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Author Topic: The Capital Lines  (Read 20220 times)

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Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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The Capital Lines
« on: February 17, 2014, 06:38:51 pm »
An introduction

I thought it might be a good idea to gather together my efforts in a dedicated layout topic rather than pepper the “What are people doing on their layout right now?”Ě thread with these intermittent signs of life, such as they are.

This is my first proper attempt at a UK N gauge layout since about 1970 (when a schoolboy’s pocket money didn’t get me very far anyway) and was brought about by the long overdue arrival of the game-changing products we’re only now starting to take for granted.  Well, that and the discovery that I could offload a lifetime’s worth of 4mm and 7mm items on ebay rather more easily than I’d imagined.

At the moment I’m heading in the direction of a 1960s world of steam and green diesels, although with a healthy dose of Rule 1 thrown in as I’ve already acquired three Japanese EMUs despite best intentions.  The layout lives in a 40 feet by 10 loft, although I’m currently only using half of that - N gauge really is small when you’re used to OO and O.

As well as a change of scale, I’m intending to move from my normal freight-centric approach to a passenger focused one, with the emphasis on urban multiple unit workings and largely under wires.  As a Black Country boy born and bred, I get somewhat agoraphobic if there’s nothing holding the sky up.

Finally, and most importantly, this is a zero cost project, funded entirely by the sale of my older model railway items.  I’ve sunk enough cash into the model railway trade for one lifetime, I think.  If only I could get SWMBO to take a similar stance with shoes…

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2014, 06:41:42 pm »
First steps

Iíve started off with storage sidings in the form of a temporary fiddle-yard feeding a simple and equally temporary dog-boned double track oval.  Past experience has shown me I need somewhere to park stock and run trains from at the earliest stage of a layout if Iím to avoid too much handling of the stock.  Also, as Iím new to N, I need to be able to run trains to get a feel both for what train lengths Ďlook rightí to me in this scale and what typical locomotives can manage to pull.  So something quick and temporary seemed a sensible first step while I re-learned things.

Iíve taken this initial step using Kato Unitrack on the baseboards my old OO fiddle-yard once lived on, which brings me nicely to a bit of cutínípaste from the original thread...


Update originally posted Nov 18th 2013



100% Kato in my (unfinished!) fiddle yard.  Being able to quickly change things as the layout evolves is a feature worth buying in to for me - seems like I've spent half of my life re-engineering fiddle yards and enough's enough!


The cab-ride video was filmed with a Branor Systems CamTruck.  Only a standard definition one, unfortunately, but he does HD as well - subject to availability.


Update originally posted Nov 19th 2013



Testing the lengths of various trains and how they fit in the fiddle yard.  Being relatively new to N I don't have a 'feel' for this like I did in 4mm.  For a start, trains take up a little more space than I estimated because of the size of those infernal Rapido couplings.




A guard's eye view of yesterday's fiddle yard testing session, filmed with the Branor Systems CamTruck.  Although I don't intend to run 60 wagon trains normally, they're a tight fit in the fiddle yard so I'm planning to lengthen it.  Space on the longest roads for a 60 wagon train with two locos should give a comfortable fit and allow for poor parking  :-[
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:56:13 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated links to videos »

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2014, 06:43:47 pm »
Update originally posted Dec 31st 2013



Work proceeds a(snails)pace on the fiddle yard.  In an effort to give it a scenic dimension (this is the age of the onboard camera, after all) I've bunged in a Kato ready-to-plonk station.  At the cost of one track's width, this gives me somewhere to park my Japanese EMUs from time to time  :)



Just around the corner from the first shot is this junction, nicknamed Gallifrey West for the time being due to the elastic nature of the space-time continuum in the area.  The grey concrete-based track to the bottom right marks the place for a third Kato double-crossover that I haven't actually ordered as yet.  The few wooden offcuts are a place-holder for an over bridge.

If you look closely the nearest point has been chopped with a razor saw to remove the diverging curved part.  The two tracks on the right lead to the station and are now DCC enabled.  The leftmost tracks remain plain DC until I get some more N-sized decoders.   :)

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2014, 06:45:12 pm »
Update originally posted Jan 2nd 2014


Just been trouble-shooting, as not all of the DCC-enabled track seems to be working.  The fault seems to be with a connector I'd dismantled to see how it (no longer) worked  :-[




Took a quick video while playing about.  A bit dark now I've added various obstructions, I think I either need to get some more lighting at the back of the fiddle yard or pretend it's Birmingham New Street  :D
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:57:06 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated link to video »

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2014, 06:46:14 pm »
Update originally posted Jan 6th 2014


An historic photo.  Not so much the cutting of the first sod, but the removal of the last OO point, just visible at the centre of the pic, under what will be a temporary Unitrack N reverse loop for a month or two.  I've spent the afternoon eradicating the final patch of troublesome OO  :beers: 

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2014, 06:47:46 pm »
Update originally posted Jan 8th 2014


(Unfortunately this video ended up in 2 parts as I unwittingly discovered a serious bug in iMovie that trashed the half-complete project file when I broke for tea!)






I get more impressed by Kato Unitrack's ease of use every time I have a play.  I can see I'll need to work hard to stop it spreading beyond the fiddle yard  :D
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:57:59 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated links to videos »

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2014, 06:48:43 pm »
Update originally posted Jan 20th 2014

My recent activity:

« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:58:24 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated link to video »

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2014, 06:50:00 pm »
Update originally posted Jan 26th 2014




Spent the afternoon wiring a few block sections in and then testing them.  Lots and lots of testing  :D

Then I removed my temporary return loop, ready for the next phase of track laying.  Quickly realised, however, that I'd not got a driver's eye record of it, so bunged it back down and whizzed the trusty CamTruck around  8)
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:59:00 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated link to video »

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2014, 06:50:39 pm »
Update originally posted Feb 12th 2014


« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 11:59:31 am by tutenkhamunsleeping, Reason: Updated link to video »

Offline scotsoft

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2014, 08:35:51 pm »
Thank you for collecting all your videos and pictures in one place, I have watched every single video and thoroughly enjoyed them  :thumbsup:

cheers John.

Offline Sprintex

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #10 on: February 17, 2014, 09:09:36 pm »
Excellent collection of videos 8)


Paul

Offline Geoff

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2014, 09:51:52 pm »
I enjoyed your video's Steve, and the space you have is fantastic, just one question does the Kato stations work well with the British Loco's and rolling stock?

Geoff


Offline Lawrence

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2014, 09:55:12 pm »
Ye Gods man!  Did you rob a Kato factory? that is a lot of track Steve, wish I had that kind of room.  That Chou line train will look super going round that circuit.
Promise I will get in touch about that spare Greenmax stuff  :-[

Offline tutenkhamunsleeping

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2014, 10:13:58 pm »
does the Kato stations work well with the British Loco's and rolling stock?

Yes, fine.  No clearance issues.  In a couple of the videos you should be able to see a rake of Stanier coaches if you look to the right under the canopies.  They look 'right' to my eyes at least.

I did see you ask a question about the platform heights elsewhere, but couldn't find it again after I'd measured them.  My Kato platforms are about 15mm high, which is about 8mm above Kato rail level - Kato track being quite deep.

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Re: The Capital Lines
« Reply #14 on: February 18, 2014, 03:12:49 pm »
im desperate for one of those camera trucks! i was told i could order one at xmas but i never heard back from him :( another email to be sent i think!
Visit my heritage Railway "moorside Valley Railway"

http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=9280.0

see first post for exhibition dates

 

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