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Your Layout and Models => Layout Construction => Topic started by: belstone on January 01, 2019, 07:18:18 PM

Title: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 01, 2019, 07:18:18 PM
I haven't had the chance to do much modelling lately due to house move and work commitments, but I have finally decided to embark on my "big layout" - trying to recreate a small slice of the Edinburgh - Carlisle "Waverley Route".  Stobs was the first station south of Hawick on the ten mile climb to Whitrope summit, and one of the smallest and simplest on the line, with a single goods siding on the Down side.  Immediately north of the station was a stone four-arch viaduct: the area was heavily wooded and altogether very attractive.  By 1961 large numbers of LNER Pacifics and V2s were being displaced from the East Coast Main Line by diesels, and for a short time they found a new home on the Waverley Route. This is the period I have decided to model.

Stobs will be all about watching the trains go by.  The aim is to run a sequence of trains corresponding as closely as possible to the Working Timetable.  The track plan is essentially a "squashed dogbone", three baseboards in a U shape, with four storage loops at each end, the shortest capable of taking a Pacific and nine coaches.  Trains will run through the station in one direction, and return after a decent interval in the other, rather than just going round in circles.

It will be a while before I can start construction.  The intention is to make the whole thing light and portable with exhibitions in mind.  The scenic section will be around nine feet long.  For now I have made a start with a couple of structures.  Stobs was only a small wayside station and had few buildings, for which I have not found any scale drawings. So I am working from photographs, preparing my own scale drawings as I go along. The main structures are station house, ticket office, down platform waiting room, signal box, footbridge and viaduct. I started with the smallest and simplest of these, the ticket office.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-XcVNDGr/0/db40017f/M/DSCN2388sm-M.jpg)

All-card construction using Metcalf printed walls.The roof slates are an experiment using paper adhesive labels slotted, cut into strips and overlapped to give the correct relief effect.  They look overscale but I think another coat of paint will improve matters. Still some detailing to finish it off, but I got sidetracked by the arrival of some new solder paste and spent the holidays tackling a rather trickier structure...

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-QK4NK3w/0/1738960f/M/DSCN2422-M.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-L275dbV/0/db6a8e30/M/DSCN2424-M.jpg)

The footbridge at Stobs was made from lengths of rail bent and bolted together and still survives although in a very poor state.  My model is made from Code 40 bullhead rail, nickel silver and phosphor bronze wire all soldered together using a resistance soldering unit, with the stairs fabricated from 0.8mm balsa cut into strips.  I wouldn't like to have to do this again.

Once my eyesight has recovered I will start work on the signalbox for which I have one decent photo.  More to follow...

Richard



Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on January 02, 2019, 06:45:01 AM
That's an excellent start, Richard.  Unfortunately all the buttons have disappeared from the bottom, but you have my thanks for a very good post.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 02, 2019, 07:36:54 AM
That's an excellent start, Richard.  Unfortunately all the buttons have disappeared from the bottom, but you have my thanks for a very good post.

I was going to click "Thank you" but now I see what you mean.  I wondered why my post wasn't getting any response  :'(
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on January 02, 2019, 08:54:38 AM
What an excellent project!

You have indeed made a great start with excellent planning and modelling.  :thumbsup:

Thank you's are a work in progress!  :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on January 02, 2019, 11:36:22 AM
I always like to see small stations in a large scenic section (Dentdale springs to mind) so look forward to seeing this develop. As for your footbridge - that is a work of art :goggleeyes:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 02, 2019, 12:32:26 PM
I always like to see small stations in a large scenic section (Dentdale springs to mind) so look forward to seeing this develop. As for your footbridge - that is a work of art :goggleeyes:

For a long time I wanted to recreate Kirkby Stephen on the S&C, but that line has been modelled by so many people now that it would be hard to bring anything new to the subject. The Waverley has had far less attention so far, especially in N gauge.  I hear rumours that someone has already done Stobs in OO gauge but I haven't seen any photos.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on January 02, 2019, 06:23:07 PM
That sounds a very good project, Richard.  Lots of interesting freight working at that period.

Are you planning continuing with your '1970s products' layout?

With best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 04, 2019, 07:50:29 AM
That sounds a very good project, Richard.  Lots of interesting freight working at that period.

Are you planning continuing with your '1970s products' layout?

With best wishes.

John

I have had to shelve the retro modelling project for various reasons, mainly realising that I can actually make a start now on the layout I have always wanted to build.  There isn't enough time to do both.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on January 04, 2019, 08:32:41 AM
I have had to shelve the retro modelling project for various reasons, mainly realising that I can actually make a start now on the layout I have always wanted to build.  There isn't enough time to do both.

Richard
I thoroughly approve.  Make a start ASAP and see how you get on.  That's what I did, although it may be several years before I finish!  Don't worry about the setbacks, which will inevitably occur, it's all part of the learning process and the enjoyment comes from overcoming them.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 10, 2019, 07:50:17 AM
A little more work on what is likely to be a long, slow project:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-wXwqxQ7/0/1756d6ed/L/DSCN2448-L.jpg)

Signal box was drawn up on CAD software from old photographs, printed onto self adhesive paper and stuck over a crude foamboard shell, so I could check the size and proportions.  It looks about right to me.  The signal box at Stobs was quite small compared to most others on the route.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: keithbythe sea on January 10, 2019, 07:56:50 AM
The footbridge is fantastic.  :thankyousign:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on January 10, 2019, 08:59:29 AM
Signal box was drawn up on CAD software from old photographs, printed onto self adhesive paper and stuck over a crude foamboard shell, so I could check the size and proportions.  It looks about right to me.  The signal box at Stobs was quite small compared to most others on the route.


Looks the right proportions to me. Have you seen the images on Disused stations (http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/) , there's a good shot of the box with the bridge in the background caption 1955.

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on January 10, 2019, 09:20:54 AM
Great stuff.  :thumbsup:

My first impression was your signalbox mock-up looked a bit small, but you've obviously done your homework.

Following with interest!  :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 10, 2019, 09:24:10 AM

Looks the right proportions to me. Have you seen the images on Disused stations ([url]http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/[/url]) , there's a good shot of the box with the bridge in the background caption 1955.

Cheers
Dave


Yes, I used that to put together the end drawings, with a bit of guesswork.  I have no idea what the entrance door looks like.  Someone very kindly sent me a photo I haven't seen published of the front of the box, with the signalman leaning out of the left hand window and a porter standing in front of the box.  I have based all my dimensions on my assumption that the porter is around 5'6" tall including his hat. If he was a midget or a giant then I'm in trouble.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 18, 2019, 07:26:58 AM
Possibly the smallest layout that will ever appear on this forum:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-r8v8Gtz/0/f2e762a5/L/DSCN2451sm-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-cvQMwr2/0/b8ba3541/L/DSCN2458sm-L.jpg)

I was having trouble picturing the contours and sightlines, especially around the station which sits in a deep cutting with woods on either side.  So I knocked up this 1/12 scale model out of bits of material I had lying around.  I have aerial photographs of the station site (from 1945 and recent) and although not an accurate model this isn't a million miles off. The storage loops at each end (drawn with SCARM) are printed slightly underscale but you get the idea.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on December 29, 2019, 07:38:26 PM
The annual Stobs project report, typed while listening to one of Peter Handford's classic recordings, a knackered St Margarets V2 hammering up through Steele Road on a Carlisle-Edinburgh passenger train, more noise from the conrod bearings than the exhaust....

Embarrassingly little to report really.  I still haven't started the baseboards, but over Christmas I set to work on the signal box, embossed Plastikard over a mounting card inner shell, built from my own drawings based on a couple of photos.  Plenty still to do but it is coming on, or was until I ran out of scalpel blades.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-jpn7KQz/0/ed6f84d1/L/DSCN1421sm-L.jpg)

I have also had another look at the storage loops.  The layout was originally supposed to fit along one wall of the spare bedroom and as a result the loops used Setrack points and minimum 9" radius curves.  I've now decided to build this as a pure exhibition layout, so I have increased the board size and reworked it using large radius points and a minimum 12" radius.  The scenic section has also gained another 6" in length.

Finally I have made a start on the drawings for the station house, using 2D CAD as I did with the signalbox. There's a lot of guesswork here: I have only one very blurred photo of the north end of the building and aerial shots of the back, but I'm fairly happy with the rest.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-F7rmWsv/0/b8f1b019/L/stationcad1-L.jpg)

I am currently contemplating lighting, wondering whether blue LED light strips will give me a moonlit effect and allow me to run a full 24 hour train sequence. Hopefully it will be less than a year until the next progress report...

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 01, 2020, 11:13:48 AM
The Stobs Project just moved up a couple of gears.  Firstly I have been sent some unpublished photos of the station buildings with all kinds of details of which I was unaware - not least the presence of a cast iron Victorian urinal opposite the ticket office. I now know what the north end of the station house looks like as well.

Secondly I have just been out and picked up a large table saw, almost unused at a good price.  I will be spending New Year's Day doing CAD drawings of the baseboard components.  I'm planning to use open frame ply-beam boards ( @kirky (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=492)  I believe you used this design for Northallerton - any comments?) so I'll have a lot of components to make up - four boards, with the two end loop boards hinged for ease of transport.

The last train through Stobs (apart from track lifting trains) was an inspection saloon hauled by D5307 (class 26 diesel) on 1st April 1970.  https://www.railscot.co.uk/img/59/19/ (https://www.railscot.co.uk/img/59/19/) Will I be able to recreate that event in time for the 50th anniversary? I have the train (albeit in the wrong livery). 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Longframlington/i-KJgDXtq/0/d6986e5b/L/DSCN1151-L.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 01, 2020, 11:37:48 AM
Hi Richard
Happy new year.
I have a table saw which I rarely use these days. But itís a really useful bit of kit for doing repeat cuts and getting accurate timbers. When you make your girders, itís almost certainly best if you make a jig. Or even jigs. I made a jig to assemble the girders and get the infill pieces at the same position. Then I made a jig for assembling the girders into a frame. This was a very simple affair which held two girders at right angles whilst I screwed them together. I also made a third jig to get the three screws in line and evenly spaced on each joint although this was just to satisfy my analness.
Looking forward to progress Richard. Also looking forward to having you back in Redcar sometime.
Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 01, 2020, 07:31:13 PM
Hi Richard
Happy new year.
I have a table saw which I rarely use these days. But itís a really useful bit of kit for doing repeat cuts and getting accurate timbers. When you make your girders, itís almost certainly best if you make a jig. Or even jigs. I made a jig to assemble the girders and get the infill pieces at the same position. Then I made a jig for assembling the girders into a frame. This was a very simple affair which held two girders at right angles whilst I screwed them together. I also made a third jig to get the three screws in line and evenly spaced on each joint although this was just to satisfy my analness.
Looking forward to progress Richard. Also looking forward to having you back in Redcar sometime.
Cheers
Kirky

Thanks for that, and happy new year to you as well.  I like the idea of jigs: there will be four boards, two of which are hinged for ease of transport, and they will have to be far more accurate than any woodworking I have ever done before.  I'm still drawn to the idea of welded aluminium frames, but I want to get on now and build the layout, so I'll stick to tried and tested methods.

When I get this layout built I promise you can have it for Redcar if you want it.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 04, 2020, 12:04:39 AM
Modelling a real location is full of unforeseen horrors.  I have been working on baseboard design again this evening and realised two things:

1. The gradient through the station is 1 in 65.  I knew this.  The problem is that the goods siding is level (which makes sense when you think about it).  The difference in trackbed height between the main line and the end of the siding is quite noticeable.  So I either build the entire scenic section on a slope (which creates problems with the baseboards and also possibly haulage issues on Carlisle-bound trains) or build the layout flat, put a slope on the siding and have wagons tending to roll into the buffer stops.

2.  The four-arch viaduct (the centrepiece of the layout) is on a slight curve.  There is a continuous curve from a few hundred yards north of the viaduct to somewhere south of the station.  Bang goes my idea of cheating and using a Ratio viaduct kit.  I'll have to scratchbuild it.

First timbers will be cut for the baseboards tomorrow.  After forty years of planning and dreaming, my Waverley Route layout is finally happening.

:bounce:  :bounce:  :bounce:

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: chrispearce on January 04, 2020, 05:29:12 AM
I may be being dim but if you build the board flat in the immediate station area then the siding will be flat surely. Then you can put in your 1 in 65 gradient as normal.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 04, 2020, 07:52:11 AM
I may be being dim but if you build the board flat in the immediate station area then the siding will be flat surely. Then you can put in your 1 in 65 gradient as normal.





J

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-DDC7L8r/0/21a6bae8/L/stobs%20box%20end-L.jpg)

Just been looking at this enlargement of a photo (by A G Ellis, 1955) and it might be less of a problem than I imagined.  Look at the platform height to the left of the goods wagon.  If that was a BR box van you wouldn't be able to open the doors that side: the siding rail height is a good six inches below the running lines at this point. But what is six inches in N gauge?  1mm  ;D The gradient changes from 1 in 250 to 1 in 65 at some point around Stobs: I now reckon the gradient change is to the south of the station. Published gradient maps show the change to the north of the station.  I suspect that all the maps are wrong... So I can build the whole thing flat and put a tiny slope on the siding which shouldn't allow anything to run away.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on January 04, 2020, 08:09:56 AM
This looks fantastic, Richard.  That A G Ellis photograph is wonderful.

The Board of Trade didn't like stations on steep gradients.  It is often noticeable how a gradient eases through a station and then steepens again.

I think a slope into the siding and then the rest of the siding level will do the trick.  Owing to the location of the passenger platform, much of the difference in levels will be able to be suggested by optical illusion, taking into account the principal viewing angle.

It's wonderful to see a Waverley Route layout taking shape.  I can't see the 1:1 line from here, but I can hear the steam excursions climbing to Falahill.  One was worked by a 'Black Five' and it was particularly audible! 

I'm looking forward to seeing progress.

All best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on January 04, 2020, 08:22:53 AM
Embarrassingly, I'm just catching up with this.  :-[

Awesome stuff.  :thumbsup:

For what it's worth, my layout grew like topsy, and I put in a siding on a slope. When I realised that, I propped up the end of it with cork to level it off, and the slight change in level was pleasing to the eye when sceniced.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 04, 2020, 08:31:16 AM

The Board of Trade didn't like stations on steep gradients.  It is often noticeable how a gradient eases through a station and then steepens again.




Slightly off topic but there was a nasty accident at Stobs in 1871 when a goods train being shunted at Shankend ran away down the bank and collided with another goods train approaching Stobs.  Lt Col Hutchinson was not impressed by the practice of fly-shunting wagons on a steeply graded main line.

http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/BoT_Stobs1871.pdf (http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/documents/BoT_Stobs1871.pdf)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 04, 2020, 10:16:12 PM
I spent a couple of hours today cutting 6mm plywood into 3" strips and chopping up softwood into 3" square blocks ready to start making up the beams for the baseboard frames.  But a big pile of bits of wood isn't really very interesting to look at, so here's something else instead.  I printed out the track plan full-size in Templot, stuck all the sheets together with sticky tape and laid them out on the railway room floor with my half-finished buildings and a few bits of rolling stock. 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-tvzGb48/0/5b743a34/L/DSCN1422-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-RNf36R4/0/898f4286/L/DSCN1424-L.jpg)

That's an eight coach train in the first two photos.  Bear in mind that the baseboards will be 2'6" wide with most of the depth behind the line itself and you can start to maybe get a feel for the sense of space I am aiming for.  The loco is just short of the start of the viaduct.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-647XSpX/0/527703ce/L/DSCN1434-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-PdSWHwf/0/21a33e1e/L/DSCN1430-L.jpg)

A typical Carlisle-Edinburgh formation: type 2 diesel, four coaches and a parcels van. Back edge of the baseboard will be about where that stripey box is. 

It will probably take me a couple of weeks to get all the baseboard components ready to assemble, mainly due to a shortage of G clamps.  I can only make up two beams at a time, then I have to clamp them and leave the glue to set for 24 hours. But I've made a start anyway.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 05, 2020, 10:25:32 AM
Good start Richard. Like trains, you can never have too many clamps!
So presumably Stobs will be in Finetrax N gauge but built to NMRA standards? I would imagine you'll reuse some of the stock from Longframlington?
I've been looking on Google Earth and Stobs is not a familiar place to me - I'm struggling to see the route of the line. Any chance of a map or two?
Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 05, 2020, 11:01:05 AM
Good start Richard. Like trains, you can never have too many clamps!
So presumably Stobs will be in Finetrax N gauge but built to NMRA standards? I would imagine you'll reuse some of the stock from Longframlington?
I've been looking on Google Earth and Stobs is not a familiar place to me - I'm struggling to see the route of the line. Any chance of a map or two?
Cheers
Kirky


In some ways it is a step backwards - Finetrax, but with 7.45mm back to back and larger crossing clearances.  The reason is there is only one turnout in the scenic section and around fifteen in the storage loops.  All the storage loop track will be Peco Streamline to save time, and Peco points aren't happy with a 7.65mm back to back setting.  Also I don't fancy having to regauge a load of Pacifics, V2s etc. 

I'll be salvaging a couple of locos from Longframlington - B1 and BRCW type 2 for certain, possibly the J39 and J35.  There is however another problem which is that I will probably be going DCC for various reasons, and my older oddball locos don't really have room to install a chip easily. I already have tucked away in a drawer an A1, A2, A3 and V2, all picked up cheap at various times for this project.  All except the V2 are DCC-ready.

Some useful links:

http://disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/index.shtml (http://disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/index.shtml)
https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/350500/609700/10/101324 (https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/350500/609700/10/101324)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on January 05, 2020, 11:23:10 AM
Good start Richard. Like trains, you can never have too many clamps!
So presumably Stobs will be in Finetrax N gauge but built to NMRA standards? I would imagine you'll reuse some of the stock from Longframlington?
I've been looking on Google Earth and Stobs is not a familiar place to me - I'm struggling to see the route of the line. Any chance of a map or two?
Cheers
Kirky


In some ways it is a step backwards - Finetrax, but with 7.45mm back to back and larger crossing clearances.  The reason is there is only one turnout in the scenic section and around fifteen in the storage loops.  All the storage loop track will be Peco Streamline to save time, and Peco points aren't happy with a 7.65mm back to back setting.  Also I don't fancy having to regauge a load of Pacifics, V2s etc. 

I'll be salvaging a couple of locos from Longframlington - B1 and BRCW type 2 for certain, possibly the J39 and J35.  There is however another problem which is that I will probably be going DCC for various reasons, and my older oddball locos don't really have room to install a chip easily. I already have tucked away in a drawer an A1, A2, A3 and V2, all picked up cheap at various times for this project.  All except the V2 are DCC-ready.

Some useful links:

[url]http://disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/index.shtml[/url] ([url]http://disused-stations.org.uk/s/stobs/index.shtml[/url])
[url]https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/350500/609700/10/101324[/url] ([url]https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/350500/609700/10/101324[/url])

Richard


Hi Richard

It is all looking really good so far. As one familiar with station and surroundings from my various books on the Waverley Route, I am able to mentally fill in the blanks, and visualise the completed station, it really does have the right feel proportionately, and I can't wait to see some more progress.

You may be interested to know that DCC of the V2 can be done very simply by stripping out motor and internals including the idler gear from the loco and adding a B1 tender drive with DCC socket, no wiring needed, it is almost like it was designed for it. It benefits from the much stronger pulling power of the tender drive and is all totally reversible.

Regards

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 05, 2020, 11:33:20 AM
All except the V2 are DCC-ready.
Richard
Does that mean?..... no, surely you arent going DCC.... :D
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 05, 2020, 11:54:11 AM
Thanks for the links Richard. Ive found it now. Pretty much hidden in the trees these days. Found the viaduct on street view though - you can beat a good viaduct.
Cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 05, 2020, 12:57:12 PM
All except the V2 are DCC-ready.
Richard
Does that mean?..... no, surely you arent going DCC.... :D

I think so.  Several reasons:

1.  Directional control:  having the direction switch relate to the loco rather than the layout is a real pain for a branch terminus where engines can arrive facing either way round.  For a main line, especially the "dogbone" design I am using here, it's an advantage.  Chimney-first is always forward.  DCC also solves some electrical problems with operating banking locos on Up goods trains (yes, I will be trying to recreate this aspect of Waverley operations).

2. I'm thinking I might want carriage lighting, in line with my plan to come up with "simulated moonlight" layout lighting so I can run a 24 hour train sequence. Working tail lights would also be nice, perhaps.

3.  I'm taking a gamble on the quality of DCC steam sound improving over the next few years.  At the moment it is pretty dire (in my humble opinion) but it was those Peter Handford recordings of V2s slogging up the long climb to Whitrope that drew me to the Waverley in the first place.  I want sound at some point.  I have thought about using underboard speakers and faders, but dismissed that as too complicated to operate.

4. DCC is rapidly becoming the norm for train control in N gauge.  I'm not the only person out there modelling this line, and it would be nice to be able to run other people's locos on Stobs.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 05, 2020, 01:03:03 PM

Hi Richard

It is all looking really good so far. As one familiar with station and surroundings from my various books on the Waverley Route, I am able to mentally fill in the blanks, and visualise the completed station, it really does have the right feel proportionately, and I can't wait to see some more progress.

You may be interested to know that DCC of the V2 can be done very simply by stripping out motor and internals including the idler gear from the loco and adding a B1 tender drive with DCC socket, no wiring needed, it is almost like it was designed for it. It benefits from the much stronger pulling power of the tender drive and is all totally reversible.

Regards

Roy

I thought you'd like this layout Roy.  Loco haulage power is one of the things that is bothering me.  The V2 is notoriously feeble.  I was thinking of using a Farish B1 tender drive in a V2 but keeping the loco motorised as well, and buying a Union Mills tender drive unit to power the B1.  I need to test the Pacifics and see what they will pull: there should be scope to get a bit more weight into them.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 05, 2020, 01:14:15 PM
All very interesting of course Richard.
As a long time user of DCC I completely concur with your reasoning.
I wonder what system you'll go for - Merg CBus/DCC? Or as an alternatively cheap system DCC++ built on an arduino is cool but you need to use a computer and probably a phone as a controller.
Cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 05, 2020, 07:57:27 PM
I seem to have bits of modelling going on all over the place at the moment.  Here's today's unfinished project - the viaduct which sits right in the middle of the scenic area.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-gbBLpbp/0/7eada69d/L/DSCN1436-L.jpg)

As mentioned above the viaduct is slightly curved: the entire visible section of the layout is on a continuous 15 foot radius curve. Without the combination of Templot and DraftSight (free 2D CAD software) I would have really struggled to get the dimensions right: as it is I have ended up with two viaduct sides, one 4mm longer than the other.  This were drawn onto mounting board and the arches cut out with a scalpel.  I had a frantic hunt round the house for something exactly 64mm diameter to mark out the arches: in the end I used a jar containing a scented candle, so my viaduct smells faintly of lavender.  I used Templot to print out the appropriate bit of track to make a template for the base: this is a card / balsa laminate, purely because I didn't have one sheet of balsa big enough to cut it in one piece so I ended up gluing bits of balsa together and added the card for a bit of strength.

The whole thing is designed to work exactly the opposite way from a real viaduct: it will hang from the underside of the 9mm ply trackbed and will carry no weight at all.  I will be using a variety of embossed Plastikard to clad the basic card / balsa structure: the upper section is large dressed stone blocks, the piers are smaller irregular stone and at the moment I have no idea what the underside of the arches is made of.

I have cheated on the dimensions a bit due to space limitations: it is slightly shorter than scale and not quite as tall.  The proportions should not be too far off though.  Anyway the area is now so overgrown with trees that it is hard to see what the viaduct looks like, so I doubt anyone will pull me up on it.

I'd forgotten how much fun it is starting a new layout.  So much to think about.  @kirky (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=492) : no idea what kind of DCC control I will use yet, I need to look into it.  The main requirement is a rotary knob for speed control rather than flappy paddles or buttons.  It's a model railway, not a Playstation.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 05, 2020, 09:06:42 PM
@belstone (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=2569)
I thought you might say you want a knob on your controller. Then definitely for you is the Merg CBUS/DCC controller. You donít of course have to use CBUS, you can just use the dcc controller part of it. The handset can be operated with one (left) hand. Iíve built the controller and a couple of handsets. Itís a nice project. Cost of controller and handset is about 70 quid. You might need a booster since you are using sound. Add another thirty quid. Youíll enjoy the build. All of course IMHO.
Cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 12, 2020, 12:19:10 PM
A little bit of progress on the most important structure for the "big layout":

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-5pLZmSm/0/21b1a3dd/L/DSCN1457sm-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-hjRmfD6/0/d278a9a8/L/DSCN1459sm-L.jpg)

Barns Viaduct is coming along steadily.  Construction is basically embossed Plastikard overlays on a mounting card inner structure.  The real viaduct had the upper structure made of large, regularly shaped stone blocks sitting on whinstone rubble piers.  The tricky bit is the irregular stone around the edge of the arches:  I have filled this area with DAS modelling clay and will scribe the stones individually once the clay has set.

I have meanwhile found a few more good photos from which I can see I have made the arches slightly too narrow and the piers too wide.  I could start again, but I don't think the proportions on my viaduct look wrong:  it's only when I compare it with photos of the real thing that I can see where I have gone wrong.

Elsewhere I have been plugging away at baseboard construction.  I now have the ply beams assembled for the two main boards but ran into problems with the ends.  I was going to use 12mm ply and pattern makers dowels for alignment, but the ply isn't flat and rigid enough and my attempts to install the dowels just reminded me that I can't do accurate woodworking.  So I've had a rethink and now have a revised design to try.  Hopefully next weekend I will get the two main boards assembled and able to be joined together.

I went to the Chiltern MRC show at Stevenage yesterday and was much inspired by "Little Salkeld" which is very similar to Stobs in its whole approach to N gauge modelling.  It is a beautiful layout and if I can get half way to that quality I will be a happy man.

Back to work now and I'll see if I can get the signalbox glazed while the DAS clay is drying on the viaduct.

Richard

P.S. @kirky (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=492)  congratulations for appearing in RM with some of the Northallerton crew.  I had a long chat yesterday with a chap who was exhibiting a 2mm FS layout and was using the MERG DCC controller.  He liked it a lot, and the slow speed control was impressive.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 12, 2020, 01:39:37 PM
@belstone (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=2569)
Ive used something like this in the past https://www.stationroadbaseboards.co.uk/cart_dowels.htm (https://www.stationroadbaseboards.co.uk/cart_dowels.htm) - the bullet type dowels that is, not the pattern makes ones. Fitting is fairly straight forward oif I remeber correctly. Fit the female parts and then clamp the two ends together, drill straight through the female ends with a pilot drill into the male board (we used parts with small holes in the end of the female bit so a pilot hole can be drilled.. Unclamp and use the pilot hole as the guide for fitting the male part. Use a  spare female bit to hammer home the male part. Maybe use a boit of pva to secure.

Yep, the cbus system is undoubtedly good - did you get to have a paly with that? Its certainly a comprehensive system for under a £100 - ypou just have to build it!

Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 12, 2020, 01:49:54 PM
@belstone (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=2569)
Ive used something like this in the past https://www.stationroadbaseboards.co.uk/cart_dowels.htm (https://www.stationroadbaseboards.co.uk/cart_dowels.htm) - the bullet type dowels that is, not the pattern makes ones. Fitting is fairly straight forward oif I remeber correctly. Fit the female parts and then clamp the two ends together, drill straight through the female ends with a pilot drill into the male board (we used parts with small holes in the end of the female bit so a pilot hole can be drilled.. Unclamp and use the pilot hole as the guide for fitting the male part. Use a  spare female bit to hammer home the male part. Maybe use a boit of pva to secure.

Yep, the cbus system is undoubtedly good - did you get to have a paly with that? Its certainly a comprehensive system for under a £100 - you just have to build it!

Cheers
Kirky

I've seen those dowels but I have something more industrial in mind.  I have large quantities of shelf supports, right angled steel with 8mm holes at regular (and very accurate) intervals.  The plan is to weld two bolts to one piece, which will be glued and screwed to the back of the end board.  A plain piece of angle will then be attached to the corresponding end, providing for alignment and clamping (via wing nuts) and also stiffening up the wooden ends.  It is similar to the system I used for Longfram, which has worked very well.  I think I was trying to be too clever with the pattern makers dowels.

I didn't get the chance to actually try the controller but it looks like it will do everything I want.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 12, 2020, 01:59:51 PM
I've seen those dowels but I have something more industrial in mind.  I have large quantities of shelf supports, right angled steel with 8mm holes at regular (and very accurate) intervals.  The plan is to weld two bolts to one piece, which will be glued and screwed to the back of the end board.  A plain piece of angle will then be attached to the corresponding end, providing for alignment and clamping (via wing nuts) and also stiffening up the wooden ends.  It is similar to the system I used for Longfram, which has worked very well.  I think I was trying to be too clever with the pattern makers dowels.

I didn't get the chance to actually try the controller but it looks like it will do everything I want.

Richard
Ah yes, the under base board connection system, Im sure that will be more than adequate.

You should give a Merg handset a go Richard. Its not to everyones' taste, but I like the left thumb controller, meanimng your right hand is free to do whatever. Its a clever ergonomic design. I think the slow control is probably as much to do with the way the decoder is set up.
I like the viaduct bytheway - I really love bridges on layouts.
cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 15, 2020, 10:51:26 PM
Running night at the club, so I took along my small collection of Waverley Route locos for some haulage tests.  Maximum train lengths on this layout will be 9 coaches / 35 wagons and some fairly tight curves (down to 12") in the storage loops.  The club has a layout with a long oval and tight curves, so I assembled a 10 coach train (Farish Mk1s and Dapol Gresleys) and tried various locos.

Dapol A3 - fine, no problems.

Farish V2 - slipped to a standstill but I was expecting that. This model is not known for its pulling power. I'm looking at adding tender drive (using a Farish B1 tender) and keeping the loco drive as well, which should give plenty of grunt if it works.

Farish A2 - non runner, dead short in the tender drive somewhere.

Farish A1 - loose screws in the valve gear, so I swapped the tender for the A2 one. Wouldn't pull the skin off a rice pudding, even the V2 did better.  I haven't yet had a look to see if there is a fault in the tender drive. I bought this one second hand and possibly the traction tyres have oil on them.

Farish N class (proposed chassis donor for a K3) - awesome.  Handled 10 coaches with ease which I absolutely was not expecting.  For a model which weighs so little it really is quite remarkably sure-footed.

And finally, my recently revived 1967-made Minitrix Class 27 - best performance of all.  Would probably handle 20 coaches.  Diesels work so much better than steam in N gauge, even diesels that are older than me.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: chrispearce on January 15, 2020, 11:17:10 PM
I was reading the other night about the wonderfully-named 'Bullfrog Snot'.  :goggleeyes: It does improve traction on weedy locos I hear. Ever tried it?
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on January 16, 2020, 12:03:38 AM
I've been aware of it for a long while. Never used it, but I've read conflicting reports.

I'm probably going too far bundling it in with stuff like WD-40, but I'm always wary of products like these.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: chrispearce on January 16, 2020, 12:13:45 AM
From what I've read if applied carefully to a spinning wheel it can replace lost/worn traction tyres really well. I have also heard it greatly improves traction and can 'breathe new life' into a lack-lustre loco. I haven't used it myself but do have some locos which new traction tyres and was considering getting some.

I'll probably buy it online rather than take a wander to the village pond with some pepper and a plastic bag.  :sick2:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Paddy on January 16, 2020, 12:43:36 PM
Shame modern manufacturers cannot get the haulage qualities that Minitrix achieved 40+ years ago...

Kind regards

Paddy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 16, 2020, 05:01:05 PM
Farish V2 - slipped to a standstill but I was expecting that. This model is not known for its pulling power. I'm looking at adding tender drive (using a Farish B1 tender) and keeping the loco drive as well, which should give plenty of grunt if it works.
Richard
This will be interesting in DCC. Its unlikely that youll get two matched motors and therefore will no doubt need two decoders since you are going dcc. So the decoder in the B1 tender is easy - its already got a socket and space. But the V2 doesnt have da dcc socket - I cant remember if its a can motor or not? If it is, its an easier conversion but you still need to find space for that decoder which you might have hidden in the tender if it was just one motor.
And then you have to run it as a consist. And with two unmatched motors this takes a bit of doing. Good fun though.
Looking forward to the results.
Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 16, 2020, 11:05:50 PM

This will be interesting in DCC. Its unlikely that youll get two matched motors and therefore will no doubt need two decoders since you are going dcc. So the decoder in the B1 tender is easy - its already got a socket and space. But the V2 doesnt have da dcc socket - I cant remember if its a can motor or not? If it is, its an easier conversion but you still need to find space for that decoder which you might have hidden in the tender if it was just one motor.
And then you have to run it as a consist. And with two unmatched motors this takes a bit of doing. Good fun though.
Looking forward to the results.
Cheers
Kirky

Both locos look to have the same 8 x 16 can motor, and I'm hoping the speed of the two is close enough that I can run them off a single chip, with two wires connecting the front motor in parallel with the rear one.  Otherwise I'll have to do as you suggest which will start getting expensive.  But Stobs without a V2 would be like Burns Night without haggis.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on January 17, 2020, 08:04:09 AM
I will watch with interest. Ive not done that, run two motors from one chip, although should be possible. I dont think cost should be that much of a problem - £10 for Laisdcc decoder? Of courdse you could be looking at super small decoders to fit inside that V2 shell. Im excited by the entire project...

good luck Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on January 17, 2020, 09:38:01 AM
I honestly don't think it necessary to double up on the motors (albeit an interesting project from a technical challenge perspective). My black V2, now tender driven and DCC, comfortably (if somewhat un-prototypically) manages the 35 wagon "Windcutter" empties on Rugby Central. I chose the black one because to me the horrible boiler skirt is far less obvious than on the green ones.

It would be so good if a new tool one follows the new 00 one, I think it is fairly well known that the one that got released in N has at least some of it's development history in the Poole era, and a new coreless motor loco drive one sound fitted would be simply mind-blowing (to me anyway - I have a sound fitted A2 already and the three cylinder beat is unmistakeable).

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 17, 2020, 09:54:31 AM
I honestly don't think it necessary to double up on the motors (albeit an interesting project from a technical challenge perspective). My black V2, now tender driven and DCC, comfortably (if somewhat un-prototypically) manages the 35 wagon "Windcutter" empties on Rugby Central. I chose the black one because to me the horrible boiler skirt is far less obvious than on the green ones.

It would be so good if a new tool one follows the new 00 one, I think it is fairly well known that the one that got released in N has at least some of it's development history in the Poole era, and a new coreless motor loco drive one sound fitted would be simply mind-blowing (to me anyway - I have a sound fitted A2 already and the three cylinder beat is unmistakeable).

Roy

Farish will announce a new-tooling V2 about a month after I have completely reworked mine. I've heard mixed reports about the pulling power of the B1 tender drive. IIRC there is a bit of scope to add more weight by replacing the ally/zinc cast ballast weight with shaped lead, ditto the cast coal load.   Possibly one advantage of removing the motor from the loco would be that I could rework the body and get rid of the skirt.  You're right, it looks terrible. It also opens up the possibility of fitting a speaker inside the loco. 

I really want sound on this layout but I've listened to a couple of "sound project" recordings for V2s and they sound nothing like the well-used St Mags examples that Peter Handford captured on tape back in 1961. "Making a noise like a jazz band" as one photographer described it. I know nothing at all about DCC sound: I wonder how easy it would be to use a Handford recording as the basis for a V2 sound chip.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 19, 2020, 08:46:25 PM
I have been bumbling along this weekend on various projects trying to get something finished so I can tidy up the workbench a bit.  The viaduct is coming along steadily but at some point I will have to tackle the handrails which are a little daunting.  I suspect I'll end up soldering them together from nickel silver wire just to make them reasonably strong. 

Meanwhile I thought I would get the signalbox finished.  One of the hardest things in modelling in my experience is to put hours of work into something, look at it and be able to honestly admit to yourself that it isn't good enough and needs doing again.  I made two mistakes with the signalbox early on.  One was that the windows were fractionally too small, which I decided I could live with at the time.  The other was that I didn't give enough thought as to how I was going to glaze the thing.  I cut the window apertures in the card sides the same size as the Plastikard overlays.  I have used Metcalfe printed window frames just because I have loads of them: I thought I could glue them to thick clear plastic using Uhu, cut them exactly to size to fit the window apertures and then use Sellotape to hold them in place.  The end result was rubbish: not only were they wonky but you couldn't see through them which was a shame as the signalbox has a detailed interior and LED lighting.

How to fix this without starting again from scratch?  I decided to just deal with the windows at the front as the ones at the ends didn't look too bad and aren't really visible from normal viewing angles.  I started by making up a new upper front section with Plastikard windowframes glued to the back.  This was then painted.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-NxnwH3r/0/b6dabe45/L/DSCN1460-L.jpg)

Time to be brave:  I removed the upper cladding from the front of the signalbox then cut a large aperture for the backs of the windows.  The signalman seems unbothered by the disruption and is attending to his block instruments.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-GjWPf3k/0/6734b420/L/DSCN1464-L.jpg)

New front glazed and glued in place, various other bits and pieces done and the whole thing weathered.  I still have to add gutters and downpipes, a nameboard and a couple of other little bits, but basically it's done.  The box will be platform mounted, hence the stairs suspended in mid-air.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-JfcG5RS/0/e9076e8b/L/DSCN1473-L.jpg)

This gives a little idea of how it will be positioned on the platform, next to the footbridge which I built a year ago.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-RSppc2d/0/f1a5108d/L/DSCN1470-L.jpg)

Next job will probably be to construct the one and only turnout in the scenic section. After that, baseboards. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on January 19, 2020, 09:44:35 PM
The signalman seems unbothered by the disruption and is attending to his block instruments.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-GjWPf3k/0/6734b420/L/DSCN1464-L.jpg)


What is the world coming to? You turn your back for one moment and...................... :o
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 22, 2020, 12:12:24 PM
A bit more experimentation last night.  I ordered some colour-changing LED light strips off Ebay (£6.99 inc postage) and stuck them to the lighting bar on Longframlington to see what they did.  Very interesting, the blue LEDs gave me just the kind of moonlit night effect I was looking for.  Playing around with reds and oranges gave me a nice dawn / dusk effect, but the white LEDs weren't bright enough for normal daytime illumination. Word of warning: do not switch off the room lights and then try to view the layout in darkness under pure red LED lighting.  It does weird things to your head.

So my theory, that I could simulate night-time with blue LED lighting, is basically sound, but I'm a long way from having a workable solution for layout lighting.  Ideally I want to be able to integrate various coloured LEDs with the bright white ones, on a single fader control so I can shift the lighting progressively from day to night and back.  Dimming the LEDs in itself shouldn't be an issue: I have a couple of high frequency PWM controllers left over from previous experiments which should take care of that side of things.  The problem is integrating four different strings of dimmable LEDs, each with a different fade pattern (which needs to be adjustable so I can play around until I get the colour balance right), into a single control knob or slider.  Or even better, a single push button that shifts the lighting slowly from night to day or vice versa over a time period of say a couple of minutes. This is way beyond my knowledge of electronics at the moment. 

I will also need to try and limit the ambient light reaching the layout from overhead lighting at exhibition venues, probably by having some kind of top cover which overhangs the layout at the front to shield it.  As far as possible the layout needs to be lit with the LEDs rather than room lighting or daylight.  This kind of theatrical lighting is something I haven't seen a lot of at exhibitions.  If I can make it work it will be awesome: a moonlit night with the signalbox, platform lamps, waiting room and signals illuminated, working head and tail lamps, carriage lighting and maybe even a bit of firebox glow on DCC if I can squeeze a couple of LEDs in behind the backhead on the big Pacifics.  Add sound effects to the mix (locos and background) and there will be an awful lot going on for a simple little through station with only one goods siding.

Meanwhile construction has started on the giant D10 semi-curved turnout that leads to the goods siding.  The geometry is dictated by it being on a very large radius left hand curve, and it will make a Peco large radius turnout look like Setrack.  I'm playing around with 2mm Association etched chairplates at the moment, trying to get the construction technique right.  As it is the only turnout I need to build I can afford to take my time over it.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 22, 2020, 01:44:35 PM
A quick bit of Google research over lunch: it seems I can run the lighting off a laptop using a DMX driver, MagicQ software and dongle.  The information came from this very interesting thread on layout lighting: https://www.blue-room.org.uk/index.php?showtopic=66806 (https://www.blue-room.org.uk/index.php?showtopic=66806)  As so often, I find the hobby taking me into a whole new area that I knew nothing about.  It's one of the reasons I love railway modelling.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on January 22, 2020, 03:31:46 PM
I will also need to try and limit the ambient light reaching the layout from overhead lighting at exhibition venues, probably by having some kind of top cover which overhangs the layout at the front to shield it.  As far as possible the layout needs to be lit with the LEDs rather than room lighting or daylight.  This kind of theatrical lighting is something I haven't seen a lot of at exhibitions.  If I can make it work it will be awesome: a moonlit night with the signalbox, platform lamps, waiting room and signals illuminated, working head and tail lamps, carriage lighting and maybe even a bit of firebox glow on DCC if I can squeeze a couple of LEDs in behind the backhead on the big Pacifics.  Add sound effects to the mix (locos and background) and there will be an awful lot going on for a simple little through station with only one goods siding.

Richard
For their layout 'Wickwar' the Farnham and District MRS N gauge group played about with a mix of warm white and bright white LEDS to get somthing that looked more like natural outdoor light, it really makes a difference.

If you are ever at an exhibition where Wickwar is on show I suggest you take a look and ask one of the operators to explain (and show you) the mix of LED strips installed under the pelmet.

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 23, 2020, 10:11:31 AM

Richard
For their layout 'Wickwar' the Farnham and District MRS N gauge group played about with a mix of warm white and bright white LEDS to get somthing that looked more like natural outdoor light, it really makes a difference.

If you are ever at an exhibition where Wickwar is on show I suggest you take a look and ask one of the operators to explain (and show you) the mix of LED strips installed under the pelmet.

Cheers
Dave

Thanks for that.  I had a quick look at the FDMRS website and they are doing the same thing I want to do - fading from daylight to moonlight using coloured LEDs.  They don't seem to feel the need to shield the layout from overhead lighting, looking at the photos.

Wickwar was already on my radar: there is an article in the latest 2mm Assoc journal about how the baseboards are constructed using thin ply and Styrofoam.  It's a pity I didn't read it before I started building mine, although I could always use the beams I have constructed for the storage loop boards and try Wickwar-style construction for the scenic boards.  It looks like a very good way to get a light, rigid structure.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on January 26, 2020, 10:36:18 PM
A weekend of insanely fiddly trackbuilding, resulting in one turnout and one catch point.  I'm glad I'm modelling Stobs and not Shankend which had a proper goods yard and a crossover as well.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-FsRW2F7/0/545e1704/L/DSCN1489-L.jpg)

The long turnout (shown here with a large radius Peco turnout for comparison) is built much the same way as the last three I did for "Longframlington", i.e. a soldered PCB skeleton for strength, with plastic sleepers and chairs filling in the gaps.  This time I used 2mm Association etched chairs on the PCB sleepers, which are very tricky indeed to bend to shape: about one in four ended up in the bin.  The plastic chairs are Finetrax with the locating pips cut off. 

The catch point is a cut down Finetrax A5 turnout which I was given a while ago, I think by someone on here although I cannot remember who. I suspect it was a very early example and the milled base had a slight right hand curve in it: absolutely perfect for its intended location.  I still have to add tiebars to both points: these will be the same under-track units I developed for Longfram, which have proved themselves reliable in exhibition use and are discreet almost to the point of being invisible.

As a bit of light relaxation when the turnouts got just too fiddly I have been assembling lengths of Finetrax flexi track using the jig as shown below:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ndKB6Rq/0/ada10f5c/L/DSCN1480-L.jpg)

A very handy piece of kit.  The flexi track comes in kit form: 500mm lengths of rail, and panels of six sleepers.  The jig takes four panels at a time, holding them in alignment so the rails can be easily slid through the chairs.  It's a nice easy job provided you deburr the rail ends and get the rails the right way up: the upper side (the running surface) is slightly larger than the lower.  The rails will fit the chairs upside-down but sliding them through is hard work so you soon realise if you have got it wrong.

Meanwhile the viaduct is coming along steadily although I'm still putting off doing those handrails.  Hoping to put the baseboards together next weekend by which time I should have all my track ready to go down.  I have been thinking about trackbed materials: after the problems I have had with cork and especially balsa I have ordered some 1mm closed cell foam sheet to experiment with.  The problem with the Finetrax is that it is thoroughly flexible in all planes and will faithfully reproduce any imperfections in the surface on which it is laid.  Peco Streamline is much more tolerant of small lumps and bumps in the baseboard.

I'm still hoping to run a train on 1st April (50th anniversary of the last train through Stobs apart from tracklifting trains) but there is an awful lot to do between now and then. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 01, 2020, 06:10:07 PM
Here we go: I reckon that a layout exists once you have some baseboards.  This morning I cleared some space in the workshop, set to work assembling the frames and remembered how much I hate woodworking.  Wood is a treacherous and fickle material.  It's very good for making trees from but that's about all the credit I will give it.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-wSs9pNn/0/95fd7ec2/L/DSCN1515-L.jpg)

However it wasn't too long before I was back in familiar territory, wielding angle grinder and MIG welder to make the connecting plates which join, align and strengthen the ends of the boards. 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ztD4xQG/0/6139b859/L/DSCN1517-L.jpg)

The result of this morning's work - the two open frame boards for the scenic section.  Trackbed still to be added, along with a bit of bracing.  I'm a bit worried at how flexible the boards turned out: hopefully things will improve when the glue has set.  I suspect it will need a fair bit of extra bracing.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-krrWgW2/0/531553f3/L/DSCN1518-L.jpg)

The long bits at each end are actually the side members for the storage loop boards which will attach to the scenic boards at right angles.  The boards themselves will be conventional ply box construction.

Tomorrow I will hopefully acquire a couple of 4x2 sheets of 9mm ply, then mark out and cut the trackbed ready to attach to the frames.  I'm trying to work out the best way to brace the trackbed to keep it flat - possibly some battens underneath with spacer blocks.  I don't want to just attach battens direct to the underside of the trackbed as they will get in the way of the dropper wires.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 02, 2020, 05:47:48 PM
Another bit of wood.  Track plan drawn in Templot, printed full size and glued to a sheet of 9mm ply using PVA glue applied with a radiator roller.  Even with an ultra thin layer of glue the paper still cockled up in places but the actual trackbed is flat enough.  The viaduct is positioned roughly where it will go on the layout, close to the join between the two boards.  Next job is to mark out the edges of the trackbed (including station platforms) then cut out the two trackbed sections with a jigsaw.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-kjSxMXf/0/69e6c675/L/DSCN1521-L.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 03, 2020, 10:08:54 AM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-GfRNsB8/0/a0548040/L/DSCN1523-L.jpg)

Feeling a bit down this morning  :(  I've checked the baseboard frames and even though the glue has now set they still have an outrageous lack of rigidity.  They don't bend lengthways, but they twist with minimum effort.  They are heavier than I expected as well.  Maybe I was expecting too much from the ply-beam construction.  I haven't built open top baseboards before.  I'm not quite sure how I can brace these up enough to make them properly rigid without the bracing getting in the way of the landscaping, and also making the boards too heavy to handle.

I might try running a beam across the back with diagonal braces downwards onto the crossbeams. The gound will slope up quite sharply towards the back, so provided I keep everything below trackbed level that should work OK.  Whether it will be strong enough is another matter.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 04, 2020, 07:25:33 AM
Viaduct is almost ready for paint.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-QJvrnLs/0/e4acf9dc/L/DSCN1525-L.jpg)

It's not perfect but I think it captures the general appearance of the thing.  Handrails are some 3D printed items I found on eBay.  They are a bit overscale thickness but nice and strong: painted mid-grey they should be fairly inconspicuous.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on February 04, 2020, 07:44:18 AM
Richard, stop worrying.

It's bloody brilliant, mate.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 04, 2020, 08:11:33 AM
Richard, stop worrying.

It's bloody brilliant, mate.  :thumbsup:

Thanks for your kind words.  I'm quite excited now this project is starting to come together.  I've wanted to model the Waverley Route since I was a teenager but never had the space for it until now. Stobs has really got its hooks into me: I must have spent hours studying photos looking for details to include. It wasn't a popular place for photographers so I'm having to make a little material go a long way.  Luckily the viaduct has survived so I had some good photos of it to work on.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on February 04, 2020, 08:20:06 AM
Well just comparing it to the picture in the book above, it's gold. Awesome work.  :beers:

That picture shows an interesting freight consist, too, by the way.  :thumbsup:

Your fencing on the bridge will be totally acceptable.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on February 04, 2020, 10:01:09 AM
That picture shows an interesting freight consist, too, by the way.  :thumbsup:

Bealman,

What makes you describe it as interesting? I'm modelling the Waverley Route too and that consist does not look unusual to my eyes. Am I taking something for granted?

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 04, 2020, 10:08:26 AM
I'm modelling the Waverley Route too

Fancy being part of the operating team for Stobs when I get it on the show circuit around 2022?
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 04, 2020, 08:38:33 PM
Big problems with the baseboards.  I've added a fair bit of extra bracing and they still wobble like a jelly.  Admittedly the joints are glued and screwed and the glue hasn't set yet, but I'm not confident.  I could keep adding extra braces, stiffeners etc but the weight is creeping up all the time, and if the basic design was sound they wouldn't need a load of extra bits and pieces added on.

It occurs to me (drawing on my motor vehicle experience) that I'm basically building a ladder frame chassis here.  There are two ways to stop such a chassis twisting: a big cruciform brace in the middle, and deep box section crossmembers.  I think the problem with my boards is the crossmembers.  They are ply beam construction, same as the side members, and twist quite easily under load.  At the moment I'm thinking of replacing them with square box section crossmembers made from 6mm ply over softwood formers.  I can (I think) do this without having to write off all the work I have already done. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 05, 2020, 12:31:21 PM
Baseboard-wise I am now officially in the poo.  After further thought I decided box-section crossmembers would be less useful than extra bracing. I added a large cruciform brace to the board I have been trying to strengthen.  Much better, but still a fair bit of twist which seemed to be coming from the ends.  I added triangular braces to the ends, and a couple more bits elsewhere.  The weight has now doubled from 7 to 14kg with all the bracing, and the thing still flexes.  As you can see from the photo I have got to the stage where I have given up trying to make everything neat and square underneath, and once you get to that stage it is often better to give up and start again.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Rf2hw9H/0/50ea3251/L/DSCN1536-L.jpg)

I'm still not sure what exactly I have done wrong here.  We are not talking about a huge amount of flexibility, but Stobs is being built as a pure exhibition layout. I haven't got room to put up the whole thing with storage loops at home, so even testing will mean transporting the boards to my workshop.  I don't want to be able to twist the boards by hand even fractionally as any movement will cause problems over time with track and scenery..  Maybe I am asking too much.  I have used well-established constructional methods, all joints glued and screwed etc etc.  Perhaps boards built using the Barry Norman ply-beam method always flex a bit.

Back to the drawing board. I am going to forget everything I have read about baseboard construction and start from first principles, looking at frames used in other application such as motorsport, where torsional rigidity is critical.  I need a strong, light, utterly rigid subframe on which the layout will sit.  I'm tempted by the ply-skinned Styrofoam system used on Wickwar and elsewhere, but have nagging doubts about its long-term stability.

Grrr.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on February 05, 2020, 12:42:13 PM
Richard,

Here's my approach to baseboards. Now these are heavy because I don't plan to exhibit my layout, and I learn't the hard way that baseboards like these (as used on Basingstoke) are real back breakers.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/3779/11433910943_8cbcd1bf0d_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/iqnMnz)

But the depth of the frame is what stops the board twisting, quite literally two of us have tried to twist the baseboards corner to corner and there is no movement. With Basingstoke there were also diagonal braces on each board to tie opposite corners together.

Also this is a fiddle yard board so has a flat top glued and screwed to the frame. For scenic boards I use the same frame and brace diagonally, with a lot more (4) cross braces.

I get this exact construction isn't an option for exhibition layouts, but hopefully some ideas.

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 05, 2020, 01:52:09 PM
Richard,

Here's my approach to baseboards. Now these are heavy because I don't plan to exhibit my layout, and I learn't the hard way that baseboards like these (as used on Basingstoke) are real back breakers.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/3779/11433910943_8cbcd1bf0d_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/iqnMnz)

But the depth of the frame is what stops the board twisting, quite literally two of us have tried to twist the baseboards corner to corner and there is no movement. With Basingstoke there were also diagonal braces on each board to tie opposite corners together.

Also this is a fiddle yard board so has a flat top glued and screwed to the frame. For scenic boards I use the same frame and brace diagonally, with a lot more (4) cross braces.

I get this exact construction isn't an option for exhibition layouts, but hopefully some ideas.

Cheers
Dave

Frame depth may be where I went wrong: I thought 3" would be sufficient.  I built some boards much like yours from ply a long time ago as an experiment: they were solid topped and utterly rigid, admittedly only 12" wide though.

I may have been a bit premature writing off my boards: the one I strengthened seems to be stiffening up as the glue sets.  I'll give it 24 hours before I do anything drastic.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on February 05, 2020, 05:33:18 PM
I bought my baseboards from Model Railway Solutions.  The one thing I learned from them is 'Glue and Screw'  It's all made from 9mm ply, but every joint is rebated, glued and then screwed.  The technique works very well and, when I make my next baseboards, I intend to use the technique on my own builds.  I hope this helps.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on February 06, 2020, 07:56:40 PM
Baseboard-wise I am now officially in the poo.  After further thought I decided box-section crossmembers would be less useful than extra bracing. I added a large cruciform brace to the board I have been trying to strengthen.  Much better, but still a fair bit of twist which seemed to be coming from the ends.  I added triangular braces to the ends, and a couple more bits elsewhere.  The weight has now doubled from 7 to 14kg with all the bracing, and the thing still flexes.  As you can see from the photo I have got to the stage where I have given up trying to make everything neat and square underneath, and once you get to that stage it is often better to give up and start again.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Rf2hw9H/0/50ea3251/L/DSCN1536-L.jpg)

I'm still not sure what exactly I have done wrong here.  We are not talking about a huge amount of flexibility, but Stobs is being built as a pure exhibition layout. I haven't got room to put up the whole thing with storage loops at home, so even testing will mean transporting the boards to my workshop.  I don't want to be able to twist the boards by hand even fractionally as any movement will cause problems over time with track and scenery..  Maybe I am asking too much.  I have used well-established constructional methods, all joints glued and screwed etc etc.  Perhaps boards built using the Barry Norman ply-beam method always flex a bit.

Back to the drawing board. I am going to forget everything I have read about baseboard construction and start from first principles, looking at frames used in other application such as motorsport, where torsional rigidity is critical.  I need a strong, light, utterly rigid subframe on which the layout will sit.  I'm tempted by the ply-skinned Styrofoam system used on Wickwar and elsewhere, but have nagging doubts about its long-term stability.

Grrr.

Richard
Hi Richard
Im just wondering how wide those boards are? Obviously narrower boards would be stiffer.
However, I just wonder whether it is becaue you havent put a top on it yet? Obviously adding anything on the top will stiffen the board cosiderably. Even just a simple tarckbed of a few inches wide will add stiffness.
cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on February 06, 2020, 09:26:15 PM

Hi Richard
Im just wondering how wide those boards are? Obviously narrower boards would be stiffer.
However, I just wonder whether it is becaue you havent put a top on it yet? Obviously adding anything on the top will stiffen the board cosiderably. Even just a simple tarckbed of a few inches wide will add stiffness.
cheers
Kirky

I agree with Kirky.  Rather than that heavy bracing, I think what you want to try to achieve is a box section.  There is a lot of scope to add a thin sheet to the top... and to the bottom... with cut-outs where required.  Probably a lot lighter as well.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 08, 2020, 07:47:33 AM
Thanks everyone for your input.  Yes it would be much easier to get the things rigid with a solid top, but much of the scenery will be below trackbed level.  With hindsight it would have been easier to build solid boards and put the trackbed on risers with access holes, but I thought that would make the wiring and point motor access too fiddly.  Now the glue has set I'm happier than I was with the stiffness, and glueing Styrofoam blocks to the frame to build up the contours will help I think.

I am now doing the first of the storage loop boards.  These should be simpler being basically 4 x 2 solid topped ply boxes, but have a few extras to make life awkward.  Firstly a 3 x 2 folding flap on one end, with a triangular infill between the 3' wide and 2' wide parts.  Secondly I want to incorporate integral folding legs (with bracing struts to keep the legs and folding flap upright)  The idea will be to erect the storage loop boards first and then hang the main boards off them.  For an exhibition layout I reckon the fewer bits and pieces you have to cart around the better so I am trying to integrate everything (legs, transport protection, screens around the storage loops) into the boards themselves.  All with an absolute maximum weight of 20kg per board.

I seriously understimated the time it would take to build the boards for Stobs.  It's a long time since I built anything bigger than a small branch terminus, and even the "big layout" that my Dad and I built in the garage forty years ago was just Sundeala tops on softwood frames, nailed together (literally) in a day.  This thing is going to have several hundred individual bits of wood by the time I've finished it.  Hopefully it will then stand up to ten years or more being carted around the country in a Transit van.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on February 08, 2020, 08:02:49 AM
Sorry, just got back to this.

When I said the freight consist was interesting, I was in no way being critical. It just reminded me of how varied things used to be back then.

Plus it makes for a great train!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on February 08, 2020, 01:36:43 PM
When I said the freight consist was interesting, I was in no way being critical. It just reminded me of how varied things used to be back then.

Hi Bealman,

I didn't take your post as criticism nor was any intended in my reply to your post.

On of the reasons I chose to model the Waverley is the train formations, A1s and A2s pulling five coach local passenger trains, long fitted goods trains running between Carlisle and Edinburgh and any number of mixed goods workings including, in one picture I have, a single van, two 16T minerals and a brake. hauled by a standard 4MT.

I absolutely agree there are some pretty interesting consists to be seen which are very modelable on a small layout.

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on February 08, 2020, 05:03:21 PM
When I said the freight consist was interesting, I was in no way being critical. It just reminded me of how varied things used to be back then.

Hi Bealman,

I didn't take your post as criticism nor was any intended in my reply to your post.

On of the reasons I chose to model the Waverley is the train formations, A1s and A2s pulling five coach local passenger trains, long fitted goods trains running between Carlisle and Edinburgh and any number of mixed goods workings including, in one picture I have, a single van, two 16T minerals and a brake. hauled by a standard 4MT.

I absolutely agree there are some pretty interesting consists to be seen which are very modelable on a small layout.

Cheers
Dave

Let's not forget the inevitable "tail traffic" of vans attached to local passenger trains.

Agreed Dave, the Waverley Route is a spectacular and highly modellable railway, I have already chosen Heriot as my next exhibition layout which I will start at some point in the not too distant future.

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 08, 2020, 05:12:48 PM

Let's not forget the inevitable "tail traffic" of vans attached to local passenger trains.

I found this the other day on derbysulzers.com (Bruce McCartney photo)

(https://www.derbysulzers.com/45xxxwavtrain.jpg)

A four wheel parcels van between loco and first coach of the "Waverley". Even by WR standards that's a bit rustic.
Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 08, 2020, 07:45:00 PM
A couple of hours' useful work this morning, with the first of the storage loop boards coming together:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-PVWNvQb/0/9e6ae8ab/L/DSCN1540-L.jpg)

Nice and rigid once I put the diagonal brace in.  I was hoping to spend much of tomorrow working on baseboards, but my workshop is forty minutes' drive from home along tree-lined roads, and I don't much like the look of the weather forecast.  Amber warning for high winds last time I looked. 

So instead I'll probably spend the day fiddling with some of the various smaller bits and pieces that will make up this layout.  I started after tea with signals.  These are awkward, being North British lattice post examples.  Most of the signals on the Waverley were converted to upper quadrant by the LNER, but those at Stobs remained lower quadrant until they were removed in July 1961.  Stobs box was very seldom open: every photo I have seen shows the signals at clear in both directions, so I'm not going to bother making them work.  But how to model those posts?

MSE do an etched kit for a lattice post in N gauge but I suspect it is reduced from 4mm artwork.  I tried building a couple and found it impossible to get them straight due to heat from the soldering process.  Also, even though the lattices are as fine as is possible with etching they are still noticeably overscale.  I pondered various ways of making the signal posts, none of which seemed terribly easy.  Then it struck me that in many of the photos I was looking at I could barely see the lattices at all, just the uprights and a few internal braces holding the uprights together.

Can I get away with just modelling the uprights?  Only one way to find out:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-NLbhddL/0/31ab5782/L/DSCN1541-L.jpg)

The posts taper from bottom to top.  I went for 2.5mm width at the base tapering to 2mm at the top, drew some lines on a piece of Plastikard and used a pin vice to drill holes in a square pattern of spacings varying from 2 to 2.5mm.  I then cut out the squares and slid them onto four lengths of 0.7mm nickel silver wire, with a couple of bits of 2mm square strip trimmed down and inserted down the middle of the post at the base and the pivot point for the arm.  These various bits of plastic have been spotted in place with cyano: once it has set, hopefully I can trim the squares flush with the wires and have a signal post.  On the other hand it might just fall to bits.  Soldered brass squares would be better but Plastikard is a lot more forgiving when you are trying to hand drill tiny holes.

It will be interesting to see how this turns out.  I have a feeling the post might be a touch overscale but I'll see how it looks once painted.  I have some etched arms and glazing material but will need to fabricate a lamp and source some etched ladders to finish it off.

Tomorrow I might get the platform shelter under way.  Possibly the least photographed railway structure in Scotland: I only have one photo to work from, but as it was demolished around 1962 hopefully not too many people will tell me I've got the shape wrong.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 09, 2020, 04:05:55 PM
Today is definitely a good day to stay indoors and make small things.  In this case, the waiting room on the Down platform at Stobs.  (The Up platform had no shelter at all.) 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-JJvgjpH/0/7413ebd9/L/DSCN1550-L.jpg)

My usual mixture of mounting card shell with overlays (printed brick paper this time to match the ticket office I built a while ago), a door left over from a plastic kit, and those lovely window frames.  They came with a Ratio signal box interior kit.  I only have one fuzzy photo of the waiting room to work from so I don't know what exactly the window frames at Stobs looked like, but these are very similar to the ones at Belses, a bit up the line.

Like the signal box it has lighting installed, but there won't be any interior to speak of, just a cast iron grate for the fire.  There were probably benches around the walls, but they wouldn't be visible through the windows so I won't bother.  I tend to only model the bits that people can see.  The roof has had a coat of varnish to seal it before I start the tedious job of sticking on strips of gummed paper slitted with a scalpel to represent slates.  The technique works well, but cutting the slits pretty quickly reminds me that I have arthritis in my left wrist.

The first signal came out reasonably well but I think I can do better, so I'll try another one this evening if the power stays on.  It's pretty wild out there and the lights keep flickering.  Normal weather for the Waverley Route I suppose.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 09, 2020, 09:11:42 PM
A quick look at how I do slate roofs:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-DXJ3Zcr/0/0955a5ad/L/DSCN1552-L.jpg)

Drawn in 2D CAD and printed onto A4 self adhesive address label paper.  The idea is that each strip overlaps the one below it by half, creating a ridged effect.  The strips are cut horizontally with a scalpel, then the vertical lines between the "slates" scribed, again using the scalpel but with a not too sharp blade.  Strips are then cut to length and stuck to the roof, starting at the bottom.  The adhesive allows a bit of repositioning: once I am happy with the alignment they are pressed down firmly into place.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-SfwSg3x/0/fa2fed52/L/DSCN1553-L.jpg)

Once all the strips are in place the ends are trimmed.  I then use strips of folded address label paper for the corner cappings.  Finally the whole lot is painted grey, which seals the strips and cappings nicely so they don't peel off the roof.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-8bZzKcJ/0/b7d2cd4d/L/DSCN1556-L.jpg)

A quick recap of the structures built so far.  None of them are quite finished, but all are I think recognisable for anyone familiar with the Waverley Route.  Still to come: station house (the last big structure), platelayers' hut (just north of the viaduct) and two bogus bridges to hide the scenic breaks.  Both will be based on actual examples:  I will be moving Colislinn road bridge a mile and a bit south of its actual location, and one of the four occupation bridges between Stobs and Shankend will be shifted a few hundred yards north. I don't want to mess around too much with the geography, but it's only a model as I keep reminding myself.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 12, 2020, 10:42:08 PM
I finally have somewhere to rest my mugs of tea:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-4tqSWwK/0/a8d210cf/L/DSCN1563-L.jpg)

Two out of the four (or maybe six) boards now capable of standing up on their own.  I still have to add the raised trackbed to the scenic board and the 3 x 1 hinged extension to the loop board.  I'm starting to worry about that extension: it's nearly as big as the board itself and I don't think a diagonal strut will be enough support.  It's going to need legs.  But for now we have baseboards, so just admire my exquisite carpentry.  Thomas Chippendale would have been proud (if he'd been a ten-thumbed bodger who hated wood with a vengeance).

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-5XSjGSc/0/6a09d5b8/L/DSCN1564-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-PDJPXkj/0/40671df9/L/DSCN1565-L.jpg)

Even better, the things actually fold up for transport, just as I wanted.   

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Fw32NDF/0/82c1161d/L/DSCN1566-L.jpg)

Bolting two boards together at right angles makes for a nice stable structure, although it shows up the need for adjustable feet.  Not much chance of this lot flexing enough to accommodate slightly uneven floors.  Overall I'm pretty happy so far although the beast is eating timber at a terrifying rate.  I'll need at least two more six packs of 2 x 1 before I'm done.

Weather forecast for the weekend looks unpromising for outdoor activities: I suspect I will be in the workshop wrestling with banana shaped lengths of splintery softwood.  Was timber always this rubbish or has it got worse lately?

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on February 13, 2020, 08:45:10 AM
Weather forecast for the weekend looks unpromising for outdoor activities: I suspect I will be in the workshop wrestling with banana shaped lengths of splintery softwood.  Was timber always this rubbish or has it got worse lately?

In my experience, really good timber is available, albeit expensive2.  But I suspect that was always the case.  However, there is cheap, poor quality timber very readily available nowadays.  Sometimes it's fine for the job in hand and sometimes it isn't.  I understand that timber quality was one of the reasons why Barry Norman devised the 'plywood-with-spacers' beams that you have used to such good effect.

Many thanks for these fascinating updates and excellent pictures.

Best wishes.

John

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on February 13, 2020, 11:01:16 AM
Thomas Chippendale would have been proud (if he'd been a ten-thumbed bodger who hated wood with a vengeance).
I suspect I will be in the workshop wrestling with banana shaped lengths of splintery softwood.  Was timber always this rubbish or has it got worse lately?


First line is very self deprecating, Richard. It looks fine to this chap who can convert perfectly good timber into sawdust and scrapwood.
Second line - I've found timber from the DIY sheds to be pretty grim so tend to go to my local builders merchant. I pay a little extra but it's worth it for the better quality.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: dannyboy on February 13, 2020, 11:17:12 AM
I finally have somewhere to rest my mugs of tea:


That is one strange coffee table!  ;)

As Mick said, timber from "DIY sheds" can be "pretty grim". Unfortunately, I do not have any nearby timber merchants, so have to spend ages looking for decent timber when I go to my local(ish) shed.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 13, 2020, 11:18:03 AM
A random thought.  It might be a good idea to make up a short bridging section, maybe a foot long, so I can test all the storage loops without having to fit them to the scenic boards.  My local model shop is having a "Boxfile Challenge" with a prize for the best bit of railway modelling in a boxfile.  If I glue my boxfile to a short baseboard and cut holes at each ends, I can have a boxfile layout that accommodates ten coach trains  ;D Any suggestions for scenic treatment on a very short section of curved double track, in a boxfile?

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 16, 2020, 02:39:02 PM
The weather here in Norfolk wasn't bad enough to stop me driving up to the workshop for a few hours of bad carpentry.  I seem to have created a monster.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-SQMHzs6/0/635cf2c1/L/DSCN1577-L.jpg)

12 x 6 feet doesn't sound huge, but it's a lot bigger than anything else I have built.  I cut the trackbed roughly to shape just to see how it would look.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-d48ZfTD/0/730aa5df/L/DSCN1579-L.jpg)

The layout now stands on adjustable rubber feet and is very stable and solid when all bolted together.  I was a bit worried that I might have overdone the height, but with the trackbed in place it looks about right for me.  I still have to fit the hinged extensions to the loop boards, then the backscene supports and protective covers.  I'm feeling a bit nervous about how easy these boards will be to handle at their "fully dressed" weight.  Basically it is going to take two people to transport, set up and dismantle the layout.  That is fine for shows, not so good if I have been working on the scenic section at home and need to get it to the workshop so I can run some trains.  This is starting to feel a bit like a club layout, but without the club.

I have a spare room at the workshop which is just used for storage as it gets far too hot in summer.  I might look at panelling out the roof with insulation board and putting blinds on the windows, to give the layout a semi-permanent home between shows.

Still in with a chance of starting track laying by the end of this month :)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: cornish yorkie on February 16, 2020, 07:32:59 PM
 :hellosign:  :greatpicturessign:
   Nice woodwork Richard look forward to more   :thumbsup:
        regards Derek.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on February 16, 2020, 07:47:01 PM
Seconded. Lovely work and I keenly await further progress.

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 16, 2020, 11:35:16 PM
I just spotted that huge blowfly in the second photo.  It's February.  Where did that come from?

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 18, 2020, 07:49:58 AM
There is a lot of variety in this hobby.  I went from building big baseboards to finishing off this:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-5qfNX7s/0/1e1c6213/L/DSCN1582-L.jpg)

The first of two lower quadrant signals which stood on the embankment at each end of the viaduct.  As mentioned previously these were North British lattice post signals, but the lattice is very fine and delicate looking, just about unmodellable in N gauge and does not really show up in a lot of photos, so I just modelled the uprights, with Plastikard squares to hold them together and 2mm square rod sections to support the arm and lever.  The first one I did used 0.7mm nickel silver wire for the uprights but this looked a bit clumsy so I did this one in 0.45mm, much better. The arm is an old MSE / Derek Mundy etching.

Originally I intended to make this as non-working since Stobs box was closed most of the time with the signals left at Clear in both directions, but I got carried away.  The arm moves up and down, and it lights up as well, with a tiny LED.  At this point I realised the big advantage of my constructional method:  I soldered the tails of the LED to two of the uprights and used them to carry current, with wires for power feed soldered to the other end.  The LED is a bit bright even on 3 volts and will need dimming but that shouldn't be a problem. The operating mechanism is well overscale: I have been looking at a couple of good photos of NB signals and I cannot see how the linkage was attached to the arm. Operating signals in N gauge will always be a compromise between appearance and robustness.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-XKQP6pM/0/02efb031/L/DSCN1586-L.jpg)

I plan to mount the signal on a piece of ply with a servo underneath it for operation.  This will then be buried in the embankment.  Ideally I would make the signals detachable for repair if needed, but given their location I can't see a way to do this at the moment.    Now all I have to do is make another one just the same as the first.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 18, 2020, 08:39:25 PM
Only one more board to go...

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-V5fdGKS/0/ad5452b7/L/DSCN1588-L.jpg)

I scrapped my original idea of hinged extensions to the loop boards as they are up past 15kg each already.  Instead I will have separate 3' x 2' ends, located with brass dowels and attached with over-centre toggle catches.  Each board will be supported by a single leg which will fold in the middle and tuck away under the board.  The two end boards will be bolted together face to face for transport. 

This evening I have been reworking a stack of Peco code 80 points for the storage loops.  I have read in a few places that these can cause problems with DCC due to wheels shorting between stock rail and the adjacent open switch rail which is the opposite polarity.  Given the very generous clearances on Peco points I reckon the back to back would have to be a long way out for this to be a problem, but I don't want to lay all the storage loops and then find out I was wrong.  In any case, bonding the stock and switch rails eliminates problems with poor contact, and I plan to feed the frogs with relays anyway.  I have been picking up Peco large and curved Electrofrogs cheap wherever I can find them: I now have ten of the fifteen I need, and another three in the post.  Nearly there.

I was intending to use old fashioned solenoids, with DPDT dual coil relays to switch frog polarity and give a visual indication of the selected route.  But I might end up using servos instead with MERG control boards as on Longframlington where they have proved very reliable.  I'm also pondering the use of train detection for a couple of jobs: to return signals to danger after a train has passed, and to reset the crossover used to release banking locos and return them to Hawick for their next duty.  I want to make the layout as easy and foolproof to operate as possible.  Due to the track configuration the crossover is in effect a reversing loop for electrical purposes and will need to be wired accordingly, using a DPDT relay linked electrically to the turnouts.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on February 18, 2020, 11:05:09 PM
Richard, your work on Stobs makes me want to scrap what I have done to date and start again. I can't wait to see this layout in all it's glory!

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on February 19, 2020, 08:05:20 AM
Richard, your work on Stobs makes me want to scrap what I have done to date and start again. I can't wait to see this layout in all it's glory!

Roy

Your layout is fine and already starting to capture the feel of an area I know well.  Keep at it. As for Stobs, I already want to scrap half of what I have done so far and start again  :D  The second scenic board weighs 2kg less than the first due to improved constructional methods, ditto the second of the two loop boards.  And each building I construct makes the previous one look a bit shonky.  I seem to be on a perpetual steep learning curve with this hobby. 

Pondering trackbeds over breakfast.  I'm using Finetrax Code 40 for the scenic area, Peco Code 80 for the loops.  The difference in height (sleeper base to rail top) is considerable.  I have made up some neat little adapter sections, with the ends of the Peco rail filed down to half height and the Code 40 soldered onto the "step", but I still need to accommodate the difference in overall height.  I'm also mindful of the disaster I had with Longframlington, where I used balsa for the trackbed and the ballasting process made it swell in places. I have been looking at closed cell foam to go under the Finetrax but I'm not sure it will provide a sufficiently stable base: the stuff I acquired is a bit too spongy for my liking.  I have found a supplier of thin cork sheet (down to 1mm) so I might go down that route. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 01, 2020, 06:41:28 PM
A useful morning's work today:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-zr35pkN/0/a4a94775/L/DSCN1606-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-xxgW2XH/0/f63fd395/L/DSCN1608-L.jpg)

I finished off the last of the loop end boards and fitted the over-centre toggle catches:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-fsbL39S/0/5e0eb58b/L/DSCN1609-L.jpg)

Trackbed is now supported and fixed down on the left hand board.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-qHJKmBs/0/1a0ecba9/L/DSCN1610-L.jpg)

I still have to do the same for the right hand board but have run out of wood for the uprights.  The viaduct sits snugly between the trackbed and base frame: the two have to be fitted at the same time.  Viaduct is looking good and makes a nice visual centrepiece for the layout I think.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-D5qm3nT/0/8c9fc977/L/DSCN1612-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-MGBpcF2/0/c7bc599b/L/DSCN1613-L.jpg)

If I get a couple of quiet hours at the workshop this week I will finish off the trackbed.  I have found that 1.5mm cork sheet is exactly right to take up the difference in height between Finetrax and Peco code 80, so that is another problem solved.  Hopefully next weekend I will be able to start some tracklaying: once I have done the sections across the board joins I can bring the layout home one board at a time and work on it in my little railway room.

Lots to think about still, especially electrics: I have been looking through the MERG range of kit-built goodies, now considering splitting each storage loop electrically into two, with LEDs on the control panel to show occupied sections and short isolated sections to stop operators running one train into the back of another.  All looks easy enough to do using relays but there is going to be a fair bit of wiring involved.  This time I really, really must document it all as I go along, use colour coding and not bodge anything. 

Still going for that 1st April deadline to get something running.  Tick tock.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 07, 2020, 06:46:08 PM
Another useful day at the office:  finished off the trackbed, and adjusted the height a little on the section I did last week which had a slight hump in it.  The viaduct is now permanently fixed in place and I have put down the cork underlay. The only bits of track so far are the joining sections at the ends: they have to cope with a baseboard join and the transition from Code 40 to Code 80 rail.  I soldered the rails to brass screws either side of the join, then cut through the rails with a slitting disc.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Gkgzkwz/0/c72635fa/L/DSCN1638-L.jpg)

Viaduct viewed from the operator side.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-xqchcbk/0/6879e6c7/L/DSCN1639-L.jpg)

Standing on the footbridge steps looking North across Barns Viaduct towards Hawick.  A popular spot for photographers back in the day.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-8bBGXg7/0/b6edb9be/L/DSCN1643-L.jpg)

Track placed on the trackbed to make sure I had enough.  Starting to look like a model railway :)

Richard

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-rgzHktt/0/8f9650fa/L/DSCN1646-L.jpg)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 08, 2020, 06:37:45 PM
And now for something completely different:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-S8hPpM3/0/5332f7f1/L/DSCN1651-L.jpg)

I spent yesterday evening and a fair chunk of today putting together MERG kits for the DCC base station, handset and the first of the two district cutout modules.  These are well-designed and competitively priced products although your soldering needs to be reasonably neat.

I did the cutout module first and struggled a bit with soldering components: it was the first time I have tackled this type of double-sided PCB and some of the solder pads were a bit on the small side, but it all went together OK.  Same with the base station, no problems encountered.  The handset is a trickier proposition:  it uses a fair few surface mount components including the main chip, and the pins on the chip and display are very close together. I used hairgrips to hold the surface mount components in place, a spot of liquid flux and the very fine solder supplied in the kit.  A couple of the pins on the chip seemed a bit reluctant to solder to the board but I got there in the end.  The biggest problem I had was soldering the voltage regulator: it is small, surface mounted and the centre pin is soldered to part of the board which acts as a heatsink.  I had a lot of problems getting a good soldered joint but ended up with something which looked OK.

Testing time: the system is supposed to run on 15v DC but the closest I had to hand was 12 volts.  I powered up the base station, went through all the tests on the instructions and it all seemed fine.  So I plugged in the handset and one of the surface mount resistors started smoking.  I swiftly unplugged it and checked the board for obvious assembly faults.  I couldn't find any, tried it again and it was completely dead.

One cup of tea later I had studied the schematic diagram and found that the smoking resistor was in the 12v input line, upstream of the voltage regulator.  I probed around with a multimeter and found I had a direct short from the resistor to earth.  I took a very close look at the voltage regulator and found a strand of solder bridging the input and earth pins.  So I carefully unsoldered the regulator, cleaned up the board and had another go.  I was much happier with the result second time round but the handset was still dead.  This turned out to be the protection diode on the 12v input which had burned out due to the short.  For now I replaced it with straight piece of wire,  and this time the handset powered up and passed all the tests.

I haven't tried the system with a loco yet as it really needs the proper 15v power supply, but so far it is looking good. A proper, fully functional and decent quality DCC system for around £80?  If you can solder, this has to be worth a look.  I saw one in action at a show a few weeks ago on a 2mm finescale shunting layout and the slow speed control really impressed me.   

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 12, 2020, 07:38:14 AM
Controller update: yesterday my 15v power supply arrived.  I connected everything up and attached the output to one of the old redundant fiddle yard cassettes from Longframlington to give me a short test track.  What next?  Oh, I need a loco.  So I dug out the Southern N class on the grounds of it being (a) dead easy to fit a DCC chip to and (b) foreign, so if everything went wrong it wouldn't be one of my LNER lovelies that got hurt.  At this point things went a bit wrong as the DCC handset didn't seem to be responding properly to commands and I couldn't make anything happen.  It took a few minutes of frustrated button-pushing before I realised that the second line of the LCD display had gone missing.

It had worked fine when tested previously, but that was before I fitted the board inside the case.  It is a very tight fit.  I removed the board and the display came back to life. The cut-out in the case for the display was pressing on one edge of the screen.  With this sorted I could see what I was doing and soon had the N class moving up and down.  I tried another loco (a Farish B1 that I bought to donate its tender to a V2) and that worked too although it tended to stall easily (drawbar contacts probably need adjusting).

I wasn't too impressed with the way the N class was running: it was very jerky at low speeds, rather like trying to run a coreless loco on a feedback controller.  Then I remembered that DCC chips have a feedback function built in.  I turned it off and the loco ran much better,  I fiddled around with CVs some more and got it running just about how I wanted it, although very slow speed control still needs some tweaking.  Last job was to test the district cutout module that I have built and that works beautifully.  I have started putting together the second district cutout: now I need a nice metal case to put all these bits in.

In another news, I have now finished slitting and bonding all the Electrofrogs for the fiddle yard so that they are fully "DCC friendly" and won't give me any issues with poor contacts on the blades.  The postman brought me a big pack of flexi track and some fishplates, so this weekend I might be able to start tracklaying on the storage loops.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on March 12, 2020, 09:29:10 AM
Richard,

Great progress on many fronts!

I'm intrigued by the use of a B1 tender on a V2. I have converted 3 V2s to DCC, the chips are sitting under the cab roof, and are annoyingly visible. I guess using a B1 tender would eliminate that.

I assume you are using Farish B1 tenders not Dapol. Do you disable/remove the motor and gear train in the V2?

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 12, 2020, 11:05:35 AM
Richard,

Great progress on many fronts!

I'm intrigued by the use of a B1 tender on a V2. I have converted 3 V2s to DCC, the chips are sitting under the cab roof, and are annoyingly visible. I guess using a B1 tender would eliminate that.

I assume you are using Farish B1 tenders not Dapol. Do you disable/remove the motor and gear train in the V2?

Cheers
Dave

I haven't actually done one yet.  Apparently the Farish B1 tender has the same drawbar arrangement and dimensions as the V2.  I was planning to leave the V2 loco motor in place for maximum pulling power but this brings its own problems, so my current thinking is to strip out the motor and gears, and replace all the cast alloy weights in the B1 tender with carefully shaped lead ones.  Then I might be able to do something about that horrible Triang-style skirt along the bottom of the boiler.  It's fairly low on the list of priorities at the moment: I have been picking up bits cheap for future projects whenever they turn up, so I now have two V2s, two A1s, an A2, an A3, a B1 and the N class which is destined to be reborn as a K3.  Also a BRCW type 2 and J39 to be reallocated from Longframlington.  Still a few gaps to be filled for a representative 1961 fleet: A4, Derby Type 4, D34 (scratchbuilt) and maybe a couple of ex LMS types for variety.  I'll probably need a second A3 as well.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on March 14, 2020, 09:45:36 AM
Hi Richard
(Good to see you at Lincoln a couple of weeks ago)
Great progress on Stobs and apologies that I havent been keeping up with your progress.
Youve done really well to tackle the MERG handset as a first go at SMD components. The handset is apparently the hardest kit to build in the MERG range. And heres the other thing - you now have a CBus system. You can effectively build your signalling and control all around CBus. But admittedly the learning curve is incredibly steep. So steep that its still on my 'to do' list.
Im interested in your transition from finetrax to code 80. Ive tried a transition to code 55, which involved lots of filing of the code 55 and ended up being pretty ineffective. Are you just butt joining the rails? I have never ever gotten brass screws to work as a way of supporting track - I must be missing something somewhere, and I only ever use copper clad now - preferably 2 mil sleepers.
Stobs is looking like its going to be a great layout Richard.
Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 15, 2020, 07:59:58 PM
Hi Richard
(Good to see you at Lincoln a couple of weeks ago)
Great progress on Stobs and apologies that I havent been keeping up with your progress.
Youve done really well to tackle the MERG handset as a first go at SMD components. The handset is apparently the hardest kit to build in the MERG range. And heres the other thing - you now have a CBus system. You can effectively build your signalling and control all around CBus. But admittedly the learning curve is incredibly steep. So steep that its still on my 'to do' list.
Im interested in your transition from finetrax to code 80. Ive tried a transition to code 55, which involved lots of filing of the code 55 and ended up being pretty ineffective. Are you just butt joining the rails? I have never ever gotten brass screws to work as a way of supporting track - I must be missing something somewhere, and I only ever use copper clad now - preferably 2 mil sleepers.
Stobs is looking like its going to be a great layout Richard.
Cheers
Kirky

I must admit I was a bit surprised when my DCC system actually worked.  I still have to build a second handset, and then a third so I have a spare for exhibitions.  For now I have been building a batch of Servo4 boards which are dead easy.  I don't think I need CBUS for this layout as almost all the complex electrics are in the storage loops, which have their own local control panel on the same baseboard as the points.

For the transition rails I used a fine slitting disc to cut down the code 80 rails to half height for around 10mm length, then soldered the code 40 on top, with packing under the sleepers to match the overall height.  The join seems plenty strong enough.  Brass screws work well provided your soldering is good, nice hot iron and good quality solder.  They look horrible, only suitable for hidden joins.  I have used PCB sleepers either side of the join in the middle of the scenic section.

Tomorrow is my birthday: I intend to treat myself to a day's holiday, tracklaying and finishing off the carpentry (backscene boards and protective covers).  At that point I will be able to work on one section at a time at home rather than having to set up the whole layout in the workshop.  I have ordered plenty of wire (including tinned copper for busbars), DB25 connectors for the board joins (same as Longframlington) and I think I will use nickel wire for the droppers.  April 1st looms, but a good day tomorrow should see me reasonably close to being able to run a train.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: dannyboy on March 15, 2020, 08:19:21 PM
Happy Birthday for tomorrow Richard. I would have got you a present if I had realised.  ;)  :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on March 15, 2020, 10:09:26 PM
Happy Birthday Richard.
Have a day off!

Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 16, 2020, 08:49:20 PM
A bit more progress to report:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-3TSkfjJ/0/5102d6f4/L/DSCN1660-L.jpg)

Backscene boards now laid and all the track in place on the scenic section.  Random collection of old sockets being used to hold the track down while the glue dries.

This is why I love N gauge: that lovely spacious feel, a narrow ribbon of steel threading its way through the landscape. 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Bh7hZj7/0/400ce13a/L/DSCN1667-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-tbQzNPZ/0/237df984/L/DSCN1668-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-nD49BPh/1/1349bf4f/L/DSCN1663-L.jpg)

I do however have a problem.  Somehow I have managed to make a mess of tracklaying across the viaduct:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-34QNxkN/1/afbf0a6e/L/DSCN1662-L.jpg)

Not entirely obvious from the photo, but instead of a continuous 25' radius curve I have ended up with a short straight each end of the viaduct.  The track is skewed across to one side as well.  I don't know how I got this so wrong, but trying to hand-lay large radius curves in Finetrax entirely by eye is not the easiest job in the world.  With hindsight it might have been better if I had glued track templates on top of the cork trackbed.

I now have a decision to make.  At the moment the track is only glued down with PVA and lifts easily.  Once it is ballasted it will set rock solid.  Do I lift the track across the viaduct and relay it, or live with the misalignment?  I think I know the answer to that one. I have to dismantle the layout in the morning so I can have my workshop back, but I should be able to work on the viaduct board on its own now, provided I don't disturb the track at the board join.

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: crewearpley40 on March 16, 2020, 08:50:59 PM
Impressive viaduct . Hope that you will sort your track issues out
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: cornish yorkie on March 16, 2020, 10:09:09 PM
 :hellosign:  :greatpicturessign:
     Happy Birthday Richard, hope all goes well with viaduct track laying
             regards Derek.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on March 17, 2020, 07:50:46 AM
Happy Birthday Richard,

I know a slight misalignment like that is all too easy to make. You know what you need to do, although relaying that probably looks like a block to the great progress you are making, if you don't fix it now it will bug you for years! Been there, done that.

Despite the temporary setback this is shaping up nicely,

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on March 17, 2020, 09:38:49 AM
I agree.  Do it now, before it becomes a real problem. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on March 17, 2020, 09:50:00 PM
Modellers dilemma
If you dont do it nobody else will ever know but it will annoy the hell out of you forever!
If you do do it, know will know youve done it or feel the pain and heart ache endured in recitifying a problem only you knew about.
Only one way to go for me.

Cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 19, 2020, 10:52:30 PM
Small update: I carefully separated the track from the cork base across the viaduct, applied fresh PVA glue and relayed it, using a simple card template to ensure that the tracks were centralised on the viaduct and correctly spaced.  Once I was totally happy with the new alignment I placed weights on the track and left it to dry.  I managed to avoid disturbing the track at the central board join, so hopefully that will be the last of the Code 40 tracklaying.

Storage loops next, in Peco Code 80 (cheap and robust).  I made a start today, laying the 12 inch inner approach curve and a fan of three turnouts to access the loops.  The turnouts are large curved Electrofrogs and I wasn't at all happy with the result, with some noticeable changes of gauge at rail joins.  Bad enough to bend the rather delicate Peco fishplates outwards.  On investigation I found that the rails at the toe (blade end) of the turnouts were slightly loose in the plastic base.  The problem seems to be confined to the curved turnouts SL-E386/7: I have about ten of varying ages, and only the brand new ones were free from gauge issues.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-B5cX7DM/0/8988241c/L/DSCN1673-L.jpg)

Here is the solution I adopted.  I cut off the first sleeper and then soldered a gapped PCB sleeper next to the second sleeper, allowing enough room to fit the fishplates.  The soldered sleeper allowed me to tweak the gauge slightly until it matched the flexible track.  It's not especially pretty but should work fine.  I'm sure I read somewhere on here about people having problems with derailments at the approach to Peco curved turnouts: The issue I have found here might be the cause.

This weekend I hope to be able to lay the track in the storage loops at both ends.  It might be a while before I can wire up all the point servos and frog switching relays, so for now I will just have one road in use on each set of loops.  Still chasing that April 1st deadline and it's going to be tight.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on March 20, 2020, 07:33:03 AM
Well done, Richard! :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on March 20, 2020, 08:12:18 AM
Well done, Richard! :beers:

Agreed.  Very clever; very clever indeed.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on March 20, 2020, 08:28:06 AM
Your solution is gold, Richard.  :thumbsup:

Thanks for posting for the benefit of other members.  :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: maridunian on March 20, 2020, 09:24:38 AM
Coming to this late, but you've definitely done the right  thing correcting that mis-alignment now. That viaduct is magnificent and it will be the centre of attention as trains sweep across it.

My current layout is 9 years old and a section of poor trackwork I laid in a tunnel (Flexitrack, curved too tightly) almost always causes derailments or stalls, making that route unusable. I've finally excavated an access hole in the layout edge wall through which to remove the dodgy section and insert some 9" radius Settrack. It's do-able, but biting the bullet when I first laid the track would have saved me endless frustration, fishing for wagons with coathangers, etc!

Mike
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on March 20, 2020, 09:30:37 AM
Similar situation with my old layout.  :(
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 20, 2020, 09:48:46 AM
Looking North across the viaduct towards Hawick, I think realigning the track was worth the effort.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-pqFg5Pf/0/1d98cd21/L/DSCN1674-L.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: GreyWolf on March 20, 2020, 10:35:07 AM
Looking North across the viaduct towards Hawick, I think realigning the track was worth the effort.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-pqFg5Pf/0/1d98cd21/L/DSCN1674-L.jpg)

Richard

Looks FAB Richard!  :claphappy:

Cheers  :beers:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: cornish yorkie on March 20, 2020, 09:11:29 PM
 :hellosign:  :greatpicturessign:
  Agreed looking splendid Richard
       regards Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: crewearpley40 on March 20, 2020, 09:16:14 PM
That is pretty well constructed woodwork . Certainly given this a lot of thought
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on March 21, 2020, 09:06:51 AM
You wrote 'Looking North across the viaduct towards Hawick, I think realigning the track was worth the effort.'

Definitely worth the effort. Thats one pleasing curve. Very easy on the eye.

Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 22, 2020, 10:25:23 AM
Tracklaying well under way at Stobs Camp Sidings (a.k.a. one of the two storage loop boards).  Those who like to work neatly and tidily should look away now.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-3Vwht4N/0/5595157a/L/DSCN1682-L.jpg)

I don't really like having rail joins on curves, but given the size of the loops I don't have a lot of choice.  I have eased the curves either side of the joins, which doesn't look as pretty as a continuous radius curve but should avoid the "doglegs" which I have seen so often causing problems with derailments.

I don't think I have enough materials to finish the second board today (brass screws and fishplates running low) so I might concentrate on getting this board wired up today.  Then I can at least see something move under its own power.   I really have got over-ambitious with this layout -so much to do before I can run trains.  It's a bit late for second thoughts now :)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on March 22, 2020, 11:11:00 AM
Those who like to work neatly and tidily should look away now.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-3Vwht4N/0/5595157a/L/DSCN1682-L.jpg)

I don't really like having rail joins on curves, but given the size of the loops I don't have a lot of choice.  I have eased the curves either side of the joins, which doesn't look as pretty as a continuous radius curve but should avoid the "doglegs" which I have seen so often causing problems with derailments.


Eh? 'Neatly?' 'Tidily?' What meaneth those words ???

Your fiddle yards look as if they will resemble those of Laurence's @Innovationgame (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=3091) layout
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 22, 2020, 01:09:08 PM
Tracklaying on the first storage board is now just about done, enough for me to have a tidy up anyway:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-KBgNgcs/0/7cd6c241/L/DSCN1685-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-dKWBFTp/0/dcc17c65/L/DSCN1684-L.jpg)

A1 Pacific and ten coaches (one more than the normal Waverley max load) fits into the shortest of the four loops with room for another three coaches.  The spur off the outer loop is for turning banking locos ready for their next duty: I haven't yet decided whether to put in a small turntable or just turn locos by hand.  The turnout next to the loco will serve two dead end sidings to hold short non-timetabled trains (inspection saloon, breakdown train and suchlike). I haven't laid them as they cross the baseboard join and I have run out of small brass screws.  Speaking of which:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-pN3jmHF/0/6bfd10c5/L/DSCN1686-L.jpg)

Laying tracks on the diagonal like this across a board join is just asking for trouble.  The rails are firmly soldered to small brass screws which are themselves a nice tight fit in the plywood. I hope it will be enough.

I might put some wire droppers in a bit later and see if I can get something moving on the outer loop at least.  Until I have all the turnouts motorised and the frog switching relays in place, a single road will have to suffice.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 29, 2020, 01:45:53 PM
"Stobs Camp Sidings" (the first of the two sets of storage loops) is now mostly wired up and I can run a train!

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-BShgJLb/0/153b66fc/L/DSCN1689-L.jpg)

Only on the outer loop: I forgot to order toggle switches to control the point servos, and even if I switch the points by hand the frog switching relays aren't yet wired up.  They depend on a signal from the point servo control boards.  So there is still a bit more to do.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-krsxT9p/0/43d7ccf7/L/DSCN1691-L.jpg)

The blue things are the frog switching relays.  The layout is electrically split into two districts, so there are four tinned copper busbars to feed the track.  Go DCC, they said.  You only need two wires, they said.

Next job is to do exactly the same thing all over again, this time for "Shankend" (the other set of storage loops). I'm going to miss my aim of running a train over Barns Viaduct on the 50th anniversary of the last passenger carrying train to cross it (April 1st 1970).  The storage loops are at home, but the scenic boards are at my workshop. If I run out of things to do on the storage loops I can start work on the loco fleet: plenty to keep me busy there for a while.

Stay safe everyone and keep modelling.  With all these new layouts under construction, there should be plenty to see at exhibitions once the restrictions are lifted.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: degsy_safc on March 29, 2020, 03:33:08 PM
"Stobs Camp Sidings" (the first of the two sets of storage loops) is now mostly wired up and I can run a train!

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-BShgJLb/0/153b66fc/L/DSCN1689-L.jpg)

Only on the outer loop: I forgot to order toggle switches to control the point servos, and even if I switch the points by hand the frog switching relays aren't yet wired up.  They depend on a signal from the point servo control boards.  So there is still a bit more to do.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-krsxT9p/0/43d7ccf7/L/DSCN1691-L.jpg)


The blue things are the frog switching relays.  The layout is electrically split into two districts, so there are four tinned copper busbars to feed the track.  Go DCC, they said.  You only need two wires, they said.

Next job is to do exactly the same thing all over again, this time for "Shankend" (the other set of storage loops). I'm going to miss my aim of running a train over Barns Viaduct on the 50th anniversary of the last passenger carrying train to cross it (April 1st 1970).  The storage loops are at home, but the scenic boards are at my workshop. If I run out of things to do on the storage loops I can start work on the loco fleet: plenty to keep me busy there for a while.

Stay safe everyone and keep modelling.  With all these new layouts under construction, there should be plenty to see at exhibitions once the restrictions are lifted.

Richard

Hi Richard,

Looks great, out of interest are you using servos for point control and if so which model of servo are they please - have been looking at the version recommended by the guys at megapoints the HK15178 but they donít ever seem to be in stock at hobbyking.

Also if you donít mind, how many frogs are you controlling in each relay, looks like more than 1 green wire per relay?

Cheers Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on March 29, 2020, 07:14:50 PM

Hi Richard,

Looks great, out of interest are you using servos for point control and if so which model of servo are they please - have been looking at the version recommended by the guys at megapoints the HK15178 but they donít ever seem to be in stock at hobbyking.

Also if you donít mind, how many frogs are you controlling in each relay, looks like more than 1 green wire per relay?

Cheers Derek

I'm using Tower Pro SG90 micro servos in MERG 3D printed mounts.  About one servo in ten is faulty straight out of the box, but they're cheap enough that I can live with that.

Each relay switches one frog but some of the power feeds are taken off other frogs depending which way the points are set.  Hence the short green wires between relays.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Milton Rail on March 29, 2020, 07:45:34 PM
Been catching up on your thread richard, some super work and as some have said already, a divine gentle curve away from the viaduct - you make it all look & sound so easy!  Even your woodwork is pretty grand

Look forward to seeing the next steps, sorry you didn't make the 1st April deadline, but events conspired against you there rather than any sluggish progress on your part
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: degsy_safc on March 29, 2020, 08:42:28 PM

Hi Richard,

Looks great, out of interest are you using servos for point control and if so which model of servo are they please - have been looking at the version recommended by the guys at megapoints the HK15178 but they donít ever seem to be in stock at hobbyking.

Also if you donít mind, how many frogs are you controlling in each relay, looks like more than 1 green wire per relay?

Cheers Derek

I'm using Tower Pro SG90 micro servos in MERG 3D printed mounts.  About one servo in ten is faulty straight out of the box, but they're cheap enough that I can live with that.

Each relay switches one frog but some of the power feeds are taken off other frogs depending which way the points are set.  Hence the short green wires between relays.

Richard

Thanks Richard - much appreciated.

Iíve been looking at the TP SG90 too, seemingly plenty of those available.

Cheers Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 01, 2020, 10:46:13 PM
1st April 1970: D5307 passes through Stobs with an inspection saloon: the first train (apart from demolition trains) south of Hawick since January 1969, and the last.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-PdPmfHs/0/2ab168ce/L/DSCN1696-L.jpg)

Huntigowk!  (Scots for "April fool".) The track isn't wired up yet so this isn't a running train, just a staged photo commemorating that last working, fifty years ago today.  Bruce McCartney was at Stobs that day to capture the "Huntigowk special":  https://www.railscot.co.uk/img/59/19/ (https://www.railscot.co.uk/img/59/19/)

Depending on who you speak to, the inspection saloon contained BR engineering staff, demolition contractors bidding for the scrap metal, or a Hallade track recorder.

Back in 2020, work continues on "Shankend", the second set of storage loops.  I'm hoping to have both sets wired up and operational this weekend.  How long before I can join them to the main boards, stranded twenty miles away, is anyone's guess.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on April 02, 2020, 12:05:37 AM
If I recall correctly Bruce McCartney had to warn a dog walker on the track of the train which was met with disbelief!

Lovely portrayal of a train very familiar in pictures albeit not those colours if memory serves (all my Waverley books are in storage currently).

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 02, 2020, 07:23:34 AM
If I recall correctly Bruce McCartney had to warn a dog walker on the track of the train which was met with disbelief!

Lovely portrayal of a train very familiar in pictures albeit not those colours if memory serves (all my Waverley books are in storage currently).

Roy

I thought repainting the loco and saloon in BR Blue just for the day would be taking my obsession a little too far :)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 03, 2020, 10:41:13 AM
If I recall correctly Bruce McCartney had to warn a dog walker on the track of the train which was met with disbelief!

Bruce's own account of the event:

April Foolís Day dawned and very sceptically I went to Hawick station, and there it was: a single coach and a locomotive, D5307! A quick enquiry got the answer that it was going further towards Riddings, the limit of Scottish Region.

After taking a photograph at Hawick station, I drove to Stobs station, settling on the footbridge to wait for the train. On the track to the Hawick side of the bridge there was a man was walking his dog and as he approached, I told him there was a train coming. ĎHuntiegowk!í he shouted, passing under the footbridge, still on the track, walking towards Shankend.

About a minute later, I could feel the vibration of the bridge as the approaching train crunched the rust on the track. After photographing the train to the north of the bridge, I turned round to take the photograph on the previous page with the dog-walker scrambling to avoid the train. Once it was past, he returned towards the footbridge, mumbling to me, ĎYe *****, ye were right!í He continued his walk with his terrier but this time away from the railway.


Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 04, 2020, 08:32:07 PM
Tracklaying now completed at Shankend.  Point motors are in place and I have made a start on the wiring.  Once I have finished this I will have some more work to do on the Stobs Camp board - some more droppers and all the servo and relay boards to wire up. If anyone is wondering, Stobs Camp and Shankend are the two signalboxes either side of Stobs station.  One advantage of the "bent dogbone" design I have chosen is that my fiddle yards represent actual places, so I can give them names :)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-rVhCzdC/0/81d511db/L/DSCN1701-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-kHLpnTh/0/a0b4607a/L/DSCN1702-L.jpg)

The loops at Shankend are a bit shorter than Stobs Camp due to the crossover which is needed to release banking engines.  The shortest loop will still take a Pacific and nine coaches which is enough.

And now a small mystery.  It is quite a while since I constructed a layout using Peco track.  I bought several packs of fishplates and found them to be rather weak and soft: I couldn't put a rail join on a curve without ending up with a dogleg at the join.  I couldn't remember Peco track being quite so difficult to lay properly.  I tried staggering the joins but the result was no better.

Having finished one pack of fishplates I opened another, which was an old-stock packet I have had in my toolbox for about ten years.  The fishplates I bought recently come as individual items: these old ones were in strips of four.  It turns out that the old ones are much stronger than the new ones and can be used on curves without ending up with doglegs.  They hold their shape better as well: the new ones lose their grip on the rail the moment they are fitted.  Not fit for purpose as they say.

I don't know when the design changed, or why.  I may have to track down a couple more packets of the old style fishplates and see how many of the new ones I can replace without major track lifting.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 04, 2020, 08:38:12 PM
Looking good richard. I sympathise with you on the fishplates issue. I found them awkward and needed some persuasion
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on April 05, 2020, 06:41:37 AM
I laid my track over three years ago and, from your description, the fish plates were the old style.  However, I have found that with the track laid using Copydex, over a period of time, the joins on curves have tended to creep into angled joints.  I addressed the problem by inserting two or three track pins through the sleepers either side of the join, which has held it together nicely.  Of course, you may not like the appearance of the track pins, although I don't mind them.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 05, 2020, 08:59:39 AM
Thanks for that Laurence.  The track in the storage loops is pinned down, but even with three pins through closely spaced sleepers either side of the joins they still kinked slightly with the new fishplates.  Minimum radius here is 12" so it's not that I am flexing the track beyond its design limit.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Webbo on April 05, 2020, 09:21:09 AM
I think that preventing track joins from kinking at least a little on 12" curves is a pretty big ask even with pinning lots of sleepers on both sides of the joint. The solution is to solder the rail sections together and it's not that hard.

Webbo
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 05, 2020, 10:54:39 AM
I'm a bit wary of soldering the sections together due to the risk of the track buckling in hot weather.  On the other hand the track is pinned rather than glued which might allow it to move sideways a little if the expansion gaps at the rail ends aren't big enough to accommodate the expansion.  The room where I will have to store the loop boards can get very hot in summer. I'd be interested to hear other people's experiences in this area.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on April 05, 2020, 01:31:23 PM
My minimum radius in the storage loops is about 250mm (10" in old money).  I have designed my follow on layout, which will be largely what I have now, but with a lot of lessons learned.  One of the design mods I have made is, for the storage loops, to have quadrant curves with short straight connecting them.  The idea is to ensure that any track joins in the storage loops are on the short straights, rather than on curves.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on April 05, 2020, 01:57:13 PM
I have always used Code 80 in my fiddle-yards as I find it easier to work with. For the very sharpest curves I use Peco set-track (available in four different radii) which then removes any risk of kinking at joins and ensures consistent radius.

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 06, 2020, 10:22:49 PM
Electrics have been making steady progress, until I got to the stage of starting to wire up the servo and relay boards and hit a snag.  Both boards run on the same principle: when the relevant signal pin is connected to earth, this operates the servo or relay associated with that pin.  This makes point switching very simple, using an on-off switch with one terminal connected to the signal pins (relay and servo) and the other to earth.  I used the system on Longframlington but it is a while since I did the electrics on that layout. 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ZSMLh2L/0/bc419acf/L/DSCN1704-L.jpg)

I ordered 12 volt relay boards, since the servo boards use a 12v supply.  What I failed to foresee is that the signal pins on the relay board are at 12v, whereas those on the servo board are 5v.  When I linked the two together the relay board interpreted this as a voltage drop on the signal pin, so the relay was permanently on.  I had a spare 5v relay board which i connected up the same way as the 12v one (apart from the power supply) and it behaved perfectly.  So I now have 5v relay boards on order.

Getting there, slowly.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on April 07, 2020, 11:15:51 AM
Thanks for that Richard, thats useful info. On my finetrax boards Ive been using mechanical micro switcheds to change polarity but a relay seems a sensible idea (if you select the correct voltage  :D)
Would you mind posting a link to your 5v relay supplier?
Thanks
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 07, 2020, 12:58:30 PM
Thanks for that Richard, thats useful info. On my finetrax boards Ive been using mechanical micro switcheds to change polarity but a relay seems a sensible idea (if you select the correct voltage  :D)
Would you mind posting a link to your 5v relay supplier?
Thanks
Kirky

Available all over but I have been buying them from here:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5V-1-2-4-8-Channel-Relay-Board-Module-for-Arduino-Raspberry-Pi-ARM-AVR-DSP-PIC/252051910091 (https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5V-1-2-4-8-Channel-Relay-Board-Module-for-Arduino-Raspberry-Pi-ARM-AVR-DSP-PIC/252051910091)

Best wishes, Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 07, 2020, 01:04:42 PM
Thinking about it, when I wired up Longfram I had to remove a jumper from the relay boards as they had 12v relays and 5v sensing (presumably a manufacturing error), so I ended up using a 5v supply piggybacked off the servo boards.  That's why I didn't realise that using 12v relay boards would cause problems.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on April 07, 2020, 01:42:37 PM
Thanks Richard, thats very helpful. I often find that having too much choice is not a good thing and end up spending a tenner on something that is the wrong type. Always helpful to get something that is known to work. When it goes wrong then it has to be a fault at my end!
Cheers
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 10, 2020, 10:59:22 AM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-7dc736L/0/65a97dbb/L/DSCN1710-L.jpg)

Shankend board now fully wired, tested and working 100%.  I built a small control panel for the points - not as neat as some I have seen on here, but it does the job.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-W2wmnBs/0/4b53814e/L/DSCN1711-L.jpg)

It is fair to say I had a few problems getting to this stage.  Faced with a constant stream of electronic bleeps from one or both of the district cutouts it would be easy to blame DCC, but all the problems were wiring errors which would have had exactly the same effect on a DC wired layout. After struggling for a while I had to disconnect all the bleepers as they were upsetting the dog.  In my defence there is an awful lot of wiring under the board here - nine servo-operated points each with a frog switching relay, two districts, wire droppers to each rail section, and another pair of relays to change the polarity on one of the districts when the points are reversed on the crossover. I was bound to get a couple of things wrong. 

The biggest mistake I made was misreading the markings on the relay board - I got the common and normally closed pins the wrong way round on all eleven relays and had to reconnect the lot.  There was also a spurious wire connecting two of the frogs together (no idea what I thought I was doing there) and a metal fishplate instead of a plastic one on one of the crossover points which had me scratching my head for a while until I realised what I had done wrong.

The only thing I have to watch now is that if a metal wheelset bridges the rail gap between the two boards while the crossover is reversed I get a dead short as the board joint is the boundary between the two districts.  The crossover is solely used for releasing banking locos, but the operator will have to be careful about where exactly he brings the train to a halt as the last couple of wagons will be straddling the board joint.

Tasks for Easter - finish the wiring for the Stobs Camp board which is about 30% done at the moment, and see if I can fit my DCC system components into a metal case. It's all a bit messy at the moment: I am still having problems with the handset display, possibly a dry joint on one of the tiny connecting pins.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ncpDfsL/0/32188955/L/DSCN1712-L.jpg)

I have a dead computer which I have gutted apart from the power supply which will give me 12v and 5v: it's a pity the DCC system needs 15v or I could run the whole layout off the computer power supply. 

Stay home everyone, stay safe and keep modelling.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 11, 2020, 08:01:54 PM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ppf8JbS/0/d89a6391/L/DSCN1713-L.jpg)

Another day of electrickery and the Stobs Camp board is now pretty much finished, just a few cable ties and some insulating tape needed underneath to tidy things up.  In contrast to Shankend this board just powered up and worked perfectly from the start.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-zScjkWN/0/be27db0a/L/DSCN1714-L.jpg)

Underneath the completed Shankend board, showing the main elements.  Five bus wires - Up and Down districts, and a common return for the servo and relay boards.  All marked and colour coded so I stand a fighting chance of repairing any faults that develop.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-xVP7pNp/0/4b8cd556/L/DSCN1715-L.jpg)

Interboard connection will use these DB25 sockets, same as Longframlington.  I am using two pins for each track bus wire: with 1.5 amp overload protection on each district that should be enough to handle the loads.  The 8 way screw connector allows power to be fed direct to the board: normally the DCC track feeds and the 5 and 12 volt supplies will come in via one of the scenic boards, as close to the centre of the layout as possible.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-7DZ5Szd/0/c3ae0326/L/DSCN1717-L.jpg)

On the Shankend board I managed to put one of the turnouts directly above a board crossmember, hence this rather convoluted linkage from the tiebar to the servo unit.  It works very well at the moment: time will tell whether wear in the linkage creates a problem in future,

Now that I have made up the control panels I'm not happy with them: selecting the route into any given loop is not as easy as I thought it would be.  It will probably get much easier with practice, but I am tempted to replace the toggle switches with a push-button routing system if I can find something suitable.

Not much more to do on the storage loops.  My Land Rover is now back on the road, so I can swap the loop boards for the scenic boards while making my normal journey to and from work rather than having to make a special trip.  I don't think railway modelling is included in the Government's list of permitted reasons to leave the house...

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 12, 2020, 08:02:19 PM
Bashing on... I thought I would make a start on my DCC control and power centre. This is the starting point: an ancient IBM desktop which should have gone to the council tip long ago.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-DTFqK8m/0/d67f4619/L/DSCN1720-L.jpg)

And here's why I hung onto it: a really well-made case with hinged lid.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-v6C8sQ8/0/cb86bfae/L/DSCN1721-L.jpg)

I stripped out everything except the power supply, and added a separate 15v supply from a Toshiba laptop.  This gives me 3.3v (for LED lighting), 5V (relay boards), 12v (servo boards) and 15v (DCC).  I still need to add some resettable fuses to the outputs from the PC supply as these things pack a big punch, 30 amps or more at 12 volts.

The next stage will be to fit the circuit boards.  I tried mounting them on squares of MDF glued to the bottom of the casing: the less said about this the better.  I now have some proper threaded spacers on order.  I still need to build the booster board but there is plenty of space to fit everything in.  The casing had a couple of small cooling fans at the front: I threw these away but may have to retrieve them as the DCC station and booster can run quite hot. Then I just have to put a couple of sockets on the back.

Having come to a halt on this job I thought I would cheer myself up by running a train (admittedly only from one end of the loop to the other).

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-PKVCbtS/0/66d8f07b/L/DSCN1719-L.jpg)

The first proper Waverley Route train to run on the layout: the up "Waverley" (10.15 Edinburgh - St Pancras) passes Stobs Camp Sidings behind an "A1" Pacific.  60162 Saint Johnstoun was a Waverley regular in the early 1960s, after the Deltics had displaced Haymarket's A1s and A4s from most of the East Coast expresses.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: cornish yorkie on April 13, 2020, 11:16:29 AM
 :hellosign:  :greatpicturessign:
  After all your trails & tribulations with the electrickity watching trains run is well deserved  :thumbsup:
  stay safe regards Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 13, 2020, 08:43:58 PM
After four days solid modelling I think I'm running out of momentum.  Today wasn't especially productive.  I thought I would make a start on one of the locomotives for Stobs:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-HnLsq8n/0/b05ce9be/L/DSCN1723-L.jpg)

A Gresley V2, probably the loco type most associated with the line, at least in BR days.  The Farish model was a good effort back in the 1990s but not up to modern standards.  It suffers from lack of haulage capacity, and mine will have to handle 35 wagon trains, so I decided to rework it using the tender drive from a Farish B1.  I acquired one of these cheap with damaged valve gear: the tender fits straight onto the V2 drawbar and has the same system of electrical contacts.  I pulled the motor and intermediate gear out of the V2, and changed the pony truck wheels for some see-through Dapol ones: not a lot I can do about the solid backed driving wheels though.

I then ran into all kinds of issues with poor electrical contact (dirt and arcing damage on the drawbar connectors) and what I thought was a split gear, but turned out to be a couple of bent teeth on one of the driven axles.  I have an unwell J39 so I borrowed a wheelset for that.  I finally got the thing running OK (although still with some pickup issues) but it struggled with seven Mk1s on the curves, so I removed the cast alloy weight from the tender and replaced it with shaped pieces of lead.

At this point the handset for my MERG DCC system lost its display.  It has been temperamental since I built it.  I suspected a bad connection somewhere and spent a couple of hours testing, remaking soldered joints etc but with no luck.  The controller still works, but without a display its use is a bit limited.  I have a second handset kit on order, so I can try swapping the display from that one as I suspect that is where the fault lies. 

Next job for the V2 is to see whether I can get rid of that horrible skirt along the bottom of the boiler.  Looking at the construction of the thing it shouldn't be impossible.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on April 14, 2020, 06:35:27 AM
Sounds like a case of extreme perseverence!
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on April 14, 2020, 08:05:19 PM
@belstone (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=2569)
Richard, I think there is a screw adjustment for the screen brightness on the Merg handset. Mine were particularly tempramental and just the slightest nudge clockwise or wnticlockwise can make all the difference.

Ive found the relevant bit in the manual: 'First, optimise the contrast of the alphanumeric display by adjusting the blue Ďpotí VR2. It may initially appear blank or full of black rectangles. It should be possible to set VR2 so that legible characters can be seen. If not then remove power by disconnecting the curly cable at the RJ22 connector and gently pull the display free from the
PCB. Check the soldering at the PIC U1 pins 12 Ė 18, all of the pins soldered to the display itself and under the 15 way header at the PCB to eliminate poor or shorted work. When satisfied reinsert the display and reapply power.@

Hope this helps
Amazing progress btw!
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 25, 2020, 10:55:10 PM
A week of electronic fiddling after the postman brought me a couple more MERG kits, a DCC power booster and another handset.  The booster went together OK although soldering the earthed components was hard work as the circuit board acts as a giant heatsink.  I tried a larger iron but it was too clumsy.  Anyway, here is the complete system laid out, ready to put in the case.  Booster is the large board in the middle, base station to the left and the two district cutouts to the right.  Very satisfying to look at all these electronics and think "I made that".

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-9fm2Qb7/0/ef0da75b/L/DSCN1751-L.jpg)

Next job was to assemble the second handset, incorporating lessons learned from the first one.  It was a lot easier this time round: I paid a bit more attention to the fit of the board in the case and getting all the button switches lined up and square on the board.  I powered it up and it worked perfectly.  I then swapped the screen with the one from the other handset: the screen was dead.  I put the new screen in the old handset: still no display.  Looks like handset number one is going to end up in the bin: I've done all the continuity tests I can, including the bits mentioned by @kirky (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=492), and I'm no further forward.  Annoying as the thing actually controls trains perfectly, but without a display its use is limited.

The MERG handset isn't a thing of great beauty and looks a bit home-brew against some of the commercial offerings, but it sits nicely in the palm of the hand and is very easy to use, even for me.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-5t7p6n7/0/095b9f80/L/DSCN1757-L.jpg)

Now I had a working system it was time to fit everything into the old computer case, using threaded spacer posts.  Some of the wiring is a bit of a lash-up as I am waiting for some 15-pin connector plugs, so for the moment I am using screw terminal blocks to connect the thing to the Stobs Camp board which I am using as a test track.  I wired everything up, plugged it in and nothing happened.  Strange.  I found the fuse had blown in the plug (3 amp) and thought the surge on startup might have caused it, so I replaced it with a 5 amp fuse and tried again.  There was a loud pop, followed by my wife asking me why all the power had gone off downstairs.  Oh dear.

At first I assumed that the ATX power supply from the old computer had failed, but after dismantling it and not finding anything obvious I had a look at the 15 volt supply (a repurposed Toshiba laptop unit) and found that one of the capacitors inside it had blown up.  So I will need another 15 volt supply: I tried running the DCC system on 12 volts from the ATX supply but that wasn't enough for the booster to work.  Once I have sorted this out I just need to fit and wire the connectors at the back (4-pin DIN for track supply, 15 pin D-Sub for handsets, power feeds to the servo and relay boards) and order another MERG handset to replace the dead one.  I also need to fit buzzers to the district cutouts and some LEDS on the front to display the status of the various components and power supplies. 

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-3c9HZ75/0/282a93c6/L/DSCN1755-L.jpg)

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on April 26, 2020, 09:10:14 AM
Definitely do no bin that handset Richard. As a last resort you can send it to the technical support team. The address is advertised in Merg magazines I think but Iím sure a quick search on the Merg forum will turn it up. You may need some new components but  since it actually works then it seems it must be salvageable. It is a tricky little kit is the hand set.
Cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on April 26, 2020, 01:07:42 PM
Definitely do no bin that handset Richard. As a last resort you can send it to the technical support team. The address is advertised in Merg magazines I think but Iím sure a quick search on the Merg forum will turn it up. You may need some new components but  since it actually works then it seems it must be salvageable. It is a tricky little kit is the hand set.
Cheers
Kirky

I've put the full story on the MERG forum, see if anyone has any idea what has gone wrong.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on April 27, 2020, 10:02:16 AM
I've put the full story on the MERG forum, see if anyone has any idea what has gone wrong.
I read your sorry tale on the Merg forum and note the lack of responses. I still think you might be best sending it to technical support.
cheers
Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 10, 2020, 09:41:32 PM


Stobs Camp Sidings, July 1961.  One of St Margarets' finest, 60882 has run into trouble on the morning Edinburgh-Carlisle semi-fast.  With no relief engine available at Hawick the station pilot, "J36" number 65331, has been attached to bank the train to Whitrope, from where it is downhill all the way to Carlisle.  Passing Stobs Camp at little more than walking pace and with eight miles of 1 in 70 still to go.

Terrible video quality and unfinished locos and stock, but I'm happy this evening.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 16, 2020, 07:14:19 PM
Big day for the Stobs project: the storage loop boards have gone back to my workshop and the two scenic boards are now happily installed in what is likely to be their home for the next year or so. I designed the whole layout around being able to fit the scenic boards into this space to work on, so it's nice to have them where they should be.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-8GWp5L5/0/ec8eb9dd/L/DSCN1819-L.jpg)

However, there is a problem.  I have already had to lift and relay the track across the viaduct due to bad alignment:  now there is another bit I am unhappy with.  It's the section between the end of the viaduct and half way along the platforms: it should be a nice continuous curve, but instead there are short straights and a kink.  I need to lift and relay about a yard of track (both lines), the turnout, catch point and siding. Grrr.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-L2cLsJ3/0/869fc5da/L/DSCN1825-L.jpg)

Silver lining of sorts: I realised after laying this bit of track that I had forgotten about the under-track uncouplers.  The morning Carlisle-Hawick goods (the only train which shunted the siding at Stobs) will use the couplers I developed for "Longframlington" (in fact it will use Longfram's wagons) so I can attend to that while the track is up.  I also wasn't quite happy with the alignment of the siding: looking at photos it needs to curve away from the main line a bit more to clear the platform end.  So I'll have a better layout for the couple of hours it will take me to lift and skew the track.

Meanwhile in the motive power department the J36 is coming along nicely and I found in my scrapbox a Farish rolling chassis that will do nicely for a J37 with the same Kato power unit. I have a tenderless Farish B1 which will most likely end up with another Kato unit in a scratchbuilt Group Standard tender, and if that works out my non-running J39 will get the same treatment.  Finally, about to enter works is the "Poundshop McRat" - a resin Class 26 body that I have had for years on a Dapol chassis which I picked up cheap as a non-runner after it had been dropped.  It won't look quite as nice as a proper Dapol 26 but it should run just as well.  Lots to do, should keep me busy.  What have I taken on here?

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: lil chris on May 16, 2020, 07:18:21 PM
Looks pretty good to me with the sweeping curves. Like your woodwork too, nice open frame design, should look nice with the scenics built on.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 16, 2020, 09:02:29 PM
Up line through the station now lifted and realigned.  The track came away very easily using a scalpel blade under the sleepers: as with the real railway, the ballast will play an important role in keeping the track where it should be.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-FQQD7Vw/0/c6c143e4/L/DSCN1829-L.jpg)

While the glue is drying, a taste of things to come:  a B1, 61184 of St Margarets, clanks across the viaduct with a Niddrie-Canal Class E freight. As the train heads through the station the exhaust of the B1 will gradually give way to the sharp bark of a J36 at the back which will bank the train to Whitrope.  V2s and Pacifics normally worked these trains single handed: the lesser B1s and K3s generally needed a banker. These transfer freights between Edinburgh and Carlisle were the lifeblood of the Waverley Route and I will have to build an awful lot of wagons.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on May 16, 2020, 09:12:57 PM
Looking really nice Richard. The attention to detail is typical belstone of course. Just superb.

Kirky
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 17, 2020, 01:33:14 PM
The track gang has spent the morning slewing rails:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-b9dCZGB/0/da4d7143/L/DSCN1838-L.jpg)

Not a huge adjustment, no more than half an inch at most, but I'm happier with it.  The Waverley Route, especially the southern section, was all about curves:  I believe there wasn't a single length of straight track between Hawick and Longtown.  As I have now found, laying a 25 foot radius continuous curve in N gauge is a very tricky thing to do.

Electrics next: I have just finished putting in the droppers, next job is to fit the busbars and frog switching relay, then wire the whole lot up.  It isn't exactly complicated: 90% of the electrics are in the storage loops.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: ptopo on May 17, 2020, 10:45:31 PM
Looking really smart, great work. :thankyousign:

The curve looks really great - not much of a change perhaps but has a big effect so definitely worth doing - once you know itís wrong youíll always regret not doing straightening it out (or curving it out I guess... ::).

Thanks for sharing, thereís a couple of real wow moments already!

V. Best

PT
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 18, 2020, 10:56:06 AM
Having got the busbars and droppers in place yesterday, the next stage is to look at controlling the turnout and catch point (which will operate as a linked pair), the uncoupler and two signals (all servo operated).  The turnout and uncoupler will be controlled by the Down line operator (responsible for the Stobs Camp storage loops).  The Up and Down home signals will be under the control of their respective operators.

My original plan was to have a small local control panel behind one of the scenic boards for the goods siding area, and switches on each of the loop control panels for the signals.  It then occurred to me that I might be able to control them direct from the handsets so I did a bit of reading.  The MERG handsets don't allow control of DCC accessory decoders, but they will control a CBUS switching module.  So I have ordered an 8 channel CBUS relay module (CANACC8) and another servo controller.  I suspect I will end up using the CANACC8 to switch a bank of relays which in turn will switch the servo controller: I don't think it is possible to hook up the servo controller directly to the CANACC8.

All this is a bit adventurous for someone who has always been old-school 12V DC with toggle switches for everything, but it is basically the same operating principle that worked so well for Longframlington, with everything on the handset. The button sequence for operating accessories on the MERG handset is slightly cunbersome compared to just flicking a toggle switch but I'm sure I'll get used to it.  It can't be as bad as consisting which is a nightmare for this DC dinosaur: if there is a "one click" way to release both locomotives from a consist I haven't found it yet.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: maridunian on May 19, 2020, 09:40:54 AM
That subtle curve looks great and very realistic - begs the question why most layouts have perfect straights at all!

Before retirement I was based in Edinburgh and drove down to a branch office in Galashiels every few weeks. The A7 tracks the Waverley route, which when I started in 2011 had no track at all. Over my 6 years in post the line was restored and before I retired I was able to let the train take the strain. I can confirm that the northern end of the route also has very few straight sections as much of it follows the "Gala water" valley.

Mike
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on May 19, 2020, 10:32:40 AM
That subtle curve looks great and very realistic - begs the question why most layouts have perfect straights at all!

Mike

I agree, curved track makes a big difference to any layout.

Unless of course you are modelling the main line into Hull aside the banks of the Humber then it is straight track for miles

Stay Safe and well

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on May 19, 2020, 11:21:26 AM
Up line through the station now lifted and realigned.  The track came away very easily using a scalpel blade under the sleepers: as with the real railway, the ballast will play an important role in keeping the track where it should be.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-FQQD7Vw/0/c6c143e4/L/DSCN1829-L.jpg)

While the glue is drying, a taste of things to come:  a B1, 61184 of St Margarets, clanks across the viaduct with a Niddrie-Canal Class E freight. As the train heads through the station the exhaust of the B1 will gradually give way to the sharp bark of a J36 at the back which will bank the train to Whitrope.  V2s and Pacifics normally worked these trains single handed: the lesser B1s and K3s generally needed a banker. These transfer freights between Edinburgh and Carlisle were the lifeblood of the Waverley Route and I will have to build an awful lot of wagons.

Richard



That looks superb Richard, this is really going to be a layout to be proud of.

The freight is so typical of many pictures I have seen and I can just visualise my own sound fitted B1 echoing over the viaduct with J39 as banker making an equal amount of noise at the rear or the syncopated beat of A2 "Bachelors Button" pounding up the bank on its own!

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on May 19, 2020, 01:44:15 PM

I agree, curved track makes a big difference to any layout.

Unless of course you are modelling the main line into Hull aside the banks of the Humber then it is straight track for miles

Stay Safe and well

Mike H  8)

18 miles between Selby and Hull. Tonbridge to Ashford is 24 nearly-straight miles.

Best Wishes

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 19, 2020, 10:25:08 PM
Thank you everyone for your encouraging words. There's a very long way to go yet.  I suspect I will be spending this weekend wiring the two scenic boards - eight connectors of various kinds, seven busbars and assorted relay and control boards.  All for a section of plain double track with one siding.  I also have to make up various connecting cables (including some with "twisted pair" cables buried in them for the DCC handset sockets).  At that point, with luck, I will be able to run a locomotive over the viaduct.  After that, scenic contours.  Chicken wire and plaster-soaked bandages, or shaped polystyrene blocks?  I've never attempted landscaping on this scale before.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: dannyboy on May 20, 2020, 08:45:51 AM
Most of the scenic work on 'Averingcliffe' was done by using shaped polystyrene with plaster bandage on top. Plaster bandage I found to be very therapeutic, if a bit messy! You could try both your methods on a bit of scrap board first to see which you prefer.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: kirky on May 20, 2020, 08:55:53 AM
Most of the scenic work on 'Averingcliffe' was done by using shaped polystyrene with plaster bandage on top. Plaster bandage I found to be very therapeutic, if a bit messy! You could try both your methods on a bit of scrap board first to see which you prefer.
I always think its really interesting that as modellers we find so many different ways to do so the same thing. Plaster bandage I tried many many years ago and I didnt like the reslts (but I agree its very therapueutic), ive also used expanded foam, packing polystyrene, toilet rolls,  ceiling tiles, ply wood, chicken wire etc etc. My preferred method now is to use woven card covered in kitchen towel soaked in pva as advocated by Tony Wright. Its just another method.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 23, 2020, 07:43:18 PM
Another milestone today...

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ppJbb7t/0/99efda25/L/DSCN1857-L.jpg)

Having installed and wired up all the droppers, busbars, inter-board connectors and the feed socket from the DCC station I can finally run trains the full length of the layout.  Some very typical Waverley Route motive power here, with A1 Pacific 60162 "Saint Johnstoun" testing the Down line, and the still unfinished V2 (60882) and J36 (65331) just coming off the viaduct in the Up direction.  I had to tweak the check rails on the turnout slightly as 60162's driving wheels were catching: the part soldered, part glued construction makes minor adjustments fairly easy.  I have installed the actuating servos for the turnout and catch point although I don't yet have the control boards for them.

Next job is to put in the uncouplers, then I can ballast the track which should keep me out of mischief for the rest of the Bank Holiday.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on May 23, 2020, 08:28:58 PM
Another milestone

Congratulations on your milestone, it is always satisfying when you can get your trains running

Good luck with the ballasting

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 25, 2020, 11:10:01 AM
Ballasting in progress: an area where (in my humble opinion) many promising N gauge layouts start to come a bit unstuck.  People copy what they see on today's railway: big chunky stones, deep ballasted up to the tops of the sleepers, with a visible "shoulder" of ballast either side.  That is not how railways, even main lines, were constructed in the steam era.  This photo from Disused Stations shows the appearance I am aiming for.  Not just the appearance but the actual bit of track!

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-jd5tzNG/0/e5efdf9a/S/stobs%2026-S.jpg)

So I am using fine sand for ballast, glued with a diabolical concoction of PVA glue, IPA, washing up liquid and water.  Don't ask me in what proportion: I just kept adding ingredients until I had something which flowed nicely through the sand and set solid.

I hate ballasting and always want to get it out of the ways as quickly as possible.  This means I always try to take short cuts and always end up regretting in.  It's a job I do so infrequently that I can never remember how I tackled it the last time.  This time I started by dumping sand over the track, using a shaped balsawood spreader to level it, then applying the glue.  Bad mistake.  The Finetrax code 40, like real track has a clear gap under the rails (unlike Peco): the sand accumulated in the gaps and I am now having to work my way along, picking out the unwanted sand with a bent fine pointed screwdriver.  This is likely to take some time, especially as I have ballasted about half the layout using this method.  In the photo below the Up line has been cleaned up as far as the screwdriver: the Down line has not yet been fettled.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-cLffd4W/0/17480aa1/L/DSCN1859-L.jpg)

Second attempt: for the section south of the viaduct I very carefully and sparingly sprinkled sand onto the track, then tapped the rail tops with a steel ruler, working slowly along, to shake the sand level.  I then went back, applied more sand to any holes which had appeared and repeated the process, only applying glue (from a small plastic bottle with a fine nozzle) when I was happy with the appearance.  This will need much less cleaning up but I am not sure the ballast is quite deep enough.  There is a bit too much sleeper showing and it may need another very fine layer of sand applying.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-WdBMQZX/0/40d31a6b/L/DSCN1862-L.jpg)

Once the track is ballasted it will need painting.  I have done a very short section at one end for test purposes, using dark grey emulsion from a B&Q tester pot.  I think the base colour is a little dark here: I might try a slightly lighter shade, then weather it using an airbrush to get the final effect I am looking for (using colour photos of the line for reference).  The section of track I have painted could do with a bit of infilling as there are holes under the rails: but at this stage it doesn't look too bad.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-b6ZjbXC/0/44cbf93a/L/DSCN1866-L.jpg)

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on May 25, 2020, 11:37:54 AM
I agree completely with your observations on ballasting, Richard.  Having that photograph is certainly helpful.  I think your completed section of track looks wonderful.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: maridunian on May 25, 2020, 11:51:29 AM
I'd also agree that we all rush this tedious job!

I feel its worth getting the rails and chairs a distinct colour from the ballast and sleepers so I've used  these  (https://g.co/kgs/5yFgoR).

By all means  tone everything down a bit with a thin grey wash afterwards, but I find normal running with a steady accumulation of house dust takes care of that eventually!

Mike
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on May 25, 2020, 12:45:28 PM
Yes agree ballasting is a very tedious job, that we all hate doing and rush so we can get on with the things we enjoy, but taking time and doing carefully can save a lot of later issues.

I too use sand as ballast, and I have recommended it to many, who many now take it as the norm.

Stay safe

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on May 25, 2020, 03:21:07 PM
Lovely neat work Richard, it puts my own efforts to shame by comparison!

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on May 31, 2020, 02:51:19 PM
A weekend of swings and roundabouts.  I have pretty much finished the ballasting, a couple of rough spots to tidy up and then I can start painting the railsides.  The turnout and catch point survived being glued and painted, the blades still move freely anyway.

So I got on with the electrics.  I built up the latest two MERG kits to arrive, another servo 4 board and the CANACC8 switching module.  I then finished off the DCC control / power centre, made up a 15 way connecting cable, fitted the bus sockets for the handsets, fired it up and found that everything appeared to work.  So I set about trying to program the CANACC8, the plan being to use it to switch a bank of relays so that I can control shunting operations at the station using the handset rather than having a separate control panel for the turnouts and uncoupler.

I tried following the procedure in the instructions but nothing seemed to be happening.  I tried again, and then noticed the distinctive smell of overheated electrics.  The control processor on the CANACC8 was red hot and the paper label on it was starting to go brown.  I quickly killed the power and set about finding what I had done wrong.  At first I thought I had wired the relays incorrectly and shorted the outputs on the module but they were fine.  The module was now dead anyway so I disconnected the 12 volt power input and carried on fiddling with other things.  A little while later I noticed that burning smell again...

Finally I realised what I had done wrong.  The socket boards for the control handset have four terminals marked CANL, CANH, + and 0.  CANL and CANH are the connections for the bus which allows the various modules to communicate with each other.  + and 0 are the 12 volt power supply for the handset itself.  The CANACC8 also has four terminals marked CANL, CANH, + and 0. Unfortunately the function of the + and 0 terminals is different: they are a 5 volt output rather than a 12 volt input.  So I accidentally backfed the CANACC8 with 12 volts through the processor rather than the 5 volts it is designed to take, and unsurprisingly it died.  Lesson learnt: always read the instructions even when something seems obvious.

Luckily my mistake didn't kill the handset or base station so I can still run trains.  Here is a recreation of the scene at Stobs on 1st April 1970: running "wrong line" D5307 heads south with an inspection saloon, on what turned out to be the last train south of Hawick before the demolition contractors started pulling up the track.



Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on May 31, 2020, 03:17:04 PM
Richard,

You were lucky to get away with that, I did a similar thing, simply wired a din plug for the hand held controller the wrong way round and put 16v through the output, that soon smoked a little, but again quick kill and all survived.

Stay safe

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 03, 2020, 10:26:17 PM
Every time I start a new layout I make a solemn promise that this time I will route all my wiring neatly, use colour coding, document everything as I go along, and under no circumstances will I end up with a tangled mess of multicoloured spaghetti whose purpose is a complete mystery.  And then this happens. 

Every. Single. Time.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-BGRVj7d/0/9ea960ac/L/DSCN1878-L.jpg)

The colour coding plan fell to bits when I started running out of some colours of wire and decided to substitute similar colours.  Green is pretty similar to blue, right?  To be fair it will look a lot better when I have tidied up the routing with cable ties.  The main board wiring isn't too far off being done, once the replacement chips for my CANACC8 arrive.  I have put in servo motor feeds for the two signals and wiring for the block bells which the two operators (one at each end of the layout) will use to offer and accept trains.

Next big milestone will be when I transport the main boards to my workshop, reunite them with the storage loop boards and try to run some trains.  Hopefully that will happen before the end of this month.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: greenlaneman on June 04, 2020, 08:11:45 PM
belstone,
For your information, for problems with MERG kits, contact the kit sales manager by email: -
kitsales@merg.org.uk
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 06, 2020, 05:53:07 PM
Still waiting for a few bits to arrive so I can finish the electrics and start the landscaping, so I decided to make a start on the platforms.  These follow my usual construction methods, being made largely of balsa, with Metcalfe printed card stone facings.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-TSrsvpf/0/9a3a1f09/L/DSCN1884-L.jpg)

There were three recesses under the platform to provide access for the point rodding and cranks: one on the Up side in front of the signalbox, one directly opposite the box on the Down side, and another one closer to the north end of the platforms.  I suspect this last one was for the crossover which was removed some time before 1955.  Above each recess is a removable wooden cover on the platform.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-B6Vsn66/0/70d0d4f2/L/DSCN1885-L.jpg)

With the platforms in place (although needing surfaces, edging stones etc) I was able to temporarily position the structures I built a while ago.  Starting to look a bit more railway like here.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-2bNP8mG/0/1c64b6cb/L/DSCN1889-L.jpg)

June 1957: a grimy St Margarets "B1" pauses briefly at Stobs with a Carlisle - Edinburgh stopper.  Does this look like N gauge?

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-HJB8S3q/0/4d9f6d8d/L/DSCN1890-L.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 06, 2020, 06:04:48 PM
It's not a perfect replica but the main elements are coming together:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-hTScZHt/0/6531681d/L/DSCN1903-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Tpw9T8J/0/81a74f8c/L/stobs_NS207418-L.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on June 06, 2020, 06:08:53 PM
It's not a perfect replica but the main elements are coming together:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-hTScZHt/0/6531681d/L/DSCN1903-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Tpw9T8J/0/81a74f8c/L/stobs_NS207418-L.jpg)

Richard

Yes, yes they are, looking good Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on June 06, 2020, 06:37:05 PM

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-2bNP8mG/0/1c64b6cb/L/DSCN1889-L.jpg)

June 1957: a grimy St Margarets "B1" pauses briefly at Stobs with a Carlisle - Edinburgh stopper.  Does this look like N gauge?

Richard

Richard when I first looked at the photo, I didnít think it looked like N gauge, unfortunately the large screw head gave it away.

Coming on nicely

Stay safe

Mike H 8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on June 06, 2020, 07:29:50 PM
It's not a perfect replica but the main elements are coming together:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-hTScZHt/0/6531681d/L/DSCN1903-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Tpw9T8J/0/81a74f8c/L/stobs_NS207418-L.jpg)

Richard

Great progress Richard, from what I know of Stobs including many books and pictures of the station and surrounds already you are capturing the feel of the location quite brilliantly.

Inspirational work, a standard I shall aspire to even if I can't hope to match it when I eventually make a start on Heriot.

Roy

 
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 06, 2020, 10:19:23 PM


Great progress Richard, from what I know of Stobs including many books and pictures of the station and surrounds already you are capturing the feel of the location quite brilliantly.

Inspirational work, a standard I shall aspire to even if I can't hope to match it when I eventually make a start on Heriot.

Roy

I'd be the first to admit I have become a bit obsessed with the place.  I'm always studying photos trying to spot little details that I can build into the layout, like those access spaces under the platforms.  It was a small, simple station but there is a lot going on there if you look closely enough.

Heriot was a lovely little station but I'll be interested to see how you manage the scenic breaks.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on June 07, 2020, 11:03:59 AM


Great progress Richard, from what I know of Stobs including many books and pictures of the station and surrounds already you are capturing the feel of the location quite brilliantly.

Inspirational work, a standard I shall aspire to even if I can't hope to match it when I eventually make a start on Heriot.

Roy

I'd be the first to admit I have become a bit obsessed with the place.  I'm always studying photos trying to spot little details that I can build into the layout, like those access spaces under the platforms.  It was a small, simple station but there is a lot going on there if you look closely enough.

Heriot was a lovely little station but I'll be interested to see how you manage the scenic breaks.

Richard

Hi Richard

The only viable solution for scenic breaks for Heriot I will have in the likely space available given the topography of the area will be "holes in the sky" disguised as best I can with trees and vegetation.

Along with Steele Road and Stobs, Heriot is one of my favourite Waverley stations and one i have had on my list to model for many years, but unlike Lesser Bytham my current project it will be designed to be light enough to exhibit from the outset and i will make myb own boards.

Regards

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on June 07, 2020, 04:15:33 PM


Great progress Richard, from what I know of Stobs including many books and pictures of the station and surrounds already you are capturing the feel of the location quite brilliantly.

Inspirational work, a standard I shall aspire to even if I can't hope to match it when I eventually make a start on Heriot.

Roy

I'd be the first to admit I have become a bit obsessed with the place.  I'm always studying photos trying to spot little details that I can build into the layout, like those access spaces under the platforms.  It was a small, simple station but there is a lot going on there if you look closely enough.

Heriot was a lovely little station but I'll be interested to see how you manage the scenic breaks.

Richard

Hi Richard

The only viable solution for scenic breaks for Heriot I will have in the likely space available given the topography of the area will be "holes in the sky" disguised as best I can with trees and vegetation.

Along with Steele Road and Stobs, Heriot is one of my favourite Waverley stations and one i have had on my list to model for many years, but unlike Lesser Bytham my current project it will be designed to be light enough to exhibit from the outset and i will make myb own boards.

Regards

Roy

Heriot is quite close to me, Roy.  Please let me know if you ever want some present-day photographs of the location to help with your planning.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on June 07, 2020, 04:28:52 PM


Heriot is quite close to me, Roy.  Please let me know if you ever want some present-day photographs of the location to help with your planning.

Best wishes.

John

Hi john

Thank you, that is a really generous offer, when I start planning I will certainly take you up on it.

Kind Regards

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 07, 2020, 10:02:25 PM
A fairly unproductive day due to laziness.  At this rate the real railway through Stobs will have reopened before I get my model finished.  However I have made a start on the last and largest of the station buildings, the stationmaster's house.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-sNf2jb5/0/29921647/L/DSCN1904-L.jpg)

This was a bit unusual for the Waverley as it was set back from the railway and performed no function other than as a home: tickets were issued (and presumably the goods operation also) from a separate ticket office.  Construction will follow my usual methods: drawn on the computer using photos as a reference, an inner shell from mounting card, and then clad either in embossed Plastikard or Metcalf printed stone card, I haven't yet decided which.  Like the signalbox and waiting room this will have internal lighting in a couple of rooms at least, so it will probably need some kind of interior.  On the other hand, the curtains were probably closed at night.  But if I model it with closed curtains it will look wrong in daylight.  Servo-operated movable curtains? I've seen dafter ideas.

Meanwhile, a vision of past times to come:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-2gj8nMR/0/dc65ac72/L/DSCN1911-L.jpg)

A J35, 64499 of Carlisle Canal, detaches a vanfit for Stobs from Trip 13, the 07.00 Canal-Hawick as a B1, 61184 (St Margarets) approaches the station with the 06.35 Edinburgh-Carlisle all stations.  The crew of Trip 13 were on bonus and on a good day could achieve timings which were theoretically impossible, but even so the 06.35 must have been held up quite badly for the two trains to meet at Stobs.

I wish I'd been there.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on June 07, 2020, 10:14:59 PM
That's an intriguing piece of rolling stock behind the B1. Can I ask what it is please, Richard?
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 07, 2020, 10:56:47 PM
That's an intriguing piece of rolling stock behind the B1. Can I ask what it is please, Richard?

It's an ex Great Western "Fruit D", a Dapol model.  They were XP rated and steam piped, so they were often used for general parcels traffic.  One of the Waverley Route's more endearing characteristics was the habit of putting one or two assorted (very assorted) parcels vans at the front of even the fastest passenger trains, and quite often a couple of Vanfits at the back as well. This gem from derbysulzers.com shows a "Peak" on the St Pancras - Edinburgh "Waverley" express with a four-wheeled Southern parcels van tucked in behind the loco.  This is taken at Steele Road, six miles of 1 in 70 gradient still to go, and if that steam is coming out of the coolant overflow the "Peak" will do well to reach Whitrope. (Photo credit: Bruce McCartney)

(https://www.derbysulzers.com/45xxxwavtrain.jpg)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on June 08, 2020, 08:50:17 AM
[...]  This is taken at Steele Road, six miles of 1 in 70 gradient still to go, and if that steam is coming out of the coolant overflow the "Peak" will do well to reach Whitrope.  [...]

It doesn't look like steam heat time of year, even in Roxburghshire.  I expect that the driver will soon be wishing he had his 'A3' back!

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 13, 2020, 09:05:45 PM
Creating a landscape of Roxburghshire hills:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-mshFgBq/0/e3b18042/L/DSCN1919-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-8d6WXpc/0/e146a965/L/DSCN1920-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-D7dgP5W/0/06c5b79e/L/DSCN1918-L.jpg)

I'm basically making up the constructional details as I go along, based on ideas I have picked up from various places and using the materials I have to hand.  The blue stuff is 20mm insulating foam, with a basic framework cut and shaped to drop into the centre of the beam girders, and further infill pieces in between.  I used instant grab DIY adhesive but I'm not convinced it sticks polystyrene foam very well so I have gone round reinforcing the joints with offcuts attached with PVA wood glue.  Once the framework is in place and the glue has set I plan to add the roads, then cover the framework in some very thin (1mm) closed cell foam sheet that I intended to use as track underlay but decided against.  I am also gluing in strips of thin card to support the foam sheet.  The whole lot will then be covered with plaster-soaked bandages.

This has to be one of the most difficult bits of modelling I have undertaken.  The geography of Stobs is horribly complicated with slopes at all angles and directions: I have added two bridges as scenic breaks, and I'm having to compress a big expanse of open moorland the far side of the viaduct, and move other bits of landscape around to squeeze everything into the available space. The finished product won't be an exact replica of the landforms at Stobs but it has to look believable in its own right. 

Early days with this one, I have a lot of work to do here before I can commit it to plastering. I plan to spend the rest of this evening going through my Stobs photo archive and seeing what bits I need to change.  In other news, the replacement chips for the CANACC8 arrived and I can now control the points and uncoupler from the handset.  I still need to wire in the frog switching relay before I do too much more landscaping: it will be accessible from underneath, but much easier to do the initial wiring from above while I still can.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on June 14, 2020, 11:40:24 AM
That's going to be brilliant, Richard!
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 14, 2020, 08:14:58 PM
A bit more progress on a job that feels like wading through treacle at the moment:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-K8QSfGL/0/bb7c0d2a/L/DSCN1925-L.jpg)

A small section of embankment used to test my proposed top cover method.  Plaster soaked bandages slightly overlapped, then the whole lot given a coat of casting plaster mixed with sienna pigment powder and a dash of PVA glue.  I'm not entirely happy with the result: it has sagged a bit showing the outline of the formers underneath, and it isn't nearly strong enough.  Definitely needs supporting from below: I bought some aluminium mesh but it proved horrible stuff to try to shape and hold in place.  More development work needed.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-vGrV5mf/0/2a382ffc/L/DSCN1926-L.jpg)

The occupation bridge at the north end is the venerable Peco offering (a product now well over 50 years old and still going strong).  This is actually modified from a single track bridge and I need to do a bit more work on the shape of the arches.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Nx9hkfc/0/2d43855d/L/DSCN1928-L.jpg)

Valley bottom and sides starting to take shape.  This is one of the more complex areas with road, rail and Barns Burn all intersecting.  I need to find an easy and unmessy way of shaping the polystyrene blocks after they have been glued in place.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-khmpLV9/0/7b6189ef/L/DSCN1929-L.jpg)

Station house and access road. I'm really pushing the limits of forced perspective here: if you look at this aerial photo...

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-G5Dg6vR/0/3631810e/L/canmore_image_DP00073441-L.jpg)

...you can see how much I have had to shorten the distance between the station house and the road behind it.  As a result the station access road is a lot steeper than I would have liked.  In fact, looking at that photo I'm now wondering whether to get rid of the road at the back and just have trees to hide the point where the station access road meets the backscene.  The problem there is that in 1961 there were far fewer trees than in that fairly recent aerial shot. Something to ponder on.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: lil chris on June 14, 2020, 08:56:55 PM
Looking good there Richard, yes I know the problem with the formers I made the mistake with a hill on one of my previous attempts. You need plenty of cross bracing to maintain the shape you want. I am lucky this time I am making a hill on my new layout but it is just from scratch so not a reallocation. Mine has a tunnel underneath so I have boxed the track in this time with bits of hardwood and even card to protect the track.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 14, 2020, 11:07:47 PM
I almost forgot:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-b5mCXTF/0/7a6c7253/L/hawickpaper-L.jpg)

I had an email from a journalist at the Hawick Paper after he saw something I had posted on a Borders railways Facebook group.  He asked me for some more details, I didn't expect anything to come of it, but here I am in print.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: dannyboy on June 15, 2020, 08:40:43 AM
Well done Richard - nice to see your efforts in print.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 21, 2020, 03:16:58 PM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-hJgxDdW/0/f049d41f/L/DSCN1941-L.jpg)

Not much to report: I have been a bit short of time for modelling but have been picking at the landscaping in odd moments.  After a bit of experimenting I am now using aluminium mesh covered in plaster-soaked bandages for the basic landforms. I spent some time today blending in the viaduct and trackbed with DAS modelling clay, and I'm quite happy with the results so far.  No hurry as I keep reminding myself: even if I got the layout finished next month it would take me a couple of years to assemble enough rolling stock for an exhibition.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 21, 2020, 10:34:43 PM
I think I might have to redo the landforms on the station board.  I have made the hill behind the station much too big.  It towers over the station. Here's the comparison shots:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-8SVKdkw/0/e88ddb89/L/DSCN1944-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Tpw9T8J/0/81a74f8c/L/stobs_NS207418-L.jpg)

No big deal, it's all just polystyrene blocks at the moment.  I also have an issue with the area behind the viaduct: I don't think I profiled the join between the two boards correctly, so I have a savagely steep incline on the road after it passes under the viaduct and starts the climb up towards Barns. That one is going to be a lot harder to deal with, and if I don't do something the road up onto the moors will end up almost flat.  I've walked that road so I know what it should look like.  Better to deal with it now than spend the next ten years having to live with something that looks wrong.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 25, 2020, 10:13:43 PM
Second bite at building the landscape behind the station:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Nf4Sp7P/0/e7701792/L/DSCN1948-L.jpg)

The shimmering stuff is aluminium mesh, attached to the wooden bits using a staple gun, and with self tapping screws to pull it into shape over the polystyrene formers.  The screws only just have enough grip to hold the mesh in place, but once the bandage and plaster cover is in place it should all stay put.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-x7MjL4S/0/55030684/L/DSCN1951-L.jpg)

I used the zoom facility on the camera to try and get a similar perspective to the original.  Taking an inch or so off the hillside has made a big difference.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Q7nbrCS/0/5c374615/L/DSCN1952-L.jpg)

Starting to get an idea here of how the station will look, with the station house set well back from the platform and the ticket office next to it.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-R2TH429/0/2a5b8c9b/L/DSCN1953-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-wnsv8Sk/0/65bef36a/S/stobs%28lynn_jl_stevenson1950s%29old5-S.jpg)

Another comparison shot, this time looking North.  Original photo by J L Stevenson from Bill Lynn collection.

I still have to build up the embankment behind the Up platform, but hopefully I will be able to get some plaster and bandages down this weekend. There is a lot of scenery and very little railway in this layout: not everyone's cup of tea but Rule One applies to all aspects of the hobby :)

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: degsy_safc on June 25, 2020, 10:27:47 PM
Looks to be a very good reproduction based on the original photos Richard.

Very nice job  :thumbsup:

Cheers Derek

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on June 25, 2020, 10:31:48 PM
Richard,

I think that looks a lot more like the photograph, good to see you have kept the front face of the cutting and not been tempted to reduce the height there.

Looking good, a railway in the landscape

Stay safe

Mike H  8)

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Hailstone on June 25, 2020, 10:45:23 PM
I wish that I could construct scenery as good as this - jealousy is not the word for it!

Regards,

Alex
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on June 26, 2020, 09:00:42 AM
I wish that I could construct scenery as good as this - jealousy is not the word for it!

Regards,

Alex

Seconded!  Richard's own little bit of Roxburghshire in Norfolk.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on June 26, 2020, 09:29:37 AM
Inspirational work Richard, already it is starting to capture the bleakness of the area, and when finished to the standard I know it will be I think it is likely be by far the most authentic N gauge Waverley Route layout on the circuit (and in this I do include the rather fine Riddings Junction (1964) layout of many years back).

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 28, 2020, 12:11:42 PM
Stobs could be a bleak and inhospitable place in mid-winter:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-jzD6NR5/0/67b20b7a/L/DSCN1956-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-fdfmgM3/0/17326598/L/DSCN1957-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-BBh4Q3B/0/7af4f28b/L/DSCN1958-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-kSP6KfR/0/f8a65704/L/DSCN1959-L.jpg)

That's rather more than three-quarters of the basic contours done: just having a cup of tea and then I'm off to the DIY store for a sheet of plywood to make up the front panels.  Then I can finish off the cutting behind the Up platform and start plastering.

All this white stuff is POP bandage, laid dry and then brushed with water (as recommended by Barry Norman in "Landscape Modelling").  I am applying overlapping layers in one direction, then reinforcing it with more widely spaced strips running crossways.  Once this has dried thoroughly I will build up the edges etc as needed with DAS modelling clay (as I have started doing with the viaduct) then coat the whole lot with a mix of casting plaster, PVA and brown paint pigment.  The pigment is so that if the plaster chips it doesn't show up white.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: DCCDave on June 28, 2020, 12:30:15 PM
Stobs could be a bleak and inhospitable place in mid-winter:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-kSP6KfR/0/f8a65704/L/DSCN1959-L.jpg)


This is looking really good Richard.

Your comment about winter - did you ever think about modelling Stobs in the grip of a borders winter - I don't think I've seen a WR layout in the depths of winter.

Cheers
Dave
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: maridunian on June 28, 2020, 03:31:01 PM
Stobs could be a bleak and inhospitable place in mid-winter:
did you ever think about modelling Stobs in the grip of a borders winter - I don't think I've seen a WR layout in the depths of winter.

An interesting idea. Having driven the A7 many times with snow all around, I can confirm how magnificent it all looks under the cloudless blue skies that often follow the snow falls. The hills keep their snow long after the low ground thaws, so it wouldn't need all the buildings, track and trains to be sugar-frosted.

Mike
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 28, 2020, 07:41:24 PM
Stobs in the snow would make a fabulous model:  I have several unpublished photos of the station in midwinter.  I'm not sure how well a white landscape would age though: I suspect the accumulation of dust would gradually turn it grey.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on June 29, 2020, 09:41:19 PM
Inspirational work Richard, already it is starting to capture the bleakness of the area, and when finished to the standard I know it will be I think it is likely be by far the most authentic N gauge Waverley Route layout on the circuit (and in this I do include the rather fine Riddings Junction (1964) layout of many years back).

Roy

That is very kind of you Roy.  I'm certainly trying to get things right as far as I can.  I have just been re-reading an old magazine article from the mid 1970s where the late David Jenkinson put forward his ideas on how to create a model railway with atmosphere.  I doubt whether "Stobs" will do for the Waverley Route what "Garsdale Road" did for the S&C, but hopefully I will end up with a layout which answers Jenkinson's three questions - where, who (i.e. which railway company) and when.

Richard

Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on July 05, 2020, 01:05:19 PM
Still plugging away at scenery:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-NfG47ML/0/c5af1288/L/DSCN1965-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-rF93p8c/0/392be27f/L/DSCN1966-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-3PVskZR/0/e65627ae/L/DSCN1970-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-R29phmP/0/3e45efae/L/DSCN1971-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-fzkmrXN/0/bf680227/L/DSCN1972-L.jpg)

I have finally finished the last bit of wire-and-bandage base, the Up side cutting behind the station platform.  This is the boundary of the grounds of Stobs Castle and will be planted with trees.  There was a private gated walkway leading from the footbridge to the top of the cutting, with a footpath through the woods to the castle itself.

I have started the plaster coating and I cannot believe how much scenic material this layout is soaking up.  I thought 1.5 kilos would be enough to do the whole lot but I have run out of plaster.  While I am waiting for more to arrive I can do a bit of shaping and filling with DAS clay, and I also need to construct a farm access bridge to form a scenic break at the southern end.  In reality this structure was about half a mile further south, but I doubt many people will know that.

Looking at the latest photos I would say I have achieved what I set out to do here: build a model of a railway running through a landscape.  If you took the railway away altogether it would still work as a model, although probably not as interesting to look at.

Richard



Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Newportnobby on July 05, 2020, 02:11:56 PM
This is going to make a wonderful place for trainspotting and taking pics of trains :drool:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: degsy_safc on July 05, 2020, 07:24:39 PM
Looks great Richard, canít wait to see the trains trundling through the landscape, the photos are going to look pretty spectacular  :thumbsup:

Cheers Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on July 05, 2020, 07:37:13 PM
Richard,

The landscape keeps improving week on week, you should be well and truly plastered by now  :no:
Looking forward to seeing the greenery etc, what a difference that will make

stay safe

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: port perran on July 05, 2020, 08:06:54 PM
Excellent progress.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Stevie DC on July 05, 2020, 09:11:34 PM
I've just been catching up on your progress Richard, excellent stuff! I can only hope that Hadley Wood looks somewhere near this standard when I reach the point you have.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on July 05, 2020, 10:00:59 PM
Thank you everyone for your comments.  It really encourages me to get on and do some more work on the layout.  I can't believe how long it is taking me to construct what is basically an oval with one siding.  I have no idea how people find the time to build big station models with about fifty turnouts and dozens of buildings.  Maybe I'm just a slow worker. 

@Newportnobby (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=264) there will be plenty of trains to see, I promise you that.  The Waverley Route in 1961 had an astonishing variety of motive power, mainly ex LNER admittedly, but regular visitors to Stobs in summer 1961 included A1, A2, A3, A4, B1, K3, V2, D34, D49, J35, J36, J37, J39, BR Standard 2MT and 4MT, occasional ex LMS types (mainly Ivatt 4MTs, Crabs and Black Fives) and the first diesels on the route (classes 26 and 45).  That should provide a bit of variety.  I chose summer '61 for a reason:  by that time the big Pacifics were being replaced by diesels on the East Coast Main Line, and could turn up on pretty much any working from fast freights to Edinburgh-Carlisle all stations stoppers. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Nbodger on July 05, 2020, 10:09:54 PM
I can't believe how long it is taking me to construct what is basically an oval with one siding.  I have no idea how people find the time to build big station models with about fifty turnouts and dozens of buildings.  Maybe I'm just a slow worker. 

Richard,
Definitely not a slow worker, meticulous maybe.

Look at Hillsden I am still building it after 27 years, now that is slow

Stay safe

Mike H  8)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on July 05, 2020, 10:45:10 PM
Quick question: has anyone tried reinforcing their scenery with polyester resin?  (the stuff used for making glassfibre things like boats and Reliant Robins)  I'm finding that even with a thin coat of plaster on top, the mesh and bandage scenic base is very fragile and I can't see it standing up to life on the exhibition circuit.  My idea is to turn the boards upside-down and paint the underside of the mesh with polyester resin to give a light but tough scenic "shell".  Polyester resin is horrible smelly sticky stuff and if I try doing this in the house, I'm dead.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Hailstone on July 05, 2020, 11:58:58 PM
I was watching a TV programme today about the Waverley route and it showed Stobs Station and the fact that there was a nearby POW camp during the first world war - the platforms are still there and what is left of the footbridge, mainly the steel work. I hope when you complete this I will be able to see it at an exhibition - outstanding work, I hope you solve the fragility problem.

Regards,

Alex
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on July 12, 2020, 02:35:24 PM
Struggling to find much time for modelling at the moment due to work commitments, but I'm adding and shaping bits of clay and plaster when I can.  The station area is starting to come together: it is a shame I don't have a photo of the back of the signal box as I am not sure how access to the base of the box was arranged.  For now a couple more posed photos (being some way off running trains at the moment):

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-fX8HSHg/0/2153a1c7/L/DSCN1973-L.jpg)

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-V9Tfmx3/0/f9c3ab2e/L/DSCN1976-L.jpg)

By 1961 ex-LMS locomotives were starting to appear on the Waverley Route, with the section south of Riddings Junction having come under London Midland Region control in 1959.  Mostly Black Fives and "Crabs": one of the latter, 42832 of Carlisle Kingmoor, ambles downhill through Stobs station and across the viaduct with a Canal - Niddrie transfer freight.  Bogie parcels vans in goods trains seem to have been a Waverley Route "thing".

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Webbo on August 02, 2020, 08:26:05 AM
Just caught up with your progress Richard,

I like your terra forming and appreciate the fragility issue that might arise if you're going to cart your layout around.

My layout is comprised of shaped extruded polystyrene blocks covered by plaster bandage as you have done. On top of all that I have a generally thin layer of a substance called Scuptamold that allows me to provide detailed shape to the terrain including rock formations. Sculptamold is sort of like plaster in that it is mixed with water and shaped in place, and sets after a while  but it contains fibrous material that provides strength. It is tough and is somewhat flexible unlike plaster so I think it would be a lot more resistant to cracking. Brilliant stuff IMO. I had originally intended to cover my scenery with Hydrocal plaster but switched to Sculptamold as it was much less messy and was easier to use. I've got a 20 kg bag of Hydrocal virtully full if anyone wants it.

Webbo
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Bealman on August 02, 2020, 08:31:42 AM
G'day @belstone (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=2569) , nowt wrong with posing trains.

The scenes look great!  :thumbsup:

Looking forward to more!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on August 02, 2020, 12:17:16 PM
I agree, great to see prototypical trains posed on the layout with a little LMS infiltration, albeit thankfully the majority of freights continued to be hauled by LNER derived power until the end of steam, surprising in itself since Canal Shed closed in 1963!

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: crewearpley40 on August 02, 2020, 01:28:22 PM
Stunning work so far. Really good work on the viaduct
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on August 03, 2020, 09:33:39 PM
A tiny bit more modelling (literally):

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-tb4MJ8Z/0/2cb19ea9/L/DSCN2003-L.jpg)

The North British Railway built its platelayers' huts from timber rather than the more durable materials favoured by other railway companies.  Tight as a duck's bottom the NB directors were, but these huts were heavily creosoted and lasted a long time even in exposed locations.  A few still survive today.  This one was knocked up out of Plastikard from a couple of photos and an educated guess as to overall size: just needs painting to finish it off. Just the kind of detail that helps nail down the location, even when no trains are running.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Stevie DC on August 04, 2020, 10:43:21 AM
A tiny bit more modelling (literally):

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-tb4MJ8Z/0/2cb19ea9/L/DSCN2003-L.jpg)

The North British Railway built its platelayers' huts from timber rather than the more durable materials favoured by other railway companies.  Tight as a duck's bottom the NB directors were, but these huts were heavily creosoted and lasted a long time even in exposed locations.  A few still survive today.  This one was knocked up out of Plastikard from a couple of photos and an educated guess as to overall size: just needs painting to finish it off. Just the kind of detail that helps nail down the location, even when no trains are running.

Richard

Lovely stuff Richard! Are we starting a competition to see who can model the smallest building possible?!  :smiley-laughing:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on August 04, 2020, 09:07:51 PM
Bachmann have given me something to think about, with the revival of the DJM Clayton project.  I didn't see that coming.  Claytons were a big part of the Waverley Route in its last few years, but only from 1964, three years after the date I have chosen for Stobs.

I think I will run two separate periods on the layout, 1961 and 1966.  Regular steam workings over Whitrope ended at the start of 1966 but steam could still be seen covering for diesel failures (of which there were plenty) and also on various specials.  Diesels - classes 17, 24, 25, 26, 37, 40, 45, 46 and 47 all worked the line regularly.  The new corporate blue livery was starting to appear with the odd blue/grey coach breaking up the maroon sets. 

In reality, Stobs lost its goods facilities, platform shelter and signalbox in 1961 so the layout won't be quite right for the later period.  I can live with that.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Stevie DC on August 04, 2020, 10:48:09 PM
Bachmann have given me something to think about, with the revival of the DJM Clayton project.  I didn't see that coming.  Claytons were a big part of the Waverley Route in its last few years, but only from 1964, three years after the date I have chosen for Stobs.

I think I will run two separate periods on the layout, 1961 and 1966.  Regular steam workings over Whitrope ended at the start of 1966 but steam could still be seen covering for diesel failures (of which there were plenty) and also on various specials.  Diesels - classes 17, 24, 25, 26, 37, 40, 45, 46 and 47 all worked the line regularly.  The new corporate blue livery was starting to appear with the odd blue/grey coach breaking up the maroon sets. 

In reality, Stobs lost its goods facilities, platform shelter and signalbox in 1961 so the layout won't be quite right for the later period.  I can live with that.

Richard

I was surprised to see the revival of the Clayton as well (although I'll exercise financial restraint and not purchase one).

I wouldn't worry too much about the changes post 1961, as long as you're happy running them its all fine.  :)
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on August 04, 2020, 10:58:52 PM


I was surprised to see the revival of the Clayton as well (although I'll exercise financial restraint and not purchase one).

I wouldn't worry too much about the changes post 1961, as long as you're happy running them its all fine.  :)

I think a Clayton in Hertfordshire might be stretching reality a bit too far.  But if Bachmann follow it up with DJM's other diesel project, the Baby Deltic, you'll have the same problem as me.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Stevie DC on August 05, 2020, 08:54:09 AM
I think a Clayton in Hertfordshire might be stretching reality a bit too far.  But if Bachmann follow it up with DJM's other diesel project, the Baby Deltic, you'll have the same problem as me.

You're probably right about a Clayton in Hertfordshire, especially on a layout set c.30 years before the first one entered service!  ;D

I wouldn't have a problem if a Baby Deltic came out, the class doesn't do anything for me I'm afraid...
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on August 05, 2020, 09:03:21 AM
I think a Clayton in Hertfordshire might be stretching reality a bit too far.  But if Bachmann follow it up with DJM's other diesel project, the Baby Deltic, you'll have the same problem as me.

You're probably right about a Clayton in Hertfordshire, especially on a layout set c.30 years before the first one entered service!  ;D

I wouldn't have a problem if a Baby Deltic came out, the class doesn't do anything for me I'm afraid...

I have a maroon Quad-Art set that your Baby Deltic could pull....

(Runs for cover).

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Stevie DC on August 05, 2020, 09:09:12 AM
I have a maroon Quad-Art set that your Baby Deltic could pull....

It's not my fault that you made the mistake of not painting the Quads in teak!  :doh: :smiley-laughing:
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on August 05, 2020, 09:35:14 AM
I have a maroon Quad-Art set that your Baby Deltic could pull....

It's not my fault that you made the mistake of not painting the Quads in teak!  :doh: :smiley-laughing:

If I had decided to I would still be on the first coach!
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on August 16, 2020, 02:17:06 PM
I have got seriously bored with forming landscapes out of clay and plaster.  It is taking forever, everything is covered in dust and I have been struggling to motivate myself to keep going.  So I decided to experiment with a bit of ground cover.  I don't know what exactly was to the north-eastern side of the viaduct, all I have is an aerial photo from 1945 which shows a triangle of open ground.  So I have gone for rough pasture with a few wildflowers:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-KfbjSgf/0/541f79e8/L/DSCN2030-L.jpg)

Mixture of Woodland scenics fine foam, static grass and flock, glued down, vacuumed lightly to lift the fibres (I don't have much luck with static grass applicators) and then a coat of hairspray.  Only a first pass here, much still to do but at least it makes a change from plastering.  I'll have to cover it with a cloth to keep the dust out while I finish the landforms at the other end of the layout. 

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 06, 2020, 08:16:06 PM
Work on the layout has slowed, then ground to a halt.  So much scenery to do.  I've been experimenting with Woodland Scenics tree kits, but struggling to stop them shedding little bits of foliage everywhere.  The recommended Hob-e-Tac glue hasn't impressed me.  Someone suggested cyano but I haven't tried it yet.  I've done a bit more plastering and clay forming, and I think the landforms are almost done now, but it is dragging on and eventually my mojo fluttered away like a lonely sparrow.

What usually helps at this point is to do something different.  In my case that meant cleaning the track and working my way through various unfinished projects and non-runners.  Result:


I have also acquired a couple of bargains, hard to find at the moment with N gauge stuff selling for crazy money, but I got lucky:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-gvjVc7M/0/cc48b37b/L/DSCN2056-L.jpg)

Class 25s were uncommon on the Waverley Route, although a few appeared towards the end.  I've had a change of policy on locos and rolling stock: rather than work to one narrow timeframe I will be running a representative selection of trains from the last ten years of the line's existence 1958-68.  However, D5177's main purpose will be to replace D5307 on "Longframlington", my other layout.  As a Gateshead loco it will fit in nicely there, whereas D5307 was very much a Scottish beast and no stranger to the Waverley.  This model came with a DCC chip which works and will go in something else as Longfram is DC.  So far it has had a coat of dirty matt varnish to take the factory sheen off the paint and some very light weathering, mostly on the underframe.  It's a lovely model and was too cheap to resist.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-TtPGzHq/0/ffff75c5/L/DSCN2058-L.jpg)

This I couldn't pass up, especially at the price.  I don't even have to renumber it: 61099 was a St Margarets B1 and seems to have been something of a shed pet: it appears regularly in Waverley Route books, usually looking smart and clean.  Minimal weathering on this one, just dirty varnish and a bit of underframe grime.  It runs well enough but I will add weight as I have done with sister loco 61184.

I also picked up a green "Peak" which seems to be a bit of a unicorn model at the moment.  Cheap due to suspected split gears:  I'll probably give it the chip from D5177 and see what needs doing to it.  Identity for this one is trickier than you would think:  Leeds Holbeck shed supplied Peaks for the Waverley Route, but almost all were early split-headcode examples.  The only central headcode 45s I have seen photographed on the route were right at the end in late 1968, and blue.  So I'll probably have to change the nose ends and renumber the loco: cast nose ends are available I think, but renumbering will be tricky as my Peak has nameplates.  Rule One makes life so much easier...

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 06, 2020, 10:57:31 PM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-D9Jbtvv/0/0bdace46/L/DSCN2067-L.jpg)

Still a few details and rough edges to finish off, but nearly there: one of Hawick's J36s gives a sturdy shove to a southbound goods on the 1 in 80 through Stobs.  The J36s had a long innings on the Waverley Route, working long and hard on banking duties from Hardengreen, Hawick and Newcastleton.  Some, including 65331, had makeshift tender cabs to provide some protection from the Borders weather on the tender-first run back down the bank. 65331 (built 1900) came to Hawick in 1952 and spent eleven years there before moving north to Motherwell for its final few months.  Scrapped by Wards of Inverkeithing in 1964, no-one could say that the North British and its successors didn't get good value for money from the J36s. 65243 (the last survivor, now preserved) was seventy-five years old at withdrawal from service.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Leon on September 07, 2020, 09:33:51 PM
Richard, I haven't followed your stream, but it's my intention to begin with your intial post and catch up. I don't think I ever traveled on the Waverley Route, but have done the restored segment to the Tweedbank. If I have time left after I finish my layout I'd like to study the history of the Waverley Route and perhaps do an AnyRail layout based on one of the closed stations (Hawick, maybe?).

Leon
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: lil chris on September 07, 2020, 09:41:35 PM
Nice loco's there Richard, I love the J36 my kind of loco. I had the same problem with the Woodland scenics trees, I could not stop the trees in my forrest from shredding every thing everytime I came into the railway room, very frustrating. And has for the Hob-e-Tac glue it did my head in, it seems to stick to your fingers better than the tree's, I literally had green fingers whan I went downstairs after making the tree's, even swmbo commentated on it.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on September 08, 2020, 12:25:06 AM
(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-D9Jbtvv/0/0bdace46/L/DSCN2067-L.jpg)

Still a few details and rough edges to finish off, but nearly there: one of Hawick's J36s gives a sturdy shove to a southbound goods on the 1 in 80 through Stobs.  The J36s had a long innings on the Waverley Route, working long and hard on banking duties from Hardengreen, Hawick and Newcastleton.  Some, including 65331, had makeshift tender cabs to provide some protection from the Borders weather on the tender-first run back down the bank. 65331 (built 1900) came to Hawick in 1952 and spent eleven years there before moving north to Motherwell for its final few months.  Scrapped by Wards of Inverkeithing in 1964, no-one could say that the North British and its successors didn't get good value for money from the J36s. 65243 (the last survivor, now preserved) was seventy-five years old at withdrawal from service.

Richard

That is one fantastic loco Richard, and absolutely perfect for the layout, I wish I had the capability to produce a loco to that standard, Stobs is really going to be some layout!

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 08, 2020, 10:05:00 PM
Another long-neglected project nears completion:

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-ddgKhkz/0/325b9ae5/L/DSCN2070-L.jpg)

"Poundshop McRat" (D5316) started life as a Dapol Class 33 which was dropped from a great height and ended up on eBay as a non-runner.  I bought it and found the motor and drivetrain were fine, but the wiring and DCC socket were not.  For now it has a 6 pin socket and decoder bodged in, no lighting and a new Dapol body.  Bogies are very slightly different, underframe detail is wrong, but total cost was around £65 including decoder, about half the price of a new one.

Seeing as the wiring is already non-original I'm thinking of using this one to dabble in DCC sound.  The space between the bogies will just about allow a 5mm deep speaker, and there is plenty of room for a sound decoder if I hardwire it rather than using a socket.  I have been looking at various locos and trying to see how I can fit sound without losing any weight over the driven wheels: for some of the steam locos I might have to cheat and use permanently attached vans to house the speaker. 

The banking locos are a particular challenge as I can't use an attached vehicle:  my thinking there is to house a sound decoder and speaker in the brake van immediately in front of the banking loco and treat it as a separate "loco" within the same consist as train engine and banker.  The brake van would have pickups on the wheels.  Plenty of room in a long-bodied Stanier brake van for decoder, speaker and stay-alive capacitor.  No sound for the banker on the way back down the bank but the loco would be coasting through Stobs anyway.  I can't think why this won't work, unless the decoder needs to "sense" an attached motor for the sounds to work.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 08, 2020, 10:24:49 PM


That is one fantastic loco Richard, and absolutely perfect for the layout, I wish I had the capability to produce a loco to that standard, Stobs is really going to be some layout!

Roy

Thanks Roy, I have to say this one came out better than I expected.  It's my third scratchbuilt 0-6-0 (J27, J35) and I'm learning as I go along.  Next up on the butcher's block will be a J37, but not in the near future.  That little Kato tram chassis is perfect as a tender drive for old Edwardian steam engines like this.  I want to try one in a Group Standard tender: wheelbase is right and I have a spare B1 from which I pilfered the tender drive for one of my V2s.

Also on the wanted list: a D30 and / or D34 (Kato tender drive again), Standard 2MT (modified Farish Ivatt), D49 and K3, A2/3, a late double-chimney A3 (Salmon Trout or Prince Palatine), an A4, probably a Black Five, and sundry diesels (24, 37, 40, 47 and a Derby Lightweight DMU if anyone does a kit for one).  The sheer variety of motive power on the Waverley in its last ten years was astonishing.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 13, 2020, 12:37:40 PM
By the autumn of 1961, BRCW Type 2 diesels had taken over most of the passenger services between Edinburgh and Carlisle.  Filmed (with permission) from the private footpath along the edge of Stobs Wood, D5316 heads north from Stobs on the short downhill run to Hawick with the 1300 Carlisle-Edinburgh all stations, that distinctive Sulzer sound echoing around the valley.



Yes, "Poundshop McRat" has sound.  Digitrains Activedrive sound project on a Zimo MX649, with an ESU sugarcube speaker squeezed into No.1 end cab.  I'm seriously impressed with the result, and it is getting better as I play around with the settings and learn how to drive the thing.  The start voltage is set a bit high in this video, and I'm still having to refer to the instructions for all the functions, hence the delay at the start between guard's whistle, horn and the train actually getting under way.

Next up will be a steam loco which is going to be a lot trickier.  I have been looking at videos of various sound equipped steam locos from different suppliers, and most of them are rubbish IMHO.  I've only found one so far which is remotely convincing, but I suspect that as with my class 26, some of it is down to how the loco is driven. I still don't see how I am going to fit a decoder and speaker into the B1s or V2s, so I'll probably stick it in a (permanently coupled and wired) long four-wheel parcels van which would be equally at home as first vehicle in a freight or passenger train on the Waverley.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: cornish yorkie on September 13, 2020, 01:01:54 PM
 :hellosign:
Looks & sounds superb Richard, nice modelling  :thumbsup:
  stay safe regards Derek
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 13, 2020, 01:38:13 PM
Second attempt, CV3 set to 001 and a slightly more prompt departure. Don't ask about the train formation: I don't seem to have any brake ends at all.  Once over the viaduct the driver shuts off the power to coast through the series of snaking curves past Acreknowe and Flex, dropping down on a 1 in 70/80 gradient towards Lynnwood Viaduct and the approach to Hawick.  The Waverley was not exactly a high speed railway.




Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Roy L S on September 13, 2020, 03:18:22 PM
By the autumn of 1961, BRCW Type 2 diesels had taken over most of the passenger services between Edinburgh and Carlisle.  Filmed (with permission) from the private footpath along the edge of Stobs Wood, D5316 heads north from Stobs on the short downhill run to Hawick with the 1300 Carlisle-Edinburgh all stations, that distinctive Sulzer sound echoing around the valley.

Next up will be a steam loco which is going to be a lot trickier.  I have been looking at videos of various sound equipped steam locos from different suppliers, and most of them are rubbish IMHO.  I've only found one so far which is remotely convincing, but I suspect that as with my class 26, some of it is down to how the loco is driven. I still don't see how I am going to fit a decoder and speaker into the B1s or V2s, so I'll probably stick it in a (permanently coupled and wired) long four-wheel parcels van which would be equally at home as first vehicle in a freight or passenger train on the Waverley.

Richard

Hi Richard

This link takes you to the YouChoos install guide for the Farish B1. Everything neatly in the tender.

https://youchoos.co.uk/Index-Resource.php?L1=Guides&Item=N-FarishB1

I can speak from personal experience when I say the sound conversion works very well because it is my loco in the pictures being converted!

Edit: However be aware that it is the earlier Group Standard tender with the longer coal-space behind 61045 and this makes a difference.

Regards

Roy
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 13, 2020, 07:57:44 PM

Hi Richard

This link takes you to the YouChoos install guide for the Farish B1. Everything neatly in the tender.

https://youchoos.co.uk/Index-Resource.php?L1=Guides&Item=N-FarishB1 (https://youchoos.co.uk/Index-Resource.php?L1=Guides&Item=N-FarishB1)

I can speak from personal experience when I say the sound conversion works very well because it is my loco in the pictures being converted!

Edit: However be aware that it is the earlier Group Standard tender with the longer coal-space behind 61045 and this makes a difference.

Regards

Roy

Thanks for that Roy, but my B1s are Dapol and a different animal altogether.  It looks as though I can squeeze a speaker and decoder into the tender of 60882 (the loco drive V2) but that leads to another problem.  I've watched loads of videos and struggled to find a steam sound simulation that I would pay more than two Refreshers and a sherbert dibdab for, but of all of them the most consistently terrible are the Gresley three cylinder locos. Thanks to the late Peter Handford  I have a clear idea of what a V2 should sound like - basically this:



If anyone can point me in the direction of realistic steam sound files I would be very interested.  Right now i'm reluctant to commit serious money on anything I have heard so far.

Richard



Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Innovationgame on September 14, 2020, 06:33:09 AM
I must say, I totally agree with Richard.  I have seen quite a few videos with 'steam sound' locos and there appears to be no correlation beween the motion and the sound, particularly when accelerating and, even worse, decelerating when the regulator would be shut off.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 17, 2020, 09:19:16 PM
The introduction of diesels did not go entirely smoothly and steam continued to appear on Waverley Route passenger trains into the mid-sixties.  Filmed from the lineside, a St Margarets B1, in clean condition but suffering from a steam leak somewhere up front, makes a cautious start from Stobs with a stopping train for Hawick...



Dapol B1 with a Locoman Sounds / D&H decoder and "sugar cube" speaker in the tender.  it isn't quite finished and being Dapol, the B1 has decided it will only run smoothly in reverse.  However this video illustrates nicely a couple of points about DCC steam sound.  Firstly, the bass isn't really there.  Most steam engines woof rather than chuff, and you need to let your imagination fill in the gaps.  Secondly, you need absolutely prototypical speeds, which means driving the loco in such a way as to get the "right" sounds out of it.  As the exhaust beats are directly proportional to loco speed, if you wind up the speed too quickly the sound will make this very obvious. I have set CV3 to 125 which seems to work well for this loco and decoder.

The decoder actually has a Southern Q class sound file installed, but one nondescript two-cylinder mixed traffic loco sounds much like another.  By some fluke the synchronisation of exhaust with wheel rotation is very close to perfect, certainly not worth messing around with CVs to get it better.

Things I like:

The loco used to record the sound project had a "blow" on one of the cylinders and a slightly uneven exhaust beat.  Listening to those old Transacord records, that's how steam locos were towards the end.  Not the perfect, barely run in sound of most preserved engines, but a bit rough.

The way the exhaust beat strengthens after a few wheel revolutions from a standing start.

Coasting mode (with bearing knock, although not enough of it for my liking) simply by turning the controller down one notch.

Whistle sounds have a bit of echo to them which makes a huge difference.

Shunting mode is well implemented, easy to control the loco while keeping a realistic sound.

Things I don't like:

The way it throws random sounds in.  It seems to automatically decide for itself that what you really need as the train departs is a bit of coal shovelling or injector noise. If I want extra noises I can select them myself.  Possibly there is a way to disable this feature: I haven't investigated yet.

I wish the different suppliers would get together and assign common functions to the same function keys.  It is intensely annoying to find that F7, for example, needs to be non-latching for one loco and latching for another.

That's about it for whinges though.  Like the Type 2 diesel it's better than I expected and adds another dimension to my attempt to recreate the atmosphere of this long-closed but fondly remembered railway.

Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: lil chris on September 17, 2020, 09:35:38 PM
Looks good to me Richard and sounds good too. That landscaping will look awesome when you have finished it. I have only dabbled with one loco with sound a GF Castle,which is a it out of place my layout is LMS and I still need to learn how to drive it. I have pre-ordered a new GF 8f with sound, so I am looking forward to trying that one, rule 1 applies with the castle.
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 18, 2020, 11:30:10 AM
In the gloom of a December late afternoon another B1-hauled local train departs from Stobs.  In the goods siding a J36, returning from banking a heavy freight from Hawick to Whitrope, has been "put away" to allow the passenger train to pass.



Richard
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: Train Waiting on September 18, 2020, 01:05:36 PM
Great film, thank you, Richard.

Sounds like a cylinder drain c0ck hasn't shut properly.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Stobs (Waverley Route, 1961)
Post by: belstone on September 20, 2020, 08:50:52 PM
Essence of Waverley Route, circa 1964:  a grimy St Margarets V2 on a Millerhill - Kingmoor Class 4 freight forges up the 1 in 80 gradient through Stobs station, passing a BRCW type 2 on a Carlisle-Edinburgh passenger service.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-Ck5kpMK/0/991a29aa/L/DSCN2112-L.jpg)

I have spent a useful few days fiddling around with various incomplete models: my workbench looks much tidier than it did, and hopefully I can now get back onto scenic work.  60969 is the first of my two V2s to be completed: this is the one with the B1 tender drive.  60882 (loco drive) is awaiting weathering and a bit of mechanical fettling.

(https://photos.smugmug.com/Stobs/i-BNvgrTv/0/1ae8ac9a/L/DSCN2113-L.jpg)

Here is 60969 in cruel close-up: it suffered a mishap with the body so it has lots of filler in it, which together with my inept painting skills makes it look as though it was put together from a whitemetal kit.  I still like it a lot more than the standard Farish loco though. 

Richard

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