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Barry Miltenburg
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So, the time will soon arrive when a move of house will yield a purpose-built railway room and a new "Yarslow" layout will take life.  (see Personal layouts section for details of the existing Yarslow).

The room will be about 26ft x 16ft.  Apologies for the vagueness but it has yet to be built and whilst I want that space, full site surveys etc will be needed to determine what is possible.

My question is this - how big is too big?

Designed in Enrail, here is the plan (about version 25!!)



I am still in BR(NE) Region in the early 1960's but I fancy a bit of LMR invasion because I love the latest range of ex-LMS and ex-MR locomotives that have recently emerged.  It is, of course, 4mm scale, Peco code 75.

The top right hand corner leads down to low level storage for about 50 trains on a large return loop so trains going down come back up facing the same way.  The storage loops are sectioned to hold 3, 4 or 5 trains each and sit along the central spine and the lower wall.  A train going to storage goes down the gradient moving right-to-left along the top wall and then swings round to run under the branch through station where the loops begins.  The loops then bend around under Trinity Square and then end under the pink section bottom right.  The up gradient runs back up to the top right hand corner and is therefore much longer than the down gradient.  Calculations suggest about 1 in 80.  Tests have proved that the loco fleet will handle 8 coach trains or 40 wagons on this without difficulty.

This is really a small plan built big with the addition of a city terminus (Freezer's "Minories" slighty modified).  The main station at the top started life as Lincoln Central but has been trimmed.  It still has a Lincoln/Boston feel to it which I like.

Operation is analogue, cab control, with just 4 controllers - main1, main2, Yarslow/branch and Trinity Square.  The timetable is, in essence, a number of events (stopping freight shunts, local passenger halts, branch train runs etc) surrounded by a load of trains that run up, round and down again.  These include a range of C, D, E, F, H, J and K class freights, through and stopping passengers, suburban passenger trains (Trinity Square - Maidstone Lane - storage), parcels and engineering services.

Stopping freight and the branch freight move wagons around.  The parcels service will generate traffic for Trinity Square and a C class "vans" train runs from storage to TSq.  See my YouTube video on the Yarslow channel for the way I run my stopping freights.

The layout has been designed in terms of layout, control and operation as a one-man-show.  A lot of the ground work like signals, point motor wiring, scenic bits, buildings has been tried out on the existing Yarslow layout and I have 42 of the trains already, albeit in shortened format to fit the space I have now.

I am seeking advice from those who have built large layouts on the good/bad/ugly aspects of a project of this size.  What are the pitfalls?  Where is it all going to go wrong?

Within reason, cost is not a factor as I have a lot of the trains, I am collecting ordanance for the project and the timber will be absorbed into the cost of the room.  (9mm surfaces supported every 12 inches by 2x1 softwood.  Baseboard height about 40 inches for a lovely "lineside" eye level viewing position).

If you think that I'm just plain mad, do let me know before they start digging foundations...........

Last edited on Mon May 15th, 2017 01:57 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Back in the 1980s I had an N gauge loft layout 25'x17' in an "L" shape, a continuous loop round the outer edge, with an almost scale Bournemouth west terminus in the long "leg" Platforms could take 12 coaches plus loco, had to reduce the carriage sidings somewhat though. Used 7 controllers. Never got finished though, I got made redundant and had to move house.

I mostly used kitchen base units, cupboards and drawers as support so plenty of storage space under. Over those I had 2" square timbers supporting fibreboard. Nowadays  I tend to use insulation foam (e.g. Celotex) as a surface, lightweight but rigid.

It was generally referred to as "Up Aloft" or "Upper Loft".

Verdict:- not mad, just ambitious.

BCDR
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Hi Barry,

I don't build big ones as I don't have the space, but I operate on some really big ones as an operating guest, and have recently been on a number of layout tours to see some basement empires and listen to some of the issues the owners have identified. The club I have just joined has a fixed layout about double what you are proposing.

With an approximate 26 feet x 16 feet you have around 100 linear feet of operations (eyeballed from the diagram).

One man operation then. With DC. If you went to 36 x 20 feet it would be lot more accommodating.

With that much space I'd go for a dumbbell (with return loops top and bottom right) and a central peninsula on the left hand side to eliminate any duck-unders. I'd also not have any scenic partitions, and go DCC radio control. With a layout height of 40" your storage tracks will be at around 28". Go big and they can be at the same height as the layout. There is also something to be said for a separate room for the storage tracks and workshop with access through a wall.

Nigel


Barry Miltenburg
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Nigel - you should really meet my wife!!

I would love to get to 36ft x 20ft but I have so concede that there is a point where, for the sake of domestic harmony,  I think it might be just too big.  That's half of her Alpaca field gone and no room for the chickens!!!

At my time of life and with the age/size of the loco fleet, DCC is out of reach although I have costed conversion to chip & sound for the whole lot.  This is not a budget project but by the same token, I am not Pete Waterman.

Removing the duck-unders is an idea I toyed with given that none of us is getting any younger but the height chosen will mitigate some of this.

Essentially, I am happy with the plan, the concept of the layout in terms of levels, storage, stations, technology, operational potential etc - all I really don't know is what I don't know.  All my layouts have been 12 x 8 max so this really is unknown territory.  I have been involved with huge club layouts which created problems regarding maintenance but to be fair, they were pulled out and put away every week so I might be worrying over nothing.

All advice is very welcome.

Barry

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Hi Barry,

You're constrained by the chikins then.

26 by 16 feet still gives you room for return loops (or even a helix) in the corners and a 3 foot doorway (I just tried it in Corelscribble). So, 3 and a half concerns:

1. Getting from one side to the other in case of an emergency (derailments, shorts, chikins on the track, etc), as the area around the traverser is very tight.  3 foot minium between All the big layouts I'm involved with have an elevated section rather than a duck-under to get inside, or do not have them, but use loops at the ends (and peninsulas with loops).

2. Dropping down to 28" or even less to access the storage yard means a stool or chair. How about having the storage on an upper level at 50" or so? Or even having an upper level with scenery? Or have you got too much stock for that? Using a reasonable gradient of say 2% (1:50) and a 10" space between upper and lower levels would mean around 500" of run, 42 feet. Your calculation is 1:80, which means 67 feet of gradient.

3. I'd also go modular, at least for the baseboards. I was at a large basement empire last week where the owner had very recently built a fixed layout (with the framing done while the house was being built) after he and his wife had decided that this was definitely their last move. They are now moving after being in the house for 2 years, and the layout is being demolition-dismantled as it cannot be taken out in usable sections, and the estate agent (realtor over here) is somewhat dubious about selling a layout with attached house..

3.5. Sight lines. From wherever you are controlling, you need to be able to see all the track (unless you use cameras). Which means a dividing backdrop on the peninsular could be an issue.

I wasn't sure whether the traverser was on the upper or lower level. Looks like the upper level.

I still think this could be too big for the room as is.

DCC - I personally wouldn't bother with sound, just go with regular decoders. Especially as it looks like you will be buying some DCC ready LMR stock. DC with 4 controllers (is that 8 blocks?) and one man and the chikins...where are you planning on having the control panel(s)? Make it hybrid - DCC for the locomotives, analog for the points, signals, etc. That way you use what you have. And you can always get decoders for those anyway.

Nigel

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Thanks Nigel

You make some very good points that will go into my mixer for consideration.  Luckily, we are still a little way ahead of Day 1 so changes are not out of the question.

Your point about sight llines is interesting and not one I had spent a lot of time worrying about but I can see where you are coming from.

Despite being DC, I will have a number of "all stop" buttons around the place for the reasons you highlight.

The planning goes on........

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Thast's going to be big Barry !!!  :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:

I have around 30ft x 8ft available and it's daunting.  You may well be lucky enough to be able to allocate some "proper" time to it rather than grabbing the odd half hour now and again but, on your own, it's still a big hurdle.

My plan was to have a roundy-roundy with "offshoots" where I could play at shunting etc.  I could sit and watch the trains go round if that fitted my current mood or I could leave something trundling round whilst I did a bit of shunting in the yards.

"Mice and Men" springs to mind.....................the "end" will never be in sight.  It's a constant battle with dust and dirt before I can "play" and the investment in wire is enough to make a banker cry.

If that's "your thing" - good luck to you but,  for me, big layouts need manpower and there's not too much of that in rural France .............................

Barry Miltenburg
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Peter

Thanks for your warning.  The project cost is a real consideration - notsomuch the obvious numbers but the "hidden" ones.  I have budgets for the 50 odd trains and the rolling stock but, as you say, wire, ballast, cork sheeting, point rodding, static grass...  and so the list rolls on.  There is only so much I can do now.  I will have a very large crate of stuff to move into the room with, collected over the last few years - like 100 hand-made trees from Woodland Scenic kits (although I think I am going to be another 100 short???)

I am hoping that a dedicated room and track-cleaning engineers trains will do a lot of the onging cleaning, especially as I image that I will have a fair bit of time to dedicate to the project.  I may be wrong.

Keep the comments coming guys - this is all grist for old grey cells to work on.

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Hi Barry.

From experience as a professional model maker who has started many an epic for customers but never finished them because either the money run out, or the interest run out, or wifey stepped in or all three together.


Large layouts are all very well on paper because they don't take up any room neither do they break the bank so. I've always believed that anything up to 20 ft long is just fine where the light at the end of the tunnel is never that far away and encouraging progress can be seen at the end of each day.


Also, operating is less complicated and quite manageable for just one operator and, when thinks go wrong, which they do and which they will, then it's usually quite simple to track it down and get it fixed without the loss of hair !


However, I do like your scheme of things to come so take no bloody notice of me Barry and go ahead and build it  anyway!



Allan

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Allan

Many thanks for your professional input.

This thing will get built because I'm that sort of bloody minded chap but I am very mindful of the David Jenkinson's Little Long Drag story - both the planning stages and the final outcome.  He had everything sorted but seemed to get to a point where it just overwelmed him.

I acknowlegde that I am not DJ, will not scratchbuilt the entire wagon/coach fleet, nor will this layout rival Pendon (indeed the buildings will not be to your standard!!) but I like what I have achieved so far and as every layout has been a progression on the previous one, I am confident that this will work.

The plan has been on the workbench for about 5 years and has a working timetable from which I refined the length and style of trains, the track sectioning to allow trains to do what I want them to do (I am DC analogue), gradient profiles (with copious testing of locomotives and loads), wiring diagrams etc.  I have built a load of little test rigs to try out point motors, switching ideas, ballast colours, static grass applicators and......

Your comment regarding fault finding is a very real concern hence the "plan it to death" approach.  I will be using known technologies for cab control - DPDT, rotary selectors etc - and I have built a much smaller version of this style of layout before in a 12 x 8 shed.  That showed, for example, that the polarity of the inner and outer main circuits should be opposite.  That makes the transition through the return "loop" (i.e. throough Maidstone Lane) easier to manage when using one controller.  Diamond crossing frogs are then controlled through manual switches - crude but effective.

It is tempting to go for a train detection system in the storage areas but I am not comfortable with the technology yet so this is still pending.  The present plan is use plain old 12v lamps across isolator sections.  Very Cyril Freezer and inefficient but I know it works and that's just your point!!

Barry

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I agree with those that say, try to avoid duck unders, saying that I could have 4 in the way, which is why I'm working on lift up hinged bridge sections.
 Here's how I'm building my large layout, hopefully it may give you some ideas, most of mine are nicked from others...

My own Layout of a lifetime is 53ft by up to 16 ft in EM gauge. As so far no track has been laid, but there is 300yards of it stacked up (it's gone up by over 25 % since I bought it).

Although my layout is large, thats because it's of a real place and uncompressed. So the main station will be around 34ft long and even the small country station is 18ft long down the other side of the shed. The layout is actually fairly simple, the actual signal cabins had 16, 28, and 11 levers not all used.

I have no worries of me not completing it, it is meant to be my retirement bad weather hobby, there is have another 6 years till I retire and since my parents are still alive, so a probable 30years+ after that. I've already spent 10 + years getting this far...

Even then a railway is never finished, I'm sure the first build of anything will not be to my final satisfaction, I'm sure I'll be going back to improve sections later.

My own personal approach will be to get the circle / oval  / odd shape of track installed so something can run, then pick an area and develop that. So you get a sense of acheivement as a section is finished..

 I have one board in a bare scenic ( all white plaster) condition so far, which is the start point and gives me the level the rest of the layout will work from. Once the final units are built for the layout to sit on. It's all cupboards and shelves underneath, points  / electrics will be brought to the front or back  so I don't have to get under, I intend to model in comfort.

I too am a cellotex builder, each section of scenic railway will be removeable to be put on the building bench, a large area would be too far to reach over, Again I intend to model in comfort. Once an area is completed, I'll "scenic" over the joins to hide them for a better appearance knowing it could be removed later with minimal damage.


hopefully that' ll give you a few Ideas.
  good luck with your railway ...

Barry Miltenburg
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Q

Thank you for your contribution.  Comfort is a good word and one that I had only taken into account for operating and moving around.  During construction, I too will try to keep everything within reach.  I guess I am the poor s*d having to go and fix it if it breaks - and the point motor/connection/soldered joint furthest from comfortable reach will be the one to go first!!

The twin levels I have adopted will make lift-up sections tricky but I fully understand your point and, as I have said earlier, none of us are getting any younger!  I have a habit of building llittle test rigs for things to practice on (rather than layouts like some people) and I have RM from Jan 72 to date fully indexed so I cannot believe that I can't nick an idea or two from others on lift-ups.  The curved sections on the approaches to Upton and Maidstone Lane would be a good location perhaps.

The height of the boards mentioned earlier is not cast in stone so I could just go for a few inches more and then buy higher bar stools for operation...........

The Q
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Barry Miltenburg wrote:









The height of the boards mentioned earlier is not cast in stone so I could just go for a few inches more and then buy higher bar stools for operation...........




As long as you have the bar to go with the stools, When SWMBO opened the main fridge in our Model railway shed she wasn't amused to see it alread filled with cider!!!

Oh, for a twin layer layout, a horizontal swing out section may be easier, I saw one somewhere the other day on one of the forums, it looke very efficient,  but which forum I can't remember.


Last edited on Thu May 18th, 2017 06:44 am by The Q

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Loads of videos about swing out sections/gates, but I remember seeing this one a while back when I was considering something similar.

Rather like the way he uses a pin/tree to secure the section and switch the power.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6zXdDS02Gg


Ed

Barry Miltenburg
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Thanks Ed, I found this an interesting idea.

Barry Miltenburg
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Following on from previous posts, I thought that I would share the proposed storage area with you.  The above should be looked at along with the original plan in the early posts.  The trains join/leave the main circuit in the top right hand corner of the original plan (via Summit Junction).  The storage area sits about 5 inches below the upper level so the double track along the top of the plan is a on a gradient.  Note that the inner track (down to the lower level) is shorter than the outer line.  This makes the down grade steeper, or the up grade easier if you prefer.

Each of the storage tracks is divided into sections - each section on a track is the same length and each holds one train.  Each section comprises an isolated stretch to hold the locomotive and a length to hold the train with a margin of error. This margin is required because tests have shown that different locomotives under power and running into an isolator section have different stopping distances depending on weight, flywheels, load, speed etc.  Some storage tracks hold 3 or 4 trains whilst others hold up to 7 shorter trains.

The key to storage of this kind is to match up trains that share characteristics rather than type.  It is not a good idea to stack a daily parcels train with a once-a-week freight.  This means that the storage design is based on the operational design - part of which is the timetable/schedule.  A lot of time has gone into the types and lengths of trains proposed - all 40-odd of them!!

I can share the tables of train lengths if people find that useful but to be honest, its very specific to this project.

Barry Miltenburg
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I put this table on the Operations forum but it probably works here as well.  Please excuse the Excel spreadsheet wrapper.  This is the list of trains that will appear on each of the 11 tracks in storage.  The plan may only show 10 but the 11th was added recently.  Max train length is 8 coaches and 30 wagons - mostly to ensure that the locomotives can haul the loads up the 1 in 80 gradient to the upper level.  Note that a 30-wagon freight is over 10ft long!!
On a practical note, on a steam/diesel era layout, note that there is a huge difference between the diesels and the steamers.  My Class 24s or 25s will outhaul the entire steam fleet!!



The expresses on track 5 are 6-coach Weekday workings whilst those on track 2 are each 8 coaches and represent the Saturday Only trains.  Note that on Saturdays, expresses were strengthened so the 8 coaches will comprise a standard 6-set with 2 through coaches or a strengthener.  The "Boys" train serves the local boarding school and features in a photo on the Yarslow page of Members Layouts.  The Blasford Trip working is a short freight whilst TSq trains run from storage to the terminus.  The Coastal is a stopping service from TSq to Northborough so will run through Marystone and Yarslow.

Last edited on Sun Jul 16th, 2017 04:25 pm by Barry Miltenburg

Barry Miltenburg
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Hi guys

I thought that I would just share a few more thoughts with you in response to a comment made by a friend to whom I was chatting at the weekend.  He is a modeller of a modest layout in N and did that "whistle through your teeth" thing when I outlined my Final Grand Plan ideas with him.  He admitted to a certain level of jealousy but added the caveat that he thought I was mad!!

The layout will occupy a 24 x 16ft space on two levels but I have built this layout before using Peco Set-track in 12x8ft.  The point is that the plan represents a simple, yet large, model railway.  It would be easy to have masses of track, sidings all over, multiple stations and all sorts of stuff but there are a few key factors that MUST be obeyed (and have been obeyed in all of my previous layouts)

1.  4mm OO gauge code 75 proprietary trackwork - it works and looks good enough for me
2.  Double track main line to maximise train running with options for shunting.
3.  No odd looking split level stations - it should look as if it could have existed
4.  BR(NE) Region in the early 1960's with a degree of flexibility if I like something.
5.  Schedule not timetable - its meant to be fun not a source of stress.
6.  Uses my existing loco and stock.  RTR with kits where required.
7.  DC with basic cab control - simple electrics

KEY RULES

1.  This is a one-man operation - me.  The layout must be built, run and maintained by one person
2.  It's my railway and if I think its OK, then its OK
3.  Keep it simple
4.  Use known techniques or learn techniques before the project starts
5.  This layout is a progression from the last one

Over the last 6 or 7 years, I have built up a range of skills and have a clear list of those things I still need to learn.  I will build a small test rig to try things out if I am not sure about something.



Ballast testing for the existing layout with a colour photo for reference.



The green one's connected to the, red one........
I have since decided to use SEEP point motors with the integral crossing polarity switch - another small rig.



Kit built rolling stock + if I think it's OK, it's OK = happy

You get the idea. 

The existing layout uses storage cartridges for locos and stock so it is not difficult to create a whole load of cartridges and loads of train variety.  At present, about 80% of the trains for the Final Grand Plan exist on the existing layout albeit in a shorter format.  I can only handle 6 coaches and 20 wagons at the moment so I have maxed out at these lengths.  When the new layout comes, the financial impact is reduced bcause I already have the loco, brake van and bulk of the train.  Adding another 10 wagons is a softer landing than adding a loco and 38 wagons!!  Some of the shorter trains (Ordinary Passenger, milk, oil tanks etc) exist in a format that will transfer directly to the new layout.  This is important to know - it avoids the problem of owning too many specialist items of stock.

This approach works because I have a very clear idea in my head of where I am going.  The LMR idea mentioned earlier as a possible nice-to-have has been abandoned.  It was off beam from the original plan and became an excuse for more trains that I didn't need.  I have a list of the 42 trains that will be in storage and I know the consist of the passenger trains for example - this allows me to compare existing stock with required stock and only buy the coaches I need.  However nice a vehicle looks, if it doesn't fit, I won't buy it.  I know that puts a demand on research and being focussed but without this, the project could just run totally out of control!!

The real trick is the balance between clarity & flexibility, known techniques & new technology etc.

Am I mad, maybe but I'm gonna have a good go at producing this layout to prove it one way or the other.  I have no other vices or expensive tastes, watch very little telly and am happy to do my bit around the house - I do all the cooking and know how to wash/iron laundry.  Happy marriage is about what you put in, not what you get out  :doublethumb

Oh and BTW, my wife is fully supportive.  Am I the luckiest man alive to have a georgeous wife who supports my meglamaniac tendancies?????  :cheers

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That sounds like an excellent and well thought out plan Barry - not unlike that I adopted for Maxmill - except I jumped in feet first with everything in my head.  I now wish I'd taken your, more methodical, approach.

I'm also very pleased it's NER - BR rather than pre nationalisation maybe but one can't have everything .................. :roll: :roll:  Also, the BR period is better served in RTR than the LNER period.  Because I have similar ideas - "if I like it I'll buy it", Maxmill does have a fairly large period spread - it even has a tube line !!!! :shock: :shock: :shock:

The track plan is pretty ambitious but I'm looking forward to watching it develop and - "bon chance" as we Froggies say .......... :thumbs

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Hi Barry.


I think your plan is an the upper level of what one person can handle but If you're not in a hurry then go for it.
The main thing with a big layout is to get a circuit of track down which will keep you going at times when all you want to do is watch trains go around.
Treat it as a hobby which it is of course. That way you're never under pressure to get it finished because unless you put in serious time or have friends who can help it will take a while to get built.
Its also going to be expensive  :shock:
Its a serious plan so good luck with it.


Tony.

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Thanks for your comments guys.

Tony - its actually cheaper than it looks because I have already acquired the locomotives and a lot of the stock.  I have a clear materials list which means I am already buying switches, wire, bits and beaks whenever they come up cheap.  The other advantage of bigger projects is the option of bulk buying.  I have investigated timber prices and find that you get a much better deal when you want 20 sheets of 8x4 rather than 1 or 2!!!  The yards are also keen to deliver 20 but expect you to strap 1 or 2 onto your car roof.

I am technically retired but have a small income from a bit of work so this gets diverted into the Final Grand Plan.  When the work starts in earnest, I am planning to retire properly so the more I can stock up now, the better.  My pension covers all the bills and gives a bit left over and my wife and I have some letting income that pays for the holidays so on paper, its all good.

I am 60 next year and apart from the usual knocks and scrapes, enjoy decent health.  I reckon this is a 5-7 year project working on it as a part-time job.

What can possibly go wrong...................................

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:mutley

Barry Miltenburg
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The phone rang the other day.  My father, knowing that I know a house alarm engineer, offered him/me his old CCTV system that was no longer on use.  The kit turned out to be a box, monitor and 4 cameras with connecting wires and power supplies etc.

Luckily, a great friend of mine works for the BBC and therefore is good at making clapped out kit work perfectly.

:mutley

Renewing the various missing/broken connectors and replacing the knackered power supply cost me less than £30 inclusive of the alcohol needed to cover his labour costs!!

I now have an answer to the question of "lines of sight".  The cameras are set and working on the current layout and, on the new system, will allow me to monitor activities under the baseboard where I would otherwise not be able to see from the operating position.

What a wonderful thing - luck  :Happy

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That's very interesting, Barry.  Can you show us some shots of it working?

Barry Miltenburg
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As requested, here are some pictures of the installation.

 

Here is the screen sitting on top of the box of magic.  The display can show me all 4 camera positions or one at a time on rotation.  There is even a remote control to change things from my operators chair.  Luxury!!



You can see that the cameras are labelled CH1, CH2 etc - unfortunately, this cannot be altered.  CH1 is showing the exit of the UP storage cartridge with the train on the UP main avoiding line.  CH2 shows the entrance to the UP cartridge.  CH3 shows the entrance of the DOWN cartridge and the branch unit and CH4 shows the exit of the DOWN cartridge.

 

There are 2 types of camera (not sure why).  The dead spiders etc will be removed when the cameras are installed in their proper locations!!

 

The big bonus is the option of infra red.  The top photo shows the view I get with the shed lights off.  This is how I imagine the "under baseboard" images might look.  Above is the camera in the dark - excuse the wobbly picture but the exposure was about 5 seconds!!! 

Last edited on Sat Sep 9th, 2017 10:37 am by Barry Miltenburg

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I want one !!!   :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

That's fantastic Barry - lucky you. :thumbs

Barry Miltenburg
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Peter

You know, when I was younger I saw a layout at an exhibition using headsets and microphones and CCTV and thought "Flash bar-stewards!!"

Now I sooo get it..............

Last edited on Sat Sep 9th, 2017 11:50 am by Barry Miltenburg

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Thanks, Barry.  It looks like my home setup with four cameras around my house.

You'll have some fun with that.

What are the gizmos with the alligator clips?

Barry Miltenburg
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Hi Max

The crocodile clips are part of the cartridge system - the cartridges have pcb pieces glued to the top corners to transfer power from the track to the cartridge.  Putting the cartridge in place and clipping on the crocs allows the train to arrive/depart.



This is a very old photo when I used "Dog-clips" as we call them here but they were not as good as crocs.  Hopefully this picture will give you an idea of how it works.

There is a video on my Yarslow YouTube channel about cartridges for more info.

Thanks for your interest!

Barry

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Thanks, Barry.

We call them fold back clips.  :lol:

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Hi Barry,

Dog clips? :mutleyThey're known as binder or (gasp) fold-back clips in the UK. Bulldog clips are a different beastie, they usually don't fold down.

Apropos CCTV cameras. For anybody interested, this is not an expensive item. Costs less than a new locomotive. You can get a 4 camera system with1080 resolution for around £100 (without monitor). Drop to 720 resolution and it's around £50-£70. Most systems have WiFi capability, so you don't even need a monitor, the laptop is fine. Also useful for monitoring that layout when away from home - most gave an inbuilt DVD, motion detector and email alerts. 

Nigel

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Thanks Nigel - Dog Clips, Fold-back?? Who knows.  I worked in a bank for 32 years where we used Treasury Tags - remember them?

The CCTV info is interesting.  I knew I wasn't getting something wildly expensive (because my dad bought it :twisted:) but the whole concept is just amazing.  I was planning to use mirrors but now I have CCTV - how posh am I???? :lol:

Barry

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Hi Barry,

Treasury tags - yes I do.I also remember using index cards with holes on the sides and top and bottom with letters and numbers top and bottom. More choices than an Excel spread sheet as more than one number/letter could be used. Used to have a couple of thousand with information on each one. No need to have them sorted. The "knitting needles" did that.

CCTV? The next layout is planned to be some 14 feet long and linear. Not sure I need it for that. If I have a couple of fiddle yards at the end a couple of cameras could prove useful however. For $60, why not? I suspect it's an item that over 10 years had decreased 10-fold in price.

Nigel

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Hi Barry,
This looks a great project, I wish you well with it.
I once bought my clubs old exhibition layout which was 27' x 9' and built a shed of 32' x 12' to house it in.
My first mistake was when the contractor came to do the concrete foundation asked "how big", I told him the above measurement - I didn't realise that he meant how big do you want the foundation!?! When the guys came to build the actual shed, we managed to squeeze a shed of 31'6" x 11'6" on the foundation, giving an inside measurement of about 31' x 11' - which left barely 24" to squeeze down the side of the layout, no way could two people pass each other.
Operating mainly on my own, I managed okay but when I had guys from the club around, it was tight!
The main lesson I learned was that you need an automated system of track cleaning as to do it by hand every time was just too time consuming. I found the CMX cleaner to be good although it needed a powerful diesel loco to haul it.
It was not sufficient though, I found that a scouring action was also needed so I would recommend you investigate Lux Modellbau track cleaners, mine seems okay but I got rid of the big layout prior to getting mine. I had also tried the Dapol cleaner but found it's only use was as a vacuum cleaner, it was rubbish at cleaning track!
Next, duck unders.
As your building is not finished yet(?), how about dropping the floor under the duck unders by a step or two? This would give you a 'walk under', as a back pain sufferer, I wished I had had these.
My layout was analogue already and I am very incompetent when it comes to masses of wiring so, after a while, I did convert to digital operation, which I found much easier but each to their own, I do understand your concerns about the cost of equipping a large fleet with decoders, sound or not.
I believe it depends on what you want out of a layout - if you want to send trains flying round and round, analogue is fine but if you want to start double heading, adding/removing banking engines, complex shunting and so forth, then digital is really useful as you can just drive the locos without worrying about section switches and the like.
Ultimately my layout was too obviously British for running my German or American trains on so I sold it, that's my "butterfly" effect influencing me but your track plan looks very promising indeed.
You have different routes to choose or a nice branch, hopefully enough to maintain interest for a long time (forever, even).
Cheers,
John.

Barry Miltenburg
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The duck-under, walk-under?  I like that idea.  The building is nowehere near starting yet alone finished so there is still plenty of time to change things around. I guess if the sub-soil, drains etc allow it, then a bit of a well under the centre could be very useful

Thanks for the thought

It seems everybody has got a "big layout" story and I am keen to hear them all - the more mistakes other people have made already, the fewer there are left for me!!

p.s. the architect has been told on pain of death that the INSIDE dimensions of the room will be 24ft x 16ft. :thumbs

Barry

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Being the architect/ builder / labourer of my shed I'm the only one to blame If I've got the dimensions wrong for my shed.
http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=14227&forum_id=21&highlight=ludgershall.

The Biggest problem I've got I know of, Is I haven't remembered to leave a place for the control panels...:sad:



The main compromise was getting Planning permission from SWMBO, so one end where the non scenic  track will run round the edge of the shed is her art studio...



 I love the Idea of the security cameras for the view of the layout, I had thought of  individual cameras systems for the distant parts, but yours is a much more integrated approach.



A drop under! I wish I'd  thought of that, that might well be the solution for two of my layouts get under problems rather than bridges.

 luckily I have wooden floors so it still might be achieved. Measurements will take place shortly...



You guys are proving a mine of useful ideas...:lol:


Last edited on Thu Sep 14th, 2017 01:41 pm by The Q

Barry Miltenburg
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The general feeling amongst folk seems to be that this project is on the large side and comes therefore with inherant dangers.  Whilst I would tend to agree with the sentiment, I have the advantage of being a single-minded so-and-so (not sure that is the wording my wife would use) and that I have lived with this thing for 3 years so I know every inch of it and can see it in my minds eye.

I also have the advantage that I am in control of my own time (as I work for myself) and look upon this project as a part-time job.

This week has seen then passing of a couple of important milestones.  Elsewhere on the forum I discussed the recent purchase of a Bachmann J11 - this is the final locomotive required to complete the stud of 53 locomotives.  Admittedly, some would be replaced given the opportunity as they are older Hornby types but nevertheless, they are fully working and, for now, fill the need.  Going forward, I would identify possibly 6 to replace (Old Hornby Cl.25, Hornby Cl.29, Hornby old B12, ancient Hornby N2, Hornby D49 tender driven, Ivatt Cl.2 pretending to be a BR Standard).  There is also an old 4F who's tender drive is being used for a J27 build (see another thread).

There will be 51 trains on the layout, of which 4 do not exist at present.  2 of these are 6-coach Express passenger trains but I already have 4 such trains waiting to be uprated to 8-coach sets and space precludes any more.  1 train will be a third Stopping freight service running a trip across from a LMR branch (giving me an excuse to run the beautiful LYR 2-4-2T) and so this train only needs to exist for now as an engine and brake van.  If you have a look at my Yarslow YouTube channel, there is a video on Stopping freight trains and how I run them - this gives you a clue as to how this trip working will be made up.

The final missing train was going to be a class F unfitted freight but I am really struggling to find photographic evidence of a prototype to copy as they seem very rare beasts.  As I prefer to follow the Frank Dyer "mundane" school of modelling, this train may well morph into a Class J "mineral" working and consist of a random assortment of wagons - there are plenty of photos of freight trains running on secondary main lines carrying J headlamps but which are clearly NOT mineral workings.  Hopefully, I can find a suitable photo and it will end up being an F class "unfitted" after all.

I can accommodate this train on the existing layout but only 12 wagons of it so if it does come into being, it will be a short version.  I am minded to build those 12 wagons from kits for no other reason than it would make a change from just buying stuff!!

My existing layout can only handle 6 coach passenger trains and 20 wagon freights so there will need to be an expansion prgramme when the time is right to produce the 8 coach expresses and 28-30 wagon freights that will run on The Final Grand Plan.  However, that expansion is in the future and so I can happily say that, within the confines of the present layout, the trains required for the Final Grand Plan are (in some form or other) existing. :Happy

Last night I went through the plan (v21.3 by the way!!) with my finest tooth comb making sure that everyting was as it should be.  Ideas have changed over 3 years and it's easy to opt for 4-coach trains whereas the original thought was 3-coach and then find that the run-round in the terminus is too short!!!  Happily I avoided such schoolboy errors but I did notice that the facing turnouts on the double junctions were medium radius (Peco Code 75) so I changed them to large radius.  There were a few trap points missong and these have been added in.  I have also experimented with diamond crossings to find that the dead frog versions are every bit as reliable as the live frog versions and a lot easier to wire.  The jury is out on whether I opt for settrack turnouts in the storage sidings (I have a load which makes it tempting) or stick with the planned short radius live frog Code 75.  In any case, I now have a shopping list of track and turnouts.  Deducting those I hope to salvage from my 2 present layouts, that list still runs to 70+ units!!

Running the various trains in my mind have led to the inclusion of an extra siding (for brake vans) at the large through station so that reversing Stopping freights (the LYR-hauled train mentioned above) can run round without the van getting in the way.

I continue to collect photos and ideas for scenic treatment of the various areas and this has inspired a move of the branch wayside station towards the traverser by about 8 inches, opening up the possibility of an inlet/low overbridge/mill-race type scene.  This would remove the need for the branch to emerge from a tunnel - it could simply appear from behind the mill a-la most of Iain Rice's layouts.  [That's not a dig - I admire what he does and see "copying" as "flattery"] .

So the page turns and I move on to (a) starting to acquire track, cork sheeting, wire, point motors, switches etc ready for the start of construction, (b) improving the trains now sitting on the old layout - weathering, adding loads & passengers, loco crews, brake van lights etc etc and (c) upgrading existing equipment ready for the new layout - signalbox interiors, rebuilding the old Hornby breakdown crane into something more realistic, making the signals work, building an engine shed for Yarslow etc etc etc.

Yes, the project is daunting but I am making great progress towards D-Day.  Unfortunately, for various reasons, that date is not yet on the calendar but, looking on the bright side, that's more time to do (a), (b) and (c) above :) :)

B

Barry Miltenburg
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Oh and a couple of other minor changes - the main city to/from which all of this ran has always been Barchester or Bardchester - I am a Trollope Barchester Tales fan - but the real Barchester(!) was really Winchester so the name always rubbed a bit when I chose it for a NER station.  Similarly, Maidstone Lane was a name from an old layout that I just liked.

As of yesterday, the city became Beckbridge (sounds a bit more NE I thought) and therefore the terminus will be Beckbridge Trinity Square.  The through station will become Marystone as a nod towards the original.

I know that names are not vital but, for me, they bring a project to life and allow a bit of back-story telling that starts to make like you really want to live in Yarslow and get the train to Beckbridge every morning to go to work.....

Barry Miltenburg
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Here is a quick look at v21.2 as a reminder. 

Barry Miltenburg
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I've just realised that my last post on this subject was Janaury 2017!!

Blimey - where did those two years go?  I think I remember 2017 as a bit of a blurr but I can't, for the life of me, recall anything meaningful I did in 2018 until the end of the year when I went to New Zealand for a couple of months and re-wrote a couple of books that I originally wrote about 5 years ago.

What a lovely place and lovely people - very friendly and they even spoke well of their cousins from their "Western island" called Straylia or something similar  :lol: :lol:

Since coming back before last Christmas I have been somewhat consumed by a couple of my other hobbies (flat-green bowling and wargaming - not at the same time you understand) - I know its a strange mix but hey!  Both of those happen indoors and whilst the winter in the UK has been, basically, cold and 'orrid, nothing much gets done down in the railway shed.  I did do some electrical work extending the ring main but that was about it.  The book thing is the wargame link - it sounds grand but I assure you its not.

Oh but I did totally redesign the proposed layout for the new space.  That came about because the space I originally wanted in a house we wanted didn't happen.  "So what happens if you can't get that space?" was an unloaded but harsh question.  "Can you put up with less?"

That started a search for an acceptable plan in less that 24ft x 16ft.  The answer, via my usual twenty-odd variations, was "kind of, sort of, probably but, in reality, no".  The best I could do was 24ft x 12ft if I lost some weight or 24ft x 14ft if I didn't wear a pullover - the aisles were looking tight!

The new plan (already up to version 12 or 13 I think) removed the low-level storage sidings and the central reverse loops.  The storage is now on the same level as the main through station but I have retained the city terminus and the branch.  I have gained a PW depot with a few sidings and a non-scenic loco depot in the storage area.  It still can accommodate some 40-odd trains so I'm happy.

If I end up with the original large space, I am now torn between the two ideas and in fact, the new design in the old space has quite an appeal.  The through/junction station is a lot simpler though and I think I might miss the complexity and operation opportunities.  One of the reasons for the change/simplification here was an incident on my present layout when I was shunting a few wagons from a train standing in the platform.  A quick flick of the shunting pole and the wagons were detached along with the top half of the starter signals!!  Bugger!!  If that happens when I am reaching across my proposed station where platform canopies and more delicate signals are planned, I will end up with a full-time job mending stuff. :sad: :sad:

The final epiphany came when I was running some of the proposed trains on the old layout, just to see how they looked.  I currently run 20-wagon freights because that's the longest that my cartridge storage will take.  On the new layout I was proposing 35-40 wagon trains and had planned the gradients for that length.  However, when it came down to it and I captured the new trains on video, it became almost impossible to distinguish between a 30 wagon train and a 40 wagon train - unless I actually counted the wagons - the visual effects were very similar.

So why was I getting paranoid about 35 or 40 wagons when 30 would be more than enough.  In the final analysis, I laid out a 35 wagon train on the floor of the hall.  Yes it looked nice but when I shortened it to 30 wagons, it didn't disappoint.  Going back to the drawing board I realised that planning a storage yard for 30 wagon trains is a lot easier than planning for 35 or 40 wagon trains.  Similarly I have shortened my express passenger trains from 10 to 8 coaches without any loss of visual enjoyment.  Remember I am modelling a secondary main line so no A4's with top link expresses for me, just inter-regional stuff.

The space for the new layout still doesn't exist but having had a few months away from the new plan (somewhat rudely referred to as "Plan B") I remain convinced that shorter trains will still satisfy me and that I could have actually improved the plan by being a little more realistic and bit less meglamaniacal!!!

Plus ca change as they say in certain places.............

ZeldaTheSwordsman
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Both plans are quite exciting and ambitious, and I look forward to when the construction can finally begin. I love some of the ideas here, like CCTV to help with controlling stuff from afar, and the concept of a dip in the floor below duckunders.

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Hi Barry.  I don’t know what headroom you have, but if the new Railway Room was tall enough? You could consider a footbridge in 1:1 scale, seriously.   Best wishes Kevin 

Barry Miltenburg
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Its been some time since I updated this project which stalled for a number of reasons linked with family bereavement, house issues, trips to New Zealand and all sorts of other unrelated stuff.  Needless to say, the prize remains firmly in sight and work continues towards the goal.

Almost inevitably, the question came up of whether I could actually get 24ft x 16ft - a debate driven by a number of properties offering slightly smaller areas (the house it was going to happen in didn't materialise).  So what if I had less space - what was the minimum space I could get away with?

The answer was, of course, a much smaller space but I wanted what I wanted - it was really a question of how small could I make the system without losing its character?

Strangely, what with one thing and another, a new design emerged that removed the two-level aspect of the old plan and kept everything level.



You will see that I am still working to a 24ft x 14ft area and would prefer 16ft width to increase the walkways.  The duck-under problem has gone away as has the question of train lengths and the ability of locomotives to pull their trains up from the low level storarge areas.  The system can still accommodate 50 trains.  [The plan has changed since I made this image - the Yarslow yard has been redesigned to allow access to the goods loop via a a slip crossing when reversing out of the UP platform - the point providing the link between the yard and the UP line has had to move.]

It is still DC, Peco Code 75 and designed for single-handed operation.

Known originally as "Plan C" it then became known as the "Large Layout Project".  Plan B was a 18ft x 8ft garage scheme that challenged me to go back to small spaces again and was designed to test my real ability to build something less enourmous - I failed!  I resorted to 20ft x 12ft and designed something along the lines of Arthur Whitehead's "Just Supposing" from the 1970's Railway Modeller series.  These were LMS schemes that never were but developed by Arthur up to believable layouts with names, places and trains as inspiration.

The new system has a redesigned main station (Yarslow) and could now avoid the return loop across the middle of the room by staying on one level.  Trinity Square survives and has its own storage sidings at the front of the storage area.  The loco shed area is a "scenic storage" zone - I wil put in ash ballast, coal stages and water cranes but essentially, this is part of the storage area.  The turntable will be hand-operated.  Note the cartridge bay on the left for the occasional trains (engineering, pigeon specials etc).

The branch line is changing daily.  The traverser exists already (linked to another layout) and I have started building Long Dyke although it only 4ft long - it is my nod in the direction of a "plank" - albeit with a 4ft traverser on each end.  I am very much inspired by Chris Nevard (hence the "Lesser Nevard" station) and plan to use this little station to up my game on the scenery front.  I am happy with my latest tree-making efforts but will treat myself to a decent static grass applicator.  The signals will work and I will use SEEP point motors in place of the Peco ones on the present layout.

I did start to build a portable layout called Baffle Road (an anagram of AFFORDABLE) to see how little I had to spend to build a decent model terminus - 12ft x 15in on 3 x 4ft boards, one of which was a traverser.  The project got somewhat de-railed by my starting to use it to experiment - SEEP motors, baseboard connectors, different switches, walkabout controllers etc etc.  In the end, I stripped it all out again and now have the boards and a traverser as above.

Hopefully I will start track laying on Long Dyke this week - at least I can then say that I have started on the new layout, now entitled "The Great Northern Railway" bearing in mind that we currently reside south of Watford and are hoping to move very much north of here in the foreseeable future.

I will post other developments and maybe some stuff on system designs/operational designs etc over the next couple of weeks.

Watch this space!!

Barry

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Still an impressive plan Barry, all you need now is a new railway room with a house attached :mutley


Ed

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I had a spare day yesterday and so started on the Great Northern Railway by making Long Dyke (see the plan above).

I stripped back one of the boards of the ill-fated Baffle Road layout and removed all of the track, ballast, polystyrene and filler.  I had point motors and wiring and switched and connectors aplenty!

A half hour playing with the pointwork revealed that I could get a large Peco Y point under the roadbridge and a  L/H "medium" (36 inch) radius point at the start of the only siding to create a "blind" siding for safety.  The main line would then curve back to the straight and produce enough room for a platform and a level crossing.  There would be one siding.

By mid-afternoon I had the track wired and section switches rigged up for testing.  Then came the SEEP point motors and Gaugemaster Capacitor Discharge unit.  A panel-mounted power input for the 16v AC supply and a 9-pin DIN for the Gaugemaster walk-about completed the panel.  The yard section switched is a simple on-off whilst the main section is a on-off-on as it will eventually allow control of the line to be switched to another (Yarslow main) controller.  This will allow the Yarslow controller to drive a train off the branch and into the station - I have always wired my layouts to ensure that the train is under the command of the recieving controller - its easier to keep an eye on things.

The traverser came from Baffle Road although I had to "convert" it to allow operation from the other side - an easy task by removing the tall "frontscene" that originally blocked viewing access and re-marking the sidings/switch positions to be readable from the other side.

As dark fell, I had my J36 shunting some wagons around - section switching and point control working as it should.

Scenic wise, this is a chance to ipgrade my artistic efforts and try to get a lot closer to Chris Nevard than I have with my Yarslow layout.  I have a good supply of plans and plastic sheeting in stock so a platform and station building are planned along with the ubiquitous pub.

I will post some pics soon.

Last edited on Thu May 2nd, 2019 02:28 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Wow Barry - all that in "a spare day" !! 

Don't suppose you'd be interested in popping over here for a half day would you ?  We could build a layout before the coffee break and go wine tasting afterwards ................  You could sort out the Brexit mess whilst waiting for the flight back ............. :cheers

Looking forward to the pictures .......... :thumbs

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Great plan there Barry good you are able to work on the centre sections before the move as that can take some time to sort.
I started life not to far from where you are St Albans  my fathers family were all from Watford i did work in Watford for a while myself.

Brian

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This photo is actually sideways!!

Here is Long Dyke propped up in the laundry room.  The traverser fits on the left-hand end and the road overbridge will cover the exit and the control panel top left.  I have to make another traverser for the right hand end.  Note the capacitor discharge unit.  The platform will fit above the main line where I have drawn in black marker.  The top here is the front/operating side.  You can see the proposed route of the lane into the station yard which comprises just one siding.  The various holes in the backscene and baseboard will, of course, be filled.  The cross-hatching, lower left, is a hang-over from Baffle Road so ignore this.  The area will be scenery.




This photo (from his own webpage) gives an idea of the work of Chris Nevard - check his work out on the web and YouTube.  I will only get half-way close to this but this is my aim.  His work is superb.

Last edited on Thu May 2nd, 2019 03:11 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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More progress today.


Here is another sideways photo of the traverser modified from the previous project as described.  Entrance is from the left so the rotary control for track selection is now in the back corner instead of at the front but thats no problem.  Track 4 is split for engineer trains.  This traverser represents Highmarsh on the Great Northern Railway.



Track laid and wired and J36 65311 on a test train standing in the platform.



Beyond the overbridge is the traverser - this is part of the old layout just re-vamped but with new wiring etc.  Note the small control panel.  The walkabout controller will remain with Long Dyke now and be used on the new system.  The input into the panel top right is the 16v AC transformer.



The big leap forward today was the construction of the board that will become Lesser Nevard on the Great Northern Railway.  Here it is just blank but will be occupied by an industrial scene (no passenger platform other than, perhaps, a works halt).  I do not have room in the garage for another fiddle yard on the end so Lesser Nevard can act as fiddle yard for Long Dyke and then I will remove the traverser, add a sector plate and use Long Dyke as the fiddle yard when running Lesser Nevard.

Confused?

More pics when more progress is made.

Barry

Last edited on Fri May 3rd, 2019 02:25 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Bank holiday weekend and not much on so I have bodged up a fiddle yard so that Long Dyke can be operated properly.  Wiring tidied up board-board connections made with phono plugs (they will be replaced by a hardwire connection when this fits into the new layout).

Had a good running session today to test everything and then put in the basic polystyrene blocks which will give me some scenic base.

Hopefully a bit of ballasting this week.

Barry

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Its been quite mad here recently so not a lot of modelling time - just the odd hour here and there.

I discovered a structural integrity issue with the shed which houses the current Yarslow layout and as a result had to move most of the free-standing contents out so that I could investigate properly.  That led to a an opportunity to take a good look at the draw-fulls of "stuff" I have accumulated - you know - those bits that "might come in handy one day".

End result was a dustbin full of discarded rubbish and the discovery of lots of kits that I have bought for the new layout but forgotten about.

The upshot of this was that the hours I have managed to spend in the shed have seen the construction of a Wills small signal cabin kit, a lineside hut that came free with the Railway Modeller yonks ago, a grounded van body kit from the same source, about 3 dozen telegraph poles and a Wills small platform/halt kit that will do nicely for the next board on the Highmarsh branch for the works Halt.

The burst of activity came from the knowledge that whilst the old shed seems to have acquired a distinct "sunken" section, nothing is actually moving and the floor timbers all appear quite solid.  In fact I think that the baseboards and the internal boarding might be supporting the shed at that point!!  The baseboard remains quite level and its just the lower sections that have sunk so the only downside is that my workbench is now on a slight slope!!

I will post some pictures when I can but in the meantime, as I start another non-modelling related project, I am only getting a bit of spare time each evening so have started on the timetable for the line.  I will write progress up for that next.

Barry

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Not sure whether I should post here or under "Other interests" but the non-modelling project mentioned above involves me training and being examined to become a lawn bowls Umpire through English Bowls Umpires Association.  I've bowled for nearly 20 years and enjoy officiating as well.

Having re-trained from being a city desk walla to be an electrician in my 50's, (about 6 or 7 exams and then two 3-hour written papers) ,I fancy my chances at learning a much smaller rule book and being successful at this!!

I will let you know how I get on over the summer and would encourage anyone who has not tried it to give bowls a go - great fun and very sociable!!

Barry

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Yes, it's great fun Barry, and rewarding when it all comes together, so bon courage learning the rule book.

I spent a coule of hours weeding our 'boules terrain' this afternoon in readyness for the summer season. The rule book is somwhat shorter over here, but the matches are certainly lively affairs.

Have fun,

Bill

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Bill
We have a chap at our (indoor) club who has moved to the UK and is trying his hand at bowling. He has, as you would expect, taken to it quickly. 

There is talk of using a spare piece of ground as a boules terrain at the club so we could invite other clubs to play. Lets hope!!

Barry

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They say that every journey starts with a small step.  Except in my case, it starts with a halt.  Let me explain.

Trying to get some space to work on the new Long Dyke/branch halt layout is very difficult at present owing to the continual occupation of the garage by my wife's car and the need to keep the dining room clear for guests etc (I couldn't see the issue with a railway layout in the middle of the dining room....)

I have therefore decided that as the shed was upside down trying to sort out the floor, I would have a good sort out and find some space to erect the layout in there.  As a result I have turfed out about 20 or 30 old 4mm kit built wagons that was all that remained of my old MR 1920's layout from when I was a wee nipper.  They were all past their sell-by date and the coaches were no better than passable so I took the plunge and they have all gone to the storage sidings in the sky (local tip).

Likewise a load of stuff that, for some reason, started living in my shed.

Now I had some space at the end of the shed so Long Dyke has a new home!!


Whilst I can't run a train beyond the end of the baseboard, I can start on the point rodding, ballast and scenery - you can see that I have started with some polystyrene lumps already. 

My journey towards Chris Nevard-esque-ness (is that even a word?) began with a small Wills Halt kit that I thought I would build for the next station along the branch and then weather using Chris's recommendation - pastal weathering powders using a limited range of tones.

So my journey starts with a halt...



Here it is plonked on the Long Dyke board.  I am convincing myself it will look better when there is some scenery around it - but it's a start.  As an aside, although it is the only fit-option that worked, I am less than happy with the fencing on the ramps.  They seem to be very high and much higher than the rest.  I can see the razor saw coming out and some modifications taking place. 

The next station along the branch will be just a siding for Roe Boxes, a rail-served factory.  The halt will be for their workmen - the 6.41am Highmarsh-Yarslow and 8.10am Yarslow-Highmarsh passenger trains call at Roe Halt to set down only.  In the evening, there are return workings at 5.05 and 6.43 to get the workers home again.  Given that this is the early 1960's, I do not suppose many workers actually come by train anymore anyway.

Barry Miltenburg
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I had an odd hour today so put together the point rodding for Long Dyke using Wills Point Rodding kits.



Using baseplates of 1/4" x 1/4" 10 thou plastic card I put together the run I needed.  Note that there are 2 rods - the point on the running line and the point lock.  There are no signals here the station is not a block post.



The cranks at each end are the trickiest bit but with a bit of patience, this is achieved.



Here is the rod laid on the baseboard to work out the position of the ground frame hut (another Wills kit).

A useful hour spent and another job done.  Next comes some ballast and scenery.

Barry

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To the sound of modellers up and down the land rubbing their hands together.............



Up to 8 metres long!!!!!!!!!!!

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I have no intention of making this a blow-by-blow account of building a 400sqft layout.  Suffice to say that High Dyke has been ballasted, the track has been painted and weathered and the basic scenery shell is in.  When it stops looking like a building site and starts to look like a model railway section I will post a few pics.

In the meantime, I am going to post a series of YouTube vids discussing the design process that I have gone through to get to my final plan.  I am not advocating that mine is the only way nor the right way, its just the way I took and I am happy to share some of the bumps and mistakes along the way so that others don't fall down the same holes.

The focus will be on large layouts rather than planks and little layouts.  The Great Northern Railway project will occupy a large area, have 4 stations, 2 storage areas and feature over 50 trains - definitely not a plank!

Hopefully the design processes will be of some use to someone somewhere, even if they choose to see what I have done and then do it entirely differently!!

In other news, the layout has benefitted from another burst of "preparation" - a £30 Bachmann B1 "Wildebeeste" bought cheap because it has wobbly wheels - a quick fix making it 5 x B1's on the roster.  I am happy to take on such challenges when I know how to fix a problem.  I rarely buy anything listed as "a non-runner but looks OK" for fear of ending up with another scrapper.

My next focus is on coaching stock having finalised the timetable and tallied up the number of coaches now required.  All this will be covered in the Design videos mentioned above.

Over and Out for a while - the Women's World Cup (soccer) in Nice, France and the World Cup Netball in Liverpool UK will consume my summer so modelling opportunities will be rare birds.

Barry

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Hi Barry,

What was the problem/fix? Split stub axle?

Nigel

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Hi Nigel

These old Mainline/Bachmann chassis are split and therefore have two stub wheels with short axles, having a square section on the inner end.  They fit into a nylon "axle" which has square holes in the end.  That is not the real issue although they can work loose and need a bit of cyno to hold them in place.

The metal driving wheels comprise a back and a rim and have no real spoke detail (although they do have spokes if that makes sense) - this is provided by a plastic insert that fits into the wheel from the front.  The coupling rods fit into the plastic insert using a 1.5mm hex bolt that secures into the back of the metal wheel.  All that is great but the plastic has a tendancy to warp out of shape and as it is enclosed inside the metal rim, the only was it can expand is to bulge outwards, interfering with the coupling rod.



Here is a close-up of the driving wheel showing the metal rim (weathered silver), the hex bolt securing the coupling rod and the plastic insert (the black bit).   The plastic insert was warped outwards with obvious consequences for the rotation of the coupling rod.

The fix is quite simple but a bit of a fiddle.  Remove the chassis from the loco (easy) and the keeper plate (easy) then remove the hex bolt using a nut driver (easy).  Run superglue down between the spokes (and so between the plastic insert and the metal wheel) (with care) and use a clamp to squeeze the plastic insert back into the wheel (OK).  Leave to dry overnight making sure that the clamp is both tight and not glued to the wheel!!!

In the morning you should have a flat, solid wheel/insert.  If you get this wrong and have glued the insert without getting it flat, you have to remove the insert completely (VERY carefully), clean it off and have another go.  Guess how I know that!

Now replace the wheelset (easy), refit the hex bolt (total PITA as they are much smaller than my fingers) and rebuild the chassis (easy).

I have done 3 of these now - 2 on Lord Burleigh alone - and have successfully returned both locos to full working order.  Wildebeeste, the latest purchase, cost £30 on eBay.  Repair costs - nothing!!



Happy days

Barry

Last edited on Mon Jun 3rd, 2019 05:32 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Hi Barry,

Interesting. Thanks. Same problem with old Tyco steam locos.

Nigel

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Hi all from sunny & windy Nice
Took the opportunity yesterday to pop down to Monaco on the train - a double-deck job with air conditioned comfort and a rapid transit time all for €8 return!!  Take note SouthWesternTrains please.  Out of interest, noticed how light the rail looked on the route notwithstanding the (presumed) heavy axle loadings of the train.

I have been living with my latest plan for some time now (see post 43) and have spent many a happy hour planning electrics, operation, track lengths etc to ensure that the layout can perform exactly as I want it to.

Imagine my absolute horror then to realise that the lay-bye siding at Yarslow is a complete shambles.  If you look at post 43 you will appreciate that a train on the (clockwise) up line cannot either access the siding or depart from it!!

I must have looked at this plan a thousand times and had not noticed this before.  I can only think that I had designed the lay-bye in whilst the junction still used a single slip in place of the proper double junction and when I changed the layout of the junction, completely overlooked the need to redesign the siding.

Needless to say I have now amended the plan and the lay-bye is accessed via a trailing single slip in place of the diamond crossing.  Up trains can now reverse into it from the up platform and then exit back onto the main line.  There is still a trap point at the end of the siding for safety.

It has also spurned a rash of thorough checking to see what else I’ve made a hash of!!!

Barry

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Hi Barry,

Your comment about the train to nowhere prompted me to go back to post 43. One thing that struck me is the radius of the tracks around the turntable and on the opposite side. They look to be around 22"-24"' if the grid is 12" . 


Nigel

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Hi Nigel
The radius at this section is about 24 inches but these are the approach tracks for the terminus storage roads - short trains and tank engines mostly.  All of these trains currently work well on the existing Yarslow layout where the tracks running around the storage area are Peco 2nd radius - 18 inches or so - so I am not concerned at the tight radius.

On the main line I rarely get down under 30 inches and all of the main circuit point work is large radius except the small radius stuff in the storage area (24 inch radius)

Barry

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Hi All

As the Large Layout Project rolls ever (slowly) forward, thoughts have turned to the actual building in which the layout is to be located.  Plan A was a site within the house but finding houses with 400sqft spare space is a nigh impossible task - at least where we are looking in the UK.

Plan B was an outbuilding and these are readily available but more often than not, they are old cow sheds or similar or a "games room" that includes a bar and a snooker table, adding a nice sum to the price of the house.  Cow sheds are vast and I don't fancy the prospect of converting such a behemoth into a livable railway room. 

Plan C was to build something.  That requires a suitably large garden plot, sufficient for said building, chickens, veg plot and a place for the BBQ/some flowering stuff.  This was/is the preferred route having discounted....

Plan D which was a loft space.  I have never build a layout in a loft for all the reasons that I have read about, written by people who have built layouts in lofts.  Too hot/cold, costly to insulate, water tanks, flooring, roof supports, etc etc.  There was a series of adverts in the Railway Modeller a few years ago showng the work of a loft-room company who produced useable (non-habitable) space clearly aimed at modellers etc.  This could still be a possibility IF the house we find offers a suitable space.  Not surprisingly, no estate agents give you loft dimensions so it might be something we just rock and roll with based on what we think the loft might be like based on the pictures of the house.  Hmmm.

Plan C is winning at present.  A brick built structure is about £30K plus the electrics etc although I can do these myself of course.  Add another few grand for insulation, ventilation, path etc and my piggy bank is empty.  The cost of building the basic layout is estimated at £8-10K - mostly timber, track, wire and scenics etc although the extra rolling stock guestimate is an additional £4-5K at this stage.  (I have discovered that wanting 50 trains is a great idea but the rolling stock requirements are not insignificant.  I have over 500 wagons already but would still need another 500+).

Whilst packing up Yarslow, I have redicovered an article in an old mag about Tony Wright's Little Bytham.  It covers the erection of his 30ft x 12ft(?) shed that now houses the layout.

So why don't I look at sheds?



This 26ft x 14ft beauty is made by an English company and offers a wide range of doors and window combinations plus the option of a more substantioal roof (I am not a lover of corragated plastic).  Its tongue-and-groove (referred to as "shiplap") and comes with 5"x4" floor bearers supporting an 18mm floor capable of withstanding a car being parked on it.  I can do gutters/rainwater gear and the whole thing is looking like £3000!!!

Even after insulation, the piggy bank would still rattle and timber innards are going to be easier to fix to than blockwork so building the baseboards is actually easier too.  The layout project is not really tied to a budget but I would have to be mad not to consider going down this route!!

We have 5 sheds/outbuildings on our property at present, some of which are 15 years old and get a proper treatment every couple of years.  The occasional new roof is no issue as this is the sort of thing we do for our clients anyway!!

I am waiting for some more info from the shed company and will keep you posted.

If, in the meantime, other shed dwellers have horror stories about timber buildings and layouts, PLEASE do tell...........

Barry


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Hi Barry. Excellent  idea, I don’t know anything about garden sheds and I haven’t got any horror stories to relate to you. All I can say is Bravo and good luck with your plans. Best wishes Kevin 

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Ensure the shed is fitted with good quality vapour barrier breathable.

Use Celotex or similar to fill all gaps between joists and aluminium tape them all.

The ply line the entire roof and walls

dependant on floor quality whether you want to insulate that .

Install from Day one heating that ensures the temperature never drops below a certain level.

Brian

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If you can get that shed for 3 grand Barry - send half a dozen of them over here !!!

That looks stunningly cheap compared to here.

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Hi Barry,
Go for a garden workshop, not shed. Higher specifications, and meant to be worked in, rather than just storage. Expect to pay 50% more,  but for that you usually get  better timbers, insulation, roof shingles, double insulation on windows.

Humidity and temperature in an airtight room is an issue. Consider active ventilation, or even a small heat pump. Solves heating and cooling with one system. Small ductless mini split would work for a 1000-1500 cubic feet space. 

NIgel



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Thanks guys - all good information to take forward on th search.

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Keep up the good work. By coincidence I found an photo of “ Hoo Junction Staff Halt “ which will fit into my plans, it is not dissimilar to your halt but not quite so posh. And this has given me an idea for the “ Background “ ? That is if I can find one, stretching into the distance a Depot full of “Locos “ or a sidings with “ Carriages “. Have you got any ideas? Of course, preferably my own layout, I had the space. Best wishes Kevin 

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Hi Kevin

Sometimes inspiration comes from a "Google" session.  Try googling things like "urban railway" or "railways in towns"

Barry

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Hi Barry . Thank you for your reply. I will do that. By the way you had better have good security on the shed.Best wishes Kevin 

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Hi Kevin

My current shed security is based on strong locks, reinforced doors, motion-detection flood lighting and a sign pointing out that two large dogs patrol the grounds.

In reality, the dogs are a just a big lazy tabby cat but I have had no trouble over the last 10 years.  We have open ground behind us but Mrs M has been very creative with her planting in this part of the garden - anything spikey, prickly, nasty and thick!!!

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Thank you for your reply. My overgrown garden features “ Blackthorn “ & “ Hawthorne “. I had intended to create a hedge, but, they are completely out of control, with gaps at ground level and no good for the purpose.Therefore Mrs M has a job on her hands, stout gloves being the order of the day. Best wishes Kevin 

Last edited on Mon Jul 15th, 2019 02:11 pm by Passed Driver

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Fill the gaps with Berberis purpura, As I was hedge timming at the weeked the scratches show the effectiveness..

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Hi the Q.  Thank you for your reply. I did have berberis in the previous garden , but when the local wildlife garden had some native shrubs/ trees I went and got some with the intention of letting them grow for a couple of years until I could layer them into a hedge, but, the plan went “ awry “. Now the job looks further away? If I could only get someone to cut off the top fifteen feet? the job would be simple.  Best wishes Kevin 

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Thanks Q, I will let Mrs M know.

I was also considering wiring the door knob for 240 volts but that does rather fly in the face of Health & Safety!!

B

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As part of my programme of packing away Yarslow Mkk II I have started to give all of the locos a proper service before they are boxed.  Wheels are being cleaned, oily parts oiled and any of those horrid Bachmann/Mainline plastic wheel inserts sorted out.

I am also adding front end details where the couplings have been removed for engines that will only be running in one direction.

When cleaning the wheels, I have just come across this;



This is the tender of one of my V2's.  The black stuff on the wheel bottom right is track doodoo!!!  The tender is not involved with the pick-up process so in the past, I have probably glossed over it.  However, this deposit is, no doubt, then finding its way onto the track with inevitable consequences.  The centre right wheel has been scraped prior to cleaning with white spirit and the left hand set have been fully cleaned.

What concerns me now is the state of the wheels on the wagons and coaches.  I read somewhere that plastic wheels are dreadful at picking up crud and although most of the rolling stock runs on metal wheels, there are still some older plastic wheel-sets in use.  These tender wheels are metal and they are bad so I dread to think what the plastic ones are like!!

Barry

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The beauty of plastic wheels Barry, is that you can't see the gunk !!!

I'd ditch the plastic wheels ASAP.  I note you use white spirit for cleaning - doesn't that leave a residue ?  I use IPA and it's fantastic !!  (that's Isopropyl Alcohol - not India Pale Ale - which is also fantastic ...................... :lol: :lol:)

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Hi Peter

I have always used white spirit without any issues - I use a cotton bud to clean and the other end to "dry".  I do have some IPA and know that its good but white spirit is a fraction of the price!!

Barry

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Just back from a sunny Liverpool (where we watched the best netball World Cup final ever) and back to the melting tarmac of West London.  Lots of great houses and projects in ScouseLand so we are very hopeful of finding a nice railway room with a house attached very quickly. :lol: :lol:

The Estate Agents in Lillypool all tried to maintain a professional face when told that we wanted either a room or space to build 26ft x 16ft, especially when we told them what it was for.  However, they all knuckled down and soon most were talking about the "railway" without fits of laughter.

I expect that they will be swapping stories at the Estate Agents Convention and having a good giggle at my expense!!

Barry

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You just need to remind them it's the second most popular hobby in UK Barry - after fishing .....................

When the likes of Pete Waterman, Rod Stewart and Jools Holland are right out there in front, it's no laughing matter. :thumbs :thumbs

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Its been a mad couple of weeks what with dismantling Yarslow and the continual house-hunting from 200+ miles away!!

I have packed away all of the locos and rolling stock and removed trees and buildings and telegraph poles and such like.  I use plastic crates to store stuff because I know it will travel safely.  Breaking down the storage cartridges has yielded about 60 yards of track (there were 48 of them!) and I am going to start on the loco cartridges this week - there are 52 of them all about 12 inches long so I will end with loads of short bits of track.

The woodwork from the cartridges and layout might be re-cycled but there is a lot of 4mm MDF which is cut into 3 inch strips and contains pins/glue damage so I'll probably junk it.  The cartridge bases were 12mm MDF, again cut into 3 inch strips so not sure what use they might be.  Given the quantity of them, I might hang on to them for now.

I have already made contact with the model railway club in Southport - they meet in an old crossing keepings building next to the current Southport-Liverpool line so there is modern image right outside the door.

This week should see the start of the lifting of the actual Yarslow track - a long process as I am intending to recycle the pointwork and re-use as much track as possible.  I know that PVA can be re-activated if you get it wet and so I will try to spray it to see if that loosens the ballast at all.

Does anyone have any advice for removing ballast that has been PVA'd down?  I could simply dig out the stones from between each sleeper but that sounds a long and painful job.

The Peco point motors will be surplus unless I use them in the storage yard - I have moved over to SEEPs on recent projects.

In other news, we have found a number of railway rooms with decent houses attached :lol: :lol: and so it should not be too hard to get the new layout sited, albeit that is probably going to be 12 months away.  At Mrs M's suggestion, the plan I have posted is being reworked to see if it fits into slightly different shapes - say 20ft square. 

It feels weird not having a layout to run things on, no books to read, no magazines to pour over, no tools to do anything with.  Its gonna be long cold winter............

Barry

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Rather than spraying, use shop towels or heavy duty shop paper wipes wet, cover with cling or foil overnight.  Old towels are ideal. Track should come up using a broad blade underneath. 

Using a tall bucket or deep tray soak the rails and points for 24 hours using hot water  to start with a squirt of cheap washing up liquid. Use a large nylon bristle brush scrub off ballast from the rails/sleepers, use a smaller one for the points.  Nigel


Works for me.


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Thanks Nigel I will give that a try. Its odd that in the dozens of books I have from the 1940's to present day telling me how to lay track, there is little information on lifting it again!!
I will find a plastic tray to soak the track in as suggested for the final clean up

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Thanks Nigel I will give that a try. Its odd that in the dozens of books I have from the 1940's to present day telling me how to lay track, there is little information on lifting it again!!
I will find a plastic tray to soak the track in as suggested for the final clean up

Barry

:lol: :lol: :lol:They all assume that a layout is for life and the track plan is perrrfect (well, if you followed their advice). Just watch that the small springs on Peco points don't go walkabout. If they do then Peco will supply replacement ones - just ask. From past experience about 85-90% of the track will be recoverable. If you have 3-foot sections soldered together via joiners just cut out the soldered sections using Xurons or similar before starting to soften the glue with the wet towels.

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Hey Barry, I dread the day I'd have to move Teasel, it sounds terrible! Sounds like you are doing a good job it though.
I am originally from Ainsdale in Southport and where all my family resides, will be there at the weekend. Hope you find somewhere good and big enough to setup your large layout!

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Chris

Thanks for the encouragement.  The Southport area is certainly very nice and I cn see why you go back!!

The house/railway room hunt is looking very positive.

Barry

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Hi Barry,

It's taken me a while to go thru some of your project after your kind words about my project. I now have a better understanding of your amusing comments.

You have great plans and I hope you can find the right solution. Elsewhere I've read of major issues of warping baseboards when humidity moves around, something likely to be an issue in a stand-alone dedicated unit unless you are prepared to keep it at a relatively steady temperature to help stabilise humidity. Someone early on in your topic commented on just this issue.

Assuming limited air flow in / out then as temperature rises and falls relative humidity as a % falls / rises quite markedly. Correct choice of baseboard materials and complete sealing of the timbers may help here.

We are lucky in Melbourne. Summer is bone dry and in winter the wetter weather coincides with the time we heat the house. All the same the timber load bearing frame construction (under an external brick "veneer") of the house creaks and moves around thru the seasons.

Good luck with your project,

Colin

Last edited on Tue Aug 13th, 2019 05:42 pm by Colin W

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Thanks Colin

The "Railway room" would, in perfect circumstances, be a brick built affair attached to the house with a proper double-skin wall (blockwork and brick), rendered on the inside to create, in effect, a living room.  This can be heated by an extension of the central heating system or separate panel heaters.  At the other end of the scale, it might be a wooden building in the garden!!

I am keen (as is Mrs M fortunately) on the former rather than the latter.

Either way, insulation and temperature control are key as you say.  My present shed, although smaller than the one planned, is fully insulated and heated by oil filled panel heaters - cheap to run and easy to control using timers.  I use 12mm MDF baseboards supported by a 2" x 1" frame with bearers spaced no more than 15 inchaes apart.  In the 8 years or so that I have used this approach, I have not suffered any warping.  However, aware of the limitations of MDF I will probably go for 9mm ply on the same framework style for the new layout.  I have built a few test boards with this surface with success.

Barry

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Barry,

You've already some excellent solutions for large scale ballast removal. Just to add my bit, where I needed to remove ballast from a tricky or small location I added some kiddies bubble blowing liquid to water and pipetted this into place.

The bubble mix has glycerol and detergent so the final solution is much thicker than just water + detergent and helps keep the moisture where its needed. Glycerol doesn't evaporate but retains the water and the ballast is fully softened (without covering) overnight. Track can be rinsed off afterwards if required. This is what I used to remove ballast for inserting my decoupling magnets between sleepers. The bubble mix is dirt cheap so can be used ad libitum.

Colin

Last edited on Wed Aug 14th, 2019 05:45 pm by Colin W

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Hi Colin

I like the sound of that - removing ballast and blowing bubbles - what fun!!

Barry

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The sight of the shed with only bare baseboards and part-lifted track is a sorry one. :cry:

However, with draincocks wide open and the machine in full forward gear, the Lillypool-bound train is leaving the station - we have found a suitable flat to move into up there while we sell the London terminus.  Once suitably shunted into the little lay-bye, we will wait for the road to move into the railway-room-with-house-attached.  Its a smallish step but the wheels are turning!!

Barry

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Delighted to hear this news Barry - I know what it's like dismantling a layout when there isn't a new home for it on the horizon ......................

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So, after years of trying to be as realistic as possible I have finally got very close.  Not a train in sight and lifted track everywhere - very 1965.  :lol: :lol: :lol:

I thought I should comment on the helpful ideas given recently reagrding lifting track that has been ballasted.

To start, let me outline my methods of track-laying.  Cork sheeting is laid first, sometimes glued with PVA on curves but often unglued.  The track is pinned on top and then ballasted with Jarvis or Woodland or similar finescale granite chips.  The chips are sprayed with a water/washing up liquid solution and then watered down PVA (again with a drop of washing up liquid) is applied through an eye dropper.  The whole thing is often given 2 glue treatments to ensure its stuck.

I found out recently, although I think it was something I knew but had forgotten, that PVA is reactivated if you wet it.  Based on this knowledge and the advice given above, I sprayed the track with a water/washing up liquid solution until it was very wet.  Having removed ALL of the track pins, the track can be GENTLY teased upwards with a large flat blade.  Pointwork can be gently wiggled from side to side if required.

This is not a job to rush.  If you get disheartened and think you should be doing it faster, have a quick look at track and pointwork prices - it focusses the mind!

Once lifted, I clean the track with an old toothbrush.

It helps to clean up as you go.  The baseboard will be covered with wet (and now sticky) ballast, track pins and mess.  I hoovered up after each piece was lifted.

I had about an hour spare tonight and have lifted 2 large radius points, the 3-way and a curved unit along with several pieces of track.  Short bridging pieces of track were sacrificed to get at the pointwork and I will not be lifting the track buried under filler.

So far so good.  Thanks for the advice chaps

Barry

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Tedius Barry but as you say, if the alternative is buying new, it's certainly worth the effort.

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Indeed.  AnyRail kindly (cruelly) provides a list of required materials when you produce a design.  The Great Northern Railway (as it is slowly becoming known) will use 125 turnouts of various flavours from catch/trap points through to double slips and 3-ways.  That makes what I am doing now so vital - any unit I can save is one less to buy.

It also gived the total trackage length so you can plan how many 'yard lengths' you need.

I read that, add on rail joiners & track pins and then need a lie down!!

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: I then need a lie down!!

Barry

with a Bex & a cuppa ?

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Wow - 125 turnouts - that's a mortgage in it's own right Barry !!!

I'd buy shares in Peco now if I were you.................

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My post of 30th April 2019 shows the intended trackplan with all 125 turnouts.  A good number are located in the storage area where I want to be able to select a track and just drive a train out.  This luxury has cost me about 2 dozen sets of points!!

It is my intention to float a shopping list to Hattons and Rails to see who is prepared to offer a discount for a bulk buy - if I can pursuade them that I am not opening a rival model shop!!!!  I might also ask Peco direct for a quote, especially given the number of yards of plain track I also need.

Who dares wins............

p.s. Sorry Sol, a "Bex" - I thought that was a type of lager :lol: :lol:

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: My post of 30th April 2019 shows the intended trackplan with all 125 turnouts.  A good number are located in the storage area where I want to be able to select a track and just drive a train out.  This luxury has cost me about 2 dozen sets of points!! .....

Barry
What? That's almost twice the number on my entire Westown layout. Are you really sure about this "Going Large" thing? :twisted: 

Colin

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Colin W wrote: Barry Miltenburg wrote: My post of 30th April 2019 shows the intended trackplan with all 125 turnouts.  A good number are located in the storage area where I want to be able to select a track and just drive a train out.  This luxury has cost me about 2 dozen sets of points!! .....

Barry
What? That's almost twice the number on my entire Westown layout. Are you really sure about this "Going Large" thing? :twisted: 

Colin



Currently my empire runs 95 turnouts with another 6 being added.

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With apologies for the sideways pictures (iphone photos ALWAYS do this to me!), I present the results of Dr Beechings work in the Yarslow area.  The first photo shows the baseboard framework being dismantled.  I used 2 inch x 2 inch (nominal) for the main spars and 2 inch x 1 inch for the cross bracing every 12 inches.  This supported a 9mm MDF top which did not warp at all during its 8 year life.  Legs were 2 inch x 2 inch.

The second photo shows the benefit of asking how to lift ballasted track.  Thanks to the inputs of the guys on the forum, I have rescued all but 1 section of track.  The bit I lost was on about its 3rd layout anyway so nothing lost really.  All of the pointwork was saved along with the vast majority of wiring and, of course, all of the point motors.  The short bits of track on the shelf in the first photo is the "junk track" pile - 5 short sections!!

The non-scenic side of the layout was all Peco Settrack and this will be passed on to my grandson although I might hold back the curved points as he is only 8 and I am not sure I can explain the geometry of them!!

I estimate that I will not have trains running now for about 2 years as the house move and inevitable renovation progress.  I will have access to my day-to-day tools but not the bigger stuff like airbrushes, soldering iron etc.  With this in mind, I am keen to get into making a few Parkside wagon kits and maybe even some more Ian Kirk coaches if I can find them.

Its already feeling strange to have broken Yarslow down and packed everything away.  The mental health benefits of a layout are, I am finding, somewhat underestimated.

Barry

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It is mentally devastating Barry i know myself when my wife announced it was time for us to move a few years back.
At the time it was a mental kick in the teeth although i knew at some point it would occur.

All i can say is myself and others have been through it and once you have your new place that layout enthusiasm soon bounces back.

Brian

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Best foot forward.

I have now completely dismantled the layout and most of it has gone to the local recycling centre aka the tip.

The pile of saved track has been cleaned up and totals 72 pieces of re-usable lengths.  Most are 36 inches and about 20% are over 24 inches.  There are also a dozen shorter sections and I rescued about 40 12-inch sections from the old loco cartridges.  Every bit saved is one less bit to buy.

Despite all I hear about Brexit (and everything that's blamed on it) the house sale is warming up and we have bought a small flat as a foothold in Southport.  The idea is to move from here to the Southport flat and then find a house/layout room combination that suits at our leisure.  It takes all the stress out but I reckon I will be lucky to see trains running within 2 years. 

That doesn't bother me as I continue to tinker with the detailed design and I will put a series of You Tube videos together telling the story of the design.  The idea is that I have made loads of mistakes to get the design to the current state and if that helps others avoid making the same ones, all well and good.

The hardest thing is not having my library - everything is packed so I have no reference material to hand at all.  That hit me this week when I noticed that Hattons had a number of Mk I TSO and SO coaches for sale at bargain prices.  Ordinarily I would dive into Steve Banks' books to review how these vehicles were used and whether it would be worth getting some.  No can do :cry:

Ah well, at least it saved me some money!!

A final thought has hit me.  Yarslow is a name constructed from "Yarmouth" where we have a house on the Isle of Wight and "Hounslow" which is the London Borough where I live.  If I move to Southport, do I have to change to Yarport or even Southmouth!!!

Barry

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Yarport sounds better, Barry....

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Yes indeed - Yarport flows  off the tongue very easily.

You could have "Livermouth", "Yarpool" or "Yarsey"  as being in the same sort of area............................

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South Yarport

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Barry,

Re iPhone photos' orientation, my solution is to email the photo to my non Apple PC, open the photo in whatever photo editor, rotate as required and do a "Save As" to save with new name. That fixes it and since I'm posting from my desktop there's not that much extra work involved anyway.

Colin





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Cheers Colin :doublethumb

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...........or just take the photo with a camera ............................. :hmm

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Why not call the layout your Surname Barry  thats a good sounding Layout .


"Miltenburg"


Brian

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It would need to be continental Brian ............................. :hmm

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Hi all

I only took the photo with the phone because I have packed the camera somewhere and couldn't find it when I wanted it!!  I have now located it so should not suffer from malrotationalism any more.

Brian - Miltenberg is a town in Germany that I have been to ("berg" = "mountain" in German).  Probably a bit too germanic but a nice idea all the same.

Guys - I have been contemplating the name thing and will probably stick with Yarslow although South Yarport sounds good.  The first half dozen layouts I built were all called "Midworth" simply because I liked the name and I'm a creature of habit.  The other proposed layout names (Highmarsh and Trinity Square) have also been with me for decades - its funny how some things just stick.

Finished stripping out the old Yarslow shed today so nothing remains of the layout other than the entire interior is painted sky blue and there are bits of scenic flock stuck to the backscene which I can't get off.  I have rescued a load of 2" x 2" (nominal) timber lengths that look useful and about 200 screws that held it all together.

On a more constructive note, I have found all manner of tools and stuff that I have lost over the past few years - found down behind baseboards and piles of shed contents.

I'm also saving a small fortune by not continuously buying wagons and stuff!

We are heading north again in a couple of weeks to continue the search for a railway room/house.  During recent discussions, I laid out 24ft x 16ft in our present garden just to get Mrs M used to the idea of the actual size.  I am still feeling somewhat guilty that we have found loads of lovely houses but nothing yet with the right space for the layout.  I have started wondering whether I am being too ambitious but Mrs M simply said "We are not compromising - we'll find something to take the layout".

She's an angel..........

Barry

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Hi Barry. Nominal  2” x 2” does that mean the timber that we got  “lumbered “ with since we joined the EEC?  I preferred real 1” x 11/2” or two be two , that way you knew where you stood. Best wishes Kevin 

Last edited on Wed Sep 18th, 2019 02:00 pm by Passed Driver

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Agreed Kevin - I much preferred the days when you could buy timber from a timber yard run by an old grumpy bloke in a brown workshop coat.  We all knew what "2 by 2" meant.  One of the joys of the Isle of Wight is a chain of shops called "Hursts" where that still happens.  I can buy nails by the pound and cord by the yard.

These days, I have to find my metric converter app on the phone and my reading glasses to work out whether I need 50mm or 44mm timber.

I must be getting old.

Barry

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Dimensional lumber is almost always nominal now. What 50+ years ago was a real 2x2" is now 1.5x1.5" . 2x1" is now 1.75x0.75" . It all started when old growth trees ran out and smaller trees were being used. You can get it 2x2" from a mill shop, or whatever size you want,  it just costs more, especially if you only want a few feet. Or cut it to the size you want on the table saw.  Strength wise there is no real difference between actual or nominal. 

Those old guys in brown coats were usually just as useless as their modern day equivalents. Mill shops and speciality lumber stores excepted, where they make what they sell. 


Nigel

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I know Bunnings is a dirty word in the UK, but here their Structural Timber is what it claims to be dimensionally; 70*35mm is just that and with a bit of care can be bought reasonably straight!  However as I noted over on Westown, in WA you can only get Treated Structural timber, the whole state seems to be built on one enormous termite mound! (sorry to anyone from WA).

Colin


Last edited on Sat Sep 21st, 2019 12:37 am by Colin W

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My experience is that rough sawn timber is the stated dimension.  It's in the planing that the dimension disappears.

1.75" x 1.75" started life as 2" x 2" but, in planing, they removed 0.25".  I don't think it is now but, several years ago it was specified as PSE - planed, squared and edged.  In the old days, the planing, squaring and edging was done by the carpenter on site.  Except in construction, hardly anyone uses rough sawn timber these days - we all like our smooth, neat square timber.

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Anything but PSE unfortunately, even from the mill. I always check, but for baseboard frames it is not that crucial, +/- 1/64" -1/32" (~0.4-0.8mm) can usually be accommodated. Helps if the proper tools are available (planer, table saw and radial saw set at 90°). What is important is that the top is square, especially so with modular or semi-modular setups.

Nigel

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With the final demise of Yarslow in the shed I am able to report that we have a buyer for the London home and so the move to LillyPool looks set for a pre-Christmas schedule.

The end of the need to sit tidily and be forever ready for estate agent (Realtor) viewings means that I have some time to tie up a few odd ends.  I started to pack up the embyonic Long Dyke baseboard and promptly dropped it so I have scrapped the board completely and lifted the track.

The above mentioned plan is version (about) 28 and shows that I have revised the junction at Yarslow and am now using 2 single slipswitches.  I had originally dismissed this as an idea because it did not enable a train on the main line to run up the branch - BUT - I had forgotten that this arrangement would allow a train in the loop platform
to cross onto the branch instead.  A much better idea and a better arrangement for the lay-bye as well.

I have taken the opportunity to revise the branch line stations now that Long Dyke is somewhat dented ( :sad:) and the keen eyed amongst you will notice a subtle change at Trinity Square where the loco yard crossover has been moved back beyond the signal gantry an therefore (more prototypically) within the "station limits".  I have also played around with the siding arrangements at Roe Halt (for Roe Boxes factory), providing a siding facing in the opposite direction to the factory sidings.  This will increase operational interest at this halt but if the new arrangement looks too busy when laid out, I will revert to the older plan.

The final change is the noted "25ft x 16ft" rather than 24ft of the old plan.  This is a bit meglomaniac on my part but simply reflects the size of the building rather than the space occupied by the layout.  We are due to travel north again soon to look at some more potential houses although if the current wet weather continues in the UK we will be taking a boat rather than the car!!  Some of the targets have space for the new Empire so we are travelling with hope.

One final story - the estimator from a national removal company (formerly owned by British Railways) came yesterday to give me a quote to move.  Whan we got to the shed I showed him the empty space pointing out that I had dismantled the layout but had some timber and other boxes of stuff to include in the move.  "OK", he said" its probably best that you dismantled your layout because they are difficult to move".  Top marks for using the term "layout", not "train set" - he's half way to getting the job!!

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:
One final story - the estimator from a national removal company (formerly owned by British Railways) came yesterday to give me a quote to move.  Whan we got to the shed I showed him the empty space pointing out that I had dismantled the layout but had some timber and other boxes of stuff to include in the move.  "OK", he said" its probably best that you dismantled your layout because they are difficult to move".  Top marks for using the term "layout", not "train set" - he's half way to getting the job!!

Barry

Perhaps there is something to thank Channel 5 for :lol:


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Hi Barry.  I thought that I had read something about a move to the West Country, Lorna Doone and all that romantic stuff. Will they send a “ Horse and Cart “ with a Container on the back ? Bearing in mind the channel 5 comments or is that enough romantic dreams around Railways. Best wishes with the move. Kevin 

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Hi Kevin

The move is actually to BeatleLand near the Mersey.  Wrong side of the Pennines for my models but as I used to model those lovely red ones that struggled over The Long Drag, I will sleep at night with a clear conscience!!

For those interested, YouTube can be used to track down a film called "LMS Freight 1940" - or similar.

One of the many aspects of railway travel featured in it is a family moving house using a container that is collected on a mechanical horse and transported by rail to their new town.  The loading of the container by crane onto the wagon would make anyone interested in Health & Safety cry into their rulebook.  Worth a look if you can find it.

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Thank you. That title sounds familiar? But I cannot find it now. An old driver I know did hook me up with a series of British Transport films were were from way back, I will keep looking. Best wishes Kevin 

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Those old British Transport films are wonderful Barry.  I'm sad to say, some of them take me back to my childhood ........................

Yes, H & S in those days was more likely to stand for "Hovis and Spread" than tin hats ......................replacement labour was both plentiful and cheap !!

I think I've seen that film about the house move but they are always worth another watch.  :thumbs

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Hi all

I have made a few comments on other threads about our impending house move so rather than hijack those, I thought it might be of interest to bring the story up to date on my own page.

Whilst it is still in the lap of the Gods somewhat, our move date looks to be the 25th of November.  I was born in the town I currently live in (although have lived elsewhere lots) so was always a little bit sad to be saying goodbye.  However, the 25th is my late Mum's birthday so I feel its her little way of being with us as we head North.

This week we should complete the puchase of a flat in Lillypool Land to give us a bolt-hole when we move,  We have already started looking for a suitable railway shed with a nice house attached :lol: and here I must mention the outstanding contribution made by Mrs M for making it quite clear to the purveyors of houses in the area that the railway room is a "must-have" on our shopping list.  You can imagine that there are quite a few estate agents (Realtors) looking to separate me from my bag of Shekels and she has made it quite clear that no railway room = no deal!!

The front runner at present in the house race offers a nice garden capable of taking a wooden building some 28ft x 18ft whilst still leaving sufficient room for the veg and the chickens AND still space for the BBQ/patio/flowers.  Funnily enough, the house is quite ordinary but we are willing/able to move the odd wall to get what we want.

This weekend has come to an end with yet another room here stuffed full of cardboard boxes, fewer bits of furniture/decoration on display and more basic living.  Its a bit like when I first got married and used a packing crate as a bedside table until I could afford a proper one!!

Pickfords (who used to be part of the British Transport Commission) are bracing themselves for the big ordeal although there is a mountain of boxes containing various bits of salvaged layout, rolling stock and buildings which I will take up in the car.  Mrs M is being trusted with the cat and the guitar collection in her car.  Three guesses where my priorities lay :lol: :lol:

There will be no layout options in the flat but hopefully, that phase will only last a few months and then we can get our teeth into a new house and I can start thinking about the new layout.  Mrs M has again come up trumps by declaring that my bad back entitles me to some help from a local carpenter when it comes to lining/insulating the shed and building the baseboards.  Is she wonderful or what?  In exchange I have offered a team of landscapers to bash whatever garden we get into shape - oh and to lay a suitable concrete base for the aforementioned shed of course!!

More news as it comes through

Barry

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Hi Barry
Moving house is always a nightmare.  Not  just the practicalities, but the wrench of leaving a home.  Sounds like you have a diamond in Mrs M though!  Hopefully all will go quickly and smoothly and you can share the birth of the new railway....

Michael


Last edited on Mon Nov 11th, 2019 07:01 pm by Headmaster

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Headmaster wrote: Hi Barry
........ Hopefully all will go quickly and smoothly and you can share the birth of the new railway....

Michael



Thanks Michael.  The process has been made more nightmarish by the the less-than-helpful support the vendors solicitor have given her client.  [Those who know of my lack of tact will be proud of that statement!!!]

I still continue to tweak the trackplan and think I have reached the "v.30" mark - the lastest change is to the alignment of the storage siding tracks to gain a bit more length and to do away with the few dead-end sidings on the outside of the up line loops (up goes clockwise for those referring to the old plan).  In the absence of anything constructive to get on with, I find tinkering in this way quite therapeutic.  Its surprising what little improvements I have made without lifting a scalpel blade or paint brush.

Big day today as we signed (what seemed like) hundreds of bits of paper to sell our house and buy a flat (and its Freehold).  It also gave me the opportunity to see the first bill for all thats been done by the Solicitor and the Inland Revenue who have taken 3% in Stamp Duty.  That little lot adds up to a huge pile of pointwork, wagons, Woodland Scenics ballast...................................... :sad: :sad: :sad:

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Hi allJust a quick note to confirm we are now in Liverland and will start the search proper for a suitable railway room with attached house:lol::lol:

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That's great news Barry - hope the move went according to plan.

Do you have some kind of target time for finding your railway room with house attached ?

I understand there are Scouse courses at some local foreign language schools - have you enrolled ?  Just don't get involved in which colour you support - red or blue - it will always end in tears ...............

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Come on you Toffees !!!

Bill

(Francoscouse)

Last edited on Fri Nov 29th, 2019 12:50 pm by Longchap

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Thanks for your kind thoughts guys.

Depending on your point of view, I am either very diplomatic or a bit of a wall-sitter.  I was a Liverpool supporter as a boy but as a fan of the women's game, will support Everton as they play some of their games at Southport FC - our nearest team.

Peter - The search for the house/railway room starts immediately but given that there is bound to be work to be done in the new house, I have written off 9-12 months before I can really get into the new layout.  That is not a problem because I have joined the local MRC (5 minutes walk from where we are living now) and will continue to stay in touch with YMRC and my You Tube subscriptions.  It also gives me a chance to start collecting track, scenery bits and anything else that I spot going cheap!!

I did have half an idea to built a tiny shunting plank whilst I am in the flat but to be honest, I don't intend to be here too long and wanted to concentrate my efforts on house-hunting!

Barry

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Hi all

Its Friday 13th and we have today bought a house - good idea? - I'll let you know.

The house is a double-fronted Victorian pile that has been emptied so it's a blank canvas to make our own.  Just what we wanted when we started out as it happens.

The garden has an alcove which is 26ft x 16ft and the postcode (zipcode) is my wife's initials - it's a sign we felt :lol:.

There now follows about 9 months hard graft whilst we go through the legal paperwork, get a wall moved to create another bathroom, re-wire the house thoughout, flatten an outside WC, replace it with a small extension, build a new kitchen, add some patio doors and tweak the plumbing.  Simple enough :lol: :lol:.

Not being ones to sit on our laurels, Mrs M and I have today commissioned a builder and surveyor to produce quotes and timescales whilst I have sourced both the railway shed and the guy to build the base.  In the wings are a plumber and roofer who we lined up earlier in the week.  Financially it sounds a bit scary but we got the place cheap so have a big budget for building work.  As an aside, because the house was cheap, the Stamp Duty and other direct costs are also less than originally thought.  The £1500 saved on these fees will pay for the track I need in the shed!!

Luckily, the local Model Railway Society have a big test track and as I have the locomotive fleet with me (rolling stock only went to storage), I can run some stuff.  I also have my toolbox so can do a bit of maintenance, oiling etc as well.  A local Train Fair yielded another B1 with wheel issues - I got it for £40 and know that an hour's work will get it working perfectly again - it gives me something to do!!

Happy days

Barry

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Hi Barry and congratulations for all those happy days ahead indeed !!!

The building work seems almost trivial and will simply become part of the great adventure for you and the bride, so all possible good furtune to you both.

After 7 years of work on our place, I am finally looking forward in getting to grips with the railway room next year, as I've very nearly almost finished the barn, but despite any possible delays in my home town, it sounds as if there's going to be continuous model railwaying occuring for you.

Enjoy the ride,

Bill

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It seems you have enough now on your plate to keep you busy for a few months....

I do hope the house wasn't cheap because of it almost falling down or it is next door to a car race track...

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Actually the house is going to be next to a very large shed full of model railway :mutley :mutley :mutley

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Excellent news Barry..... sounds like you have found just what you wanted.  It is a wonderful feeling to make something special and unique to you.... it sounds like you are already on the way..... exciting!  
But enough about the railway shed, sounds like you have a bit to do on the home front too!

Michael


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That's great news Barry - don't forget to show us the pics - of both the little house and the huge railway empire ...............................

Have you started your Scouse lessons yet or are you already fluent ? :roll:

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Hi all



Here is the back garden of the new house - what a mess!!  Mrs M will have her work cut out to get this looking pretty but I have no doubt that she will succeed.

The outbuilding on the far right of the picture is actually outside the kitchen door and will (we hope) be replaced by a small extension to house the laundry and an outside loo.  Behind that, and behind the three fence panels/trellis is a space which is 26ft x 16ft - spooky as that is exactly the size I wanted for the shed.  We may be able to have an extra few feet on the shed to create a workshop in the end and somewhere the motorcycle and lawnmower can live.  That also increases security/insulation for the layout.  I have permission to increase the length of the railway by a couple of feet as well if required.
:Happy :Happy

Nothing much will happen now as everything closes down over the Xmas holiday but it gives us a chance to take stock.  The local MRC has a test track so I can run some stuff and chat with fellow modellers/get my "fix" until work starts on the house.

I'll keep you posted.

Barry

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Just a small garden then Barry :lol:


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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi all

Here is the back garden of the new house - what a mess!!  Mrs M will have her work cut out to get this looking pretty but I have no doubt that she will succeed.

The outbuilding on the far right of the picture is actually outside the kitchen door and will (we hope) be replaced by a small extension to house the laundry and an outside loo. 
:Happy :Happy

Barry

Crumbs, when we left Liverpool in '59, my grandparents still had their outside WC, in fact their only WC, then Dylan in the 60s said that times they are a changin and now in the 20s. you Barry are putting in an outside WC!

You just have to love nostalgia, goes with the steam trains!

I've just put in our 6th WC here, although the only outside one is original.

That looks a great railway home Barry, which I'm sure you and the Mrs will have it the way you like it before too long. My very best good wishes for a wonderful and trouble free refurb.

Bill

Last edited on Mon Dec 16th, 2019 07:38 am by Longchap

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I'm pleased you've got some thinking/planning time Barry - it will allow you to realise that you've got things the wrong way round............... :roll:

Let Mrs M have the 26 x 16 space behind the trellis for her garden (easier for her to prep) and you roof in the rest for the railway ..............

Joking aside, it does look like a useful space and, once tidied up, will be a superb garden - I'll watch out for it in Ideal Homes magazine............ !!  :cheers


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Bill

I was just re-readng my post with a view to producing an update and realise that I said "outside loo" when I meant "downstairs loo". 
:thud

As far as updates go - well not a lot has happened whilst the country drags itself back to work in Janaury.  I am still waiting on builders, solicitors, estate agents (Realtors) and shed manufacturers to get back to me with either quotes, information or paperwork.

Something I have discovered is that the local MRC entire clubroom is actually smaller that my proposed layout.

:hmm

For the first time I am starting to appreciate the enormity of the job I have signed up for but that is more of an inspiration than an issue.  The Club has a test track around the walls on the upper floor that is 28 feet long.  I took a couple of locomotives over last week and ran them with 8 coach/28 wagons trains.  That gave me goosebumps because they looked awesome - even with bare baseboards and no scenery.  I found myself doing that schoolboy thing of putting your eye down at model track level as the train went past!!

On a side note, the clubroom is a former station house from the 1870's, recently refurbished for the club by our landlords Network Rail.  The main Southport-Liverpool line is right outside so we get a 3-car soundtrack every 15 minutes!!


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For some bigger trains although not full size, Southport has a nice model engineering club a the top side of Victoria park, off Rotten Row.

Been there a few times on the Caravan club site next door.

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We share some members.  The bigger (live steam) scales seem to instill a more social element into the modelling - meeting up to play trains with a glass of wine and a hot dog seems alien to those us working in 4mm.

Shame!!!

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Replace the Wine and Hot dog, with tea and biscuits and the idea sounds much better, but , before you get carried away, remember that this is a forum and not a MRC. Best wishes Kevin 

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Hello all

Just a quick update regarding the shed.  The suppliers mentioned that a big shed usually bumps into Planning Permission and I was asked to check that all was OK.

What I now discover is that they meant was Building Control - that is a set of rules (probably not unique to the UK and referred to as Building Code in the US I think) that certain buildings need to comply with.  Part A is structural, Part B is fire-related etc.  I am very familiar with Part P which is the electrical section.  The basic idea is that, by following Building Regulations, whatever you do does not carry a risk of death or injury or damage to persons or surroundings.

The local Inspector will be checking that my building, as it exceeds a floor area of 30sqMetres, complies - the main concern appears to be the fact that is built out of a combustible material i.e. wood.  To become compliant with Regs I need to treat it with a flame retardant paint or coating. I have found a company to supply such stuff and then certificate its use.  Total cost about £175.  Fabby!!

The latest big change has been to go back and split the shed in half - 28ft x 16ft for the railway and again a separate 16ft x 8ft workshop to be used as a store and "garage" area.  That makes my bit easier to seal, line, heat and secure so good news.

The process of buying the house drags on but with a bit of luck we will be in, all building work & decoration done and work in the shed started by Christmas.  The shed itself will be erected early on as we need to use it as a storehouse.

More meetings this week with architects, engineers and others so we inch closer each day.  Both the anticipated costs and my consumption of Scotch seem to be going up in equal proportion!!!

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:
The latest big change has been to go back and split the shed in half - 28ft x 16ft for the railway and again a separate 16ft x 8ft workshop to be used as a store and "garage" area.  That makes my bit easier to seal, line, heat and secure so good news.


At the same time effortlessly redefining the words "half" and "bit" I think! :???:

28/36 = 78% by my reckoning and I know I'll have no joy asking SWMBO for a "bit" more room for W-H using your definition!

Colin


Last edited on Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 07:40 pm by Colin W

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Colin

Mrs M has very many talents but Maths comes some way down the list :twisted: :twisted:

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Colin

Mrs M has very many talents but Maths comes some way down the list :twisted: :twisted:

Barry

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Is it just Building Regs you'll need Barry or full planning ?  I'd guess it probably depends on whether or not they class the "shed" as a permanent fixture or "relocatable" …………………..

Here in France, we have an odd system in that anything over 20 sq m requires planning but under that, you're simply supposed to inform the Mayor about it.  Naturally, regardless of size, anything more than single story needs planning.

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28 x11.75 would have avoided the hassle. As would 27.5 x 12.

Nigel

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A shed can be made of any material in the UK,  being wooden makes no difference. In most circumstances a temporary building (which could be just a tent) can only be on site without council permission for 28days.
The maximum size for any building regs exempt build is,
 30 square metres  floor area. 
3 metre high single pitched roof 
4metres high with two or more pitches. 

If made of flammable material,  it cannot be placed with 2 metres of your property boundary. ****
You can cover up to half your garden with shed. 

*****The most ignored law on buildings I know of,  most people's sheds are stuffed into a corner.  Councils ignore that,  unless someone complains. The bigger you build your shed the more likely someone will complain.. 

Of course if you live in a conservation area,  a national park or similar, all automatic permissions are off, you're stuffed. 

PS the Norfolk Broads are NOT a national  park. 

Last edited on Mon Feb 3rd, 2020 01:55 pm by The Q

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There is another issue, certainly here in Oz but might be in UK as well, that with the advent of commercial satellite imagery, Local Councils have become significant customers. They may be watching you.

It's only a theory but it's not hard to imagine with modern computing power that changes made to blocks could be detected by comparing image recordings. If that all sounds far-fetched let me illustrate. We were looking for quotes for Solar Power on our roof. In my first inquiry, once they had our address they looked up the available imagery for our house. Since just a month before we'd had a major overhanging branch removed I pointed out that might not yet be shown. Unfazed the guy say, "oh yes, I can see that from comparing the last two shots!" "Big Brother" is here as the detail they have access to is scary, you should see the photos in their quote documentation, makes Google maps look like a Camera Obscura. 

A friend in the building trade told me Councils are using the technology to monitor changes on sites and in installed buildings, I suspect less for compliance than ensuring rate-able values are updated to maximise income!

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Interesting comment from Colin. Our local equivalent of a council uses satellite imagery (the national geographic service is right next door), as does the county. One to check compliance with code, the other taxes.

Change the front door color? Nope. Change the style of window? Nope. Add on or large shed? A ton and months if not years of paperwork. And probably no, as all neighbors are automatically contacted for opinion which is voiced at a public meeting, video recorded and posted on their website. 

Move a couple counties over where houses sit in a couple of acres and nobody cares. Rifle range in the backyard? Sure. Triple bay two story garage? Sure. Paperwork to build in a couple of months. All improvements that means more rates.

Basements they can't see. I know one one modeler out in the boonies who has a 30 x 12 foot trailer home parked at the side of the house. No interior except for the kitchen. And the layout.

Nigel

Barry Miltenburg
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Hi all

As the shed is just a shed, is under 2.5m high and does not cover 50% of the garden, planning is not required - we have something called Permitted Development which basically says if you can tick some simple boxes, do what you want as long as its at least 1m from a boundary wall.

Building Regs/code is a whole box of rules regarding the quality of the building - the shed counts as a building (as opposed to a mobile phone mast or a bridge which are structures).

Part A deals with structure, B is Fire safety, C is Site Prep and Contaniments etc etc - there is a full list on the interweb if you need some bedtime reading.

Satisfying the criteria in all relevant areas is not a problem and the local Inspector is a guy with a good coating of common sense apparently so I am not foreseeing an issue.  It just needs an hour or two of work to pull a dosier together showing that each of the appropriate Building Reg elements has been considered and satisfied.  Given that I have a Design Manual running to some 50 pages already covering Vision, Infrastructure, Baseboards, Storage tracks, Control, Operation, Electrics and much more, this is nothing more than another chapter and given how slowly the house purchase is moving, it gives something to do in the evenings!!

Barry

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Re "...and given how slowly the house purchase is moving," I thought it was a done deal when you said you'd bought a house back in December. What with Fees, Stamp Duty paid etc. etc.

Last edited on Tue Feb 4th, 2020 11:26 pm by Colin W

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Hi Barry,

I would haves good look at your to be neighbor's back yards and see what they already have. Garden sheds, garages, examples and precedents already established. Open expanses with lawns, flower beds and vegetable plots that require sunlight, a patio that gets sunlight, hmm.  A 2.5 meter high by 8 meters long structure can cast quite a shadow.  Does the location affect light through windows next door? The right to light law is still in place in the UK, if your neighbors have been there 20+ years they have it. Right to light is not considered in planning applications. There are expert consultants on this.

Nigel

Edit. I see your RHS neighbor already has a large tiled structure. Tall hedges, fences, etc. I would still check. Nothing like a piece of paper with an expert opinion, cheaper than being sued.

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Hi Colin

We actually agreed to buy the house on the 13th December and last Friday, the vendors solicitors sent my solicitor the first communication!!!!!! 

The house is the asset of a Family Trust which, we were told, would speed things up.  God help us had the thing moved slowly!!

I am trying not to get stressed as I am liable to say something to someone that I would regret.  I just keep taking deep breaths.

Nigel - I am of the school that things are done right by the right people so I have a solicitor, architect (although I am deeply suspicious about them generally), Building Inspector contact and a builder who is very much in tune with the Council requirements.  I have spoken to both immediate neighbours about my plans.  The neighbours behind are 60 yards away.  I am taking as much advice as I can get because (a) I don't know it all and do not want guess/get it wrong and (b) I do not want  to have to dismantle the shed/railway once the project starts.  Fortunately, Mrs M has previous when it comes to garden design and one of the main benefits of the house was the south facing garden.  She is positioning the shed to maximise her wants and still meet the technical requirements.  It'll all be right on the night as they say!

Barry

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Hi Barry,

I raise it because it happened to my next door neighbor when his next door neighbor had a large garage built. Which got torn down. I've never lived anywhere in the UK long enough to accumulate light years.

Our current property was bid on, money moved around, title searches done, contracts drawn up, notarized, and we moved in less than a month. Could have been sooner except we weren't ready. And that was an estate sale. Last but one hose we sold in the UK had a chain of 15 and had me telephoning the solicitors,  buyers and sellers to get things moving along. Even spoke to a Chief Constable who was supposed to be supplying a letter of reference for one of his bobbies to get a mortgage.

Nigel



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BCDR wrote:

Our current property was bid on, money moved around, title searches done, contracts drawn up, notarized, and we moved in less than a month.



Wow, if you could bottle that and sell it in the UK you would be rich man!!

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It's called "not a solicitor in site"

Nigel

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A useful if not entirely successful day today.

We drove the 80 miles or so to the showground where I hoped to be able to see a shed, similar to the one I am having but alas, they did not have such a beast on show (despite the keenness of their invite to show me their sheds :sad:).

However, it was useful to chat to the chief shed builder who was able to give me lots of info a trusses, frame sizes and other shed-geeky stuff that will come in useful when I talk to the Buildings Control Inspector.

I have just spent a bit of time at the local railway club where their test track is 28ft x 12ft to do some "visual" testing - I read somewhere that trains should occupy 1/3 of the visible length of a layout in order to give an aesthetic balance.  As someone who takes a keen interest in all design stuff (if nothing else to prove it either good or twaddle), I have been setting out my intended freight trains on the test track and Hey!, there is some merit in this one.  15 wagon freights look a bit lost whilst 35 wagons looks really long.  As I intend to run 20-28 wagon trains, I am now happy that this "1/3rd" theory is a good one.

Barry

Last edited on Sat Feb 8th, 2020 11:19 am by Barry Miltenburg

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That's interesting - 1/3rd of the length...………..

Does that mean your trains should be 1/3rd of the available length long or that only 1/3rd of the length should be populated by trains - regardless of individual train length ?


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Peter

The theory is that a train should, ideally, be 1/3rd of the length of the visible section so in my case, where the visible section through Yarslow station is about 30ft, trains should be no longer than about 10ft.

On the old Yarslow layout where the visible section was only about 14ft, 6-coach trains (6ft 6ins long) looked a bit big but the 4-coach locals (about 4ft 3 ins long) looked much better.  It was this that triggered my interest in the "visual testing". 

Incidentally, it also led me to create a number of videos of freight trains containing 18, 20, 22 and 24 wagons.  Watching them back persuaded me that 40 or 50 wagon trains were pointless on that layout - I could apply some compression and run a 22-24 wagon train that looked very long and produce the same visual effect as a 45-wagon train. 

That principle has been applied to the new layout.  A 10ft freight train comes in at about 30 wagons so this is my "optimum" length.  Loaded coal and ore trains are shorter (because they are heavier) at 24 wagons whilst the fitted (Class E) and empties (Class J) have 30 wagons.  The really small milk working (6 tanks + BG) is somehwat lost but this is a good thing - it shows up the light loadings of these types of trains.

Clearly this Rule should be applied with caution - a small shunting plank, where high density trackwork and a crowded feel are sought, would be ruined if every train was 2 wagons long (and the loco became a high proportion of the train length).

Barry

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Hi Barry,


Interesting comments about the % of scenic board occupied by a train. Out of interest I looked up the prototype I'm modeling. This had van and wagon limits depending on the engine, gradients and siding space available. For a 517 class this was 7 coal wagons,10 vans or 14 empties for up workings. Layout (long plank) is ~140', a maximum of 14 empties + the locomotive is ~40%, for 10 vans is ~29% for 7 wagons ~21%. Less for down workings as there was a gradient to deal with. A figure of 30% seems at first glance to be a useful average to consider when running trains. More by chance than any forward planning my sector table has a usable track length of 31.5". Using 3.5" for a wagon/van and allowing 5" for the 517 that will fit 5 wagons, a brake brake, and the locomotive. Just. Definitely a " Well I Never" moment occurred after I measured it. Lots of "Horlicks!" and the like. Good job my wife is out. Live and learn. Interesting lesson here perhaps regarding storage yards, traversers and sector plate sizes versus the length of trains on a layout.

My passenger train limit would be 3.5. feet - 2 carriages and one engine, or 1 carriage, 2 vans and one engine. Does that work with 2 carriages and 2 vans or 3 carriages where 1 is a short matchstick trailer? Probably....there is around 36" between the run around points. The sector plate really needs to have at least 3.75 feet of track. Aargh! Size matters! Salutary lesson here. Back to the drawing board. Definitely a day at the woodworking shop.

Came across this in the March 2020 Model Railroader. 60 x 30 feet. 1800 square feet/167 square meters. The lower level staging track length is around 15 feet, enough for 30 HO freight cars. ~9%.
The main line run is around 160 feet, 30% is around 48 feet or around 90 freight cars. Hmm. I think the 30% may have practical issues with medium and large sized layouts.

I was at a show Saturday where a 15 car passenger train was running on a very big layout. So that should go on a layout with a 50 feet scenic length. The layout was a roundy-roundy around 50 feet long and 15 feet wide - 130 feet of scenic board. Looked fine. 39 passenger cars would just look silly. As would the stations. That said, running 3-4 passenger cars on a mainline express looks out of place. 10 plus the locomotive is more like it. So applying the 30% suggestion that is around 37 feet of scenic board. Basically a 12 x 8 foot room.

Nigel









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Hi NIgel

I can't remember where I read the original comment and with everything in store, I am not sure that I could find it again!!

The 30% thing is not going to be an exact science but its strange how the layouts I like (visually) come somewhere close to this ratio.

I am not sure that I would take a saw to your layout just to fit this theory - if you are happy with what you have, that is surely the most important thing.

Barry

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Hi Barry, 

I rather like the sector layout, so no, it will stay. What I am contemplating is reworking one end to get a few more inches, say 3"-6") and or building a 4 x 1.25 foot cassette board and 4 cassettes as a replacement for when I run longer freight trains. Passenger running is not actually a problem, as the ruling factor is the run around space. Around 3 feet is enough for  two 4- and 6-wheel passenger carriages as they are only 5.5" long, as are the SIPHONS. A 59 foot passenger trailer is around 10" , so even there I can have 2 carriages (one short, one long) plus a SIPHON or 2.

What your comment brought home was that train length needs to correspond to storage track length. And that 30% is actually quite a good number for a small to medium layout.

Nigel

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Hi guys

Big update today as I have cleared out Hattons, Rails of Sheffield and TrackShack of their Code 75 pointwork stocks.  I have ordered 76 units (10 on a pre-order) to ensure that I can get everything I want.  There is loads of plain track about but Peco are, apparently, behind on production with the pointwork - especially the short radius stuff which I guess is popular.

There is no suggestion from Peco (according to Hattons) that the Code 75 production will stop, its just that they are behind, perhaps with a combination of Bullhead production and the reluctance of traffic coming out of China virus-free.

:cry: :cry:

I will have to add up my requirements for plain track, joiners, pins etc and get that stuff ordered to so that I can be ready to go when the time comes, whenever that is.................... [image of tumbleweed blowing through scene!!]

Barry

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76 units!

I bet you get a Xmas card from your bank :lol:

Cheers
Evan

Last edited on Fri Feb 14th, 2020 08:35 pm by Ssamm

Barry Miltenburg
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Evan

Now that I'm on a roll I ordered the remaining 10 points that Hattons didn't have from TrackShack along with a bundle of rail joiners, IRJs and track pins.  I still need about 12 boxes of track and 70 point motors but will tackle that when I know the exact quantites.

One of the advantages of planning a project like this from a long way out is the ability to build up a pile of pennies.  Its gives me a good kick to look at the shopping list and think "I've got the wherewithall to buy all that!!"

The overall budget for the project was about £15,000 from the point of moving to this new location - that is on top of the equipment I already have.  Because this layout is an continuation of previous layouts, I have already acquired 50-odd locomotives and about 450 pieces of rolling stock, a couple dozen points and about 70 yards of track.  There are also boxes of trees, buildings, lineside bits, etc etc.  It would have been a big mistake to have jumped straight into this size of project without having built up a stock of both bits and experience.  I strongly believe that I have made all the schoolboy errors during the previous 4 or 5 layouts!!

The shed will cost £7,000.

I also have a very clear plan of what I want.  By being focussed in this way, my collection of locomotives and rolling stock does not contain anything that doesn't fit into this layout.  Much as I like the ex-MR open cab 0-6-0T or the SDJR 0-4-4T I have resisted buying them.  Any old stuff that lingered from earlier projects has been sold and the pennies added to the pile. 

I know its ruthless and many on this forum like to buy what they like but if this layout is to come in on budget, I have to stay focussed.  I also have to keep a detailed Rolling Stock Register so that I know what I've got and a precise idea of train formations (especially passenger trains) so that I only buy the exact coaches and wagons I need.  I have been collecting to get the right number of fish vans, tanks, bolsters and other specialist wagons and just need to build up the numbers of general wagons to populate the various fitted and unfitted freights - I need another 250 wagons and 40-odd coaches.

A lot of what I buy comes from eBay - much derided by many but if you are careful about what you buy and ask questions in cases of uncertainty, there are many bargains to be had.  I do not have an issue with the better wagons from the earlier Bachmann, Hornby and Dapol catalogues and the Hornby Railroad range contains some nice pieces - especially wagons.  Most of my trains will run in fixed formations but where shunting is required, I only use new wagons with small "hook and bar" couplings.  The larger versions used previously by Hornby, Dapol etc are confined to the fixed formations.  Any one train will only contain wagons sharing the same coupling type.

I have just taken delivery (in the middle of typing this) of a couple of the Dapol undecorated vans - they are decent models and at £5 each, worth the effort.  The budget for the layout assumes wagons will cost £20 each and coaches will cost £45 each.  These figures are very rarely reached so I have a fair amount of leeway for the odd lapse (like a Heljan Clayton that I really don't need but like) - even my determined focus gets a bit blurred BUT it still fits into the overall scheme!!!

Barry

Last edited on Sat Feb 15th, 2020 07:44 am by Barry Miltenburg

Barry Miltenburg
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Perhaps I ought to put a bit of context into the conversation - we are about to spend £90,000 repairing and improving the new house to get exactly what we want in addition to the Railway budget.

Am I high-rolling, Ferrarri driving Wolf of Wall Street type? 

No (I drive a FIAT Panda!!).

We sold our 3-bed house in West London and have bought a 4-bed Victorian villa in Merseyside with enough change to carry out improvements, build an enormous railway AND live happily ever after - such is the North-South divide oft discussed.

Barry

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And me

Stephen

Last edited on Sat Feb 15th, 2020 08:16 am by GreenBR

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I'm in awe at your shopping list Barry - if I sold my Ferrari, I could probably match you.  As it is, like you, I'm very focussed and currently saving hard for the Ferrari ………………. :lol: :lol:

From your budgeted prices, you may well pick up some wagons but I fear, such is the latest hike in prices,  new coaches may well be beyond you ………………..

Who would have thought, a couple of years ago,  that having a budget of £45 for a coach would be pushing your luck !!!

It's all beginning to look very exciting - can't wait to see the size of your "work in progress" pile !!

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Hi Barry,

Nothing like a plan, lots of focus, a list and a register. Plus a bit of leeway for the odd piece that strikes your fancy. Doesn't matter what the budget is either. Apart from kits and "bits" 100% of what rolling stock I have is from shows or eebuygum. Surprisingly (well, not actually) a lot of GWR stock is coming up over here at shows and on the auction sites. Usually in excellent condition. 

Nigel


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Hi all

Luckily, there is still a lot to do that does not involve parting with cash.

Last night I produced a drawing of the baseboards with all of the cross-bracing positioned to avoid the point motors that will be mounted under the baseboards.  From this I was able to determine the number of plywood sheets that I am using for baseboard tops.  I have always used 9mm well braced with 2x1 inch (nominal) timber - unbraced areas should not exceed about 18 inches square.  I may use an open topped design for the branch but both Yarslow and Trinity Square will need solid tops.

I also spend quiet evenings trawling the internet for ideas - I found this one last night;



Its a painting, I know, but this could be the way that the tracks appear on-scene at Roe Halt - the factory could be where the houses stand and the halt would be beyond the signal box.  The garages on the left act as a view-blocker and the gasholders are replaced by warehousing either low-relief or on the backscene (TownScenes do something similar).  If I could capture even half of the atmosphere of Rob Rowlands work I shall be very pleased. (From the colours I'm guessing this is Welsh valleys or outskirts of town - my version would have a NER flavour).

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:
.....The overall budget for the project was about £15,000 from the point of moving to this new location - that is on top of the equipment I already have.  Because this layout is an continuation of previous layouts, I have already acquired 50-odd locomotives and about 450 pieces of rolling stock, a couple dozen points and about 70 yards of track. ....

The shed will cost £7,000.

Barry

Now that's some Budget, is the Shed on top of or part of the £15K? 

Colin


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Hi Colin

The shed is included in the budget total - not even I could spend £15000 on just track and stock!!!
Barry

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Just checking! Mind you £8,000 is not a bad effort given the current rolling stock/ track already accounted for!

Last edited on Sat Feb 15th, 2020 11:02 pm by Colin W

Barry Miltenburg
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Colin W wrote: Just checking! Mind you £8,000 is not a bad effort given the current rolling stock/ track already accounted for!
:mutley :mutley

In my defence Colin, the budget also includes insulation and lining for the shed, electrical installation of lighting and power, a uPVC door for the building, baseboards, carpet and a couple of stools.  Hopefully a kettle, small fridge and a few cans of something refreshing will find their way onto the shopping list!!

:cheers

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Head very excited

Wallet truly tired

All I need now is a house and the shed!!

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Good grief Barry - when are you opening your shop ?

That's quite a delivery - not surprised your wallet is in shock but how's your bank manager ?

I get excited when I buy a pack of track pins ...................................


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Hi Peter

If you promise not to tell anyone I'll let you into a little secret.

Until I retired at the age of 50 I was a Bank Manager......

Keep it to yourself!!

Barry

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Ah right Barry - now I understand.  So it's actually my money you're spending ……………………….. ;-) ;-) ;-)

My lips are sealed.  :thumbs

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Saw the picture and immediately thought the same as Peter, good grief  :shock:

Of course, the downside is all the wiring you going to have to do :cry:


Ed

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Apologies for the delay in replying - family issues.

A number of aspects of this project continue to appear, from the outside at least, to be somewhat daunting.  However, it might be worth me reminding folk that this layout is an "extension" of all the other layouts I have built.  Most of the experimental or pioneering work has been done and I am able to call on experience/mistakes/good ideas from a number of previous attempts.

The plan is simply a smaller plan exploded into a big space and the wiring is no different.  Yes, there is a lot of it but it will be very simple - I prefer simple as I am no electronics wizard - and if it breaks, I need to be able to understand it to fix it.

I am also blessed by having a number of friends, mostly non-railway, who have contributed.  My ex-BBC engineer has done sterling work investigating relays and we have spent many (happy) hours measuring resistances through various cable types over 20 metre runs.  On most layouts, you dont have point motors sited 40-odd feet away from the CDU and switch.  The power losses are an important factor!!

The final, and key, element in all this is that I am the sort of person who, generally, gets what he wants.  I don't mean that in a malicious or bullying way, I have a history of strong determination.  I am fortunate that my vision of this shed is shared by my wonderful wife and I am in a position to bring this dream into reality.  I am also fortunate that contributors to this forum have raised questions and issues about the layout that have made me think about aspects that I had previously missed.  Surely that is the greatest support of all.

Oh and no offence taken Peter but after nearly 30 years of working my backside off in the HQ of a Global Corporate bank, where I never saw customers, money or cheques and my rewards came from my own efforts rather than the misfortune of others, Bank Manager jokes wear a bit thin.  Fortunately, early in my banking career I had my skin grafted over with an extra layer from a rhinocerous :mutley :mutley :mutley

Last edited on Tue Mar 17th, 2020 12:27 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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A bit of fun

The layout will consume;

937 feet of track (according to Anyrail)
113 point units
120 point motors
35 buffer stops
845 metres of wire (best estimate)
50 packets of rail joiners
20 packets of track pins
several kilos of ballast (I dread to think actually)
about 120 trees
5 CDU's
6 controllers
133 switches of various types
57 trains
60 locomotives
124 coaches
706 wagons

The shed is 426 square feet and will accommodate
4 stations
3 storage yards
4 control panels
1 workbench
5 bar stools
1 mini fridge full of beer
5 mates
1 electric fuse board feeding
2 electric ring-mains and 1 lighting circuit
20 plug sockets
16 downlighters
4 oil-filled radiators

By the time it is finished I will be:
old
skint
a very happy man  :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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With 5 mates and only 5 bar stools, I take it you'll be standing behind the bar Barry ....................

What I can't get my head around is that, with all that track, rolling stock and locos, you can only run to a "mini" fridge !!  What's wrong with a full sized one ?

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Peter

You would not believe how much stuff has been allocated to "the shed" once we get into the house.  We have agreed not to use the loft for anything and therein lies the problem :cry:

Barry

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Hi Barry,

Only one workbench? Might be useful to have 2 - one for "clean" work (electronics, soldering, and the like), one for messy stuff (scenery, painting, plaster). One of the things I miss after downsizing was the loss of my two workbenches. One had the lathe, mill, drill press, sander and soldering station on, the other had the "messy stuff" including the spray booth (simple frame with a bathroom fan handing the exhaust through a clothes dryer flexi tube to the outside). .

Any chance you can squeeze in a small sink and running water?

Nigel

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Hi Nigel

No chance of the sink and running water but thank you for the idea of 2 benches for messy and clean work. 

I was considering having the bench next to Middle Junction and having duplicate controllers there for the main up and down lines so that I could work and play trains at the same time.  I decided to locate the bench next to Yarslow so I could do both and not require additional controllers. 

However, your point is well made and I am now considering using a couple of older control units next to the messy bench - I would not fancy getting dirty stuff all over a new pair of Gaugemaster Feedback units!!

Kind regards

Barry

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I have today loaded onto YouTube, the first 2 of a series of videos aimed at explaining how I went about designing the layout - going from initial thoughts through to detailed planning.  Its a process that everybody goes through when designing a new layout but the process gets seriously stretched out and detailed when you are trying to design something that covers 400 square feet.


Introduction




I will post Part 2 on the next post as it appears I cannot post 2 videos together

Barry







Last edited on Wed Mar 18th, 2020 01:44 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Part 2 : The Vision


Sol
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So far, you have kept me interested Barry.

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Thanks for your interest
I hope its not predatory but I was thinking that whilst I was "social distancing", others in the same position might want something to watch.

Barry

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Hi Barry.        Well done,nothing wrong with that. If only I had the space, the enthusiasm, and the where with all. But I will plod on.   Best wishes Kevin 

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Wow! I've only just seen that delivery back in Feb! How amazing is that! Good luck!

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Thanks Chris

It will be emotional!!!!

Barry

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I'm going to say this very quietly for fear of firing up my expectations but we have a provisional date to complete on the house purchase and have identified a week during which the shed-of-all-sheds could be delivered

:chicken :chicken :chicken :chicken

I am reluctant to crack open a beer in celebration just yet because there are a few hurdles yet to overcome but we are somewhat further forward than we were 2 months ago.  Even the local Building Control Officer seems happy with my proposals - especially when I blinded him with the science of Building Control Fire-Proofing requirements - I'm a bit of a closet nerdy ferrett when it comes to small print I'm afraid.

This has been a difficult time, not only for the reasons that everyone else has been suffering (and heaven knows many have been suffering much much worse than we!!) but because I have been dealing with the loss of my father and the implications of that.  My father and I were never close but he was still my father.  Luckily, his solicitor is also my solicitor so I have just sorted through the inevitable mounds of paperwork and left it to the experts to sort out Probate and do all the legals.  That's not easy and me being 200 miles away now has made it even harder - especially when I can't just jump on a train and go down there for a few days to deal with stuff.

In the meantime the railway has taken a back-seat and I have just been tinkering around with power supplies, relays and LEDS to prove that my hair-brained schemes for frog polarity and mimic board lighting might actually work.  So far so good but its still in the development stage.  Luckily, my local model railway club have been chatting using WhatsApp and "meeting" on a Friday evening through Zoom.  We have a number of 16/32mm garden boys so they have been posting "train of the day" - various weird and wonderful contraptions pootling round the garden hauling wagons full of beer and cheese rolls!!  A bit bonkers but somehow quite fitting at present.

Being house-bound and a bit of an eBay addict, I have added about 30 wagons to the fleet over the past few weeks although I confess they are all RTR.  I have promised myself to dive into the Peco/Parkside range when I see my modelling tools again - even, for no other reason, to prove to myself that I am a modeller not just a collector.  I allow myself a "train fund" allowance from my pension each month and over the last 6 months, the lack of modelling activity has resulted in a nice little pile of pennies I am looking forward to spending on shed insulation, lining plywood and baseboard tops.  Happy days!!

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Exciting news Barry, I hope it all goes as planned.  Reading the various threads here, I don't think there is anything that is truly RTR - there is always something to model and make unique, if only weathering.  And others will say there is a lot more.  But 30 new wagons leaves my fleet of 10 in shame!!
Hoping you stay well and safe

Michael

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Barry, that pile of pennies won't take long to vanish once you get into "decorating" your new shed.

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Just caught up Barry.... Gobsmacked by the size of your project... looking forward very much to following along with the build.

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"One small step at a time"

This has become my motto with this project.  We were supposed to complete the purchase of the house yesterday but unfortunately it now looks like another week will go by before we get the keys.  Not the end of the World as the builders are all busy for a couple of weeks anyway and whilst I don't own the house, I don't have to pay for the upkeep!

In the meantime, I have been to sunny Lancaster today to meet the guy who is building my shed.  This is Mk II of the construction process - the first company seems to have disappeared off the face of the known map.  The new builder, Mark (and his bonkers dog Daisy) have a massive workshop that was a barn on a working livestock farm.  Not so good on the smelly front on a warm day!

Mark has taken my brief and just whistled through the requirements, producing examples from his workshop of the outside finishing, roof shingles, internal bracing, roof trusses etc etc.  In short, he is man who looks and sounds like he knows what he is doing, surrounded by the fruits of his labours - shed panels waiting to be delivered.  It was good to talk about roof truss designs and bracing.  Sounds very nerdy but its actually important to me.  I can't afford to get this wrong.

As a result of our discussions and the passing of a bag of gold, delivery is now booked for the end of July come rain or shine.  Mrs M has given her two pennyworth on cladding colours and finishes and commissioned herself a garage whilst we were there - matching my shed of course!

Fireproofing sorted - Mark will get it done and certificated to satisfy Building Control.  Good man!

To celebrate, I have just put a truck-load of Code 75 track on pre-order at Hattons.

All I need now is the keys to the house, otherwise I will have to find somewhere to put a very large shed in a very small flat...................  :lol: :lol:

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All sounding very positive Barry - I hope you are going to keep us updated as it all develops.  Although shouldn't it be a shed load of track you have ordered?  ;-)
Regards

Michael


Last edited on Wed May 27th, 2020 04:29 pm by Headmaster

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:mutley :mutley :mutley

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The end of July sounds good Barry that gives you a few weeks to do the various jobs Mrs M will with no doubt will require doing immediately when moving into a new house.
Do you have to prepare a base for the new shed or have you suitable prepared area?
Have you got an electrician yet to power it for you unless you are doing it yourself. LED strip lights are the way to go ive got a lot and they are cheap to run.

Brian

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Hi Brian

I have always said that the new layout would start 9 months after the house purchase.  There is a lot to do and I do not want the layout to interfere with the job of getting the house right.  Most of the house work will be done by the building team but as a qualified electrician I will be chipping in to help the sparks we are employing.  I am getting a bit old to crawl around feeding cables so he can do it and I will assist him!

The groundsman in the building team is laying a steel-reinforced pad 100mm thick as recommended by the shed builder and Building Control.  This will include provision for electrics via the required Steel Wired Armoured (SWA) cable and with drainage planned as well - the rain water will be collected and distributed around the garden using a micro-bore system.

I think we have covered all of the bases but, as you can imagine, something will come up that we haven't thought of!!

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: ..... and with drainage planned as well - the rain water will be collected and distributed around the garden using a micro-bore system.....

Barry

Apologies for meandering OT but finding it hard to imagine the need in Liverpool. I thought immediately of the Beatles "Penny Lane"

And the banker never wears a mac
In the pouring rain, very strange......


which seems doubly relevant here.

The other odd thing to me after 20+ years of experience recycling water for my garden here is using micro-bore. Silting up of pipes and tanks is always an issue without comprehensive filtering, in UK same is true. I went the other way bypassing whole issue with 300L top lid water tubs (original use for shipping of Olives) and plunge filling of my watering cans. Very effective and good exercise (with due care). On a typical hot day I'll need about 12 cans or 100L and rarely run out during summer but that's only the vegetables. 

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Collecting rain water to irrigate gardens, other than in very large tanks, has always seemed rather difficult to justify for me.

When it rains, we don't need to water so our storage tanks fill up - say a few 300 to 400 litre water butts - or here, more likely 1000 litre plastic tanks.  After around a week of hot dry weather, other than the daily watering of flower boxes etc., we may need to water the garden proper. Our 300 to 400 litres of stored water will very quickly be exhausted and, should the dry weather continue, we're snookered so have to resort to "paid for" water.

My query is what does it cost to install the storage system against the cost of a few hundred litres of "paid for" water ?

Maybe, in UK, one doesn't get long, dry periods so the system is almost in perpetual motion.  Here in France, we have long periods of drought so, when it rains, we don't need it and when it doesn't our tanks are empty !

I also know what you mean about blocked pipes Colin.  Rain water is seldom "clean" and often carries an amazing quantity of solid matter - sand from the Sahara is a regular here for example.  Run that down a dirty roof and along dirty gutters and you usually end up with a decent looking broth ...............

In theory, it sounds ideal but, in practice, I'd think long and hard before parting with my cash Barry.

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Hi Peter

The collection of rainwater and what do with it was, originally, an idea we have given the amount of roof-space I was going to have.  It focused itself when the Building Control Officer insisted that the drainage was piped at least 2 metres away from the building.  We realised that we could avoid having to do that by collecting it.  Having done that, the obvious use was to pipe it around the garden.  Mrs M is in charge of that - I just agree!!

The comment about the amount of rain per annum is a good point.  Over last winter it seemed to rain every day!  Since the beginning of February, it has been quite dry.  Apparently, we get a good annual amount here so we are hoping that the winter allocation will get us through the summer.

Mrs M is going to establish a veg plot alongside my shed at the end of the garden so thats where my water collection is going to be used.

My post of April 24th suggesting a completion date of May 29th and showing the dancing chickens turned out to be a total turkey.  The sellers solicitor...........  Don't get me started!!

The seller (poor girl) has had to delay her own house move but is hoping to get things done in the next 2 weeks.  I am not holding my breath, just keeping my fingers crossed.

Barry

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Barry,

Not sure if you realise but it's going to be an awful lot of water to distribute if you don't run any to waste!

Your shed is ~8.5m *4.9m (41.7sq m) and every 10mm rainfall will offer up 417Litres. This is on top of the water already falling on your vege patch.  Given Liverpool's average annual rainfall is about 800mm this equates to 33,400L of water p.a. or 2,800L p month. Run that out over your vege patch space in winter and you'll have a swamp.

I reckon you'd be much better off with a decent sized tank and the overflow plumbed back to the rain water system.


https://en.climate-data.org/europe/united-kingdom/england/liverpool-107/

Last edited on Sun May 31st, 2020 06:43 pm by Colin W

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Indeed Colin.  With the best will in the world, you'll only be able to collect a fraction of what falls Barry and, according to your building controls guy, the extra will have to be piped 2 metres from the building.  Are there any drains at that distance - a house drain for example ?

As I said in my last post, laudible thought it is to think of conserving water for re-use, in UK it just doesn't work in practice.  There's too much coming down from the sky for free !!!

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Cheers guys
I have shown Mrs M your calculations and ordered a good pair of waders online!!!

At present, I’d be happy to get the keys. I am going to sit in the garden with a beer even if its chucking it down!!!!!

Barry

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Never mind the rain water Barry, I hope you have planned a source close by or even In the shed  ? That kettle wont fill itself you know !  And a tap close by your shed would save her indoors lugging heavy watering cans full to the veg patch if the rain water does give out  :thumbs

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Kettle?

I was thinking beer fridge :lol: :lol:

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Hi all

Apologies for being a bit absent in recent weeks but it has been full on.

After 28 weeks of surveys, solicitors, arguments, legal issues and downright frustration, today, I collected the keys to our new house.

I am now having a quick "get very drunk very quickly" break and tomorrow will start clearing the house and garden ahead of prep for the shed base and shed due at the end of July.

Once the shed is up, it will be used as a store for a few months but hopefully, towards the end of the year I can start thinking about interiors, insulation etc and baseboards.  In the meantime, I am stocking up on wagon kits and looking forward to being re-united with my modelling stuff!!

Barry

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Hi Barry,

You have arrived, well done to you and the bride and enjoy some well deserved liquid refreshment!

Now the real work begins, ha, but hopefully much less stress, as you are at last in control.

Best,

Bill


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Thanks Bill

I think my inner Control-Freak has taken a real bashing!

:cheers

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Congratulations, Barry!   :cheers  I shall raise a glass with you in honour of the event.....
Michael

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Hi all

Having spent a month working on the house, I had a meeting this morning with the Building Control Inspector ("Codes Inspector"? in the US).

I produced a dossier of some 25 pages detailing the design, construction, fire-proofing, drainage and security for the building and even included a trackplan so that she could see what the shed is going to be used for.

No immediate issues came up - just a few details like concrete pad reinforcement bar spec ( :shock:)  which I need to find out.  I didn't even know that this stuff had various specs!!!

If the Inspector is happy, she will be back next week to oversee the ground prep and concrete pour.  The shed delivery is still scheduled for month end.

Meanwhile, I must get back to the SDS drill - I am removing all of the plaster from all of the rooms.  So far we have removed about 2 tons of plaster and carried it out to the front garden 2 bucketloads at a time.  I have also taken down a ceiling and removed 2 walls.  Not surprisingly, Mrs M and I are looking somewhat slimmer than we were and we are sleeping like babies!!!

For those of a curious nature, there is a running vlog on my Yarslow YouTube channel.

Barry

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Hi Barry,

Sounds fun. I would be subject to the county codes department to make sure it met local and state requirements and the "Design Review Board", who are part of the local home owners association (HOA) and who dictate such small matters as conformity with the overall local area design, paint/stain color on the walls and doors, wood. concrete or brick finish. roof tiles or shingles, tree issues (big no-no if you try and get one removed).....and this is decided on at a public meeting where neighbors can come and have a moan. 25 pages - you're fortunate it's not 125.

That plaster must be a pain to get down given it's age. Plaster/lathe? Easier to rewire after removal of course, plus add any heating required.

Next move will hopefully to an area with no HOA, Told the agents we're looking for a garden workshop with electricity and A/C with attached living quarters. 2+ beds/2 baths.Along with lake access. Must be one somewhere.

Nigel

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Nigel

When we moved here we knew that the right house was out there - it was just a case of finding it.  Good luck in your own search.

Barry

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So the Building Inspector went away and came back with one or two issues.

The pad has to comply with Building Control which could involve digging out the garden to remove some 40 tons of soil and replacing it with 65 tons of hardcore and then a 100mm concrete pad (another 10 tons).  If that sounds mad, I agree so this is something we are disucssing shortly!!

She is also looking for a Structural Engineer's Report on the integrity of the structure.  Easily done but potentially a delay.

The interior might require fireproofing more so I may need to line it with 12.5mm fire-proof plasterboarding with a plaster coating over.  Not a problem and easily done if required.

At the end of this, the building will be certified as "Non Habitable" which suits me because that is exactly what it is.  Hopefully, once we agree to certifie it as such, the rules can be relaxed somewhat.

I will keep you posted.........

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You'd certainly need a 100mm concrete pad and that would have to sit on hard-core.   The hard-core would need to be "retained" - usually because its below normal ground level. 
 No mention of a DPM (damp proof membrane) ?  

Normal practice for concrete slabs in my day was topsoil dug out,  6 to 8 inches of hardcore (150 - 200 mm),  blind it off with sand, damp proof membrane (usually polythene sheeting), steel reinforcing mesh (weldmesh) set about 25mm above the polythene and all covered with a minimum of 100mm concrete.

Concrete slabs never came cheap !!

Good luck with it all Barry.  :thumbs

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Hi All

At a site meeting with the Buildngs Inspector this afternoon, they dropped the total bombshell that, notwithstanding my confirmation that I will comply with all of their requirements, they will, most likely, never be able to certify my shed as compliant.

Because the shed floor area exceeds 30m2, it is classed as a "building" and as such, Building Regulations consider that it will have a life expectancy of 60 years.  The fact that it is a wooden building does not change this view.

They have stated that, unless the timbers are all pressure impregnated using a suitable commerical process, the timber will not be able to retain its fire-proof ratings for the life of the building.

This (rather important) factoid has not been mentioned in previous meetings and emails.

This is, of course, mumbo-jumbo as most timber in your house will not retain its fire-rating for 60 years!

Nevertheless, shed building work is on hold and I am now trying to understand what the alternatives are.  Most likely, the idea of a wooden building will be dropped and I will be forced to concede to a metal or blockwork construction at a cost substantially higher than the proposed wooden building.  I will also, of course, have to cover the costs so far of the shed builder although this one is probably on me for authorising commencement of the work in the knowledge that I could satisfy the initial list of Building Regulation demands.

Lets keep this in perspective - there are people on here with much more difficult positions than mine - life threatening even.  This is a total pain in the R's but can be remedied by having a brick building.  Therefore, please understand that I will embark on a diffreent course to achieve my end goal.  Certain other people do not have that luxury and we should save our sincere good wishes and (for those who do) prayers for them.

Barry

Last edited on Thu Jul 30th, 2020 03:01 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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These guys in white coats really are a PITA !!!

You won't have had time yet to really consider the alternatives Barry but, apart from the "temporary relocatable building" loophole that used to exist and maybe still does (i.e. Portakabin type units), you might consider a bonded panel type of construction - plasticised metal outer skin, EPS insulation core and an inner skin almost of your choice.  Quick to erect and, as they're ready insulated and damp sealed, not a million miles away from a traditional timber construction price-wise.

I could never understand why the Authorities only ever knew how to say "No".  Yes, there needs to be regulation but when you see some of the monstrosities they allowed, one wonders if there was something untoward going on ............................

Whatever progress is made is usually in spite of them and not because of them !!

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Barry, why not play these jobsworths at their own game? I'm not sure how large your intended shed is, but why not consider reducing the size to the stated 30m2?  By my calculations, that would give you a shed over 30ft x 10ft, or of course could be made shorter and wider. Most modellers would give their right arm for a railway shed that large. Just an idea.



Terry

P.S.  I assume you are going to check the building regulations to ensure the jobsworths have not misinterpreted them?


Last edited on Fri Jul 31st, 2020 03:20 am by col.stephens

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Hah!

The men in suits only want 30m2 then I will give them 30m2! :twisted:  (If the thing does not exceed 30m2, they have absolutely no interest in it whatsoever - explain that if you can)

30m2 = 46,500 square inches.

It didn't take long for Excel to work out that I could have a variety of shed shapes giving me an area of 46,500 square inches (29.9994m2).  The most promising options appeared to be 25ft x 12ft 11in or 25ft 10in x 12ft 6 in (both 46,500 exactly).  Longer = better storage but I would have to sacrifice width/eat fewer choccy bars.

Hereafter comes a whole mealful of humble pie/red face jam and all other metaphors you can think of.......

I am, as you may have gathered, something of a meglomaniac.  I started out with a dream to build a layout in a shed some 24ft x 16ft which, as it turns out, would have run into trouble as that is over 55,000 square inches.  Nonetheless, believing that I could navigate my way through the mire that is Building Control, when the garden of the new house presented itself (its LARGE), I negotiated my way (actually bribed my way) into Mrs M's good books to achieve a 29ft x 17ft monster.  Bigger layout, more & longer trains, etc etc - the Meglomaniac in me was completely in control by this point and I was sounding off to all would listen that this would be something special.

CRASH

The Meglomaniac falls to Earth without a soft landing and the ego takes a serious battering.

Meanwhile, back in Sensible Town, an old version of a layout plan is unearthed and after a day's tweaking, Hey Presto! it fits into 25ft 10in x 12ft 6in.  Yes there are a few less trains and the ones I have are a little shorter but it still ticks all the boxes.  Just as importantly, those Code 75 points that I bought will all be used (the trackplan is the same, just smaller) and my expected rolling stock bill is a fraction of what it was when I was filling Mega storage sidings.

Sense United 1  Meglomaniac Tendencies City 0 (after a sending off by B.C.Inspector!)

All I have to do now is sweet talk the guy building the shed into modifying his plans to make sure I am not 1 inch over!!!!!

Barry

Last edited on Tue Aug 25th, 2020 10:27 am by Barry Miltenburg

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Hi BarryI have a 8.5m x 3.5m railway room in the garden myself - size dictated by the same planning rules that meant that I am over a year into building the railway whereas planning permission for the extension to the house that I also want to do is still tied up in providing a power trip of some numpty in planning who likes big words (why he had to say the plan contained over fenestration rather than had too many windows I don't know!)
Would recommend https://www.greenretreats.co.uk/ for your railway room if you go down the 30 square metres route.

Looking at your plan, I see that you have a through mainline station and a terminus. My layout has Newton Abbot and Dawlish on one level as shown below: 


Beneath Dawlish on the diagram is the main fiddleyard. Right at the bottom of that is a line which is rising up to a smaller fiddleyard on the right hand side representing Paignton / Goodrington sidings - this continues as single line behind Newton Abbot to join up with Kingswear which will be on the left as per diagram below:

Believe it or not I also fit a desk under the railway (between Aller Junction and Newton Abbot) which I am meant to be working from at the moment! This slides out when I am working or indeed when I am using the laptop to control the points remotely!

If this is of interest to anyone I can start a separate thread.

Peter

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Hi Peter

I am always keen to hear the experiences of other modellers with larger spaces and larger layouts, irresepctive of what we do with it - we all share the same issues and its good to share.

Hopefully I might get some progress today with my own corner of paradise........

Barry

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This afternoon, following a week of garden clearing, two pads were levelled, hardcored and poured.  The rear pad is for the shed and the front one is for the garage where the motorcycle will live along with the garden implementalia.

It will set over the next few days and at the end of next week, the shed will arrive.  More pics to follow.

The new plan (looking very much like a thin version of the old one but with a simpler Yarslow station) is below.  The storage sidings are thinner as well - 4 less trains than before but I had simply beefed up the storage anyway when more space was being contemplated - I am back to the list I had about 6 months ago!!

I need a better name for the layout in place of "Plan D"...........



After a long wait to acquire the house and sort out Building Control issues, this is a very sweet moment.

Barry

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I wonder what the building inspector thought of your neighbors sheds ?

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Hi Barry,

Good to hear your positive news. A suitably "pythonesque" solution given the circumstances, so we'll have to start calling you Barry "Two Sheds" as per the famous Opera composer Mr Arthur "Two Sheds" Jackson.

https://youtu.be/CA8xTGP_M8g

PS I see the authorities were concerned not to lower the tone of shed building standards in your manor!

PPS you could consider a variation or option where the lines nip out thru a suitable hole in the wall via a small removable viaduct to do a tour inside the other shed wall before returning thru a second hole. They look to be close enough to manage that and not offend the authorities! Mrs M might not even notice?

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Hi Guys

I must immediately apologise for any mis-spelled words but I have a large alcoholic beverage in my hand as a result of the picture below;



The uPVC door will be fitted in the morning and I then await the arrival of the electrician who will provide power via a SWA (steel wired armour) cable from the house.

In the meantime, CHEERS! :cheers

Last edited on Thu Aug 20th, 2020 02:18 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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:doublethumb

Well done Barry.......you must be very happy camper.

After all the problems that looks like a splendid shed......I am looking forward to seeing the interior.....not long before the trains are running.

Best wishes

John

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Wow - that appears to be some U-turn Barry.  I thought the planners had said a timber building was a no-no situation.............
Did you have to cross their palms with silver ........................or were they just being typically stupid ?

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Well done - happy modelling and cheers! Looking forward to seeing your railway develop.

Last edited on Thu Aug 20th, 2020 05:51 pm by

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PeterLoader wrote: Well done - happy modelling and cheers! Looking forward to seeing your railway develop.Likewise :). That's one fine shed Barry, enjoy your modelling,


Colin

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Phew! What a palaver....

Congratulations on your new shed, although I'm not jealous, no, no, not at all...[insert Pinocchio smiley]

D

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Wow, that's one mean and cool looking building and not that shed-like really. I'm thinking a replacement descriptive effort is needed to more fully capture the meaning and purpose of your new erection.

The colour and lack of fenestration possibly suggests the headquarters of a secret society or maybe a railway asylum, but however you think of it, it's brill!

Well done Barry, let the joy unfold.

Best,

Bill

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:Happy :Happy :Happy :Happy

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Petermac wrote: :Happy :Happy :Happy :Happy
I agree.....very impressive.

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Bill/Peter/John

Thanks for your encouragement although talk of my erection is something I am playing down around town Bill :oops: :oops:

As of Monday week, my furniture will occupy this space as it is withdrawn from storage saving me £100 per week.

Thereafter, as soon as rooms in the house are completed, the shed will empty and I can think about making a start.  If nothing else, this means getting access to my modelling toolbox again so I can make a few kits and bits that I have acquired during the past 12 months.  I probably wont get to my airbrush/compressor/paints nor the Dremel etc but at least it will something I can do.

My first job is to undertake a full survey by printing out the trackplan as big as I can and carefully marking the framing of the shed with key dimensions.  The end window (only small) does not interfere with the scenery [it is only 18 inches long in the centre of the right hand wall as you look at the plan] but it is slightly lower than I envisaged so with a baseboard height at 48 inches, I need to check that I can still get to it to open it.  First glance, it is going to be OK but I need to plot the baseboards out at this end of the shed to make sure.  The floor of vinyl faced 3/4 chipboard tongue & groove so I can draw all over it and then hide my scribbling under a carpet!

This survey will also check access widths, the bench site, the location of the electrical fuse board etc.

In the meantime, whilst the house is full of tradesmen (today we have 2 roofers, 1 glazier, 1 builder, 1 joiner and 2 central heating engineers) and we are avoiding it for social distancing reasons, I have turned my thougths to a timetable.  I know it sounds a bit premature but its a good way to determine whether the layout is workable and the right trains are in the storage yard!!

Its also raining and I'd rather stay indoors.

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Well done it looks like they have done a proper job there. The council cannot have any complaints with it either. Best wishes Kevin 

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You're a brave man Barry - all those trades working on one site at the same time - it will end in tears !!

Chippy :  "Who left this b####y wire hanging here" ?

You:       " I suggest you move it if you can't get where you need to be"

Chippy :  "I'm a b####y carpenter, not a b####y electrician - I never touch electrics"

You:        "OK, I'll move it"

Chippy :  "Do you have a Union Card ? "



 

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A great well built shed Barry easy to extend when or the officials have dispersed LOL

If you have not thought about it yet i would recommend plenty of LED battens in the shed to maximise you lighting.

I presume you have also considered some form of heating for your own comfort and also not letting temperature drop to much to start damaging stock and layout. Bar heaters are well worth looking at.


Brian

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Hi Brian

The problem, strangely enough, is more of cooling rather than heating.

Even when its 13-15 degrees outside, its a good 15-20 degrees warmer inside so I have been talking to the roofer about getting some ventilation in the soffits (the bit that is under the overhang of the roof at the sides).  Its amazing what decent tradesmen know about their trade - our roofer started quoting all sorts of facts about airflow and stuff!!

The shed has an internal membrane that keeps in the warmth yet allows the timber to breathe.  If I insulate, I need to make sure I retain the air gap between the insulation and the membrane for it work properly.  That will also help reduce the heat transfer from the outside surface into the building below.  Black looks good but its not brilliant at reflecting heat of course.  Having said all that, I opened the small rear window and had the door ajar for about 10 minutes today and the internal heat simply flowed out - helped by the fact that the shed does not have a vast roof space trapping heat internally - as you can see from the picture, its quite flat.

Its all trial and error of course and I have the advantage that I will probably not start to build until January so I can see how it performs during the autumn/winter.  The worst of the cold is January so if I can get it right in the run-up through Xmas, I will be happy.

Kevin - great to hear from you my friend!  How's things?  The Council will certainly not be interested in my shed as I have made very sure that it ticks all the boxes!!

Barry

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In my garden room I have an aircon unit installed. It is very quiet and comes with a remote + app. Cost about £1,000  as part of the deal from Green Retreat who supplied my room.Well worth the extra as it does heating and cooling. You can also set a timer so if you are worried about excess temperatures when you are not there that can be handled as well
Peter

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi Brian

The problem, strangely enough, is more of cooling rather than heating. Even when its 13-15 degrees outside, its a good 15-20 degrees warmer inside ......

Hi Barry,

That's not surprising. Lots of radiant summer heat at present which the black walls absorb very efficiently and the "black body" radiation from the heated walls currently warms your shed innards unless there is an aluminium reflective film layer in the wall interior. An air gap does nothing to stop this effect, that's there to reduce convective heat transfer but has no little/ impact on radiant heat (infra red radiation).

The cricketer's kit illustrates the black body issue, playing in all black would be intolerable in direct summer sunlight even at modest UK temperatures. Hence "whites" are the norm, reflecting back much of the incident infra red radiation and keeping the players cooler.

It'll be a different story in winter depending on how much the sun warms the shed exterior. Then the air gap comes into play hopefully keeping heat that's inside where you want it.   

It would be helpful to monitor temperature and humidity through your colder months to understand how these variables move around. Critical before any woodwork for layout support is installed. There is one tale of woe over in that "other place" where leaping in to the build in a poorly designed shed led to all manner of warping and other moisture management issues.







 

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Hi Barry,

Soffit ventilation. Having lived in houses subject to -30° to +40° for 30 years, it's important to get it right. No good having soffit vents in the eaves unless the roof space is sealed  and insulated from the room and there are exhaust vents at ridge level. Venting into the room will just bring lots of dust in. The ceiling will need moisture proofing  (plastic membrane) and insulating. Not sure you have space for that. 
I would think that insulating between the timbers up to the joists and the ceiling along with filtered air in at the bottom and air out at the top of the room would be better. if rock wool insulation is used it can be soffit ventilated. Blown is problematic and foam is a no. Use a thermostat controlled fan in the room to vent out. Adding a small single room heat pump would deal adequately with the usual extremes of UK weather.

Nigel


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Thanks Nigel - its always good to learn from someone who has been there.

Yonks ago, Cyril Freezer, in a book about "A Home For Your Layout" I think it was, sketched the idea of creating an air duct for a loft layout with soffit vents and a fan at the top.  The fan sucked air out of the loft and down through the vent and out of the soffit.  The air duct was made by boxing in 2 roof supports/rafters.

I could use this same idea in the shed using simple bathroom fans - one at each end - and some soffit vents.  I will talk to my roofer about this to see if he thinks this might be enough.  I know from my electrician training that fans have a rating for litres of air per minute being shifted so it wouldn't be hard to determine the rate of air exchange inside the shed.  I am not sure about temperature controlled switchgear but its worth a look.

Edit - a quick look around the internet suggests that I can get a temperature control switch (designed for switchgear cabinets etc) to turn on/off a couple of fans for about £15.  I will chat to my electrician friends about the viability of this.

Barry

Last edited on Thu Aug 27th, 2020 11:10 am by Barry Miltenburg

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I used to have the bathroom type fans on a thermostat Barry in the sheds of my old layout they certainly made the difference of being able to work in the shed or not in warm weather and is pretty cheap to install.


Brian

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Hi Brian

Did you vent your air straight through the walls of your shed or via a trunking system?

Barry

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Hi Barry,

I think that if I was making what is a significant investment in a detached model room I would go for a single or dual zone, no draft, ductless heat pump a/c. A unit good for a 25 x 10 foot room is around $600-$700 plus installation over here. One system instead of a heater and a fan.

Nigel

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi Brian

Did you vent your air straight through the walls of your shed or via a trunking system?

Barry
Hi Barry mine went straight through the walls most of them have a Louvre system that shuts off when the fan is not working it is possible to run a trunk off the inside to a high spot in the roof to drag the hottest air out my shed had a flat roof so i just set the ones i had at the top of the walls.

Brian

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Thanks Brian

I can try this out using a spare fan and some trunking to see what difference it makes.  Even in late September here it is quite warm and the shed needs some ventilation.  If I can find my thermometer (in a box somewhere) I will be able to be a bit scientific about it!!

Barry

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I don't know how I missed these updates, but wow! what a super space and I will certainly enjoy following the development of what I am sure will be a super model railway - once the whole space is your own!
Michael

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My solution to the heat problem, 
I built the small tower onto the model railway shed,  there is at present a switch controlled fan pulling air from the curved area on the right,  which is to remove the fumes from SWMBOs oil paints.  Her art studio is that end with the railway running around the curve. There is a large opening door beneath the tower to let the heat out,  eventually there will be temperature controlled fans taking the heat out from the area between the roof and ceiling.
Ignore the rest of the tip,   I'm rebuilding the area for entertainment, behind the blue and white, is the uncompleted BBQ area, there will be a matching area on the right of the door that just might have something running on rails as an outside extension. 
To the left of shot is the mobile home in which elderly relatives stay when visiting, as the house stairs are somewhat steep..

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HI Q

Thats a sweet pavillion you have there - looks very English!!

Unfortunately, the wonderful people at Planning Control deem that 8ft 2 1/2 inches (2.5 metres in French) is high enough for a garden building without the dreaded "Planning Permisison" so a central tower, however beautiful yours looks, would be prohibited.

At present, with the house renovation to complete, the shed is only being used as a store.  Days spent grovelling around under the floor of the house clearing out 1890 builder's rubble and spraying dry rot will soon be over I hope.  We have already started applying paint to the bedrooms and the builder is replacing structural timber with steels all over the place downstairs.  In 2 weeks time, the plans are to have the re-roofing complete, the steelwork done, all rooms plasterboarded (if not plastered) and the remiedial brickwork sorted.  It's downhill thereafter (he says confidently!!).

In the meantime, I have planned (and started) posting short videos on my Yarslow YouTube channel discussing the plan for the layout, the concept of Cab Control (for the dinosaur generation of DC users), prototypical stuff like BR wagon colours and markings and other layout stuff like "using relays in point operation", an update on my "Stopping Freight" operations etc.  In the absence of any modelling activity, this is as good as it gets and makes a useful distraction from the house where we are working 7 days a week to get back to our deadline of "move in by Xmas".

Unfortunately, during the re-roofing, I have ventured into the loft space to discuss insulation and discovered 4 massive rooms ripe for conversion - not for railway use as the roof space has structural walls running front-back and side-side - but ideal for my collection of model soldiers, slot cars and table football.

Mrs M was not impressed at my suggestion of making 4 more rooms.............

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Just a quick update.  The house renovation has reached the stage where we are finishing little jobs this week and then next week will get down to building the extension starting with the footings.  The project is about 6 weeks behind - mainly as a result of the weather (which has been rubbish) and 2 of the building team having to take time out with Covid-19 symptoms.  We do not have an infectious site and have strived since the start not to have more than 1 or 2 people working in the same space at the same time.  That has resulted in us having to stay away for some periods.

No modelling has been achieved but I have accumulated miles of 0.7mm/16 wire, tag strip, shrink wrap, solder and all sorts of other goodies!!

I am grateful for you guys for continuing to post your layouts, models and updates.  That keeps my spirits up during a time when I have had some highs and lows.

Thank you

Barry

Last edited on Sun Nov 1st, 2020 06:08 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Big set back today.  The weather has been poor lately and this has meant that the footings were only poured today.  The overall extension project will be 12-15 weeks which means, after fit-out, we will not be into the house until February.

That is disappointing and for me means that I cannot get into the shed until February whan I was hoping it was going to be the New Year.  The whole renovation is 7-8 weeks behind schedule.

The good news (clutching at straws) is that I could possibly get out there to do some insulating and wiring over the Xmas period providing the weather is reasonable (I need to get some stuff out into the garden in order to make room).

To maintain my mental health, I have opened the boxes containing my old Railway Modeller magazines and have started reading old back numbers.  Its not modelling but it keeps the juices flowing!

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Thats tough Barry......I get the sense of just how frustrating the further delay must be. Frankly I am very impressed with how stoic you have been throughout this exercise.
I suppose to fill in the time, rather than re-read the Modeller, you could always bone up on DCC:lol:

Though  perhaps thats a bridge too far?:pedal

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John I fear that DCC gets further away - I have just ordered a couple of J26's and a couple of J27's on pre-order from Hattons to add to the fleet.  Even with the older engines being retired off, the fleet is still 60+ and I really don't have the inclination to convert.

In case you missed it, I am a bit of a meglomaniac and would go DCC Sound if I go at all.  The cost of that would be daft so I rein it in and feel content with a background soundtrack of "steam noises" from a hi-fi.  Its something I did on the old layout and although its not all co-ordinated etc, it gives me an atmosphere.

My biggest concern with the setback is the mental repurcussions.  Its bad enough being stuck indoors and I'm glad that we have the house renovation to get stuck into but that has slowed down as the days get shorter and there is becoming less for us to do.  I cannot do bricklaying and plastering so once the decoration and electrical work is done, I'm just tinkering around.  I'm happy to do that as I can't get in the shed because its our furniture depository.  If I can get some stuff out, I can start fitting the Kingspan insulation and perhaps start the wiring for the lighting etc but part of me thinks that making a start will only make the actual modelling seem further away.

I agree that re-reading old mags is not brilliant but for now, it's more interesting than Christmas telly and has inspired me to do a few more videos for my YouTube channel.  I've even volunteered to edit a Xmas Virtual Exhibition for my local MRC!

And, of course, its good to stay in touch with the YMRC members - inspiration from all angles :doublethumb

Barry

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No worries Barney.......I was only teasing about DCC.....although I did have a hand in convincing Bill (Longchap) to see the light.:lol:
I agree 60 locos will take a lot of time and money to convert. I guess I had about 30 in 2007 when we moved house and I started with DCC and Granby III . That took me three or four years...a lot were split chassis and hardwired. 13 years on there are probably only three running regularly.

Thanks for the reminder about your videos....been on my list for a while. Good luck with your virtual  Exhibition at the club

Best wishes

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John Dew wrote:


......although I did have a hand in convincing Bill (Longchap) to see the light.:lol:


To say nothing of me !   I'm still trying to seek my revenge and get you into sound but currently, not having much success !   :cool wink

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:mutley:mutley
I am seriously tempted Peter:shock: I was very impressed with your latest soundtrack.  More to the point I have new hearing aids which are a revelation.....I might even be able to hear a chufff with them.:lol:

I have a similar dilemma to Barry.....too many locos for it to be realistic. However I find I spend an awful lot of time running just the branch where there are only about 6 locos........so it could work there.

I may start a thread.......sorry Barry you can have yours back now!:nice

Last edited on Tue Nov 10th, 2020 03:54 pm by John Dew

Barry Miltenburg
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John

Your hearing aids may be working perfectly but you need new glasses

I'm Barry, not Barney :mutley :mutley :mutley

I've been called worse!!!!!!

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:mutley:mutley:mutley    Actually have new glasses as well! .........my apologies:oops:

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John Dew wrote:....................................................   Actually have new glasses as well! .........

Wow John - new peepers and new headphones - the bionic man !!

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:mutley :mutley 

No expense spared when it comes to modelling essentials!








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In a strange twist today, the groundswork crew laid all our new drainage and then proceeded to lay the heavy plastic conduits through which my SWA (steel-wire-armoured) cables will run to provide power to the shed.  A 13 amp supply and a CAT-5 cable for a wireless router will be put in shortly.
:doublethumb

If only I had the time and ability to get out there and do something with them!!!!!

Barry

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Hello,
I dont know weather you are aware but there is a Cat-6
now, just a thought
Regards

Barry Miltenburg
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Hi fellow cat-avatar!!

It might be CAT-6.  To be honest, I know less about CAT cable than I do about Theoretical Particle Physics.

(Much like DCC really :???:)

Luckily, I know a man who knows how it all works and when he connects it up, I get wi-fi in the shed.  It could just be hamsters on wheels for all I know :lol: :lol: :lol:

Barry Miltenburg
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Crikey, I have just realised that it was November when I last posted here.  Days and weeks just melt together as we tend to be at the house every day so I'm not surprised.

The moving-in date is now early March 2021.  That's about 10 weeks later than we first thought when we started in June.  Given the current strange times, delays in supplies, weather and some lumpy decisions on job scheduling, I am neither surprised nor disappointed.  I think we have done well to get this far!  The initial work-plan for the house certainly did not include re-plastering every room and most of the ceilings.  Two ceilings came down care of Yours Truly. 

Everything in the house - one exterior wall, roof, 5 internal doors, all plaster, 2 ceilings, all electrical cable and fittings (and consumer unit), all gas pipe and fittings, 2 gas fires, all water pipes (including the main supply pipework) hot and cold, the central heating system, all insulation, all airbricks and all external doors have been replaced.  The origianl quote of £15-20K turned into a six-figure bill.

Fortunately, the 27ft x 12ft 6in shed didn't get lost!!

I am planning to get into the shed about April or May and have set a VERY soft target of getting a train running by xmas 2021.  It may not go all the way round but I expect to see something running.

In the meantime, I am still taking advantage of sales and cheap deals - retail and on-line shops are desparate for sales and the prices are pretty keen.  Even the local timber supplier is keen to do me deals so I have stocked up on shed insulation and softwood lengths.  I have made a conscious decision not to buy anything on eBay from China in an effort to support UK businesses so switches, wire and electronics have been ordered from UK suppliers only.  I know that some of the stuff is made in China but at least a UK trader has got some benefit from the transaction.

The planning and preparation stage continues - mostly as an excercise to maintain sanity in this tiny World we are forced to live in.  Even going for a walk along the seafront is a rare event - its so damned cold!!!

Barry

Last edited on Mon Jan 18th, 2021 03:02 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Hi Barry.  I would  have said “J C “ if I found myself in that position when I was looking for a suitable house a few years ago. But the sellers idea of what their properties were worth, didn’t match mine. Best wishes Kevin 

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This thread has taken on something of a Home DIY look but it is all related - I assure you!

The end of next week will see the final acts of the building team inside the house as the kitchen and utility room get plastered, the heating engineer starts work and the electricians finish the 2nd fix and new Consumer Unit installation.  That all gets us light, power and heat.  For the first time since June 2020, the toilets will flush!!  Long list of bits and pieces to do but every day the list gets shorter.

We are planning to move in during the week of March 15th - but I have set dates before.........

Rather helpfully (not), I have been called for Jury Service in the middle of February so I will lose 2 weeks (assuming that I don't get something that lasts longer!).

By the end of March I anticipate having the furniture moved out of the shed.  A bit of organisation in the garage will allow all the tools to be relocated giving me the space and the time to do the electrics and insulation.  I will be reviewing all the helpful advice on heating and ventilation that I got from you guys.

I have sourced a series of LED Daylight downlights and will run 2 ring mains around the shed.  One will be for heaters/fans, the fridge etc and will be live at all times.  The other, using red socket faces, will be switched off after each visit.  This will be for bench lights, soldering irons, controllers, bench and auxilliary supplies etc and will ensure that all this equipment will be OFF when I leave the building.

Just before Xmas, the guy I was talking to about alarms called in to say he had a few spare days and could do my installation "for cash" at a good rate.  Although the system has been somewhat in the way during the renovation, it was worth doing and as part of the package, I got a motion detector in the shed linked to the main panel and the alarm box outside the house.  Similarly, I got a Cat-6 cable installed to give me a wifi booster serving the shed and garden.

The local building supplies company have got to know us like old friends and are now given decent discounts on supplies as a result of the amount we have spent with them.  That makes the PSE timber and 9mm ply boards a bit cheaper.  They are also happy to deliver the lining ply, baseboard tops and all the linear timber.

The carpet guy we are using is searching his warehouse and chatting up his contacts to get me a decent deal on carpets - probably carpet tiles which allow for both comfort AND the ability to screw through them for securing legs etc.

All this "infrastructure" stuff is vital to get the right environment.  I plan to do all this once so a lot of thought and planning has gone into it.  I am lucky to have decent tradesmen making comments and suggestions and have learned that my initial ideas are not always the best thing to do!!

Barry

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Hi Barry.  Good luck with all your work. It would do me in, the week after they fitted the carpet in the living room, the shop that did the work burned down, which meant that we didn’t get the stairs done. Best wishes Kevin 

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And so it begins....

Visually not very exciting so no pictures but today, I started work on the new Yarslow layout. I have been waiting 5 years to say that!!

My Jury Service continues into its 4th week but I am hopiong to be finished mid-week.  At least I hope so because I've got my first jab on Friday.  Last week the electrician put the Fuse box in my shed and I am expecting him to make it live in the next few days.  This has involved having a major sort out of everything that is in the shed and so I took the opportunity today to begin installing the insulation.

I am using 1 inch (25mm in French) Kingspan which is foil lined on both sides.  This will keep the heat in, the cold out and the harmful rays away (so says the sales blurb!)  Inserted between the internal battens of the shed, I am leaving a 1 inch air gap between the insulation and the breathable membrane as instructed.  I've only done about 10 panels and have another 5 dozen to go followed by the ceiling panels but at least its a start. 

A few curtain poles and a bit of painting should see the house finished and thoughts can then turn to the shed proper.  In the interim I am starting to sort out boxes - have found my modelling tool boxes  - and clearing space.  I have also managed to squeeze in another birthday which yielded a new DeWalt drill to replace my knackered old ones and a hot-air blower for heat-shrink.  (Essential and exciting - I must be getting old!). 

Move-in date for the house is scheduled for 27th March to coincide with the first steps of Lockdown easing.

What could possibly go wrong............

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Bonjour and belated Happy Birthday, honorary scouser Barry,
 
Good choice of drill, as I too treated myself to a new all singing and dancing Dewalt combi last year and I am very impressed with the increased ease it handles itself over the old unit and that the more sensitive progressive trigger even handles tiny drills with assurance and delicacy when working with resin kits.
 
So good to hear you have again started on Yarslow and obviously delighted to be fitting 25.4mm thick insulation boards. Long may the fun continue.
 
Enjoy the new build process and I’ll be following along with interest with everyone else here.
 
Best,
 
Bill

Last edited on Sun Mar 7th, 2021 03:58 pm by Longchap

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:Happy :Happy :Happy  :doublethumb :doublethumb :doublethumb :cheers :cheers :cheers
                                          :chicken :chicken :chicken :chicken :chicken :chicken :chicken

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Hi Matt.   Could you please advise me on these “Hieroglyphics “ messages , then I could keep track of what is going on.. as I know that it is not my thread but I would like to keep my hand in. Best wishes Kevin

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Longchap wrote:......
Good choice of drill, as I too treated myself to a new all singing and dancing Dewalt combi last year and I am very impressed with the increased ease it handles itself over the old unit and that the more sensitive progressive trigger even handles tiny drills with assurance and delicacy when working with resin kits.....

 
Bill

Hi Bill,

I'm sure it's a fine drill you have but I'm interested in your comment on fine bits and resin kits. I find most use from 0.3mm to 1.5mm bits on OO Kits and aside from very top of that range I'd find it impossible to use a power drill. My little hand Pin Vice bought years ago in a rare moment of useful foresight has seem much service and I recently added in a fine set of micro drill bits to my modest collection.

Surely the drill weight with even smallest battery becomes an issue? Puzzled in Melbourne.

Colin

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I too am surprised you can use a hand drill on anything this small Bill ...... :shock:
Amongst my drill arsenal, I have a Dremel which is normally mounted on a stand.  Even on the slowest speed, it's far too fast for drilling plastics.  I always use a pin vice for that job - slow but it does the job.

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Passed Driver wrote: Hi Matt.   Could you please advise me on these “Hieroglyphics “ messages , then I could keep track of what is going on.. as I know that it is not my thread but I would like to keep my hand in. Best wishes Kevin

Its a simple celebration Kevin, After five long years of planning, and after a marathon to get building/ renovation works complete, Barry will soon be ' Taking possession' and has finally FINNALLY been able to make a start on his Layout, well the Layout SHED anyway, I'm sure the actual Layout build itself will follow smartly along !

Thats once the Clark of works (SWMBO) Releases him from urgent tasks on HER list  :pedal

Cheers

Matt

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Woo, good luck on the build!

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Hi Bill - just a few thoughts for what they're worth as I 'went large' a few years ago.
Firstly, I would say carpet in the railway room is a definite 'no no'.  Carpets create dust.  You will drop small components that disappear from the face of the Earth on a pale, tiled floor.  On carpet you'll have no chance. No matter how careful, you will spill liquids - tea/coffee/glue/paint/solder - a nuisance on tiles, serious on carpet.  Creepy crawlies like under carpet!  One of my better decisions was to have the railway room tiled (there's a pic at the beginning of my thread).  I would say tiles or tough linoleum would be the way to go.  You will also find you spend a lot of your time cleaning so the easier the floor is to clean the better.

Baseboard height.  I arbitrarily decided on 1m.  It seemed a nice height for working on when standing & was eye level for viewing when sitting down.  Big mistake.  I have a 'duck under' as I had nowhere to put a lifting flap & I find it increasingly difficult (especially with the baseboard being 1m wide) to crawl under (p.s. whatever you need at any given time will always be the other side - this rule is immutable).  In hindsight I would have made the boards higher then used duck boards for when working on the layout.

Try & do as much of your wiring as possible before fixing down your boards.  Although somebody else did the bulk of my wiring for me, I've spent many hours with crooked neck & sprained back working on wiring.  Again, 1m is too low as you can't sit up straight underneath.  I had to acquire a hard hat for working under as my head started to look like a Corona virus.

Never under estimate how much work you'll have to do.  I'm 10 years in (admittedly with a 4 year hiatus) & only just showing any progress.  You will need to do a lot of ballasting!

Cats.  I too am a cat lover - we have 2 rescue cats.  They have a penchant for chewing scenic work, especially trees, & of course dangly wires are game on.  It's best not to run trains when a cat is in the room. A 5 Kg cat suddenly appearing out of nowhere & landing on your latest DCC sound fitted loco & train is not recommended.  They are learning by the ensuing howls & screams that being on the baseboards is not a good idea but their fascination for small moving objects is obvious.

It's easy to get disillusioned & disheartened with a large project when you've done a lot of work with little to show for it (& your wife continually asking "any trains running yet?").  I've just made 40 trees & used most of them on one small corner of the layout.  However, like you I had 50 years of planning & collecting so when the opportunity presented itself I had to take it.  You will see that the plan for Ottersford was chosen in 1979 but was for 'N' gauge!

I wish you the best of luck & will be following your progress with interest.  BTW where have you settled in Liverpool?

Keep well

Mal

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Kaiser wrote: I would say carpet in the railway room is a definite 'no no'.  Carpets create dust.  You will drop small components that disappear from the face of the Earth on a pale, tiled floor.  On carpet you'll have no chance. 


I like my carpet in the garage, it feels warmer in the winter with it there. I have on a few occasions been left rummaging around for the smallest item which while picking up I said to myself "Do not drop this"!

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Ah, you dismiss modern cordless drill technology too quickly chaps, as it’s this remarkable progress since my last purchase, which enables the new generation drills to accomplish so much more.
 
My choice whether to use a pin vice or my new Dewalt to create door and window openings though 12mm thick resin walls was a no brainer, as the drilling process for all the work I needed on the station building with a pin vice would have taken over an hour and given me blisters, but was completed in just 5 minutes with the right tool for the job.  
 
Just like in model railway locos, coreless motors make the drill smoother in operation and combined with super responsive and progressive triggers, delivers precise slow speed control, while the balance of the drill in the hand, even more so when I use the supplemental wafer thin 2Ah battery, makes safe precision work with small scale workpieces easily achievable.
 
I use small drills all having a constant larger shank size to fit larger chucks for perfect centring and happily drill with 1mm and above in the cordless and used a 2mm drill on the station for perforating, followed by the largest bit which would safely fit the opening. Job done 😊
 
See post 276 on http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=15841&forum_id=21&page=14
 
Best,
 
Bill

Last edited on Mon Mar 8th, 2021 10:44 am by Longchap

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Hi Mal

This layout will have a baseboard height set at 48 inches to the top surface.  This provides me with a suitable duck-under.  I am not quite in my bath-chair just yet but my previous layout had a baseboard height of about 3ft 6 inches and it was ever so slightly low.

I am well aware of the amount of work involved and, luckily, have a wife who is fully on board with the project.  I don't do "lads weekends", nights in the pub, betting shops or similar.  Although we have bought a fair-sized house (and spent a few quid on it), it does not need to look like the centre-spread of House and Home and we are happy camping or having holidays every few years rather than every few months.

Lockdown and delays with the house have allowed me to collect a large pile of useful bits like wire, switches, heat-shrink, track, pointwork, polystyrene, track pins, rail joiners, insulation, screws etc etc etc.  I had an original idea of being able to build the layout from a "kit of parts" but that has proved to be a bit niaive!!

My biggest asset is a healthy dollop of bloody-minded obstinance :lol: :lol:

btw - I too have a Dremel 4000 with a flexible drive which I find essential for small driling jobs when the archimedes hand-drill proves under-powered.

You will appreciate that, for security reasons, I am keeping the exact location of the railway to myself but we have settled within sight of the sea not a million miles from from a rather famous golf links.

Thanks for your interest and support.  Stay safe

Barry

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Sounds like you're in the posh scousers resort of Formby (where my Mum lived!).  In sight of the sea - mmm Birkdale but not really Liverpool!

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: .....................................................

You will appreciate that, for security reasons, I am keeping the exact location of the railway to myself but we have settled within sight of the sea not a million miles from from a rather famous golf links.


..............................................................



Ah ha, St Andrews - and dare was me tinking you were slightly closer to the Mersey......... (said with Irish accent .......) :mutley :mutley :mutley

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Petermac wrote: Barry Miltenburg wrote: .....................................................

You will appreciate that, for security reasons, I am keeping the exact location of the railway to myself but we have settled within sight of the sea not a million miles from from a rather famous golf links.


..............................................................



Ah ha, St Andrews - and dare was me tinking you were slightly closer to the Mersey......... (said with Irish accent .......) :mutley :mutley :mutley

That’s Hillside then? I think it’s great that there are people on this forum are from
Southport. I’m from Ainsdale but my family are in Birkdale and Hillside! 

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We lived in Ainsdale in the late 70s early 80s before moving to Southport.  Our house backed on to the beach - we could see the sea but it was a 2 mile walk to get there!  I'm now thinking Blundellsands - posh end of Crosby but still Liverpool.  Nice houses with views of the sea.  Spookily enough my great grandparents on my Mother's side were Holmes the builders who built a lot of houses in Blundellsands in the 20's.  That would be some coincidence if you've just renovated a house built by my relatives!

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Hi all

Funny to hear all of your "posh bits of Merseyside" stories!!

I'd better put you out of your misery and confirm that we are, indeed, in the seaside town that had a couple of LYR stations and a CLC one as well - I'm told it used to be Lancashire - sore point apparently.

In other news, I get jabbed on Friday.  If some of the conspiracy theories are true, I might be modelling the GWR by Saturday :mutley :mutley

Barry

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Hi Barry.  The CLC has been replaced by the “ Footballers Wives Committee “ as I have been led to believe.  Best wishes Kevin

Last edited on Wed Mar 10th, 2021 02:03 am by Passed Driver

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The Gods have transpired to ensure that we are will be moving into the new house during the first two weeks in April.  Thereafter, I have a few jobs to complete BUT

I have set May 4th as the date when I will get into the shed and make a start on the railway.

In case you miss the reference, May the 4th be with me!!

Last edited on Sun Mar 28th, 2021 11:35 am by Barry Miltenburg

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:Happy :Happy :chicken :chicken :chicken :Happy :Happy

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Hi Barry.  Let us all hope that you can keep to your time table, better than BR or Not Work Rail. I would like to say that I haven’t heard that one before?:mutley:mutley:mutley Best wishes Kevin

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A whole month doing unimportant things ?  You need to get a grip on life Barry .....

Good luck with the move.

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Thanks Peter

In railway shed terms I have spent 10 months doing unimportant things (!) but I guess making the house nice enough to live in (having walls, a roof, water, heat, toilets, a kitchen etc) really does rank above building some baseboards and laying those storage roads.  (Other opinions are available).

Part of my motivation has been to get some rooms finished so that the furniture (currently residing in the shed) can be moved out to make way for the railway.  Getting the dining room and a couple of bedrooms ready accounts for about 30% of the shed floorspace and the boxes of kitchen stuff occupy another 10%.  By the time I get 20 sheets of Kingspan 25mm insulation cut up and fitted between the timber supports of the walls and roof and have a good tidy up, I will have enough space to start.

This week the shed Fuse Boards go live so I can get the ring mains and lighting circuits in.  There will be 2 ring mains - one for heating, ventilation, the fridge and hoover etc and a second linked to a master switch for controllers, bench supplies, soldering irons and such like that I can turn off when I leave the shed.  That way, I know I haven't left anything important turned on.  I found some red socket faces for this second ring so I will know which circuit is which.

A local electrical suppliers kindly did me a lighting design based on the size and height of the shed.  I will need 9 LED Daylight tube lights in 3 rows of 3.  He has calculated that this will give me a bright but not overpowering light.  I have a couple of these units already in "warm white" so will use these in the storage area where there is less chance I will want  to take photographs or capture video.  I had the same arrangement for the old Yarslow layout and it worked well.  The cost of the units is less than a decent new loco so I am happy.  I will, of course, do the instal work myself making it a cheap option.

In the meantime, I am practising my baseboard building skills by making a pair of built-in alcove cupboard units for the back sitting room.  I ordered the timber for the job and included a number of 8ft x 4ft sheets of 9mm decent quality ply claiming that they might make good shelves.  "Unfortunately", they looked a bit lightweight so I will have to keep them for the baseboards in the shed and use the 18mm ply I also ordered instead.  It also looks as if I over ordered on the 2x1 and 2x2 planed pine as well............

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I couldn't resist recreating the photo that began a series of articles by the late, great David Jenkinson in the Railway Modeller in the mid 1970's.  His layout became the Little Long Drag - mine still answers to "Plan D" - I must find a better title!

So, its May 4th and the rubber hits the road right here.  The scruffy attire adopted by the author is fully in keeping with the job in hand - cutting and fitting Kingspan insulation to the shed interior.  It's messy stuff although not as bad as polystyrene!



Here is the Kingspan cutting kit - a measure, straight edge and a saw.  Its only 25mm thick and although its foil backed on both sides, a saw is more than adequate for cutting it.  The foil prevent all the nasty UV and interplanetary stuff getting into the shed as well as helping keep heat in/out and cold out.  I have 25 sheets of the stuff, each 8ft x 4ft (nominally) and will do the walls and ceiling before covering the whole lot with thin MDF.  I was advised to use WPB (water proof board) on my old shed but the outer skin of that was somewhat "open" whereas the new shed has 38mm log roll cladding that is sealed together.  Luckily for me, it also keeps out spiders which I hate - even the little tiddly ones :-(



Here is the work in prgress shot - note the vast quantities of stuff still residing in the shed!!  The light is provided by a single inspection lamp but I have just taken delivery of 6 "Daylight" LED tube lights, each some 4ft long.  They will be installed after the lining is sorted with all cables running on the surface.  If you can see a cable, you are less likely to screw something through it so I am not a fan of burying cable in non-domestic situations.  Note that mechanical protection for cable in workshops etc is essential and I will do this in the garage.

More to do tomorrow as I continue to insulate and organise the shed.  Once the lining is up, I will paint it sky blue, put up the lights and then start on the ring mains.  My carpet guy has managed to source me some industrial carpet tiles for the floor although, given the amount of stuff in the way, I expect he will be leaving me to fit them!!

Barry

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Hi Barry,


Great news :cool:, much have been a very long tiring day judging by the time of your post.


Colin

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Congratulations Barry

You must be a very happy camper. I have been very impressed with your patience and humour throughout this saga

Best wishes

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Hi Colin

In fact I started after lunch and finished before dinner - there are still jobs to do around the house so I am mixing it in with shed "work".

John -People who know me would not describe me as patient!!  However, it is a trait I have had to learn.  The humour comes from a carefully nurtured madness..........

I took myself off to the woodyard this afternoon to order the linear timber and ply sheets to line the shed and build the baseboards.  I know that 4mm ply for the lining and 9mm ply for the baseboards would not be cheap but I had to come home and have a lie down :shock: :shock: :shock:.  If I had stopped for a coffee and cake on the way home, I would have spent four figures :shock: :shock: :shock:.

I have also taken the decision to order 2 more LED batten lights - each one has a colour temperature of 5800K which is in the "daylight" range.  I had two smaller ones which I rigged up but they were much dimmer and would have left Trinity Square/the branch line in relative darkness compared with Yarslow and the storage area.  Therefore I moved the old battens to the garage.

More insulation to be done tomorrow, helped by clearing out more stuff.  I built a bench and storage unit in the wife's garage today so can move out a freezer and drawer unit which she will host. 

Barry

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Barry, you have the plywood for baseboards! Well done that man and I can almost see the smile on your face, as you savour that first cut on the first baseboard!
 
Have fun and feel free to enjoy that coffee and a cake soon.
 
Bill
:cheers

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi Colin



I took myself off to the woodyard this afternoon to order the linear timber and ply sheets to line the shed and build the baseboards.  I know that 4mm ply for the lining and 9mm ply for the baseboards would not be cheap but I had to come home and have a lie down :shock: :shock: :shock:.  If I had stopped for a coffee and cake on the way home, I would have spent four figures :shock: :shock: :shock:.   


Barry

£10.48 ? that is four figures  so the coffee & cake £2.12 ?  Wait until you purchase paint!

Enjoy your woodwork....... :mutley

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Sol wrote: Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi Colin



I took myself off to the woodyard this afternoon to order the linear timber and ply sheets to line the shed and build the baseboards.  I know that 4mm ply for the lining and 9mm ply for the baseboards would not be cheap but I had to come home and have a lie down :shock: :shock: :shock:.  If I had stopped for a coffee and cake on the way home, I would have spent four figures :shock: :shock: :shock:.   


Barry

£10.48 ? that is four figures  so the coffee & cake £2.12 ?  Wait until you purchase paint!

Enjoy your woodwork....... :mutley


:mutley :mutley :mutley :mutley


My thinking exactly Sol ..... :thumbs.

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Right - time for action!

Oh, hang on.  The workshop/garage electrics need to be finished to move out the freezer and that pile of garden stuff to make room for the bike thats in the way of the saw...........

You will be familiar with those "chinese" puzzles where you get 8 tiles in a 3x3 grid with one blank space and you can only move one tile at a time until you create the complete image?

Imagine that on a humungous scale and thats what my shed infrastructure project is like.  I am slowly moving the contents around to gain access to the walls to put in the insulation, but moving something puts it in the way.  That can be cured by sorting out the workshop which needs lighting and electrics to take the freezer etc.  Lighting done, electrics 90% done but the weather has gone alarmingly "Bertie" and its absolutely lashing it down, so its rain stop play for thre afternoon - hence this post.  Having done the insulation, I get a delivery of timber next week to do the lining (I'm using 4mm MDF which is actually the same price as hardboard can you believe).  That will require the stuff all being moved AGAIN!!

I calm myself down by looking at the 1/10th scale trackplan pinned to the shed wall and imagining myself with a cold beer and a couple of freights winding their way through the platforms at Yarslow..............

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Oh, the joys of English weather!

As soon as I sent that last post, the sun came out again and it was back to work.

I have thus completed the electrics in the workshop, manhandled the freezer into its new home and moved a 7-drawer chest that will be filled with loads of stuff that survived the car-boot/tip clear out.  Most of that stuff currently resides in my shed so it's good news all round.

The rain has now returned and it looks well settled in so I will call it a day and plan a whole day of insulation in my shed tomorrow.  In the meantime, I am eBaying all sorts of unwanted, "pre-loved" stuff (I love that description!) to raise some money for point motors.  I only need about 50 or 60 more...........


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Three posts in one day - I must get a life!!

A rather soggy postman has just delivered a couple of these;




They are plug in controllers that are like timers but the "on" and "off" is temperature controlled rather than timer controlled.  I intend to set my oil-filled radiators on one and my extractor fan(s) on the other so that I can keep the shed at an even temperature.  Each costs about the same as a cheap wagon.  The black wire coming out of the side has a heat sensing probe on the end.

The extractor fans will be bathroom types but with the ability to shift larger-than-average cubic volumes.  Most bathroom fans assume you have a 8ft x 6ft bathroom and will change the air within a specified time.  Rather than have 4 or 5 of these, I can get a couple of heavy duty ones for far less cost.  Coupled with the foil backed insulation, I reckon that I will be snug as the proverbial bug.

Bill - I get the plywood for the baseboards delivered next week (let's hope for a better day weather wise than today) and will then get very excited.  I have cork, glue, track, points, pins, wire, joiners and enough point motors, relays, switches, solder, heat shrink and tag strip to make a real start on the storage yards.  As soon as I can, I am going to be running something, even if its up and down 6ft of straight track!!! 

Perhaps then I can get my thread back onto railways and away from DIY and house building............

Last edited on Thu May 6th, 2021 01:26 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Brilliant

:doublethumb :doublethumb :doublethumb :doublethumb :doublethumb

Best,

Bill

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Right - time for action!
...........
You will be familiar with those "chinese" puzzles where you get 8 tiles in a 3x3 grid with one blank space and you can only move one tile at a time until you create the complete image?
.............
I didn't realise that you'd been in my "shed"! (our under-house space)

Every year it's the same ritual in March once it's cooled down a bit, solve the Chinese puzzle of 11 months random stacking (to put away another day) in time to make access for the man to do our annual full termite examination. He comes quarterly to inspect the monitors then the works from roof space to sub-floor in April.

This year I excelled myself, he even commented! So much "space" created that I started dreaming that just maybe I could create a long run for my mainline stock once I bit the bullet and migrate to a new setting........ zzzzzzzz





Last edited on Thu May 6th, 2021 09:46 pm by Colin W

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Steady progress and looking good Barry. You'll get there... are there beers in the fridge yet? That is a very important part of the chinese puzzle.

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Hi Marty

I can see the fridge but getting the thing plugged in..............

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Its modelling Jim, but not as we know it.

I really envy you guys who are wrestling with issues about uncouplers, short circuits, failed servos or how to kit bash model A into model B.  This is my current World - sheets of insulation have now been fitted into the walls and I will complete the ceiling tomorrow.  Baseboards are about 10 days away I reckon with tracklaying planned to start mid-June.

Yesterday I had a cold flash and the thought "does it have to be this big?"  After a lay down, I concluded that I was just being sent doo-lally by the polystyrene fumes.  Had I not escaped it's clutches, I might have considered running something GWR :lol: :lol: :lol:

Thanks guys for your patience and moral support during a tough time waiting for the start date to tick around.  I am not afraid to say that I have drawn a great benefit from the forum over the past 12 months, both from a modelling standpoint and also personally.

:cheers

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Charming post Barry, very nicely put.:thumbs
Good luck with the plywood delivery.

Best wishes

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Hi Barry.  Nice to hear about your progress, but, remember “ Earth was not built in a Day “. Best wishes Kevin

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I like the picture above Barry showing your new railway home, which still looks cavernous, even with all the 'stuff' about. What fun lies ahead, as the journey continues!

John's post captures the mood very well, as the vast majority of us derive great support from this forum and long may it continue.

So boldly go with the continuing mission, exploring the expanse of this unravelling space and establish a new interim frontier, remembering that although Yarslow wasn't built in a day, 'tis amazin' what can be done over a Bank Holiday weekend!

Have fun,

Bill

Last edited on Wed May 12th, 2021 04:16 am by Longchap

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Space. . . The final Frontier. . .  :shock:. . . Start at one end Barry and keep your back turned to the rest as you go. . Soon your back will hit the far wall and you'll be thinking. . . 
Wonder if I can Extend   :hmm


Looking good so far  :doublethumb

Cheers

Matt

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Look at that S  P A C  E !! Oh my!  Steady as she goes. You are doing famously!

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Like a Tardis ?? small on the outside but inside ??????

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"Did someone order a baseboard?"

200 metres of PSE timber and a pile of 4mm and 9mm plywood arrives on a palette by truck and crane. 

I haven't been this excited since a bloke turned up in a giant concrete truck for the shed base pour!!

Tomorrow I start fitting the plywood lining and will then do the ring main electrics and outside lights.  My next-door neighbour's grandsoon (who is 8) is as excited as I am about the layout and can't wait apparently for restictions to lift so he can come and run some trains.  No pressure there, then.............

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Hi Barry.   Just as well that you are organised. Luckily you have got a drive, do you do coach parties too?      Best wishes Kevin

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Just a quick update - photos to follow.

Today was a "shed day" so I had the chance to cut the 3mm ply into 500mm widths for lining the roof.  The wall where the storage sidings are going is now fully lined as is the section on the scenic side below the baseboard height.  I will be adding the scenic backboards next and have just plugged into a local artist group  who are coming to look at my proposal that someone paints the scenic backscene with "sky".  Lincolnshire/South Yorkshire is very flat so I don't need hills etc!!

I am targetting the end of May to have the lining complete, the gaps filled/sanded, everything painted a base blue colour and the electrics in.  There will be a ring main for the fridge, heating, hoover etc and then a switched radial circuit for power supplies, controllers, soldering iron etc.  That way, I can switch everything off from one switch and know that I have not left anything on overnight.  As previously mentioned, I have bought a number of double plug sockets coloured red for this circuit.

The 9mm plywood is for the baseboard tops, supported by the 3x1(nominal) PSE.  I am using 2x2 (nominal) PSE for legs.  All other things being equal, that suggests that I can do my detailed measuring/planning in early June and then start baseboard construction.  I am minded to build all of the outer baseboards first rather than just the storage area.  That way, I can draw out the alignments for the main line etc to ensure that it all fits as planned.  I have found AnyRail to be very accurate but I'm not sure if that accuracy extends to something 26 feet long!!

I must also get to unpack all of the boxes still containing my railway "stuff".  In there, I am hoping to find the pointwork, pins, joiners, switches. heat shring, tag-strip, wire and other paraphanalia that I bought during the move/lockdown period.  It should also reveal my toolkits, glues, bench power supplies etc etc.

Track-laying is pencilled in for the middle/end of June.

Something that has kept me going is my collection of notes, wiring diagrams and pictures showing how I am proposing to do things.  Thankfully, I am still able to read my own writing and understand my hand-drawn sketches!!

Barry

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The adventure begins!!! It should be a very busy and interesting period between now and Autumn.Please don't neglect to document it with loads of pictures Barry!
Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Hi John

I will do my best to keep everyone updated without over-doing it!!

Barry

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As promised - pictures showing the storage siding side and the scenic side boarded below baseboard height.  I've managed a bit more today so now have the storage siding wall completed and the lower parts of the ceiling done on both sides.  Later this week I will finish the scenic side, the far end wall and the rest of the ceiling.





You will appreciate the "Chinese Puzzle" aspect mentioned earlier!!  Every hour of carpentry is accompanied by 20 minutes of moving things!!!

Barry

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Now that's a project

Cheers
Evan

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You will certainly be getting your daily step count in running up and down the length of that shed Barry,  :thumbs
Good progress so far and getting closer to that FIRST bit of track goingbdown  :Happy

Cheers

Matt

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Good evening all

I recently posted that I had spent a bit of time doing house stuff and other unimportant things (like being married, being a Dad and Grandad etc) only for Peter Mac to have a go at me - so this week I thought I had better put in a shift to avoid his further wrath!!! :lol: :lol:

The shed lining is now complete, I have fitted a rail of 3" x 1" PSE at waist level to carry the electrical ring main and the switched mains sockets (as described above somewhere), mounted the sockets awaiting some wiring, filled all the lining joins above baseboard height, sorted out the remaining timber so that I can actually move in the place, opened and sorted all of the boxes and crates of stuff that will be absorbed by the layout - I now have boxes of just electrical stuff, tools, scenery, buildings, trees etc - modified my plan to fit the exact shed area (the plan was 1 3/4 inches too long and 3/4 inch too wide (it doesn't sound much but my storage sidings are calculated to the nearest 30thou!!!!!) AND managed to take Mrs M to lunch a couple of times to ensure that future shed days happen.

As it goes, tomorrow we have a small snagging list of jobs and after that, the house renovation is as finished as we can get it.  Just waiting on some flooring and the bloke to do the patio.  Time then to start some modelling you ask?

Nearly - we've got some decorating to do in some flats we are going to rent out but Mrs M is more than capable - or so I tell her :lol: :lol: :lol:

In the next week or so, baseboards will emerge from the pile of timber recently delivered so I will post some pictures of those with, perhaps, an engine or two so that you can get a feel for the scale of the project.

I must keep looking busy in case Peter Mac is reading this :pedal :pedal :pedal

Barry

Last edited on Wed May 26th, 2021 04:53 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Good evening all

I recently posted that I had spent a bit of time doing house stuff and other unimportant things (like being married, being a Dad and Grandad etc) only for Peter Mac to have a go at me - so this week I thought I had better put in a shift to avoid his further wrath!!! :lol: :lol:

The shed lining is now complete, I have fitted a rail of 3" x 1" PSE at waist level to carry the electrical ring main and the switched mains sockets (as described above somewhere), mounted the sockets awaiting some wiring, filled all the lining joins above baseboard height, sorted out the remaining timber so that I can actually move in the place, opened and sorted all of the boxes and crates of stuff that will be absorbed by the layout - I now have boxes of just electrical stuff, tools, scenery, buildings, trees etc - modified my plan to fit the exact shed area (the plan was 1 3/4 inches too long and 3/4 inch too wide (it doesn't sound much but my storage sidings are calculated to the nearest 30thou!!!!!) AND managed to take Mrs M to lunch a couple of times to ensure that future shed days happen.

As it goes, tomorrow we have a small snagging list of jobs and after that, the house renovation is as finished as we can get it.  Just waiting on some flooring and the bloke to do the patio.  Time then to start some modelling you ask?

Nearly - we've got some decorating to do in some flats we are going to rent out but Mrs M is more than capable - or so I tell her :lol: :lol: :lol:

In the next week or so, baseboards will emerge from the pile of timber recently delivered so I will post some pictures of those with, perhaps, an engine or two so that you can get a feel for the scale of the project.

I must keep looking busy in case Peter Mac is reading this :pedal :pedal :pedal

Barry


Pot, Kettle Black. . Nuff said  :mutley

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hi all

I'd better put you out of your misery and confirm that we are, indeed, in the seaside town that had a couple of LYR stations and a CLC one as well - I'm told it used to be Lancashire - sore point apparently.
In other news, I get jabbed on Friday.  If some of the conspiracy theories are true, I might be modelling the GWR by Saturday
Barry

Barry,

Just playing catch up. By any chance did the old station become a supermarket car park? Strangely enough the same fate seems to have fallen on both Weston and Clevedon of my interest so I imagine it's not uncommon

Also how are your GWR Kings running now? :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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Hi Colin
Yes, one station is now Morrison’s!!

Luckily, no after-effects from the first jab but I have the second one on Bank Holiday Monday so there’s still time to get Swindonised!!

Last edited on Wed May 26th, 2021 06:26 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Electrics now sorted, temperature controlled cooler fans running (its sunny on a British Bank Holiday !!!) and baseboard construction under way.  Yes - that does say 29.6 degrees on the display!!  Once running for half an hour, it was down to 23.  The actual fan is a Dyson Air Cool unit.  It remains to be seen if the unit is sufficient on its own to cope with the long hot British summers :lol: :lol:



The baseboards are 9mm ply supported by a frame of 3" x 1" PSE.  Legs are 2" x 2", notched to accept the bracing pieces.  This second view also shows the white ring-main sockets and the red (switched) sockets that I can turn off from the doorway.


Taken from the entrance to Trinity Square station, this view shows (1) how much of a mess the shed remains, despite my best efforts, (2) the ambience now that the 8 "daylight" LED tube lights have been wired in and (3) the amount of household storage I will have down the right hand side where the storage baseboard is 3ft wide and 4ft high.  The white marks on the walls to the left are filler - used where the plywood lining is joined.  This will be smoothed and painted a sky blue colour in due course. 

My flooring guy dropped off some 2ft x 2ft carpet tiles today asking when it was convenient for him to come and lay them, once I had cleared the space!!  Needless to say, he left the spray adhesive and I will be doing them myself.

Bashing on...............

Marty
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Ah... the clutter... my layout room is much the same. I like the exposed roof trusses.

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If you glue your carpet tiles down, you'll have a devil of a job replacing any.  Why not just use carpet tape to hold a couple of lines then the others just sit in between ?

I envy you your space Barry.   

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Petermac wrote: If you glue your carpet tiles down, you'll have a devil of a job replacing any.  Why not just use carpet tape to hold a couple of lines then the others just sit in between ?

I envy you your space Barry.   

Barry will suck them up every week during his routine vacuuming run, that's why

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Hopefully the carpet tile glue supplied by the contractor is the low tack stuff which permits easy replacement, although I rather fancy with all his research, Barry knows what he's doing by now.

Anyroad, impressive work output Barry and we can tell that you're enjoying the regained freedom to model!

Best,

Bill

Last edited on Thu Jun 3rd, 2021 03:01 am by Longchap

Barry Miltenburg
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Thanks all

To be honest, I hadn't considered lifting them up and thought that the spray glue would be ideal.  I get the point, however, that if I spill my beer and want to change a tile, it might be a pain, resulting in a confession to Mrs M about activities in the shed :oops: :oops:.  I have got the fridge up and running but, for now, it is populated with bottles of water.  "Easing in gently" I call it :lol:

I am delighted to think that someone thinks that I know what I am doing!!  Yes, I research and test a lot of things but carpet tile glue isn't one of them so I will have to rely on my flooring guy's advice.  He has laid all sorts of flooring throughout the house so I am happy that he knows what he is talking about.  That said, he flies for a break to Portugal on Monday and it goes on the UK Amber list on Tuesday so........... :hmm

Bashing on.......


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The first bit of framework is in with a temporary top, just to see how it looks.  For context, the Standard 3MT and her train are about 4 feet long.  The cross bracing is carefully positioned to avoid under-baseboard point motors and extra noggins can be seen where the plywood tops will join.  Legs are 3 feet apart.



You can see that I am having to work around quite a lot of stuff but as the baseboard continues around the shed, the stuff in the centre will diminish and it will get easier.  The last bit will be a doddle!!!



This close up was taken to test the lighting rig.  I am happy with the results and the positioning of the units.  I have a compact 35mm camera (Sony RX100) so can mess around with settings or just point-and-shoot.  This photo is taken in basic mode with the lighting set to "daylight" to compensate for the 5800K colour of the LED tubes.

Unexpected visitors slowed me down this weekend and, having lost my footing on the pile of timber, I joined the Falling Down Club - luckily just a few scratches - very much me being an idiot rather than any underlying health issues.  I've got a busy week but by the end of June I am hoping to have the rest of the framework built and be thinking about laying some track.

Bashing on........

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Hi Barry.  Very nice wagon, is that a kit or a RTR, and the weathering is excellent. Best wishes Kevin 

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Hi Kevin

This is one of 3 in a triple "traders" set produced by Bachmann - each of the sets covers a specific geographical region.  My set covers Derbyshire etc hence this wagon is Chesterfield based.  Don't forget that, by the early 1960's when my layout is set, all surviving Grouping and PO wagons were "common user" and thus wandered far from their natural homes.

The wagon came in this weathered condition - I will add a bit more to it in time - a bit of brake dust and general filth to accenuate the age of the thing.

Barry

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As its Sunday and I can't get the power tools out, I decided to make a few marks on the baseboard to test how the tracks will go.  On the left, I have laid out the pointwork for the loco storage area serving the Trinity Square storage sidings (coloured purple on the trackplan).  On the right are the end points for the 3 curves leaving the storage sidings at the UP end.  The outer mark shows where the curve ends for the UP line, the centre mark is the start of the DOWN line curve and the left hand one is the start of the the curve towards the Trinity Square storage sidings. 

Note with the middle mark how it's easier to correct mistakes at this stage rather than after the track has been laid. 

A bit of research and playing around has revealed that I only need 1 inch outside the width of the track to allow for the swing of the longest coaches or a 4-wheeled leading bogie of a 4-6-0 or 4-4-0 locomotive.  Therefore, this is the allowance made between the UP line and the lining of the shed.

Bashing on this week....

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What, recognisable baseboards and backscenes and now the appearance of track! The band’s started playing in the railway room, so rock on and roll with it Barry.
 
Bash on,
 
Bill

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Working on the railroad! Hooray!

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As a total distraction from baseboard building (and other domestic duties) I have today taken delivery of a BigTrainSound CamCar.




The first photo shows how small it is when compared with a Bachmann van and the second shows, what I thought was an issue, the height of the coupling.  It was only when I investigated further that I realised that I had the truck upside down and that the camera sits on top of the platform rather than inside the well.

The truck is 3D printed with a single coupling and metal wheels.  The camera has a 2GB SD card which can hold about 30 minutes of video.  Downloading onto the laptop is easy using the standard USB cable they supply although videos are created in .avi format and require converting through Microsoft Video Editor into mp4.  (Video Editor is bundled free with Windows 10 and possibly with earlier versons of Windows as well.  Its easy to use).

Video quality is OK (not 1080p) but the test came out alright.  The instructions suggest maximum light on the subject in question - always a sure fire way of increasing quality!  When I get a chance I will take some shots in the shed and post them for consideration.

Overall I would give a 9/10 - (1) at £22, its a great price, (2) its a piece of cake to use for video and photos although the instructions don't tell you how to shoot photos, its quite intuitive, (3) downloading is actually easier than my Soni digital camera but (4) the avi is a nuisance but not an issue and (5) higher resolution would be nice but, come on!, it's £22 and less than 1 inch square!!!

Barry

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Barry,

I just ordered a camera like that on-line two days ago so it's good to hear you're happy with yours. Mine is coming at budget shipping rates (strapped to the leg of a pigeon?) from China so will be here later in July  :shock:

From the specs and pics the one I ordered looks remarkably like the ones being offered by the modelling trade but was at an on-line price; no 3D wagon included with mine but it will easily fit on a simple conflat which I was thinking might itself be a tad low.

Will report in due course.

BTW I recommend you download the free program "Handbrake" to first convert AVI. files (and MOV. files etc.) to something more useful i.e. MP4. You get options to choose your compression rate.

For example I had a 2 minute - 243MB AVI file out of my 12 yr old Canon IXUS that reduced to a 26MB MP4 file with no loss of detail. Without that first step I couldn't video edit either.


Last edited on Tue Jun 15th, 2021 08:05 am by Colin W

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Hi Colin

I will have a look at that

Barry

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It's a great feeling when you start handling track again Barry - I just hope you can remember where you stored all your "stuff"


That looks a very interesting little camera set-up.  I have a key-ring camera which does an acceptable job - given  sufficient light !  As you so rightly say, light is the key with video.................

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Barry,


since it's drifting off topic, I've sent you a PM with some comments about using the CamCar camera.


Colin

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Here is the shed looking tidier than it has for some time!!  The baseboards and tops are now installed (tops not fixed down yet) for the storage sidings (top picture) and the station side (bottom picture).  The "stump" at the far end will become the peninsular containing the branch and Trinity Square station, coming down to within a few feet of the camera.

Completion of these baseboards has given me the chance to tidy up the storage underneath the railway.  It all looks a bit busy but the whole of the area underneath the layout on the far wall and everything down the right hand side beyond the office chair will disappear because its all layout related.  The 4 crates of books and then stuff piled up behind them (rolling stock mostly) will also find a new home.

The gap in the legs just beyond the blue chair will be my workbench and I have reserved a bit of 22mm plywood as a top.  I will build shelves for storage of tools etc when the time comes.

I am running a bit short on timber for the central peninsular and will need to order some more 3" x 1" as well a couple of sheets of 9mm plywood.  Whilst I am waiting for that to come, I will get to work cutting up the cork sheeting (I have 3 rolls 10m x 1m x 2mm) and start planning the storage roads.  I have a chalk-line which will allow me to produce straight lines 20 feet long.  These will become the centre-lines for the tracks and I will lay cork strip either side of that line onto which the track will be pinned.  The baseboard noggins have been carefully planned to avoid point motors although most of the storage-area points will be worked by surface-mounted motors (there are only a dozen or so where there is not enough space between tracks to do that).

Bashing on........

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That looks a great space Barry !  It's been a long time coming but Your getting closer and closer to getting some track down  :Happy
Cheers

Matt

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That is indeed, a brilliant space Barry - how I wish I had that at my disposal.  I can imagine those A4 "Streaks" with their prototypically long trains stretching their legs down there......... :roll:

Using a chalk line for your straights is a stroke of genius - why didn't I think of that ?  I used a spirit level, which was great up to a metre long, whilst my chalk line sat in a drawer gathering dust - or whatever chalk does when it's not on duty ....... :brickwall

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So much space, so clean and ready to apply your ideas! I can’t wait to see some long runners as Peter said!

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Thanks guys - tracklaying is on the horizon.

I read somewhere ages ago (and have mentioned before on here somewhere) that the length of your train should be 1/3rd of the visual space you present it in.  That means, with 26 feet, my trains should be about 8ft 8in long.

104 inches gives you (a) loco + 25 wagons + brake or (b) loco + 8 coaches + tail van.

In such an environment, 12 coach trains look too big and a 10 wagons freight looks short.  I am fortunate in that my local club test track (now available again) is about 26 feet long so I have tested this theory and am certainly a fan.

Yarslow sits on a secondary main line so no A4's or Pacifics rushing about although I will have V2's and a few 2-8-0's on freights.  The closest I get to a Class A passenger train is an Inter District working behind a B1.

Barry

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: 1/3rd of the visual space you present it in. 

Well I break that rule frequently!!!

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Luckily Chris, it's only an suggestion, not a rule !!

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Your railway room is coming on apace now Barry, I like the high baseboards, eye level when sitting I guess and a boon for working on point motors etc. That's a really neat little go-pro wagon there, guess it's 3D printed like so many bits n pieces. I see you have adopted the flat world approach (baseboard), I have done likewise with a view to re-using the boards for subsequent layouts and that most of it is a station anyway. Thanks you for the interesting pics
Roger

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Hi Roger

I have adopted the flat-Earth approach, mainly because of this.....


This is near Gainsborough, not far from where my imaginary line would be if the either the towns or the line had existed (neither of which actually did/do!!).  The countryside is really flat so open baseboards etc would be a bit pointless.  That has given me a few headaches when it comes to taking the running lines off-scene but the use of trees and buildings makes it work.  Thank heavens for Iain Rice and his viewblockers!!

That said, Highmarsh sits amongst the few low hills that do exist in this part of the country, so the branch will be built using the open baseboard technique.

Barry

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What are #iaian Rice's view blockers, Barry?  I can imagine their purpose from the title, but it would be great to have a bit of explanation.
Michael

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Hi Michael



On the left above is the way we have all made our tracks disappear a thousand times - a bridge/tunnel arrangement that conveniently ends the scenic section of our layout.

That's great if you can use height but layouts set in Lincolnshire, East Anglia etc etc cannot do this so Ian Rice, a modeller who based a number of his creations in Suffolk made extensive use of the "view-blocker" - see above right.  The view is literally blocked by an object like a building, row of trees or embankment.



Although this is a painting, the same point applies - the train is about to go off-scene behind some trees.  No bridge, no tunnel, just something to take the view of the train away.

Hope that makes sense

Barry

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Thank you Barry, we Newbies most appreciate such examples of knowledge.  Out of interest. other than trees and buildings, are there any other suggestions?  I only ask because I will have such a problem to disguise and had gone for a tunnel, but now I am thinking there might be a different way....
Michael

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Hmmm... :hmm... dinosaur?   :mutley :mutley

To be honest, trees/nature or buildings is about it really but that is quite a wide scope.  Have a look when you are next out and about - its amazing what obscures your view of ends of roads, tracks, railways etc.  I take my inspiration from the lie of the land and play around with positioning to achieve what I want.

Barry

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Hi Barry.   The Bachmann triple pack reminds of “Only Fools and Horses “ episode with Trotters independent Traders.Best wishes Kevin

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Monday is Shed-day so it's been a full day of planning and measuring to see what's what.

It became quite clear quite quickly that my huge range of various curves were going to present all sorts of issues when it came to laying out the plan on the baseboards.  I had everything from 238 inches (through the Yarslow platforms) to 21 inches in the storage area.  The first job this morning was to standardise the curves to fit, where possible, into the range I could cover with the Tracksetta pieces I have (18, 21, 24, 30, 36, 42, 48 and 60 inch radii).

I wanted the track through the platforms to be on as wide a sweep as possible so I made a 120 inch and 216 inch template to use.  Every other curve (and combinations of curves) where modified to suit the Tracksettas or the Peco track gauge thingy that has spacers for laying parallel tracks.

At first, staring at a blank baseboard and the pile of points and the plan, I must confess to wondering where on Earth to start but I dived in with the rearmost storage track, situated at 1-inch centre from the back wall.  That allowed me to draw in the lines for the storage roads themselves and, having made a large 12-degree template out of card so that I could align the pointwork properly, began to pencil in the track.



This was an extension of the track marks I made last week.....



...and this is as far as I got when I stopped for the day.  The pointwork is joined up but not laid yet as I have all that electrofaffing to do that goes with live frog pointwork.  The power feeds were marked on to ensure I would not forget them! (see next to the Sharpie between the two points).



This is what it looks like from the other end. The drawn curve on the left is the approach to the Trinity Square storage sidings.  Note that I have enough space for surface-mounted peco point motors in the majority of places.  Only a few will need to be mounted under the surface and the baseboard support noggins are carefully planned to allow that.



Here is the loco storage area, seen as a loose collection of points last week.  Note the paper templates for the curves!  The Airfix/Dapol turntable will not be used as a turntable - the deck will lift off as a cartridge so that I can remove locos to the servicing desk or swap them out completely.  Most of the Trinity Square traffic can be hauled by small engines, perhaps running tender first.  That also allows me to use a short section of 21-inch radius curve on the storage approach.

Later in the week I am planning another couple of Shed-days and am expecting to get the other end of the storage roads drawn in.  I can then start to cut cork strip and actually laying some track.  I managed to find my soldering iron today so all that electrofaffing can be done and I can get some wires soldered to track.  Thereafter, a few crocodile clips and some gaffa tape should see an engine running

:Happy :Happy :Happy

Bashing on....

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Hi Barry.  You are making good progress there, but, I was thinking about the position of the Turntable, personally I would hate to cut a hole in the baseboard, and then find that it was wrong. Of course seeing the baseboard in life gives a better viewpoint, could, or would, you use a scrap piece of plywood with a turntable size hole to confirm the best site.  Best wishes Kevin 

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Ohh noo INK!! on those lovely virgin baseboards :shock: I confess as an engineer and always making mistakes (changes of mind) I stick to a pencil and rubber ;-) BUT the expanse of those baseboards looks fantastic :)

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Hi Kevin - no hole, no turntable, just a cartridge as described.

Roger - there is pencil underneath!!  I went over the lines with a Sharpie to make sure I laid track on the right pencil lines - there are few where I was juggling things around!!

Barry

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Wow, you aren’t going to be short of storage!

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Hmmm... :hmm... dinosaur?   :mutley :mutley

To be honest, trees/nature or buildings is about it really but that is quite a wide scope.  Have a look when you are next out and about - its amazing what obscures your view of ends of roads, tracks, railways etc.  I take my inspiration from the lie of the land and play around with positioning to achieve what I want.

Barry


Dinosaur?  Now you're talking!!

Super to see track going down. although green with envy at your space and boards!  Still, we can all have a vicarious large layout, now Barry!  It already looks super!

Michael

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TeaselBay wrote: Wow, you aren’t going to be short of storage!


Hi Chris

I have four storage zones;
(a) the main running loops providing 8 tracks in each direction holding a total of 34 trains
(b) 5 sidings holding the trains that will terminate at Trinity Square
(c) 3 sidings for trains terminating at Yarslow
(d) a train cartridge holding an infinite number of trains that will run when required - these include seasonal special workings, engineering trains, milk and pigeon trains etc.  At present I have 56 trains.

There is also an area where I can hold spare and "rotation" locos

Going forward, if I want to run a cement train, I can pull those wagons from one of the E class freights and put them on a cartridge.  That way, I am not limited by train numbers.  EAch cartridge is 66 inches long.

Barry

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I am aware that this thread had become a "House-buying From Hell" magazine followed by an episode from  "My House Is Killing Me".  Therefore, I stopped posting until something more Railway Modelling could be discussed.

Well that day has arrived and we are back on the right track.......





... 18 tracks to be precise!  I have now laid the main line storage roads - 8 in each direction with a by-pass track around the outside of each.  The Gresley coach is included to give the thing a sense of scale.  The track in the foreground of the first photo will be used to fill the space on the right with a further 11 roads for the terminating trains from Trinity Square, the loco storage area (at the far end) and the cartridge in the bottom left hand corner.

The tracks are arrow-straight thanks to my chalk lines, VERY careful measuring with a home-made centre gauge (track centres here are very tight) and a 40 inch steel rule.

The wires sticking up are the feeds for the track sections. the isolator sections for locos and the slow-down zones before the isolating sections - power will be fed to a 12-inch track section via a 22 Ohm restistor to slow the trains to a gentle stop.  Isolator sections are all 10-inches as determined by my Brake Tests carried out on the old layout.

In all, these yards consume about 48 sets of points and 113 yards of track - that's about 4 3/4 miles of real size track!!  I have got through 4 packets of track pins (track is pinned every 6 inches or so), 8 packets of rail joiners - the list just goes on.

The vast majority of the track you see here was rescued from the previous layout, it's cartridges and a bit of left over stuff from an old railway club project.  The pile of Peco point motors will be mostly surface mounted and all will have the switches fitted.



Each of the main line yard points will have one of these control boards comprising a 13-tag board and an 8-pin relay.  3 tags for the point motor wire, 4 for the relay power in/out and distribution, 3 for the mimic panel LEDs and 3 for the frog polarity changing.  The yellow and black wires seen on this one are the frog polarity wires whilst
the black ones are for the LEDs.  The red/blue wires seen sticking up are for the UP line feeds.  Each circuit has its own colour so blue is for DOWN feeds, red for point motors etc.  That way, I can keep some track on what does what.

I am hoping to complete the Trinity Square sidings next and will then dive into wiring it all up to make things work.

Bashing on........

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Hi Barry.   Thank you for your reply. I was / am thinking about a mini turntable as a space saver. A DIY job, but I am uncertain about using a five inch hole cutter. I have used all sizes up to about three inches, if I do the job I am hoping that the scrap? from the middle will be the actual table. But in the meantime I am awaiting for the postie, or to get fit enough to go to the shop myself.   Best wishes Kevin

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:

Well that day has arrived and we are back on the right track.......





... 18 tracks to be precise!  I have now laid the main line storage roads - 8 in each direction with a by-pass track around the outside of each.  The Gresley coach is included to give the thing a sense of scale.  
Wow, just Wow

Oh, and Jealous!

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To repeat Alan's reaction, "Wow, oh Wow!"; says it all.
But then quietly glad I'm stay small
:cool wink
I'd never cope with that many points to manage, and all that space to keep clean,

Colin


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OMG! That is some feat.

Cheers
Evan

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It feels good to be getting somewhere!  Last night I added another 5 sidings at the front of the board and over the weekend will get my head around the cartridge arrangement.  I have just read Barry's thread on conduit cartridges and like that idea - worth exploring.

The sidings here are somewhat vast as they have to hold 54 trains comprising 700 vehicles and 40-odd locomotives.  Its all part of my desire to have 2 of the key elements of (what I consider to be) my "perfect layout" - variety of traffic and variety of trains.  Most of the train classes are represented on this secondary main line and I wanted multiples of each type.

In a couple of weeks, I hope to get the wiring advanced enough to have something running.

At the risk of blowing my own trumpet, details of my old layout, planning for this one and little "Bite Size BIts" of stuff are posted on the Yarslow Model Railway YouTube channel for those interested and with time on their hands :lol:

Barry

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Hi Barry,
Thanks for you comment on my plastic cartridges/ cassettes.
Yours should be able to be modified at leisure to incorporate hinged end stops and auto current pick-up if you think worthwhile, saves a bit of time and fiddle to enjoy more operating.
Yesterday I wired in the short Loco cassette at the end of carriage cassette which can be left isolated for auto stop or switched on for Loco control.
A micro switch only allows power to the Loco cassette when the longer carriage cassette is in position preventing running Loco onto baseboard 😳
You may have noticed the remains of a turntable ( hole) in picture but decided cassette system would give more flexibility after reading your posts, thanks 👍
Going to make more short cassettes next and docking at other storage sidings this afternoon.

Barry T

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Hi Barry

Sounds a simple idea - the best ones usually are - that I will explore.  Some of my cartridges are 66 inches long so integrity will be a key factor of success.  I might have a scout around the DIY sheds and builders merchants for ideas and suitable material.

What did you use to fix the track down?  Most of these conduit plastics are quite greasy.

I was going to use wood as the current train list only requires 10 or so cartridges but they do require a bit of construction so ready made troughs have some appeal!

Barry

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I used superglue on last couple of sleepers aligning rails with wooden setting piece which fits snugly between cassette sides.

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Hi Barry T.   With my plank only, small layout, which Barry M helped me sort out a wiring problem. However I have built an extension to my Inglenook Junction with copper clad sleepers soldered at the ends and glued to the baseboard with araldite. Best wishes Kevin

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I'd imagine the conduit is filled PVC# of some grade. AFAIK this sort of material doesn't have much if any plasticiser but it might have something on the surface to aid extrusion.

Try light fine sanding to roughen the surface and remove any production additives then it should glue with standard epoxy. I find Superglue tends to be too brittle for anything subject to a shock or sideways pressure, very good glue though it is.

# an inert cheap filler like calcium carbonate, aids UV resistance as well


If by any chance it's polypropylene or one of the polythene family then there's little hope for successful gluing. These polymers have very poor UV stability and this is why PVC is generally favoured in these outdoor applications.









Last edited on Sat Jul 10th, 2021 11:48 pm by Colin W

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Hi Colin,I’m not sure of material but at a guess I would say PVC, I joined two lengths together using the connector and UHU SUPER because that’s what I had and so far bond has not failed.
Pound shop super glue was used to fix the track in position each end of cassette on about three sleepers, so far OK.
This has been a case of putting a concept together as it went along and off the top of my head so no drawings or design just a few basic measurements for train length.
Barry T

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Thanks Kevin 👍

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We have had loads of rain lately, so a great opportunity to get in the shed and get lots done.



The storage sidings for Trinity Square are now in - 4 in the foreground for the passenger trains, back left (beside the bottle) are two long sidings for parcels and vans trains and back centre, the sidings for the Wythesney trains - a ficticious end-on connection with an ex-L&Y branch.  This allows me to run my few ex-LMS engines or treat myself to an open-cab 0-6-0T or LNWR 0-8-0!!



The first 8 point control boards are now fully wired and need fixing down.  The point motor will be screwed and the board/relay combination fixed with the hot glue gun.  On reflection, whilst I built these on the bench, I will build the next 24 in situ to avoid the birds-nest of wiring!  I will complete the heat-shrinking once everything is in and tested,



As she came out of the storage box first, J52 68878 had the honour of being the first engine to run through the pointwork to check frog polarities.  Without power to the relays, they are in "passive" mode and with the points in the "normal" position, polarity is correct.  I powered the relays (switched on and off via the point motor switches) and proved that the relays are working to change polarity as the point motors change.



Finally, I have made the control panel for the loops.  The upper switches, buttons and LEDs are for the Up line and the lower set for the Down line.  The switches operate the points with the LEDs either side confirming that the points have thrown.  The four large holes will house LEDs advising when the main continuous run is set.  The red push buttons provide power to the isolator sections in each of the storage sidings - 34 in all.  Note that track Up4 and Down4 each contain 3 trains - these are the stopping passengers in each direction.  I needed to build this to enable the points to be motorised.  With 34 isolator switches, 16 sets of points and 36 LEDs, you can imagine the amount of soldering practice I am going to get this week!!  I also need to make another 24 point control boards - the first 8 taught me how to make them and I reckon each is about 20 minutes work.

Having built this, I have decided to add another twin track control panel to the storage area leaving the existing panel controller for the Loco storage/Trinity Square sidings area.  That way, if I get an operator for this area, he/she can run trains around the main line independent from whatever shunting activity the Yarslow operator is engaged in.  It also allows him/her to run 2 trains on the main circuit and still have a controller free to organise the Trinity Square trains and engines.  This panel will be duplicated at Yarslow so that I can run the main lines from my work bench.

This coming weekend, Mrs M is off to London for a friends wedding so I will have 3 days camped in the shed.  Beer in the fridge, Pizza Hut on speed-dial - what more could I want!!

Bashing on...........

Last edited on Tue Jul 13th, 2021 08:14 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Huzzah….it lives!

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Hi Barry.  Bravo, Bravo, it really looks complex. Just as well you know what you are doing. With that many tracks to operate let’s hope that nothing goes wrong on the far side. Best wishes Kevin 

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Wow. That is amazing. Cant wait to see it running!

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I cant wait to see it running either :lol: :lol: :lol:

Full on weekend despite it being really hot here.  The shed is a few degrees warmer than outside with the cold air fan running and the window/door open.  If we get a really hot summer then I must instal the extractor fan that's still sitting in its box.

The wiring in the storage sidings is actually 5 seperate circuits and I have tried to tackle each in turn.
  1. The frog polarity connections and electrofaffing required for live frog pointwork is all done and sorted.  The polarity is actually changed by the relays but in Normal/Passive mode, all pointwork leads to the continuous run so I can run something to test it works (see previous post)
  2. The power to the relays through the Peco PL-13 switch that's driven by the motor.  This power is cascaded so that in Normal/Passive mode, the switch sends the power to the next switch but in Reverse/Active mode, it send it to its own relay.
  3. The point control wires - these make the points change and will be familiar to anyone who uses powered solenoid point motors.  I know that Peco is old-school but they are robust and cheap - a useful combination when you need 40-odd just for the storage sidings!
  4. The wiring for the LEDs on the control panels.  Again, cascaded and driven by the relays so when all the points are in Normal/Passive mode, the LED lights for the continuous run.  If any point is Reversed/Active, the power if fed to the LED for that track.  One LED per point so 2 per storage track plus the main line - that's 36 wires into the control panel just for lights!
  5. What I call the "Links" wiring - on each storage track section, a wire from the live rail feeds the 12-inch "slow-down zone" via a 20 Ohm resistor and then the isolator section via a push-button on the control panel.  34 storage sections is another few miles of wire.
As of now (I have done about 30 hours in the shed this weekend!) frog polarities are done and tested, relay power is complete and tested but needs tidying up to avoid fouling the trains, point control wires are all in above the baseboard but until I construct a new control panel, I will not wire them back to the switches, I have only done the relay connections for the LEDs and will wait for the control panel before wiring them in, and finally, the Down line link wiring is in with all of the resistors where required - I have the up line still to do.

A major scare earlier when I wired the first "slow-down" zone only to find it didn't work!  I checked my maths (Ohms Law and all that) which suggested I should see a significant speed drop. Turned out one stray strand of the multi-strand wire had bridged the tag strips thus by-passing the resistor.  Once sorted, all was well although the older X04 powered Hornby engines were less affected - probably because they pull about 2Amps each and 20 Ohms makes no real difference to them.

I needed something newer to use as a test engine and Hey Ho...........



the postman delivered an Oxford Rail J27 - its been on pre-order at Hattons since Xmas 2019!!!!!!!

Haven't had a chance to do a full "review" of it yet but it runs really sweetly and you could see a marked slow down as it ran into the "zone" before hitting the isolator section and stopping.  I have another one of these with the late crest and two of the J26 sister engines on pre-order as well - if they are as good as this one, I will be a happy bunny.

Bashing on...........

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Goodness gracious me!!  What a storage area!  And a very fine job of it all too.  This is going to be amazing.
Michael

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Headmaster wrote: Goodness gracious me!!  What a storage area!  And a very fine job of it all too.  This is going to be amazing.
Michael

Its the stuff of dreams! I get by with three tracks per direction! I would have to buy more stock to support the yards above!

Looking great Barry.

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I think the "W"s have it - Alan and Colin with their respective "wow" comments.  What space, what storage and what straight lines ...............WOW ! :thumbs

What centre spacing have you allowed between your storage tracks ?  Are you able to access a single wagon/carriage on the middle track ?  Sure as eggs is eggs, that's where one will decide to jump the rails ...............

Having studied those fabulous sidings, I was slightly taken aback by your test wiring Barry - I had expected "aerospace" type neatness, each carefully labelled with one of those "box" labels of yore .......... :hmm

I note that you too have addressed the "bird's nest" situation and plan to build future ones in situ.  Everything else is so neat, the wiring really should follow suit. :thumbs

I've been thinking about one of those Oxford Rail J27's for Maxmill so would be very interested in your review.  The current Maxmill demands much smaller locos that the previous version could handle but small transition BR Eastern Region locos seem unpopular with the RTR market.  On the same vein, what make is the J52 - she looks nice. :thumbs


 

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Alas, despite my best efforts, the connection of a board containing 13 tag-strips, a relay with 6 pins, a point motor with 3 terminals and a point motor switch with 3 terminals did not connect together with aerospace-standard wiring neatness :cry:

The solution would have been to set out the tag strip in the same shape as the various switches and pins or to use much longer wires for each connection.  Neither happened, either in the interests of cost or space.  Some of the control boards are actually glued to the "backscene" in the absence of real estate beside the point.

The loop tracks are at 1 1/4 inch centres - this is the minimum allowed using code 75 small radius pointwork.  Extensive testing with outside cylinder engines prove that its enough.  The tracks were laid dead straight and centres checked every couple of feet to avoid issues, including derailments.  My track laying is good enough (he says, touching wood, crossing his fingers and hopping on one leg all at the same time) to avoid derailment and the stock is all veteran of the old layout where errant vehicles were sorted or withdrawn from traffic.  The last "dodgy" vehicle, the old Triang Weltrol & crane from the Engineers train has just had a new chassis, donated from a more modern version of the same wagon - I married the old repainted crane with the new Hornby version chassis.

The J52 is actually the very old Hornby engine, weathered and detailed with a crew.  The body sits about 2 or 3mm too high on the chassis and when compared with a scale drawing, the whole thing is a bit "off" but I guess Hornby simply made it fit whatever chassis they had at the time (probably the Jinty one).  The engine doesn't have a job on the new layout - it is a spare engine that I can use when younger visitors want to run something, but it goes pretty well all the same.  Next to a more modern offering, like the J27, its pretty crude.

The J27 certainly looks the part although I haven't had a chance to refer to my magazines yet to find a scale drawing for reference.  Oxford Rail have had issues in the past with some of their offerings - pulling power being one concern - so I will get this one down to the club test-track, get it run in and then see what she can do.  I will happily provide a report in due course.  The J26's were earlier versions of the same engine (themselves modified versions of the J25) so they are extremely similar.  I expect Oxford will use the same chassis and fit different bodies - there were subtle differences to boiler dimensions, firebox sizes etc.  These will be my first Oxford Rail engines and they are about £20 cheaper than a similar offering from Bachmann - it will interesting to see if that £20 saving has compromised performance.

Barry

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Poistscript:

I need to find the Railway Modeller for August 2015 for a scale drawing - in a box somewhere in the pile and unattainable at present.

But,

reference to the LNER Locomotives website dimensions suggests that the wheelbase of the model locomotive is slightly too short, the tender is right and the overall length is too big.  This latter "error" is probably more to do with the distance between engine and tender and not reflective of Oxford Rail's dimensions on the actual individual pieces.

From the photos available on t'web, Oxford have captured the nature and look of these engines well so I, for one, will not be jumping up and down about a few inches short on the wheelbase (assuming that the LNER Locomotives website and my eyesight are both accurate).  At the end of the day, if I was that fussy, I would be modelling P4 :shock:

Barry

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If I was that fussy, I wouldn't be modelling at all!
A note to myself, never, ever, ever show my wiring to Peter!  Yours is a delight compared to my chaos.

Michael

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:mutley :mutley :mutley

You'll note you've only ever seen very tight, carefully cropped selections of my wiring............

I just thought, having followed his shed build and now seeing his immaculate sidings and pointwork, nobody could be that perfect and now I know, like the rest of us, he does have an Achilles heel - aerospace wiring !

Welcome to the human race Barry .......... :cheers :mutley


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  :mutley :mutley

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:mutley :mutley :mutley

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"2 wires to the track"

This photo showed up the uneven sidings - I had not pinned them down!!  The usefulness of taking pictures - they show up your shortcomings and omissions!!

Bashing on.......

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Gosh !  :shock:

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Tease out some synthetic pillow stuffing, dye it green, drape it artistically over that wiring on the left, spay with hair spray, sprinkle with a couple of different colours of green scatter and you will have a row of line side trees!
Might make trouble shooting the wiring a bit tricky though!

:lol:

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An opportunity to sit and reflect this morning.  I have been bemoaning the, apparent, slow progress but my diary tells me that I only started tracklaying 3 weeks ago!  The main storage loops are in and there is good progress on the wiring.  That would have been quicker if I had not wildy miscalculated my requirements in the wire department!!

I'm up to about 1600 metres of wire :shock: :shock:

There are, as I have said, 5 wiring circuits to instal and, so far, the frog polarities are done, the relay power and cascades are done and tested, the LED cascade was finished last night and tested (only 1 pair of wires reversed out of 32 pairs), the point motor wiring is over half done and the "links" circuit for the slow-down and isolator sections is nearly there (more wire needed).  I estimate that, by this time next week, all of these circuits will be done and then I get 4 days of "shed time" as Mrs M heads South for a catch-up with old work colleagues. 

I am hoping that 4 days will allow me to paint the inside of the shed, set out and lay Middle Junction and make a start on the central peninsular baseboard that will carry Trinity Square and the branch.  I don't need to lay those lines just yet but the alignment of the main line for Yarslow can be determined by Middle Junction.  Also, the peninsular boards will have storage space underneath that clears a lot of stuff out from under my feet.  That includes the heavy, immovable pile of boxes containing my magazines - getting them out onto shelves will be an hour well spent to re-gain my "resource library".

I am not setting myself targets and goals but I am anticipating quicker progress around the main circuit and so the plan of getting something running on the main line by the end of the year is looking easily within reach.  In fact, by then, I anticipate having all of the Yarslow track laid and wired.

Bashing on........

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The wire suppliers must love you Barry!  :shock:

Regarding your magazine "resources", have you indexed them ?  When we moved to France, I brought half a lorry load of similar "resources".  

When we moved from that house to what had been our letting house,  most of the unopened boxes of "resources" went in the skip.  They'd been "in store" for 17 years !

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My magazines are fully indexed - they start from Janaury 1972 when, as a young lad, I bought my first edition after having been "good" at the dentists!!!  God Bless my Mum - I wonder if she realised what she had started.........

Barry

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I once had every Railway Modeller from November 1972 (I think - it had a large N gauge layout as Railway of the Month) through to the early 1990's. Then I watched a film as part of my CPD requirements which dealt with the accumulation of masses of magazines and other paperwork (I think Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders were in it, but it was a serious piece and not a comic sketch) - the upshot of the film was to get rid of all redundant paperwork and cut out the articles in which you are interested and dump the rest of the magazines, thus freeing up office space and making work more efficient. A colleague recommended doing this with my collection when I mentioned how big it was getting.......

Worst mistake I ever made, butchering all those magazines - I filed the "interesting" articles in ring binders in clear plastic wallets and never looked at them again. Too difficult, but looking through a bound magazine is much easier and interesting - and you never know what articles are going to become interesting to you.

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I share your pain!

I did have quite a collection of MRJ's, Model Railway Constructor, British Model Railways and a whole load of other odds and ends bought for car/plane/train journeys.  I cut those up into bits for a scrap book and discarded everything I didn't want.  Somehow, I couldn't bring myself to do the same with the RM's.

I don't hoard anything and, in fact, keep very lightweight "bits" boxes of railway stuff.  Quite where my attachment to the RM comes from, I don't know.

Barry

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Late in the day today, the postie delivered a large box in which was one of these....



Its the Bachmann Scenecraft NER loco shed which I wanted for Trinity Square.  I know that I could have had a go at building one and that this costs the same as a decent unchipped loco but it's perfect for what I want and I am keen to fight the battles I know I can win.  Scratchbuilding something on this scale to get this outcome is not a fight I back myself to win.

[slopes off in shame........ :oops:]


Sloping off..............

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That looks the part to me. Bachmann make some great little models. 

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The various thoughts here about lost and hard to access archives and treasures highlight one of the great advances of our era. Digital access and storage.

In researching my new project, the resources I've had access to just a mouse click way are so diverse and many I can't imagine how I'd have managed as a very late newcomer to the hobby. To cite a few examples that I've already referenced over on my topic.

I was looking for inspiration and the thinking behind the design of various well known layouts. First a much loved former YMRC member had posted his own "how to" website. When that proved a bit thin on the details about Ops I went further, finding (on line) a reference to an article in RM and amazingly one for sale. Before committing, I searched further and to my delight found that some relevant bits and much more had been carefully stored away in the Gallery on here, just waiting for me!

John Ahern's classic layout is well documented by some online reprints of very old Railway mags, Then videos of a more modern BTW setting operating in a Show and on a visit to Pendon, both great help.

Imagine being able to find even a fraction of such treasure buried away in dusty old boxes of mags. Besides, if they were here it'd be my luck for termites to have digested them first.  

Last edited on Fri Jul 30th, 2021 12:54 am by Colin W

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:

"2 wires to the track"

This photo showed up the uneven sidings - I had not pinned them down!!  The usefulness of taking pictures - they show up your shortcomings and omissions!!

Bashing on.......

Apologies, OT :off topic but we need a bit of levity in these times.




When Barry turns on the power, this comes to mind.
My kids favorite, watched every Christmas.





Last edited on Fri Jul 30th, 2021 12:36 am by Colin W

Barry Miltenburg
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:mutley :mutley
In fact, because of the cascading principle, only 4 relays and 4 LEDs maximum will be active at any one time so the current draw will not dim the lights all over Merseyside!!

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Having made a rick of the old control panel by putting the triple isolator sections on the wrong track (schoolboy error), I have now re-made the main line loops storage panel and this is the mock-up.  The switches, LEDs and push buttons are in and the wooden numerals glued down but not the letters.  I am not keen on the flamingo pink put this is only colour I have.  Some of the push-buttons need a tweak to get them to line up better.

The letters here are plastic and denote "Main Line" in red/pink for the up line and blue for the down as per the wiring convention.    The UP and DOWN letters are a pathetic shade of pink but they will do.  I bought these letters ages ago from a craft shop.  The red numerals came from The Works - a remainder bookshop outlet we have in the UK and always a good source of cheap crafty stuff like letters, numbers and similar stuff.  Its always worth a look in if you are passing.  The wooden numerals are 1mm thick and probably laser cut.  The bag contains about 100 numbers and they cost £2.  Bargain!!

The blobs are actually 5mm 12v green LEDs which I am running from a 6v supply.  The "X" relates to the crossover giving access from the TSQ approach line to the down main.  The crossover is controlled by the second storage panel (see below) but a warning that this crossover is set to "reverse" appears on this loops panel - a red LED as an extra warning.

The storage sidings will have a second panel for the loco storage and Trinity Square sidings with a separate panel-mounted twin Gaugemaster controller.  I will tackle this when the loco/TSQ sidings are laid but this is likely to be after I get the main line done.

I am now facing my first mental challenge thrown up by the size/complexity of this layout.  The storage sidings main line loops panel pictured above will be connected to the wiring from the storage area - 176 wires in all to power points, LEDs and isolator sections.  If I am to have a mimic panel at my work bench (one of the things on my "want" list for the layout), then I need to replicate this panel.  The physical panel is easy enough but 176 wires running about 5 metres around the shed equals another 880 metres of wire.  I have managed to find 1000 metres in two reels of weird colours on eBay for £90 - surplus from some other mega project.  Leaving the wiring convention aside, this is a weeks work but I am wondering if it's worth it.  Without this panel, I just have to walk around the peninsular and press a few buttons to change trains.  On the other hand, sitting at the bench working and having trains "on tap" so to speak is a big attraction!  I am going to stew on for a couple of days.

Last night I laid the exit tracks at both ends of the storage sidings - those at the Up end connect to Middle Junction which is my next project.  Wiring up 4 sets of points, 2 crossings and 3 single slips - all with live frogs and potentially connected to 3 different controllers.  What could possibly go wrong?

Bashing on..........

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Hi Barry,I have used multi core cable in the past for similar, not sure if telephone or alarm and instead of routing around at baseboard height an overhead route shortened the distance over a door frame in my case.
I guess the small section of wire would be sufficient for voltage, currents and distance involved for the panel indicator LED’s but not points and isolation sections unless relays used.

Barry T

Last edited on Tue Aug 3rd, 2021 07:23 am by Barry Taylor

Barry Miltenburg
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Hi Barry - I am keeping the convention of using 16/0.2mm wire and having found a suitable supply, will build the duplicate panel in due course.

In the meantime.........



...Middle Junction has been laid, wired, tested and connected to the storage area.  Trains can now run down one side and almost across one end of the shed.  The live-frog crossing in the foreground provoked much thought.  I was minded to drive the changes in polarity by relays switched by the point motors on either side but it is possible, with the point motor pairings I have, to set up a conflicting move across the Down line and thus I would have had to create an interlocking design to avoid this.  In the end, I simply isolated it from all the trackwork around it and will use a 4-pole switch to set the polarity of the stock rails and crossing rails.  The two options are (a) Main Down line or (b) cross to Trinity Square.  The switch works just fine!!

I laid the track and installed the Seep point motors before I screwed the baseboard down.  That made it much easier to work on.  Although other baseboard pieces are bigger than this one, I might carry on the track laying for Yarslow in the same way.

The next job is to plan, lay out and draw the tracks on the Yarslow boards, planning the approach curves at the branch end and concentrating on getting the 3-degree angle of slant right.  That slant allows the platforms to sit at the back of the baseboard nearest the door but brings the tracks forward to make room for the branch as Middle Junction is approached.  I reckon getting Yarslow right is going to take a "fair few coats of looking at" :lol: :lol:.

If I get bored, the new control panel is ready for installation so I can start to connect the 176 wires to it...



Bashing on.......

Last edited on Fri Aug 6th, 2021 09:41 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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P.S.  I thought that, having scored a solid D-minus for neatness of wiring during my last post, I ought to pull my socks up.

Here is the SEEP point motor wiring underneath Middle Junction.



The tag strip is hot-glued down.  Note the cross-hairs drawn around the 7mm baseboard hole through which the operating rod passes.  The cross-hairs make fixing the motor unit a piece of cake - especially when you can turn the baseboard over like this!!

Barry

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That looks much better Barry ................ :lol: :pathead

A couple of questions/comments if I may -  those cross-hairs are certainly an excellent aid in lining SEEPs up - they can often be tricky and there's not much room for error if they're to work well.   My question is, how do you draw them accurately on one side of the boards when the track is out of sight on the other side ................. ?  The operating rod has to be dead centre and the motor mounted at right angles to the track.  I found doing that extremely difficult when I couldn't see the track.  I ended up drilling small holes through the baseboard to mark the exact longitudinal position of the point.  I have a metal jig to mark the exact  position of the motor once I have that first longitudinal line drawn  It was getting that first line spot on that caused problems .................... :hmm

Second comment - initially, I too used tag strip but quickly discovered that, if I needed to switch the frog polarity when wiring it all up, it was far easier to use choc blocks as the terminal - all one had to do to change polarity was swap 2 wires over.  Soldered joints don't easily permit that ....................  Just a thought before you solder hundreds of them ........... :cool wink

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Of course you could always use DCCconcepts Alpha system - only two wires to serve all solenoids etc.

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Hi Peter

I, like you, drill 2 small holes to mark the ends of the tie bar and join the dots to give the alignment.  The hole for the operating rod is a little trickier and best done first;
  1. get the point in the right position - use a single pin if neccesary to hold it still
  2. centre the blades
  3. using a small drill, drill through the hole in the centre of the tie bar to give the centre of the operating rod hole
  4. drill a 7mm hole for the operating rod.
I use an archimedes drill for step 3 above rather than the Dremmel which is difficult to control one-handed whilst trying to hold the point and blades still!!

I have used choc blocks in the past but suffered failures either when using (soft) copper wire or when tightening down the screw too enthusiastically.  I decided to go tag-strip this time after experimenting on a small layout and finding a better success rate.  I also find it easier to connect multiple wires together using tag-strip or to create a "spur" by cutting the wire and inserting a tag.  No right or wrong answer of course.

Sol - I'm too old in the tooth for all such modern ideas!!  Give me a pot of Fluxite and several hundred feet of wire and I'm happy :lol: :lol:

Barry

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As I continue to wire up Middle Junction and the storage sidings area, I am beginning to realise that I need to be tuned in to the Cab Control Master Panel and the various sections/controllers that will be concentrated there.

I have produced a Sectional Represenation map of the layout...



...showing that there are 14 sections - TSQ goods and TSQ loco are one section split into 2 so the operator can select which of the two he/she is going to work.  There is only one controller at TSQ as its really a quiet station.

The main lines are split into 3 so that, for example, a train can arrive in the down platform loop whilst another departs from the main line platrform.

The controllers are located at;
  1. Double at Yarslow for the main lines
  2. Single at Yarslow for the yard
  3. Single at Yarslow for the PW yard (its 13 feet from the yard controller!!)
  4. Double in the Storage area loops for main line running
  5. Single in the Storage area for TSQ storage and the loco yard
  6. Single on the branch (centrally located for both stations)
  7. Single at TSQ covering the whole station
That's 9 controllers in all so I reckon I need single pole, 10-way rotary switches in the Master Panel.  Unfortunately, these are rare and therefore expensive,  Its cheaper to get 12-way (less than £5 each).  That gives me a few spares so I can add extra controllers later - perhaps a second one at TSQ or on the branch???  The number of switches is driven by the number of sections.  I have also assumed that every controller could, if required, control any section of the layout.  I began to consider restricting this but if you consider the passage of a train from, say, TSQ round to the PW sidings, unlikely though it sounds, the PW controller would need to control TSQ, Down main C, B (for the crossing at MJ) and A and its own section.  I realised that restricting access could also lead to restricting flexibility so all sections are available to all controllers.

This all pales somewhat when I am operating the layout on my own.  The controllers and the position of them becomes a matter of convenience.  What I wanted was the ability to have a few people round to play trains and not find that everyone has to gather round one control panel to operate every train!

Incidentally, whilst finding Gaugemaster controllers on eBay is a simple affair - they can be had quite cheaply - the 16-volt 800mA transformers required to run them are getting more and more expensive.  I need one transformer for each controller so that's 9 of those as well.  I have tried running a double panel from one transformer but prefer not to.  I do have some of the old "open chassis" 230-volt to 16-volt transformers but even in a protective housing, they are all getting too old to trust :shock: :shock:

Bashing on............

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Very helpful tips there Barry, which i will definitely use when I get to my main point laying section of track.
Michael

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Hi Michael
My one big learn was accessibility. I had to fit one Seep into the (fixed down) storage sidings board and this took me as long as it did to fit 3 or 4 of them into the board I could invert

Barry

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All mine were fitted in situ Barry - hence my comments about how difficult it can be ........

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Petermac wrote: All mine were fitted in situ Barry - hence my comments about how difficult it can be ........

:cry: :cry: :cry:  That is something I would not want to do for a large number of motors - my back wouldn't let me!

Barry

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Today, the Yarslow Model Railway channel on YouTube celebrated its 500th subscriber.  I'm rather chuffed that 500 people are interested in what I'm doing although I am under no illusions that this number is paltry compared with the million or so that follow Luke Towan :shock: :shock:

Being in the public gaze brings "comments" of course.  On here, all are constructive if, at times, critical but that's OK because the criticism is meant to be helpful and if I'm doing something wrong or stupid, amongst us, someone will find a suitable way of pointing it out.

Not so in YouTubeLand.  One comment simply read "Your wiring is an absolute mess..".  Harsh, if true.  In fact I had to agree based both on comments received on here and my own review of the situation following the same!!  Truth is, I knew it wasn't tidy but was trying to ignore it.  When someone else mentions it, you know it's time to do something about it.

What gets me most is that comments from you good folk are valued as you have experience, proven track-records etc and have a way of saying things that does not offend.  The commenter on YouTube has a "channel" with no content and may not even by a modeller.  I have thanked him for his comment and admitted that I had already done something about it.  What I really wanted to say was unprintable and would have got the Yarslow channel taken down..................!!!!!!

Bashing on.......

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Unfortunately Barry todays society is riddled with people who have nothing to do but have found that technology has given them a way to vent their feelings however misguided we may think.
Sometimes I fear for the human race but thats something over which I have no control.

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: Today, the Yarslow Model Railway channel on YouTube celebrated its 500th subscriber.  I'm rather chuffed that 500 people are interested in what I'm doing although I am under no illusions that this number is paltry compared with the million or so that follow Luke Towan :shock: :shock:

Being in the public gaze brings "comments" of course.  On here, all are constructive if, at times, critical but that's OK because the criticism is meant to be helpful and if I'm doing something wrong or stupid, amongst us, someone will find a suitable way of pointing it out.

Not so in YouTubeLand.  One comment simply read "Your wiring is an absolute mess..".  Harsh, if true.  In fact I had to agree based both on comments received on here and my own review of the situation following the same!!  Truth is, I knew it wasn't tidy but was trying to ignore it.  When someone else mentions it, you know it's time to do something about it.

What gets me most is that comments from you good folk are valued as you have experience, proven track-records etc and have a way of saying things that does not offend.  The commenter on YouTube has a "channel" with no content and may not even by a modeller.  I have thanked him for his comment and admitted that I had already done something about it.  What I really wanted to say was unprintable and would have got the Yarslow channel taken down..................!!!!!!

Bashing on.......

Hi Barry,


On a smaller scale perhaps, but this phenomenon seems to me like nothing more than a new twist on a age old human condition. The successful and popular becoming the focus of unwanted attention is nothing new but modern channels just make it that much easier to be disrespectful or much worse.

Authorities finally seem to be focusing on the most egregious of on-line behaviour, COVID disinformation etc but I doubt it'll filter down to Yarslow denigration any time soon.


As a new Australian some 45 years ago I was amazed when I first came across "The Tall Poppy Syndrome" here and had it explained. I was co-supervising a PhD and the candidate put forward for the position came over as not the sharpest. A bit of a larrakin and likely to prefer a night on the slops (another quaint bit of Strine) to any serious research.

It was quietly explained that the guy was brilliant and was going to get a First in his Honours year but to be cast as such amongst his undergrad peers would have been social suicide. He turned out to be the best researcher I ever had working for me by a very long way. We didn't have any social media back then, just raw human nature at work!
 






Last edited on Sat Aug 14th, 2021 12:06 am by Colin W

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Getting back to modelling.......

I have now installed the power supplies for (l-r) Controller 1 for the storage sidings, Controller 2 for the storage sidings, 16v AC for the CDU driving the storage siding points, 9v DC supply for the control panel LEDs and 12v DC supply for the relays.  Later, on the far right, I added another 16v AC transformer/plug for the CDU driving the points at Middle Junction and the branch/Trinity Square.

The control panel for Middle Junction is wired and working with a 4-pole single-throw switch controlling the polarity issues of the live frog diamond crossing.  This and the live frog single slips have been a bit of a head scratcher but I got there and it works :Happy.

Today, I spent a long time measuring and planning the start of Yarslow.  I began with the link to Middle Junction, carefully setting out the Down line approach curve with its 42/60 inch transition radii.  The up line will be set up against this.  The 2 points giving an exit from the yard loop out onto the down line have been laid and the SEEP point motors fitted whilst the board is not fixed down.  This board has also been cut to provide an embankment for the branch gradient.  The loco shed and coal siding will remain level in the corner.  Tomorrow I hope to be able to set out the 3 branch points in this location and will then play around with the supports for the gradient - I will adopt an "open frame" approach to this part of the branch and put risers under the track bed.  Longitudinal supports will stop the track bed from sagging between risers.

Bashing on.........

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Good progress over the last couple of days.  Main lines now laid from Middle Junction round to the physical junction with the branch.  The branch gradient is laid but only as far as the window for now.  The upper picture also shows the pointwork from the yard loop which features on this first board.  Straight track is straight, courtesy of plenty of measuring, use of the Tracksetta gauges and copious use of a small mirror - checking for kinks every time a pin is inserted.  It takes a long time to lay track this way but I am pleased with the outcome.

All points are wired up and frog polarity switches wired through the SEEP PM-1 switches.  Power feeds are in but nothing is wired back to panels yet - that's tomorrow's job.  If I can start to get the Master Cab Control Panel in place, then I can add those feeds that are already connected at the track end and, with a few test wires, get some trains running.

The branch gradient worked out at 1 in 44 but it looks OK in this space and I like the way the line continues to rise whilst the loco shed in the corner stays flat - it sort of "nestles" in behind the curve.

Bashing on........

Last edited on Mon Aug 23rd, 2021 04:31 pm by Barry Miltenburg

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Hi Barry,You really are progressing this project at some pace.

I am sure you have thought about it and have a solution in mind so I will just ask about window access to open and close with middle junction and branch passing in front?

I know I have mentioned this before and you have reasons for not being keen but I would certainly weigh up the advantages of the Highmarsh branch and that section of the layout being positioned above and at the front of storage road boards in modular form to enable access.
Trinity Square board could then be angled towards cassette siding so that it’s far left back corner ends up where traverser is now.
You would be able to see Highmarsh from main control panel, reduce incline and have more room between boards at control panel positions.

Just a thought whilst easily do-able but don’t let me persuade you away from your preference.
Looking forward to final detailing and scenery taking shape.👍

Regards
Barry T

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Hi Barry - thanks for your thoughts.

The window is not an issue as I am able to reach across from the end of the aisle between the storage area and Trinity Square.

The positioning of the various elements of the layout have been the subject of much thought, debate, change and head-scratching (not always in that order!).  I am happy with the general arrangement, knowing that there are compromises - I would prefer slightly larger walkways but the "post-planning permission" design meant that I would have to give up or severely shrink the central peninsular to get that.  Being a Meglomaniac, that was not an option so it's fewer choccy biscuits I'm afraid.  I am reminded of a phrase made by Dr Robert Hendry in his book about his O gauge empire in the loft; "My layout is like a British WW2 tank - designed for 5 but comfortable holds 3" :lol: :lol:

I managed to strain something yesterday so a quiet day today gives me a chance to plan the Yarslow Control panel (starting with a Signal Box Diagram) and the Master Cab Control Panel.  The latter will allow me to start connecting the track feeds to something and then jerry-rig a controller to see if I can get an engine from the door to the junction - that's 3/4 of a circuit :doublethumb.  Sounds straightforward - what could possible go wrong..............

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Good to hear window access is not a problem as I had visions of you cutting an access hole in the baseboard to reach through from underneath and blindly feeling for the handle 🤯.The other thing that comes to mind is have you got enough room to turn/ store cassettes or will they always be used pointing in the same direction.
I have very limited room and have solved by making a cantilevered rest from a wall which supports one end of the cassette  whilst the other end that I hold is passed from one hand to the other, turning a 48” long cassette and keeping it level is nigh impossible just hand to hand.
Hope the light duties today do the trick and you are back in the fast lane tomorrow.
Regards
Barry T

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Wot - no wires !! :mutley

I envy you your straight as an arrow trackwork Barry - mine ought to have been like that, unfortunately, I should have gone to Specsavers ............... :hmm   However, it doesn't really matter that much as it will be hidden by the upper level. ;-)

I can't wait to see some trains snaking over that pointwork - it looks great. :thumbs  I do however, have to ask why you used a single slip rather than 2 doubles ?  I've never really understood why they used singles - other than the cost.  Surely, they dramatically reduce the options. :roll:

Actually, looking again, I think it's a diamond crossing centre left - I thought it was a slip ............ :oops:



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Hi Peter - life is simpler without wires!!

It took me all day to get 8 bits of track dead straight but I think it was worth the effort.

Middle Junction is a complex place and certainly not somewhere the Board of Trade would ever be welcome to inspect for traffic!  The basic requirement is to keep the entry/exit for Trinity Square clear from the main line when it's trains are running into and out of storage.  The angle of the main lines facilitate that and using single slips, the whole formation is shortened - important  to allow the curves for Trinity Square to start as soon as possible.  There is no need for double slips as this would not allow the junction to work as required.  Luckily, this area is "off scene" so I can get away with facing slips on the running lines.

Ironically, although the slips are all trailing on the visible main line section, the formation of the junction using 2 such units would be highly criticised by the BoT - junctions should be formed by 2 independent diverging tracks that can join after the junction.  Trailing slips are allowed on running lines but I am stretching regulations here to save a bit of space and to create something that is asthetically pretty!  Double slips on a running line (outside of station limits at a terminus) is a no-no as far as I am aware.

Someone commented on my YouTube channel that mine was one of the few layouts to use catch points and whilst I think this is incorrect (amongst groups like ourselves who build layouts not train sets), I do try to make the thing as prototypical as possible.  Off-scene, anything goes of course!!

Barry

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Hi Barry,
Just caught up with your posts and videos. Great work - do you have a time frame in mind for when the track work will all be in place?
regards
Dave

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Hi Dave

I originally thought that I could get something running by Xmas but as time goes on, I have revised my thinking.  Today, I laid the point work between the junction and the platforms and now expect, by the end of September to be able to join up the main lines.  The hardest part is going to be laying out the curved platforms and the "back road" whilst making sure that it all joins up properly before it gets back to the crossovers in front of the PW Yard.

I have jerry-rigged the track feeds and have had something running from the door around to the junction on the Down line.  Hopefully, in a week or so, I will be able to repeat that on the Up line.  It is certainly quicker to lay the points and fit the SEEP motors before I fix the board to the support frame.  Being able to turn it over "on the bench" is a wonderful luxury.  My bench is actually 2 plastic saw-horses with a blanket draped over to protect the track when the board is upside down.

Once the main circuit and Yarslow tracks are laid and wired, I will turn my attention to the peninsular - starting with the branch by extending the current gradient over Middle Junction.  The track plan for the two branch stations change daily!  Today, as I laid out the yard at Yarslow, I swapped a few of the points out of the branch pile - a Y point swapped for a L/H etc.  I also found a knackered medium radius point rescued from the old layout but, clearly, well past it's sell-by date.  I took the opportunity to order a couple of large radius replacements.

Bashing on........

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I am amazed how fast you are progressing.
I am particularly impressed with the precision of your storage sidings. Now every time I go down to the Train room I glance at my sidings and realise what a c**p job I made of them 13 years ago :oops: :oops:


Looking forward to seeing the trains running!

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Barry Miltenburg wrote:



Your wiring is a mess……..:mutley

I agree, I don’t think I’ve ever seen an unhelpful or non-complementary message on here. Ignore it and carry on with the great work you are doing. It is really coming on nicely. 

TeaselBay
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I should add, I don’t plan on ever taking a photo of the wires under Teasel! Haha

Barry Miltenburg
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Chris - if you think the stuff above the baseboard is untidy........... :lol: :lol:

(Note to self - don't submit or use photos that include anything work-in-progress!!  Even the plugs in the corner are neater than they looked in this picture.)

Barry

TeaselBay
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Haha. The camera is also harsh as well. You can always notice more in a photo after you’ve taken it than when you set up the photo. 
Don’t worry about the wiring, keep up the great work! 

Barry Miltenburg
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HELP!

I cannot find out how to view the gallery of another member.

Can someone pleases tell me what buttons to press?

Many thanks

Barry

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I'm not sure you can view other members galleries Barry.  I could of course, be wrong but those "in the know" seem to have gone AWOL for the time being ................ :hmm

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Barry Miltenburg wrote: HELP!

I cannot find out how to view the gallery of another member.

Can someone pleases tell me what buttons to press?

Many thanks

Barry


Barry,on both Home & Recent pages, on the RHS side of the main photo is Photo gallery & all members are listed there;  for instance  click on S  & all members whose member name starts with S appears

Longchap
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Barry Miltenburg wrote: HELP!

I cannot find out how to view the gallery of another member.

Can someone pleases tell me what buttons to press?

Many thanks

Barry
You can also click on the 'view photos in Gallery' option under the member's avatar, to the left side of any of their posts.

Bill

Last edited on Sat Sep 4th, 2021 12:13 pm by Longchap

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:oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops:

You live and learn ........................ :cheers

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Thanks chaps!!

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Having taken a bit of stick for my wiring, I thought I had better sort myself out.  Therefore, I have re-wired the storage area control panel - removing the tag-strip and making end-on soldered connections for the wires.  Now that it has been finished and tested, I didn't really need to have the tag anyway.  Hopefully, the couple of days spent will be appreciated by the complainants (via my YouTube video channel comments as mentioned previously).  The funny thing is, I think it works better without the tag-strip.  Perhaps I had a few dodgy soldered joints?



This is what came out of the back of the panel once it had been rewired.  You can see why its neater!!



This is how far the layout has got.  The two tracks on the right are the up and down main lines - the Yarslow platform starts at the end of the short brake van siding in the middle of the picture.  This is all wired so an engine can run from here, right round into storage.  Platforms 2/3 between the main lines and the loop will be about 6 inches wide here, giving that spacious look so common on interchange stations.  The storage loops are also complete now that the right colour wire has arrived.  The slow-down zones and isolator sections are all wired and tested.



All of the track feeds put in so far now congregate at this tag-strip, situated inside the approach curve to Trinity Square.  There are 14 sections in all.  By connecting the controller to this tag-strip using test leads, I can make sure the track is OK and the frogs are wired correctly.  The face of the Master Cab Control Panel is being made for me by a local graphic design company.  I have given them the dimensions and layout of the switches and knobs and they will print that design onto a sheet of 3mm metal.  I drill out the holes and each switch will then have its own legend.  It is going to cost about the same as a Mk I coach - I thought that was a bargain considering the importance of this panel for the layout.

Bashing on..........

Last edited on Tue Sep 7th, 2021 11:43 am by Barry Miltenburg

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I mentioned that Oxford Rail had finally released their J27 and that I had received the first of the two I had ordered.  This week, the other one turned up.  They are both very good runners although the tenders are extremely light and will need some weight under the real coal load when its added.  Magazine reviews expressed concerns about the fall-plate, suggesting that it interfered with the loco as it went into corners.  My sharpest radius is 24 inches and I have not had any problems.

The third engine is a Hornby Q6 0-8-0.  I have one of these already and although its a noisy runner, it would have pulled the old shed down if required!!  This latest one is a poor runner.  I have oiled it round and will take it to the club tonight for a good run on our test track which, luckily, is the same size as my shed.  Half an hour there should sort it out hopefully.

I am still waiting for two J26's from Oxford Rail - promised Xmas 2019 and now due for delivery later this year or Q1 2022.  Hattons are also having issues with their Genesis coaches - my ex-GNR full brake is now due 2022 as well.  I cannot get excited about these delays.  After all, if the worst thing I suffer from is a delayed engine or two after all that has gone on during the past 18 months, I am truly a lucky boy...........

Barry Miltenburg
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To complete this trilogy, a view from our back sitting-room into the embyonic garden showing how the shed is beginning to melt into the background.  Lawns, shrubs and patio are all the preserve of Mrs M who has had the landscapers hard at it!!  The smaller "garage" in front of my empire is for the motor cycle, tools etc.  The back of the garden will be screened off to create a veg-plot.

Garden railways and outside extensions to Yarslow have been vetoed :cry:


TeaselBay
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Barry Miltenburg wrote:
Garden railways and outside extensions to Yarslow have been vetoed 

Hahaha, same here! 

Great update, it looks really neat now. Glad it has given you some performance improvements also.

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I can't imagine who would be rude enough to comment on untidy wiring Barry  :roll:  - this new setup looks amazing - it reminds me very much of the telephone junction boxes one sees scattered around built-up areas.  Very professional. :pathead


I wish I'd had your clean sheet to work with when I started Maxmill.  It was built rather piece-meal from ideas way to grand for the space I had at my disposal.  I also envy you your patience in getting things right before continuing.  My aim was to get something running as quickly as possible, then add to it .............

I pondered waiting for the OR Class 27 recently - I'd read some glowing reviews of it although, as you say, there had been adverse comments about the fall plate.  I'm awaiting delivery of their N7 to which I shall fit a sound chip.  I do hope it turns out to be a good purchase - returning stuff to UK isn't a simple operation anymore.



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Thats amazing Barry……..very impressive. I am so envious of your storage yard. I have many regrets about the design of Granby but undoubtedly one is inadequate space in my storage sidings. I am constantly trying to squeeze a quart into a pint pot :cry: 
I think you made the correct decision re wiring the storage panel. There is nothing more frustrating than being forced to trouble shoot wiring once the layout is up and running.

Best wishes

Barry Miltenburg
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Thanks guys.

I have had a few suggestions about reducing the storage area and adding more scenic sections but that is not going to fulfill my requirement for "Variety of Traffic" - the ability to show a range of trains covering the major types (A, B, C etc).

In each direction I wanted 2 x A class through trains, 2 or 3 x B class ordinary passengers, 2 x C class freights (oil, fish etc), 2 x E class fast freights, 2 x F class slow freights, 2 x H class positively pedestrian freights and 2 x J class minerals.  Thats 28 trains to start with.  Add in a couple of J class empties and specials like the Bolsters train (class H) and you soon end up with my 34 main line offerings.  On top of that I have the "specials" - engineering, Inspection saloon, "Boys" school train, Horse Box special, Pigeon special - occupying the cartridges.  Trinity Square needs 3 passenger trains, the "Coastal", a trip freight and a parcels.  The r