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entry 3 Feb 2012, 13:24
Gainsborough it may not be, but with the temperature pushing 40C for the best part of a week I decided to take some time out and commence preliminary painting of the backdrops. A nice simple light blue is acting as the base coat, over which I have added some uneven white washing, to be followed by cloud work. That should get me to the point where it can wait for the foreground of the background (double-dutch) to follow once the actual 3d hillwork has gone on. Even just the stark blue has lifted the layout dimensionally, so assuming I am not a complete mural-deficient clod, it should provide a whole other aspect to the scene once completed.

On the positive note it poured down two nights ago and made for a much cooler, if not humid day. I really must examine air-conditioning in the garage...

A large 20m roll of Trackrite arrived at my door this week, so the roll out of trackbed continues as the NDR cuts through the countryside. I have placed nearly all of the points to the East now and as soon as I get some power to the double slips I should be able to get a continuous test loop run going for the first time. My double Lincoln-Warrington mainline crosses the Sheffield - Shirebrook loop line at Langwith necessitating two double slips in succession.

I tried running a long, loaded train around the loop today and I am still unhappy with the inclines in a couple of sections. With a bit of fiddling I have managed to spread the rise over another 500mm and it seems to have made it a lot easier on the loco. It still won't take a ten car passenger express, but then that line was never intended for that. At least she gets up and down now quite comfortably with the expected configuration. Unfortunately the time spent on that meant the slips will have to wait another week. Probably for the best as I am still unsure of how to wire them up, how to set them up on the controller and how to fit four turnout motors in the available space. Combined with the supports for the tracks it should make for an interesting time in geometry and physics.

The layout of the Langwith Junction yards is the next big job. I had it planned on paper and in my mind, but I can already see how it can be made better now I am actually laying down track on the board. In theory this should be the simplest part of the trackwork as it is all on the flat and in a big open space. The trick I guess is getting the authentic feel and looking at the photos it was a pretty manic area with rail going every which way. Happily I have figured a way to get an entry in from both lines in accordance with reality, if not in quite the right geographic locations, but we do what we can.

 
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