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Marty
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The inspiration...







Newcastle Emlyn Station with GWR 14XX 0-4-2T No. 1472 and coach simmering at the platform ready for departure Circa 1950 (Post Nationalisation).



The station is the end of the line from Carmarthen, branching off from the West Wales line at Pencader and passing through Llandysul and Henllan following the River Teifi a lot of the way.

As originally planned it would have been an intermediate station on the Carmarthen - Cardigan Railway but the line never went beyond Newcastle Emlyn. (Edit 2015.Although there are plans a-foot to change history and push the layout through to a prosperous deep water port near Cardigan anyway. More as it comes to hand)

The Branch was opened in July 1895 and the station remained open for goods traffic long after the passenger service was withdrawn in 1952.

The original layout plan looked like this and is substantially still the same at this point in time with a few tweaks here and there.







Here's a photo of current state of a bit that's progressed beyond bare boards...








and another of what was once Riverbank siding and is now the replacement Llandyfriog Junction including Signal Box lever frame and panel.







cheers

Marty

Last edited on Tue Mar 1st, 2016 06:02 am by Marty

Marty
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Originally posted: Tue Jan 02, 2007 12:47pm
Thought I'd better make a spot for my layout too, so here it is.

I suppose that it is really the 3rd layout I've ever built but the first in 16 years and the previous two never made it past the track laying stage. One, the HO Christmas present, on a sheet of chipboard when I was about 16 and the second N gauge on a door propped up in the shed that the rats got into during a period of inactivity, sigh.

This time I'm determined to make a go of it.

Newcastle Emlyn is an N gauge GWR branch line layout representing part of the West Wales branch from Pencader to Newcastle Emlyn from about 1934 to nationalisation.

I guess that semi-prototypical would be a fair way of describing the plan. Both Newcastle Emlyn and Henllan stations are laid out as close as I can get to the prototype in the space I have available. The rest of the layout between the stations and the fiddleyard is freelanced but I hope to convey the feel of the branch when it's done.

The "plan" has been developed over 12 months in Microstation CAD (I'm a cartographer by training), space made available after negotiations with T for use of one of the bedrooms for a permanent layout. I've had to leave the loft bed and robe in the room in case my oldest lad ( 18 ) comes back to visit but that's given me a run along two walls of 13' 5" and 9' 0" respectively.

The plan says a total of 69' of single line running will eventually be required. Thus one of the benefits of N gauge and that doesn't count the yards and milk factory siding.

I prepared the room before I started, repainting the walls sky blue, fixed and repainted the skirting boards and removed all the old paint and plaster from the polished floor boards. I should have done the ceiling too but being a federation style Australian house they are 14' high and I reckon by the time I get the layout lights in no-one will see the peeling paint anyway. :lol:

The base is L - Girder open framework in pine, built in four sections so that should a house move be necessary, god forbid, I should be able to dismantle it and relocate. Each section is designed to fit through the door and be small enough to manoeuvre around the corner in the corridor, just... we're talking 10mm either side here.

Somewhere in the back of my mind is the hope that I can take it to an exhibition one day.

It's taken me 12 months to complete the framework, the last section join completed before Christmas. As well as working for a living, T and I run a small shop in a shopping centre and we are both State Emergency Service Volunteers (Civil Defence). Talk about busy!!

The backboard was constructed in a frenzy of activity over the Christmas break and I'm really pleased with the result. I used 3.2mm masonite in the hope that I could bend it in the corners to avoid the right angle scene change which always looked a bit odd to me. It worked a treat. Masonite will snap if bent to far but the tightest backboard curve has a radius of about 420mm and looks great.

I hope to get some digital photos of the area around the branch, tweak them in photoshop, get them professionally printed on a stable base plastic film and then paste them onto the backboard. This too might take 12 months!!!

Finally, I'm ready to start setting up the risers from the L-Grider framework to support the plywood subroadbed for the track. The Henllan Station area will be first as if I can't get that to work the whole thing will need a rethink! Henllan had to be on a curve didn't it!

Marty
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Unless I take my time and have a good think about each bit I'm doing I make mistakes.
A couple of times while cutting slots in the backboard to fit around the baseboard frame I took off too much. Sigh.
A bit of glue with some scrap masonite and then some wood putty soon put it right but I get a bit frustrated with myself for making basic mistakes.
Measure twice, cut once my old man always used to say. Good advice.

I've purchased a Metcalfe Card kit of a factory, boiler house and chimney in N gauge and a plastic Kestral kit of a factory, both of which I plan to use in the Green Grove Milk Factory which I have borrowed from the Aberayon branch. They've both gone into the kits box for later construction.

To progress the next stage of the baseboard I've got to buy/beg/borrow some more G clamps and a sheet of 10mm plywood before I can start on the subroadbed.
T wants me to fix the two leaking taps and the dodgy back door lock on Saturday. Maybe she'll let me off further house maintenance to do some more on the layout this weekend once I've done that. Here's hoping.

Marty
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It took a while to work up the courage to name the layout after an actual GWR station and branch line and all that implies. But it did have that GWR feel about it that won out in the end and I intend to get the station as prototypical as I can.

I've certainly given myself a challenge with the changes in elevation, saw some photos in a railway magazine years ago where the trains were dwarfed by the surrounding hills (not hard in N gauge I hear you say) and always wanted to convey the feeling that the trains are just part of the landscape on this layout. I haven't regretted it yet as I'm having great fun building it and look forward to the scenery construction.

All of the stations, goods yards and the fiddle yard will be on single, flat pieces of plywood. So in reality, not far off your flat baseboard GWR, I've just joined them all together with inclines to give the effect of running from Pencader (the fiddle yard) downhill towards, but some miles from, Cardigan Bay.
The open framework allows me, of course, to build the landscape down to the rivers as well as up to the surrounding hills.

Marty
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In reply to an excellent suggestion from Bob regarding the use of a workbench rather than the layout for detail work.

I had planned on screwing the boards down permanently but there is a lot of merit in being able to take them to a comfortable workbench to work on. Like it, like it.

I'll go back to the plan and see what I can work out, something like a cassette arrangement that slots into the vacant space and can then be locked down with case locks would work.... the track would have to be gapped in a similiar manner as that in a board join but that shouldn't be a biggie.

Keep 'em coming boys.

Marty
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First track was installed on Sunday, the bubbly was popped and T did join in the festivities.


The only thing that is going to make the dioramas a little difficult is going to be the size of each of them. The Station layouts are pretty big, even in N gauge. Getting them off the layout and onto the workbench is probably going to be a two person job.

Oh, and you know those mistakes I was talking about?
I was so keen to get the track down I forgot to gap the plywood roadbed, cork and rail at the base board join. Not a total loss, I think I've worked out how to get it gapped but it is going to mean taking the track up again, cutting a chunk out of the contoured baseboard joins so I can access the spot, cutting the cork with a knife and then using the Dremel to drill through the roadbed enough times until it comes apart. Sigh, and I was doing so well too. Thank goodness it was only 2 sections of flexi-track. The close-up Photo at the bottom shows the spot I'm talking about near the backboard, the little tunnel section through the baseboard joins.


_________________

Marty
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Soldering
Practiced soldering tonight after you gents pointed me in the right direction in the Electrical - DC section. 2 nice clean solid joints that don't move, do conduct and sit tight up against the rail web. I'll practice some more before I start working with the nice new track.

I'm going to have to requisition the bench space under the loft bed in the layout room and rig up some lighting. Soldering under the single room light was pretty difficult and I've also got tools and trains all over the place at the moment and will break something soon. Time for a tidy up. I guess that is part of the whole process!

To console myself for stuffing up the road bed I've ordered 3 more wagons from Hattons. Dapol are doing private owner coal wagons with load in twin packs with different running numbers, I've been wanting a set for a while. Also another Peco GWR vent van to add to the collection.

Marty
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Ah well , when you've got to go shopping, you've got to go shopping. The online method is a bit dangerous actually, it's right there and I can do it NOW, and it saves on shoe leather. Still waiting for the wagons to arrive BTW.

I've got a couple of the GWR siphons that Dapol have put out, nice models and so useful for adding operational interest to the layout.
Pop one in behind the loco of the branch passenger train and there could be a load of milk churns for the milk factory or some rabbits or fresh fruit and veg for market.

Soldering practice continues. I've now progressed from big chunky blobs of solder holding a bend in the wire dropper on the outside of the rail to a small dab of solder holding the end of the dropper wire as it comes up vertically through the hole in the baseboard (still to the outside of the rail)... and they are all nice and strong and conduct. Still practicing at the moment until I can consistently get the small dab rather than the big blob.

The layout room has been tidied and the table moved under the loft bed to serve as workbench. A fluoro will have to be hung under the bed because it's pretty dark.

The track has come up again and the next stage is to have a go at separating the subroadbed over the baseboard joins. Sigh. Maybe this weekend.

Marty
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Electrics
Progress... and holding

The cork and ply subroadbed over the baseboard join has been cut to allow the baseboards to pull apart if I ever need to. A Dremel motor tool with a 3mm drill bit held steady against a block of wood did the trick without too much fuss. Noisy though. It's not neat by any means but as it is at the back of the baseboard and in a tunnel I don't really care.

Track has been laid again, wired up and tested. 3 bits of flexitrack now, whoo hoo, smooth running and power to each section of track.
As previously discussed I've soldered the end of the rails at the baseboard join to a copper sleeper, scribed a gap in the copper to prevent short circuits and then screwed the copper sleeper to the subroadbed. This allowed for minor height adjustments to get the two sections to match up perfectly. Rather pleased with the result as it's the first time I've done it. The loco moves from one section of track to the other without the slightest problem, either electrical or mechanical.

Power is fed to the each section of track via a direct feed from the power pack and a common return wire running around the baseboard on the L-girders to minimise wiring. The direct feed will go via a control panel and rotary switches eventually but for testing are just coming straight from the one power pack. For the common return, the solid copper wire droppers from the rail are soldered to flexible wire which runs under the baseboard to the L-Girder and is then soldered to a piece of copper circuit board screwed to the vertical face of the nearest L-Girder. The heavy common return wire is soldered to the copper circuit board and then fed around the frame to the return output of the powerpack.

The copper circuit boards are strategically placed near track concentrations to allow multiple return feeds to be soldered to it and thus the common return wire.

Plastic A4 binding combs are being used, screwed to the L-Girder and underframe, to keep all the wiring tidy.

I'm itching to get on but we have visitors this week and one of them is using the loft bed in the layout room for sleeping.

Still waiting for the trucks from Hattons, today or tomorrow with a bit of luck.

Marty
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Aaargh, I spoke too soon. The track at the baseboard join has shifted slightly and is causing derailments. The weather has been a little cooler over the last couple of days and I think the rail has shrunk a bit and pulled away from the join enough to cause a misalignment. I'll have to have another look and take more care.

Visitors as maintainance of way crew, now there's an idea. The boys are 12 and 16, probably right up their alley. I'll give it a go.

Photo's as soon as I can wrestle the digital camera from T.

Marty
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Working on the railway.
The permanent way gang has been working overtime this weekend with a fair bit of progress but some disappointing hiccups as well.

The young visitors didn't have much stamina I'm afraid. The 16 year old decided that the collection of spaghetti western DVD's he got for Christmas was a better option than being apprenticed to the GWR and retired to the television room immediately.
The 12 year old contributed to some construction of the subroadbed but the pace was too slow for him and he contented himself with running the engineers loco up and down the 3 sections already laid.

I'm really starting to get into the nuts bolts of track laying and electrics now but I am constantly amazed at how long it all takes to do it properly and at the learning curve too, it looks easy enough in the books but when you get down to actually doing the work it takes a couple of goes to get it right sometimes.

I have, of course, not given myself an easy task with the gauge, size of layout and L-Girder frame I've chosen to use, so those of you who are starting off for the first time with a simple layout and flat baseboard need not worry, this is of my own making and there is plenty of help in this forum.

The plywood subroadbed and cork roadbed has been extended another 4 metres or so and each section of track, about 5 and a set of points but more anon, is wired up with power feeders dropping through the subroadbed. The return wires have been connected up to the common return but I'm still working on the positive feeds, the wiring being a little more complicated as they have to take into account where the not yet existant control panels are going to be.

The first set of points have been positioned and the Peco point motor power feeds soldered on and tested on the workbench and then attached under the subroadbed but not yet wired up.

Before the next bit of rambling I need to let you know that on the last layout I used a holesaw to make bl*** big holes under the points to allow the point motors to be mounted directly to the sleepers. It looked awful. I know that you can cover the hole between the point and motors with paper or light card to help cover them up but I wanted to try the remote mounting block from PECO which is attached under the baseboard with an extension bar that is used through a much smaller hole to operate the points.

To be on the safe side, I'm learning, I made up a small section of baseboard frame and subroadbed on the workbench and mounted an old set of points and motor to it to check for fit. I'm glad I did.
a) The 35mm wide subroadbed width I'm using is too narrow to use all 3 screws in the PECO mounting block underneath the subroadbed and I had to be "creative" to get a firm mounting. Now all areas of subroadbed that will have points will be a minimum of 50mm wide.
b) The small hole through the subroadbed which the throw bar from the PECO point motor passes through into the sleeper connected to the moveable point rails has to be precisely positioned or it will restrict the "throw" and not change the points properly. Moral, lay the points first and then join the flexitrack to the points. I'm sure I'd read that somewhere, now I know why

So, I got the new point in, connected to the point motor and joined it up to the flexitrack. Screwed it all down, soldered on the power feeds to the toe of the points and wired up the common return wire. Then, just for the fun of it I ran a couple of coaches up and down my new bit of track and tested that the points worked by manually changing them.

About this time I noticed that the teeny, tiny little bit of spring steel wire that gives the moving rails their "flick" and holds them to the outside rails had stopped doing it's job, in fact it had popped out of it's little mounting holes and was sitting cheerfully on top of the sleepers.

I reached over with a pair of tweezers to pick it up, got a good grip and then knocked my transformer/controller off the baseboard with my tummy. Needless to say that the teeny, tiny bit of black spring steel is now somewhere on the dark wood floor or between the cracks in the floorboards and to top it all off the transformer wouldn't work.

About that time I went back to bed.

Marty
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Here is a photo of that troublesome track at the baseboard join.



and here is the second one at Riverbank Siding that I've over engineered ( and not finished nor cleaned up yet.)

Marty
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This photo of Riverbank Siding under construction shows the gap where the points were. Sigh.



I'd be interested in hearing if anyone has found a way of using "springless" points. I have about 10 from the old layout that I daren't use as the springs are either rusty or rusted out completely but the remainder of the points are perfectly good, apart from needing a clean.

Marty
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Welcome comments from Perry…
Substantial bit of woodwork there, Marty. Most impressive.

I wonder if it might be worth contacting Peco to ask their advice regarding re-springing points. Come to think of it though, they probably sell more new points if the old ones can't be repaired.

I just had a second look at your trackwork photos The first one looks as though it may be under tension, preventing it from aligning correctly. If it is, a solution might be to cut out a section of track, say about a foot either side of the baseboard join to where there is a nice secure straight piece and then fit a completely new section in to replace the problem one. Initial alignment might be easier to arrange and you could make sure the track is well secured both sides of the baseboard join before cutting the new section apart.

I dare say you have already considered this, but it's just an idea.

Perry

Marty
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Thanks Perry,
Yeah, quite a chunk of wood work, I don't think T really knew what she was getting into when she unleashed me on the bedroom As you know it's taken me a while to get this far but.... I'm having lots of fun.

I'll have a look at the tension, it's easy to fix, just unscrew and reposition. I think I can do it without cutting in a new section of track but if I can't it does seem the best method to resolve the problem.

Marty
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Newcastle Emlyn Photos
4 photos - working around the layout room from right to left showing the state of play as of January 07. There is a fair bit of overlap between each photo.
The photos are taken from the top of the loft bed that shares the room with the layout


Photo 1
Riverbank Siding is under construction in the front of the baseboard, the main area behind the siding will have the Newcastle Emlyn Station, Yard and Engine Shed.


Photo 2
The Corner Baseboard, No 2, showing the curve from Riverbank Siding into the hidden loop running around the back of the board. There will eventually be 3 single track lines in the corner, two in tunnels under a hill that forms a view break between the Newcastle Emlyn Station on the right and Henllan Station on the left.

I'm really chuffed at how the masonite backboard curved so nicely, it was easy too. Just pushed into place and screwed.


Photo 3
Baseboard 3 shows the return loop at the back. Middle right will be Henllan Station, front right the Green Grove Milk Factory and left is the biggest hill on the layout forming another veiw break between Henllan and the Pencader fiddle yard.


Photo 4
The Pencader and all points East fiddle yard and the door to the layout room.

Marty
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IT's BACK
I've got my controller/transformer back from the local manufacturer, all fixed and for nowt!! It's good to know that there is still quality service out there.
I've replaced the broken point and picked up the next 2 that I need while in the hobby shop at lunchtime and it's a long weekend (Australia Day Holiday) down under this weekend too. Yippee.
Not that I can hide away ALL weekend in the layout room, still got to balance life around the railway but with a bit of luck will have progressed a bit further by Monday.

Marty
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The PLAN
Sorry for the delay, took a while to knock it together.

Happy to have comments/suggestions etc but as you know I'm a fair way down the track (pun intended) already and major rebuilds would need a really good reason.

Marty
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Thanks for the comments guys, I’ve included them because it’s nice to get the recognition for the work done and because further discussions refer to these replies.

It's good to know that you got the controller back fixed and free of cost Marty. A good service is not the easiest thing to come by these days.
Great looking track plan, very professional.
I have a thing about fiddle yards Marty and am wondering how you intend to operate yours. They are usually so important in the smooth operation of a layout, especially in the smaller spaces. You have plenty of running room of course so perhaps it's not quite so important in your case.
Bob

A very impressive track plan, Marty. There should be plenty of operating interest and huge scope for scenic work.
I'm looking forward to continuing to watch it take shape.
Best wishes,
Perry

Like the track plan Marty, as well as the excellent graphics. What did you use?
As far as changes are concerned, I have just one piece of advice -- DON'T.
Plenty of potential for operating and scenic work and a reason for everything. Reckon you've cracked it mate!!
Jeff

Marty
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Sorry lads, not ignoring you, just a bit weary at the moment.
We had 3 days of 40 deg celcius temperatures over the weekend and a thunderstorm on the last day. The Thunderstorm created some wind shear over the local neighbourhood which has kept me busy with the local SES unit repairing the damage. Just haven't had the energy to write.

Bob, you've got me with the fiddle yard. The only general thoughts I had was that it could be set up with a separate controller and an operator can work within the yard marshalling the trains as they come in. I've planned a run around track as you can see.
The Newcastle Emlyn Branch doesn't see a lot of traffic. 5 or 6 return trips a day with a tank engine and auto coach or B-set of coaches, two goods turns, one about 10am and the other about 4pm and then the odd special cattle train or market day/football special, depending on the day.
I haven't thought a lot about it and would be happy to have anyone’s input as I put the timetable together. Have you got a spot on the Barchester site about how you run your fiddle yard Bob?

Perry, thanks, slowly but steadily we're moving along. Despite the heat I managed to spend a fair amount of time in the layout room over the weekend. I've replaced the broken point, completed the Riverbank Sidings including making up a test control panel with point motor buttons and isolator switches, completed the Quarry siding and started to lay the return loop around the back of baseboard 1. Photos in the next day or so.
I was well pleased with the progress and must have about 9 or 10 metres of running line now. My loco's have never had it so good.

The 1 : 45 bank into the return loop has a bit of a kink in it, not easily noticeable until the little Dapol 14xx refused to climb it with 8 wagons attached. Closer inspection shows that I have miscalculated with one of my risers and I'm going to have to break the glue bond (no nails or screws used) and jack it up a little bit to get a smooth slope. I still don't think that the Dapol tank is going to be much good for more than 10 wagons. Some work needs to be done on adding a bit of weight to the plastic shell of the loco and making sure all of the wheels on my wagons run freely. I can assure you, many of them do not.

Jeff, I exported the layout plan from the CAD package (Microstation) as a JPEG and then added the buildings and text in Adobe Photoshop freehand before resaving the JPEG. It's a bit fiddly but it works and if I had spent a lot more time I could have really gone to town with trees, fences, walls, etc. But time is of the essence and the posted plan was probably clearer without the clutter and said time is better utilised building the layout.

So, progress is being made. I've a couple more power feeds to add to the newly laid track, the power is being carried by the rail joiners only at the moment, and then it's into the detail planning and construction of the Henllan Station and yard. Looking forward to that!

Marty
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Marty wrote:
.....Closer inspection shows that I have miscalculated with one of my risers and I'm going to have to break the glue bond (no nails or screws used) and jack it up a little bit to get a smooth slope.

Could you perhaps add a small sub-riser to the one already in place to save breaking it off?

Perry

That looks like a really interesting plan, Marty. And I like your benchwork - build it substantial, that way it can't be removed easily
MikeC

Marty
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Thanks Mike, I was up on top of the benchwork the other day to do a particularly tricky bit of soldering, didn't budge an inch I'm happy to say.... and yes, it does lend it an air of permanency that even T has recognised.

Perry,
The riser in question, see photo below, is more a spacer of 9mm ply tucked between the roadbed and the baseboard and glued. No choice I'm afraid but to pry it apart, gently, if at all possible, and add something to it to get the grade even.



The photo also shows the track and points in place for Riverbank Siding and the Quarry with the local goods behind a 45xx Prairie Tank waiting in the loop while the 14xx and it's autocoach head towards Henllan. There are a couple of lime wagons in the quarry in the distance.

The test control panel on the right is temporary and allows me to do some real shunting
PS Sorry about the size of the photo, I think I got the camera settings wrong.

...and I've found the section on timetable operations on the Barchester Site Bob. I'll have a read of that and mull it over while I think of the operating plan for Newcastle Emlyn.
As I said before, I don't envisage having anywhere near the number of movements per day as Barchester but then, I've got a lot further for each movement to go to

Bob replied…
You're right there Marty. For all Barchester's overall length of 24' there isn't a great deal of actual visible running length. It's in the nature of that type of layout. Hence the extremely busy schedule. I make up for lack of running length with multiple train movements.

Marty
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Marty,

I've just been reading about your problem with the curved point. One thing you might like to check which isn't always immediately obvious is that the point is actually flat from side to side. I once had one that had a high spot in the middle - near the frog - and it caused all sorts of trouble until I realised what was doing it. A straight edge across the frog from stock rail to stock rail should show up any discrepancy.

Good luck.

Perry

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No construction progress this weekend I'm afraid, the little time I could spare for the layout saw me trying to work out why the Dapol 14xx were derailing on the new large radius curve point that I have put in at the Quarry siding.
I've tried the other Farish and Dapol loco's and they all negotiate the points without any trouble.
I'm sure it's a combination of the long rigid wheelbase of the tank loco and the way that the point is constructed. I've bent the contact rails (the moving ones) a little bit and have reduced the amount of shorting and derailing a little but at anything more than a crawl, either forwards or backwards 50% of the time they will derail.
When running towards the toe of the point they come off just where the contact rails join the stock rails, there is an almost imperceptible bump that lifts the flange above the rail and off she comes. But only some of the time, it's weird.
When running towards the left hand rail there is a little bump over the leading edge of the frog and off she comes, once again only 50% of the time.
This is all light engine.
When hauling a load, the percentage of derailments drops to about 20% of the time, I guess that the string of wagons help guide the loco through the points.
When I get the chance I'll have to put the magnifiers on and sit up close and watch closely to see if I can work out what is going on.
It's a bit of a disappointment actually as I don't want to get on with the layout until I get this resolved. There's no fun in it if they keep coming off.

While I was testing I tried double heading the two 14xx on a goods of about 9 trucks and brake van and they managed to climb from riverbank sidings up the 1:45 hidden loop without too many problems. I hadn't planned for a banker to be used but it adds some more interesting operations to the layout. The banker would only be needed on the climb up to Pencader from Newcastle Emlyn so I guess that fits in with the prototype.

Mind you the brake van derailed on those blasted points

Marty
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Well some progress was made this last weekend and while not readily visible, it was, to me, significant.

The riser/spacer in the picture above came apart neatly and sweetly with a bit of leverage from the biggest screwdriver I own. Half an hour of running trains up and down the grade that the riser supports allowed me to fine tune the slope so that it is uniform along it's entire length.
With the grade a nominal 1:45 the weakest Dapol 14xx that I have can manage it's B-set of 2 coaches without too many problems, but any more than about 5 vans with dirty wheels brings it to a wheel spinning halt.
The Dapol 45xx manages at least 9 vans/tanks/wagons and the Farish locos all seem to be able to handle it without getting their hair mussed.

The PECO point from hell has just about been tamed thankfully because its problems were a huge disappointment. The point served the quarry siding from the branch and having loco's derail every time they went past just wasn't what I had in mind.

I had to get the 4 x magnifiers and a bright light on to help me see what was going on and run the 14xx tanks up and down at various speeds, forwards and backwards, cab first and tender first until I worked it out.

Light engine, tender first at any speed above a crawl the trailing wheels under the tender dropped off the inside rail and onto the sleepers between the rails, then, as the loco continued on towards the toe of the points, the gap between the inside stock rail and the outside point rail closed in again, squeezing the wheel set until it popped up like a watermelon pip between your fingers. The pop being big enough to throw the wheels off the outside rail and into the dirt.

To me, it looks like the points were out of gauge. I don't have a n scale track gauge but I'm going to get one. I don't think it was the loco trailing wheels because it happened to both 14xx's and the 45xx that I have.

So, a couple of quick cuts with the craft knife separated the inside rail chair from the sleeper and about an hour was spent adjusting the inside stock rail until all my locos negotiated it without derailing.

That required a fair bit of running up and down with and without wagons/coaches I'm going to mount the point motor to it and see how it goes in general running over the next couple of weeks.

The last hour or so of Sunday evening had the permanent way crew doing overtime getting another length of track down on the return loop bank behind Riverside siding. This part of the line now extends to the baseboard join of boards 1 & 2. There it will stop until I get the Henllan station built as it is better to build the bank up to the flat of the station rather than try and get the station height to match the top of the bank.

A bit of wiring underneath to extend the common return wire and connect up the new bit of track, 10 mins or so of some "testing" again and it was time for bed.


Not the bit I worked on last night but shows the general idea and how I'm wiring up my points too.

Marty
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Hi Marty,

Sounds like sorting that troublesome point out was a bit of a task! Still, you seem to have found a few 'excuses' for running some trains anyway.

The wiring certainly looks neat. Do you colour-code or number tag your wiring to make future modifications or fault-finding easier? (Not that there will be any faults, of course.

Perry
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Oh there has been faults mate, don't worry about that Simple ones, thankfully the wiring hasn't progressed much further than simple at the moment. The latest one was a ripper, I forgot to gap the copper PCB that I had soldered the rails to at the board join... took me a couple of minutes to work out why all of a sudden I had a permanent short.
A couple of minutes work with the dremel tool and an engraving bit and we were away again.

The wires are colour coded.
Blue = common return and power return from the rails
Red = power to the rails from power pack and control panels
White = point motor common power to push buttons
yellow (with various stripes) = point motor power from push button
Green (with various stripes) = point motor return power to common return.
I haven't numbered or "mapped" the wiring yet although I do plan to. My eldest son is an apprentice sparky and I'm hoping he'll lend a hand. He's also useful for providing scrap wiring that is no longer needed at the workshop. I've got enough red to last a lifetime.

The other colours are from various sources, most of it stripped out of my first car after I rolled it and wrote it off on a country road outback 20 years ago. I scrapped it myself on my mum's front lawn and carefully rolled all the wiring harness up and put it away in a box for the railway layout that I knew I was going to have one day. Other bits are from house wiring from the renovations T and I did a couple of years back and some of it is from the renovations that my company did to it's offices earlier this year. GWR would be proud of me

Trouble with finding excuses with running trains is that they seem to be very easy to find and that eats into the construction time
cheers
Marty

Last edited on Tue Sep 1st, 2009 05:00 am by Marty

Marty
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Little to report at the moment, life is getting in the way of modelling again. I've been away on business and the State Emergency Service is back in full swing.

Planning for the start of the Henllan station goes on in my mind and I'm running milk tank trains up and down the existing line that I have to prevent withdrawl symptoms. cheers.
Marty

Even thinking about what you're going to build can help to keep the interest level high though. I find that if I take enough time to think about things before I even commit it to paper, I can come up with better ideas than the original one and also possibly become aware of snags that weren't previously foreseen (like my turntable not fitting, for instance!).

You'll get there in the end, Marty.
Best wishes,
Perry

It always comes down to priorities Marty and some things just have to go on the back burner temporarily. As Perry points out though this can have it's advantages in future saved time, costs and frustration, so it's not all on the down side.
Bob

Thanks for the encouragement guys, have no doubt that I will soldier on... just at a walk rather than the post Christmas gallop.
Marty

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Phew, all of the above has been copied across from the Barchester MK 1 forum in a flurry of activity today.
To speed things up I've dropped in some of the relevant posts from the other members as replies from me, but hopefully it still makes sense.

That's now all of my Newcastle Emlyn Layout Thread up to date from the old site.

Getting late, I'm still at the office and T will be wondering where I am.

A progress report on the layout in the next couple of days...

Marty
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Those darned Quarry Siding points, again... aarrgghhh!!!

I fiddled with it, reduced the gauge where I thought there was a problem, checked for uneven rails, altered the curve of the rails and tested, tested, tested. Towards the end even some of the rolling stock were derailing! Not just the Dapol 0-4-2 tanks. I was going backwards.

So... in desperation and convinced I was throwing good money after bad, I ripped up the old, twisted, out of gauge, unco-operative and basically naffed set of points. My friendly hobby shop owner was delighted, naturally, to see me once again and cheerfully handed over a NEW large radius, curved, left-hand set of points in exchange for some more of my hard earned readies.

I took the new points home and left them on the workbench for days, the brand new box mocking me every time I passed the layout room. I was hesitating, not wanting to be disappointed once again and thus forced to go back to the drawing board and redesign the whole layout without large radius, curved points. I'd planned to use a fair few of them too.

Eventually and mainly because I now had a gap in my running line and driving trains wasn't as much fun as it was before, I gathered up the courage and gingerly, carefully and with much fussing and faffing about eased them into place at the Quarry siding...

... and to my great relief they worked a treat.

The Dapol tanks do still get "trapped" once in every 30 or so trips but free themselves almost immediately and carry on their way. With or without wagons and either backwards or forwards, the right way around or bunker first.

I still have to mount the Peco point motor and it's throwbar which is going to take a bunch more of fussing and faffing but... and here's hoping, I think I've got it licked.

Marty
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Posted: Thu May 24, 2007 1:33 pm Post subject:

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20 years on and time for an overhaul

Somewhere in the old forum is a comment that I had received a cheerful email from Bob Russell from BR Lines in the UK confirming that overhauling old Farish locomotives was what they did and they were happy to have a look at mine.

That was in February this year… sigh, It fairly rockets past this time thing, doesn’t it?

Anyway, seeing there isn’t a lot of modelling getting done at the moment, what with work and life getting in the way, to satisfy the railway withdrawal symptoms there are little layout related purchases here and there, from time to time. Which, of course, require an occasional test run on the line that is operational.

The little Dapol 0-4-2 tanks get first go, because they are the most unreliable of my locomotives, one is allocated to the permanent way crew building the line for testing and it’s, well… ready to go. However, they are little and light and only manage about 4 to 8 wagons up the 1:45 bank and it’s not very long before the urge to run longer trains becomes undeniable.

So out comes an 0-6-0 and some more wagons, and then the 2-6-2’s – and a few more wagons… and then, when I should really be doing something else, the fact that my poor old Hall class tender engine is knackered and can’t be used miffs me a bit.

So, to cut a ramble short, the Hall



and a 94xx 0-6-0 in similar condition



have been dispatched, via airmail, to Bob for overhaul.

Marty
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Peco PL-26 switches - another challenge
Has anyone had experience with Peco's ON-ON passing contact switches?



They are designed to give a momentary pulse of electricity to the Peco point motor.

I've wired one into the Quarry Siding points, threw the lever and nothing happened. I did a bunch of testing with my multimeter and all my wiring checks out, I can short past the switch with a bit of wire and the point motor works.

I wired in a second switch, a lot more carefully this time because I suspected that I might have left the soldering iron on the metal tag too long and maybe melted some of the plastic mounting inside the switch thus causing the mechanism to fail. However, after soldering the wires to terminal lugs and then sliding the lugs over the switch machine tabs and testing, the second switch didn't work either.

I don't understand, the only thing I can think of is that the switches are faulty but they are brand new from the friendly model shop yesterday.

The mechanism, as I understand it, is just a copper plate making momentary contact between the input power, about 14V DC, and the output lead to the point motor.

The wiring is exactly the same as I have done with my Push To Make (PTM) buttons on the Riverbank sidings control panel. The Peco switch is just a fancy PTM, looking like signal box levers.

Any thoughts, comments appreciated lads. I can do photos if that would help.

Marty
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Posted: Sat May 26, 2007 10:05 pm Post subject:

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Hi Marty,

Are you able to test the switch with your multimeter when it's not connected to any wiring? If so, does that show any switching contact being made across the terminals? A simple continuity check on the ohms setting is all you would need to try.

Perry

Posted: Sat May 26, 2007 10:23 pm Post subject:

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Thanks Perry, I tested the switch as per your suggestion and it was passing current.

Therefore... it had to be my dodgy soldering... and sure enough it was. I hadn't bridged completely across the bit of circuit board I'm using to distibute the power feed to the switches.

Problem solved, well done many thanks.
Marty

Posted: Sat May 26, 2007 10:26 pm Post subject:

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The getting it wrongs are just as helpful as the getting it rights to members who are learning, so that's a good one Marty.

Bob

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Posted: Mon May 28, 2007 9:26 am Post subject:

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It's just the hobbies way of improving our soldering skills

All six switches wired up and operational. 3 for changing points and 3 for isolated track sections.

The Quarry siding point is now powered and Henllan Station is next on the list. Yippee.

The CAD plan was fired up last night for the first time in a while, I need to work out how big the sheet of ply is going to have to be for the station baseboard. Making progress.

Marty
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I'm really quite envious of the speed of your progress, Marty. You really must be putting in some hours working on it. My layout is progressing at the speed of a snail. Still, I'm in no hurry. I may as well get it right as I go rather than rush it and make mistakes - or should that be more mistakes! I've had a few little setbacks but it's starting to come together now.

Can you show us a few photo's of your progress to date, perhaps?

All the best,

Perry

Posted: Mon May 28, 2007 9:25 pm Post subject:

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Nothing of much significance has happened for months Perry but last weekend I was able to set aside enough time to tidy up the Quarry Siding points and wire up the Peco switches. So maybe that's progress but nothing much more to see than the Riverbank siding photo posted earlier.

I'll try and post a photo of the completed lever frame shortly.

I've been envious of your scratch building and baseboard progress but then you were being dictated to by circumstances beyond your control and there was no work to get in the way.

So, with some soldering lessons learnt from yesterday, the future beckons.

I'm pottering around with the CAD package at the moment, the proposed baseboard for the Henllan station is a weird shape, no rectangles here. Transferring the design from the drawing to the sheet of ply is going to take a bit of effort. Overall dimensions are 1105mm x 900mm but it's sort of banana shaped to fit in the curve of the station. The CAD package can give distance and bearing so there is going to have to be a whole bunch of distance and angle measurements from a fixed point drawn on the baseboard, then join the dots.

Then, measure twice, ummm, three times and cut once

Marty
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Posted: Tue May 29, 2007 9:53 pm Post subject:

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Riverbank and Quarry siding Lever Frame

Here’s the new lever frame wired up and in place.
The Black switches control points, yellow lever – Quarry siding, red levers – one for each end of the Riverbank Siding loop, Green switches control isolation sections in the Quarry, main line and loop respectively.
The Dapol 14xx 0-4-2 tank seen here is the one assigned to the engineers track laying crew. I’m actually starting to warm to it, the more work it gets the better it runs and the quieter it gets. Apart from the occasional “catch” in the Quarry points it never stalls either.
It still couldn’t pull the skin of a bowl of cold custard but they weren’t designed for more than light duties anyway.



A C shaped section of wood acts as a mounting block and provided a bit more room for the wiring and the connection points to be packed all neat and tidy under the frame. White and yellow for point wiring. Red and Orange for isolation sections. The connectors unplug so that the lever frame and wiring can be taken back to the workbench for modifications when (not if) they are required. 2 wood screws secure the mounting block to the shelf it sits on.



The location of the lever frame is temporary at the moment, it’s actually sitting in the River Tiefi. It might remain there, with the river modelled around it or it may be mounted on a control panel on the front of the layout somehow.
For, um... testing purposes... it’s fine where it is.

Marty
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Posted: Tue May 29, 2007 10:04 pm Post subject:

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Henllan Station site

Well I guess it’s certainly a greenfield site.

This is baseboard 3 with the hidden loop line from Riverbank sidings to Henllan Station running up the grade next to the backboard.

The station will start about half way along this board and continue to the board break just in front of the controller in the distance.

Marty
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Looking good, Marty.

Just a quick query; do the type of plug-in connectors you have used for the lever frame cause you any grief? It may just be the way the photograph shows it, but it looks as though there are several uninsulated soldered joints in very close proximity to one another. Perhaps the distances between the connections are greater than they look. This is not in any way a criticism; just an observation. Is the gauge and type of wire you use perhaps rigid enough to stop accidental movement and therefore preclude any short circuits, or do you use any other means of safeguarding the connections?

I have yet to decide upon inter-baseboard and control panel connectors so I would value your comments on the type you have chosen.

Cheers,

Perry

Posted: Wed May 30, 2007 12:56 pm Post subject:

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Perry,
All of the soldered joints are in closish proximity to each other and are uninsulated. I've experienced no problems so far. I was a little concerned about it myself but it seems to work.

The gap, in most instances is twice the diameter of the wire used, although there are a couple of different sizes used to get the colours I wanted.

I was careful to position the soldered connections in such a way as to maximise the space between them and minimise the amount of solder. Indeed, one of the joints had to be re-soldered due to too little solder. Where there was a solder "spike", a file has been applied to remove it.

The black casing is super glued to the wood and the whole thing, when connected together is solid. The pins are just push to fit and hold firmly and don't fall out, although, if used in a situation where they are constantly in use, this might change as they wear.

The connector was just something I had at the bottom of the electric bits box and as I too have yet to decide on the board connectors, I thought I'd give it a go.

For my money, the board connectors are going to be more rugged.

I started looking for options the other day when I was in the electronics shop, oops - geek alert, it's all hobby based really I promise.

At the moment 9 pin D-sub computer connectors are looking good, but I'm still looking. You can get up to 50 pin DD-50 connectors which should do for control panels. They are not cheap but you will only have to do it once.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D-subminiature

cheers,

Marty
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The D-type connectors are excellent. I have used various sizes in electronic projects for several years. One of the advantages of using them is that the two parts can be secured together by means of knurled-headed locking screws, thereby ensuring that they can't be dislodged accidentaly.

Perry

Posted: Wed May 30, 2007 4:23 pm Post subject:

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... and they should handle model railway voltage and current OK?
Marty

Posted: Wed May 30, 2007 5:47 pm Post subject:

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The specifications I have for D-type connectors quote a working current of 7.5A per contact and a working voltage of 300V rms. All well over what we need. The only thing you perhaps need to bear in mind is the diameter of the cable you use; just make sure there is room for it all. I will use a multicore cable for these connections as I find it a lot easier and tidier for this purpose, but it's obviously a matter of personal preference.

Perry

Posted: Thu May 31, 2007 5:35 am Post subject:

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Perry,I bought some D connectors recently (at a small model railway exhibition) in readyness for when I do my electrics.
One question ... when I make the connections using my choosen wire, do I need to use heatshrink tubing to cover the soldered ends
Jeff

Posted: Thu May 31, 2007 11:47 pm Post subject:

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You shouldn't need to. The places you solder the wires into are shaped like little 'cups' so the end of the wire pushes into them for soldering. Provided you don't strip too much insulation off the wire all should be fine. Also, bear in mind that the heatshrink tubing would add more bulk inside the connector body; something you can well do without.

Perry

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 12:20 am Post subject:

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Thought so, but just as well to check with someone who's used them before.
Thanks Perry.
Jeff

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 8:06 am Post subject:

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Sounds like Dsub connectors are the go then... I'll pick up a set over the next couple of weeks for testing.
Marty

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Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2007 9:17 am Post subject:

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The Henllan Baseboard – KISS (do you really need me to explain this one?) priniciple.

After your comments earlier about the “banana” shaped baseboard for the Henllan Station layout and the difficulties transferring the shape from the plan to the plywood, the CAD plan was consulted at length and with the assistance of T and a glass of wine there has been a modification to the plan. Modification number two thousand and twelve maybe!!

Why make it more complicated than I have to?

The L-Girder framework and ribbon subroadbed construction being used on Newcastle Emlyn is designed, I hope, to reduce weight and hopefully make a layout more portable when (not if???) it becomes good enough to be offered up for exhibition.

As such, all baseboards for stations, yards, loops and sidings were planned to support track and associated buildings and have an extra 5cm’s around the edge to support the scenery. This has led to some interesting baseboard shapes and thus the difficulty.

It’s just not worth faffing about for the amount of weight that is going to be saved.
The Henllan Station baseboard is going rectangular and a trip to the hardware on Sunday for an appropriately sized bit of ply is proposed.

Why not go shopping on Saturday you ask?

Easy, the once a year Australian Model Railway Association (WA Branch) Perth Show is on this long weekend at the Claremont showgrounds and there are 55 stands, about half which should be layouts, half will be traders and displays.
Hopefully a couple more second-hand GWR brake vans will change hands and be added to the Newcastle Emlyn rolling stock inventory.

It opens at 10.00am and there is a spot for me in the ticket queue at 9.45am

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The Show… and Henllan Station

A good show, plenty of quality, and not so quality, layouts to provide inspiration. No photos taken, sorry, realised after that they probably would have been of interest to everyone and so… won’t waffle on too much about it.

Best of show for me was a Sn31/2 scale layout of Bridgetown, one of the country towns in the south west of Western Australia. I used to holiday there as a youngster and could recognise the exact spot in the station forecourt where we would wait to catch the bus back up to Perth. Passenger trains having stopped long ago.

The scale has been specifically chosen to allow modellers to create the Western Australian Government Railways (WAGR) 3’ 6” narrow gauge lines on OO track but at 1:64 scale. The special interest group scratch build a lot of it but have also developed their own kits, about 40 odd just for the WAGR. That’s dedication for you!!

Here’s a WAGR Pm class in Sn31/2. Photo and model by Phil Knife.



No GWR Brake vans to be had unfortunately, but I did manage to take advantage of show discounts and second hand bargains and have added another 9 wagons to the fleet and a Kestrel plastic building kit.

The ply base board for Henllan Station has been purchased and only needs a couple more modifications to its shape before the support frame is added underneath.

The working plan of the layout of the Station looks like this...

Marty
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There, that is everything copied over from Barchester Forum 2.
Over the next couple of days I'll see if I can recreate the missing posts that bring the thread up to date with progress on the Newcastle Emlyn layout.
cheers

Marty
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Posted: Thu Jun 07, 2007 9:53 pm Post subject:

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Some good news...

The package of old Graham Farish loco's that was dispatched to BRLines has finally arrived in the UK. While not critical if they went astray, their loss for sentimental value would have been a blow.

Thankfully, Bob Sutton has reported that after a trip to customs to retreive them from the customs layout out the back (what else would customs want them for?), my loco's have been added to his repair list.

A list, I might add, just out of interests sake, for I am not worried, that will take him at least 5 weeks to clear. Business is obviously good.

I am between jobs, finished the old job today and have a whole 10 days off before I start my next job... should be able to make a bit of progress on the layout in that time.

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Good luck Marty, its good to watch the progress (all the details are interesting)

Mike

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Marty

A great story and a superb project, which is coming on well. If it is any consolation, I had a couple of Dapol locos on Grimethorpe and they were not good. They had no pulling power, just used to skid when pulling more than a few wagons and I too had derailing problems with them. At the time I put it down to the Kato track I was using.

A quick question: One of the reasons (apart from my feeble eyesight :) ) why I changed to 00 gauge was that I found uncoupling in N gauge very difficult, to the extent that shunting was a tedious affair. Have you worked out how you will uncouple your stock? On Grimethorpe I resorted to running the the stock as made up trains and rarely uncoupled wagons.

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Marty
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I have hopes that either the PECO ELSI magnetic uncoupling system or one of the other similiar systems available from the UK or US will do the trick.
Members of the N gauge society have reported good success after some effort with various systems.

I'll start with the PECO system because the initial modifications to rolling stock will be fairly minor. Remove the springs from any couplings that have them, add a shim to prop up drooping couplings, add the elsi metallic strip, add the electro-magnets under the base boards and track.

If I have to go to a different system I'll probably have to replace the standard N gauge couplings.

It's on the list and I'll document the saga when I get to it.

I'm confident I can make it work. :roll: :lol: :lol:

...btw once I've finished this layout I think the next one will be O gauge in the garden :!: :!: :wink:

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Good to see it all here and up to date, Marty.

Mike

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Good work Marty.
Nice to see Newcastle Emlyn back :!:

Marty
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The Station Clock

The clock means a lot to me and was in my layout thread in the previous forum so I'm going to put it back on here.

T thought about getting me an original GWR station clock for my birthday, bless her. Ebay proved that they were physically available but also proved that financially they were not.

This little gem comes from a guy in the UK who can print anything you want onto the face of a standard, modern, mass produced clock.



I think it's great and it takes up pride of place in my layout room.



Only thing now is that I have no excuse for being late :!: :shock:

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Nice to see the clock again Marty :)

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"Nice to see the clock again Marty"

Yes. Pride of place and deservedly so.

Mike

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Ah, the clock.. I'd forgotten that post. What a lovely gift that was/is :D Nice to see it back where it belongs :!:

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That's got to be the "must have" clock for all serious GWR fans, Marty :!:

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... So we must send one to Perry :!: :!: :!: :wink:

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:twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:

What an idea :!:

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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The Henllan Station Board

Still catching up with what has happened and was posted.

The Henllan Station Board has been constructed and is in place.
Designed to be removeable to allow access to the underside and relocation to the workbench if required.

Here it is leaning against the back scene board prior to fitting onto the baseboard


...and here, in the background, in position. In the foreground a spline sub-roadbed is being constructed to carry the line up the "Henllan Bank" from Riverbank sidings.


A couple of nails have been hammered into pre-drilled holes in the baseboard joists and then corresponding holes, have been drilled into the frame of the Henllan board to assist with alignment at one end.
At the far end a tight fitting wooden channel has been constructed on the baseboard to match the frame of the Henllan baseboard. A firm tap is required to get the Henllan board in and out but once in it doesn't move.

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Marty
Great pictures which clearly show the techniques you are applying. I assume you will use flexi track for the curve, or are you able to mould the splines accurately enough to use sectional track?

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Flexi-track it is Novice. That way I can try to make the transition curves more prototypical. Set track curves always look too toy like to me.
Having said that I don't see why you couldn't make the spline sub-roadbed to match set track if needed.

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Spline Sub-roadbed for Henllan Bank

A close up of construction of a spline sub-roadbed leading from the hidden return line from Riverbank Siding to Henllan Station.
4 splines on the inside of the centreline have been cut, glued and clamped.
One more on the outside to go and then 24hrs to dry before removing the centreline nails from the risers and adding the 5 splines on the outside of the centreline.


A close up of the completed sub-roadbed


An overall view showing the L-girder, joist, riser and sub-roadbed construction.


3 different methods of construction have been used for the sub-roadbeds.
At the back of the photo where the track has been laid 9mm ply has been cut to shape and then glued to the top of the risers.
The flat expanse of the Henllan Station board is a traditional baseboard of 9mm ply glued to a softwood underframe.
In the foreground waiting for track is the spline roadbed.

Why, well the station, yard and milk factory siding need to be flat to stop my rolling stock... well... rolling away when parked in sidings.
The straight return loop at the back of the board was easy to do with ply and although I detect the tiniest undulation between the risers as the unsupported section submits to gravity, it will be in a tunnel.
The spline construction, while a little more time consuming, won't droop, makes really nice transition curves both horizontally and vertically and is therapeutic to put together.

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Marty wrote:Electrics
Progress... and holding

I'm itching to get on but we have visitors this week and one of them is using the loft bed in the layout room for sleeping.


Tell them to p*ss off Marty as you have important things to do :P

Darryl...thinking :?: How dare guests invite themselves over when you have a railroad to build :P

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Marty - after many months of reading your wonderful posts I get around to asking you the most basic of questions, and doing so for a very personal reason. Why did you choose to model the Newcastle Emlyn line? I ask this because I was born in Carmarthen (although my family moved away to Worcestershire at an early age so I have no memories of the place.) My one connection with the railway was through my grandfather, who was the town cobbler in Fishguard, whose closest friend was the Stationmaster at Goodwick Harbour station.

Naturally I follow your layout with great interest. Best wishes to you and T.

Marty
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Hi Tim, thanks for your interest and your wishes.

No Welsh family blood connections on my side I'm afraid although my mother spent many of her young school years in a boarding school near Llangollen and her family holidays were on Angelsea.

I've passed through Wales once in 1986, visiting Snowdon at one end and Chepstow Castle at the other before driving on to Bristol and I have some dim memories of a childhood visit to Swansea.

Like many of us, life got in the way of model railways and I spent a good 10 years being an armchair modeler, reading magazines and collecting bits and pieces of rolling stock as and when I could.

One of the magazines was the quarterly GWR Journal by Wild Swan publications. The journal fuelled my interest in the GWR which I had always liked and gave me plenty of possible layouts to think about for when the time came to start modeling again.

There is a wonderful article about the Newcastle Emlyn Branch in Journal 37 with a detailed account of not only the line, but also some of the people who worked on the branch. The article includes lots of pictures and a layout plan of the station.

The station layout was a classic GWR branch line terminus with plenty of scope for operations and I thought then, “that would be fun to model”. A bit clichéd perhaps according to the model railway press but not to me! I'd never made a GWR branch line!!

So, many years later, when the time finally came to start up a layout again a little spark of memory reminded me of the article. It took a bit of flicking through the stack of Journals I've collected to find it. I think we are up to Journal 60 now. Such hardship, all those Castles and Kings and 14xx tanks and autocoaches. :lol: (I hadn't found the online index at that time).

The timeless, measured pace of one of God's Wonderful Railways wandering along the wooded banks of the Afon Teifi on it's scenic floodplain still felt right. There were enough hillsides covered in fields, hedgerows and woodlands to allow my layout to be blended into landscape. The history, people, produce and character of the line was as powerful to me as I had remembered. Maybe sub-concious feelings from a previous life :) but this was what I wanted to try and model.

The authors’ painstaking research provides information on passenger and goods movements, what goods were delivered to and dispatched from the stations on the branch and a whole lot of other information that made the branch come alive. Undoubtedly their aim was not only to record for posterity the history of the line but also to provide us modelers with enough data to make a good go of reproducing it. The least I could do was to show my appreciation of their efforts by having a go.

So be it, it felt right and there was a lot of information to help and it was time! The "plan" is not only to have an operational model railway but to have a character and history that will give many, many years of modeling pleasure.
Not a perfect copy of the prototype, I'm not that good, nor did I have the space (not yet anyway :twisted: ) but I'm hoping that I'll be able to capture the essence of the branch.

Here is a modern aerial photo of the disused line crossing the Afon Teifi and approaching Newcastle Emlyn which is in the top left corner of the picture. The line crosses from bottom right to top left and can be seen by the straight line of trees crossing the river in the mid-ground.



Progress is slow at the moment as work, SES and the shops place their demands upon my time. Mainly wiring up the Henllan station track feeders and point motors, contemplating the construction of the bridge across the river and the last curve to join up the circle of track.

Here is a photo of the track layout and the Henllan bank which has been seen before on the old forum but hasn’t yet made it into this thread. This was about 2 months ago and all work since then has been underneath the Henllan station baseboard.



A visit to my local model shop at lunchtime yesterday resulted in the purchase of another point to go into the station layout, there are 13 required in total of which 6 have been laid. A few more point motors got added to the shopping too. Hopefully I can squeeze a couple more hours in layout room this weekend.

Slowly but steadily the dream is becoming reality... and, as always, I visit this forum a couple of times a day during the week to learn, be inspired, be part of the camaraderie and help out where I can.

So to all the lads and lasses, I'm still here, still building, still enjoying, am still in awe of your skills and will update again soon.

I've even started a special project that, if it works out, I will post as a separate thread in due course.
cheers

Les
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Tim -Thanks for asking Marty that question. The story behind the layout can be fascinating as this response from Marty proves.

Marty - your rationale for building the railway is terrific and really makes it come alive. I shall always view it with your reasons in mind in future. This is a "MUST READ". Many thanks. :D :D

Bob (FC) and Moderators - Is there any chance that whenever anyone registers their layout in the personal layout sections we request them to start with their reason for building the particular layout etc? They may not be as evocative as Marty's but I'm sure there are some great stories out there which are better for the telling. :wink:

Les

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Thank you, Marty, for that wonderful description and history. It brings the layout plan to life! I agree with Les - the personal motives and experiences behind a layout or prospective layout add a great deal of colour to the narrative.

Marty
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Tim, Les
Glad you enjoyed the rationale behind the layout. I’ll try and keep up the story as I go along.

Mounting PECO Point Motors to the Henllan Baseboard

The branch had only been built to one of the intermediate stations by its original parent company before the Great Western took over and completed the line to Newcastle Emlyn. The light branch line track, all stations, bridges, crossings, yards and the one tunnel were engineered to the normal Great Western high standards as it was anticipated that the line would eventually extend to Carmarthen and support a bit of traffic. This standard was maintained for a long time although I imagine that after the second war the decline would have set in over the last years of passenger traffic which ended in 1952. Vegetation would have encroached into the right of way during spring and summer even with a dedicated track crew and I’m looking forward to modeling this when I get to the scenery side of things.

Trying to lay the track to as high a standard as possible in an effort to minimize derailments and poor running on the layout is time consuming, will be worth it in the end but I’ll be glad when it’s done.

Another point motor was added to the underside of the Henllan baseboard last night and a couple of track feeders too. It never ceases to amaze me how long all the wiring and soldering takes!! The Hellan baseboard has been lifted off the main L-girder/joist frame and tipped on its side to make it easier to work on the underside. At least that part of the plan mostly works. I say mostly as I have two problems with it. One which is immediate and the other which I can foresee further down the line (pun intended).

Firstly, the gap between the Henllan board and the spline sub-roadbed from the Henllan Bank was bridged by a long rectangle of PCB board in place of the normal cork roadbed. This PCB board was screwed down firmly at each end, a piece of track, with sleepers removed, was soldered to the PCB board and then, using a razor saw both the track and PCB board were cut through. The theory being that track alignment would be maintained when the Hellan board was lifted. Only it didn’t quite work. The alignment is out by about .5mm horizontally and 1mm vertically. Sigh. The transition between the spline sub-roadbed and the baseboard mustn’t have been completely flat. I can fix it by unscrewing the riser below the spline sub-roadbed, re-aligning, clamping and re-screwing but sheesh, these things are sent to try us.

Secondly, lifting the Henllan baseboard is relatively easy at the moment but I can see that once the scenery is built all the easy handholds will be gone and lifting the board will be a bit tricky, probably needing two people, one pushing up from underneath until the other can get their hands around the edges. Workable I think but not easy.

When mounting point motors with extension arms through small holes in the baseboard, alignment is critical and fiddly.
By this I mean that the throw arm of the point motor has to travel in the same direction as the tie bar on the points above the board, and it has to be fairly accurate or the point won’t change properly. When mounting the point motors directly to the point, alignment isn’t a problem because the PECO motors have lugs that mount into holes in the PECO points. But I don’t like the huge holes that have to be cut in the baseboard to allow the motors to fit and so have opted for the small hole through the baseboard, the long extension arm on the point motor and more time taken to mount each point motor.

At the moment the throw bar extension arm is poked through the hole in the base board and into the hole in the tie bar, then I orient the point motor to the points by trial and error, sliding the point motor around until the points change freely and easily when pushed manually.
Once satisfied that the point motor is in the correct position, one hand has to hold the point motor so it doesn’t move as the other hand reaches for a pencil to mark the position on the underside of the board.

The number of times that blasted pencil is out of reach!! To reach it requires letting go the point motor and having to start the alignment all over again! You’d think I’d learn!! Then there is the pin vice needed to drill the pilot holes for the screws, the screws themselves and a screw driver and invariably minute adjustment is needed after the first screws have been placed because the point motor moved just that little bit!

If anybody has any suggestions as to how this process could be made easier I’d be happy to hear them. Maybe some double sided sticky tape on the mounting plate of the point motor might do the trick, hmmmm that sounds like a plan.

I haven’t shown any photos as under board wiring is pretty boring but if anyone wants one let me know.

Cheers

MikeC
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Marty thanks for talking us through the point motor installation - something I'll have to tackle before long.

Thanks also for the background info. Interesting stuff.

Mike

Marty
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Cheers Mike, glad it was useful.

Marty
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Henllan Baseboard Wiring continues...

Steady progress is being made on the wiring under the Henllan Baseboard.

A pleasant and productive Sunday afternoon was spent in the layout room listening to the Australian cricket team whomping the Sri Lankans around the ground at Bellerive Oval in Tasmania.

Having the Henllan Station baseboard removeable has made the process of wiring a lot easier as can be seen from the photo below.


For those that are interested a close up showing the incomplete wiring so far...


Blue - "common" return to controllers and power packs
Red - Track power feed from DC controller (eventually via cab control rotary switches)
Yellow - power to point motors (not yet connected but eventually to power pack via PECO switches)
Greeen - power return from point motors to common return.

You can also see the feeders through the baseboard to the track.

Originally I was just soldering the wire to the feeder, holding them together with a pair of tweezers until the solder cured.
Now I'm making a loop in the bottom of the feeder and a hook in the power wire to make a mechanical connection as well as a soldered one. Mainly because every now and then a wire would get snagged on bits of me as I worked under the baseboard and get pulled off the feeder. This method is more secure and will hopefully last longer.

Christmas trading starts in the first week of December and I'll be working 7 days a week in the shops. Still planning on getting the loop finished for my nephew but it's going to be touch and go.
cheers

rector
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Great wiring, Marty - and cricket commentary is the perfect backdrop to such work. Now that's something I really miss, being a die-hard Worcestershire suporter. Gawd - I miss cricket :cry:

Marty
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Thanks Tim.
The cricket is being streamed live from this site...
http://www.abc.net.au/news/sport/cricket/
Just have to move your computer down into the layout room :lol: :lol:
Lunch at the moment... Sri Lanka have 2 and a half days to get over 500 runs, a big ask. Currently 1 for 20. :D

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Nice work there Marty1

Wiring looks nice and tidy, easier to fault find/test. Looking forward to progress as I continue to play....sorry test :D

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Superb layout in the making there Marty using N gauge really gives you alot more scope than the larger scales for creating a large layout in a smaller area. I look forward to seeing it develop
cheers Brian

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Marty i found double sided sticky tape was the answer
after trying everything else,at least the motor stays there
while get the screws in. :roll: :roll: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: 8)

Marty
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Thanks for confirming that Owen. I'll give it a go. I noticed that someone else, I can't remember who, maybe Tony, has a neat straight line drawn under the baseboard to line the point motor up on.
I guess that a small pilot hole is drilled through the baseboard in line with the tie bar throw axis and then the holes are used to draw the line.
I'll give that a go too.

I've got one more PECO point left but no base plate, I won't buy another pack of 5 base plates but will try turning the point motor lugs out and use them to fix the motor to the underside of the baseboard.

After discussions on this forum the next set of points that I will try will be the SEEP ones.

Tony, I'm looking forward to some testing too, enjoy... :lol: :lol:

Brian, thanks for your interest, delighted to have such comments from someone who's empire has expanded out into the garden :!: :!:

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Hi Marty,

Yes I used the line approach below for the lining up of the motors.

I simply drilled a small hole each side of the throw bar and then used these and the center operation hole to give me a center line to align the motor.

I am in the process of a little 'How To' at the moment......stay tuned. :D

Marty
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Many thanks Tony, can you just line up your point motor with the line and tighten the screws or do you still need a little testing to get the alignment right :?:

Tony
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Hi Marty,

I have just posted my method in the Hints & Tips section for the Seep Motors, however I use small jigs to help keep the alignment....very simple to make and even easier to use :D
A little testing is always required :wink: but can be done by hand to check for free movement and if using the internal switching that the seep contacts move fully to each side and not short. (The Seep motors use a small spring and washer on the bottom of the actuating rod to make a circuit on the mounting pcb between contacts)

Hope that helps.

Marty
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Got it, top job mate, I'll give it a go. Thanks muchly.

Marty
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A quick update - closing the loop

Well... not quite but I might make it in time for the Nephew yet.

The spline sub road bed for the return loop has been constructed but not yet glued into place. That's it at the back near the back board.



Notably the final link, the bridge over the Afon Teifi, is still missing, hopefully the supporting structure and sub road bed will be built over the next week or so. Still thinking on how to do it as the bridge covers a base board join on the left hand side.

Testing of the main lines through the Henllan Station layout is ongoing

:lol: :lol: thankfully the curved layout seems to be working out OK and I'm now itching to complete the track laying for the yard and milk factory sidings, preliminary point placement can be seen in the picture below.



... and just to show you what I'm heading for, 1472 and Autocoach on the... ahh... "bridge" heading towards Newcastle Emlyn. Some issues with out of scale leaves but you get the idea and it keeps me motivated. :roll: :roll: :roll: :lol: :lol: :lol:


Many thanks to photographer Alessandro Orler and Webmaster Jeremy Clulow of http://www.newcastle-emlyn.com for the use of the above photo background and other photos of his that are on my layout backboard that members may see from time to time.

Wayne Williams
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I am so envious!!! Someday, maybe I'll get that far with my layout. I do like that picture on the wall Marty, where did it come from :?:

Wayne

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Wayne, glad you liked it, too many photos of benchwork, wiring and track in my thread and I felt the need of some inspiration.

It is actually a picture of the Afon Teifi valley, a laser print of a photo downloaded from one of the Newcastle Emlyn Town websites (there are two town websites), just one of the many bits and pieces accumulated over time to assist me with modelling the area as best I can.

For the benefit of Bob and the moderators the website encourages the downloading of the photos, making them freely available in pdf format. I don't believe there are any copyright issues but I can ask if you wish me too.

Perry
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It would be nice if you could just clarify the copyright issue for us, please Marty. Better safe than sorry. :wink:

Thanks.

Perry

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Permission granted... and the credits applied to my previous post.

Hi Martin,

G'Day Perth!

Alessandro will be delighted if you would use some. He lives in Italy. A small credit to him and http://www.newcastle-emlyn.com would be appreciated.

If you have time, a note on our guest book would be nice

http://www.newcastle-emlyn.com/guestbook

If you have further information /photos/text/ about your project. I'd be glad to put an article about it on the website.

Somebody basing anything on Newcastle Emlyn is news here!

Cheers,

Jeremy


you wrote to me saying:

G'day from Perth, Western Australia.
I'm building a model railway in N gauge loosely based on the Newcastle Emlyn Branch and have been using your website as inspiration for the project.
I'm also recording a journal of the construction of my model layout in a not for profit, social web forum http://www.yourmodelrailway.com and would like your permission to use some of Alessandro Orler's July 2000 photography in your gallery 1 to illustrate some of my random posts on his forum.
If you have no objections would you reply to martin_craveprovedore.com.au
many thanks
Martin Hale

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Excellent!

Thanks Marty.

Perry

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Progress Update Jan 2008 - The loop is now closed

As mentioned earlier the pressure was on before Christmas to complete the circle so that my visiting nephew would be able to drive trains. I made the deadline with 2 days to spare :shock: :shock:

I wanted to complete the circle so that inexperienced drivers wouldn't run my loco's off the end of an incomplete track and into the void with predictable results.

I need not have worried, at 7 years of age, Young Nephew is a co-ordinated, precise and careful driver and goodness me..... did we have a lot of fun.

The picture below shows the Henllan Station track work developing slowly, the spur at bottom right is going to go into the milk factory and the point work on the left into the goods yard loop and sidings.
In the background you can see where the loop has been joined across the bridge infront of the River Tiefi photo. The bridge only has one of it's two tracks laid at the moment.


Here is a closer view of the bridge substructure, the plan is for a girder bridge on stone abutments. The arch is quite narrow and high at this point where the Tiefi passes through a steep sided gorge.


Actually, time to 'fess up, a fair bit of modellers license will be used as the prototype bridge actually carries road traffic and the railway bridge is further downstream and nowhere near as spectacular as I hope this will be... but it's my railway right?

Young Nephew was suitably impressed and all of my rolling stock had to come out of their storage boxes and be lined up on the workbench by type.
Engines in one row, coaches in another, milk tanks in another, cattle wagons another and so on. Once the entire range had been suitably admired we spent a very pleasant couple of hours mixing and matching and testing, testing, testing.
Everyone else in the family were sitting outside drinking champagne and taking dips in the spa.... but I reckon Young Nephew and I were happier.

Neither of my sons are real train nuts, although they will have a drive occasionally when they visit, but Young Nephew has got it bad. Pity he lives on the other side of the country.

Heres a close up of the trackwork around the station. Future work will be developing the milk factory sidings, goods loop and yard.


I've also started a thread in the lineside section for the weathering wagons project which I am looking forward to.
I've done a couple in the past but I am looking forward to learning how to do better.

A weathered SR Cattle wagon and a repainted and slightly weathered United Dairies Milk tank behind a 94xx Pannier Tank.


Aarrgghhh, horrible shiny rail and no ballast, so much fun to be had. :lol: :lol:

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Looking really good Marty. All the basics done and tested, well tested by the sound of it. All the best to come. I must say I really like the photograph of the countryside that you have there. Do you have more like that as I was wondering if you could use such gorgeous pictures in a background.

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Thats going to be a cracking layout when its finished Marty.

cheers Brian

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Thanks Bob, really enjoying building the layout and sharing it on the forum. Helps with the motivation.
The plan has always been to use a photographic backdrop. Unfortunately I don't have any photographs suitable.... yet.
Having read up on what photographs are suitable, there are a whole bunch of things that have to be worked out to get the scale, perspective, colour, light and period right, I'm a little sceptical that I can get what I need without travelling to Wales and taking them myself.
Not because I'm a great photographer, because I'm not but more because the process of getting the right photos could be quite time consuming and I feel that any well meaning volunteers will get annoyed with the project very quickly.
When the time comes I'll document the process in the backscenes topic.

If the worst comes to worst I can always paint the backscene, but then I'm a better photographer than I am a landscape painter.

It might be cheaper to fly MikeC over to Perth for a holiday and painting contract :lol: :lol:

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What about e-mailing the counciils involved and see what freebies they have got in the way of photographs. Bound to have some stuff because of their advertising.

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Marty, I'd not had time to catch up on your layout since mid-November, so I've just spent a very pleasant 15 mins. doing so :!: :!:

Compliments on your progress, as always your benchwork is first class and things seem to be progressing nicely.

Funny you should comment on the driving expertise of your young nephew. My eldest grandson is 9 and he's also a natural, in fact he spends time "teaching" his 41/2 year old brother how to drive. Soon they'll be better than me :!: :!:
The route setting studs and LEDs are the new craze and every piece of track has to be gone over so that they can be "tested".
Good fun to see it coming together, awaiting your backscene thread with interest :!:

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Great strides forward on the layout, Marty! It's also good to remind ourselves, when we sometimes tend to get bogged down in the detail of modelling, that if a child can have fun then it's all worth while :!: Good luck in the image search for the backdrops.

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Good to see your layout again Marty. I'm almost at the backscene stage and will watch what you do with interest. Keep it coming. :)

Les

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Thanks for the encouragement all, it really does help.

Bob - Good thought about the local councils, I'll give them a go. I've got two contacts in Newcastle Emlyn already and when the time comes I'll ask for their help too.

Jeff - I always wanted a good model railway when I was a youngster and couldn't have one. Part of the desire for building this one is to give the Nephew the chance.

Tim - Should have seen his face when he saw the layout and even after several hours he didn't want to leave.

Les - It will be a while before I get to the backscenes, don't hold your breath.

Marty
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Henllan Station - Cab Control and Block section diagram

The acknowledged drawback of DC control is the wiring required to allow multiple engine operation on a layout.

Trying to get my head around how to wire up the Henllan station layout to allow for up to 4 contollers to be used has kept me thinking over the last couple of days. A bit of planning now to avoid the "DOH" moments later on.

I think the diagram is fairly clear for anyone with an interest in such things. I haven't bothered drawing in all the track feeders from the other rotary switches as many are already soldered in place and those yet to come aren't difficult.


If anybody can see anything I've done wrong or could do better I'd be glad to hear.
cheers

vinny
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Marty-agree with what Brian said,its going to be a lovely layout. Our plan was to use photos for a backscene,look forward to seeing yours :D

Marty
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Thanks Vinnies,
I've seen some photographic backscenes used on layouts in the model railway magazines and they look superb.
I've never been much of a painter but am a pretty good hand with photoshop so.... the hardest bit is going to be getting the original photos.

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What a treat it would've been, seeing your layout giving so much pleasure to another. Good on you Marty.

Mike

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A 90' Elm in N gauge - or at least I hope it will be

Unable to use the power drill late at night a while ago I started this "special project".

Inspired by MikeC's trees and the various articles and links I've read and determined NOT to use commercial trees that never really cut the mustard in my mind, I made a start.

This is as far as I've got so far...


Elm's do get to 85' to 95' in height but this one doesn't really look that big...

Let's give it some perspective.


Hooley Dooley... I'm not going need too many of these babies.

Wayne Williams
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Marty, I like the tree and I will say it again, I Like The Tree!

Are you sure it's N gauge? :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:

Wayne

[size=9]I Still Like The Tree, No Font Intended! :roll: :roll: :roll:

Marty
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:lol: :lol: :lol:
Wayne
When I finished twisting it up and put it on the layout I thought I was going to need a chainsaw :shock: :lol: :lol:
But some research has photos of record height Elms currently in existance so I thought why not.
It will be a great talking point.

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That tree is going to be brilliant :D


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Marty

The height of your tree is not that it is to tall, its that most model railways the trees are shorter than one finds in the real world.

Our expectation of model tree heights is therefore not "real"

BLG

(The member formerly known as Bryan 8) )

MikeC
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Marty I take it you've measured the tree and know what height it represents. It looks like it'll be a very elegant specimen.
Yes Bryan I agree with you that very few layouts actually have scale-height trees. It takes courage to have them :!: More courage than I have, I must admit. Even my layout's landmark tree doesn't measure up. It's really only a fifty footer. I should've made it at least half as high again.
I need only look out the back door to be reminded how big they really are.

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The trouble is that because of our perception a large tree can dominate the scene.

My landmark tree as are all my trees are bought ready made one.



I fancy one day replacing it with a large Yew which you would traditionally find in a church yard.

BLG

(The member formerly known as Bryan 8) )

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I think this is another case of if it looks right then it is right. The eye doesn't seem to notice about the discrepancy in height because there are so many different height trees in real life so we accept that our modelled trees are ok. Which they are of course. :wink:

Marty
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As the poet said, 'Only God can make a tree' -- probably because it's so hard to figure out how to get the bark on.
Woody Allen (1935 - )

Thanks for the feed back all,
I was a little worried that I'd messed up my math and had created a monster. So went back and checked again.

I've confirmed that Elms reach a 90' height from several sources.
Hickory 128', Hemlock 126', Beech 96' and Chestnut 128'
At 2mm to the foot that means these champion trees are between 180 - 256mm tall.
My Elm is about 200mm.

I've always felt the model railways in most instances don't model trees big enough and I'm quite prepared to have a go at some big ones. Not too many big ones as these figures above are for exceptionally tall trees and the majority would be smaller.

After all, I choose N gauge to allow the railway to blend (might that read disappear) into the scenery.

Yesterday in Perth it reached 41.7 deg C.

During the evening, about 7.30pm, a cacophony of cracking, crashing and thumping resounded through the house from somewhere in our backyard. The dog decided that the world was coming to an end and shot off under the bed while both cats, wild eyed and low to the ground, disappeared in different directions for any refuge they could find.

A tall gum tree in our yard had shed one of it's major branches, the fallen limb straddling the fence at one end and resting on the neighbors’ garage on the other.

Surprisingly there was little damage, some chips in the top of the fence and a dent in the tin roof of the garage. An hours work with a bow saw and we can now see a lot more sky to the west and there is a pile of timber and leaves waiting for a skip bin.

After that there was nothing for it but to continue the tree theme into the evening and I was lucky enough to have T join me in a tree building session for the layout.

We decided to try and make trees a little less lofty than The Elm and I think we were fairly successful.
The first coating of "bark" was add to a couple too.

The picture below shows the 4 "normal" trees, 3 of them with the first layer of bark mix applied.
The bark mix is made up of roughly 4 parts "Polyfiller", 3 parts PVA, 3 parts water and then acrylic paint to colour as required. The bark mix is stored in the little jar for subsequent coats.


If the bark mix works I'll apply it to The Elm.

The twisted wire still shows under the first layer of bark mix in this picture, this is Ts' first tree, might be an Apple? ... nope too big... maybe a young Oak


Not really sure what the next two are meant to be.... tree like I guess.


This one is a bit smaller and has two coats of bark mix applied.


Maybe a Plain tree or a Beech, I got a bit carried away again and it's pretty tall.

I DO like this one, took me about an hour to twist up.

A close up of the twisted wire structure before the bark mix is added.


I've deliberately avoided using coconut fibre because I feel that it will be too large for N scale.

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Your tree is very tall but not overly tall. I'd do a few more to go with it of various heights and place them where you can 'lose' the train behind them :D

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That's what I'm hoping to achieve Vinnies, Fangorn Forest here we come :!: :!: :!:

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I hear the Ents 'whoarrumble' in complete agreement :!: But let's not be too hasty... :wink:

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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
I wonder.... it's very tempting.... I wonder if I could model one :shock:

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Those trees are off to a great start. Looking forward to seeing some in leaf.

Mike

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Me too... going shopping for scatter today.

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Looking Good Marty, I'll be keeping an eye on this thread!

Wayne

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The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit.
Moliere (1622 - 1673)

Unfortunately I think I hurried the growth of these, they are not quite what I wanted, and I can see room for improvement.

However... I'm happy to share the process.

I thought this one might be a bit Silver Birch... ish

Lower foilage first, a test drive of the teased out plastic scourer. Trunk still base brown.


The trunk painted and the rest of the lower foilage added, sprayed with hair spray/lacquer, sprinkled with Woodland scenics fine scatter - burnt grass, sprayed again, more scatter, sprayed again... until it looked Ok.


Upper foilage added and then a fine coating of Heki summer grass added to highlight and represent tip growth.


Hmmmm.... might be a Swamp Gum that's been through a bushfire :shock:
Still.... lots of fun. :lol: :lol: :lol:

NEXT....

Tracy's Tree got "the process" but in a different shape.


Well.... it's tree... like.

NEXT....

I'm not unhappy with them.
Working through the process was worthwhile.
I think that the trunks need to be a bit thicker and that I need to use a lighter coloured scatter for the new growth rather than the flock.

To make it look like a particular species is going to take a bit of care obviously... any thoughts, comments, suggestions appreciated.

PS The featured GWR Cattle Wagon is the result of the weathering challenge in the Lineside Section.

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Well for starters the wagon looks very good indeed alongside the tree :!:

You've made great progress with the trees.
I do agree with you though about the thickness of the trunks. Personally I'd like to see them thicker, but modelling in N is totally foreign to me. I think with a thicker trunk that first one in particular would look fine.

As for actual species - I reckon I might be able to do local trees like gums and figs for example, but European species would be so hard to model from here.


Some coconut fibres are more like hair in thickness, so I'm sure you could use some for branches, but it would get fiddly selecting and glueing the right ones.

I'm sure you'll keep going with them and find ways to refine them. I'm looking forward to reading all about it.

Mike

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Marty, I've never tried to build a tree. All I can say is I hope my first try looks half as good as yours! I agree with you about the trunk diameter though, it needs to be thicker.

Wayne

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Mike this is from the forum Index and gives you the shapes of British trees, as well as others, if you ever fancy having a go.

British Trees.

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Great looking trees Marty !!

Don't worry about the species - trees are trees - some are "bushy", some are "long and lean" and others spread. Mix 'em up and you've got a natural forest. Unlike nature, when humans plant forests, it's only pines - down to the cost/return factor again unfortunately. :( :( :(

A question - on your earlier photos, there were what looked like very handy blue drawing pins holding the track in place - what are they and will they stay put or be removed when you ballast ? I'm pinning my track but would prefer something temporary (that trains could pass over) until I get to the ballasting stage.

Petermac

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I use Peco track pins or any small nails/tacks that come to hand, just don't hammer them right down.

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Marty i think your trees are ace,agree about the trunk , :D but really good

Marty
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Thanks for the kind comments guys.
I think I'll dig out an N scale person and stand them next to the trees to give me a better perspective of size and trunk thickness and then work from there.

Bob, before I started I printed off a couple of pages from the British Trees website and TRIED to use the pictures as a guide :!: :!: :( Very useful pictures, more care needed to get the species look-a-likes. :lol: :lol: :lol: More fun.

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Petermac

I use small screws to hold my track temporarily in position. This allows me to loosen the screws, adjust the track and retighten to refine the alignment, or indeed to remove the screw, realign and then put the screw in somewhere else.

The screws also allow me to adjust for the height of the track easily too, a twist down to lower and backing off on the screw to allow the cork underneath to bounce back and raise the railhead.

I will ballast around the screws and then once glue has dried, holding the track in place, remove the screws and fill the holes with ballast. That is going to add another dimension to the ballasting process but I think that it is worth it.

I've only read about this method, never done the ballasting part before but so far so good.

Drawbacks?, well in N gauge I have to make sure that the screw head doesn't cause a short circuit between the back to back of the loco wheels or sit too close to a rail and cause a derailment.

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Tree 3 - Thicker trunk and Mark II foilage

Well... half a can of hairspray later I reckon this one might be a young Oak.

The "bark mix" was thickened up with a bit more polyfiller and another 10 or so more coats were painted onto the trunk over a couple of days.

The trunk was painted grey, black, brown and then dusted with brown and yellow pastel dust.

The base foilage is Heki "Dark Green Foilage" glued to the branches with PVA and hairspray.
A light sprinkle of Woodland Scenics "Fine Burnt Grass scatter" was added from above. Then more hairspray and....
A light dusting of ground brown and yellow pastel on top of that... held in place with... yup, more hairspray.

The figure is from Noch. Being a European manufacturer I assume that he is at 1:160 rather than the UK 1:148, the difference for a 6ft man is about 1mm at scale... so he's vertically challenged but acceptable for reference.

Painting him is going to be painful!


I'm really pleased with it and am heading back to the model shop for a bigger bag of the Heki foilage :roll: :lol: :lol:

NEXT....

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Looks real to me Marty and having that geezer stand under the tree give's it more of a real feeling and the size of it. Well done.
Phill

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That's a keeper, Marty! What a beauty!!

Mike

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That tree is absolutely fantastic :!: :!: :D :D

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Marty

The thicker trunk makes all the difference. You now have a very realistic looking tree, excellent effort.

Bob(K)

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Marty - that's a brilliant tree. Looks like a real oak and, from the branch formations, not so young either !!

Another one to keep I feel. :wink: :wink:

Petermac

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Excellent result :!: Good on you :!: :!:
:idea: :idea: Please supply the address to which orders should be sent. :lol:

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Marty, what an improvement! Did you happen to take progressive photos? I think it would be interesting to see what each stage (phase) looks like, and what you had to do to improve it. Just a thought!

Wayne

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That's a wonderful tree Marty, so realistic. Maybe you could try fine, rusted wire wool instead of coconut firbre.

Keep them coming Marty, I guess most of us on here will be installing trees eventually and advice is very welcome.

Incidentally most people advise getting scent free hair laquer for obvious reasons but when I stand in front of the hair products shelves in the local supermarket I'm utterly bewildered. So does anyone know how long the scent lasts if it is used for glue like this? :? :? :?

Les

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Les wrote:So does anyone know how long the scent lasts if it is used for glue like this? :? :? :? Er...no, Les. I will ask SHMBO, and she will then want to know why :?: :!:

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Great, great tree and judging by the difference in size with the man not much above average prototype height, if above at all. Makes Barchester's trees look a bit sick. That's at least two of you doing this to me now. :cry: It's not fair. :roll: :wink:

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i use panten pro v ( for the layout ) it has no scent
but it does the job. :roll: :roll: :wink: :wink: :lol:

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My seeking hairspray advice from my senior management has produced the theory that the cheaper sprays have more scent, but that most of the smell disappears fairly quickly depending on the temperature. The warmer the more it lingers.

My theory: A human head is warm, a model tree is cold. Any spray should lose its odour pretty quickly. (But no, I'm not going to rigorously test this theory.)

Les
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Sorry guys I just can't stop laughing. The thought of fellas all over the world (lead by a clergyman) standing in supermarkets asking for Panten Pro V to spray on trees just cracks me up. Wonderful stuff. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Les

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:lol: :lol: :lol: It's a funny image. Deserves to be in a comedy show.


Marty can you give us the product number of that foliage? It looks a bit different from the Heki I've used. It almost has the look of the sea foam foliage, alhtough it could be my eyes :?
Thanks.
Again, that tree is VERY impressive.
Mike

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Les your a cracker,im still laughing, brilliant.
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: 8)

Marty
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Thanks guys, nothing is as motivating as praise from those whose skills you admire.

Jeff - Orders :oops: :oops: :shock: :!: :?: Hmmm, I wonder, I'm looking for a new occupation.
Lets see... parts cost me about AUD$10 and a hourly rate of say AUD$60/hour at about 4 hours for that one makes it worth.... AUD$250.... about 120 pounds sterling.... there could be some economies of scale with mass production but I can't see me giving up my day job :shock: :shock: :cry:

Wayne - I'll do a "how to" on the next one and post a thread in the Scenery section if no one objects?

Les - I thought of fine wire wool, I'll give it a go and see how it looks. The plastic/nylon scourers work pretty well although I need to perfect the technique.

Bob - Sorry Boss... but you started it :lol: :lol: :lol: and the "club" keeps me striving to raise my standards. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Hairspray - I bought the cheapest version I could find, just a home brand, I've read that they are the stickiest. It was certainly sticky...
... and I did feel a little odd purchasing it :?
Yes, it was scented and yes, I've been banished to the shed to do the spraying 'cause T says the pong goes right through the house :? :lol: :lol:
The scent does linger on but is fading gradually. It's not unpleasant and being sort of florally isn't too far out from being naturally forest smelling :?:

Mike - I think it is Heki Foilage dark-green H-1562.
Have a look here
http://www.eurorailhobbies.com/erh/eurorailhobbiesdetail.asp?pageid=&MN=13&stock=H-1562
I'll confirm and get back to you.

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Thanks Marty - I've used some of their stuff in the 1550's series [Heki Flor] as well as some loose material in the 1560's series. Heki make some great foliage.
Hoping to see more trees soon.


Mike

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MikeC

I picked up another pack of the Heki foliage today at the hobby shop. Foliage Artline Dark Green NR 1570.
It doesn't appear on the Heki website so maybe a discontinued line but it does look like the 1560 series foliage which is on their website.
At nearly AUD$8.00 for 200ml pack from my local hobby shop it's not cheap. I'll maybe get 3 or 4 trees from it.

I agree, the Heki foilage is very good.
How did you find the Heki Flor?
The foliage is on some kind of matting that has to be teased out isn't it?
I've avoided it so far because of that.
cheers

Les
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When I was at the St Albans exhibiton earlier in January, they were demonstrating tree making with results that looked very similar to yours Marty. For foliage they had taken a piece of upholsters foam, soaked it in a slightly watered down mix of green emulsion paint (colour to your taste) and then let the foam dry for a while (in this case three weeks). When it was dry they rubbed it across a cheese grater with the result that they had produced mounds of Heki type foliage very inexpensively. Interesting eh :?: :) :)

Les

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Yes Marty you have to tease it out, and lots of the granular bits will fall off when you do. Worth saving for loose scatter, of course, but once the foliage is glued on it benefits from having some additional loose stuff added on top.
Thanks for the product number.
The how-to will be good.
Les - that sounds like a fun technique.


Mike

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I'll look forward to your "How I did it" thread Marty - it will be interesting to see how it takes shape in each stage.

Must go - I've got to explain to the Police why I spent the afternoon hanging around the "feminine products" section of the supermarket !! When I explained I was looking for hair spray, he looked at my bald head in disbelief !! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Petermac

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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Thanks Les,
Sounds like it's worth a go.
The plastic/nylon scourers I've bought and which I used as the base foliage for the first two trees comes in both Dark green and yellow.
I treated the yellow version to the same watered down emulsion paint and let dry before teasing out and applying to the trunk.
The "upholsterers" foam would be the next step applied over the scourer I'd imagine.
Worth a try.

Mike - do you think the above process would produce something pretty close to the Heki Flok that you have used?

Petermac - should we have a whip round for bail money?

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Marty I honestly don't know, but you'd have to think it's in with a chance. The foliage mats are a little bit stretchy, and can easily be teased out into very thin pieces.
Looking at your tree, the method you used is the right way

Marty
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thanks Mike :oops: :oops:

I'm in the process of making a second one the same way for the "how i did it", just hope I can repeat the process :shock: :shock: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Tree 4 – Thicker trunk and Mark II foliage repeated.

Thought I’d better have another go to see that I could repeat the process and… I do like making trees.

Here is the twisted wire frame…


Now with bark mix applied to thicken the trunk and then painted with acrylics and dusted with ground coloured pastel.


The “ingredients” and tools that I’m using for applying the foilage.


Last time I sprayed with hairspray and then sprinkled the Heki foliage. By chance a couple of clumps attached themselves to the branches. These clumps formed the basis for the next layer to adhere to once the second hairspray/foliage round was commenced…. And so on. Gradually building up a series of layers of foliage.

This time I tried to pre-position some “key” foliage to act as an anchor for the subsequent applications. Using the white glue and a pair of tweezers I started from the bottom branches and worked up upwards.


About half way up the painstakingly fiddly approach with the tweezers had lost its entertainment value and the random hairspray, lots of hairspray, as I think I’ve mentioned before, was resorted to again.

Letting each layer dry before applying the next… you have to let it dry otherwise the pressure of the hairspray blows the still wet foliage off, how do I know this… the tree comes together.

A sprinkle of the burnt grass scatter and some more ground pastel dust over the top, another application of hairspray to hold it all together, including the undersides and….


Ok, I reckon I’ve got this type worked out.

Next…. A Conifer of some kind.

Here is the twisted wire frame...


How am I going to do the foilage on this one :shock: Any suggestions... :?:

phill
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Well Marty if i had a choice between your finished tree and a ready made shop one, i go for yours all the time.
Yours looks more realistic, first class job in my book, well done.
Phill

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Woodland Sceneics make what they call conifer foliage. I've used some, although at the time I wasn't trying for a conifer look. I just liked the colour.
lYou won't see any needles in it, and I guess it's debateable as to whether we would see any at the scales we model.
I have tried making conifers with the bottlebrush method: clumps of sisal rope fibres twisted into the wire trunk, and trimmed to shape. Probably I should've added some other scatter material over the top, because they sure didn't impress me as they were :?

Your bare conifer looks the goods, as does your finished tree. I hope you don't mind, but I can see a problem that I hate to bring to your attention, but I feel I should: if you keep making trees THAT good, you're going to be invaded by caterpillars.


Mike :D

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Wow Marty - that looks fantastic. I'm sure this thread will be "well used" by us all. Brilliant trees and very well described/photographed.

Thanks :wink: :wink:

Petermac

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Fantastic Marty. Having seen yours and MikeC's trees, I'm plucking up the courage to have a go, but don't hold your breath. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Les

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Don't forget that you said you would do us a How To in the Scenery section Marty. We can't have your tree method lost in the pages of your layout thread for future members.

Wayne Williams
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Marty, Nice accomplishment and I do like the trunk! OK, I like everything! :lol:
Is there a different glue that could be used to speed up the process? (and help the entertainment value) :shock:

Wayne

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Marty wrote:
Jeff - Orders :oops: :oops: :shock: :!: :?: Hmmm, I wonder, I'm looking for a new occupation.
Lets see... parts cost me about AUD$10 and a hourly rate of say AUD$60/hour at about 4 hours for that one makes it worth.... AUD$250.... about 120 pounds sterling.... there could be some economies of scale with mass production :shock: :cry:


At Ł120 a tree, I don't think you'll be unable to cope with the workload, Marty.
If you are inundated with orders, remember it was my idea, but I only charge 5% agent's fees :!: :!:

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Gwent Rail wrote:

At 3120 a tree, I don't think you'll be unable to cope with the workload, Marty.
If you are inundated with orders, remember it was my idea, but I only charge 5% agent's fees :!: :!:


As a Moderator Jeff, you swore (on Bob's buffer stop) to carry out your duties as a labour of love - i.e. for no reward save that of knowing you you do the work of the Fat controller !!! At least that's what he made me promise !!

Petermac

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Well done with that tree Marty,first class :D Im interested in how you'll do your conifer cos i need make some and not got a clue myself :oops: :lol: :lol:

Marty
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Thanks for the comments all.

Phil - a "first class" from the LM, gotta treasure that :wink:

Mike - I'll go and have a look at the Woodland scenic "conifer" again although I agree from a previous look that it's just the darker colour and not anything special in the "needle" department.
I too looked at the twisted wire and sisal option but wanted more control over the individual branches, the sisal just didn't do it for me.
Darn catapillers I hate the blighters, they get into everything by the thousands. More surface spray required. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Petermac and Bob - I've not forgotten the "how I did it" in the scenery section. Coming shortly.

Les - Time consuming, very theraputic but not difficult. Puff ball and commercially bought trees just don't cut the mustard for me so I reckon it's worth it.

Wayne - a different glue, brilliant, I do like this forum, I might give superglue a go, that should make the whole process a lot quicker when placing the "key" foilage.

Jeff - just 5% :shock: maybe as my UK agent :lol: :lol: :lol:

Sue - what type of conifer do you need? This first one I'm doing I'm trying to make a Larch.

Marty
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Tree 5 - a Larch [size=9](hopefully)

Why the Larch...

Well, in an effort to make the layout "feel" right I felt that trying to model the vegetation for the Teifi valley as closely as I could was the way to go.
I did a little research into the tree types in West Wales and the Larch was mentioned as a common type and I've seen a couple of them in some of the photos I've collected.

Last night I found some really good Larch photos on the web and made a subtle but important change to the shape of the branches, hopefully you can see the change when comparing the picture below with the original wire frame above.

My old "bark mix" had "gone off" and wouldn't stick to the branches so I ditched it and made up a new batch, gradually testing and adding the PVA until it started to stick to the single strands of wire that make up the individual limbs.

I'm not to worried about the little "blobs" of "bark mix" on the limbs, I reckon the foilage will hide them.



It needs a couple more coats yet just to hide the twisted wire on the trunk and make the branches strong enough to support the foilage.

Now, according to the photo's the foilage/needles droop from the branch :shock: A bit like the shaggy coat of Highland cattle. Getting that looking "right" is going to be a challenge :!:

I'm off to the hobby shop to have a look at what they've got.

Wayne Williams
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Marty, how about a prototype photo of the Larch, so we can see what you are trying to accomplish? I don't even know what a Larch is!

Drooping needles, All Right, a challenge coming up, now that's what I like!

Wayne

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Tree 5 - A Larch by jove :!: :!:

For those that are interested the below link will show you the prototype.
http://www.hort.wisc.edu/mastergardener/Features/woodies/larch/larch.htm

I tried to make mine like the second from left in the 4 Seasons picture.

I started with superglue on the lower branches and applying Heki grass with tweezers.
Thanks Wayne, the superglue was much better than the PVA but... applying the grass, tweezer load by tweezer load soon started using up the hours available. It is a good method if you "really" want to do a precise job but very time consuming...

So... you guessed it... back to the hair spray again. I sprinkled the grass from above and from the side and then while still wet used the force from the application of hair spray to orient the grass downwards (or at least that was the theory).

Anyway, here it is.


And here is a "mockup" of the Henllan Yard in late afternoon sunlight with a 2251 class 0-6-0 easing in to pick up the cattle wagons in the dock siding. In the background are all of the trees that I have made so far.



The dream is starting to become reality.

Back to finishing the track laying and wiring on the Henllan Station board.
The points to the aforementioned Cattle Dock siding are still to be wired up and the Green Grove Milk Factory siding needs to have the points laid and motors installed.

With all of the wiring under the Henllan station board practically complete I have been able to "test" trains from the Riverbank Siding around the track to Henllan Station and Yard.
However, as all the Henllan Station wiring is all just going to the one controller at the moment and the isolating sections haven't been wired in, only one loco can be in the station at a time. Rather frustrating.

Time for the controll panel and isolation.

Wayne Williams
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Marty, your Larch looks super. The only idea I can come up with to maybe make it look more realistic is, can you approach it from all around with a pair of scissors and trim off some of the leaves that seem to hang down (or up?)from the branch? If you look at the actual tree, (now I need to look at it again) there is an air gap, either above or below each branch, can't remember now which is was. Anyway trim away some of the green to create that gap. I may be barking up the wrong tree, :shock: :lol: but it might just help. Problem is if it don't, I didn't say this!!!! :shock: :roll: :lol: After what you have gone through to get this, I would be content to leave it alone if it was me, so if you try this, please do so at your own risk, as this is just a thought! :?

Wayne

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Here are three links to the various larch trees that grow from Europe to Japan.

European Larch.

Dunkeld Larch.

Japanese Larch.

Marty
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It does look a bit hairy doesn't it?

Thanks for the links Bob.

Wayne, I'll have a look and see if the scissors idea will work. In the meantime I'll have a think about how to apply the "needles" in a better way.

cheers

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Marty-i think all that you do seems to come out good,you've just got IT,the nack whatever you call it,but you have a natural flair definitely :D :D Yes i agree your Larch trees could do with a very slight prune. Then they would be perfect :D :D

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Well done Marty. Judging by google images it appears a very good likeness.
A slight pruning would help, I reckon, not that I've ever tried modelling a larch :lol:

Mike

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Short back and sides please

Well done Everyone and thanks, I think that the prune has made a big difference.


I trimmed quite a lot of it, keeping the scissors close above the top of the branches and then trimming the needles hanging from the branch above to give more of a gap.

Some areas near the top where less care was taken when sprinkling the grass originally were trimmed to remove the domed look that had resulted.
cheers

Marty
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Tree bases

Something else I've stumbled on, my previous trees have twisted wire roots splayed out to allow the tree to stand on it's own rather than having to poke the trunk into a chunk of polystyrene to hold it up.

The roots look a little odd but I had planned to cover them with plaster when placed on the layout and blend them into the ground.

The "bark mix" for the Larch was a bit runny to start off with and ran onto the paper sheet underneath the roots. I left it to dry thinking I would cut the paper off later and let subsequent coats add to the puddle as I went on.

In the end, as you can see in the above photo, I left the paper on and cut around the puddle. Fallen needles have stuck to the base and the overall effect is quite pleasing I think.

When it comes time to add it to the layout I'll still try and plaster up and over the base to blend it in but if not I'll cut it off.

The circular area of the base makes it much more stable when standing on it's own.

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Marty, when I first saw your tree bases, they reminded me of the Triffids.

The haircut on the Larch is bang on - this is one of many parts of the hobby that I will have to get to - busy laying track right now.

If Jeff is the UK agent, then I will be the Aussie agent - no commision but just a tree every so often.

Now to go back & read your topic from page 1.

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Marty, What a difference that hair cut has made! I finally took a breath after giving you that advice. :shock: :roll: Sure glad it worked! Now it looks much more realistic.

On a personal note, are you any where near that hurricane (cyclone?) that is approaching Australia?

Wayne

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Marty the tree has greatly improved after its short back and sides.

To be fair i did look like it needed it in your original photos as other members suggested. But really thats the good thing about the club/forum
you know you will get honest constructive appraisal.

Whats the term women use (A Bad Hair Day) the tree was suffering with before :lol: :lol:

cheers Brian.W

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Thats perfect now Marty :D :D Good idea about the base too,i'll refer back to this when i get round to more tree making

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Gwent Rail wrote:

At Ł120 a tree, I don't think you'll be unable to cope with the workload, Marty.
If you are inundated with orders, remember it was my idea, but I only charge 5% agent's fees :!: :!:


As a Moderator Jeff, you swore (on Bob's buffer stop) to carry out your duties as a labour of love - i.e. for no reward save that of knowing you you do the work of the Fat controller !!! At least that's what he made me promise !!

Petermac

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Somehow the above post has been credited to me.
Just in case you are wondering, Petermac wrote it and when I corrected an error in my quote it gave me the credit for the lot :!:

Marty
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Thanks for confirmation and comments all.
I'll do another Larch in a while to repeat the process and see if I can make it a faster process.

Cyclone Nicholas
Currently passing across the coast some 1100 km's or so to the north of Perth. It's been downgraded to category 1 and while that still has destructive winds up to 120km/hr should do little damage to the coastal community of Coral Bay that it will cross near.

The resultant low will dump a lot of rain into the interior desert and maybe even flood some of the goldfields roads in the centre of WA but the Perth forecast for the next 6 days is fine with temps in the mid 30's.

Sometimes the rains from the cyclones reach as far as Perth and once in a blue moon we will get one that wanders down as far as the city... I think the last one was 1982.

Of more threat to us here are the winter "tornados" or wind shears that howl in from the sea and rip the roofs of houses for a strip 400m wide by 20 kms long. They are pretty rare too but more common to Perth than Cyclone impact.

The North west coast of Western Australia gets 3 - 6 cyclones a year. Playing havoc with the mining and oil and gas industries based up there.

Les
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Marty wrote flood some of the goldfields

I've just read a book called Rivers of Gold :lol: :lol:

Anyway take care Marty and also make sure the layout is well protected.

Let us know if Cyclone Phillip ever hits town :lol: :lol: :lol:

Les

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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

phill
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Marty wrote Let us know if Cyclone Phillip ever hits town :lol: :lol: :lol:

Les


Never be any where near honest :D :D

Seriously thou take care and be safe.
Phill

Marty
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Henllan Station and Green Grove Control Panel - under construction

Enough of trees for a while...

As part of the Henllan Station development, work has progressed on the control panel for the station, yard and Green Grove milk factory.

So far the box has been made up, front panel fitted and rotary switches mounted (a few still need cutting to size and knobs).


The front panel is hinged to allow easy access to the wiring.


The whole thing is designed to be demountable by taking out a couple of screws and disconnecting a couple of D plugs for the electrics.... which still have to be wired up yet...

The layout facia fits in around the back of the control panel box and once the box has been varnished should look OK.

Here is the current plan for the Henllan Station diagram and block controls.
Once I'm happy with it I've got to work out how to stick it to the front panel.
Maybe laminate and then glue or just varnish over the paper.


Suggestions and comments welcome as always.

cheers

petermacUK
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It looks far, far too complicated for me Marty !!!! :? :?

What is the panal made out of - at first, I thought it was aluminium but when I saw it "open" it looks too thick. An impressive bit of wizardry ! :wink: :wink:

Petermac

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First class panel work there Marty it will look extremely proffesional when
it is finished.
Where do the names come from around the controller knobs they are obviously welsh names.

The first name in the list is actually a slang term here in the Uk for something else than a name i dont know if you knew that :lol: :lol:

cheers Brian.W

Marty
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Just a bit of 3mm masonite Petermac, with the shiny side out.

I've never built one before so I'm hoping I haven't bitten off more than I can chew :!: :!: So far so good.

Marty
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Hi Brian.W

The names are the real names of the engine drivers on the branch, I thought it more in keeping with the atmosphere I'm trying to create rather than using Cab A, Cab B, Cab C, etc for the proposed individual controllers.

There will be just two controllers to start with, just John and Fred, but 3 would easily work with the layout plan and maybe 4. The rotary switches have 6 poles and with one for off, I thought I may as well name the others.

Ben Thomas is John Thomas' son, who followed the normal path of engine cleaner, fireman and then driver.

I rather like the thought off being able to say to visitors, " You can be John Thomas tonight" :wink: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

The GWR Journal article I'm using to base the layout on is a mine of information.

georgejacksongenius
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Can't wait to see this layout develop....then again,I'm biased towards N gauge and the GWR! It must be hard being on the other side of the world when it comes to getting new stock,or books,etc on Gods Wonderful Railway.If I can be any help,just give us a shout...I read your plea for Toad brake vans...did you manage to get any???

Regards,John(georgejacksongenius)

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Marty, looking at your panel & diagram - very well laid out but..
what happens if John Thomas has power on via the controller for the South Bank & Fred Jones was using Yard, left a loco sitting there & then Yard is switched to Off so passing thru John Thomas position on the rotary with power on, would not the loco in Yard now move a bit as well as any loco in South Bank? ( I have seen that happen on a layout that one of my friends had - he used that principle & quite often, locos that was supposed to be stopped, moved enough to recouple to wagons when they had just been un-coupled.)
It could get worse if all the first 4 controllers were powered up on sections & Ben Thomas decides to swich off from the Yard & having to pass 4 powered controllers to get to Off.

Is it physically possible for 5 operators to work at the same time in Henllan? If so, then this is when DCC comes into its own.
Yes under analogue, it can be wired to prevent any controller accidentally driving another loco but it does take a fair bit of switching for more than 2 operators at the same time. Perhaps the easiest way is to have rotary set up like :-
Off, John , Off, Fred, Off, Tommy, Dia, Off, Ben, Off - a 10 position rotary that would solve some problems.

Food for thought .

Marty
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Ooh, well spotted Sol.... I'll have to think about that one and do some testing :lol:

The control panel isn't wired up yet, the whole Henllan layout is running off the one controller at the moment so there is room for alterations.

Sections A, B and C will be isolation switches to allow multiple engines to be stored in the Yard so as long as the loco is there the momentary passing contact of the rotary switch won't affect them.

Hmmm, it would be theoretically possible for all 5 controllers to be operating different sections of Henllan at one time... but very unlikely I would have thought.

I guess the easiest option would be to alert the drivers to the problem and ask them to check that no other movement is taking place in Henllan before switching to Off but that wouldn't stand up to the stingent safety standards of the GWR rule books so...

... having 5 controllers at once on this layout is fairly unlikely and certainly unrealistic, room for the bodies is an issue too, 3 is a squeeze in the space between the layout and the workbench.
OK, 3 is more likely so I could set up the rotary switches...
Off, John, Off, Fred, Off, Tommy.

This would still mean that changing from Tommy to John must pass through Fred... still not safe really.

An isolation switch on/off between the rotary controller and the track feed would solve the problem. Remove the off position from the Rotary Switch altogether to avoid confusion.

The procedure would be to isolate the section before changing controllers and then, once selected, reactivate the section.

Is that feasible?

Marty
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GJG

Oh good, N gauge AND GWR, I thought you sounded a nice bloke :lol:

To quote "I have a dream"... and slowly but surely I'm progessing forwards [size=9](with the occasional backwards step I must admit)

Online ordering is suprisingly good, Hattons of Liverpool are wonderful, the fastest delivery time has been 6 days. There prices are very competitive too.

My parter used to be an "Information Specialist" (Librarian) with a keen ability to locate weird and wonderful reference material from anywhere around the world and will still do so for me in return for trinkets and dinners :wink: :lol: :lol:

So overall it's not too bad, however, I've had no luck so far getting a couple more GWR Toads :cry: Not that I've tried very hard as they won't be needed for a while yet.

cheers

Sol
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Marty, lets have a few more thinks.

How many stations are you planning & how many operators do you anticipate that will be on the layout at the same time?
Under normal circumstances, how many people will be operating?

If as you say, 3 bodies could fit in with a squeeze, could they move around easily passing each other as they drive a loco from one end to the other?
If not, then it is back to two bodies/ 2 cabs in the same operating space & that makes it electrically easy - centre off Toggles.

Putting an additional isolating switch in conjunction with each rotary takes up more space on panels & introduces another un-necesary action. I would not recommend that method.

On my previous layout, while I had 4 stations & 6 controllers, I normally had 4 people but we did not move between stations - we stayed in the same spot - no room to pass each other easily. The 2 main stations had 2 cabs each & it was possible to drive 2 trains at the same time by the one operator.
To go to the next station, I used a linking circuit which connected a common track betwen the 2 stations with a toggle switch that joined the common to say your South Bank section & the distant station operator used his toggle to connect from the same commion track to his input station track & one controller at the recieving station drove the train .

I think any control system to be used has to take into account on how the layout will be operated before attempting to finalise the control method otherwise one could keep rebuilding panels.

Hope this confuses you more. :lol:

Marty
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Ah, now you are asking me to make my brain hurt :lol: :lol: :lol:

OK, I'll poddle off to lunch and have a think about it

[size=9]... some time later...

In all that I have read about the Newcastle Emlyn Branch, and it's not a lot, I've only ever heard of two trains on the branch at the same time.

With the "addition" of the Green Grove Milk Factory and the milk tanker and van traffic to and from there I reckon that makes 3 possible trains in operation at any one time without clogging the branch up with traffic jams.

Here's the layout plan again for reference.


3 operators with walkaround throttles with 1.5m leads would be able operate the layout at once in the space around the layout but 2 would be more comfortable.

Normal operation will be one operator.

The Pencader fiddleyard is going to be replaced by a cassette system.

The plan was to have:
1) one operators control panel at the Henllan Station/Green Grove Milk Factory position and
2) one operators control panel at the Newcastle Emlyn Station/Riverbank sidings position.

At Newcastle Emlyn shunting of the yard using the engine shed road as a head shunt happended independently of passenger traffic to the station.

The original timetable calls for about 6 passenger movements per day up and down the branch and two pickup goods turns, one morning and one afternoon.

Specials include cattle/livestock trains 3 times a week, sometimes 2 or more on market day, football/fair day specials and the occasional troop train. (the 21st Artillery regiment base being nearby. AA guns mostly)

Throw in 2 milk trains per day and it gets pretty busy as far as the timetable goes.

I'll have to do a mock up to see how it will work.

Any thoughts.

Sol
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Marty, I will get back to you - I have printed the plan & your comments out & have a think about it in this heat - currently 39.2C.

Marty
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Ouch, 22.5 deg C in Perth with a 35km/hr SW cold front coming through, hang in there mate, a cool change is on it's way :lol:

Sol
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Next Tuesday planned 39C, Wednesday 31C.

Working on my reply to you with a drawing as well.

Marty
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Very kind of you, looking forward to it.

Sol
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OK, Marty, here we go.

My ideas for what they are worth;
Henllan has 2 cabs, which not only controls Henllan & the Milk Factory but also the cassette fiddle yard & Riverbank Siding together with the continuous run.

Newcastle Emlyn (NE) has 2 cabs as well.

My drawing below has the 4 cabs labelled A-D.

Suggestion is that part of the track between Henllan & NE - the bit between the two bridges be classified as the Link section - it is switchable to both stations.
The drawing has 2 toggles at each station - one is the Link toggle & the other is what selects the cab at station for that section of station trackage.
Under normal operation, each station can have 2 operators & with the cab toggles, either cab can drive trains anywhere with in the nominal station limits.
Assume a train to go from Station A to B; A sets all points & signals & cab switches to cab B then the Link toggle: now do not use Cab B at Station A.

Station B sets whatever points & signals, selects the Cab C or D for the incoming track, then the Link Toggle - this now joins Cab C or D right back to Station A to allow Station B to drive the train towards them.

In the meantime Station A using Cab A can drive another loco anywhere except where Cab B is switched to.

As soon as the train enters the Link section, Station A can restore the Link toggle to normal now removing any linking & Station A can continue on doing it likes best.

At Station B, as soon as the incoming loco has cleared the Link section, they too can restore the Link toggle.

If you are by yourself, switching all cabs to A & C at both stations plus the 2 Link toggles allows you to operate with either Cab A or C anywhere ( you could use cabs B & C or B & D - take your pick).
The main proviso is that the hand controllers have a centre-off toggle switch for direction, otherwise if Cab A is set to left & Cab C to the right, there will be a conflict of output voltage & trains may not move.
As a one-man operator going from station to station, the above works well but if you do not want to hand over to another operator when 2 or more are present, then your rotary switch plus additional isolate switch is what maybe needed. If you could obtain the gang switch like car radios had - push a button & the other in-button pops out only allowing one button at the time, this would be perfect - the drawback is the space required.

As I posted earlier, once a station has more than 2 controllers having access, it creates a lot of wiring & DCC is then ideal for this method of operation.
That is one reason why I converted, not so much the wiring & relays, etc but to make it simpler for the operators - less switches to get confused with especially at the 4 track double junction crossovers - 8 points & 4 diamonds.

If you need anymore info, you can either e-mail me at sol@aandr.com.au or ring me on 08 8522 2536.


Marty
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Thanks very much Sol,

I've read through twice and I think I'd better take it home and think about it some more while referring to your drawing :oops: :roll: :lol: :lol:

The concept of passing off trains to the other station operator, quite like signal boxes offering and accepting trains, is a good one.

More soon...

OK, I've just read it for a third time and I've got you and like it. I was wondering how I was going to make the "link"... as it were.

I think I'm still going to use the rotary switches since I've spent the money for them and mounted them, but in two cab mode... Cab A, off, Cab B.

Now, would you still do the same "passing control over to the next box" in DCC mode or would the operator just drive the whole way from Newcastle Emlyn to the Pencader end?

Sol
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Marty, yes use the rotary in place of the cab toggles. All you will need extra is the Link toggle on each panel.

Even under DCC, you can still pass it on but of course do not need any switching or drive it all the way as with most good DCC units, once the train has started, you can unplug the controller & move to the next station while the train is still chugging between them. I am referining to Lenz, NCE. Gaugemaster.Digitac\x type contollers - not Bachmann, ESU or Hornby console units.

On a previous layout I was involved with, we made up a train at a station, the Fat Contoller at the main console set the main links , we moved to the distant station & drove the train towards us, shunted & then we moved agin & drove it towards us again. The wiring was such that I could stay at one station & drive the train thru every station ( 9 of ) on the huge 35 x12ft - 3 level layout. This used linking principles.

georgejacksongenius
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Marty,tried to reply to your recent e-mail,but for some reason it wouldn't send.
I'll keep my eyes peeled for you,mate.I attend a lot of shows over here,and 2nd hand toads come up quite regularly,so I''ll see what I can do.

Cheers, John.B.(georgejacksongenius)

Marty
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I got you PM thanks John, appreciate your efforts.

cheers
Marty

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Green Grove Milk Factory Siding

Time for an update on progress...

Most of the work has gone on under the board wiring in the track sections and fitting point motors. Some of which are a bit sticky and will probably need tweaking. Did most of them before reading the tutorials some of you have done on the forum.

I'd like to make it clear to anyone new to installing point motors under the baseboard using the extension bar to throw the point tie bar... you really should read the tutorials and get the alignment as accurate as possible.

The control panel is on hold at the moment after discussions in the thread above while further testing and thinking goes on to determine the best way to wire up the layout for DC operations. Not a lot of thinking yet, sorry Sol, as my mind is taken up with the diorama.

The Green Grove Milk Factory sidings are now, finally, in place and being used with milk tankers, shown below, in the future loading dock.



Cattle wagons are in the cattle loading dock in the yard on the down side of Henllan station and the Auto-coach is negotiating the cross over in the station itself.

Two types of readily available cleaning cloths have been purchased from the local supermarket and, having had their stitching cut, have been spread out to see how effective they might be as grass on the layout.

Both types will need re-colouring of course but the “grass” height looks OK to me and once cut up and mixed and matched should do the job nicely.

The yellow version is a “home brand” and the individual bristles are shedding like leaves before a storm. Some experimentation is required to see how they can best be used. Either painted and sprayed with hairspray/fixative or used like medical lint, glued to the scenery and the backing ripped off.

The Pentrecourt Halt diorama is now in full production and can be found in the diorama section.

Until the Halt is completed, work on the layout itself will take a back seat. It won’t stop altogether but the diorama will be used to trial some scenic modeling skills that I have never used.

Next on the layout is the line from Henllan to Pencader via the Halt (a mark two version once the diorama is completed), mainly because the Henllan station yard throat as it currently is doesn’t provide enough room to shunt properly.

The other layout task high on the list is to complete the Henllan control panel, including the point levers so that I can do the shunting sitting down. Uncoupling still has to be done manually but at least changing points will be done without getting off the stool all the time.

Number One Son dropped by out of the blue last Sunday afternoon, I tasked him to shunt the local goods from the main line into the yard and the milk tanks from the goods into the factory siding.

Couldn’t get him off. Once shunted as directed, the train was re-assembled in the yard loop, the engine re-attached and with a cheery wave he set off for Riverbank sidings.

That’s my boy.

georgejacksongenius
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Just admiring the prototype picture at the beginning of your thread again,and I've noticed a mistake!
It can't be the 30's,cos its a British Rail scene.The 14xx has its number on the smokebox door,which only happened after nationalisation.Also,when these locos originally appeared in the 30's,they were numbered 48xx.The autocoach is also not chocolate and cream!!!
On the plus side,though,the layout is looking awesome....and its good to hear your son appears to have caught the bug.looking forward also to seeing that diarama develop.
Cheers,John.B.

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Marty,
I've had problems with the Dapol 0-4-2Ts on gradients myself,and they're not the greatest at pulling anything too long,even on the flat! I've also heard of other people having probs with the dapol prairies,but I've not experienced any,and I've got 3 of them.
I was wondering if some of the problems stem from the light-weight nature of the locos,esp.round the pony wheels.Maybe adding some weight to the locos could be the answer?
Farish locos aren't as good looking as the Dapol stuff,but they're heavier and more reliable.
I've noticed that in N gauge,it seems to be the more lightweight locos that derail,jump points,and generally don't give good tractive power.If you can add weight,and get all the wheels down firmly on the track,these events should be less of a problem (I think!)
Cheers,John.B.

Marty
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I reckon you're right John, post nationalisation for sure and I'll check to see if I can get a better date before updating the caption.

At some stage I'm going to gather the courage to wriggle the body of one of my Dapol 0-4-2 tanks and see about adding some more weight.

I've had the same problems with the Prairies too, the haul more than the 14XX's but still slip on my 1:45 grades. Not suprising really!

Little to report in the last week, we went away for the Easter Weekend and up until then I was flat out in the shops selling Easter Eggs.

I created a 3D CAD model of my diorama base last night to see if that would help me with some of the planning.

Haven't even done any "testing" on the layout in the last week.
cheers

Marty
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Just updated the caption on the "inspiration" picture on page one.
Thanks GJG
cheers

georgejacksongenius
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Well Marty.......Here I am again,the "Inner voice" of your concience,making you feel guilty.What's been happening on Newcastle Emlyn?
   We needs our updates! And what about the Ixion 'Manor'?
Are you holding out on us??? Its been far too quiet!!!
   Come on,now.....:mutley:twisted::twisted::twisted:

Cheers,John.B.

P.S.Hope you've had a lovely Christmas,and a nice break in NZ.

Marty
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I've taken an RDO today (and yes Tracy does know about it) and am working on the Newcastle Emlyn layout at last.

I've finally bitten the bullet and decided that I can reduce the severity of the grades that my locos stuggle with.

Easy to say in one sentence. sheesh, the reality is vastly different.

Progress photos and discussions shortly, I'm off to Bunnings to get some more blue wire as I've run out.

The Ixion Manor (as discussed elsewhere) was out of scale due to a manufacturing fault. The one delivered was beautiful... until it fell off the layout and destroyed the cab. When Ixion get the new one sorted out and delivered photos will be posted.

The Pentrecourt diorama is now just waiting for a thin layer of resin to be poured into the rivers but the manufacturer of the resin recommends that it NOT be used in temperatures below 23 deg C.
My room temperature is and has been for weeks around 16 deg C, so I think I'll wait for spring before attempting it. I'd hate to b##g*r it up.

The Three Rivers experiment is complete and just needs the final photos and writeup done.

Under construction sections in the Module standards need completing.

My module needs to be started.

So much to do... so little time.

Ah well... at least I'm getting some modelling done.

 

Last edited on Fri Jul 17th, 2009 12:58 am by Marty

MikeC
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Photos or no photos, this is more like it! :lol:

Your river will be worth the wait.

Mike

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hi marty

glad to see you at it again;-)

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Good lad Marty!!! This is going to be worth waiting for,I just know it is.Lots of pictures too,please!!!:twisted::lol::lol::lol:

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Great to see you back on the main layout Marty

cheers Brian

Marty
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Henllan Station

Further inspiration.

 

The layout has been languishing while the diorama, Three Rivers test and Module standards were being worked on.

 

For ages the flat station board at Henllan looked like this…

 

 

Mother, bless her heart, was kind enough to surf the web with me for my birthday in May and purchase a few “presents” that found their way onto the layout.

 

The Hellan station area, looking from the Pencader end, has had some temporary buildings added to speed things along. Scratchbuilt buildings are planned eventually.
The Goods Shed, Signal Box, Lockup Hut and Chapel from the Hornby Lyddle End range. The Green Grove Milk Factory is being developed to on the right with a Kestrel kit under construction and a Metcalfe factory card kit behind, also under construction.




 

Close up of the goods shed and signal box.

 

 

Green Grove Milk Factory area.

 

 

All of the above, including rolling stock was packed away this last weekend, the station board lifted and the branchline re-aligned to reduce the climb from the lower level to the higher one.

 

Photos tomorrow I hope, it was too wet today to bring the camera into work on the push bike.

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Ahah! Now you're talking! I like them all, but especially the milk factory [I thought that was cows] and the lovely little tankers alongside. Looking forward to seeing it weathered, as you are too, no doubt. Trees and grass up the left look good too. I like the upside-down print too :lol:

Mike

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Thanks Mike.

I had to put the print upside down to get the station orientation right :roll: 

Looking forward to making some progress now although the focus is going to be on getting the wiring and control panel for Henllen sorted in the short term.

The grass is that "furry dishcloth" stuff again. Temporary just get the feel of the layout.

Onwards...

 

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MikeC I like the upside-down print too :lol:

Mike


:mutley I noticed that as well, thought is was because you are on the other side of the world, ie upside down :mutley

Any photos of the new work Marty

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There are some nice buildings there, Marty.  Are they kits?  Love the screws holding the track down.  No doubt they come out after ballasting? :thumbs

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Alan wrote:

Any photos of the new work Marty
________________________

Tomorrow hopefully Alan, or the day after... got another one of those 100+ km/h cold fronts coming in tonight.

I patched a leaky roof for a grandmother last night but SES has been pretty quite over the last couple of weeks thankfully. Tomorrow MIGHT be different.

Soon as I can.

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MaxSouthOz wrote: There are some nice buildings there, Marty.  Are they kits?  Love the screws holding the track down.  No doubt they come out after ballasting? :thumbs

The factory buildings are kits Max, the front one is a Kestrel plastic kit and hiding behind that is a Metcalfe card kit.

I like using the screws, it makes track adjustment easy, just ease off on the tension, re align, re-tension.

The screw heads are small enough not to interfere with the wheel flanges and, yes,  once the ballast is dry they are removed and the holes filled with a little dob of ballast and glue.

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Yes.  I think it's a great idea.  The slots between the ties will work well for side adjustment.  Pan heads might be even better. :thumbs

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Marty wrote:I like using the screws, it makes track adjustment easy, just ease off on the tension, re align, re-tension.  The screw heads are small enough not to interfere with the wheel flanges and, yes,  once the ballast is dry they are removed and the holes filled with a little dob of ballast and glue.
That's an execellent idea Marty - it's filed away for future reference :thumbs

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Can't remember where I got the idea from... another modeller obviously, from a magazine I think.

I adopted the method at the time and haven't looked back since.

Glad it helps, what goes around, comes around. :lol:

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MaxSouthOz wrote:  Pan heads might be even better. :thumbs


Sorry Max,

Pan heads :question EDIT: it's OK, I googled it.

Probably would be better then the counter sunk ones, gets the pressure down on the top of the sleepers and less likely to spread them apart.

neat idea, I'll give 'em a go when I finally get around to the Newcastle Emlyn station.

Last edited on Mon Jul 20th, 2009 05:10 am by Marty

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good to see the layout again,nearly forgot you had one!!

the rtr buildings look ok, i still think of the old ones,really must move
with the times. 

:sad::???::roll::cool:

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No wurries, cobber. :thumbs

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owen69 wrote: the rtr buildings look ok,


For N scale mass produced RTR they aren't too bad at all Owen.

They will make good place holders for the time being.

The kits have better detail and as long as you can paint a straight line in N scale should come out better :roll:

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Marty

Nice to see the buildings positioned on the layout looks like you engine shed is a scratchbuild looking forward to regular updates again now Marty

Are those N gauge uncoupling magnets in the track ?

I am looking for  a wicked way to fire some  points on the narrow gauge either way

magnets and reed switches are one thing i could use are they available wordwide?

cheers Brian

 

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Pretty good detail on those buildings Marty, especially for N gauge, will you use an airbrush to paint them with? I have a habit of being a bit heavy handed with the brush and a lot of the detail gets gobbled up :???:

Am saving up for an airbrush and compressor, but that will be next year:sad:

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Yeeeessssss!!!
Some nice shots there,Marty.Are you going to put your buildings on a cork base to bring them up to the same level as your track?
Its just that the cork looks so thick...I bet it makes for some nice quiet running though!!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Marty,
Excellent work, really like the station area.

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henryparrot wrote: Marty

Are those N gauge uncoupling magnets in the track ?

I am looking for  a wicked way to fire some  points on the narrow gauge either way magnets and reed switches are one thing i could use are they available wordwide?


Screws to hold the track down Brian, magnets will come later. Got to work out which coupling system I'm going to use first.

It's a global village these days, unless the govt has banned the import we can get most electrical bits and pieces.

I'm looking forward to playing with leds, reed switches, relays, etc, etc once I get all the track down and working satisfactorily.

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Lawrence wrote: Pretty good detail on those buildings Marty, especially for N gauge, will you use an airbrush to paint them with? I have a habit of being a bit heavy handed with the brush and a lot of the detail gets gobbled up :???:

Am saving up for an airbrush and compressor, but that will be next year:sad:


Hi Lawrence,

An airbrush is on my wish list too. One for me and one for No. 2 son. I promised him one for his birthday.

Until then I think that a light wash of acrylics or gouche water colours via a brush and then a dusting of pastels will make a big difference to those Lyddle End buildings.

Just got to have the paitence to use thin layers of paint as I too have been guilty of overloading my brush and wiping out too much detail.

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georgejacksongenius wrote: re you going to put your buildings on a cork base to bring them up to the same level as your track?
Its just that the cork looks so thick...I bet it makes for some nice quiet running though!!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

Hi John,
Definitely going to raise the rest of the yard and station area up to the level of the top of the sleepers. Looks odd as it is for sure.
I found some cork tiles (not the bathroom ones :roll:) hiding under a shelf at Bunnings (our B&Q) hardware store. Same thickness and construction as the roadbed cork I've used.
The tiles will be cut to fit between the track and then either polyfiller or waterputty will be added to bring the level up to the sleeper tops.
When I do the Newcastle Emlyn Station the cork tiles will go down first before the track so I don't have to muck around filling in the gaps.

It's still a little "hollow" when running over the Henllan station board, despite the cork roadbed. The quietest running is along the laminated mdf spline sub-road beds.

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IE 201 wrote: Marty,
Excellent work, really like the station area.




Thanks Tom,

Just copied the prototype station layout, makes life easier as long as you can compress the bits you need into the space that you have.

Last edited on Tue Jul 21st, 2009 12:16 am by Marty

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All the buildings and rolling stock have been packed away and the Henllan Station board removed.

 

L-girder construction and modifying a gradient, bank or slope.

 

After 12 – 18 months of “testing” and hoping that Tim’s axe really wouldn’t be needed, the inability of the Dapol 14XX class tank engines to haul more than 1 coach or 4 wagons up the gradients between the upper and lower levels on the layout convinced me that modifications were required. I just wouldn’t be happy otherwise.

 

The 14XX 0-4-2 tank engines were the primary motive power on the branch, one being on shed permanently at the Newcastle Emlyn Terminus. They were restricted as to how many wagons they were allowed to have in a train but it’s somewhere around 14, not 4.

 

There was no point going forwards with the layout until the gradients had been reduced to the absolute minimum.

Making the layout flatter and, eventually, taking the body shell off the engines and adding some weight, should allow something more prototypical in train lengths.

 

The beauty of the L-girder system is that adjustments can be made relatively easily.

Undo the screws of the risers under the sub-roadbed, adjust to the height required, clamp, re-screw… easy… brother!!!!

 

The overpasses dictated the grade. Minimum clearance needed to be maintained. In the photo below the overpass near the Altycefan Woolen mills shows how a small notch had been removed under the laminated mdf spline sub-roadbed to allow rolling stock to pass underneath.
There was at least 10mm to be gained there by cutting out up to the pencil mark.


 

 

The laminated mdf spline is immensely strong, (I can sit on an un-notched section – all 85kg of me).
Below the underpass clearance has been increased and the track below can now be raised up.


 

 

Below is a picture of most of the layout before the gradients were reduced. Each of the risers highlighted in red had to be unscrewed, adjusted, clamped and re-screwed. With the occasional pause to re-solder wiring loosened during the modifications, no wonder it took me all weekend.



 

The other overpass to the south of Henllan station marked but before cutting. Made a real bodge of this one but had to lean over the layout with the dremel power tool while standing on my foot stool. The bridgework will cover the mess.



 

The clearance available was measured against this Atlas track cleaning car which, with it’s roof mounted on/off switches and 1:160th scale is the tallest bit of rolling stock that I have. This photo is prior to raising the track.



... and this photo is after the track has been raised.



 

Finally, another overall view, the Henllan station board has been removed, showing the risers that have been modified. The gradient at the rear of the layout is probably the best to compare before and after views but other than a general flattening it’s a bit hard to see the difference.



 

Did it make a difference… yes it did. Thankfully.

 

A 14xx with one coach and 4 milk tankers with stiff wheels was able to make it around the loop from top to bottom.

 

Progress I reckon.

 

Next…

 

The Henllan station board and control panel… wiring, switches and a couple of sticky points/turnouts need realigning.


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Been a busy boy have we Marty?

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Sol wrote: Been a busy boy have we Marty?
All the aches and pains on Monday morning seemed to confirm it Sol, what with being under, on and through the benchwork most of the weekend. :thumbs

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know that feeling to well Marty,but it all melts away when things run
smooooth again...

:doublethumb:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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I think we should start a thread on back pain, joint pain and general model rail injuries. I feel the same some Mondays Marty, I feel sorry for some of the old timers on the forum like Phil.

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That's a lot of work in one weekend Marty

And it looks good, some very tight curves you have, but I guess that's N gauge for you, will you fill in the holes with light weight hills etc ?

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Matt wrote: I feel sorry for some of the old timers on the forum like Phil.

He'll be right mate, he's GWR thru and thru. Built to last :mutley:pedal

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Alan wrote: That's a lot of work in one weekend Marty

Re-inspired by the new buildings Alan, and Adrian Vaughan's "Oxford - the Heart of the GWR" which I picked up cheap at the last train show here in Perth.

I was a bit iffy about the layout and contemplated letting Tim's Axe of it's lead but I like the track plan and the concept so I will finish this layout. :brickwall

Alan wrote:
Some very tight curves you have, but I guess that's N gauge for you, will you fill in the holes with light weight hills etc ?

Minimum curve standard I've chosen for NE is 400mm/15.5" and so far the only curve that is less than that (the one in the centre of the overview photos) will be hidden in a tunnel under those light weight hills.  :shock: :thumbs:thumbs

Last edited on Tue Jul 21st, 2009 04:29 am by Marty

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Some great work there Marty.And it HAD to be done,or you would have never enjoyed operating it.The wiring board and control panel looks very complex.Looks like you'll soon be ready to begin some scenery now the probs with the inclines are resolved!!!
  Looking forward to developments!!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Great work Marty and can you tell me what your gradients are now?

I don't know why - and I'm ashamed to say it - but I've never seen your N.E. layout until now and having just had a glance at the first page I'm really impressed, particularly the track plan which looks very interesting; by the way, what is the width of your baseboard at each end?      (Funnily enough I've been working on mine for weeks and it is similar in concept, ie, L shaped, but not as large). 

Tomorrow, when I have a bit more time, I'm going to go through your whole posting on this and I'm looking forward to it very much.

Ken.

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Amazing progress, Marty! Sorry I haven't been following the thread with each step :oops:

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Marty I'm glad you've found some time to push on with the layout. I'm itching for you to get to the scenics [yeah, I know - join the club :lol:] because you're going to have a beautiful thing there.

Mike

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I said I'd read right through your thread Marty and have just done so; it took 55 minutes(!) but was well worth the time spent as I've gleaned such a lot of info from your trials and tribulations plus the various "how to's - and how not to's! - are very valuable to beginners in "N" like me.

I think your whole project is tremendous and I hope you'll find the time to make real progress on it - I guess your other two sidelines (the Halt and Water experiments) are responsible to some degree?;-)

Ken.

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:doublethumbNow that is really cool stuff, mate! Brill! Looking forward to seeing the next development. :cheers

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Henllan Station wiring

Work progressing steadily on wiring up the Henllan Station and approaches properly.

In a desperate effort to get trains running I originally wired all the tracks directly into the power bus to my one controller.
This meant that I could run a train but just one train at a time.
All the points have point motors below them but as yet weren't powered up and all switching is being done by hand.

As well as running a train it has allowed me to work on track alignment, joins and general testing of the layout and now that I've minimised the hill climbs time has come to move on.

The plan is to have Henllan Station operated by two controllers in DC Cab Control mode and wiring the Henllan control panel has started to achieve this.
The picture shows wiring for one cab complete. The red/red-white wire was a freebie and is a bit chunky, it might still be replaced it it causes problems opening and closing the control panel.


The front panel has been updated after kind and helpful comments from members of the forum in the past (I do remember guys, just takes a while to get there).
This version will have further work done to it and at this stage is just held loosely in place to prompt thoughts and development ideas.


The Henllan Station board is back on the layout again for some testing.
At this stage I can still only run one train at a time but I can park up to 3 others on the board and isolate them.
The GWR Diesel Railcar is parked in the goods loop while the Autocoach trundles by on the down road. You'll have to take my word for it as it's a still photo. Videos one day.


I cleared out my local hobby shop yesterday of the Peco on/off switches which are going to be used to set up isolated sections within the yard for further control of loco movements.
Going to have to scratchbuild the mounting frame for the PL22/26 levers as a couple more isolation sections have been added to the plan and the PECO mounts now wont hold all the switches that I need in the space allocated.
Hopefully get onto that this weekend.

Comments and suggests welcome as always.


Last edited on Fri Aug 14th, 2009 12:15 am by Marty

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Marty, I had scratchbuilt lever frames for the Peco switches in 9, 6 & 3 units.

this is the 3 unit - made from 3mm MDF  & PVAd together


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Thanks mate.

That's what I'm looking at.
What are the little black strips you have screwed into the lever frame box? More mdf?

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Peco PL28  Mounting Plate - can be used in the box style like I have built or in the actual panel on track diagram.



courtesy of KMRC - 6 per pack

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That's an impressive control panel Marty, a very neat job.

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Cheers.

Might try and make one without them.

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Janner wrote: That's an impressive control panel Marty, a very neat job.

Hmmm, wait until the wiring is finished John :shock: 

Spaghetti junction if I know me.

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It's a very neat panel, Marty.  The red/white should be OK by the look of it - you're not going to be opening and closing it very much, are you?

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Marty wrote: Cheers.

Might try and make one without them.


Marty, if you are using the Peco switches, on a home made frame, then you need thin material on the top  of about 1/16th (1.5MM) so the Peco switch will click into it.

 

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MaxSouthOz wrote: It's a very neat panel, Marty.  The red/white should be OK by the look of it - you're not going to be opening and closing it very much, are you?
Once it's all done, hopefully, No, it should stay closed.

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Sol wrote: Marty wrote: Cheers.

Might try and make one without them.

Marty, if you are using the Peco switches, on a home made frame, then you need thin material on the top  of about 1/16th (1.5MM) so the Peco switch will click into it.


OK, thanks for the heads up.
Going to take some precision cutting I'd imagine to get them all in line and square. Can be done, just got to take my time.

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Ken wrote: Great work Marty and can you tell me what your gradients are now?


Sorry Ken, I missed this.

Glad you had the chance to read through the development of the NE layout, warts and all. Hope it helps you with your efforts.

Looking forward to seeing a topic opened on you plans. Did you ever finish the quarry?

I don't now know what the gradients are exactly, I'll work it out and let you know. The tip I can tell you now, if you want to run the light dapol engines, is to forget gradients altogether... and if you must have them make them as shallow as you possibly can.

The heavy Farish loco's and the newer Bachman diesel railcar could manage the 1:40 or 1:35 that I used to have without too much trouble. I couldn't run 14 coaches but I could run 6 or 7.

I'm forging ahead with the layout now, work on the diorama and the Three rivers has made me a lot more confident in my abilities and it's full steam ahead... well, as much steam as life and Tracy will let me have anyway.

cheers

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rector wrote: Amazing progress, Marty! Sorry I haven't been following the thread with each step :oops:

No problems Tim, as long as you are infotained when you do pay a visit. ;-)

I'm champing at the bit to get into the scenery but know that there is no point until the track work is installed and working trouble free.

Onwards and upwards.

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Marty wrote: Ken wrote: Great work Marty and can you tell me what your gradients are now?


Sorry Ken, I missed this.

Glad you had the chance to read through the development of the NE layout, warts and all. Hope it helps you with your efforts.

Looking forward to seeing a topic opened on you plans. Did you ever finish the quarry?
..............................................


Thanks Marty and as I have a couple of Dapol locos I'll bear that in mind.

I had to put a temporary stop on my modelling as it was getting difficult with my broken wrist (which I did 10 months ago!) which I then made worse by lifting 5 x 40litre bags of bark chippings into and then out of a supermarket trolley - and you know how deep they are - then into my car boot and I think I must have opened up the broken bones a bit because it's been quite painful, although diminishing, ever since.   However, I am able to use it now for most things (although I've been concentrating on my Vibes playing as I have my first gig next Saturday - I'm probably bonkers as that really requires the ultimate in wrist movement but I think I'll be ok as I've been practising a lot) and I'll be getting back into finishing the Quarry very shortly.   In the meantime I've been trying to devise a track plan for the layout and I'll be posting this shortly as I require expert help with the wiring etc.

Incidentally that control panel of yours is marvellous!

Ken.

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Thanks Ken,

Good luck with the gig.

Looking forward to further developments from Okehampton. The quarry was coming along champion last time we saw it.

Always plenty of help with electrics on here too.

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Great progress with that control panel Marty.Looking VERY professional! Its going to be great to watch this all taking shape scenically knowing what you're capable of.I can't wait!!!;-)

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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I love it Marty.  How did you do the signalling panel?  Is it some sort of print out?

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georgejacksongenius wrote: Great progress with that control panel Marty.Looking VERY professional! Its going to be great to watch this all taking shape scenically knowing what you're capable of.I can't wait!!!;-)

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

Neither can I John but I'm having fun with the electrickery so it's not all bad.

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Christrerise wrote: I love it Marty.  How did you do the signalling panel?  Is it some sort of print out?
Yes Chris, drawn up in Microsoft Powerpoint and then printed to scale 1:1 on A3.
Eventually, when I'm happy I've got it close to right, it will be laminated and held in place with double sided sticky tape in the corners or varnished onto the wood.

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That is great Marty, although I still don't know how you did it!  Whenever I try drawing anything like that it just comes out shaky and a mess!

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Drawing pictures in Power point is a bit of a speciality of mine as a Draftsman/Cartographer.

Too start with you need the DRAW palette open from the TOOLS menu (I think).
That is where all the lines and shapes are.

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Henllan Control Panel
Improvising a mounting panel for Peco switches.

The original plan was to use the Peco mounting block for the switches and the wooden framework was built, months ago, accordingly.
But, to give a bit more flexibility in operating the Henllan station layout a couple more isolation sections have been added .
This meant that instead of 16 switches, there were now 18 and the Peco mounting blocks wouldn't fit inside my framework.
Loath to break up the wooden framework an alternative mounting for the Peco switches was looked for.

After about 20 mins of searching around the layout room and shed for something suitable a couple of old, donated to the cause, baking trays came to light.
It might just do the trick.

Careful measuring of the Peco switch, some calculations, some measured twice marking up and then some slow but steady work with the cutting disk on the Dremel motor tool and this might just work...


Cut to size and a bit of panel beating...


Spray paint gloss black, do something else for 16+ hours while it dries and then fit...


Its not perfect, the mounting slot should have been done in maybe 3 sections with narrow strips left between each section to help the slot maintain its shape. There is some flex in the metal and the switches fall through the gap in the middle.

Still, once the remaining switches required are purchased some Superglue should do the trick.


The 5 Blue/White switches on the right are wired up to isolate the sections of the yard (A, B & C), goods loop (D) and Henlland Down line (E) and have been tested.
This is a big leap ahead for me.
Up to 7 locos can now be managed in the Henllan Station layout. Only one at a time at this stage but the operating potential of the layout has just been increased dramatically.

Obviously a fair amount of testing was required last night :doublethumb

 


Last edited on Mon Aug 17th, 2009 03:28 am by Marty

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Well, no end to this mans' ingenuity:exclam  :doublethumb

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the work of a dedicated tighta**se,brill,
looks ok Marty.

:doublethumb:mutley:mutley:cool:

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Well done Marty that is the way to produce something unique

As you used the baking tray i cant resist this "Now your really cooking on gas"

cheers Brian

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That's really brilliant Marty, a super idea.  Another one filed away for future reference ;-)

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That is a bit of genius Marty, but imagine the scene around the country next weekend as our dearly beloveds start to prepare the Sunday roast:shock:
:lol:

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Great idea Marty, I just hope the Mrs isn't looking under everything for that tray! Though I doubt if she'd recognize it!

Wayne

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Wayne Williams wrote: Great idea Marty, I just hope the Mrs isn't looking under everything for that tray! Though I doubt if she'd recognize it!

Wayne


It's OK lads, I'm safe, the tray, and 3 others, were surplus to requirements and rather than be thrown away were donated to the railway some time ago.

So I've got plenty of options for further control panels :thumbs ;-)

Besides, seconding a "current" baking tray from Tracy's kitchen for model railway purposes.... sorry, I like living :chicken

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Very very smart control panel Marty :thumbs

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well done marty, :thumbs

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Very smart indeed! It sure beats my grotty old setup.

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:doublethumb Love the control panel .... Cool!

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Yes, it did stretch a bit with the heat from the Dremel, but like you say, once the switches are glued in, it will all sit right.  Nice one, Marty :thumbs

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Thanks guys,
The rest of the switches have arrived today and I've restocked my dwindling supply of wire so this weekend I'm gonna be a workin on the railway... at least the point motors anyway.

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Great re-cycling job there Marty.The panel really looks the business!!!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Henllan Station board - ALL points are now motorised!!

Another major step forward for the Newcastle Emlyn layout.

Only one slightly soldered finger too!!!

After all the improvisation of the lever mounting frame I've ended up with a gap!



The original plan was to have one lever per set of points but after studying the station signalling plans in Adrian Vaughan's The Heart of the GWR I realised that simple crossovers from one running line to another used just the one lever to throw both points.
In the photo above you can see where I have renumbered the points to reflect this, lever 4 now throws both points 2 & 3 together and lever 5 throws both points 4 & 5 together.
This means that there are less levers than were planned, for the time being a blanking plate will be manufactured to cover the gap.
When working signals are attempted the levers will have somewhere to go.

The original power pack, a 12 V 500mA one, didn't have the muscle to do both Peco PL-26s at once and a frustrating 30 mins was spent tracing wiring to see why one point would throw and the other wouldn't.
Nothing wrong with the wiring.... so some exploration of the spare electrical bits box discovered an 11V 1000mA power pack that would throw both PECO PL26s at once.
Yes, eventually I plan on making up or buying a capacitor discharge supply but that's for Ron (later'on).
The power pack won't, however, throw two SEEP point motors at the same time. The Green Grove Milk Factory sidings have two sets of double points that need setting up the same way but for the time being each motor is on a separate lever. The 4 yellow ones together in the picture...

...and somewhere in the spaghetti junction of wiring a short has occurred and the isolation switch 'A' for the cattle dock no longer isolates. Some wiring tracing required.
Not too bad in this view...


But you can see why fault finding has been put off to another day when I'm feeling patient...


 Comments and suggestions welcome as always.

Last edited on Tue Sep 1st, 2009 05:04 am by Marty

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Marty,

Real signal boxes often had spare levers, the result of changes to track layouts over the years so if you have a couple of spare switches you could put them in as numbers 2 & 3, just not connected to anything.

For tracing faults in wiring a continuity tester is a wonderful tool.

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Marty, could you not just buy a couple of extra switches to fill the gap?  Maybe different coloured ones so no one gets confused.

Last edited on Tue Sep 1st, 2009 01:51 am by MaxSouthOz

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Thanks Ian and Max.

I have spare levers of a different colour and will add them in to the frame.

I do also have a multi-meter and don't really anticipate much trouble in tracing the fault. I suspect that my dodgy soldering of wire too thick for the D25 pin connectors has resulted in a blob of solder bridging two pins. Just a matter of taking a deep breath and diving in. We shall see.

Last edited on Tue Sep 1st, 2009 03:20 am by Marty

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so apart from all that it looks the biz and does the job!
i like it a lot.

:doublethumb:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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owen69 wrote: so apart from all that it looks the biz and does the job!
i like it a lot.

:doublethumb:lol::lol::lol::cool:


Indeed it does... and so far, with only a little bit of testing, is proving reliable.

I've also put a wee drop of oil on all of the point motor barrels as per Jeff's suggestion.

 

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This has been a lovely read, thanks for posting it all so far.

I trust you have been here-

http://www.newcastleemlyn.info/page16.html

I love the way the way the end of the engine house seems to have been cut out to let the loco chimney inside!


Could be useful?

Doug

Last edited on Tue Sep 1st, 2009 03:38 am by Chubber

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All really starting to look smart now Marty

The cdu is a good idea you will get a more positive throw with that.

keep going on the layout as once you start your module production on the layout may stop

cheers brian

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Impressive Marty

And all everybody ever says is " oh wiring it's simple really" :hmm

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dooferdog wrote: This has been a lovely read, thanks for posting it all so far.

I trust you have been here-

http://www.newcastleemlyn.info/page16.html

I love the way the way the end of the engine house seems to have been cut out to let the loco chimney inside!


Could be useful?

Doug


Glad you enjoyed it Doug, I'm enjoying the journey and like sharing it. It keeps me motivated.

Certainly have been to that site.... the last picture on the "more railway" page show a class 37 (I think) collecting the last wagons from the branch in 1973.
Although I'm predominantly a steam man trying to model late 30's the diesel is just going to have to be added to the MPD in the future.

I plan to scratchbuild that engine shed in the future too... From my interperatation of maps and photographs it was built over the steep gully created by the brook running into the Afon Teifi. One side of the shed anchored at the top of each bank.

There is a picture of an 00 scratchbuild of the shed done by someone else on the backscene on the layout to remind me.

cheers

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henryparrot wrote: keep going on the layout as once you start your module production on the layout may stop

The diorama certainly stopped all progress on the layout .... we shall see. I've learnt some tricks doing the diorama and hopefully the module won't take me as long.

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Alan wrote: And all everybody ever says is " oh wiring it's simple really" :hmm

Well, it is really...  just one wire at a time, power source to device to return wiring. Move on to the next one. Yeah, brother... I am deliberately avoiding things like double slips and reversing loops. :thumbs

And when you come back to it 6 months later, that is when the real trouble really starts. :thud

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Looking good Marty :thumbs

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Is that gap big enough for a tinnie or bottle of something Marty ;-)

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I might get a miniature bottle of spirits in there Lawrence :thumbs

Purely for medicinal purposes. :lol:

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Father's Day 2009

The lads came over this afternoon for Father's Day.

No. 1 son, an apprentice sparky, disappeared under the baseboard to finalise the wiring for the Henllan station board and Altycefan part of the line. They all work now. :lol:

No. 2 son ransacked the stock of stored polystyrene and started on the hillside between Altycefan and Henllan.
It was time to do some scenery and this part of the track and wiring is now pretty much finished.

3 hours of mayhem and mess ensued... but we had a lot of fun.
I'm still vaccuming the polystryene off the floor in all corners of the house, off my clothes, off the dog, out of my beard....



The hill has progressed to this level and it's still going up.



Nephew from Melbourne is coming over in 4 weeks and am thinking of getting a Morley Vesta N controller for two so we can do a bit of serious "training" together.

Last edited on Mon Sep 7th, 2009 05:05 am by Marty

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seems you had a fun day and still got things done,
coming on  Marty.

:doublethumb:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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Blimey! Fun for all the family,eh?? No chance of MY lot helping me out!:roll::roll::sad:

  At this rate,you'll be finished by Christmas!:lol::lol::lol:

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Coming along nicely mate, love the wireing, as Allan said its easy once you get it finnished.

Phill

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Great to see you having a great day together with your sons Marty

And progress on the layout aswell

My son lives in marble arch London so not much chance of him helping me:lol:

I will say that is the thing when your children move away you dont discourage them for obvious reasons but privately i do miss him being around talking on the phone is just not the same

cheers Brian

 

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A handy pair to have about Marty!  Mine mean well but are too young to be let loose like that!

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Christmas!!! I don't think so John. But I'm aiming to maintain the pace.

Always nice to have sons (or daughters) visit, something I have to consider when I haven't been to see my mum for a while. :roll:

I was pretty lucky to have the lads join in, their social calendars are pretty full.

...anyway...

I like polystyrene for the way it can be layered together, glued with liquid nails and sculpted. (Must learn to keep fingers out of the way when sculpting with a bread knife! Thank goodness for band-aids. sigh)

But by gum it's messy...
The hill is progressing nicely, here's some pictures of progress.

Still working on it, some more to add on the left near the backboard, some more sculpting and shaping needed, some more around the river and tracks around the base. This photo also shows how the polystyrene sticks to everything.


Vacuum cleaner hose on the door handle, plastic garbage bag on the floor, what freaking mess. Tracy stuck her head around the door, shook her head and then went upstairs to bed, muttering...


Still, lots of fun and really pleased with the result so far.
The hill was planned to be a view block between the cassette/ pentrecourt halt/ altycefan part of the layout and the Henllan station.
It was also hoped that it would disguise the sharp curve that is now under the tunnel on the right.
Northern side...


Western End... Henllan Station on the right.


Southern side (still under construction).
Taken from head height if you are standing, by the time it gets trees on top of it, it will be a very effective view block, especially as the plan is to operate the layout sitting down.


And closer in, the potential for some modelling and photography is looking good too.




Enjoyable but a different method or material for the next hill I think...

Constructive criticism, suggestions and questions welcome as always.

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Static electricity certainly makes it stick, but it comes off easily.  Can't add anything constructive by way of advice - only encouragement. :thumbs

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Thanks Max,

So, if I put a strong enough charge on the metal rubbish bin and place the bin under the work area ... ;-)

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Nice to see another winter layout, even if your snow is a tad overscale :mutley

Bags of scenic potential, judging by those last five shots. Hurry up, will you?

Mike

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:mutley:mutley:mutley

What do they say... oh yes...

"I'm doing it Sybil"  :thumbs

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hill ,hill what hill i see no hill, a bloody great mountain is what i see!!!sheesh.
glad you are enjoying yourself Marty it does look good.

:hmm:mutley:mutley:mutley:cool:

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owen69 wrote: hill ,hill what hill i see no hill, a bloody great mountain is what i see!

Yeah, she's pretty impressive when veiwed by the mark I eyeball at track level as the last photo shows, however, not really a mountain.

Way back when I was planning the layout I did some calculations based on the topographic map of the area I am modelling and decided that although the gorge at Altycefan was pretty spectacular, the surrounding hills, modelled to scale, really didn't give me the "railway in a scene" that I was after.

So I've exaggerated the contour height by 50% to give the surrounding hills a bit more Oomph and to convey the impression a little better.

 Always fun Owen.

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I find a 'Dustbuster' type vac. a boon in these situations.

You will know about the danger of adhesives, Marty.
A drop of the wrong type will melt the whole mountain (and give off a form of cyanide).

Good work!

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Thanks Peter,

The vacuum cleaner is a permanent resident in the layout room at the moment. I'm thinking of leaving it running while I'm sculpting... maybe even gaffa taping the nozzle to my bread knife!!!

dolfelin wrote:
You will know about the danger of adhesives, Marty. and give off a form of cyanide

Is that what the smell was!!!

I did a test patch to start with to see how it would go. Seemed to work OK without eating away the polystyrene so it was full steam ahead.

 

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Good luck with that.
Check it after a month!

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The idea has merit, Marty.  Remember how high the rim of the bin will be though. :mutley

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ddolfelin wrote: Good luck with that.
Check it after a month!



I really should read the instructions ... From the selleys web site - Not for use on polyethylene, polypropylene, Teflon, silicone or polystyrene.

As you say, I think I'll go and do some track laying on the Newcastle Emlyn station for a while and see what happens.

Thanks for the heads up.

Aah, further down it says... Use LIQUID NAILS MIRROR METAL GLASS for mirrors and LIQUID NAILS FAST for polystyrene.

It just happens, because the 3 pack was on special and "fast" means less waiting time, I bought the liquid nails FAST.

Even so, I think I'll leave it for a while and see.


 

Last edited on Mon Sep 14th, 2009 04:26 am by Marty

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Have you tried a hot wire cutter, Marty?
Much less mess!

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No, but Tracy has been encouraging me to go out and buy one. :roll: :thumbs:thumbs

 

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I may have missed this point Marty, but do you have an access point should something derail? not that it will off course given your meticulous trackwork, but you might get a bogie failure or suchlike ;-)

Didn't know GWR tracks ran so close to K2 :lol:

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Lawrence wrote: I may have missed this point Marty, but do you have an access point should something derail? not that it will off course given your meticulous trackwork, but you might get a bogie failure or suchlike ;-)

Hi Lawrence,

The hill has hollow sections  where the track is accessible from underneath the benchwork.
I built the polystyrene slabs up a bit like an igloo.
So, when, not if, I do get a derailment in the tunnel, the passengers will see the giant hand to the rescue...

Lawrence wrote:
Didn't know GWR tracks ran so close to K2 :lol:

:mutley Jealous, that's wot you lot are :chicken

 



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Looooooooooooooooking Marty

How are you going to seal it all, if you use plaster/ modrock in patches that will also bond all the polystyrene together.

I am so looking forward to you starting work on the ground area, just so much to learn from :thumbs

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Alan wrote: How are you going to seal it all, if you use plaster/ modrock in patches that will also bond all the polystyrene together.

Yes Alan,
Same method I used for the Pentrecourt Halt diorama, chux dishcloths in a polyfiller, PVA and earth Oxide mix, layered to make a hardshell and then more of the same but without the chux to complete the surface and allow some more sculpting.

Now, if I do 3 or 4 layers of the chux plaster cloth base it will certainly hold the polystyrene in place but I am a little worried that it might collapse in on itself if the polystyrene is eaten away underneath it.


I'll have to turn the Pentrecourt halt diorama upside down and see how the polystyrene is doing there, I'm pretty sure I used the same glue.


Alan wrote: I am so looking forward to you starting work on the ground area, just so much to learn from :thumbs
Thanks mate, glad to hear people are learning from my mistakes. :shock: :mutley

Seriously though... I'm really happy with the progress so far... and if it helps anyone else, so much the better... onwards and upwards. :thumbs

Last edited on Mon Sep 14th, 2009 05:09 am by Marty

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I'm really pleased you showed these photos Marty because I was going to try this too, but what a messy job it entails!  I think I'll revert to the method I used for my Quarry, it might take more time but it's also more "constructional" if you see what I mean, plus it gave me a lot of pleasure doing it which I don't think I would get from hacking polystyrene about - and I've got loads of it from my local TV shop!!!:roll:

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 That large hill / small mountain has the potential to look very impressive when it is done, i'm glad i didn't have to clean up the mess though :thumbs

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I've just conducted a limited experiment.



That is a 2" thick piece of expanded polyurethane.

A small drip of Liquid Poly went straight through and out the other side and shows no sign of stopping 5 minutes later.

The PVA glue has not penetrated the surface. Yet.

The UHU is gently boring a hole.

Last edited on Mon Sep 14th, 2009 08:39 am by ddolfelin

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That's a very useful experiment :thumbs

I have always used PVA, takes a little longer to dry, but always works, but then I don't have any of the other glues in the shed :roll:

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Now, three hours later, the liquid poly has eaten a 2" x 2" cube out of the polyurethane and hasn't stopped yet!
The UHU has excavated a 0.75" hole.
The PVA has hardly had an impact.

Perhaps best to remember also that the fumes from liquid poly can cause as much melting as contact (I've had this!).

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:wow Marty! I'm impressed!!!!

Glad to hear you have made accommodations for the occasional derailment. I have the same issues on my layout.

I really do not like that polystyrene stuff, just too messy for my taste. I guess every type foam has it's drawbacks though. The blue foam I'm using doesn't carve very well, but it does clean up easily.

Really like what you are doing with the hill, should look super when it's done.

Wayne

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The hill looks great Marty. If I were you,I'd add some colour to your plaster/cloth so that if it ever chips,you're not left with glaring white underneath.(Maybe even paint the polystyrene first with brown/sand coloured acrylic?)
  We all just KNOW that you're going to do an amazing job on this,if Pentrecourt Halt is anything to go by!!!
:pathead

Looking forward to the next bit!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

Last edited on Mon Sep 14th, 2009 03:57 pm by georgejacksongenius

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Ken wrote: - and I've got loads of it from my local TV shop!!!:roll:

Ken

Glad it helped Ken.
I've got a loft space full of it too :thud

I'd like to use it up but I think the look on Tracy's face last night suggests an alternative method should be used ;-)  :thumbs

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Kevr wrote:  

 That large hill / small mountain has the potential to look very impressive when it is done, i'm glad i didn't have to clean up the mess though :thumbs

Thanks Kev, ... and what a clean up too, easy I though... and it was... but time consuming tracking all the bits down... oh brother.

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ddolfelin wrote: Now, three hours later, the liquid poly has eaten a 2" x 2" cube out of the polyurethane and hasn't stopped yet!
The UHU has excavated a 0.75" hole.
The PVA has hardly had an impact.

Perhaps best to remember also that the fumes from liquid poly can cause as much melting as contact (I've had this!).


A very useful experiment and a clear warning. I hope you conducted it outside. :mrgreen:

I've upended my Pentrecourt Halt diorama and there is no damage what-so-ever from the liquid Nails "Fast" nor is the recently completed hillside showing any impact from that adhesive either.

I'm fairly confident that the combination I have used is sound.

Not so the leak of varish on the Three Rivers test bed... but that is another story for another time... when I complete that thread there will be photos.

Last edited on Tue Sep 15th, 2009 02:12 am by Marty

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Wayne Williams wrote:  The blue foam I'm using doesn't carve very well,

Useful to know, what did you use to shape it.

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georgejacksongenius wrote: If I were you,I'd add some colour to your plaster/cloth so that if it ever chips,you're not left with glaring white underneath.(Maybe even paint the polystyrene first with brown/sand coloured acrylic?)
Thanks John,

My standard earth coloured ground "goop" uses a brown Oxide used to colour concrete/render and it works a treat.

Onwards and upwards.

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Marty

Just looking at the photos again, show what a huge layout you are building, I keep forgetting that this is N scale/gauge, how long is the track plan,or what size room is it in, cause that would take up a very large space in 00.

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Alan wrote:  how long is the track plan,or what size room is it in, cause that would take up a very large space in 00.

Alan,

The hill has made a big difference to the overall view of the layout. It has suddenly become more 3 dimensional and has more "depth". I'm very pleased.

Not as long as I want it to be!! But you have to start somewhere.

I had hoped (and still do) to model the entire branch from the junction with the Aberystwyth - Carmarthen line at Pencader all the way to the terminus at Newcastle Emlyn.

In it's current configuration (L-shaped) in a room 13' 6" by 9' the single track run from cassette to terminus is about 69'.

Then there are all the sidings.

I mustn't be greedy, it's enough to get on with... and there is always the other side of the room where my workbench is.

Last edited on Tue Sep 15th, 2009 03:53 am by Marty

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Thought it was big Marty

That would take up a very large double garage in 00, I think :hmm

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Reckon it would, basically double it, 27' x 18'.

That's why I chose N gauge. :thumbs
My double garage isn't that big and the cars, pushbikes and workshop live in it.

Last edited on Tue Sep 15th, 2009 04:14 am by Marty

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Marty wrote:
Reckon it would, basically double it, 27' x 18'.

That's why I chose N gauge. :thumbs
My double garage isn't that big and the cars, pushbikes and workshop live in it.


:hmm:hmm
I live in mine sometimes :roll::roll::roll:

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Marty wrote:
Wayne Williams wrote:  The blue foam I'm using doesn't carve very well,

Useful to know, what did you use to shape it.


I have not done a lot of shaping as yet, but the spots that I have tried, the foam comes out in small chunks about the size of a marble or even bigger. So it is hard to remove small amount of foam from the surface.

When I get to an area like that I will do a thread on the problem and issues of the blue foam.

Wayne

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The Hill and a new toy

Progress on the hill is steady and a solution has been found to reducing the mess it makes.

One of the problems with cleaning up the polystyrene mess was that it filled up the vacuum cleaner quite quickly.
Tracy found a reusable vacuum bag for our vacuum cleaner, rather than a paper disposable one.
The bag has an open end that is sealed by a plastic clip and is now dedicated to vacuuming up modelling stuff.

The other trick is to vacuum as you go, that is, one hand for the bread knife, scalpel, etc the other hand holds the nozzle of the
running vacuum cleaner close to the area being worked on.
This method prevents the polystyrene from spreading on the 4 winds and was quite successful.
Depending on the vintage and power of your Hoover you might want ear plugs.

Anyway...

To the pictures... it's still a big mound of polystyrene but hopefully you can see that compared to some earlier photos that it has grown a bit and taken on more shape.



A tractor and tree have been added to give some scale representation.



... and a little closer, for those capable of picking out white water in a white river bed on a white hillside, the stream that runs into the waterfall in the centre of the picture above, starts to the right of the tractor.



This has been mentioned elsewhere but a Farish 0-6-0 tank was taken apart for cleaning the other day and one of the small screws/bolts disappeared onto the wooden floor never to be seen again. :thud

Hoping that Richard of DDC Concepts would have a suitable replacement a trip to his Naval Base shop about 40 mins drive south of Perth was made on Saturday.
Nice and helpful bloke.
He pointed out that the screw only held the copper pickups to one of the brush wires and that a touch of solder would do the trick... this after ransacking his supply of small screws/bolts to no avail.
So, since it was time to replace the "beginners" soldering iron, a new toy was duly purchased, with solder and flux and the Farish tank is now as good as new.



The poor beaten up old yellow one on the right just doesn't compare.

There is also a small hand held controller on my workbench that is being made up from scratch. Just playing around with the concept at the moment and might start another thread for some assistance, but at least soldering fine connections will no longer be a problem.

 

Last edited on Tue Sep 22nd, 2009 03:15 am by Marty

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Sorry, Marty.  I should have told you that you can cut the bottom of the paper vac bags open and close them with foldback clips to make them re-useable.  Bit late now, but someone else might benefit.

That's a mountain of a mountain.  You will have a lot of fun doing the scenery on that. :thumbs 

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No problems Max, Tracy sorted it :lol:

She's a beaut alright, it's going to take me ages. Thank goodness that it is the biggest of the bunch.

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The tractor really shows the scale of the mountain Marty - coming on 'andsome

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i used to have one of those hot pokers too Marty,great for making holes in things not so good for soldering ..
like the new one !

:doublethumb:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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Marty, I do like the looks of your mountain, keep the pictures coming.

I might give your idea of the running vacuum a try when I am sawing the blue foam, those tiny bits get everywhere.

Wayne

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That mountain is huge but lovely thou.

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Now THAT's a mountain - and a very brave tractor driver:exclam:shock:

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rector wrote: Now THAT's a mountain - and a very brave tractor driver:exclam:shock:
Shhh !!  Don't want health and safety to hear about it. :roll::roll:

It's all looking very spectacular Marty and I think you've achieved your desire to have the railway set in "real" scenery perfectly rather than the scenery around the railway. :pathead

Last edited on Tue Sep 22nd, 2009 01:11 pm by Petermac

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rector wrote: Now THAT's a mountain - and a very brave tractor driver:exclam:shock:

You mean its bigger than what the Americans have, blimey :thud. :mutley:mutley

Phill 

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:lol::lol::lol: Certainly where I live, Phill:exclam  Highest point on Long Island is 122 metres above sea level. 

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rector wrote: :lol::lol::lol: Certainly where I live, Phill:exclam  Highest point on Long Island is 122 metres above sea level.
That makes Long Island about 130 metres higher than Holland then Tim :cheers

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:mutley:mutley:mutley Sorry Marty - your thread ...

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Thanks Gents,

The success of the hill (that wants to be a mountain) in achieving the looked for view block and scenic potential has provided that further enthusiasm for more progress.

I'm working in the shops this Saturday, but more as it comes to hand.

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Your wannabe mountain is very impressive and imposing, Marty. This is going to be spectacular.

Mike

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Gunna need a tree or 50 to cover the North face.... any offers? ;-)

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You could always dig a bit out on the North face and stick a woodmans cottage in there, complete with wood stacks :thumbs, save on the tree building/

Phill

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i recall an american layout had the same prob,if i remember correctly he used
cooton wool balls dyed various shades of green,made a huge forrest of them.

:hmm:lol::lol::cool:

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Marty this is from our Index and may help you :

http://dansresincasting.com/Puffball%20trees.htm

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that`s the one Bob,how did i forget we had that...

:thud:lol::lol::lol::cool:

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owen69 wrote: that`s the one Bob,how did i forget we had that...

:thud:lol::lol::lol::cool:


Age Owen, Age :mutley:mutley

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Rather typical of today - that "Puff-ball Tree" article warns you about the dangers of using some of the ingredients in unventilated areas !!!  I think they were refering to hairspray but I wouldn't know anything about how volatile that stuff is.  :roll::roll::roll::roll:

They'll be telling us next not to test for continuity on a DCC circuit by putting your tongue on the tracks !!!

Last edited on Wed Sep 23rd, 2009 11:03 am by Petermac

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somebody let Phill out again!!!

:pedal:pedal:cool:

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owen69 wrote: somebody let Phill out again!!!

:pedal:pedal:cool:

:mutley:mutley:mutley:mutley:mutley:thumbs:thumbs:thumbs:thumbs:thumbs - you remember too Owen. :roll::roll:


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Thanks guys,

The woodman and Tim's AXE can stay away from my layout :mutley

Actually, a charcoal burner... :hmm there's a thought, do they have them in Wales?

I won't use the puff ball method, I've seen some articles in magazines as well and while it does a quick job, I think I can do better. I will try to be less critical of the trees in the middle of the wood. The trees on the outside of the wood will get a little more attention.

Luckily the slope is quite steep in places and there is scope for rockfaces, skree slopes and open spaces where trees can't get a hold.

Onwards and upwards.

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marty`s motto-Onwards and upwards.

and it certainly is !!!

:pedal:mutley:mutley:mutley:cool:

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Marty wrote:
I will try to be less critical of the trees in the middle of the wood. The trees on the outside of the wood will get a little more attention.

Marty,
I have a similar area on my layout (way in the future yet) so I, for one, would be interested in how you approach that concept.

Wayne

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Wayne Williams wrote: Marty wrote:
I will try to be less critical of the trees in the middle of the wood. The trees on the outside of the wood will get a little more attention.

Marty,
I have a similar area on my layout (way in the future yet) so I, for one, would be interested in how you approach that concept.

Wayne

Depending on how far in the future Wayne - have you thought of seeds ? :roll::roll::roll:  Bob would like them - they're cheap and easy to sow if you can wait 40 or 50 years. :thumbs:lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol:

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Marty wrote:
I won't use the puff ball method, I've seen some articles in magazines as well and while it does a quick job, I think I can do better.

 Glad you said that, Marty. You're right - you can. You just avoided a stern ticking-off ;-)

Mike

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Marty wrote:
Actually, a charcoal burner... :hmm there's a thought, do they have them in Wales?
Only in Gwent, I understand;-) I agree about the puffball method - good at a viewing distance, but no less. And certainly not in N.

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OK, no charcoal burner then....

and definitely no puff ball trees (although thanks for the thought, the concept of mass and quickly produced trees for a forest has a lot of merit).

The story (and pictures) will unfold here when it happens.... but don't hold your breath, life continues to get in the way of modelling :???:

Marty
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Scalescenes N scale shed. Been threatening to take a photo of it for a while.

This little shed has been around on my layout since July, I downloaded it as a freebie from the scalescenes web site to see if I could do justice to their product.

It's not permanently placed on the layout but I've thrown together some scenic bits and pieces just to give it some context.

It went together quite easily using PVA applied with a paintbrush and a new craft knife blade.

1472 as been recently "dirtied up" with pastel dust...



The guttering on this side is a bit wonky but it helps give it a run down country look.



Yes, this is N, check out the coupling on the cattle wagon.

Last edited on Mon Nov 23rd, 2009 08:07 pm by Marty

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Cute little shed, Marty. Was the sign part of the package?
Love the weathering on the wagon as well.

Mike

Marty
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Thanks Mike

A choice of signs come with the pack.  A fair few are BR era though.

Last edited on Mon Nov 23rd, 2009 11:25 pm by Marty

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It's little cracker, Marty.  I have to keep reminding myself that it's N scale/gauge. :thumbs

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Lovely building, how the heck can you see to build in N is beyond me.

Phill

Marty
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I get so much more layout with N that I'm prepared to look a bit like a dork while wandering around the house with my optivisor on.
I couldn't work in N without it.
Mind you, the timewasters look at me funny!

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Those are great shots Marty. :thumbs  Apart from the obvious (weathering & shed etc.) I love the backscene - it makes the whole thing look real.

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Marty, that looks better than I can do in HO scale!

I gave N gauge a lot of thought before choosing HO, there are still times when I think maybe I should have done it in N. Then I go and look at the size of the engines in N and I feel much better! :pedal

Wayne

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Marty

You have made a super job of that many would not achieve that good in OO with n gauge its a credit to you.

I think we should have a compettion of who looks the biggest Dork with their optivisor on:lol::lol:

cheers Brian

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henryparrot wrote: Marty

You have made a super job of that many would not achieve that good in OO with n gauge its a credit to you.

I think we should have a compettion of who looks the biggest Dork with their optivisor on:lol::lol:

cheers Brian

Some of us don't need artifical aids to look like a dork.:mrgreen:

Oh yes, nice work Marty. :pathead

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A dork? Is that a good thing or a bad thing to be.

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See Wikipedia - Dork and make your own mind up!

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Aha, not a good thing to be I see. Ah well, never mind.

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You were maybe thinking of "Stork" Bob. :lol::lol:  That's either margarine, a bird or something on a flower (although the spelling differs !!)  Does "dork" have as many meanings ? :roll::roll::roll:

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Marty, be sure to send a piccy of your shed to John Wiffen at Scalescenes.....:thumbs

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Marty,
Lovely shots of the shed and your weathered loco and cattle wagon. Just think...if it were not for those couplings,those shots would be hard to tell from the real thing.
  G'wan....whip 'em off....you know you want to!!!:twisted::twisted::twisted: Fit some nice DG couplings.

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Alan wrote: Peter

That's a very useful experiment :thumbs

I have always used PVA, takes a little longer to dry, but always works, but then I don't have any of the other glues in the shed :roll:


There is an ideal glue sold [yes, a four-letter word I'm afraid...] for gluing polystyrene, in the form of 'coving adhesive'. It's a sort of paste which is also gap filling and dries a lot quicker than PVA on Polly Stireen.

See  http://www.screwfix.com/prods/91610/Sealants-Adhesives/Adhesives/Grab-Adhesives/Solvent-Free/Elch-Coving-Adhesive-310ml

It should be better known to modellers and it is really adhesive, in fact, silly Doofers who get it down their shirt front have been known to remove a three-penny bit sized bit of skin and fur together with their shirt at bed time.....


Doug

Marty
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New Morely Controller, Cab Control Panel Operational and modifications to "the mountain".

So, the madhouse of a retailer's Christmas behind me, several days of lying in a crumpled and exhausted heap on the lounge watching the Boxing Day cricket, a week or so R&R (including modelling) and it's now back on deck.

Nice to be back too but it's going to take me while to get up to speed with whats going on... if I ever do.

It was such a delight to get back in to the layout room after weeks of wistfully glancing in while rushing past.
The Dapol track cleaning car was rolled out of the MOW depot in "vacuum" mode (Stunningly effective but where does all that fluff come from?) and then "cleaning" mode with some isopropyl alcohol as track cleaner.
A train was run on the old controller to confirm all wiring had survived the neglect and then it was full steam ahead adding in the new Morely Controller and wiring up the remainder of the control panel for Cab/block control.

The Morely controller is the N Vesta Zero Two with two controllers, a CDU and handhelds with 2.5m leads and was a Christmas present to ME from ME as I can't seem to get across to T that buying me railway related presents is the preferred option!?

In all fairness the Christmas present to ME from T was a combined Digital radio/Ipod docking station for the railway room to replace the dying 1980's turntable/stereo currently in service.
Since the new radio has a significantly smaller footprint (as well as incomparable reception/quality of sound) and leaves more room for modelling "stuff" on my workbench it was actually quite inspired.

Under the bench it was obvious that there were parts of the original wiring that could have been done better and so it was re-done, improving with practice, there is hope for me yet.

Probably 4 days of wiring, including a couple of hours of solving that elusive short circuit problem, and twin cab/block control was finally instated on the Newcastle Emlyn Branch, something that I had been dreaming about since I started the project, sheesh over 5 years ago!!!! Progress is being made.

The station diagram, probably revision 6, was upgraded, printed and added to the control panel, point levers and isolation switches were numbered and eventually we get this...



and on the inside...



Both sons have been involved in test running sessions, tasked to shunt the goods and the consensus is :thumbs:thumbs:thumbs

Sick of wiring, the east side of "the mountain" is getting some Terra-forming, an ongoing process, new house (Kestrel kit) under construction and in place to provide some scale and a road and bridge block hacked into the hillside roughly where it should be. The trusty tractor is on the road and the Henllan station area on the right.



The CDU in the Morely Controller doesn't appear to have enough grunt to throw the majority of my point motors, mostly single PECO or Seeps and certainly won't throw sets 4 and 5 which are PECO's in tandem.

Could be my wiring, as my points and controllers run back through the same common return, which does work quite happily with the power pack that is currently being used to power the point motors but may require more amps than the CDU puts out.

More thought is required to determine why the Morely CDU won't do the job but at this point in time, trains are running, points are throwing crisply and that is just fine by me.

 

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Marty,not too many CDUs will throw 4-5 Peco motors at once & if in tandem, depends on recharge time, sometimes it is cheaper to provide a few more CDU & split the circuits up.
Talk to Richard Johnsson about Peco motors - Mmmm stand back & he may sell you his Masterswitch.
Even single motors have to be free to move.

Welcome back by the way - this time next month, you may catch up with what has been happening !

Marty
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These are single Peco motors Ron, in most cases. Power from the CDU through a PECO passing contact lever to the motor and then from the motor to the common return.

I'll try and do up a sketch of my wiring for you to mull over if you have the time?

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if you have a meter, can you read the voltage output from the CDU? The yellow light in the console goes out when you operate the passing contact switch then comes back almost straight away? You could ring Aust Morley in Perth 93056358 .

 

PS Rick has one unit - talk to him as well

Last edited on Tue Jan 5th, 2010 02:24 am by

Marty
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Yeah, the meter test is on the list and also a seperate peco motor rigged stand alone as a test.

I should be able to nut it out.

I spent a good half an hour at the WA Morely distributors place here in Perth when I picked up the unit.
Nice bloke, currently working on an N gauge branchline too. Several of ChrisT's special edition N gauge loco's in his motive power fleet. It's a small world.
A member of the "Northern Districts Model Railway" club too. Useful contacts for me.

Rick, any thoughts about the Morley CDU?

Myansome
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:thumbs :wowfor a novice like me on wiring ......... inspiring stuff Marty! Cool!

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Keep going Marty, this is looking good!

Mike

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Mud pies

The hill at the back of Henllan has been hacked mostly into shape and the first layer of hardshell and colour applied.

The method used involves:

1) Cutting woven and absorbent cleaning cloths into strips about 4 - 5cm wide and 20 - 30cm long (depending where they are being used),
2) Mixing up a "ground goop" of polyfilla (plaster), plaster/concrete colouring (brown), water and PVA glue to a milky consistency in a large ice cream container (after first putting the ice cream in a safer place :lol:).
3) Soaking the strips of woven cloth in the ground goop, and
4) overlapping the soaked strips (basically my version of plaster bandages) onto the landscape framework.

Drop sheets and track protection are essential, as is someone to turn the outside tap on for you when the time comes! (Thanks T)

The first application shown is still wet and chocolate mudcakish! But the concept is clear hopefully.



The hills were deliberately exaggerated by 1.5 times to give a bit of impact to the layout. The real thing has a gentler slope from what can be made out from the contour maps. However, the railway in a landscape that is hoped for shows potential below.



Eventually the first layer is complete, the Kestrel house was finished between batches and drying and some rolling stock was added for effect. Pre-empting the thaw for those of you in the northern hemisphere but the snow mountain has gone. Thank goodness.



Closer in...
The signal box and lamp hut are Hornby pre-cast RTR, the goods shed is Scalescenes paper and card and the house the Kestrel plastic kit.
The PECO Baby Castle 2252 is reversing quietly after leaving the cattle wagons in the cattle dock and the assorted Farish and Dapol wagons in the morning down goods are heading for the not yet existent Newcastle Emlyn terminus.



Peaking over the top of the hill into the Henllan yard the station really does need platforms, next on the list me thinks...



... and through the "to be constructed" road bridge at the up end of Henllan the signal box and goods shed...



The wonderful thing about the Peco 2251 Collett goods shown is that the new Morley controller has made a world of difference to it's slow speed control.
Originally slow speed was a bitter disappointment with my old controller, jerky and totally useless for shunting.
Now, much to my delight, and I spent the better part of an hour testing believe you me, she coasts up to the rolling stock as gentle as can be and once coupled up (and that's another story) takes up the slack one truck at a time before pulling reliably and steadily away with her train.
Magnificent, just got to remember that "testing" doesn't get the next layer on the hillside done...

As always, any thoughts, suggestions or constructive feedback welcome.

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That's excellent, Marty!  You can see realistic looking natural wearing of the mountainside in the raw form.  It's going to be a joy to do the vegetation. :thumbs

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Lookin' good, marty! Are your 'cloths' an antipodean version of 'J Cloths'?

Doug

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dooferdog wrote: Lookin' good, marty! Are your 'cloths' an antipodean version of 'J Cloths'?

Doug


They look very like it to me Doof.

You can get similar in rolls of 100 from our mega-warehouse hardware store in Oz. Chux is one brand, Oates do another.

Marty
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MaxSouthOz wrote: ...  It's going to be a joy to do the vegetation. :thumbs

Thanks Max, champing at the bit...

Henllan platforms first though...

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Marty,
Could you please elaborate a little more on the way you made up your mixture of goop?

Like how much PVA to the amount of water, and how much paint to the amount of water.

How long did you soak the cloth in the mixture?

Did your mixture fill in all of the little holes that are in the plaster cloth?

When you laid down the cloth on the mountain, did you smooth out the cloth, or just lay it down?

I am really impressed with what you have done here. I have a very large project coming up that just may turn out much better if I follow what you have done.

Thanks,

Wayne

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Nice looking hill Marty. With a touch of greenery, some sheep and a couple of miles of slate walling it'll look just like Wales.

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Wayne Williams wrote: Marty,
Could you please elaborate a little more on the way you made up your mixture of goop?
I'll do my best Wayne... nothing scientific in it,

Like how much PVA to the amount of water, and how much paint to the amount of water.
I've been using about 250g of pollyfilla, maybe 20 - 40g of Diggers Oxide colouring (a Chocolate Brown powder), a good 80 - 100mls of PVA and then water to make it up to about 800 - 100ml of milky Goop. If the mixture isn't runny enough it doesn't seem to get into the cloth as well.
Be careful not to add water later on as the mixture starts to go off, it will take days, nay weeks, to dry... how do I know this!


How long did you soak the cloth in the mixture?
With the mixture so runny I just dip it in, turn it over and dip again and then run the cloth through my fingers to a) remove the excess, b) ensure an even coverage and c) to enjoy the process more.

Did your mixture fill in all of the little holes that are in the plaster cloth?
Yes and no, mostly they appear full while its wet but as it dries some of the weave can come through and the holes open up, at this stage having some roughness to the dry  first layer helps subsequent layers of either cloth or just plaster "key" into the surface.

When you laid down the cloth on the mountain, did you smooth out the cloth, or just lay it down?
Definitely smoothed it down, that's half the fun and why T has to open the back door and turn on the outside tap for me :lol:  The rough shape  of the terrain that I am trying to achieve has already been carved, hacked, scraped and vacuumed out of the polystyrene below.The overlapped strips show through once the goop has dried but as I will use a less watery ground goop without the cloth as a final surface, sculpting the landforms, rocks, etc as I go, it doesn't matter.The number of cloth layers to do is something I'm not sure about, for the Pentrecourt Halt diorama and the Three Rivers test bed three and two layers respectively were used. This makes a very hard shell but also adds weight. I think this time I'll just try it with the original layer and plaster over the top.
If I were to do a second cloth layer I'd lay the strips at different angle to the original layer for strength.


I am really impressed with what you have done here. I have a very large project coming up that just may turn out much better if I follow what you have done.
give it a go, the materials don't break the bank and can be used around the house/layout for other things as well if it doesn't do what you want it to do.

Thanks, Always happy to help... Marty

Wayne

phill
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That looks excellent, really comeing along. Have you access into the hill incase of problems?.

Phill

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Very impressed Marty and am looking forward to the next stage.   Even without vegetation it looks good!

Ken

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if the piccy above the hill/mountain is what you are doing,then you have done an excellent job,
if not , still an excellent job...

:doublethumb:lol::lol::cool:

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Great job on the hill,Marty.The brown plaster goop will provide you with a first class base for your greenery!
  Can't wait 'til I get to the goop stage with my layout!!!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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:thumbs .................... now that hill is looking brill, Marty! :doublethumb

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Thanks so much Marty for your full description of the process.

I'm not sure it will work for what I want. The pollyfilla may price it out for me. I have 1500 lineal feet by 10 inches wide of plaster cloth to apply. That sounds like an awfully lot of pollyfilla to buy, but then so was the plaster cloth! :shock:

Thanks Again Marty!

Wayne

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Wayne,plaster of paris is reasonably priced,or you can even use finishing plaster well thinned
cheaper still.( the stuff builders use on inside walls )you might have a diff name for it .

:hmm:thumbs:lol::lol::cool:

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Marty wrote:


... and through the "to be constructed" road bridge at the up end of Henllan the signal box and goods shed...





Its been nice catching up and I really like this picture

John

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If you don't want to buy cloth you can also use kitchen roll. Kitchen roll and finishing plaster, can't get much cheaper.

Crackin' bit of hill work Marty.

Cheers
Dave

Last edited on Mon Jan 11th, 2010 05:54 pm by

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First class stuff, Marty. No surprises there! I just love that brown!

Mike

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Marty, what make is that signal box, it looks great.

Ken

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Ken wrote:
Marty, what make is that signal box, it looks great.

Ken


I think its a Hornby - Skaledale model Ken

John

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Ken wrote: Marty, what make is that signal box, it looks great.

Ken


Hornby Lyddle End range to be precise Ken, my mistake in the earlier post John.

http://www.kernowmodelrailcentre.com/product/19782/N8083_Hornby_Lyddle_End_Signal_Box

I'll be using a fair bit of it as place holders until the scratchbuilding can be done.

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Ah yes, OO Skaldale - N Lyddle End!

Marty
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Yup, although, interestingly enough, and just to confuse us, the box name is Skaledale Junction.

Marty
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ElDavo wrote: If you don't want to buy cloth you can also use kitchen roll. Kitchen roll and finishing plaster, can't get much cheaper.

Crackin' bit of hill work Marty.

Cheers
Dave

Thanks Dave, might have to give the finishing plaster a go as I've got a fair bit to do, not as much as Wayne mind, and it could get a bit expensive using pollyfilla.

Marty
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owen69 wrote: if the piccy above the hill/mountain is what you are doing...


The valley and tunnel in the photo above the first picture is on the other side of my hill Owen, I am modelling it but just haven't completed the de-snowing process yet.

Photos in due course once "browned".

cheers

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I don't know if this information is of use but here goes:

There is a product in the UK called "101 Lightweight Filler".
Polyfilla do a similar product but much more expensive.
The "101" brand can be bought in pound type shops and the like.
I've not used it for modelling because my stuff is usually mailed but I have used it for interior decorating purposes.
The main thing is, it's cheap and lightweight.

Don't know if they export it or if there are similar products overseas.

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I have to keep reminding myself that your work is 'N' size, Marty.

I live just a few miles from Henllan, North Wales.

Marty
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:thumbs I'm still having fun. Hopefully, once complete, the layout will look Welsh...

Only a couple of miles away.:thudNow he tells me!!!

Visiting rights when I come to take photos in September?

Marty
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ddolfelin wrote: I don't know if this information is of use but here goes:

There is a product in the UK called "101 Lightweight Filler".
Polyfilla do a similar product but much more expensive.
The "101" brand can be bought in pound type shops and the like.
I've not used it for modelling because my stuff is usually mailed but I have used it for interior decorating purposes.
The main thing is, it's cheap and lightweight.

Don't know if they export it or if there are similar products overseas.


thanks dd,

I'll potter around our mega-hardware and see what I can find.

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A FEW miles, Marty.
Probably 9 as the crow flies and 12 if the roads are passable.

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Here is some reference for you.

The newly thatched pub in Henllan and imaginative use for an oil tank in Henllan.
Poor pictures because they were taken at dusk.





Copyright DD 2009 Use as you like.

Last edited on Wed Jan 13th, 2010 04:35 am by ddolfelin

Marty
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Legend :Happy

that Pub is a must.

Wouldn't have one of the post office would you?

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I have always used gesso, or builders plaster over torn up old shirts or any kind of cloth I could get hold of. Has always worked for me. When I first started using this there was no such thing as Polyfilla and it's derivatives.

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There isn't much of a Post Office last time I went through.
However, I'll take pics next time.
(I'm not going anywhere at the moment - frozen up and snowed in).

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Robert wrote: I have always used gesso, or builders plaster over torn up old shirts or any kind of cloth I could get hold of. Has always worked for me. When I first started using this there was no such thing as Polyfilla and it's derivatives.
Is "gesso" the stuff artists use to seal their canvas or coat the paper before painting Bob.  It's something I've heard of but never actually asked what it is !  I suppose it's one of those questions you never ask in case people just raise their eyebrows and ask how long you've been let out for !!!

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Here you go:

http://www.aisling.net/journaling/gesso.htm

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Thanks Ddolfelin. :thumbs  Now I'll never have to guess(o) again !!!  :pedal:pedal:pedal

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I think I'm right in saying that the gesso that Bob is using is a Spanish thing and more or less the equivalent to our builder's plaster. Artists guesso (which I use) is a completely different animal.

No doubt Bob will correct me if I'm wrong :exclam:exclam 

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Ah - I see.  I'll wait for Bob to explain before I go and buy 5 gallons !!!

Years ago in UK, I used Artex - it did virtually the same thing as plaster but was very slightly "flexible" - not quite the word but it wasn't at all brittle and was much lighter than plaster.

Plaster of paris sets in seconds, is very heavy, and very brittle.  Something like the modern "multi-finish" plaster might be similar - it's "sticky" and "gives" a little rather than cracking.

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...and that, I think Peter, is the key, whatever you use should be light, "flexible", sticky and cheap.

The polyfilla is all but cheap, especially with the addition of PVA to help with the flexible and sticky.

I've got more to do on the "hill" and I've run out of Polyfilla, so more experimenting with a different "ground goop" recipe to come. :thumbs

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I don't think I got around to saying how good your mountain looks Marty - I guesso I was side-tracked !!

It looks great and just like those huge rolling hills folding down to the coastal plain so often seen in Wales (and other parts).  I love the "smoothness" which gives no clue at all that it's a model.

Great stuff. :thumbs:thumbs

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Thanks Petermac,
Looking forward to the next bit.
More as it comes to hand.

Marty
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Newcastle Emlyn Cassette System

So… it’s time to work out how to add, remove and store trains on the layout.

The cassette system concept diagram… (Simples really but clarifies what the plan is) 

 
Colorbond steel U-channel cut to length, cork trackbed glued down inside U-channel. No track as yet as need to get accurate and reliable alignment system sorted first.

Cassette designed to take N scale Tender Engine and three Collett coaches or Tank engine and 10 or so wagons and brake van.

Here’s the current state of play. 19mm x 42mm (1 x 2) softwood guides on either side, leaving a gap somewhere in the middle for grasping of cassette for removal/addition.
Small brass cupboard ball catches either side for “clip-in” alignment and wired to carry the current. Obviously the timber riser underneath the closer end will need to be wide enough to cater for the catch plate screws.





... and closer




The bulldog clip method, while practical, was a bit untidy.

The spring clip method would mean finding some springy metal.

The questions are…

1) how to attach the brass catch to the colorbond metal? Scrape off the paint and epoxy glue? Or solder? The metal is too thin to screw.

2) Alignment template? No need to get the brass catches on U-channel spot on every time as the track will be added after but it’s got to be pretty close.

3) Any thoughts, maybe there is another way?

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Marty, somewehere in the Index, is a description of making a cassette by using two pieces of right angle aluminium fixed to a piece of wood.  The angles are _l    l_  so as to make rails which can then easily be wired.  The wooden base makes it easier to go on with attaching it to your frame.  If I haven't made myself clear, I can draw a mud map and email it to you, or someone may remember where the pictures are.

Last edited on Wed Jan 20th, 2010 12:42 am by MaxSouthOz

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I've tried a few more categories in the index Marty, but I can't put my finger on it.

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That's OK mate, I know the one you mean.

Good thought, I'll see if I can make one up for testing.

cheers

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Would electrical type nuts and bolts serve your purpose, Marty?

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Expand a bit ddolfelin, if you would?

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My only concern - well, 2 of them actually - would be that the ball catches would be too strong and clipping the cassette into them would de-rail the stock and secondly, because of that "strength" would epoxy hold the catch to what is actually a "flexible" piece of metal ?

You could look at the bulldog and aluminium angle idea Marty but don't mount the angles on the top of the baseboard.  As long as both bits are connected to the track electrically, they can be placed anywhere you like.  Afterall, they're only there for a quick easy method of aligning the track.

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Thanks Peter, all good thoughts.

The "strength" of the ball catches can be adjusted, there are small grub screws to do this. However, I do agree with your derailment and Epoxy/ flexible metal concerns, they had occured to me too. Build and test I guess.

You've just given me another idea for alignment though, not sure if I can explain it, or, for that matter, build it but sort of a combination of the angle strip, bull dog clip and spring metal... (without the bulldog clip) by extending the angle strip beyond the edge of the cassette it should be possible to slot them into a locating mount on the baseboard made of another bit of angle and a spring metal.

Something else to build and test.

cheers

 

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"Expand" OK.

Like most people I have a container full of little nuts and bolts that will never find a use!
It struck me that attaching the female part of the catch would be very easy after drilling appropriately, using a washer if necessary.

Frankly, I can't see epoxy doing the job long term.

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Ah, got ya... yes, superb idea.

I'll add it to the list.

I do like this forum :lol:

edit: oh, and sorry, couldn't see the wood for the trees. :oops:

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Hmmm, another option, sort of combines the angle iron and spring steel.





Sketch up drawing... thanks Matt for pointing out the wonders of this software.

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Whilst that's a good system Marty - a variation of one that one of our members has already used (sorry - can't remember who :oops:), I still have my doubts about slotting the cassette into the sprung connectors.  If they're too slack, you'd risk losing continuity and if too tight, the very light "N" gauge stock could still de-rail.

The similar system I saw on here used sprung wires sliding onto side plates attached to the cassette base - far less like "brute force". :roll::roll::roll:

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I posted a photo of the end of a cassette system, which would probably explain better than words, Marty, here it is :-



At our local club we used aluminum angle for the whole of the cassette, not just the end as the above shows.

If you don't use bulldog clips for alignment, take the word of someone with bitter experience and use small brass bolts. Its the only way to ensure accurate alignment 100% of the time. Any other method (including the one you show) will sooner or later allow mis-alignment and a de-rail.


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Many thanks Peter and Jeff.

More grist for the mill.

Jeff, did you find any significant drop in electrical conductivity using aluminium angle? Is it worth using brass or copper angle instead?

cheers

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Have you been waiting since January 21st for an answer, Marty?

Just to say I've posted some more Henllan reference pics. (they are in the Gallery but I expect someone will kindly get them out and put them on the thread).

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A new arrival at Newcastle Emlyn - 7816 Frilsham Manor.

Ixon's Manor's have finally arrived in their new form.

Cookham Manor and Frilsham Manor have been added to the stable at Newcastle Emlyn.

Here's 7816 at the head of a down special passing Pentrecourt Halt on the way to Newcastle Emlyn



 



Tender mounted motor powering the loco driving wheels via a cardan shaft. Detail is fantastic. Bits and bobs (including Bob and Evan) still to be added.
She motors along very nicely.
The Cardan shaft is quite noisy at the moment but should quieten with wear.
She found all the dodgy bits of my track laying, had to get the fettlers out to straighten a couple of sections and now apart from one set of points stays on the track.

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New locos with finer wheels nowdays finds dodgy track very easy - just like cameras do when shooting down the track.

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yeah, they may be scale size wheels but they produce prototype crashes!!!

:mutley:lol::cool:

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The manors look really smart Marty

I Forsee a future header photo there

Brian

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They are very smart HP, should be even better once the extra's are added and she's had a bit of weathering.

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Lovely model, just think, 5-10 years ago you'd have been pleased with that level of detail in 'OO'. [Or at least I would have been...]

I like the first shot especially.

Doug

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Well that's 2 potential headers Doug because I can't make my mind up between the first and second shot - they're both really good Marty. :thumbs

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Lovely,lovely loco......I wants one!!! I've got a Manor body kit to work on,once I've got the show out of the way,with the nameplates for 7806 Cockington Manor,but I would LOVE an Ixion one.I've also got a Grange that I need to get name/number plates for.
(I can't wait to get back to building locos!!!)
Another header photo in the bag,Marty!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Western Yeoman

A very nice present from a very nice sister, Bachmann Farish Western Yeoman D1035 in BR Green has found a home on the Newcastle Emlyn roster and is seen in the video working a holiday special through Henllan heading for the terminus.


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I love those photos, Marty. Header material for sure.
Good to see a glimpse of the layout in the video. Thank heaven for nice sisters, eh?

Mike

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Nice video Marty! Is that you talking? Funny, it doesn't sound like your typing! :shock: :shock: :shock:

Wayne :mutley

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Finally, despite a self imposed modelling ban, or at least a partial modelling ban, work has recommenced on Newcastle Emlyn.

Making the Greenhills module for the show and travelling to the show itself necessarily put work on the home layout on the backburner for a while....

... but 5 months... sheesh :roll:

OK, so... the October tree project started it... thanks Alan :thumbs... I wanted to join in and make some more trees but once made they can't be planted until the understory is complete.

... and considering the current understory is just plain brown earth there is a little way to go.

At the risk of boring anyone that has read Marty's N- gauge trees project here's a repeat...

This hill needs some vegetation.



... and this is the real thing... and I mean the real thing, I was standing on the track bed of the disused Newcastle Emlyn Branch :thumbs



It's a bit overgrown, just a bit :mutley, but a good representation of the surrounding woodland none-the-less.



... and around the tunnel mouth.





First the really steep parts of the hill, actually the other side of the hill shown above, where the rock faces were supposed to be, were painted.
Acrylics, mostly Jo Sonja's but other brands from here and there, black, linen, rose, duck blue, an orangy-yellow and white, mixed randomly on a pallet and slapped in a mostly random fashion over the brown.
Mostly random as some attempt was made to highlight the shadows with darker shades and accentuate the exposed areas with lighter shades.
Once dry the sticky out bits where highlighted with dry brushed white, yellow and linen.
The rocks are still a bit to shiney to my mind and need a dusting of pastel powders to tone them down a bit.z

The base layer of vegetation is woodland scenics and Heki scatter dusted over a painted on mix of 50/50 water/PVA.

Ballast is washed local sand, nudged into place with a paintbrush, drizzled with Isopropyl Alcohol and then bonded with drops of 50/50 water/pva mix.

The tree is one from a previous project, dumped on for effect.



A work in progress...

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All looks darned good to me!

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Thanks Fidge, having fun anyway :thumbs

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Looking great, Marty.  :thumbs   The vegetation really makes a difference.

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Gee that looks good!! :thumbs

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It does doesn't it Max, it's been brown for way too long, more to come.

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You must be very pleased with that, Marty.

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Very happy so far Peter, definitely the railway in the landscape I was looking for.

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Marty wrote:
Very happy so far Peter, definitely the railway in the landscape I was looking for.
And what a landscape this is going to be!
This is superb modelling Marty, I keep looking at your progress and it's going to be stunning when it's finished.
The rocks and mountains look great. Just like the real thing!
Talk soon.

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Thanks Frank,

The DIY floor planks arrived today, while I'm looking forward to finally getting into laying them progress may slow on the layout again!!!

But I keep dreaming.

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isn`t that the way of this hobby ,? you are on a roll going great ,then up pop the mundane jobs that stop all.
never mind mate soon be back to the fun jobs again..

:thumbs:lol::cool:

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Hello Marty,

                   Excellent land-scaping, mate. Those rock-surfaces look so natural and the vegetation is such a nice contrast. You should be very pleased with the results you've achieved :pathead,

                                                                                          Kind Regards,

                                                                                     Michael Thornberry.

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That is really looking good Marty, coming on a treat :thumbs

Last edited on Tue Oct 12th, 2010 03:35 pm by

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No how did i miss this thread :hmm. Anyhw it is starting to look good mate, shame the video link aint there any more.  Love the scenery your starting, better than brown.

Now you must understand, jobs around the house come's 2nd and the layout is a deffo 1st mate. I am sure having met your lovely wife she will understand, just tell her mate. I would but i shall not be seeing her now, :thumbs, so its up to you. Go on tell her, i stand behind you for support :pathead:mutley.

Phill

 

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Whahaayyy!!! Love the greenery,Marty!! I can see a bigger version of your Pentrecourt Halt taking shape! Don't rush,take your time and enjoy it...we'll all just sit back and savour it as the scenics progress!
   Lovely Jubbly!!!

:doublethumb
Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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That looks brilliant Marty. :thumbs

When I saw that frist shot of everything brown, I thought that looked very good and spent some time studying the land forms.  Now, after your "random" painting and added greenery, it looks absolutely like the real thing. :thumbs:thumbs  How can highly skilled people achieve such results by always doing things "randomly" or "throwing a bit of this or that at it" :twisted::twisted::twisted::twisted::twisted::twisted::twisted:

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Thanks Peter,

Spending time detailing the Pentrecourt Halt diorama gave me a much better understanding of the concepts of building up the vegetation from the ground up... and a confidence that I was able to produce something that pleased me.

I'm deliberately telling myself not to detail the lower levels of vegetation on this section of the hillside as there are still several layers (undergrowth and trees) to go on yet which will hide a lot of the ground as it is now.

Thus a broadbrush approach. Boldly... where no man has gone before :mutley:mutley

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May the Force be With You.    NANU  NANU   :chicken

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Could be useful for reaching those tricky bits at the back of the layout... look mum no hands :lol:

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Bracken and understory... and a bit more detail around the waterfall area.

Building up from the base layer of vegetation the plan is create a representation of the bracken and understory shrubs and trees on the hillside. There is also a smattering of twigs, bark and bits and pieces that one might find on the forest floor.
Over the top of all is another scattering of woodland scenics fine turf in two colours to give the impression of moss and lichen growing over everything.

The base material is lichen from a bag of the stuff that has been lying around the workbench for 20 years, lots of diluted PVA glue and then once dryish, spray glue for the scatter to stick to.

In the first photo there are a few addition rocks still waiting for the glue to dry.



In the second photo, more scatterings and pattings and the rocks have been painted in an effort to make them blend in.
The top of the hill has also started getting the makings of pasture and fallow fields.
The 14XX, possibly 5819, works upgrade with the morning goods for Newcastle Emlyn.



Waterfall, hedges, trees, so much to do.

Bother spring cleaning :???:

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That's a good use for the lichen. Nice colours - I especially like the hints of bracken-brown throughout.

Mike

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That's very effective Marty :thumbs

Les
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Well if anyone needed proof that a 24000 mile trip does no harm to your modelling skills here it is. This is wonderful stuff Marty and like Mike I particularly like the differing colours you are blending in thereby building up the landscape from the ground up. Brilliant.:thumbs
Les

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What is it about these Australian modellers ?  They must have better light than we do ................................:roll:

Excellent Marty. :thumbs

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Well done Marty

Your trip to Cornwall and Wales certainly gave you the minds eye view of the actual landscape of these areas.

Depending on the time of year the gorse bushes have tiny yellow flowers which can be recreated using that woodland scenics stuff that teases apart and you spread it across the bush.

Brian

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Just dropped in and had to stay for awhile to enjoy your smashing model layout Marty I love it!
Peco have just released some neat gorse bushes they look the part with flowers. Of course Its not the same as doing your own thing.
regards,Derek

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Marty,
        Love that last photo!! Have you weathered the 14xx,or is it just my eyes playing tricks?

:pathead:pathead:pathead

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Petermac wrote: What is it about these Australian modellers ?  They must have better light than we do ................................:roll:

Excellent Marty. :thumbs


Perhaps it's that light at the end of the tunnel......................?:roll:

Ken

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Marty I remember my dear old mum telling me that when the gorse is in bloom, it's time for love!
I'd make or buy some of those, if I were you.

Mike

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Yes John, she's weathered, chalk dust and weathering powders.

There's a patch on the right hand side of the smoke box, under the boiler, that needs "reducing". When the camera zoomed in it looked like rust had taken a serious hold.

Marty
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Thanks guys,

There WERE a lot of photos taken while in Wales, hopefully I can do them justice.

I've got some yellow scatter somewhere and will give the gorse a go.

And the light IS better here :thumbs.

phill
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Astounding work as always Marty.

Phill

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cheers Phil,

Having fun doing it and just want to get on with it. 

But stuck at work now... and timber flooring to lay on saturday and an SES recce to plan out a camp site on Sunday morning means I've got to wait... sigh.

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My best 'Gorse' tip.
Dip clumping into a solution of pva and yellow acrylic and hang 'upside down' to drain off.
If the mixture is right, the yellow goes to the very tips of the material.

Marty
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:shock: thank you Sir, much obliged.

I'll give it a go. :thumbs

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Hi Marty
Just been catching up on your thread. Some excellent progress and that tunnel looks very effective and as though it really needs to be there. One of the joys of N gauge I suppose in that you can reflect some substantial natural features in a small space. The rock work is excellent.

Bob(K)

Last edited on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 07:14 am by Bob K

Marty
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4 January 2011

Progress update from the holidays

Finally managed to get a serious go at the layout over the Christmas and New Year holidays.

The forum tree construction project has a lot to answer for. For those of you that remember 35+ trees are being made up for the Newcastle Emlyn layout, particularly for the hillside above the Altycefan tunnel in the picture above.

Several were completed and along with some home made hedges, put into place against the backboard at the top of the hill to see if they were looking "right".
It was then that it became apparent that before the trees could be permanently "planted" on the layout the backscene was going to have to be completed. Either painted or the photo montages from the trip to Wales made up and stuck on.

It looked like this and lets face it, had looked like this for far too long:



So, was painting an option, always inspired by MikeC's work it was worth having another go. Some more brushes and paints fell into the shopping trolley at the nearest hardware megastore while on a trip for something needed around the house. The "how to paint a backscene" topic was re-read and a small section of the backscene was attacked to see if it was worth the effort.



After consultation with Tracy and consideration of the fact that the practice was actually quite enjoyable. The bullet was bitten and painting a backscene begun.

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The next time you go to Melbourne, stop over for a couple of days armed with your paint brushes please !!

Marty
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:mutley Going to have to work on my HALO (High Alititude Low Opening) techniques then. 30,000 ft and going... DOWNNNNnn.

Put the trees and hedges back up again and have another look.
Creating a backscene from a montage of the photos taken in Wales is well within my capabilities, painting is another thing altogether. Hmmm, looks OK to me...



Here we go, here we go, here we go...

From this, bare backboard and test bit....



To a plain sky blue across the entire board, including painting over the test bit...



How's that look with the trees and new hedges... a darn sight better than the brown wood, could leave it at that but once begun..



White washed cloud/haze, whiter at the horizon and bluer higher in the sky... could leave it there too...



But it's holidays and this is really a lot of fun... 2 days worth so far.

 

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Marty you're cooking with gas! The whole thing - 2D backscene and 3D scenery - looks marvellous.

Mike

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It does, Marty.  :thumbs

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Love the trees:doublethumb

Marty
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Thanks Mike and Max...

Encouraged by the results achieved there was no stopping me... 8 hours a day for 3 days trying to get further clouds to look like clouds... several attempts in fact to get clouds to look like clouds.
Each failed attempt requiring a repaint of the sky blue and a new begining until finally a Eureka moment and it all came together into something that was hopefully close enough.





and



Any constructive thoughts welcome.

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Congratulations Marty, you have achieved a superb result :doublethumb

Marty
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3801 wrote: Love the trees:doublethumb


Thanks Warren,

More about them in the Marty's N scale trees thread in the monthly forum project if you are interested.

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Janner wrote: Congratulations Marty, you have achieved a superb result :doublethumb

And I agree with Johns' statement  :thumbs

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Wow!  That looks amazing, Marty.  Great clouds!  Tick, VG - Elephant stamp!  :thumbs

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Marty

You have done really well with the backscenes they look superb folowing Mikes tutorial and experimenting you have produced a marvelous result.

A Cornish Chough stamp for what you have done there

Brian

Marty
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Shouldn't that be a Chug stamp HP?:mutley :pedal

Cheers

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Speechless

That backboard looks sooooooooooooooooooooo real :thumbs

As you have been awarded nearly everyaward going, I feel that I should award you a 1st class Devon Cream Tea :cheers

Marty
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Thanks again guys, I must admit that I'm pleased with the progress so far and it's been a huge amount of fun!!

Something else that has been fun and has been driven by the development of the backscene is work on the Pencader and Pentrecourt Halt section of the board.
Wanting now to try my hand at a bit of landscape painting it became further apparent that completing the 3D landforms in front of the painted backscene would dictate where hills and fields could be seen between the trees.

Before the holidays it looked like this:



and now it looks like this:




In the distance the hillside and tunnel that will form the view block between the layout and the cassette train storage system.
Slightly closer the rail bridge over the River Teifi and near left the level area next to the track where Pentrecourt Halt (MK II) will go.

The bridge has mdf piers covered with scalescenes grey brick and the beginnings of a scratchbuilt plasticard girder.



This shot just encourages me to get on with it...



cheers

 

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That last one is just great. Something to be really proud of, Marty. A Queensland cane toad stamp has been awarded too!

Mike

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Very impressive Marty.

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MikeC wrote: That last one is just great. Something to be really proud of, Marty. A Queensland cane toad stamp has been awarded too!

Mike

Now Mike, Marty is surely not going to be impressed with a cane toad stamp considering the pest they are?:twisted:

Marty
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I must admit Sol, Alan's Devonshire tea stamp is the best so far :mutley

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I'm with Mike on this one Marty.  That last shot is just superb. :pathead

The clouds look so realistic it's hard to believe what you started with.  When you've been to do Sol's painting, hows about a short break in France .......................(I'll pay for the paint :roll:)

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Good work, Marty.

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Excellent results Marty. The terrain looks really good too, as though the railway has carved its way through the landscape.

Bob(K)

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