Elton Crossing - A small bit of the NSRly Wheelock branch in 7mm

Discussion in 'Members Personal Layouts' started by York Paul, Jul 25, 2018.

  1. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    I wondered if members may like to see my short layout named Elton Crossing which was a real place located in South Cheshire and was part of the North Staffordshire Railway's branch from Alsager to Sandbach and bye-passing Crewe. The branch lost it's passenger service in 1932 and for many years served the Brunner Mond brine and chemical works at Malkins Bank and also the ERF Foden lorry plant at Ettilee Heath, the single line left the Kidsgrove - Crewe line at Lawton Junction half a mile south of Alsager station and passed through the village of Lawton, Hassall Green and Wheelock before rejoining the LNWR Manchester main line at Sandbach Goods Junction. Elton Crossing was located at the top of the branch adjacent Fodens Works and was closed in 1971. The signal box at Elton is preserved on the Churnet Valley Railway at Cheddleton and the signal box at Hassall Green is now rebuilt in the Wirrel Country Park at Hadlow Road. My layout pictures have been seen in different threads before but I felt it time to have a layout thread as well to show developments, there is a lot of work remaining such as wiring and lighting the signals, completing the crossing house build and lane, installing the factory backdrop and finishing the Co-Operative Coal Merchants Yard with coal porters shed.






     
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  2. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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  3. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Last edited: Jul 26, 2018
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  4. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    And finally to show just how inclusive I am a modeler here is a GWR brake van marked up as a Saltney allocation, it must have worked its way up over the Market Drayton line and onto the Stoke line via Newcastle Junction as the veranda is facing towards Kidsgrove.

     
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  5. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Great pictures there York Paul. The house build looks quite something. The scenics don't half help fill the layout as well. Very well done. I like the corrugated iron makeshift fencing as well. Keep it coming.

    Cheers

    Toto
     
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  6. Chatty

    Chatty Full Member

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    Your work has left me truly inspired Paul.
     
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  7. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks Toto, the house when finished will be the crossing keepers cottage, it's made from Plasticard and that's the place where the woman who looked quite frightening lived, we were talking about making scalloped roof tiles on a profiling cutter the other week also. The signal box didn't control the crossing gates as it was more than 30 feet away and was primarily a points box and token station to Hassall Green. In later years the gate keeper post was withdrawn and the box became a fringe box to Sandbach under the electrification scheme and the signalman did then have to open the gates, by this time of course traffic levels had dropped and the mainstay was block oil train workings to Middlewich.
     
  8. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks Chatty, there is a long way to go yet as so much is still incomplete, sadly a design fault makes this layout unable to be shown publically but folk will be welcome to view by appointment once its finished. But that will be for another time.
     
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  9. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    Excellent modelling Paul :tophat::tophat::tophat::tophat:
    I for one will take up your offer to a visit once you're ready.

    Cheer's, Pete.
     
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  10. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Definitely Pete, where I'm at right now with outstanding work is wiring up servos to signals and megapoints control board, signal lighting, finish crossing house, finish scenery, finish pole route adding copper wires, motor up the gates and build backdrops and lighting. I was planning on getting this done over the winter or back end months. You are most welcome to visit and I can accommodate overnight stay if you want to break your journey up and take more time out. :thumbs: You'll like the pub in the village also... proper English beers too.:cheers:
     
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  11. Timbersurf

    Timbersurf

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    O Gauge ain't my bag, but it don't stop me appreciating the detail and I wouldn't say no if you handed me the controller! :avatar:
    Looks fantastic so far. Do tell us more about the gates, backscene and lighting (now we are talking my bag!)
     
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  12. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks Timbersurf for you kind comments. Now to answering your request the gates are 3D printed by Shapeways... look for Northern Bridge 3D Models by Andy Sollis. Andy prints mainly North Staffordshire Railway architecture in N, OO and O Gauges, he also does some Leek & Manifold Valley narrow gauge stuff as well. The gates you can see are an NSR 12' 6" pattern which Andy and I measured some years ago, he also does a 13' 6" wide pattern for wheel worked gates which are a bit thicker in size, there were no suitable proprietary makes available so it became a case of do it yourself. I intent so motor the gates up with servos controlled by a Megapoints Controller driver board through a pair of levers in a frame.

    The backdrop is the old lorry factory of Fodens, this will run the length of the siding you see filled with coal wagons and be made from 6mm MDF sheet, the factory was a tall single storey brick structure with rectangular Art Deco metal windows and a slate roof, I've yet to make it but it will be about five feet in length and backlit. For lighting I've fitted nano LEDs supplied by DCC Concepts of Settle, the crossing gates have red nano LEDs, the signal box has yellow ones and the rest are fitted inside the various huts and crossing house are / will be warm white.
     
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  13. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Lots of work on the lane surface and fencing still to do, the picket fence just positioned with blue tack to see how it will look. Lamps lit on the crossing gates, some light bleed though occurring on the printed plastic lamp cases, I'll have to blank it out with a stronger type paint, also the lamps are showing a bit too bright so that will need toning down by adding higher value resistors.


     
  14. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Still looks ok though

    Toto
     
  15. Timbersurf

    Timbersurf

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    I too have megapoints for my servo driven points, I am not sure how you can change the speed for the gates? Do you intend to use the signal bounce function for the gates?
    I have developed a program with an Arduino to drive level crossing barriers and will use another similar to drive my gates. You will have to test the megapoints controller and see if it works to your satisfaction, if not, we can discus the Arduinio option further.
    The "night" shots look great, having lit stop lamps is cool (maybe beyond my capabilities in OO). I did wonder were you would get 7mm gates? 3D was the goto answer (I have seen some 3D printed in OO but they are naff). I will add Andy'ssite to my Links page! (and Toto's cobble roller supplier).
    5 foot long building! :eek: Another reason I don't do 7mm! :avatar:
     
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  16. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Hi Timbersurf, thank you for the kind offer of advice and discussion I appreciate that and will definitely take you up there. Sorry I cannot chat now as I've got quite a busy day starting in about half an hour but will catch you on the forum tonight. You can find Andy on Facebook... look for Andrew Sollis ... he lives in Trowel Notts tell him Paul from Yorkhas sent you in his direction, I think you may find his stuff to your satisfaction bearing in mind printed plastic is frosted for economy.
     
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  17. Timbersurf

    Timbersurf

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    Yep, we can pick this up tonight. There is no shortage of suppliers for OO gates, I had already considered lights, and think I would be ok with fitting them, I have become a dab hand at fitting SMD LED's and hidden micro wires (see the buffers that are the first picture on my website), the issue is getting power to the moving gate! I assume you use flex wire, but it would be much harder to disguise/hide at 4mm/ft. I might have to have a look at running wires through a brass tube which is also the pivot shaft?
    I have just had an awesome idea! (for O or OO), how about working engine jacks? That would go down a storm on an exhibition layout! I can't say I have ever seen them before!
    Perhaps one to be incorporated in your future exhibition plans! (like my 4 post lift! Does anyone do a brass kit in O gauge?
     
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  18. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    I've taken a few close up lineside pictures of the Elton Crossing layout hopefully offering a few ideas for modellers, I'm not sure if this is what Toto is looking for by way of ideas for his own build Luib Bridge but anyway here goes.

    A scratch built ballast bin made from ABS plastic by C&L Finescale, to make this item 12 sleepers were used. Note also the scale distance from sleeper ends to the batter slope, this part of the formation is called the cess edge or six foot in railway parlance. The railroad is ballasted using 4mm scale fine granite chippings from Jarvis as this is a running line.


    Now on the other side of the layout is the Foden Siding, this railroad is not a running line instead it's a long siding, in this instance the formation ballast is just plain ash spoil and we can see the difference in ground heights from the base of the batter to sleeper ends. Here some redundant sleepers have been piled together, some in the cess and some strung up the batter side.


    Here is another view of the running line, the cess is covered with fine ash granular particles using the Jarvis N scale range, also again note how the grassy batter slope covering does not continuously come down to the cess edge but instead the grass has a slight overhang onto the cess. This is how the real railway used to be so a true to life model should follow something similar.


    Now on the
     
  19. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Now for a bit more lineside furniture visuals this time the signals... please bare in mind I've still a heap of work to do here so by no means is this bit the final article. The ground dolly reading off with the crossover reversed.


    And the same ground dolly back on with point normal.

     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
  20. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Now lets look at how vegetation and weeds encroach onto tracks when the maintenance is reduced or the track is falling out of regular use. here the Co-op Siding (which was a coal unloading point) has started to become lost in nature. I made various weed clumps using my static grass applicator, a drop of wet PVA glue onto grease proof paper will do the trick and save pounds as well. The clumps are accumulating in between the sleeper cribs and have started to engulf the rails. The rail on this bit of siding is cut down Peco rail mounted onto C&L sleepers with Slaters Midland pattern treenail chairs.


    Now the milepost is starting to become lost under encroaching weeds also, this is a North Staffordshire Railway pattern half mile mounted at 45 degrees onto a wooden post, this item is 3D printed by Northern Bridge Models.

     
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