Wednesday, November 12, 2008

"just a blog"

Another evening of track cleaning, Briers Grove Station is now running more freely, still a few minor sections of track to clean up, but it is running.

There's always something you miss when working on the layout, and tonight I found I hadn't cleaned the track properly after ballasting. So that job has to be finished off before I can really consider a running night.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Tunnel Embankment - Near Side Pt2

I was looking at the photograph below and an idea struck me for my aims on this section of modelling.

Using the idea of the raised embankment, I've increased the length and the width of the embankment, this allows me a good base for building on to and also allows for greater scene detailing at a later date.

One of the problems I have is track cleaning, so most of the modelling this side of the main track has got to be modular to some degree, having the embankment much wider will allow me to position the section more easily and make it much stronger so that I can leave it in place rather than keep moving it.

I've just cut the shape of the first part of the embankment, I've got an idea in my head and if it works I can offer a little more of a story to history of Briers Grove branch line.

Clutter & Chaos

This might seem stupid to mention, but from time to time you need to get into the modelling room/area and give it a good clear out.

I've just spent nearly 3 hours sorting out the modelling area, including boxes that I had collected of odds and ends. Now having cleaned the storage areas and sorted the remaining boxes into a sensible order I now have more room and can see what I do and don't need.

I've binned some really old modelling items I was keeping for a rainy day, sorted the junk from good and now have a good idea of what I have collected over the last few years.

As I'm working in my shed, I've put some hooks up and put models on to each hook near to where they should end up on the layout. This gives me an overview of what I was aiming for, but also makes sure I don't duplicate models.

My next evening will be to finish the clean up and sort out the modelling bench, I might even invest in some portable storage draws for the paints etc.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Tunnel Embankment - Near Side Pt1

Briers Grove Tunnel Corner (nr embankment)
I decided I wanted some of the running to be obscured by the modelling, so the tunnel was a good place to start. Working from the rear out does mean that some of the scenic modelling will need to wait for some time, as I'm working from right to left and back to front.

To give the effect I'm looking for I've started on the near embankment to give an idea of what it might look like when completed. I wanted this raised to offer a more 3D effect rather than all being the same level. This first embankment seen in the photographs is just for ideas and to offer a little more for viewing when running stock.

I have an idea for modelling this section, but first need to finalise the purchase of some kits prior to creating the scene. As you can see from the photograph, the curve offers a good scenic location for photography, so the embankments will offer a good modelling opportunity in the future.

Station Yard

Elkin Station yard diagram
Having spent a few days preparing the scenics around the yard area, I was itching to get the fencing erected. My problem was that not really knowing what the yard scene would look like, I really did need to try some ideas out. My favourite to date is the one featured in the current set of photographs, of course this may change towards the finalised scene.

Once I was happy I began the preparations for modelling the fencing, I need plenty of room for track cleaning so had always planned on the fence being further back with space for railway maintenance gangs to work.

I drilled some small holes by hand for the fence posts, put some plaster in the holes and on the fence post and then set the fencing up. I also used some neat PVA on two sections to give further strength. Adding the gate was a little trickier, I really should have waited, but I felt the positioning would be easier and with the fence still tacky offered greater flexibility when positioning.

The open section of fencing between the platform ramp and yard will have a small work scene included, yet to be finished. Most of the major parts of the yard scene are complete, just finishing touches for the models. The next two stages are to complete the allotments at the other end of the station and the current end of the platform, the latter has been in planning for the last few weeks, models and ideas being tested for scenic value.

The allotments are halfway through completion, I started these some time back and have been tinkering on and off with them. I have some new models to put in the scenes and this should offer a good run of scenic viewing when finished. Once this is complete I will need to start looking at some time tables for the layout, especially over the coming months of winter.