Dublo 3 Rail Layout

Discussion in 'Members Personal Layouts' started by Wolseley, Nov 20, 2018.

  1. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    I think I'll have to come up with a name that is less location specific. When I'm running scale models, the locomotives will be ex Caledonian and Highland railway and the name would suit, as the Highland used the Caledonian's Strathmore line as far as Stanley Junction, from where the Highland main line branched off and headed north to Inverness. My original layout, which never got built, was to have been based on Luncarty, the station before Stanley Junction When I'm running my collection of mostly Hornby Dublo, the name would not be appropriate, even if you ignore such things as my Dorchester and Bristol Castle because for some reason I have ended up with a collection where Duchesses outnumber everything else (I haven't counted them lately, but I think I have over 14 of them) and Duchesses didn't go further north than Perth.

    I've always fancied the name Maybank for a layout. Yes, I know it was once used for a well known UK layout in the 1950s but, in my case, the name comes from it being the name of my paternal grandparents' house in Park Road, Brechin. My father's old bedroom was upstairs and, from the window, you got a good view of Brechin station yards. I recall, when I was there in 1975 for a few months, looking out the window and watching a class 08 shunter pottering around shunting trucks.....
     
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  2. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Here is where I'm up to at the moment. Most of the track has been cleaned and fixed down, and the wiring is about one third done. Needless to say, no trains are running at the moment other than a solitary 2-6-4T, which I am using to ensure everything is working as I fix it all down:

    P1010547R.jpg

    P1010548R.jpg

    I'm having second thoughts about the name of the layout, but that's something that I shouldn't have to worry about for some time yet, as my main aim atthe moment is to get things running again.....
     
  3. Gary

    Gary Wants more time for modelling.... Staff Member Administrator

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    The layout is certainly coming along now, looking good !

    Cheers, Gary.
     
  4. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    In case you're wondering why the Mr Sheen is on the table, I'm using it for cleaning the tinplate track base - it does a better job than anything else I can find. Given that it's tinplate, I don't want to use soapy water, or even a damp cloth. Windex does a good job too, but it occasionally removes some of the paint - I've only had it happen a few times (including once on a coach side), so maybe there was a period when Meccano were experimenting with different paint formulations.
     
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  5. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Things are moving slowly, but they are moving. All the track is permanently fixed down and most of the wiring, other than that to the signals and the electric points, is in place, although the underside of the board remains to be tidied up.

    I'm still undecided on the name for the layout. In the early stages I felt that Binns Road had a good railwaylike ring to it, as well as indicating the parentage of most of the stock, but it turned out (rather predictably) that this name has been used before, more than once, for other Hornby Dublo layouts. I thought then that Strathmore might be a good name (it was the name of a Caledonian and Highland layout I started building stock and buildings for in the 1980s, roughly based on Luncarty, but never got very far with and never built the actual layout) but the name was rather specific geographically and, with my growing collection of Duchesses, which didn't travel further north than Perth, it didn't seem quite appropriate. Then, today, I open up the latest issue of Railway Modeller only to find thePlan of the Month is a layout called Strathmore. I then considered a few family connections, in particular my grandfather, who lived in a house called Maybank in Park Road Brechin (from the upper windows of which you can see the yards of the Caledonian Railway station!) and I did at that stage favour Maybank, but it didn't seem to sound right. Park Road is currently the preferred option, but another name that suggested itself was Northfield, from the name of Northfield Cottage in Trinity Road, Brechin, residence of one of my grandfather's uncles....

    Anyway, enough of my ramblings. here's where the layout is up to:

    P1010592.jpg

    P1010594.jpg

    And the underside with the yet to be tidied up wiring:

    P1010593.jpg
     
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  6. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Latest additions to the locomotive stud are three non-Dublo items, a Trix Flying Scotsman (a later DC one, not the AC one with the steamroller wheels) a Trix A H Peppercorn, and an early 1950s KMR LMS 2P 4-4-0. All have to be converted to three rail - the Trix Pacifics were from Trix's later two rail period and the KMR 2P, while originally a three rail model, has been converted to two rail.

    In case you're wondering what on earth a KMR loco is, they were cast metal kits from the late 1940s/early 1950s. Here's a couple of illustrations from Ernest F Carter's Model Railway Encyclopaedia:

    KMR 1.jpg

    KMR 2.jpg
     
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  7. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    I had no idea that it would take me so long to wire the layout, and this is stretching my understanding of electrics to its limits. Most of the wiring is done now, including 18 signals and 10 points (all the points not in easy reach are electrically operated) and 2 TPOs. I still have the electric uncoupling ramps (7 of them) and the isolating rails as well as tidying up the wiring to do.

    With all this, I haven't had time to do much else, although I have made a start on repainting a Dublo A4 in BR blue.
     
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  8. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    I have now finished wiring my layout, although the wires still have to be tidied up and signals fixed down. There is much work still to do, but at least I can now run trains. Scenic treatment is still to come, but that will be the last thing I tackle. Here's where it's up to now:

    P1010595.jpg

    P1010596.jpg

    P1010597.jpg
     
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  9. ianvolvo46

    ianvolvo46 Staff Member Moderator

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    Well done that man you've made a superb job of it have a tinto :cheers:

    Ian vt
     
  10. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Now that I know that it all works, I'm tidying up the under-baseboard wiring - getting some order......

    P1010598.jpg

    ..... into the chaos:

    P1010599.jpg
     
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  11. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    The bottom one looks familiar! :lol:
     
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  12. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Getting there:

    P1010601.JPG

    P1010602.JPG
     
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  13. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    Unless you use something like slotted panel wiring trunking, much of under the layout wiring is going to resemble an explosion in a spaghetti factory! It's difficult to keep things tidy, especially if (like me) you later extend the layout, 3 times in my case. All you can do realistically is try to keep some semblance of order, but the more points, signals and other electronics, the harder it becomes. I try not to look at the underside of my layout too often!:avatar::avatar::avatar:

    Keith.
     
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  14. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    mill maybe get a photo of mine...

    although I must stress, it wasn’t wired by me as I inherited the board and added to it... but all I can say is, My Uncle Jack must have had a lot of green wire to use up! :facepalm:
     
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  15. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    I lost a day or two's modelling time after I pushed a lever to change a point and nothing happened. The trains ran around the layout on both lines, but the points, signals and uncoupling ramps worked only on the two end boards but not the middle one. As I had recently changed the electrical connections between the three boards, I thought that must have been the source of the problem so, after checking a few other things, I went over everything at the baseboard joins and it made no difference. I eventually found the cause after tracing all the wiring of the accessories around the centre board (a job made a good deal easier by my having colour coded all the wiring). It turned out that a wire had become detached from a tag strip at a less than perfect soldered joint - it wasn't easy to spot at first, as the errant wire was held in place by the other wires around it and wasn't hanging loose.

    So that I could see things a bit better when I was looking for the source of the problem, I separated the boards from each other and sat them on their ends. Now I know that the layout can be taken apart and reassembled and will still work, although I have to be careful when fitting the boards together, as not all the track pieces end exactly on the line of the baseboard joins.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2020
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  16. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    Time for an update. I have made a start on the scenery in one part of the layout. As it is a few decades since I last did any scenic modelling, I am finding two things: firstly, a lot has changed since the last time I did this and, secondly partly because of new ideas since I last did this and partly simply because it has been so long, it's almost like having to learn everything for the first time.

    So here's the corner I've been working on:

    Progress 1.jpg
     
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  17. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    A bit more has now been done:

    Progress 2.jpg
     
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  18. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    I feel like I'm going backwards - I thought I had almost finished the station forecourt, aside from a bit of detailing and the addition of fences. Then I noticed that one of the bits of cobblestone paving (Metcalfe) was a slightly different colour from the rest, as if the ink used to print it had come out of another batch. All the sheets bar one were a grey with a hint of brown, but the odd one out was slightly blue. It wasn't too noticeable in daylight, but it stood out in artificial light. The more I looked at it, the more it bothered me, so I removed the offending piece of paving and replaced it with another. Obviously Metcalfe's quality control leaves a bit to be desired.

    All this made me look closer at the finish and, in spite of my best efforts to hide them, the joins between the pieces were still visible. I spent the best part of the evening trying to improve the finish but, no matter what I did, they still looked like beautifully smooth printed rectangles of cardboard joined together rather than a cobbled station forecourt. I eventually gave up and ordered a Noch gravel mat instead, which I'll cut to shape and glue on top of the cardboard......
     
  19. Echidna

    Echidna Full Member

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    Hello All,

    actually, bluish coloured concrete is not unusual, when bluestone gravel is used in newly poured concrete a bluish tinge is the result, though it generally fades after some years. It is normally not noticed due to concrete usually having the same mix when a concrete path or slab is poured. It is only noticed when two adjacent pours consist of different colour blends.

    I would be inclined to leave the existing Metcalf paving, and try a small wash of a darker mid grey to add some contrast and highlight the grooves. Just try a small section first, and see how it comes up.If ok, do it batches, and slightly vary the infill colour to break up the sameness of colour.

    The photos above look quite good,

    Best wishes, Echidna
     
  20. Wolseley

    Wolseley Full Member

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    This was not a variation that was built into the product to represent the variation that you get in a natural material such as bluestone, it was one sheet in a batch that was otherwise in a greyish hue with brownish overtones having a colour that was a different overall shade that was bluish when viewed in artificial light. Nothing intentional about it - it was just poor quality control. Admittedly the finish didn't look too bad when viewed from a low level but, when viewed from above which is, after all, how most of us see our lyouts, the defects became unacceptably apparent. In retrospect, I should have used something else in the first place. Cardboard is good for representing some surfaces, but not a surface like cobblestone paving.

    Yes, I did try a wash of mid grey, and it worked at first on a small section, but then I found that the sheets took the colour unevenly and it ended up looking worse than when it started. I decided against trying anything further and gave it up as a lost cause. Today a package arrived (I would normally get a bus or train and visit a hobby shop, but these are no normal times) containing a grey Noch gravel mat and some Ratio fencing - so the forecourt will now have a different finish. I should make a start on it again tomorrow.
     
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