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Author Topic: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's  (Read 4173 times)

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Offline Ted

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Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« on: April 27, 2020, 07:23:34 PM »
Hi folks,

I wanted to start a thread to share my plans, progress and thoughts on my new loft layout.

It will run through Shirebrook (big nod of inspiration goes to Duncan for his Shirebrook layout on RMweb).

Freight loads supply/demand:



 
Locations (on/off scene) for supply and delivery:

   
  • Oxcroft Coal Disposal Point
  • Long Eaton Oil distribution depot
  • Knottingley or Worksop Glassworks
  • Stanton Ironworks
  • Cement Terminal
  • Scrapyard
  • WH Davis
  • Mansfield Sand
  • Charringtons Fuel Terminal
  • Ironbridge Power Station

However, due to the Covid19 I'm not able to have the loft kitted out by the carpenter just yet. The Velux and insulation panels are on hold until we're safe to let people in the house.

Therefore, I'm building models and components for the layout, ready to go up.

It will be a 2 x 4ft open board, modular design on DCC. Totalling an approximate space of 10 x 14 x 10ft.

I started collecting N Gauge locos and paraphernalia 18 months back. I am a novice by most standards, so please do provide your feedback where appropriate.

---

I will update this first post with layout diagrams as I go.

---

An overview of the space I'm working with:
 

I have a detached house with hipped roof on all sides. This means the loft space headroom is reduce by 8-10ft each side. Denoted by the hard grey lines on the drawing.

There's a bloody great big triple chimney stack off-centre too - but that has to stay! ;-) I've estimated 14ft (1ft per grid square).

I'm very tempted to use helices to run trains under the layout to staging/storage areas. This is a an A to B to C layout, not a big loop. A helix allows me to run a train off scene and then back from the same place again later on. The storage yards could even be loops of 8-10ft themselves.



Shirebrook station and shed:



I've refined the track to as close to prototype as I can get, to scale.

The top left double-track will roll off behind trees/landscape to a hidden siding. That siding could be considered storage and/or a destination (the train will come back later).

Cement Terminal:



 
« Last Edit: May 03, 2020, 11:38:00 AM by Ted »
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2020, 07:26:28 PM »
Some images of the modified Midlands signal box I've been working on - a bit of kit bashing as you'll see, it's reduced down a third in size from the original with alterations to glazing, roof and walkways.

It needs weathering and some final details, but nearly done:




I need to add the cable run/trunk along the front - is that a wooden board/plank with metal hooks, it's hard to tell from images?


Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2020, 07:31:09 PM »
Testing my first loops of the helix.

Stopping and starting on the gradient with 11 pieces of stock and my trusty Class 25.



 
  • 3rd degree radius Peco set-track (for testing)
  • Not cleaned, straight out of the box - 1 power connection
  • Gap between levels is 50mm
  • Clearance is at least 15mm, so plenty of room

The small BoBo loco having no issues whatsoever on a 2.7% gradient with 11 wagons.

However, what I found is that at around 18 wagons the covhops would randomly decouple. Up to 15 was absolutely fine, then 18+ is a gamble. A runaway train is not what I want, especially if it happens at the top of the loop... !

I tried a CL37 and that did the same.

So, I need to either reduce the height between levels down from 50 to 45mm, or even less.

I'm ordering some plastic pipe that I will cut to lengths of 41, 43 and 45mm to test again. I know at 41mm the clearance will mean I can't easily get my hand in to right any derailments. However, good track laying and clean gradients will reduce the risk of derailments (I didn't experience any whilst testing at various speeds).
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2020, 07:36:27 PM »
This is my idea for the right hand lower corner of the layout. Based on "Northenden Cement Terminal" which isn't in the area, however I really like the simplicity and odd(?) setup, in that shunting appeared to happen on the main line? I prefer it to Beeston which is 'up the road' from the area.



Notes:
   
  • It would make for an 8foot section of mainly scenic.
  • The cement terminal would have capacity for 24x preflos on each siding.
  • A modest opposing gradient would add a little interest i.e. not flat.
  • Plenty of opportunity for industry in front of the line.
  • A bridge either end.

I'm wondering if this is a good use of space.
 
Also, it makes for an unusual scenic as the bulk of the operation will be in the foreground in front the running lines.

Any issues in doing that?

Here's the present day arrangement -

« Last Edit: April 27, 2020, 07:37:33 PM by Ted »
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

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Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2020, 07:47:26 PM »
Theres an article in model rail re hope valley cement.  Lafarge at mountsorrel and trent ratcliffe power station also spring to mind
« Last Edit: April 27, 2020, 07:48:27 PM by crewearpley40 »

Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2020, 07:51:43 PM »
Theres an article in model rail re hope valley cement.  Lafarge at mountsorrel and trent ratcliffe power station also spring to mind

Thanks, do you mean the latest issue - https://www.model-rail.co.uk/latestissue/ ?
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

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Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2020, 07:53:39 PM »
Yes, ted

Offline jpendle

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2020, 08:58:10 PM »
What's the radius of the helix?

Once you get enough drag on the couplings by adding more wagons there can be tendency for the whole rake to be pulled inwards against the curve.

Now when you add in the gradient you're more likely to see uncoupling rather than derailing as your wagons are all at different heights. You could try permanently coupling the stock, but then you might find your rolling stock derails and falls into the middle of the helix.

If you have the track and the space I'd suggest you see how a long train does on a similar curve on the flat, and then work from there.

Regards,

John P
Check out my layout thread.

Contemporary NW (Wigan Wallgate and North Western)

https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=39501.msg476247#msg476247

Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2020, 09:10:29 PM »
If you have the track and the space I'd suggest you see how a long train does on a similar curve on the flat, and then work from there.

Thanks John, good idea to test the 'max' on the flat and then work on the gradient. Sometimes it's the simple ideas!  :)

I'll test 20+ covhops and see how I get on, on the flat.
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Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


Offline gavin_t

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2020, 10:30:09 PM »
Sounds like my kind of era and style, will follow this one  :D

Good luck and certainly looks like good work so far

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2020, 08:16:40 PM »
Further measurement and inspection of the loft (with some better lighting) has shown I can't go behind the chimney. There are also some obstructions structurally, so I've decided to cap the width at 12ft.

This means compromise for now, however I've made the layout flexible.

- The important area is two 4x2ft boards.
- I will then add a fillet board on the left side, this can be scenic but is also 'less vital' in a future move.
- On the right side I'm thinking a 3ft board, which can easily be extended to 4ft when I move in the future.
- That shoots off to the cement works and another helix.
- Note the tip of the TMD actually reaches across the second board, but I've kept it to scale and this should be okay (slot in place)?

This gives me a decent running area, with two yards fed from the helices. Trains can't loop, they have to reach a destination and return.

Any feedback would be brilliant, I am a novice at this!

Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2020, 08:18:49 PM »
Shame about the chimney . The plan looks good ted. Do keep asking questions

Offline Ted

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2020, 08:23:11 PM »
Shame about the chimney . The plan looks good ted. Do keep asking questions

It's just got too many sticky out bits, we're going to box and insulate it off so you can't get behind it.

At least having 8-10ft on the other two sides allows me to run full length rakes, so I'm happy with that at least.

Just waiting for it to be safe to get the carpenter in. The loft is a big job and being honest, I'd rather pay someone to do it!
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2020, 08:29:31 PM »
For sure. Planning is crucial up there. Plenty of advice here on lift layouts what with temperatures and obstacles like the chimney

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Re: Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2020, 04:32:19 PM »
Revised Shirebrook station and shed layout.



I've refined the track to as close to prototype as I can get, to scale. So I've removed the down line headshunt near the station, one less point to worry about.

Again, the top left double-track will roll off behind trees/landscape to a hidden siding. That siding could be considered storage and/or a destination (the train will come back later).

I'm much happier with this now.
Just call me Ted, or Edward... or Ed.

Just not Eddie.

Layout & Updates > Midlands Coal & Freight, Late 1980's


 

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