7mm Llangunllo to Bleddfa Road

Discussion in 'Layout Progress' started by Geoff, 27 September 2019.

  1. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    Looks good Geoff.

    I cannot see from the photo angle - is there a ditch alongside the cinder track?
  2. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Thank you Dave, I assume that you mean the gaps along the sides of the cinder track? If so those are a cross between some shoddy workmanship, and a first attempt to model some signs of erosion caused by water draining off the land and running down, and across the track. The one on the right needs tidying up with some fine gravel, weeds and long grass. I'm taking inspiration from the real things at the top of the lane where we live, and Gordon Gravetts ideas on modelling road surfaces, which have appeared in MRJ and his book "Modelling Grassland and Landscape Detailing"


  3. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    DAS Platform Face.........

    For the past week I have been experimenting with different methods in hope of producing a half decent stone platform face. Three attempts later and I think I might have cracked it. My first attempt at using Daler board overlaid with DAS modelling clay failed, possibly because I left it too close to a radiator to dry out. I then tried scribing some 'Palight' foamboard, and though it worked fine for Llangunllo's platform face I wasn't impressed with my 7mm version. So it was back to DAS, but this time I kept it well away from any heat sources whilst it dried, apart from two small cracks which were easily filled with more clay, all turned out well the second time around. The surface and edges were sanded down and then using an old blunt engineers scriber I started to carve the stones.


    This is the Mk2 face in the process of being scribed, it is a rather messy job and appears a little daunting at first but I rather enjoyed myself once I got into the swing of things.

    P1170231 (2).JPG

    Two hours later it was ready for painting, the DAS is slightly porous so I used washes of artist and Tamiya acrylics, in hope that the paint would soak in to the surface to give some interesting tones. I used various shades of grey, earth, sap green and off white, varying the mix as I went along. Finally, and whilst the paint was just a little damp a light dusting of talc was applied to blend everything together, and add a little more texture.


    I'll leave the face in situ for a day or two, then if I am happy with it a little dry brushing will follow. All being well it will then be glued in place ready for the coping stones and platform surface to be added. Ballasting can then commence followed by the point rodding, two jobs that I am really looking forward to. :rolleyes:

  4. Brian T

    Brian T Western Thunderer

    That looks good Geoff,
    And i see that you`ve scribbed the cutting marks in the faces of the blocks too...:thumbs:

    Last edited: 11 December 2019
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  5. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Thanks Brian, I'm a glutton for punishment and was only half mad when I started. :)

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  6. matto21

    matto21 Western Thunderer

    Absolutely wonderful Geoff!
  7. Muddysblues

    Muddysblues Western Thunderer

    Great stuff Geoff, it just keeps getting better this.

    Best regards
  8. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Thanks for your kind comments and likes chaps.

    Happy with the platform face the next job was to add some coping stones, so I ventured out to measure a few that remain on the site of our former G.C station that closed in 1967. The whole site is now a linear park and some of the stones now form part of a footpath. A quick check to make sure nobody was around walking their dog, and out came the tape measure and note book. The stones measured 2ft 6" wide x 4" deep and varied in length from 3ft to 3ft 9". So I have settled on a size of 3ft x 2ft 6" and cut strips out of some 1.5 mm styrene sheet, naturally I didn't have enough and the local, so called model shop doesn't stock anything but red boxes, and the usual Peco lines. So I placed an order with Slaters' which gave me an excuse to add another of their wagon kits to my collection at the same time, so another ex Coopercraft 5 plank open should be here soon.


    More work has been done on the platform face, I've dry brushed a little earth around a few of the stones, plonked a few grass tufts in front, and the first section of coping stones on top to give me an idea of how it will look. I see this length of track becoming more overgrown as it heads towards the buffer stop. The distance twixt between the inner edge of the rail and platform face is being checked with a cheap and cheerful styrene gauge, I have another to set the edge of the coping stones.

    Whilst I await fresh supplies of styrene sheet I will continue painting the rails, normally I would leave that job until the ballasting has been done. But the platform face needs to be in place before ballasting can take place and it is easier to paint the far rail beforehand. I have reached the stage now where I have to think a couple of moves ahead to save me from snookering myself.


    In the meantime parts for the water tank and column have arrived, the tank panels are by 'Invertrain', and the water column is by 'Ragstone Models'. It is a model of the watering columns that could be found in yards and engine sheds, not shewn in the photo are two beautifully cast hand wheels for the valves. A paper drinking straw wrapped in masking tape is the recommended way of modelling the water bag, that is something that I haven't tried before so fingers crossed.

    Last edited: 10 December 2019
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  9. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    I had planned to ballast at least half of the track, paint the rails and stain the sleepers during the past week. But thanks to Sod and his law my modelling time has been rather restricted. However I have managed to spend odd moments working on the water tower which is now ready for its base to be covered in DAS modelling clay........


    As you can see I have cheated and used one of 'LCuts' panels together with a matching window frame, but the other walls have been made from 3mm 'Palight' foamboard. I did have concerns about the size of the building, especially the window, but once I put 7444 against it everything looked fine to my eye. As a view blocker I think the tower will work well, if not then t will be back to the drawing board.


    The platform coping stones have not yet been fitted, neither has the water column as I am wary of damaging it. With luck the DAS will be applied over the weekend, and then the fun can begin as I start to carve the stonework.

  10. Brian T

    Brian T Western Thunderer

    That`s a good idea for a view block,and it seems to work well.

    Without going back through the thread,is the back story that this a truncated line,in which case could you disspence with the buffer stop behind the water tank?,and have progressively grassy track along the line till it ends in tall grasses and bushes just as it hit`s the backscene,along with a 'Engines must not pass this point' board about an inch in,(or about where the buffer stop would have started)

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  11. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    Or alternatively chain a sleeper across the rails partially buried in weeds and grass.
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  12. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Thanks for your thoughts and likes chaps.

    The plan is to have an old van such as an Iron Mink acting as a buffer stop, which is why I tarted up an old Peco buffer stop rather than use another of Ragstones superb models. With an eight year old engine driver around I can't risk anything less at the moment ;)

  13. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Time to sign off for another year, so I will leave you with a few photos showing the current state of play....

    The first is of the water tower with its DAS covered walls awaiting some scribed stonework


    Earlier this week I borrowed a friends autocoach to check the platform and station canopy clearances. My own coach is still a kit of parts but I hope to have it completed by this time next year.


    The platform is being textured with Carrs ash and the dust created when I sanded the water tower walls....


    Another view of the platform following a few washes of artist acrylics and the planting of some grass and weeds. The section closest to the camera is being modelled in an overgrown unkempt state, still plenty to do yet but I'm in no rush.


    The Pannier now has etched cab plates for 7416, but I have not yet got around to fitting the smokebox door or 85C shed plates. The grass will eventually be trimmed back and some will be pulled up to leave areas of stubble, well that's the plan.


    ...........and finally a view of the layout taken from the crossing keepers cottage. The coach which is a superb model has since been returned to its owner,


    Best Wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,
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  14. Muddysblues

    Muddysblues Western Thunderer

    Hello Geoff, it really is coming on well, Seasons Greetings to you and your Family, and Seasons Greeting to all other WT Members.

    Best regards
    Geoff likes this.
  15. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    It has been a while since my last update, problems logging in and uploading photos being partly the blame for that. Not the fault of the forum software I hasten to add but a dodgy laptop. Anyway nothing much has really happened since the turn of the year. The track has been ballasted and is in the course of being detailed, some grass and weeds have started to take root. Basic shells for a platelayers hut and coal merchants office have been built and a couple of new locos have arrived.


    An overview of the layout, some grass has taken root since this photo was taken, and the goods shed is now supported on some brick pillars which await painting. Whilst down in the coal yard an office has sprung up together with a point lever and water column. In the foreground is the shell for a platelayers hut, which has been scaled up from my old Coopercraft model that appeared on Llangunllo.


    A new arrival is this superb Minerva Pannier which currently awaits its detailing pack fitting and etched plates, she will be numbered 7719. Plates being on order from Narrow Planet, she was shedded at 85C Hereford throughout the 1950's. The grass tufts were made using my 'flockbox' and were planted as the track was ballasted.


    A close up of the coal siding, the yard office is a larger version of Henry Stephens office that appeared at Llangunllo, the water column is one of Ragstone Models lovely casting and awaits a restraining strap for the water bag and a coat of paint. Last of all is the MSE etched point lever.


    Grass is a mixture of my own mats made with my 'flockbox' and Silflor Winter Pasture, with an extra dusting of static grass fibres.



    An old friend from my 4mm days 1455, she is one of the long awaited Dapol models, and by golly it has been well worth the wait. Plates are again by Narrow Planet


    You might recall that I borrowed an auto coach from one of my friends to check platform and other clearances, well since then he has given up modelling in 7mm scale and offered me the coach for a very reasonable sum. So here it is with 1455 on the Bleddfa Donkey, until my E147 coach has been completed.


    Finally 1455 rumbles over the crossing at Bleddfa which is going to be downgraded to a simple occupation crossing. The gate is currently held in place with blu-tack whilst I compose the scene,, hinges and other detail have yet to be fitted.

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  16. Brian T

    Brian T Western Thunderer

    The 14xx look`s right at home on the layout in amongest the unkempt track.
    And the gated lane is also coming along nicley too.

  17. Muddysblues

    Muddysblues Western Thunderer

    Hello Geoff, hope you and the family are ok ? and everybody & their loved ones on WT are safe and well during these unprecedented and unnerving times.

    Great to see things back up and running at Bleddfa Rd, inspiration abounds again for sorry souls like myself trying to get a giddy on.

    Thanks for posting the lovely pics, I do like the fact that nature is taking over the tracks :thumbs:

    Best regards as always
    Geoff likes this.
  18. Geoff

    Geoff Western Thunderer

    Thank you Brian


    Here's another photo of 1455 amongst the grass and beside the first of two crossing gates. She needs autogear junction boxes fitted to both buffer beams, and the gap between the chimney stack and its saddle needs filling. She will obviously gain a crew and lamps at some point along with a light weathering.


    Hi Craig, yes things are slowly returning to as near normal as they can be, during these challenging times thank you. Hope you, your family and everyone else here on the forum and beyond stay well. To help inspire you to get a giddy on, and seeing that you like the overgrown track, here's an earlier photo of the quarry branch. Locos and stock negotiate it with ease, though I did have to trim some of the longer grasses that struck the coupling links.


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  19. NHY 581

    NHY 581 Western Thunderer

    Splendid progress Geoff.

    The layout is really coming together very nicely.

    As for the 14xx.......I really do wonder how long I can hold out....

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  20. Alan

    Alan Western Thunderer

    Go for it Rob you know you want to.
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