Sunday, 31 October 2010

A WWII Theme

After having taken delivery of some stuff for the layout I opened the parcel which, amongst other things, contained two WWII narrow gauge bogie rolling stock opens. These were promptly constructed and now await painting. Inside the box were 2 more packs of corrugated iron (the shop had run out of corrugated asbestos so I decided to go for the wriggly tin instead as it is a close match). This allowed me to spend this afternoon building the hangar. This hangar has caused me a lot of grief so far - mainly because the doors keep falling off despite internal bracing. Therefore in the shots below they have all been balanced and are not glued hence any funny positions. Also, the roof has been a pain to build due to silly mistakes I kept on making and has also been balanced on top! The hangar does look a lot better than yesterday and once a coat of paint is on it it should look a whole lot better. The Plastruct sections from my original radar tower will be used as detail for this hangar. Still quite a bit to do but it's slowly getting there...

Wednesday, 27 October 2010


Something I've never seen on a model railway is a radar tower - well here's my unfinished version!
Need to add a ladder, railings, and a proper support for the radar itself. I really need to sort the castle out.

And to keep you up to date I have rethought the radar tower and given it a sturdier tower from an old Hornby pylon:

Hangar progress...

Slowly getting there, but I've run out of corrugated asbestos sheets - annoying because there was only one pack left at the model shop. Never mind - I shall have to source some from an online retailer - along with some plasticard sheets and some more Plastruct bits, Silflor, 009 couplings and some cement rendering plastic sheets.

In the photos below the roof and lattice truss on the hangar has been balanced on top of a Parmesan cheese tub.

This shot looks bad in colour, but quite good in B&W:

Now I need to paint and assemble the pipe bridge in the background, and once I have everything I need, fully assemble the hangar and paint it a whitish colour. It also looks like I need to get some glaziers in to do the castle windows! Then the coastguard buildings on top of the castle will be built along with the quick firing guns before being painted.

An alternative (i.e more stable) radar tower? Spot the RTPlonk product!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Late night dodgy photos!

Today I'vebeen able to pay a visit to the local model shop and pick up some Plastruct sections and some corrugated asbestos sheets (and a length of 009 track for the new fiddle yard when I get round to building it!).
This is the result:

Tomorrow should see some more progress on the new hangar, pipe bridge and castle radar buildings.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Where I'm headin' next...

It's been a fair few weeks since I've actually done anything productive on the layout. The only thing I have done is print out the information panels! I'm now looking to do two major things:

  • Sort out running issues
  • Add some details
Sorting out the running issues
After a very quick scour over the layout, the probable source of the running issues has become clear. Firstly, there is a tiny amount of glue between the stock rail and the check rail of one of the standard gauge points. Secondly, despite masking the track, paint from the grey aerosol for the inset track has managed to get on the rails in quite a few places - notably in more inconvenient spots. The NG seems to be running OK with only a couple problems to attend to.

Adding some details
I've drawn up a plan which shows the next step in the construction of the layout. Part of this can be seen (in a bad sketch) below:
Basically the idea is that at the moment, the layout does not give a big enough flavour of the prototype location as it may have looked in about 1944-45. To achieve a greater realism I  have decided to add:
  • RAF personnel - cycling, in RAF vehicles, around guardhouses and gates, opening hangar doors, on slipway
  • Parked RAF vehicles, aircraft undergoing maintenance, perhaps a small vessel by the sluice at the rear of the layout, a jetty with crane
  • Other details such as crate, supplies, aircraft spares
  • New structures such as radar tower and associated buildings on top of the castle, water tower near the scenic exit, a couple of stores around the outside of the castle
  • New stock - this is a possible rather than probable suggestion because the prototype only had two types of wagons. I would however like some larger wheelbase stock to cope with the points better
I'm hoping this will make the layout much more interesting to look at and bring back a feel of what it really might have been like. A couple of things on which I am struggling include creating a way to disguise the scenic exit (I'd love to hear any suggestions!) and filling the area to the right of the hangar, behind the goods platform.  So far I can only think of an oil tank surrounded by a concrete wall. However, another idea is to make the platform larger to form a  kind of interchange between standard gauge and narrow gauge.

Oh yes, almost forgot -  I intend to build a new fiddle yard based on experience of exhibiting the layout so far. This will include half a loop of NG to be able to run NG trains around whilst shunting the SG. I expect the SG part of the fiddle yard will be a traverser although I have not fully decided.

The sketch above is an idea for hiding the scenic exit as are the photos below