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Cutting and Shutting

I wished to use builder’s trestles for the supports for Glenmutchkin as they fold down, are very sturdy and durable (and are fairly cheap).  But, I also wished to go for a fairly full depth on the layout and they only come in the one depth (about 26 inches).  This meant I needed to cut and shut them, to make them into a stretch trestle.

Fortunately, my father in law was over at the weekend, and he has had 40 years in the motor trade so could tell us a thing or two about how to cut and shut (sorry Bernard!).   So, coupled with my brother and his welder, we have managed to cut and shut the first three trestles (the others do not need the same treatment).

Here is my brother James hard at work on the smaller of the three.

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I need to sort out a better means of storing Portchullin’s lighting pelmets.  One of the lessons I have learnt from Portchullin is that it has too many odd shapes and insufficient thought on how it should be stored/transported.

 

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Cutting the first Sod

Tomorrow should be a big day for Glenmutchkin, because if my brother remembers we will be cutting the first sod of the layout building.

Now all good railway lines start with a ceremonial cutting of the first sod by the Duchess of something or other; typically with a nice silver spade and after which everybody retires to the local hostelry for a fine dinner…………….whilst the navvies start the really hard work.  Well we probably will only be different by dropping the silver spade.

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More seriously, as long as he does not get blown away in the forecast storms, my brother will be bringing his welding kit over with him, so we can make a start on the big chunky bits.

Welding kit……………on a model railway; am I going crazy?   You’ll have to come back to find out!

Been Quiet – Sorry!

Whilst I have been quiet with regard to postings, I have been both modelling and doing other things.  I just have not really had the camera out much!

One of the “other things” I have been doing was exhibiting Portchullin at Wigan.  The layout threw its only real spanner at us on the first morning where we found that one of the Fulgerex’s had sent one of its electrical contacts into orbit (it has happened before) and thus would not operate.  A little bit of cussing and work below the board managed to get it to manually change to the loop and we thus did without the front siding all weekend.

I did not manage to get any pictures myself but “Black & Decker Boy” did take a rather good video:

This compliments the other really good video of the layout taken by “Highlandman” at Epsom a couple of years back:

Glenmutchkin Part 5: Signalling

Whilst they are not without their frustrations (they are delicate for example), I was slightly surprised to have enjoyed building and using the signals as much as I did.   Therefore, Glenmutchkins will going a bit more large on signals.

I am assisted in that the Highland seemed to follow the trend of the pre-group companies and be fairly lavish with their signals.  Taking significant cues from my sources of inspiration, Wick and Kyle of Lochalsh, this is where I have got to with a signalling plan.

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As can be seen, there is a fair amount to this as I have assumed that there is a junction off scene that is signalled from the station cabin (although this is still under review) and not only is the yard signalled onto the running line but both the run around loops and the shed are both signalled.   It looks like this will be a 45 lever frame, so there is a fair amount to do……………

A particular signal to note is the one with arms 17,18 & 19 on it.  This is a repeater for arms 15 & 16 so directs locos coming off the yard where they are to go to.  This exact same situation existed at Kyle and in addition to being a surprising duplication between the two signals the former is that the signal is situated well up on the bank and faces fairly firmly towards the shed, not the running lines.  I do not presently have a photograph that is free of copyright to illustrate this but there are lots in the various text books; try The Highland in LMS Days or LMS Engine Sheds.

Portchullin’s Next Outing

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My existing layout, Portchullin – as shown above in Andy York’s photo, has its next outing this Saturday (16th Feb) at Tonbridge. Details of the exhibition are here

After this, it will be a month’s rest and then we are out at the London Festival of Model Railways at Alexandra Palace. This is on the 23 and 24th of March and Details can be found here

After this, it will be Wigan in June an unconfirmed invite for Hartlepool in July and then Warley way off in November.

Glenmutchkin: Part 1 – Have summer house, will build……..

Much of 2012’s modelling time was devoted to the building or a summer house; at least that is what we told the planning authority it was.

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In reality, it was a better storage home for Portchullin that formerly had to be carted up two flights of stairs to the loft to live and also somewhere to get some of my “railway stuff” out of the house.  At least the domestic authorities knew that it would provoke me into scheming my next layout……..

I used to spend literally hours scheming up layout plans; is it not as much fun as actually making them?  But I have never had this much room – a heady 16 feet for the scenic section and, as I have arranged the summer house to have a set of doors at one end, the fiddle yard can be erected for operating sessions through the door so can be in addition to this dimension.  After much playing, this is what I have come up:

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There is a lot of working up still to do on this, but it shows the basic concept that I’ll be working too.  I’ll explain more as to its concept another day, but it draws its inspiration from a couple of the Highland’s termini so hopefully you can see a little of some fairly well known stations in the plans.

Roger Farnworth

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