Saturday 4 May 2024

In the garden

Since my last post I've rebuilt 'Monster' which is my version of a skip chassis with a Lister power unit as seen on the world famous. I had the first version in action on my cheese factory layout but the loco got caught on something and the Portram chassis overheated and melted into a blob of plastic, expensive and annoying. Any old how with the impending Minffordd show including the cheese factory I decided, like Dr Frankenstein, to rebuild 'Monster'. I'd kept all the bits so it was just a case of finding a suitable ROCO skip chassis and stealing a Portram from a suitable donor loco. It actually went back together better than MK1 so it lives!

This is 'The Vicar's Tea Party', my new layout that I will be working on during the Minffordd show. I want to get it nearly finished by then so complete woodwork and trackwork and major scenic elements in place.

It has a 009 circuit and a section of 00 gauge track at the back, both are controlled by the same controller using a DPST switch to swap between them. There is also a circuit of Busch HOf track which was very expensive and which is actually quite awfully made; I'm just using the battery switch box that came with a started set to run this.

The Busch controller and the selector switch and the isolation section which is the 009 siding.

I sprayed the 00 gauge with brake dust Railmatch paint and added a substantial buffer stop at both ends to prevent any runaways being costly. I have used an a crylic paint pen to colour the rail and chairs. I will make some sort of attempt at proper ballasting on this. I've never done any 00 gauge ballasting so am a little wary. I treated myself to a Dapol 0-4-0 and a brake van as a suitable small train.

Here is the whole thing with all the woodwork complete and the backscene in place.

There are two stations on the 009 circuit, this one will be near the house. Both have a piece of plywood cut to size as the base and this one has a embossed plastic covering. (Noch?)

This is the other station which forms the transfer point to the SG line.

I've buried the HOf track in stonepaste which seems to be same and paint in PVA, it was quite simple to brush into place, I've kept the rail surfaces clear so hopefully all will be well. It is still wet at the moment so I haven't had a chance to try it.

The most recent addition is a grass mat representing the lawn. You can see the relationship between the Vicarage and the little station. There will be a double level crossing leading to the front of the house.

Here is the other station in place. It will have a taller section at the back to allow boarding of the van. Where the two sidings run parallel I will have an open barn type structure with watering facilities etc. At the far end of the standard gauge line there will be some sort of rickety engine shed.

Overall, I'm pretty pleased with this project and hope it will be entertaining at least to look at if not especially to operate.


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