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This is my latest and probably my last layout. It is in a shed on the North side of our bungalow in an area that never gets the sun and is not much use for anything else. The shed is nominally 24' by 6' but part is sectioned off for gardening tools and things. Allowing for insulation and lining this gives me a space 18' 10" by 5' 7" or 5.74m by 1.7m for the model railway. That is a good length compared to what many people have but the width is restrictive. Like my previous layouts it will be L.M.R. of B.R. in the late 1950s/early 60s and will have a flavour of the Settle and Carlisle line.

I had nearly finished the previous layout in the shed, which was a plain roundy-roundy on one level, when I realised why I had not touched it for several weeks. It was because there were too many things about it which I did not like. They were :-
(a) Regular derailments at the lifting flap which I had obviously not made well enough.
(
Even more regular derailments at the point leading into the up line storage loops, even after I had replaced it with a new one.
© I didn't like the station main building being at the front of the layout.
(d) I wanted a longer scenic run.
(e) Peco had brought out their bullhead rail with very much improved points.

I decided that I would completely dismantle and rebuild it. This time it would be a double roundy-roundy with storage loops below the station. Also the whole thing would be built high enough that ducking under to get in and out would be easy, so that the lines across the doorway could be permanent fixtures. (The fact that I am only 5' 7" means that I can easily duck under 5' or a little less.) The main station building would be at the back of the layout. I spent hours on Anyrail checking that the proposed track plan would work while keeping to the 24" minimum radius that I had on the previous layout. I decided that I would have the minimum workable gap between levels so that gradients up to the station level could be as gentle as possible. In the end I chose 70mm between levels and this resulted in gradients of between 1 in 70 and 1 in 75.

I chose Little Salkeld from the stations on the S&C because I wanted one where the refuge siding went behind the second platform and where the goods yard was to the left of the station building looking from the main lines. I think that it's the only one with these characteristics. I shall make two changes though; for visual and operating interest, I will give it an extra siding, and I will put home and starter signals on both main lines, which the real station did not have.

If I can do it successfully, here are two pictures of the storage loops before the station baseboard was put on top.

Code:
I have got quite a bit further with the construction but this will do for a first instalment.

Robert

P.S. I haven't yet got the hang of transferring pictures from the gallery.
 

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If I can do it correctly here are the pictures that I meant to include in the last post.







They show the lower level storage loops before the station boards were put on top. The lines are at 47mm centres in order to get six of them in 300mm width. You may be able to see that each loop is long enough to hold two complete trains. The engine of each train is held in an isolated dead section after being driven in without slowing down. This means that when power is put into the isolated section the engine will immediately start moving again without instruction.

Here is a picture of my control panel.



The DCC Concepts levers in the middle will control the points and signals on the station level and are not yet connected. The lever switches each side of them control the points on the lower storage level. There are infra-red sensors under the front isolated sections and the LEDs light up when they can "see" a train above. The push-to-make buttons each send power to a front isolated section.

When I want to send a train up onto the scenic section, I push the relevant button and it moves off. When the I.R. sensor "sees" that the train has gone it temporarily sends power to the rear isolated section and that engine immediately moves forward and then stops when it gets into the front isolated section. It thus automatically moves up and makes room for the train which has gone round the layout to come back into its place on that loop. I did extensive testing of this set-up before putting the station boards on top.

I think that will do for now.

Robert
 

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The next step was to make the lower curves at the ends and the inclines up to the station boards. Here they are in their raw state.





I have to admit that inclines going opposite ways so close together does look a bit odd, but I have to accept that to get the length of scenic run that I want. Here they are with 2mm cork underlay, the track bed painted grey, and Peco code 75 bullhead rail laid on top.



I like the little track joiners that come with this type of track but at first found them really fiddly to deal with. However I have found a simpler way to use them. I put one on the end of a spare piece of rail about 30mm long and offer this up to the last piece of track that has been laid. It is then reasonably simple to slide it along and remove the short piece of rail. I find that offering up the next piece of track to the one already laid with joiners is easier than offering up the next piece with joiners on it.

I then built the upper curves at each end. First the door end. The lower track will be in a tunnel. You can see from the back scene still on the door how much higher the new layout is compared to the previous one.



And the opposite end. I am not sure how I am going to do the scenic work in this area.



I then installed the boards for the station level, laid the cork for the double track main line, painted it, and then laid the up (or rear) line. It is nearly finished. It looks finished in the picture but the two points and the piece of track to the right are not glued in place and do not have droppers.





Looking at this line, I wondered whether a train would run through it successfully. It would have to rely on track joiners for power at this stage but that might not matter. Also I had removed the springs from the points but had not yet fitted their Tortoise motors so the blades were floating free. However since they were trailing points, this might not matter either. Well it worked!

Here are links to two YouTube videos of up line trains going round the layout. Please excuse the tools and other junk at the back of the layout. I was never the tidiest of workers.



I have got further than this with the construction but I will leave that for the next post.

Robert
 

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Jim, Peco have only released the bullhead large radius points so far. They are the same size as the code 100 large radius ones.

The double slip, single slip, and long crossing are due out soon, but they have been "due out soon" for about a year. They told me in an email that they would be available in shops before the end of this year but that now looks unlikely. Others have been told early next year.

I believe that medium radius points are on the drawing board but when they will be available is anyone's guess.

Robert

P.S. A shed 7.2m by 2.4m it says in another thread! I'm envious. A pity that the width is not quite enough for O gauge.
 

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Thank you for your comments, 34C. (Why can't you at least give us a first name?)

The curve through the platforms is 9m radius as worked out on Anyrail. I know that the points curve a little, and they do follow the curve through the platforms., although that's not obvious unless you get your eye down to track level and look along them. By the way. those platforms are the ones from the previous layout and are just plonked there to show roughly where the new ones will go. They will have to be replaced because they are slightly too tall as I used thicker cork on the previous layout. Also they follow the curve pretty well but I don't think they are quite right in that respect.

I am interested in what you say about the double slip because I need one for my goods yard. However, I will use the Peco one when it becomes available. The main reason is that I bought two right-handed large radius points which I intended using instead of a DS because I thought they might still not be available for a long time. If they arrive early next year I will go back to the retailer and ask them to swop the two points for a DS. Also I'm not one that likes shunting; it's trains rolling past that I like so it won't be used that often. It's true that any train put into the up refuge siding will have to pass through the slip so I hope that won't cause a problem.

If I had Jim's shed I would model a single line passing station in O gauge and be content with a few small engines like 4F or Jinty. Actually, would I be content with that? I will never know. On reason why I would like to work in O gauge is the nearly correct scale/gauge combination. I couldn't do EM (let alone P4) because I don't have the skill and eyesight nor the time for it. Or come to that the width necessary.,

Robert

P.S. I have since finished the down line but haven't yet taken pictures or videos of it. I'll do that after Christmas when I will be away with son, daughter-in-law and the grandchildren.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Jim. the station boards are not removable. They are 600mm wide whereas the storage level is only300mm wide. I designed the track plan so that all of the points in the station area (except possibly one not yet laid) are in the front 300mm so that Tortoise motors can be fitted below without fouling the tracks underneath. I have four Dapol working home signals to fit with their projections below board level. The two at the left hand end will be in the front 300mm so no problem. The other two will be at the far end of the platforms. The up line one will be right at the back and so should miss the curve of the tracks below. The down line one is a problem and might have to go round the corner.

The boards are 12mm hardwood ply and so don't need cross bearers. They are supported by 70mm x 18mm wood along the back and front. There are six substantial legs half way between the front and back at roughly 1.2m intervals. This means that the front of the storage area is open and I can just about reach in to remove rolling stock if necessary. It's not easy but possible, so I hope that I don't have to do it very often. It's why I did extensive testing before fitting the station boards. I have a CMX track cleaner to use for the storage tracks in particular.

Robert
 

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Time for another update.

I've now properly finished the up line by sticking down the two points and the last piece of track and adding droppers to them. I've also finished the down line. On this line the trains wouldn't go through the trailing crossovers so easily so I've had to fit Tortoise motors to them to hold the blades in the straight direction but I haven't wired power to them yet. Here are pictures of the completed double tracks through the station boards. You may notice that I have cleared some of the junk at the back of the layout but not all of it.





The next picture is intended to show that I have slightly bent the points so that they follow the curve through the station.



I'm not sure that it does that very successfully.

Here are links to videos of down line trains.



The next thing for me to do is make the new platforms. Until that is done I can't lay the sidings. I also think it's time to move the backscenes (which will have to be cut down) from the roof to their new positions. I'll post another update when I've made significant progress.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Thank you for reviving this thread. It has been a long while since I posted an update and I don't really know why. It may be because I have become somewhat disillusioned with the layout due to the number of problems I have had with it. I am beginning to think that it may have been too much of an ambitious project. That said, I have been making progress with scenic work on the side opposite the station. Here is a view of one corner.
https://www.modelrailforum.com/forums/index...i&img=21505

I realised that a main line descending into a tunnel was unrealistic so I have put the ruined castle here as a reason for it. The idea is that the railway company that built the line were not allowed to demolish it and couldn't easily go round it, so decided to tunnel under it. (I wonder whether there are any real examples of this.)

I will post this now and come back with more when I have checked that I can get pictures posted here correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Thank you all for the comments. They have really cheered me up. I will now show you some more of the progress made. This time I will try to get the actual pictures posted here. First a longer shot that includes the castle corner.

 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
O.K. I've got the hang of moving pictures here so I'll carry on from the last post. Next a view looking the other way.



Now the next section to be worked on.



And here is the piece of scenic matting torn to size and just placed in position. (I stuck it down yesterday but haven't yet photographed it.)



I said "torn to size" because I find that tearing the edge from the back does two things. Firstly it gives the edge a realistic wavy shape. (Grass doesn't naturally grow with a straight edge. Secondly the last few millimetres get a chamfer that means it blends in with the ground next to it.

I haven't made much progress on the other side of the layout as I can't finish the goods yard on the up line until I get the bullhead double slip. I have reconstructed the down platform as the one from the previous layout was about 2mm too tall and its curvature was not quite correct. I will remake the up platform when the weather is good enough to work outside and the sunlight is good enough for me to see what I'm doing.

I promise not to leave it too long before the next update.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Here are some more pictures. First, the scenic matting up to the tunnel is finished. (Of course there's still the higher part in the corner to do.)



Next a picture of my revised control panel. I decided that it would be better to separate the lever frame from the rest. I also decided to replace the lever switches with rotary ones. these not only chain the points to whichever track is selected but they also send power to the push buttons which energise the dead sections on which engines stand. (This was included after a couple of times when I mistakenly energised a track and started the train having forgotten to change the points. I can now only energise a dead section if the points are correctly set.) The LEDs are connected to infra red sensors which light up if a track has an engine on it.



Finally the lever frame. (I'm a bit ashamed of the spaghetti appearance of the wiring.)



There may now be several weeks until I have made sufficient progress to report on it.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
I realise that it's been months since I posted an update on my layout but here's the next one.

I have continued the scenery around the door end of the layout.

20200


Amd then across the front of the station area.

20201


You may be able to see that the replacement down platform is complete whereas the up platform is still a work in progress.

I have also been working on the far end.

20202


This is not quite finished as the left-hand wall needs its capping stones. The position of the rear plate girder bridge is an attempt at a con trick. I want to give the impression that the lower track runs straight on whereas it really turns sharply to the right. This con trick may not come off very well.

You may also be able to see in these pictures that I have been able to finish attaching all of the green facias over the wiring at the front (but the sawn tops need touching up).

Of course I, like many others, am still waiting for Peco to produce the bullhead double slip before I can get on with the goods yard (although I understand the reasons for the delay). I am thinking about putting in a FB double slip as a temporary measure to be replaced later.

That's all for now. I will try not to wait so long before the next update.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
I thought I would show you a two minute video of my two latest acquisitions at Little Salkeld. The Hornby DMU stops at the down platform while the Bachmann class 40 pulls an express train through the up platform.

Actually it's not that good. There is quite a wait at the beginning before anything happens and I haven't yet got the hang of stopping the DMU correctly. You do get a good idea of the sound in the DMU.

 

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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
Another update although there isn't much to report.

I have finished the bridge area at the far end of the layout. The walls and pillars all have their capping stones and the plate girder at the back has a stone pillar at each end, something I had forgotten about in a previous picture. I am not sure that the bushes by the right hand wall look very convincing.

Water resources Sky Natural landscape Land lot Urban design


I have also done a job which I have been promising myself for months that I would do. That is to paint green the raw top edge of the fascia that goes all the way round the inside of the layout. Compare these before and after pictures.

Green Plant Terrestrial plant Line Urban design


Plant Automotive tire Leaf Wood Line


I think that the next job is to add pillars and capping stones to the wall at the back of the long incline. I'm not looking forward to this as it will need lots of pillars which will not be easy to make as they have to be 2 to 3mm thick in front of the wall and 6mm thick at the top where they are above the wall. some 6 x 6mm strip wood to make them but it will be fiddly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
I have made a reasonable amount of progress since the last update. I got fed up waiting for the bullhead double slip so when I saw a private seller offering a new code 75 FB one at a bargain price I bought it. I haven't glued it down and I've fitted it with half length track joiners which can be slid back enough to release it when the time comes. (Actually the difference isn't all that noticeable so I am wondering whether or not to replace it eventually.) In all other respects the goods yard is complete. If you compare mine to the original 'Little Salkeld' track plan you will see that I have given it an extra siding but this is the only difference. I would appreciate comments about the positions that I have temporarily placed the loading gauge and the water refill stations (water cranes?).

Sky Mode of transport Grass Cloud Asphalt


Ecoregion Building Plant Track Rolling stock


Train Sky Mode of transport Rolling stock Wood


I have also finished the left hand corner at the far end of the shed.

Water resources Ecoregion Sky Water Plant


I realise that the uniform green scenic matting is a bit bland and I will try to do something about that one day although U have no idea what that will be.

Right hand far corner is the next part to be tackled.
 

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Discussion Starter · #44 ·
For the last few days I have been working on the right hand corner at the far and of the layout. Here is the result.

Sky Cloud Ecoregion Nature Highland


And here is a picture of the whole of the far end.

Interior design Urban design Tree Plant Wood


You mat be able to see some model cows in the left hand corner. I realise that something is needed to keep them off the rails. I know that in S&C country it should be a dry stone wall but it will probably be a fence as I don't have the patience or skill to make a wall.

P.S. Please forgive the mess under the layout.
 
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