Maron Station & Engine Shed

Discussion in 'Members Personal Layouts' started by AJS is a Red, Oct 11, 2019.

  1. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Starting from a humble beginning: a Thomas the Tank Engine Hornby train set on a baseboard, given as a gift to my children. The layout is now progressing to more of a beginners model railway. Loosely based on Maron station from the Thomas the Tank Engine books & TV series, the layout incorporates a station with Signal box, Engine shed & small goods depot.

    My 5 year old son loves trains & Thomas the Tank Engine so I wanted to make the layout fun for children, but also a place to show off my beautiful A4, Sir Nigel Gresley (my personal favourite loco).
     

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  2. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    The first stages of Maron Station becoming more than a train set..... Some scenery in place. I scratch built a road bridge using brick paper downloaded from the internet stuck onto 2mm card, finished with a coat of PVA & Matt varnish to give the structure some strength.
     

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  3. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Maron Station building started out life as an old, unassembled Hornby kit I bought off eBay for a few pounds. I painted it to resemble the station building from the TV series I found on the internet, with some station signs I knocked up in Powerpoint and downloads of some old railway posters, I don't think it looks too bad. Needs some weathering now to finish it off, does anyone have any tips for weathering buildings and what are the best materials to use (paint or weathering powders)?.
     

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  4. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    Personally I would give the whole station a very light wash with watered down black mixed with brown and light grey and a little washing up liquid to break down the surface tension to stop the watery paint balling. Try it on a spot that is not easily seen before committing to the rest. Once it is dry then put a few streaks down the sides of the window cills etc.
    Don't splash it on to much or the posters may peel off. Mind you, you could give it a coat of clear matt lacquer first to seal everything.


    Cheer's, Pete.
     
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  5. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Thanks Pete.

    I'll give it a go.
     
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  6. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    The original layout looked too flat, so I Created some landscaped hills to create some more interest. As you can see, I'm keeping this in the family. My Son, Harry getting stuck in to some paper mâché hills - we were inspired to crack on with some more modelling following a recent visit to the Gloucester Warwickshire preserved railway.
     

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  7. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Some more progress on the layout this week. Platforms glued down, more landscaping in place - I'm going to have my first attempt at modelling water. Just a small pond with a few local anglers trying their luck. I found a good video from Kathy Millatt of The Great Model Railway Challenge TV series fame, where she uses clear PVA to create a realistic water feature. I'm going to try this first before spending money on specialist resins.

    In the meantime, some more photos on progress.....

    Andrew.
     

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  8. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Some progress has been made on layout scenics over the past few weeks.... Firstly, paper mâché surfaces painted brown, ready for adding the grass scatter. I have also painted the small lake before applying PVA to create the water.
     

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  9. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    With the scenic areas painted, I then ploughed on with applying the scenic scatter. I used 2 shades of grass scatter from a company called Green Scene, which I bought at the Great Electric Model Railway show at Gaydon a few back. I also used some coarse Woodland Scenics scatter. For the embankment next to the Engine shed, I also applied some coal scatter I created by breaking up a lump of coal I use in our fuel burning stove..... In the past un-used or no good coal would have been discarded near engine sheds. I also used moss from the Garden to represent shrubs / bushes (pre-baked in the oven to kill off any bacteria / small bugs).
     

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  10. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    For the farmer's field cameo in one of the corners of the layout, I glued sieved soil from the Garden to the painted scenic surface before applying grass scatter. Vehicle tracks were created by pushing an old 1:76 scale van through the soil before the PVA had dried. I then applied a coat of PVA on top of the vehicle tracks to make it look like wet mud. The photo shows the scene with scatter applied and a scratch built animal shelter. Animals and a Series 1 Land Rover will be added at a later date to complete the scene.
     

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  11. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    I had been thinking about adding some hedge rows to the scenery and came across one of Gormo's brilliant video tutorials.... I then set about hacking up some of the cleaning sponge scourers from kitchen sink cupboard, I was sure to leave 1 scourer so that we can still do the dishes! The sponges have been painted a dark green, using mixes of my children's poster paints. These have been glued in place on the layout, the next step is to glue some coarse scatter onto the sponge substrate.

    Due to us saving for a family holiday to Florida next Easter, cash is tight, some I'm trying to be creative with my scenery. Apart from the grass scatter I bought from a show a few years back, my aim is for the rest of the landscape to be created by materials I already have around me. I'll show the results in later posts.
     

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  12. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Hi all, some help required please....

    Still making progress on my layout, most of the scenery is done - I'll post up some photos at a later date. I will be making a start on ballasting next, but before I do, I wanted to make sure all is well electrically with the track...... Here's where I've uncovered an issue I could do with some advice on:

    The layout is DC operated, with a standard Hornby controller you get with most of their DC train sets. I have been given a really good Gaugemaster D series controller free of charge by a friend who has given up on his railway modelling. I would like to connect this up instead of the Hornby controller as it offers better speed control and has an accessory port so I can connect lighting and point control, which I plan to do later. I have tested the controller and it works fine when I connect it to the Hornby power feed, which is integrated into a straight piece of track. I basically stripped the insulation on a couple of bits of wire and pushed them into the location holes in the Hornby power feed. All good then so far...

    Next I soldered to wires to another section of track for the live and return feeds (I wanted to leave the Hornby connector in place, in case I need to go back to the original controller) and connected them to the Gaugemaster controller and that's when things have gone wrong. When I tested a loco (same one I tested that ran fine when I checked the Gaugemaster in the Hornby track feed) it worked okay going forwards, although it made quite a loud screeching sound at higher speeds, but in reverse it ran really slow and kept causing a short circuit every time I get to a set of points or a rail join. I checked that I had the correct wire going to the controller and I tested the loco previously as I mentioned and it worked fine, so I m at a loss. I also tested the controller again by pushing the feed wires into the Hornby power track - worked perfectly. As I'm inexperienced when it comes to all of the wiring and electrical elements of railway modelling, I'm after some advice on next steps.

    I could just plug the Hornby controller back in and that would work, but I want the ability to add lighting etc, which the Gaugemaster controller allows.

    Here is a diagram of my layout, apologies, it is a powerpoint creation as I don't have any track layout software. I have shown the point where I tried to connect the Gaugemaster controller and the location of the Hornby power track is shown:


    The only thing I can think of is that the Gaugemaster controller won't work with the Hornby power track section in place, maybe because of the blue component in the picture below, not sure if it's a capacitor, but it is connected between the 2 rail pick ups, seen in the image below:


    I tried to get the answer by searching on Google, but could not find out what this component is for and if it is removed would it allow the Gaugemaster to be installed at another point on the layout (for example in the attempted position in my track diagram above?

    I'm probably being an idiot and the answer is obvious, but as I said I'm a bit of a novice, so any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks

    Andrew.
     
  13. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    Do you have a soldering iron?

    If so, swap that bit of track out and solder direct to the track. The blue bit looks like a suppressor of some kind? I’ve never seen one on a power feed?

    you can then connect any controller and soldered should give you a much better connection than the power clip.

    andy
     
  14. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Hi Andy.

    Yes I do have a soldering iron, I've used it to add some droppers to the track (protecting for future DCC conversion, when finances allow). I'll give it ago. I wonder if it is a suppressor and the Gaugemaster controller doesn't like it for some reason. I'll try doing some more research.

    I've seen a track plan on Brian Lambert's website that is similar to my layout. He suggests having 2 power feeds, before both curved points. Do you think that would work okay?

    Thanks, Andrew.
     
  15. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    So, some research has confirmed that the blue component in my image is indeed a suppressor, nice one Andy. These are fitted on DC Hornby train sets to limit TV or radio interference from the locos - the rails act as an antenna. They're not fitted to DCC as it can interfere with decoders.

    The question is, do I need it on the layout and would it explain why the Gaugemaster controller won't work when I connected it to a different piece of track with soldered droppers?

    Thanks

    Andrew.
     
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  16. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

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    Unless there is something magical in that suppressor, no, as most locos are fitted with them. There is still some discussion if you should or not remove them when fitting DCC to be fair.
    I don’t realistically see why it should cause an issue to the Gaugemaster?

    as I said, swap it out, and see if the GM unit works then? Or if you have spare track, just try the GM unit on there and see if you loco works so you can rule out the GaugeMaster unit being at fault.
     
  17. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Thanks for your help Andy :thumbup:.

    I swapped out the power straight with a standard piece of track. The Gaugemaster works fine when I connect it to the same droppers I had trouble with previously. So it seems that the suppressor was causing issues with the Gaugemaster controller. Works a treat now, I also added a 2nd set of power feeds on the opposite side of the layout and the trains run beautifully. Happy days :cheers:.

    I've now applied an earth colour to the sleepers for the 1st phase of weathering, onto ballasting next. I'll post up some pictures when the ballasting is done.

    Thanks again.

    Andrew.
     
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  18. ianvolvo46

    ianvolvo46 Staff Member Moderator

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    You're making good progress Andrew good for you :thumbup:

    Ian vt
     
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  19. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Thanks Ian.

    I'll be starting the ballasting today so will post up some photos on progress.

    Andrew
     
  20. AJS is a Red

    AJS is a Red Full Member

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    Hi all.

    Ballasting underway at Moron Station, the platform area was completed at the weekend:


    Ballast applied using the usual technique of 50% PVA, 50% water and a dash of washing up liquid to break the surface tension. I added a wash of grey and a little black acrylic paint.


    Weathering will be done when the whole layout has been ballasted.

    Andrew.
     
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