Monthly Archives: September 2014

Peter Bond’s Aultbea

I can’t claim any of the credit for this one, it is the work of one of my friends and stalwart operators of Portchullin, Peter Bond.

His latest layout (in EM) is based on the line that was proposed from Achnasheen to Gairloch and Aultbea.  This was a real proposal in the late 19th century but the scheme came to nothing.  Peter has imagined that not only was it built but it thrived; to a large degree due to the naval connection where the navy did use Gairloch as a significant port.  He has also presumed that Aultbea became the port for the Hebrides and thus the Kyle line faded away (a point I don’t like!).

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You can see in this view the rather nice model of the signal cabin for Aultbea, based on that at Kyle.  The description of the building of this was in BRM in September and October 2012 and is worth a read.

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The layout is pretty big; some 30 feet long and relatively deep at the station end.  Peter envisaged that with the rise in traffic during the first war, the station had to be enlarged – much like Oban was when the Ballachulish line was built.  Indeed, Peter is taking a lot of his inspiration from Oban, including portions of the trackplan, the overall roof and the engine shed being a little detached from the rest of the station.  As you can see, it will be set in the late 1960’s so a little earlier than Portchullin.

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Now Peter is an inveterate starter of layouts, so by posting these progress pictures, I am hoping to prod him along to finishing this one.

Over to you Pete!

 

 

 

 

First Four Boards Complete!

Julian and I have been putting a bit more time in on the baseboards, to the point where the first four are complete with the exception of their varnishing/painting.

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You will also see in the pictures that the beams that support the boards have also been completed.  These span between the brackets that were shown here which in turn are supported by bolts that have been affixed to the builders trestles.  This means that each point of contact can be adjusted for both overall level and also cant.  The idea is that this is done prior to placing the boards on the beams, so that the whole thing can be levelled as one and the boards then just get plonked on.  So long as the floor is not too wonky (like that in Tim & Julian’s place!), this does not take long and it is very idiot-proof assembling the layout perfectly each time.

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Also visible in the views are the gallows brackets that will support the lighting and facia.  These are fairly meaty as they have to span over 1300mm from front to back, so the moment on them is quite high.  What we have just found is that they are a tad low due to the beans being a bit higher than I had expected.  A bit of adjustment will be required in due course; especially as the layout level is also a bit high.

But the acid test of the new boards is shown in this view.  On Portchullin one of the problems is that the boards rise up slightly at the joints – a problem I see a lot on layouts.  This is dead flat; so we won’t see the trains doing any Casey Jones runs over the mountain ranges!

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The next visit will get on with the last two boards, which will take up the rather obvious space where Julian is working.  These will only be a single width in size as the boards are tapering in to 700mm wide at the end on the left in the view below.  To give a sense of scale, the yellow spirit level is 1200mm and the dark one 750mm.  (see Mr Ullyot – two spirit levels now………..)

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So thanks again to Tim & Julian and if any of readers are looking at electric loft ladders; give them a call.  S&T Joinery.

 

 

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