7mm Birmingham Moor Street

Discussion in 'Layout Progress' started by Focalplane, 9 April 2019.

  1. Deano747

    Deano747 Western Thunderer

    Paul, you can always try Hobbyking where I get much of my R/C goods from. UK store and others in Europe.
    .....and other sizes available.
    Usual disclaimer- happy customer

    Regards, Deano.
  2. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    Well, Deano, the item appears to come from the same source! And Simon points out that there is a better alternative, see his photo above for a 12" to the foot automobile! As yoiu will see in the next post, I have obtained the grommets and rigged up a rubber connection between motor and deck.

    Thanks, Paul
    Deano747 likes this.
  3. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    Edit to revise post:

    The machined pillar:


    The two pillar in socket connections:


    The screw thread will be much shorter (how short is going to be difficult to determine). Exactly how I line up everything is going to be a challenge!
    Last edited: 16 October 2019
    Andy P, Keith Phillips and Deano747 like this.
  4. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    The new bottle of Copydex arrived at lunchtime so a start has been made on the new off scene storage loops. Tower say the new track should arrive by the end of the week so if I lay the existing track I lifted I should be able to lay the new track before next week. Between track laying jobs I continue to add platform edge slabs while waiting for Slaters’ order to arrive.

    Edit to add:

    The outer circuit (UP main loop) is back in commission and running better than before. The UP secondary loop can now be completed before the new track arrives; both points will form the DOWN loops which are now out of commission.
    Last edited: 16 October 2019
    Deano747 likes this.
  5. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    Tower's order arrived this morning, well before the "end of the week" and one point has been modified and laid while the other has been modified and is soon to be glued in place. Track for the extra loop (once 3, soon to be 4) can then be fitted. There will be plenty of flexible track left over to create more sidings on the scenic area.

    I am considering removing the turntable and replacing it with a simple cassette-at-end-of-siding arrangement in the off scene area to lift and turn tender locomotives. Now I will have two loops in each direction I can run my tender engines (eventually 2 Castles but also mixed traffic 43XX and Hall) as UP and DOWN motive power which means the turntable could be dispensed with. The turntable area could then mimic Bordesley Yard which fed into the Goods Station. The two short carriage sidings can also be lengthened at the same time. This will all happen after the present trackwork is finished and after the traversers are up and running.

    Like many late steam era modellers I await the release of the Dapol Mark 1 coaches for a second Western Region express rake. However, I do have a number of Period III LMS coaches under construction and these could act as a visiting rake during the early West Coast Main Line electrification disruptions. Either way I will need more storage, hence the lower priority for the turntable.

    Back to the track laying. . . . Photos later.
    Deano747 likes this.
  6. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    The four storage loops are in but not all the wiring has been connected. And the point motors are installed but only one is wired up and working. Nonetheless, a good day's work because I also attacked the turntable area. The turntable is staying in place but the engine roads are now on one side only so that more sidings can accommodate anticipated stock purchases.

    Here are some quick snaps to show the progress and concepts:

    The loops under construction earlier in the day:



    Next, the plan for the turntable. I may add extra roads to the right, we'll see. This allows the two sidings on the left to be extended by a coach length.


    An additional siding is planned along side the release road with a long storage siding coming toward the camera. This will probably need a station pilot to shunt stock around. It may also incorporate a small representation of the above ground goods shed:


    Finally, I parked 5 trains in three of the new loops. The empty loop is ready to receive another express train going in the direction of Snow Hill. All four tracks will be hidden behind scenery representing a late 1950s skyline:


    Nothing will happen now until tomorrow afternoon. World Cup Rugby rules the morning!
  7. LarryG

    LarryG Western Thunderer

    It's all coming together nicely (laser cut hot-drink mat suitably placed). It's an immense task in 7mm because this scale is constructional work almost every step of the way, but you're younger than me ha ha.
    Andy P and Focalplane like this.
  8. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    This afternoon, after enjoying two rugby matches in the morning, I went to work on the turntable area and also extended the two coach sidings.



    A scenic "wall" is placed between Moor Street proper and the turntable. Think of the turntable as a scenic area that is not really part of the layout but represents a much condensed Tyseley 84E.

    The buildings in the corner of the second photo are parked there at the moment but will eventually include scenes representing Small Heath (BSA, Singer Cars, etc.) I have placed the mess hut from Penmaenpool in the foreground of the second photo for the use of coach cleaning staff. The ballast on the coach sidings is temporary to see if ground cork would work. I will sweep it away and probably use Woodland Scenics ballast as elsewhere but fine for sidings rather than coarse for the main line.

    The turntable area will probably be populated with some steam loco servicing equipment, but no coaling stage or ash removal is likely to appear
    David B, Geoff, LarryG and 2 others like this.
  9. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    Incidentally, that small chest of drawers under the turntable in the first photo above came from IKEA for €29. It is small but good value. I may buy one or two more when next in Montpellier. Ideal for holding materials, etc.
  10. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    I really like these ballast weathering efforts by Alan on his thread. They reminded me of an interesting photo on the cover of Steam Around the West Midlands by Michael Welsh, recently purchased. This shows a King emerging from Snow Hill Tunnel with an UP express. As well as the brown ballast I have used for the Moor Street platforms roads, there is a covering of fresh grey ballast in places. The photo also includes the sand trap on the DOWN line, ready to derail any wagons loose on the 1 in 45 incline through the tunnel.

    The photo can be inspected here.
    Geoff, Alan and Lyndhurstman like this.
  11. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    I've been following your progress :thumbs: and have some idle thoughts which are not strictly prototypical for Moor St.....

    Could you not extend the kickback siding (towards the camera) to join up with the turntable? This would give a bit more flexibility when operating the layout with friends especially if there is only one point at the station throat from the 'main line'. One operating the 'main line' and another 'switching/shunting' the goods and engine shed with deliveries e.g. the odd wagon and van.

    It would also dispense the need for a 'scenic' wall twixt turntable and carriage sidings thereby incorporating the turntable within the entire scenic section. Selective placement of loco depot related buildings e.g. mess hut etc and a small service building for carriage cleaners, etc would ensure the each scenic area is a diorama in it's own right without appearing disjointed and detracting from the overall Moor St ambience.

    Or... have a double slip instead of the Y point in front of the loco and join this with the turntable giving direct access from the loco release road!

    PS - I would have expected the coaster to be in French! Modèle Chemin de Fer - temps pour Dubonnet - Naturellement :rolleyes:
  12. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer


    Many thanks for your comments - my good lady wife particularly likes Dubonnet, which, though made near Perpignan, is impossible to buy here except on line via the "big river in America Sud"!

    As to the layout design, I agree with your suggestions but. . . . I have a minimum radius constraint! Which is why the turntable area is walled off.

    The planned sidings that would represent the main Goods Station adjacent to the Platform 3 release road will provide some interesting shunting possibilities, with the traverser providing run around for the loco. I am still playing with this concept as there are several permutations and it would be more prototypical to place the main upper level Goods Shed adjacent to the release road:

    Moor Street Station: Ex-GWR 4-6-0 No 5946 'Marwell Hall' stands at Platform 3 after arriving with the 9:10am Kingswear to Moor Street service

    I don't have a lot of space to play with but could add a strip of plywood if necessary.

    The minimum radius problem does not allow this siding to connect to the turntable area. In fact I rather like the idea of slotting in light engine movements on the DOWN main line.

    There are also shunting possibilities in the Hoist area between the platforms and the main line, using the goods loop on the Moor Street approach road.

    It now occurs to me that the track plan needs to be modified, the possible Goods Station being dashed lines:

    Track Plan Concept.jpg

    Numbers - point levers, Red Letters - basic signals
    Bobbiskit and Deano747 like this.
  13. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    I had completely forgot about this...:oops:. And of course you wouldn't want to make the boards too deep otherwise you could not reach.
    Focalplane likes this.
  14. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    This is one of the few problems I have with 7mm scale. My reach and my ability to climb steps and crawl on the baseboards is not going to improve with age, try as I can to stall the inevitable!

    this evening I applied a “soil” coloured paint to the rest of the scenic layout in preparation for applying ground cover, etc.
  15. LarryG

    LarryG Western Thunderer

    With widening the goods yard three times, I had overlooked that the baseboard had become 3 feet wide. Had to stand on a plastic stool when recently replacing a point and soldering on feeds etc.

    As regards track colouring, if you have a portable compressor & spraygun, you could use grey ballast and colour it to suit afterwards. Real ballast gets weathered with spray...:)
    Focalplane likes this.
  16. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer


    I also need stools to reach the back of the layout and a two step one now lives in the railway room. Part of the reason is not just depth but also I chose a relatively high baseboard level as I think 7mm trains need to be viewed more from the side than from above.

    The answer is a type of “cherry picker” as used in some car repair shops. They are available in the US for hobbyists at a very reasonable price.
  17. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    I have cleared the decks this morning to lay out a possible Goods Station siding and headshunt with a small representation of the Goods Station building included in the design. Three photos (the plan follows the diagram in Post #411):

    Looking toward the station throat:


    Looking toward the station building:


    And a close up of the approximate plan for the Goods Station building (outlined using spanner and rulers):


    The Goods Station building will be quite tall so it could impede coupling and uncoupling locos. I have left open space at each end of the island platform to reach in. The siding inside the building will cover the track plus a space for unloading goods. The long walls are open at the base, so there will be plenty of activity visible inside. From an operating point of view, the upper shed was primarily used for perishable goods which arrived during the night. These trains included both fish and fruit and vegetables. The original shed had two sidings with a platform against one and direct loading to cart and lorry from the other. To cover both types of operation I will have the platform stretch half way along the shed interior, complete with staff office. These features are all documented on the warwickshirerailways.com web site.

    The headshunt curve needs to be checked for its potential radius. Note that the "signal box" levers will have a low wall around them, faced with brick paper.

    Train movements will be as follows:
    • Goods train enters Moor Street and stops on the Release Road.
    • Locomotive uncouples and moves forward onto Traverser 3.
    • Locomotive is moved onto Platform 3 Road and moves back past its train.
    • Locomotive switches to Release Road and moves forward to couple up to its train.
    • Trains reverses on to headshunt and then moves forwards into Goods Station.
    • (If shunting is required this can be achieved between Release Road and Goods Station siding.)
    • The locomotive can then move across to the hoist yard to do any shunting required their before returning to pick up the empties.
    • The train then departs for Bordesley Yard having moved the brake van to the rear.
    I am not going to do more on this for a couple of weeks, the concept needs to gel!
    Pencarrow, Deano747, LarryG and 3 others like this.
  18. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer

    I made up a freight train this evening to test the Goods Station concept. Pannier plus 8 wagons/vans and a brake van will work. Nowhere near the capacity that the Goods Station was designed for but again, the ambiance is what counts.

    In practicing some new (to me) scenic methods I decided the ideal place to work on is the turntable area. I have not forgotten more important areas of the layout but keeping several areas "on the go" means I don't sit around waiting for glue or paint to dry.
    Last edited: 27 October 2019
  19. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    I would be satisfied if the headshunt radius is sufficient for a small shunting loco (0-6-0). Just place a sign at the 'entrance' to say no locomotives larger than XX class past this point. i.e. out of bounds to larger classes which makes for more interest. :)

    I'd be inclined to turn the 'signal box' into an infill curved industrial building following the track curvature ........with possibly a loading door for spotting cars (US parlance). This would hide the levers if the layout is photographed from the carriage sidings.

    Another idea after observing the photos I'm afraid.......:oops: . The red triangle could be infilled with a flap hinged at X on which you could have background buildings to complete the scene. The viewing side join will be hidden by the platforms and the flap will still allow access if required.

  20. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer


    i agree with you about an infill for the red triangle access space. It would have to lift out, though, not be hinged and made of very light materials.

    I had thought of restricting access to the Goods Station to panniers, etc. but the curve still has to be large enough to avoid buffer lock when shunting. Over on the other side of the passenger area the three hoist sidings were worked with electric capstans and a wagon sized traverser. I have no photographic evidence of how far into the Goods Station yards steam engines were allowed to go. Some fascinating photos on my favourite web site:

    Moor Street Station: View of a demonstration showing how wagons are moved on a traverser whilst in the background the second wagon hoist to lower shed 'B' can be seen

    Moor Street Station: View of Moor Street goods yard looking in the direction of Tyseley with the passenger station located on to the left of the goods shed

    Moor Street Station: A colour view from the cab of 350hp diesel shunter of the wagon hoists seen in British Railways Western Region days

    Should photos ever be taken of the layout other than for personal use and for sharing on WT I suppose a building shell could be fitted over the levers. A decision on this can wait a bit longer!

    Many thanks for your thoughts, Paul