Sunday, 30 June 2013


Freight marshaling is a fascinating operation because it demands planning for the efficient movement and placement of wagons in the Goods Yard. On a small layout it is an essential activity in order to increase operational interest.

Typical freight handled at Cliddesden are timber, wooden manufactured products and agricultural produce moved out; building materials and coal moved in.

The simplest product to model is timber but when you consider a 6 inch plank is only 1 mm wide then the practicality of modelling individual planks could be troublesome. My solution is a large block of balsa wood scribed to represent planks, although the scribing is barely noticeable until a sharpened lead pencil is run along the cuts. The planks are 'tied' in bundles using thin wire that is poked into pre-drilled holes.

The ends are 'painted' red using a felt tip pen lightly rubbed over.

All sides of the loads are modelled so that the same load can be used in a wagon or placed on the loading platform.


Sunday, 23 June 2013

Show Time - Part 3

The stand skirt is one length of 1.4m wide, 100% black polyester cloth labelled as 'banqueting cloth' in the shop so, I guess it is meant for covering table tops. It was inexpensive compared to other grades of black cloth at only £2/m and is quite opaque. The ends were folded and stitched for the required length and height and then fixed to the frame with hook and loop sticky pads.

Black is the traditional colour for framing exhibition model railways as it highlights and focuses attention on the model but, I have subsequently read suggestions that a brown material is just as effective to focus attention but gives a lighter mood and blends with the model, suggesting the underlying earth of the landscape.

Beneath the table top two miniature speakers have been positioned at each end of the main railway track, fixed with hook and loop sticky pads. We plan to play sounds of the landscape and the trains as they pass through.

The LCD monitor is fixed to a pole which clamps to the frame. A presentation introducing the historical basis for the model  and explanation of cameo scenes built into it is shown and from time to time the train roster to support the arrival and departure of trains can be shown.


To Part 1

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Show Time - Part 2

Continuing with our list of stand preparation work this photo shows the added bracing to stop wobble.  Wanted to keep the assembly as minimal as possible so one brace added to each end and two to the front held with M6 bolts screwed to the frame. For transportation we remove the top bolt and swivel the brace parallel to the uprights.

The table top is also shown, made from 6 off 3' x 1' melamine shelves that we had stored for the past 20 years or so! One of these has a hole cutout for the railway umbilical power/control cable. The railway layout is simply placed on top of the table top.

The kitchen cabinet underneath is not part of the kit. The odd shaped mdf panel up against the wall is the cut-off from the model railway landscape base.

To Part 3

To Part 1

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