Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Station Building Part 4


Here is where I'm up to.

I used cardboard to mock up a rear wall. It looked pretty good so I cut some styrene to the right size and shapes for the doors and windows.

Next I painted the concrete awning sea mist grey (I think - it was a light grey.), the station building and interior were sprayed tan (the interior being sprayed on white styrene was  more yellow than the paint sprayed on the bricks) and the doors and windows were sprayed a dark blue as that's what the doors and windows at Dungog station are, according to Google Earth's Street View.

Today's effort was dry brushing different shades onto the brick work. It looked hideous so the airbrush came out again. I used earth and wood shades of brown and lightly sprayed them onto the building to vary the colours of the brick work.

Has it worked? I think so but I'm going to leave it a while and see what I think. If I'm not happy then it will be repainted again. Everything above is currently blue tacked together.

My man concern at the moment is that the platform bricks don't match. I'm not sure that it would be too bad if it weathered the platform bricks a bit.

Click here for the inspiration as I can see it from Google Earth.

Until next time.

Friday, 2 November 2018

The Station Building Part 3

It's been a hectic week with meetings and other commitments after work but I've been able to squeeze in a weeks worth of fifteen minutes or more.

The first thing to do was to cut out the roof of the building. I experimented on a bit of cardboard first. 


The curved ends were cut using a curve cutter. I'd purchased this years ago and finally took it out of its pack.

It seemed to fit well enough and once a couple of mistakes were sorted out the roof was cut out of, what I think was 60 thou styrene.

Once this was fitted well, I went to work on the pilasters. There were only two of these. I originally planned for three but it didn't look right. These were made but gluing three thicknesses of brick styrene together. They were also made in two parts - one for above the roof and one for below.


On the Dungog Station building, the pilasters stop a little above the windows above the roof. In hindsight, mine could have gone a bit higher. The building so far was blutacked together for the final photo.


Until next time.

Friday, 26 October 2018

Station Building Take Two

I spent a couple of days working on the disassembled Peco kits and they were looking very rough.

Time to try again.

Armed with a screen shot of Dungog station a sheet of Scalescenes brick paper, I cut out a suitable size wall and played around with windows and doors.

Next, I attacked a sheet of Slater's brick styrene sheet and came up with this:


The doors and windows are all Peco components. The glass doors had the side windows cut off. Underneath the three top windows will be an awning which will run the length of the building.

The backing of the windows and doors are about 1mm thick. I decided to make part of the building stick out 25 mm and the end with the solid doors only 5 mm from the back scene.


Between the first and the second top window is a wall. The other two windows will let in some light for the passenger section of the station. I am considering repeating the window arrangement on the rear of the building and to show some interior of the waiting area. I want to have a photo behind the station but I don't know where this will come from as yet.

The next job is to line the heads and sills of the windows give it a coat of primer and then paint the bricks.

As I like lists, so that I know what I'm doing, here are the next steps:

  1. Line the heads and sills of the windows and door frames.
  2. Create the decorative brick columns between the middle windows.
  3. Create the rear wall.
  4. Cut out the awning.
  5. Paint everything.
  6. Work out the interior.
  7. Assemble.
What could possibly go wrong? With luck, I'll be up to painting next week end.

Until next time.

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Thinking About the Station Building

The platform was glued and then thoughts turned to what was going on top.

Most of the platform is 30mm deep. There is a short 220 mm section which is 50mm deep. With this in mind, I have three choices: an extreme low relief building in the middle of the platform; a low relief building at the end of the building; or a mix of both.

Before I could work that out, I had to come up with a design. A flat roof art deco style would go well. This is because even with 50mm, there would not be sufficient enough room for the pitched roof to look right.

A couple of good examples are Dungog and Cronulla stations. However, Normanhurst and Thornleigh stations also came to mind - although they don't fit the art deco idea, they have flat roofs and look as though they can be made using Peco office building kits. This is handy as I have a station made using these.


Here is Thornleigh station. I hope Laing and Simmons don't mind me ripping off their image.

On the very first Sapphire Coast Line which I started on the Central Coast, I had made a main station building for the terminus using about 3 packs of the Peco Manyways Office Buildings. It ended up looking a bit like this.


It was never finished and it had to be repaired a couple of times after the wind blew it down of the layout and the cat dragged it down onto the floor.

The similarities are the brown windows at the top of the walls. I could try and take it apart and create a single story version and put a flat awning coming out from the top. After a bit of fiddling around I came up with this. I reckon that I could make it an extreme low relief but low relief for the entrance an include some interior detail. 


At the very least, if it doesn't work, I have plenty of windows and doors and templates to work with.

Here's a view with a train in it. I reckon it might just work.


Until next time.


Thursday, 18 October 2018

Back on Track

It has been about eighteen months since I last added something to this blog.

In the meantime, I have finished laying all of the track and I've been happily running trains. I even had one or two running sessions with some mates.

I've also been a little distracted by the extension, Billabong Marina. This is pretty much finished and now I need to focus on the main layout.

For the history, keep scrolling down to read the full story and fictional history of the line.

Where do you start?

Billabong Marina has taught me to start at the back and work forward as you won't damage any of your work when you do more.

With this in mind, I'm starting on the top station.

This location is a fictitious town west and up hill from Eden. It's called Awdry after a town on the last layout and ultimately after the creator of the Railway Series which I'm sure many of us grew up on in one form or another. I needed a name and this was the best one that I could think of at the time.

Here's the station.


It sits on top of the mainline behind Boydtown Yard. This view is from the oil depot. To the right where the MRC is, will be another dairy. The platform will be where the bit of timber is. Opposite the station is a small siding for a couple of cattle vans and maybe a spot for something else to unload.


In the corner is a siding for ballast wagons to be loaded. The idea was for most of this to be hidden but I couldn't hide a full train in there. I had a rethink and made the siding longer. The middle track is the mainline.


I've brought the ballast siding closer. I had thoughts about the blue metal siding in Richmond. A check in one of the Byways of Steam makes it sort of plausible. The siding will no longer be hidden and I can stick a couple of houses in the corner. Three is a little too crowded.

The line in the foreground lead to the brewery. Surely every layout needs one.


It's a Kibri Paulaner brewery kit. However, in making the ballast siding longer, I had to lose some land behind the brewery. The annex on the left had to go.


It will be replaced by Two grain bins. These are Faller kits and will be painted silver to look more like a local variety. The little building on the right might stay. There will be a lot of remote (meaning far away) shunting as this siding is not in easy reach of the operator, so I'll need to play around before I make a final decision.

These adjustments were  done over the the last couple of weeks since the October long week end.

I'm planning to spend 15 minute a day at least on the layout like I did on Billabong Marina. Click here to see the blog for this layout.

Today's effort was more than 15 minutes.

The wood for the platform was cut out. I printed some Scalescenes brick sheets for the brick work, I used the platform kit for the edging stones and tarmac. I've yet to glue the platform top to the wood but here is the result.

Not a bad start.

Until next time.

Monday, 27 March 2017

The idea in pictures.

This post is long. If you are really keen on reading it, make a cuppa and grab a bikkie first. There could be a few typos too.

What happened to the grand plan that was the Sapphire Coast Line? (Check out the post from November 8th, 2015 if you haven't seen it.)

There was fantastic staging but little access if things went wrong at the back of the staging yard.

January 2016 was spent putting the staging yard down. The control panel was planned but sensibility sort of kicked in. Discussions with the head track layer were had and he agreed that my plan wasn't that great after all.

October 2016 and January 2017 were spent relaying track. This time into a new plan. This plan has balloon loops at each end and the track is really one big oval with the occasional cross over between sides. There are no real up and down lines and every train (I've had three at one time.) follows each other.

Where did I get the idea from?

A couple of places. The first was this plan from Railway Modeller November 1984. Printed here without permission.


This article is well worth a read, if you can get your hands on it, as it explains the whole operational side of the layout. Quite often I find that UK layouts, though great, often have the fiddle yard to front style with little operation. I can't whinge too much that's what my original layout at this location was. For it's drawbacks, read old blog posts.

The problem with this layout was that it had a single track line. Great for solo operators or for regional lines but I like the hustle and bustle of suburban traffic. Let's face it. The Sydney suburban modeller has more electric units than he can poke a stick at these days. I wanted a double track line.

The second source of inspiration came from the Gosford City Model Railroad Club. I've been a member there for a few years and still visit it on Friday nights when I can. We had to relocated a few yeas ago. We are now part of the Kincumber Mens Shed. With the shed built for the club the committee went about coming up with a track plan. The idea was that it would be one continuous oval with the tracks running parallel until they his the loops at each end. The train would head out from the main station, travel the length of the layout and return from the direction it left in. I love that idea as it is an out and back layout and prototypical.

Lots of work on AnyRail was carried out and a new plan assembled. It is still along way from finished but it's going well.

Here's a tour of the line so far. Images were taken on an iPhone. Some of the quality may not be great but you get the idea.

Near the freight yard is a couple of loco storage sidings. We pick up 4494 in the yard. 

After leaving the yard and crossing to the Up Line, we pass the station throat, stop and then reverse into the carriage sidings. We are collecting a RUB set bound for Sydney. The carriage sidings won't be electrified so electric locos won't be able to pick up their trains from the carriage shed. The 79 class is parked for operators of electric locos to get their trains. It won't be a separate job. From here 4494 pulls forward and takes its train around the back of the station to Platform 1.

4494 awaits the signal to leave Platform 1 for Sydney. Sitting in Platform 4 is the local suburban train. In between Platform 1 and 2 roads is a through road so that trains can still run if both through platforms are full. Above this scene will be the station building and townscape. Most of the trains will be covered. I like long platforms but in a smallish space sometimes compromises have to be made.

I have no idea what the main town will be called. Traditionally it was Paddington South Coast. (See the first post for a shabby explanation.) In my old shed on the coast it was a terminus station with an overall roof. It sat under a clock with Paddington London printed on it and I had even made a little Paddington Bear with a Mr and Mrs Brown talking to him. I also like Paddington Station as I have spent some time over the years trainspotting there on holidays.

The train leaves and crosses to the Up Line and past the carriage shed. The white stuff in the background is Woodland Scenics 2% incline. Expensive but worth the cash for the fuss it avoids.

The train continues north past the main freight yard. It has five sidings. This will also be some open staging sidings. In the yard currently is an empty coal and a wheat train. When the whole layout is finished these trains won't need to be using this yard. 

This is the site of the first station out of Paddington SC (for want of a better name). I haven't got a name for this yet. Where the screws are will be the top level. There will be another short platform for the top branch. I'm planning a kick back siding to a couple of industries which will run above the carriage sidings. The carriage shed will be a short representation but will be the opening for full length sidings.

At the moment destinations from this yard are Bega Yard and Billabong Marina. I'm hoping in the next couple of weeks to finish a couple of other places.

The train is about to head into a tunnel underneath what is planned to be a brewery. The freight yard will be open.

The train comes out of the tunnel and past the entrance to the yard. The yard is accessible only to down trains. This location is called Two Bridges. I scribbled a rough description on some ply when I was piecing things together over twelve months ago.

The line to the right of the train is the passing loop and Platform 3. 4494 is on the terminating road for the suburban trains. The S Set from earlier will follow our train and turn around here. Interurban trains will also stop here as it is the suburban limits. Our train is an express to Sydney so it sails through the station.

Platform 3 is also the access to the top branch, which is yet to be built.

The train disappears into a tunnel. To the right is the Platform 1 Road of Paddington SC. Where the spray can is will be a cathedral and other town buildings. From here the train descends to the bottom level. 

Travelling at a moderate speed 4494 leaves the darkness after about a minute at Billabong Junction. Above the train is the entrance to the yard. There is a line here which leaves the Up Line and heads under Two Bridges and ends up at Billabong Wharf. Passengers change here for the short trip to Billabong Marina. To the left of the train is the small Goods Yard of Frogs Hollow. It is a location near Bega.

The train doesn't stop here so it races through Frogs Hollow Station. Above is Two Bridges Station.

After rounding the bend and past a tower for the hinges, (Two Bridges was named as it is two bridges for the tracks.) the train is about to vanish again into a tunnel. Above is the main station. The train is on the Up Line. The cross over from the Down to the Up is for use when trains are shunting at Frog's Hollow. The next track is the line from Bega to Tathra. At Tathra there will be a dockside layout with a passenger station and a few sidings. On of the sidings will be to a set of wheat silos, this is the closest track. The station and harbour will be a little cramped as it will be 30 cm wide. Another 30 cm will be allocated to a loco depot (or the impression of one.) This will be the main loco storage for the layout.

The train appears from under the bridge carrying Platform 1 of the main station and into Platform 1 of Bega.

Like the main station, only part of the train will be visible. At the end of Platform 1 is the Fat Controller. He'll have a little speech bubble welcoming people to the Sapphire Coast.

At Bega the interurban electrics will terminate as the overhead wires stop a little north of here. Electric locos will need to be swapped for diesels or steam. But this is a tad difficult as the locos will be under two layers of layout, so they can travel on a bit first before technically arriving at Bega.

From here the train continues through Tunnel Junction with some very reliable side mounted Peco point motors. When it appears is carries on past Twofold Colliery. This colliery will have the three tracks for loading coal and well as a flood loader for some QR hoppers that I have to go behind a Northern Rivers Railroads 421 class.

And it is back under the main freight yard, through Tunnel Junction again. The lever frame controls Tunnel Junction. The switches switch the three roads from the auto reverser to normal so that shunting in the colliery can take place while other trains go past. The curved track leading to a pile of stuff will go to a small industrial area of unknown industries as yet.

Magically the train turns into the return train from Sydney. It is now that locos can be swapped. There is a 46 class waiting to back onto the train to continue its journey south. 4494 rest in the siding next to the 46 and wait to be swapped for a northbound journey or, when built, it can retire to the loco depot at Tathra.

The trip has taken 2 1/2 minutes in real time. As Paddington SC is the only place to park a HUB set, the operator needs to take it back to the top. If they went out with an electric loco, they will swap at Bega, go for another trip around, swap the loco back at Bega again and the original train will head back to the main station. The job will take about 15-20 minutes.

Beyond the 46 class is the Bega Yard. Here the empty coal train for Twofold Colliery will be collected and after a couple of laps with some loco swapping, will shunt Twofold Mine and travel back to Bega Yard with a couple of laps as well.

Some shunting can be done here but I see this as a staging yard mainly. The sidings are smaller than the main yard so I will need to be judicious with what ends up here.

Hope you enjoyed the tour if you stuck it out.

Until next time.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Not the original plan...

It's been too long between updates. The plan was started and then stopped. Then a new plan was devised. A couple of feature of the original new plan were incorporated into the new new plan. Making sense? Maybe not but enjoy the clip.