diverges as does a freight line to Ponsangwyn Wharf.

The layout takes its name from its smaller station. This might seem unusual but it was the first name applied and I think it sounds more appealing, certainly capturing something of the seaside holiday of the imagination, than "Treheligan" which is the other and larger station.

It was always my intention to build a representation of somewhere I grew up and love rather than a rivet-perfect scale model of a real location at a set date. The freelance interpretation of Cornwall is therefore mine though you may detect elements of St Erth, Hayle, Redruth, the Perranporth line, Lostwithiel, the Fowey branch, St Germans, Dainton bank and Marley tunnels.

A fictitious extension of the SR route from Padstow the short distance to Newquay permits operation of through trains by that route as well when running suitably themed stock.

The length of the line permits operation of full-length trains. Two 2+8 HST sets appear and I can run double-headed summer Saturday holidays trains of up to 14 coaches.

The time period is typically indeterminate as anyone who knows Cornwall will understand. Some of the signage is of early BR era, some is later. I can run themes with stock of suitable ages from the early 60s to almost present day. There is a small collection of SR steam as well, as much as anything arising from a family connection to Wadebridge shed.

I do not pretend that everything is in correct time period or to exact scale; I know neither is the case. What I do have is a hobby which is teaching me patience and persistence, is recreating a big part of my personal history, and is also putting me in touch with more like-minded people from around the world and firing their imagination and interest.

I'll put up some pics in the next post.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 10:01 pm
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Robert
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Nice introduction. Looking forward to the pictures now.



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The time in Spain is :


Barchester
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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 10:10 pm
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Sol
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Gwiwer ( Rick?) your comment :- The time period is typically indeterminate  is almost the same as my layout - GWR/WR/SR/BR concepts & it follows similar to Chris T signature If it ran in Cornwall it runs on my layout. It it didn't run in Cornwall it can still run on my layout

The main thing is that you enjoy the hobby in its many facets.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 10:23 pm
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Gwiwer
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The boards in almost complete condition before much else had been done. The size of the layout area, the various obstructions I have had to negotiate and the fact that this is still a working backyard are all apparent. Late 2006.



Treheligan station with track work in progress. EFE Rail-replacement bus on the approach road. Hornby wagons, Bachmann locos and track machines. The station building is a standard Hornby product as is the footbridge while the shelter is a Ratio kit. The platforms in this view are the 2007 Peco plastic units which have been replaced as they proved to be incapable of dealing with the extremes of heat outside.



The local dmu departs Treheligan for all stations to Plymouth; Hornby bubble car, Skaledale bridge and skips, another EFE bus, Vollmer embossed card rock walls. Edit - original shot replaced with something in better focus.



"Falcon" emerges from Church Lane bridge on the down road. Heljan loco, Skaledale church, gravestones, lych gate and bridge abutments, Peco girder bridge sides painted several shades of grey and detailed with Floquil "rust", Woodland Scenics greenery



The IC livery HST set (a full 2+8 set of latest-issue trailers with early issue power and dummy cars) runs past Treisaacs Farm with Darras viaduct in the background. Hornby rolling stock, various brands of farm animals and scenery. The right hand lower corner contains a typically Cornish stone circle on rough ground.



In a moment from the early 70s "Warship" D804 Avenger brings an up train through Penhayle Bay station. Mainline loco, Lima stock, home-made platforms from balsa and MDF with Vollmer brick-cad facing. Bachmann "pagoda" custom-painted, Skaledale wooden bus shelter on the down platform, Hornby waiting room custom-painted on the up



Penhayle Bay still incomplete as a 66 rolls through with a freight; the bathers on the beach seem unperturbed. Bachmann 66 and 4-wheel vans, Heljan Cargowagons. Various makes of bus representing my personal tastes (why should there not be a bus rally at Penhayle Bay after all?) and station in its early guise with Ratio platform fencing and over-height Hornby footbridge in custom colours. The white house is a Skaledale item also custom-painted.



2008-9 version of Penhayle Bay with the down HST calling. Coarse scale fences now replaced with finer scale GWR "spear" style, still Ratio. Hornby signalbox custom-painted and elderly Crescent lower quadrant signal correctly placed or the GWR on the right hand side and which also aids visibility on this s-bend.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 10:42 pm
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Sol
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Gwiwer, with blue locos, you have a friend for life with a certain bloke in the UK :mutley

Yes, you would have some fun with spiders & other critters & flying vegetation.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 10:59 pm
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MikeC
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Enjoying the photos. It all looks very good.

Mike

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 11:14 pm
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Gwiwer
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The track is indeed fully operational and most of it has been for two years now. I completed the major tracklaying before starting on anything else, apart from a short ballasted section through the station for the opening day ceremony.

I don't yet have an online track plan to post so I'll describe as simply as I can. There is a double track continuous circuit with a down loop platform at Treheligan and an up side bay for St Agnes trains which also has a loco run-round (or tamper siding). There is a dummy crossover mid way around the circuit which can have the points set manually to simulate single-line workings.

The fiddle yard is a seven-road run through behind the main lines and fed by double-track high-speed junctions at either end. Some roads are designated "through" for continuous running of trains whilst something shunts in the station or runs on or off the Ponsangwyn branch. There are two shorter dmu sidings and three single-loco roads hidden under the church.

Treheligan has a small two-road up yard and a down loop which acts as the feed for the Ponsangwyn branch. This drops steeply to a small 5-road yard including a small 2-road loco shed.

All of this is powered by four second-hand controllers, two Hornby, one Gaugemeaster and one unbranded and thought to be of US origin. That has always been regarded as a temporary fix and it remains my intention to acquire a Gaugemaster 4-track unit or similar. The only issue is the shipping cost as all controllers are heavy. I might have to settle for a couple of HM2000 units. There are perfectly good controller available locally thought they are far from cheap and some look tinny. Looks are not the main consideration but if I am paying a fair chunk of the weekly wage to get something it might help for it to look and feel good as well.

At the end of the day provided I keep everything clean it all works and does so remarkably well for a first attempt and in the outdoor environment.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 10th, 2008 11:16 pm
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owen69
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i like what i see,that is a good setup you have,as for kit
don`t we all start out with ready built ? i certainly did.

:cheers:thumbs:thumbs:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 01:14 am
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Gwiwer
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More photos taking advantage of good sunlight today.

The Bachmann 158 set runs past Treisaacs Farm where the pigs are out enjoying the warm sun and the beekeepers are at work.

Farmhouse is standard "large station house" from the Skaledale range, the greenhouse extension is a Wills kit as is the small shed, both custom painted. The piggery is a standard Skaledale item with Peco pigs and fence. Beekeepers and hives are from Noch.



A passenger waits patiently at Treheligan as the vans come through behind a 66. Bachmann loco and van, weathering by Making Tracks, station sign, barrow and platform seat are all Cooper Craft, the platform is now a Metcalfe printed stone sheet on balsa replacing the earlier Peco plastic version.



A reverse view from the small access area behind St Senara's Church showing the 4-car 158 at Treisaacs, with a patch of rough ground to the left, and a 3-car (122+108) St. Agnes train climbing the branch in the foreground. With those consists it must be a summer Saturday! You can also just see some of the hidden loco sidings beneath the church.



An up "Warship" runs through the junction with the fiddle yard exit and passes a milk working behind an 08 shunter entering the down loop at Treheligan yard. The track gang have some time on their hands between fettling the points and their vehicles are blocking traffic in the lane! Bachmann locos, various vans, Hornby (ex-Lima) milk tankers, Crescent signals, Noch track crew, various brands of road vehicle. Peco PL11 surface point motors in use here have been painted silver / wood color to look like something real and the wiring is disguised in the vegetation

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 01:41 am
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Sol
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Nice pics mate

Now this photo, I have seen somewhere else & am racking my grey cells to try to remember where I saw it. The point motors are what I remembered about it!


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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 01:58 am
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Gwiwer
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It has also appeared on RM Web

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 02:28 am
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Sol
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That is where I saw it & I just looked at the full thread on your layout there so I can see more pics coming for this Forum.

The more I read, it seems that most, if not all, of the layouts on this forum are all one-man band driven/built.

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 02:39 am
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phill
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Love this thread, some lovely pics and what a layout. Also as a bus driver i recognise those bus's you have.

Phill

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 06:41 am
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Christrerise
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Great Rick - showing just how good layouts can look even if they use ready made items, just like I do!  If you have a large layout and you are only expected to live for another 40 years or so there is not enough time to build everything from scratch!

Looking forward to more...

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 07:50 am
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Alan
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Rick

What a great first project you are building, a really good set of photos to get us all going, like the way that you have covered all the hills and grass area's, we have just installed the point motors on our layout, how have you found them since you installed yours.

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 07:56 am
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Daveco
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Fantastic layout and quite an Empire, had to smile when you mentioned the Skinks, I have problems with Gecko's, nothing like having Godzilla running around on the layout.

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 08:06 am
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Gwiwer
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I use the new Peco PL11 surface motors for all hidden pointwork around the fiddle yard including a crafty double-installation in the tunnel mouth to operate the 3-way point - the point is just visible in the "Warship" shot though the loco obscures the motors.

I also use those to control the junctions on the main line at each end of the fiddle yard purely out of personal preference as I can make them look something like realistic point motors with a bit of paint. Again in the "Warship" shot they are handy as the location here makes fitting underside motors very tricky; two boards meet at about the coupling between the loco and first van with one angled slightly up for the main lines and the other angled slightly down carrying the branch and supporting the elevated main lines.

For the rest of the viewing area I have conventional PL10E motors with the extneded pin and mounting plate as I do not wish to cut large holes under the points.

All are (or will be) wired back to Hornby levers which I prefer to Peco for no other reason than that they give a chunkier feel as part of a frame.

I have found the PL10E motors to be exemplary once correctly located and the required hole is bored out to permit the pin to throw fully, also once the slightly tricky task of wiring them in is accomplished.

I have found the PL11 surface motors seem to be a very mixed bag. The first batch have worked fine. Subsequent batches have pulled but not pushed, or vice versa, or not worked at all. Three have fallen to bits as the packaging was removed. Adjusting the tension of the point spring has eased the problem in some cases but not yet all. Easing the tension can also cause loss of contact for the current flow so there is a fine balance to be maintained. I regard this as trial and error to some degree though have not been impressed that brand new motors from a reputable manufacturer simply disintegrate before use.

That said the PL11 is very easy to install compared with the others and does not require any gravity-defying juggling with screws or the soldering iron.

The jury is out on how robust these surface motors are likely to be in the long term but they are also easy to replace if necessary. One that burned out on me (through my own fault) was replaced in seconds rather than minutes of hours.

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 08:09 am
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Matt
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this is a great layout, loads to look at and all the scenery blends in well. i like the church scene:thumbs

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 08:11 am
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Alan
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Thanks Rick

That is what we have found with them as well, one day fine the next a problem, but as you say they can be changed very quickly, we are planning the building of another new layout at the moment and will be using motors under the baseboard this time.

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 Posted: Tue Nov 11th, 2008 03:53 pm
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henryparrot
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Lovely photos Rick a layout to be proud of and you have made great use of ready made products adapting them to fit on your layout.

Scatchbuilding is a great concept but one has to be realistic if you are building a large layout have you actually got enough years left to live scatchbuilding everything.

I tend to take the view i will use many ready made and kits on my layout for time reasons then when i am more nearer to completion and the layout is fully operational i can then perhaps scratchbuild some buildings and swap them with the ready made ones to me that is a more realistic way of perhaps doing some scratchbuilding withought creating yourself an impossible task

cheers Brian

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