Monday, 21 November 2011

Rusty rails

 One of the tedious tasks when building a layout is to paint the rails.  There are various methods nowadays ranging from spray-painting the track in situ to a rather natty looking gizmo I've just discovered on the web which uses a tiny foam wheel to apply the paint to the rail sides.  I opted for the old-fashioned brush painting way.  As long as you get comfortable, put some decent music on and concentrate it soon gets done.  Rather than using a paint shade marketed to portray rusty rails I use ordinary Humbrol Matt Leather enamel (62) suitably thinned down.  To my eyes the branded "track colour" is simply too dark in a small scale.   

It works!

A couple of weeks ago I finally completed the wiring on my new layout "Chipping Compton".  Test running it was successful apart from a minor wiring error which was soon remedied.  As on previous layouts the points are controlled by using the simple wire-in-tube method but this time rather than using metal tubing for the wire to run through I used PTFE tubing.  Model Signal Engineering sell a nice low-price kit.  The tube runs can just be seen running across the board on this view of the scenic section of the layout.  As I had used 1/8 cork sheet to cover the ply baseboard it means the tubing is hidden nicely in narrow trenches in the cork meaning it is flush with the surface.   The shaped blocks at the foot of the backscene will be hidden by scenery and are there to provide additional support for the backscene. 

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Nostalgia Corner

Back in the 1970's the Malmesbury area group of the 3mm Society exhibited a lengthy branch line layout.  I first saw it at the Wales & West of England show which in those days was held at the Victoria Rooms in Whiteladies Road, Bristol.  This layout was certainly a major factor in my decision to switch to 3mm scale.  Looking back to old show guides of the time it was either called The Acton Turville and Milbury Railway or The Foxham Extension Railway and was certainly unusual for the time as it operated with full bell codes and real block instruments.  If you have any more pictures of this layout or even recognise yourself in this picture please leave a comment.  The late Paddy Lockstone was I believe responsible for the model of the station building in the centre foreground which is a replica of that at Malmesbury station.