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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi:

I live in Utah, USA and emigrated to the US from England in 1970.

My layout is under construction and is 00 using Peco Code 75. (I have fun explaining the logic behind 00 to US modelers!). The concept is based on main line urban WR in the West Midlands in the late 1950s to early 1960s. I'm was born in Birmingham.

The layout space is 16 feet by 9 feet with staging/fiddle yard on one long side. I have built prosceniums on the other three sides. Layout height is 4' 6".

The main scene is ten feet long with a city station. The track is below street level with blue brick retaining wall, a road with shops next to the platforms, There are house backs and factories at the other end. Perhaps like the line north of Snow Hill. Platforms are covered by an overall roof at one end and there is a goods warehouse at the other end.

The other two dioramas are four feet wide. One will be copied after the line into New Street from Bristol near Five Ways in suburban Brum. The look will be a leafy suburb with high retaining walls and Georgian houses. I may model the canal.

The other will be large factories adjacent to the tracks. I worked the summer of 1962 at BSA in Small Heath. For a quick break, I would go out on the balcony and watch the Wolverhampton - Paddington expresses accelerating a chocolate and cream Inter-City Express. Polished Castles and Kings in those days. So it's all based on nostalgic scenes of my younger days.

The prosceniums enclose the modeled areas very well.

Inspiration has come mainly from Iain Rice (dioramas, artistic scene setting, lighting, backscene, laying track on resilient foam), Barry Norman (baseboard construction, landscaping, city scenes, artistic balance), Peter Denny (the overall picture is what counts, you don't have to be a perfectionist to have fun), and Frank Dyer (run it to a timetable like a real railway). We'll see what happens.

I admit to using cardboard and brickpaper for the buildings rather than plastic. CeeDee's thread on cardboard modelling got my interest to this site.

Richard Davies
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the very warm welcomes.

The height was chosen to get an eye level perspective when sitting on a bar stool. I saves a lot of work on the back of buildings, since you cannot see over. I haven't painted and ballasted the tack yet, and I am not planning to paint the off side of the rails.

The height is very common in the States and it has provided storage space for a lot of Xerox boxes full of model railway stuff, magazines, Christmas decorations, etc. Oddly enough, it was the Brit, Iain Rice, who converted me to eye level viewing. The comment on being a Utah Jazz center made me laugh out loud.

I don't have a digital camera, so pictures may be a long time coming. Sorry.

CeeDee - I've posted a question and comment on windows on your cardboard modelling site.

Richard Davies
Utah, USA
 

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Interestingly enough I have reconsidered the height of my new layout because of this as you see a lot more when its at eye level. My computer is right next to my layout and I see a hell of a lot more when I'm sat down at that level than when I'm standing up. I guess there no point buying highly detailed locomotives when you are going to look at them from a metre or two away.
 

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Hi Richard, Just got back from a week on holiday, so this is my first chance to posy a welcome.
Thought my layout was higher than most UK ones at 42", but 54" is something else !! Like the idea of the storage opportunities it creates though. What about working on it? I'm only 5' 6" tall myself!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi Jeff (Gwent Rail)

Thanks for the welcome.

You asked about the height of the layout and working on it. Track laying is uncomfortable - I stand on a bench to get a working height. Working on the wiring underneath is pretty good. I clear out the storage boxes underneath for the section I am working on and sit on a box. This gives me great headroom, although a hard hat would save me some pain. Perhaps a coalminer's at with a light built in!

Much of the scenery is modular so it can be removed to work on (another Iain Rice idea I adopted). The end scene is a section of houses over the tracks as a view blocker and it comes out as one piece to work on in the living room. I have the same arrangement for the retaining walls and road behind the station.

Best wishes,

Richard Davies
 

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Thanks Richard. There's that man Ian Rice again !! Have started to adopt some of his ideas, so maybe I'll jack up the pit props to 5ft + and go modular with much of the scenic effect work. Certainly could use the extra storage room underneath.
The other point in favour of scenic modules seems to be the way they can be used when a layout is scrapped and replaced with a new one. As someone who is just starting my third layout in 2 years, that also would suit me and stop a lot of waste !!!
 
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