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Author Topic: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - FOR SALE  (Read 40414 times)

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Offline Flakmunky

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Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - FOR SALE
« on: November 29, 2011, 01:54:36 pm »
Dear Fellow N-Gauge Modellers,

I have been building my layout, Dinsdale Park, for over a year now but this wasn't my first attempt at building a layout. I am now quite a way in to the layout build (track is laid, half of it ballasted, some scenery and a couple of buildings are in place.

I recently rediscovered this forum after joining some time ago, I thought I would share my efforts with you all.

I first started with a twin track roundy-round but this was aborted for a couple of reasons. The first was that it was designed to be stored under the spare bed, however despite trying to keep it light weight it very quickly became heavy and cumbersome. The second reason my first layout was aborted was due to mistakes I made in the track layout design. These mistakes where obvious after my very first 'serious' operating session. Finally, as I had originally not wanted a permanent layout I had made a number of compromises on the size and I became increasingly unhappy with the size of the layout; I couldn't fit anything longer than a 3 coach rake in my station.

Below is a picture of where I got to with my first layout before it was disassembled. There were a number of things I did like about it, namely the cutting at the upper left of the layout, the river and the curved bridge.



Things I didn't like, well, I wasn't happy with the way the tunnel went. Also, as this was designed to fit under a bed, I was severely limited with the height available.

So, it was with some trepidation I began to design a new layout. I racked my brain for places it could be permanently located and simultaneously began reading a couple of books on track layout design. I was still set on the idea of a roundy-round until I came across Freezer's Minories layout which I really liked. After some time I hit upon the ideal location and solution to my layout problem.

After a Eureka! moment I realised I could have my Minories inspired layout sitting on top of some bookcases. I also realised that I could turn the end of the layout through 90 degrees which would allow my to have a removable fiddle yard. Not only that, said fiddle yard would be a reverse loop with storage loops... Ok, so it wouldn't be a huge fiddle yard, but it would be enough to fit at least 3 full length trains and 3 more shorter trains...

So with a brave heart I began tweaking Freezer's famous plan. I ended up with the following plan, which, whilst not protoypically correct in every regard, provides me most of what I wanted from a layout.



The famous 'S' bends of Minories have been lost to some degree and I fitted in a couple of slips that never appeared on the original but overall the essence of Minories is still there; all platform faces are accessible to either of the mainlines. The reverse loop / fiddle yard track is shown here, which took a hell of a long time to design to avoid potentially derailing 'S' curves and after some time I managed to do this with Electrofrog Code 55 pointwork.

I also made the decision to switch from DC to DCC and purchased an NCE PowerCab unit to run the system. I also wanted a clean 'diorama' type layout when it was not being operated so had decided on using DCC to control the point motors as otherwise I would either have a pretty big control panel hanging off the layout or I would need several D-Sub connectors...

I will post more of my progress over the coming weeks to bring you up to speed with where I am, but in the mean time all comments and suggestions are welcomed and encouraged.

Regards,

fM
« Last Edit: December 11, 2013, 07:49:16 pm by Flakmunky »
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Offline Tank

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2011, 03:16:51 pm »
Your first layout looked good, but it's a shame you were so restricted.  Good luck with the new one. :thumbsup:

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2011, 06:22:31 pm »
Hi FM - I have long admired the Minories concept and there are many who have modified it to suit needs/wants/space, so I am really looking forward to seeing developments. Good luck and keep us up to date please :thumbsup:

Offline Dock Shunter

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2011, 12:19:05 pm »
Yep another Minories fan here....... :thumbsup:...(Nice one Cyril)
An ideal design for running DMUs....
Look forward to seeing this take shape FM...

Offline Flakmunky

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2011, 02:04:44 pm »
Thanks for the comments.

There was a spot I had in mind in the spare room we call 'The Snug'. This is a room we use as a large study and there were already a number of bookcases in there. This room had a very small return in one of the walls and would enable the bookcases to be arranged in an 'L' shape. The next step then, was first buying then building a set of Ikea Billy bookcases. With the bookcases built I fastened them securely to the wall and then commenced to carefully measure and build the baseboards.

I used 9mm ply with a 34mm x 34mm softwood frame. All joints were glued and screwed using a pocket hole jig, a mighty fine little tool that gives superior strength. It is a simple device with a special drill bit to join timber perpendicularly. Instead of screwing through one piece in to the end grain, you screw through in the other direction at an angle. There are no screw heads visible from the outside. This is a pocket hole jig:



I thought I had an image uploaded of a joint created with this tool but I don't. I can upload one later if any one would like to see in more detail how these tools work.

Once the baseboard was built and painted, I set about laying the track. I printed my track plan at 1:1, then stuck it down to the baseboard and used a notice board push-pin to mark the end points of all track. It was then a simple of case of placing the points in position, marking the basedboard through the throw bars with my push-pin and drilling holes for the point motors before cutting and gluing the track in position.

Here is a shot of the main track once I had glued it down.



Overall I am quite happy with it. At this point the droppers had all been soldered on to the track but nothing else.

The next update will cover the removable fiddle yard.

Thanks for reading!
« Last Edit: November 30, 2011, 08:28:38 pm by Flakmunky »
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Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2011, 03:46:51 pm »
Hi FM - you seem to have been cut off in your prime when typing the post, but your pics show some very neat work :thumbsup:
I look forward to the next instalment.

Offline Flakmunky

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2011, 08:27:41 pm »
lol... fixed!
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My BR 1980's Layout Thread

Offline Flakmunky

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2011, 04:42:56 pm »
The removable fiddle yard section was built at the same time as the main boards, however the track for this was laid last. This removable module is designed to be stored under the spare bed so needed folding legs. It also required some method of accurately locating it so the tracks lined up.



In the image above you can see the pocket hole construction I mentioned in my previous post.

Below is a shot of the track laid on the removable board. These curves were rescued from the first layout and reused here!



The concentric nature of these was quite tricky to lay accurately but I eventually got there. The inner track is about 10 3/4 inches in diameter and I used the Setrack spacing of 35mm between each line, making the radius of the outer track roughly 13 1/2 inches. The outer line is a total of almost 2m long! The inner is approx. 1.3m long, so there is plenty of storage space for trains.

To give maximum length to the platforms I had to push the tracks as far as I could towards the return in the wall and used Flexitrack laid to Setrack 2nd radius and 3rd radius bends to give the correct clearance for my (then pre-ordered) Dapol HST & MKIII coaches. The spacing in the station throat is the Streamline 27mm so the tracks open up slightly as they enter the curves.



I had planned on building a high level town module to sit over these tracks so when in operation you won't see the trains until they have entered the fiddle yard. Obviously with a removable section, accurately aligning the boards is of paramount importance, especially in our scale. To achieve this I used Cabinet Makers Bullet Dowels like these:



I sourced these from Station Road Baseboards, an excellent shop with a great range and very fast delivery. The direct link to their range of dowels, http://www.stationroadbaseboards.co.uk/cart_dowels.htm, show they have quite a good range, I used the 10mm dowels and have found them to be excellent. I actually found the tolerance to be 0.04mm so in every respect they are up to the job!

Here is a shot of the removable fiddle yard in place.



It is held in place by some catches below the baseboard which can be seen here. You can also see the pocket hole construction I mentioned in my previous post.



To fix the track acros the join, I first attached the removable section then test laid the track across the join. I marked and removed relevant sleepers and marked the baseboard where the rails would be. I then screwed 4 brass wood screws on the rail centre lines in close to the edges of the baseboards. After tinning the screws and the underside of the rails I glued the track down and once dried I soldered the rails to the screw heads. I then cut the rails between the screws with my Dremmel. Below is a photograph of this detail and you can see the accuracy the Cabinet Dowels allow. In fact my rolling stock bounces less over this join than it does over the point work!



The whole removable fiddleyard is powered by a Digitrax AR1 Auto Reversing module. I was a little dubious about this device as it was fairly cheap but it has worked flawlessly! I bought this unit, along with my NCE PowerCab from http://www.digitrains.co.uk, another great shop with great service.



Next update will cover some of the rolling stock and buildings I have acquired / built for Dinsdale Park.

'Til next time, happy modelling!
« Last Edit: December 01, 2011, 04:57:19 pm by Flakmunky »
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Offline polo2k

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2011, 05:38:28 pm »
looking really nice there, I have just used cabinet makers dowels too, very pleased with them. I also used the brass screws and im more than pleased.

Click the link in my sig to see a video of how smooth it is, I agree that its plenty smooth!


How is the rest of the track progressing?


Have you considered adding in suplimentary sections between the loops and the rest of the layout. That way you will still have something to build once the rest of it is finished.
Cheers
-Ash-



The only way to guarantee failure, is not to try

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2011, 05:56:48 pm »
Neat work all round, FM - it's looking really good :thumbsup:

Offline Tank

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2011, 06:12:24 pm »
Very well made. :thumbsup:

Offline Flakmunky

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2011, 07:22:46 pm »
Have you considered adding in suplimentary sections between the loops and the rest of the layout. That way you will still have something to build once the rest of it is finished.

I have actually got an alternative removable section in mind but it would be much bigger, probably a similar size to my first aborted layout... It would be multiple level and give my trains somewhere to run out to and back again...

Watch this space!

Neat work all round, FM - it's looking really good :thumbsup:
Very well made. :thumbsup:

Thank you very much, guys. I set out to do this one 'properly'!
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Offline Gordini5

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2011, 07:23:59 pm »
Very neat wood work and looking good.

Offline Flakmunky

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2011, 09:22:47 pm »
This is a picture of the entire layout, with the fiddle yard attached to give you an idea of the whole.



You can see in this picture where the NCE PowerCab plugs in. The D-Sub is to provide power and point control to the fiddle yard... More on point control soon!



Finally, a pic in the 'other' direction showing the station throat.



That is a an old Poole Farish HST I bought some time ago... When this photo was taken I had my pre-order placed at Hattons for a Dapol HST... Pics coming of this soon!
'Til next time!
« Last Edit: December 01, 2011, 09:29:11 pm by Flakmunky »
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Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Dinsdale Park - A Minories Inspired Shelf Layout - Pic Heavy!
« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2011, 09:34:01 pm »
Hmmm - I notice a certain Chimay glass keeps popping up in your pics :smiley-laughing: :beers:

 

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