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Birkenhead Woodside - Members Personal Layouts. - Model Railway Layouts. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Tue Nov 9th, 2021 08:48 pm
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Dave C
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Keith

Good to see a bit more of how your layout hangs together, far more involved that it initially appears. Still intrigued as to where some of the tunnels and underpasses disappear to and where they pop back up again. Well engineered and, dare I say it, planned out. It just goes to show just how much trackwork can be realistically placed into a limited space without the use of ridiculously tight curves.

Well done - keep it up, and no need to rush to get the scenery done. Remember, a layout is NEVER finished!

Cheers
Dave

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 Posted: Wed Nov 10th, 2021 02:50 pm
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Woodside
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S’mae Peter

As to clearance between levels, put simply ….extremely limited, between 3.5 and 4 inches. Wouldn’t do for most folk, but despite my six foot frame I do have quite small hands – and so I can get at all parts of the lower levels ….most awkward, as I discovered recently is just beyond the points at the entrance to the fiddle yard …..had to remove all the locos from around the yard turntable, in order to access a derailed engine on the approach to the yard  – had that not been enough I can still get access to the back of the fiddle yard from behind that baseboard – but that involves shifting all the stuff piled under the layout.

Gradients – I decided early on to avoid the really steep climbs I had on my last layout back in the early 60s, and came up with the idea of a spiral. The main line begins the downward run to the fiddle yard immediately after marshalling yard junction, and continues with the storage loops under Woodside station, and then on down with the approach to the fiddle yard. As I wanted Hooton station to be on the flat – so shunting in the goods depot and the station was feasible – there is a slight climb into Hooton Station, followed by another similar climb away from the station to meet the main line again. Difficult to describe, but obvious. The steepest gradient is on the initial ramp down, this is roughly 1 in 35 at the beginning on the bend and eases somewhat to 1 in 50, once in the tunnel it is a much gentler slope on the loops, followed by a similar 1 in 50 for the run down to the fiddle yard.

Keith



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 Posted: Wed Nov 10th, 2021 03:17 pm
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Woodside
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S’mae John

I usually do keep some of the coaches for the Birkenhead – Chester services together during the day, but during the rush hour I normally add an extra coach. Same goes for the Helsby services. The long distance services are just marshalled as and when needed – haven’t got the space to store 5 and 6 coach sets on the layout for the time required. On all services the rakes are reduced to meet the storage limitations of the layout – rush hour services from Helsby could be up to eight coaches in the late 50s early 60s…. I manage with 3 or very occasionally 4!

As to time – I can manage real time in the off-peak periods, but with no freight movements. For rush hour the clock has to run really slowly. Normally the clock is running slowly or very slowly – off peak is when I get the freight moving.  Never even thought about a fast clock – I dread to think what might happen, more likely not happen!

Keith



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 Posted: Wed Nov 10th, 2021 03:35 pm
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Woodside
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S’mae Dave

Just think of it as a simple point to point with a loop around to an intermediate station on the way. The only ‘plan’ I had was to get as much track as I could in the space available – in that I think I have just about succeeded!

I will get around to the green bits eventually, and you are absolutely right a – a layout is never finished, there is always something that can be improved ….like my operating skills, green bits skills to name but two…

Keith



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 Posted: Fri Jan 28th, 2022 11:40 am
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Woodside
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With the never ending unseasonable weather for most of the time up to Christmas allowing for lots more outdoor activities, and consequently significantly less time in the loft, little progress to report. Finally winter arrived, and that Standard 5 seen in post 624 has taken over three months since arriving in Hooton just to progress to the fiddle yard approach, so the priority should have been concentrated on getting the trains moving. However somewhat out of character I had also been thinking about the green bits, but true to form the trains have now started running, and green bits will once again have to wait.

The 3F makes a change as motive power for the 17.22 Helsby to Rock Ferry service, 17.49/17.53 Hooton – which has terminated in the goods loop on time at 18.06, and will then proceed as empty stock to the coach sidings at Woodside – the only way I can handle the odd peak hour services which terminate at Rock Ferry. Meanwhile a Stanier tank passes on the down line with 17.39 express service from Chester, due Woodside at 18.07, calling at Hooton and Rock Ferry.

 

Apologies for the slightly iffy photo, difficult to get the camera and the cameraman in the right position, I am trying to get locations which give the impression that the layout is more finished than it is. A second peak time fast service follows at 18.00 from Chester, arriving Woodside at 18.28, but this calls at Capenhurst, Bebington and New Ferry, Rock Ferry only – one of the few local services which does not stop at Hooton ... I fear that I have started rambling on again…..

Just going back to that standard 5 on the Shrewsbury train…. normally passenger trains heading for the ex-GWR route to Shrewsbury and on to Paddington and /or South Wales had the old faithful 2-6-4T for the short run to Chester. In Chester a far more impressive loco, not necessarily GWR, was then coupled up to the other end of the train, sometimes with additional coaches, for the run South. The Paddington bound trains normally waited until Shrewsbury or Wolverhampton for additional coaches, and from there a GWR loco suitable for a Paddington arrival. Usual turnaround time for Paddington bound services in Chester was 6 - 9 minutes – for this Shrewsbury train however there was a 14 minute wait, other Shrewsbury services had a longer wait. That is just about enough time for the engine from Birkenhead to be turned while a couple more coaches are added. So it is reasonable for me to run the standard 5, possibly the best looking of the Standard locos (especially in green), from Woodside. The Standard 5 remained a regular visitor to Birkenhead even after 6C lost the home based examples, with engines from Shrewsbury and Chester often seen on my regular weekend visits.

Here’s hoping that 2022 finally sees off Covid, and life can return to normal ….whatever the new ‘normal’ looks like….. continued on-line shopping, less visiting the shops, perhaps…..

Keith



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 Posted: Sun Jan 30th, 2022 03:29 pm
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Dave C
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Good to hear from you again Keith.

I think, like you, many of us have been busy elsewhere other than hitting our respective layouts. While the weather has been so calm recently (until the past day or so that is) it's been a shame to be stuck in the train room. I also seem to be suffering from the same complaint as yourself - there's always something else to do that (appears) to take priority - ah! but who's priority we ask, probably not yours and most certainly not mine! But other jobs have been put higher up my list and they had to be done, if only to appease SHMBO.

I think we're all guilty of taking selective views of our layouts to hide/camouflage those areas that are still in need of attention. I really must do something about it - roll on the "proper" winter weather; bring it on! - then we can get back to where we ought to be and doing what we ought to be doing, putting some power to the tracks or building something. Anything other than gardening!

Keep up the good work on the timetable running.

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