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Monday, 23 December 2019
218 - Railway Project - Part 8

218 - Railway Project - Part 8

Hi, it's time for part 8 and I think it's about time my brother-in-law and I came up with a name for the layout, I can't keep calling it "The Layout".

If you're interested, the previous posts can be found here:

Having rescued the layout on the last post, we could finally start cracking on with the landscaping.

Filler mixed with green paint first to give a good base colour, cover up joins and add some ground texture.

Quite a large section to cover and blend into the base board.

The base colour becomes a bit more "earthy" as you come round to the main station area. We tried to keep this smoother with the buildings being on here.

More green filler was applied in the far corner and along the top edge of this section.

The nice smooth filler continued down the ramp that we added in as a transition point.

And the green continued in the top corner here as well.

We are planning on creating a road that will run from the main station, down the ramp to the inner loop station and beyond, so this area received some dark grey filler to create a more industrial base.

And the road will also continue through the viaduct.

Finally we used the earthy filler to block out nay spaces that hadn't been touched, such as the large blank space on the opposite side of the inner loop.

Thanks for reading through and again wishing you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Friday, 13 December 2019
217 - Railway Project - Part 7

217 - Railway Project - Part 7

Hi and thanks for visiting for Part 7 in this ongoing project.

Previous posts can be found here:

The last update was all about the buildings that will be added to the layout. Todays update is about the layout itself, and a minor problem we encountered.

When I say minor problem, what I actually mean is a major problem that meant we had to remove around a third of the outer loop from the board. The cause of this major issue was the angle of the inclines. We calculated the ratio of the incline before we started and then based everything around it. Track was added and then we tested the incline. However, we only tested the incline using a little 0-4-0 shunter with one carriage. The shunter worked fine, but when we started using the larger locos, they would not go up the slope.

So drastic measures were needed. The first of which was to remove the track from the offending areas and safely secure it before commencing repairs.

The repairs came in the form of an inch thick sheet of polystyrene. We had checked that this would decrease the gradient enough for larger locos to make their way up.

The inclines then got hacked out for the track to be raised.

And the curved sections were raised too.

The blank spaces were filled in with celotex.

Polystyrene was used to create the landscaping for the new sections.

The process was repeated on the other side. The siding was also raised, but has a slight downward slope away from the main loop.

Minor disaster now over. We used some grey tinted fine fill and relaid the loop.

Now it was just a case of trying to blend the new sections into the original base. We're so lucky that celotex and polystyrene can be cut and shaped. It allows us to add in the ramp on the right side and attempt to cover up our mistake. However, it's all a learning curve and this is only the second layout we've done and the scenery is a bit more complex than the first.

Thank you again for stopping to check out the update.

If I don't manage to get another post out before Christmas, I wish all of you and your families a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, 27 November 2019
216 - Railway Project - Part 6

216 - Railway Project - Part 6

Hello everyone, thank you for taking a look at the latest update.

If this is the first time you've dropped in, the previous parts can be found below:

Today's update is going to be about even more Metcalfe card buildings. This one is quite picture heavy so have fun.

At the front of the layout will be the main station and that station will have some platforms which will be made from the Stone Platform Kit PO235. 

To create the platforms, a template of blank card is used, which is at the top of the above picture. This then allows you to attach the pavement sheets and cut them to the right shape and size. A front wall is attached and then the triangle supports are added as shown above.

This method allows you to create a platform of any length and also add some shape to the platform too. For example, if you have a platform on a curve, you can cut that curve out.

The rear retaining wall is added at the rear of the platform section to stop scale people falling off. This section is for the outside of the loop and is the largest single platform section.

Finally, stick on paving slabs are added on the edge to make the platform appear more realistic. This piece is for the opposite side and will have the main station building with it.

And this small section will go on the other end of the main station, as it comes wit a piece of platform already attached.

Here is the beginnings of the main station. This is the Mainline Station Booking Hall kit PO320 and really is an imposing and impressive building. You will have to wait for photos of the front of the building due to some glue issues.

You can however see the finished back of the building, with canopy and platform attached.

The large section of platform isn't going to be completely empty. We have built the Island Platform Building PO322 for this side, make use of many clothes pegs.

For a smaller kit, there is still a lot of detail and the above pic hopefully gives you a bit more of an idea of how these kits are constructed.

With the windows and roof added, we have a nice little building to add something more to the platform.

With having two platforms, we needed a way for people to get across the tracks. Enter the Footbridge kit PO236. This one was tricky to find a few months ago as there appeared to be a stock shortage, though they may have been updating it at the time of looking. The kit is made up of two stair sections with some nice window detailing.

There is then a central span, which can be cut down depending on how big the gap is that you need your bridge to cross. You can also combine the kit to create a bigger footbridge with multiple stairs if needed.

Here is the completed footbridge, ready for people to walk across to get to the other platform.
Every layout needs a signal box, and this one is no different. So we've got the PO330 GWR Signal Box. May not be completely accurate for the locomotives we'll be running, but this isn't a replica of anywhere in particular.

Unfortunately, we forgot to get the interior detail kit for the signal box which gives you signal levers and a fire place and other little bits. The kit still looks awesome and will be great on the layout.
Finally, there are a couple of buildings to be added to the hilltop. On the left is a workers cottage and on the right is the more impressive farm house. These come as a set in the Manor Farm House kit PO250. Unfortunately there are no WIP shots of these, but they will add some nice detail to the hilltop.

Cheers for taking the time to scroll through this update, there is a lot more to come.
Thursday, 31 October 2019
215 - Railway Project - Part 5

215 - Railway Project - Part 5

Hi everyone, thanks for taking the time to stop by. Todays update is part 5 in the railway project. Please find the other parts here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

With the majority of the scenery done, it's about time we got some track ready. We are using Peco flexi track for everything but the points. All of the joints will be soldered, as you can see above.

What you end up with is some pretty long sections of track that somehow you need to shape.

Fortunately, flexi track is flexible. So with a little bit of bending, you can get the curve radius that you need. Hornby curves come in certain set degrees so flexi track gives you the option to make your own curves.

And then you can repeat that on the other side as well. You do need to make sure that the track doesn't end up uneven and there are track set guides but we just use a spare carriage to check its all smooth.

Here is the first run of track in place on the layout.

 Fast forward a little and the outer loop is complete. The double track at the front is for the main station.

The inner loop is somewhat more complex. We added in some sidings to this loop to make things more interesting and to provide something else to draw the eye to the back of the layout.

Thanks again for reading/viewing this update. There is more to follow.
Monday, 30 September 2019
214 - Railway Project - Part 4

214 - Railway Project - Part 4

Hi everyone, thank you for dropping by. Continuing on with the railway project today. If this is your first time taking the time to check out the project, here are links to Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

The first thing that we cracked on with was making the hill look a little less like a pile of polystyrene. Simple DIY filler was used to smooth out the hillside.

It was also used to provide a bit of texture to a bobbly surface.

One of the things we wanted to try out was water effects. And that meant cutting a river through the viaduct. The river flows through the centre of the viaduct and around the middle pier. A rough outline of the river was drawn onto the celotex before attacking it using an electric plunge saw. Now this might sound like overkill but it made the job so much quicker and easier.

With the river cut out, the viaduct went back in place and the girder bridge for the inner loop was added. Something didn't look quite right though.
So we widened the river a little as it felt a bit narrow. Now it looks more substantial and will allow for a bit of added detail on the banks.

More filler was used to seal the river bed and add some texture. This time some paint was mixed in to try and make things easier for later.

Thanks again for looking through this and stay tuned for another update where we might actually see some track being laid!
Tuesday, 3 September 2019
Wednesday, 21 August 2019
212 - Railway Project - Part 3

212 - Railway Project - Part 3

Hi all. Today's post is continuing on with the OO gauge model railway layout in my brother-in-law's garage. If you need to catch up on what's been done before, here's Part 1 and Part 2.

This update will be on making progress on the two incline sections and making them a little less plain.

First thing was to get the curved sections glued so they would hold their shape. Copious amounts of PVA glue was used in the grooves and the curve held it's shape perfectly.

PVA was then used to attach the curve section to the base celotex. Random garage items come in handy to hold things in place.

The same process was used for the other side.

We also purchased a sheet of polystyrene and it got its first use in creating a section to fill behind the curve. PVA to attach the blocks and then a cordless jigsaw to cut the block. It's a little bit overkill but it cuts so smoothly and quickly.

Pretty much a perfect fit. Glued down with PVA again.
Filling the rest of the empty space was then a case of cutting some of the sheet off to the right shape and creating some pillars to support it.

The inside of the curve was bit trickier to build up. Multiple pieces of curved cuts were used and attached using a combination of glue and screw. The descent was also gently shaped into a sloped bank.

The right hand side has something a bit more elaborate going on - a nice little hill.

Multiple layers of polystyrene were used that were cut smaller each time. We made each layer a little smaller than necessary as we wanted to be able to fill the gaps without ending up with a sheer cliff face.

The inside of the curve also got some hill layers as well.

The inside curve was built up to look like the hill had been partially cut into for the track laying..

A little look up the line through the cutting.

And a look back down the hill.

Next up will be to mix up some filler and cover all the polystyrene. We'll also be trying to use the filler to create some more natural looking landscape, rather than the Minecraft hills we have at the moment.

Thanks again for taking the time to read this.
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