Thursday, July 14, 2011

Building a model railway part 1

Recently I got my old model railway baseboard out from the cupboard where it had lain dormant since about 2004. I've always liked model trains and in the past 2 weeks the bug has bitten deep.

I decided to take up some of the track and reformat the layout. The orginal lay out looked like this - a loop and two sidings.

It was pretty basic and so I decided I wanted to add in another siding and maybe a reverse siding (or two) to lead to an engine shed.

There was a problem, though. When I laid this track I had made the passing loop far wider than it needed to be by adding in some non-standard pieces of track. Unfortunately that threw off my intended new siding so that it ran at a crazy non-parallel angle.

The non-standard add-in piece can be seen in this photo. Removing it also meant I could fit in an extra siding without losing too much track off the top siding.
So up came the track! And down went new track after painting on a roadbed for it.

You can see how the loop track is much closer together, leaving room for two extra sets of points.

The small divergence at the bottom of the picture will eventually be inside an engine shed. I have put in a loop of wiring to power the track from both ends, which means the reverse siding has power. (Bit of trial and error but it works.)

There are still issues with this layout. I'd like to run a platform on the left-hand side, but that track isn't straight on the baseboard (it's the last remaining original length of track from the old lay-out). I have a growing urge to take it all up and relay the lot of it, with proper measuring this time.

I could also shorten the loop and add a few valuable centimetres to the second siding. This is important because the theme of the railway is going to be a railway heritage centre, and I need extra space to store rolling stock.

Speaking of which, now I've bought all the track I felt it was time to treat myself to something new to go on it. I already had 11 wagons and 2 locos from when I first put it together (mostly gifts from my Dad, it has to be said). But today I went and bought myself a crane train from the Hornby Railroad range. HR is the cheaper Hornby stuff made using older moulds, but that kind of fits the bill for a heritage railway! The crane works and I'm very happy with it.

There's plenty of work still to do and I'll be posting updates!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting this. I'll watch your progress. Of course, this model railway simply serves to remind me (jokingly) that I need to get a layout myself. After all, in western civilisations you're not a proper Christian man unless you've got a model railway layout!