4mm Cwm Prysor - Modelling the Bala-Blaenau Ffestiniog Branch

Discussion in 'Layout Progress' started by 7428 84J, 13 July 2016.

  1. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Hello all

    I'm currently in the process of building my first proper layout, and first exhibition layout, Cwm Prysor. Although relatively small at 10ft in length, it will be part of a home layout extending the line across the Viaduct and along the mountain side.

    The Boards were laser cut by Tim Horn. SMP track was used on the straights, while the siding used S4 Society sleepers. The turnout had some help on the vees from Andy Cooper.


    Last edited: 13 July 2016
  2. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Some examples of stock.
    The Blaenau Branch's motive power was in the hands of tank engines, primarily the 57XX, 74XX and 58XX.

    7428 (a firm favourite of mine you may have guessed) was produced using the bachmann 64XX as a basis. I currently have made three 74s from this method, and intend to do 7403 next. 7431, another one of mine was the basis of an article I wrote on the conversion in Railway Modeller earlier in the year.


    Some examples of goods stock, a 16T and two exPOs



    Finally, two vans I've recently finished, two older diagram LMS vans built from Cambrian kits.


  3. Compton castle

    Compton castle Western Thunderer

    Welcome along, look forward to seeing your updates
    7428 84J likes this.
  4. Scale7JB

    Scale7JB Western Thunderer

    Definitely inspirational !

  5. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Cheers Steve, I'm getting there.... ;)

    That is most kind. I'm still learning and trying new ideas. This will be the first time I've properly wired a layout (Lenz DCC) so I'm taking it relatively steady. My intentions are to get it wired, the point finished (and trap) by the end of August, before moving onto landscaping and scenics. First Show is October 2017 (Hartlepool).
    allegheny1600 likes this.
  6. Neil

    Neil Western Thunderer

    The presentation of the layout looks incredibly sharp from the outset.
    Captain Kernow likes this.
  7. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Thanks Neil. I had a good idea of how I wanted the layout to look and did several rough sketches which Tim turned into the basic layout.
  8. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    One of the appeals of this line (as someone new to building stock) was that trains were made up of either one, to two coaches.

    4645 is seen where eventually the platform and station house at Cwm Prysor will be situated, with polystyrene temporarily in place (partly unformed). The coach isn't strictly the correct diagram, being an E147 (E157 and E167 Brake Comps were the most common coach in the late 50s).

    Captain Kernow, Tim V, chrisb and 3 others like this.
  9. Scale7JB

    Scale7JB Western Thunderer

    I still have this little devil on my left shoulder that says I should be building myself a micro layout/demonstration track in Scale7, and this thread really isn't helping..

  10. FiftyFourA

    FiftyFourA Western Thunderer

    As a dyed in the wool NE/LNER/BR NE Region man I have to admit that the modelling on this layout is excellent and I will follow it's progress with interest. Incidentally, I really like your weathering - understated so that it looks 'just right'. I also think you should pester JB so that he starts his S7 micro layout :D. In the meantime I look forward to your next post and seeing it in the flesh at Hartlepool next year as it's just down the road from me.
    7428 84J likes this.
  11. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    Welcome to the forum and a great start. We went to Black Rock Sands, Porthmadog camping at half term and we drove back that route, up the valley and over in to Bala. Stunning scenery with the old railway line carved in to the side of the hill it must have been spectacular. So I will be interested to see how this develops.
    7428 84J and Dog Star like this.
  12. Dan Randall

    Dan Randall Western Thunderer

    Go for it JB - It's the perfect excuse to build and run those Western Region locos you so desire! :thumbs:

    (Welcome to WT by the way Tom).


    7428 84J and Scale7JB like this.
  13. Dog Star

    Dog Star Western Thunderer

    Now that is a memory jogger - just about 60 years. I recall making camp on the side of a hill and then cutting drainage ditches above and to the side of the tent. Pitching a tent in the rain... a 12' ridge tent with a fly sheet on a separate ridge pole giving us cover at either end of the tent. The fly sheet was put up first, using the top ridge, and then the tent was suspended from the lower ridge so that we could erect and take down the main tent in the (almost) dry.
  14. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    A couple of items of rolling stock I'm currently working on.
    LMS dia 2108, produced from the sides and chassis of an LMS fruit van, and ends of a ratio van, following the method of Ian Fleming and Jim Smith-Wright.


    Freight on the branch in the late 50s is rather interesting. Bogie Bolsters, Pipe and Tubes all being common for carrying materials for the building of Trawsfynydd Power Station.

    Another familiar item of rolling stock on the line, was Presflo traffic which was, again being transported for the building of the Nuclear Power Station, but was also used for transportation down to Blaenau Ffestiniog for the Hydroelectric dam above Tanygrisiau.


    Replacement buffers, and transfers from cambridge custom transfers (I've a photo showing the small portland cement logo on a presflo on the branch.)
  15. Scale7JB

    Scale7JB Western Thunderer

    Yes, now you mention it, it is a very interesting period to model that area!

    7428 84J likes this.
  16. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Very much so. I've been in touch with an ex signalman, and he commented on the amount of Bogie Bolster's on the branch in the late 1950s.

    Here's a photo of Ben Brooksbank, (used through creative commons act). I think this is 9669 and gives an example of the passenger trains in this period, but you will see the two Presflos in the siding, for use on the Stwlan Dam high above Tanygrisiau. Both coaches in this photograph, I believe are Hawksworth E167 Brake Composites.

  17. Alan

    Alan Western Thunderer

    All looking good Tom, Weathering as usual to a high standard.
  18. 7428 84J

    7428 84J Active Member

    Cheers Alan, hope all is well and good with you! :)
  19. Ressaldar

    Ressaldar Western Thunderer

    HI Tom,

    welcome to WT, you have certainly got off in the preferred manner - lots of photos:thumbs::thumbs::thumbs: I look forward to future postings.


  20. iak63

    iak63 Western Thunderer

    Splendid to see this project here abouts.
    Great stuff Tom and all power to your elbow...