Sunday, October 22, 2023

Go the mighty C's

Waiting for their next assignment.

 The long awaited C class have finally been delivered from Auscision and now form part of the backbone of the East Coast Rail fleet. In the above photo they are arranged around the turntable, something like was created by the Streamliners that surrounded the Goulburn turntable some time ago.

The C class are a very popular with the rail fraternity and have a big following. A few years ago they regularly hauled a freight No. 4190 that ran from Sandgate to Botany daily. We were able to view it locally at Cowan where up to four C class would head into the Up Relief to await a passenger service to pass. The C's dropped down into low idle and this sound was what made them likeable. Luckily they headed towards Sydney around midday and after following them towards Sydney for a while then we headed home for lunch.

A few other things have been happening around the layout, a passenger platform has been built, so I will cover that in the next update.

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Diesel House (2)

 The diesel shed has been basically finished. It has been a composition of bits and pieces, a custom job to fit the space. The overall size is not large and will only fit around four smaller main line type locos such as the 44 class locomotives. There is not enough space to devote to a larger shed as this area has to also accommodate a turntable and storage around it.

The shed roof which was made from a station platform kit had to be cut down to size. The shed roof didn't have any ends with it so I fabricated ends using plain styrene and glued on some strip styrene as extra support. Evergreen angle came in handy to cover the edges from the roof to the ends. Originally the end of the kit was three tracks wide and had to be modified back to two tracks wide. It may not be a prototypical building but I think it looks the part, especially when everything around it gets completed.

Along each side at the bottom of the sides I glued a length of styrene, to give some rigidity and it also represented a concrete base to the building.

The whole building was sprayed with a grey paint which was needed to colour up the various pieces of white styrene inside the shed. Once that was done the building was given some weathering using Tamiya khaki drab diluted down with plenty of isopryl alcohol. It is better to make the first paint well diluted and then build up with later coats.

Two sections of fencing were painted white and glued outside the door entrances as a measure to prevent employees going directly onto the running track. Clearances are very tight at this spot.

So the basics of the shed are done, there is still some more enhancing such as some lights over the doorways and internal detailing. I am planning on building an elevated platform between the two roads inside the shed, another day.

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Diesel House

 Amongst the many projects there are to do is the need for a diesel loco shed. This will be situated on the left hand side of the room and sit mid way down in the loco area. Room for the shed is tight and it will sit against the main line track that is next to the passenger platform.

Location of diesel shed

Pictures of diesel sheds were hard to find, so the best compromise was to just freelance the shed to look like one. While trawling through Ebay one day I came across a shed that had potential. It was reasonably cheap and one of those items 'postage free' from China. (If only items from the states were as cheap!) The kit had the usual four walls, a flat roof and floor. There were sprues that fitted suitable equivalent holes to make it all rigid. In the end none of these were used.

As other things with the layout progressed the loco shed project was put aside. Then I got the package with the parts out again. There were no instructions or photos, just the parts in a plastic bag. I was fairly straight forward anyway. I did a dry run with the parts on the layout and quickly realised that what I had on hand would only make half a shed, so another kit was ordered and turned up some time later.

So when it was time to get serious the parts were taken out of their respective bags and one seemed smaller than the other. The penny quickly dropped and I realised either I was sent an N scale kit or I had ticked the wrong box when ordering. A period of many months had elapsed and although I could have re-ordered a second HO kit I felt that using the N scale one, some interesting mods would have to be made. The other issue was that the windows would be smaller, but side by side they seemed to work out Okay.

Ex station roof
The hunt was on for a suitable roof. Worse case scenario was to manufacture a flat roof which should have been easy to make. But a visit to the Forestville Model rail exhibition led me straight to the second hand section. Getting in there on a Saturday meant a slow trip into the narrow room to look for bargains. At times you couldn't even see the tables due to a wall of bodies doing the same bargain hunting. Way down the back of the room was where there was some sort of order and the 'other than locos and rolling stock' section was. As it was two hours in after opening I didn't expect to see much suitable but then I spotted some type of european station roofing complete with the supports. When you are into scratch building you have to quickly determine if you can do something with it. So with this item I could see that the roof looked a good possibility. The were skylights in the roof which would let light into the shed. Maybe this style wouldn't work in real life but I thought it would work for me. Can't complain, it only cost $10 for the station roof.

The shed is fairly small being 400m long and 125mm wide. This covered two tracks and will provide coverage for four locos around the size of 44, 45 etc style locos. It would not give coverage for two NR type locos completely on the same track. The design is mainly to give the appearance of infrastructure to house a few locos. I am not sure what will be provided inside the shed at this stage. To match the size of the shed I had to cut down the length and width of the platform roofing. It sorta came out OK. To fit the walls onto the roof section I glued an L angle evergreen strip along the base of the roof. This also formed a gutter and tidied up the edging and made it look a lot neater. This can be seen in the roof photo above. Naturally a second section had to be added as the sections out of the bag are not long enough.

Whoops N scale
The above photo shows how the N scale sections were infilled with HO scale corrugated section to match the height of the correct HO sections. I think it gives some variety to the shed. The kit for the shed was actually for three tracks wide but the front had to be modified in width to only cover two tracks. The other issue was that the doorways had to be enlarged to HO scale.

Loco shed in its selected place.

Something missing?
The above photos shows the basics of the shed. It just requires the back section added and some more detailing, painting, weathering etc. I'll show that on the next blog update.

Friday, February 10, 2023

Ready to go

 It has been a long time since the last post and things will finally get moving on the layout this year. It was possible last year to add some locomotives and rolling stock to the fleet.

This fleet expansion will mean that some extra sidings will have to be squeezed in somewhere and they will slightly encroach on the bedroom space. Even the space behind the door will be utilised as a siding to store some rolling stock, every spot counts. So when these extra sidings get constructed the track plan for the layout will be updated. Other than the extra sidings all the track is laid and just awaiting the ballast and structures to be done.

Among the extra items purchased for the layout was the Eureka model of 3801 and the HUB set to go with it. A sound Austrains 35 class as well as an Auscision sound 48 class. The big item that is being waited on is the Auscision C class which seem to be taking forever to get here. Why does it take so long after the pilot models arrive to the actual production models being available?

And pictured above  two very nice arrivals are the Auscision 44 class that arrived today. Two in the standard indian red were obtained.

The plan now is to build the extra sidings and then start on doing the scenery and structures etc. So keep viewing and it is hoped the blog updates will be more regular this year