Friday, 23 May 2008

Track laid!

Finally I have laid the rest of the track! So what, you might think, nearly 9 months after starting this layout I have laid some track. Well for various reasons it seemed better to have the major buildings defined first, and anyway finding the time to do noisy jobs like cutting track without waking the baby isn't easy!

The first picture shows the fiddle-yard entry track. This was laid from the station entry point, accross the board joint and the "cassette terminal" in one piece. Strategic placement of copper-clad strip between the sleepers stuck down with Bostick (some track pins may follow) should keep things solid. Once everything is stuck and soldered in place I cut the rails at the board and cassette joins with a slitting disc in a mini drill. I'll explain the cassette fiddle yard another time but it is the same design I used on Pen-Y-Bryn Quarry.

The rest of the track was stuck down onto a layer of PVA glue, with track pins to hold it where required (later removed). "N"-gauge granite ballast was sprinkled on to give an initial covering, later further ballast was added to the sleeper tops and diluted PVA dripped on with a pipette in the usual way. Actually it's the first time I've ballasted this way, most of my layouts have featured the track buried in ash/mud etc. rather than ballast!

After vacuuming off the excess and picking any ballast away from the rails, points, sleeper tops etc, the result is below. One point had stopped working - to my horror - but it turned out the spring had popped out of the slot in the tie-bar, with a bit of work I got it back together.

The ballast and rails will need painting, not sure how to tackle that yet, but first I need to install point motors and start wiring. I'd best make sure it all works before going any further!

This last picture shows the wrinkles in the backscene around the corners, fortunately I think I will be able to hide them behind buildings.

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Anonymous said...

Now I really like that. As to the wrinkles, you might try using postal tube cut into 4 and "feathered" in. I'm building "Drackenburg" for November 29th this year and its a technique I'm going to use in the corners.

You give encouragement to us all.

Michael Campbell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Campbell said...

Thanks for your comments Mike, and for that suggestion - a good idea but a bit late now! My sky has corners of about 4 inch radius, and it wasn't so much lack of support that has caused the wrinkles (though it hasn't helped) but bending the thin sky-paper to fit and sticking it with wallpaper paste. The lining paper behind it didn't wrinkle.

Previously my Mum painted backscenes for me (she is good at Welsh mountains) in oils on canvas - which would easily bend around without wrinkles. It can even be removed and rolled up! But I'm after a more urban scene here so that didn't seem suitable.

I'm interested in your layout - what is the 29th November deadline for?

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to seeing the fiddle yard design.´, and the urban scene...