In A Bit Of Estate

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Bilco
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In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Fri Feb 05, 2016 7:59 pm

I have been giving much thought to the layout that I hope to run ‘Kaffie’ on one day. It will have to be an estate railway, a la Duffield and Eaton, so rather different to everything I’ve built since the 1970s!

As for the layout planning, I have come up with some basic principles, based on my experiences with Wood Bros and Watt’s. I shall go for a very simple, roundy-roundy trackplan, and only have one baseboard – no fiddle yard or hidden semicircle add-ons. The trauma of the early hours of MOMING’15 are still etched deep in my psyche – no joints allowed! On the other hand, the points on Watts’ actually worked quite well, so I shall probably allow one, or at most two, into the plan.

With these criteria in mind, I’ve started on the construction of the one and only baseboard. Last year I built a little layout for Grandson using a sheet of Celotex insulation foam from Wickes, so I am using the same material for this one. I put a 3mm hardboard base and sides on Grandson’s layout, and the same has been done with the new one, but I’m using two sheets of Celotex, one on top of t’other to give depth for landscape shaping. The board is a shade under 3’ x 2’ because of the size of the Celotex sheets, and I had to cut the sheets into several pieces to get the required size and shape out of the two. (The size is also the max I could sweet-talk mai laidy waif into allowing into the house.)

I followed the thread on the NGRM Forum about sticking this type of foam sheet http://ngrm-online.com/forums/index.php ... foamboard/ and did a bit of digging online, to come up with this:

Image

I got it through Amazon - it’s for use in the building industry. I had thought that I could do all the sticking with it, but the instructions (I broke the habit of a lifetime and read them first) say it isn’t recommended for sticking foam-to- foam, so I used it for the foam-to-hardboard sticking only. For the foam-to-foam I fall back on good old Copydex. The NGRM thread talked about the problem of most glues not drying between layers of foam – with Copydex you coat both surfaces to be joined, let them dry, and then place them together – the grab is instant and phenomenal.

This is the state of play at the moment:

Image

Image


I used lots of bamboo kebab skewers to link the various bits of foam sheet, and lock them into the hardboard surround – extra security for the joins, and to stop warpage. You can see the ones around the sides. Said sides are high because I want to fix the scenic break(s) to them – they’ll be cut away in the middle of the sides when the landscaping is done – the cutaway you see was done so that I could get at the top of the foam sheets to level them up – using bits was all very clever, but they didn’t end up level. A surform tool is great for this job, if rather messy – best done outside on a windy day - a lady at the other end of the village has been wondering where the strange yellow dust comes from.

I’ve stuck a sheet of 5mm black foamboard from the art shop on top – with Copydex – to act as the track base, and drawn out the provisional trackplan on it:

Image

I’m also working on the back-story, and I’ve got a title - ‘The Berger Hall Railway’, owned by Sir Macintosh Berger, a thus-far unknown customer of Sir Arthur Heywood. The railway will be set in 1900, and will involve all sorts of new concepts for me – trees! – grass! – clean loco and stock! – steam loco! No place for rust and ramshackle on this layout.

Hours of fun.
Bill

If at first you don't succeed, cheat.
Too soon old, too late smart.

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chris stockdale
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby chris stockdale » Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:18 pm

If the layout is half as good as all those plays on words it's going to be very good.

Onward!

Cheers,

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nevadablue » Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:47 am

You know I'm in the audience. :)
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:08 am

I'm here too! Lovely to be in at the start :D

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby docnjoj » Sat Feb 06, 2016 4:11 pm

Mee too! I am working (sort of) on a G9 layout around the same size. Mine is going at my usual "slow but unsure" pace.
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:06 pm

Things are progressing slowly at Berger Hall. I think I have the track-plan sorted now:

Image

Have I invented the 'guitar' layout? The idea is to have as little track dead straight and parallel to the edge at the sides - on the left is a gentle curve, at the bottom a short straight at an angle (though not much of one) and on the right I've used a Y point to introduce a bit of a wiggle and a siding - -there'll be a loco shed to hide the exit to the top - where there is just a little straight, which won't be in public view anyway, because ....


Image


... this is the backboard between three scenes - two long ones and a short one ...


Image


... one of the long ones - the sides of the base 'box' will be cut down to open up the view, while the corners are left to hold the backboard in place ...


Image


... and the short end scene in public view. The layout will be viewable from three sides, while the other short end will be a 'fiddle yard', though it won't amount to more than a bit of track hidden from view and the controls, such as they will be - one point switch and the controller socket.

I have the Y point, so I need to buy the rest of the track, stick it down, and cut the holes through the backboard to let the train through. That won't happen yet, though, as we're off to warmer climes for a short break - Madiera, where there isn't any railway, and they toboggan down the hills on wooden sleighs :shock:
Bill



If at first you don't succeed, cheat.

Too soon old, too late smart.



https://sites.google.com/site/myoldlayouts/

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nipissing » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:45 pm

Wonderful idea ! I like it. Can't wait for the next pics.
Have a nice day :D

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Thu Feb 18, 2016 9:14 pm

Lovely!

Have a great break; will look forward to your progress :D

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:05 pm

Since I got back from my hols things have been progressing with Berger Hall - I bought some Peco flexitrack and a Y point, and got the Steve Bennett rail bender out http://forum.gn15.info/viewtopic.php?t=347

It was quite labourious, pulling the rails out of the track base, bending them, then threading the base back on - in fact, the base broke into three pieces during the extraction on each of the three lengths I used, and that made getting it all back together rather easier. Next, I cut away the bits of track base that joined the sleepers together for two of the visible sections - the other will be buried in gravel - and spaced the sleepers in pairs to resemble (in a dark room) Heywood track. My researches said that the sleepers were 6" wide and spaced at 27" centres, so I marked the black base appropriately, then glued the track down with Woodland Scenics Scenic Glue - the method I used on the previous two layouts. Although the track was pre-bent I needed to use wooden cocktail sticks to hold the track to get the curves exactly right, but there wasn't too much tension left.

So now the track is all laid, and wired (not that there was much wiring required) .....

Image

The guitar shape is even clearer in this shot. The thick red curved line is the R/C aircraft control tubing for point control, running from the tie bar to the slide switch that switches the point frog polarity, while the slim green line is the wire between switch and frog.

The wiring was finished last night, and today I ran the loco over the track for the first time. I use a Gaugemaster Model HH as usual - did you know that, if you feed 16v AC through the output side of the controller the red light shines brightly, and there's a loud humming noise? Don't ask me how I know ....

After a quick rearrangement of wires, the loco ran very well, with admirable slow speed control ...

Image

... the loco on what will be a little bridge one day ...

Image

... isn't it funny how things look so much better in bright sunshine! The sleepers need a bit more work, but I think they'll look OK.

Gentlemen, we have a railway.
Bill



If at first you don't succeed, cheat.

Too soon old, too late smart.



https://sites.google.com/site/myoldlayouts/

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nevadablue » Sat Mar 26, 2016 6:35 pm

:D
Ken

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby chris stockdale » Sat Mar 26, 2016 8:58 pm

Or even

:D :D :D

Cheers,

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby DuffieldBank » Sun Mar 27, 2016 12:35 am

Bilco wrote:Things are progressing slowly at Berger Hall. I think I have the track-plan sorted now:

Image

Have I invented the 'guitar' layout? The idea is to have as little track dead straight and parallel to the edge at the sides - on the left is a gentle curve, at the bottom a short straight at an angle (though not much of one) and on the right I've used a Y point to introduce a bit of a wiggle and a siding - -there'll be a loco shed to hide the exit to the top - where there is just a little straight, which won't be in public view anyway, because ....



I am very much looking forward to seeing how this turns out. If your rolling stock is as good as your first loco, it will be quite impressive.

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nevadablue » Sun Mar 27, 2016 4:13 am

You know, a guitar layout might be fun. The neck would provide a nice long run and the body could have the 'guitar shaped' track. The center hole could hold a turn table. hmmm...
Ken

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby rue_d_etropal » Sun Mar 27, 2016 10:32 am

wasn't the pioneering 2mm scale (pre N) layout built in guitar cases or something similar. Suppose building something to shape of a guitar would mean it could easily be transported in a guitar case.
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Mar 29, 2016 4:18 pm

Today a little bit more progress with Berger Hall - I stuck short lengths of 1mm hexagonal rod to each pair of sleepers over the join to make what might just pass for Heywood sleepers in a dark room, with your eyes half-closed ...

Image

So, the first few done. At this point the plan to have the other half of the track buried in gravel is definitely becoming a good decision ...

Image

... and the task completed.

Hours of fun.
Last edited by Bilco on Tue Feb 07, 2017 7:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Bill



If at first you don't succeed, cheat.

Too soon old, too late smart.



https://sites.google.com/site/myoldlayouts/

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby DuffieldBank » Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:00 pm

Nevadablue wrote:You know, a guitar layout might be fun. The neck would provide a nice long run and the body could have the 'guitar shaped' track. The center hole could hold a turn table. hmmm...


Where's the "LIKE" button when you need it?!

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nevadablue » Tue Mar 29, 2016 10:13 pm

I know what you mean. Some people pooh-pooh the likes, but it makes it much easier to let a poster know you do enjoy what he posts, even if you don't have anything else to say. I suppose here we just do this...

:D
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby rue_d_etropal » Tue Mar 29, 2016 11:01 pm

I get 'like' type messages on my Facebook page. Ok, but it is nice to have a proper message as well.
Simon Dawson
(Simon D.),
Narrow gauge Francophile interested in 1m, 60cm,50cm , 40cm and smaller gauges . Build in scales from 1/6th to 1/24th. Also 1/32nd and 1/35th using 16.5mm track to represent 50cm and 60cm gauges.
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:21 pm

Having got 'Kaffie' and her driver squared away, I've been getting on with the layout on which they/he/she will be running. Now that track-laying is complete and tested, and the holes in the various wings of the backscene have been cut (and also tested) I've moved on to land-forming, using more of the yellow insulation board that forms the base of the whole thing ....

Image

This side only need the outer corners filling ....

Image

... while the bridge end has a bit more ...

Image

... and the other long side has a lot more. My original intention was to use forced-perspective to show 200 yards/metres distance and 100 feet of drop in the space of about 3 inches, but I realised that this was possibly a bit over-ambitious, so a lot of the centre will be carved away in due course. I've painted the back-scene with an amorphous blueish-whitish 'sky' to suggest scattered cirrus on a summer(ish) day.

Image

For completeness, this is the other end, which forms the rather grandiousely-named 'fiddle yard' - in reality just the short bit of track on its way from one side to the other, but I can change rolling stock there (when I get round to building it). The 'controls' are there, too - the socket for the Gaugemaster HH controller and the slide switch to move the point and change the frog's polarity. The cylinder in the angle at the back is one end of the supports for an over-head name board.

I shall do the shaping of the foam with a sharp blade and a small Surform tool. It will have to be carried out in the garden on a windy day, so that the bits vanish into the ether, and I can deny all knowledge when the people at the other end of the village come looking for the source of the yellow stuff all over their washing.

Hours of fun.
Bill



If at first you don't succeed, cheat.

Too soon old, too late smart.



https://sites.google.com/site/myoldlayouts/

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nipissing » Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:29 pm

Nice wortk. How did you make your backdrop ?
Have a nice day :D

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Wed Apr 27, 2016 6:11 pm

Hi Andre - the back-scene is made from very thin hardboard - it's used by picture framers as the back-board to the frame, and it comes in sheets that are just the right width for my purposes! I cut the board I bought into three 1 foot deep sheets and, with careful measurement and trials, fitted the two longer lengths into the baseboard - the corners are raised to hold the back-scene in place - then glued them together over the central 12 inches. Once the glue was dry I cut and fitted the short length, then glued that to the other two.

The bends did cause some wrinkling of the inside surface - I probably should have wetted the bend area first, as I did for Watts' back-scene -then I sanded, painted, and sanded again until the wrinkles hardly show! The back-scene isn't fixed in place yet, just held in by the corners of the baseboard. Once I've double-checked clearances I'll fix it down and glue the foam land-forms in place.

It's always nice when a plan comes together!
Bill



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Too soon old, too late smart.



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Nevadablue » Wed Apr 27, 2016 11:25 pm

:D
Ken

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:10 am

Lovely to see progress, Bill, thanks for sharing.

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:47 am

It's been a while since my last post - I have been working at the land-forming - posts to come soon - and some carriages have been built and are in the paintshop - posts to come soon. I have also been putting together some suitable figures (subjects of another post) - these ...

Image


and the finished result ...

Image


These cruel close-ups don't do my shading any favours, but they do look better at normal viewing distance. The mechanic has had his spanner removed, cap modified into a 'grease-top' type hat, and a collar fitted - Sir Macintosh is very particular about how his estate workers dress. Just to be different I primed the figures white, and used Games Workshop paints, mixed as required to achieve the colours and shadings I wanted.


The chap in the long coat (Henry Ford?) gives me the chance to re-create the famous photo of Katie ...


Image


Poor depth of focus, so the figures aren't as sharp as I was aiming for, but it has the same look. Kaffie needs to be dusted - I must protect it from the general filth of my workbench.


Now the figures need a little touch-up and a coat of matt varnish. Hours of fun
Bill



If at first you don't succeed, cheat.

Too soon old, too late smart.



https://sites.google.com/site/myoldlayouts/

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby HalfPint » Fri Jun 10, 2016 8:39 pm

I really like how you have built this kit, especially the way you have modified the chassis. Great work :D


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