The Low Quay Yard

Discussion in 'Entries' started by Richard H, 12 August 2017.

  1. Threadmark: Introduction to the Low Quay Yard
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer


    Low Quay Yard” is my attempt actually to finish a layout after decades of unfinished projects; if it doesn’t work I may have to relinquish all modelling ambitions, stop buying the magazines, and retire to a hermitage. I hope the ‘cameo’ approach will help me to bring a small layout to exhibition standard within the set time.

    Size of scenic area: 51” x 18” (nominal)
    Overall size of layout: 51” x 18” x 18” high, plus dismountable fiddle yard extensions
    Scale/gauge: 4mm / 00 gauge
    Setting: LNER; mid-1930s; ex-NER Blyth & Tyne Rly area; urban/industrial setting; goods only

    The track-plan is relatively conventional but very compressed, with a short loop to enable shunting and three main destinations for wagons, one siding being reversed in relation to the others to add ‘interest’ to operations. Trains will be short, but I want to be able to run two locomotives at any one time, and employ a variety of traffic.

    FINAL Track Plan 170811 - annotated - reduced for forum.jpeg

    The scenic board will be supplemented with three short, dismountable off-scene storage tracks, one at each end of the running track and one at the end of the long siding at the rear of the layout. It will also be possible to operate the layout in a limited way from the right-hand end only, if space is constrained.

    The track-plan and scenery are justified by an “imagined history” rooted in the actual history of its location. The real history is well researched, but elements of the imagined history are undoubtedly whimsical and may require the occasional suspension of disbelief. Both histories will be explained in other postings.

    It will be important (and sometimes challenging) to accept and manage the compromises necessary to meet the deadline; I shall use proprietary stock and kits where possible but build specifically local or defining items from scratch, adopting a theatre-like approach in which unseen parts of scenery are not modelled.

    Planning is based on historical research. The initial concept for the model was explored using pencil, eraser and lots of scrap paper. That concept is being tested and refined on a sheet of foam-board the full size of the scenic baseboard, using track templates and paper/card representations of buildings. These are made from photocopies copies of my working drawings which are based mainly on old photographs.

    This approach has helped me to grasp a sense of scale and the available space, and to work out how I might place the buildings in relation to ground levels and neighbouring structures. The small size of the layout makes this full size approach completely viable.

    To conclude this introductory summary, here is a much enlarged section from a photograph showing the approximate site of my Low Quay Yard, as it was in 1958 - but little had actually changed here since 1913.

    Approximate site of the Low Quay Yard - reduced for forum.jpeg

    Richard H
  2. PaulR

    PaulR Western Thunderer

    As we are mates of long standing, I've been following your plans for this layout and it's a great concept. Good luck Richard, I know we'll be egging each other on for the next eighteen months!
  3. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Absolutely! Thanks for the encouragement - I've been following yours, too, and I think the mill idea is a super scheme - so very typical of the area and crying out to be modelled. As for the egging-on, I'll all for it - I'm hoping that my share of the eggs emerges as a light and fluffy soufflé, but I have a niggling fear that they could end up scrambled.
    jonte likes this.
  4. Threadmark: Low Lights History
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    I understand that this forum encourages the use of pictures and I shall use them to illustrate material progress. This post, however, describes the actual historical setting for my fictional cameo layout, and is therefore text-based, the only illustrations being a couple of maps. Please forgive me!

    My fictional Low Quay Yard is set in the Low Lights area of North Shields. The following is a brief and necessarily generalised account of the real historical setting … and its railways:

    What became the Low Lights area was the site of a few medieval fishermen’s shacks (shielings, or shiels) clustered around the shore where a stream flowed into the Tyne near the river mouth. From this core, North Shields expanded west along the riverside, eventually developing as a port with fishing and other maritime trade, salt production and a variety of non-maritime industries.

    Clifford’s Fort, an artillery emplacement, was established on the shoreline here in 1672, part of a national strategy to protect significant ports following the Dutch Navy’s raid on the Medway in 1667. The fort was garrisoned until the 1920s.

    The Low Lights area probably acquired the name during the 18thC. Beacons had long been erected there to warn mariners of the shallows and vicious rocks surrounding the approaches to the river. In 1727 a permanent lighthouse, the Low Light, was built inside Clifford’s Fort and a corresponding High Light was erected at the top of the riverbank, so that mariners approaching the Tyne could align the Low and High Lights to find the narrow channel into the river mouth. The channel shifted over time, and so in 1810 two new lighthouses were built on the new alignment, being known as the New Low Light and the New High Light. All four survive although none are still in use as lighthouses.

    By the middle of the 18thC those who could afford it were moving out of the old riverside town to new Georgian developments along the top of the river banks. This exodus hastened the decline of the old town as a place of residence. The riverside streets, and the buildings piled chaotically on the steep banks confining the old town, were increasingly left to maritime trades, commerce, taverns, industry, and people whose circumstances prevented them from moving to better accommodation.

    During the 18thC the Low Lights became increasingly industrialised, and by the middle of the 19thC heavy industries were established in the Pow Dene / Low Lights area, including a large brewery, a large pottery with at least three bottle kilns, several foundries, smithies, a tannery, a gas works, a brick works, a flint mill, and other manufactories. There was also a large sector of industries and businesses handling and processing the fish landed at North Shields, and servicing the fishing industry and the port activities generally.

    This OS 25" 2nd Edition map shows the Low Lights area at the end of the 19thC. The railway marked in blue is the NER Tynemouth Branch with its coal depot, and the approximate route of the old Whitley Waggonway is marked as a broken red line:

    OS 25" 2nd Ed - Low Lights with approx route Whitley waggonway in red - reduced size for forum.jpeg

    The established population, was supplemented by migrant and transient populations such as rural workers seeking employment and stability, and Scottish and Irish people seeking to escape dire circumstances in their homelands. There was a large transient population of mariners and other itinerant workers included militia regiments during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars.

    The transient population included the seasonal influx of Herring Girls, the enormous mobile workforce that gutted and packed the fish landed by the fishing fleet as the boats followed the southward migration of the herring. During the season, these hard-working women would travel southward from the Shetlands to East Anglia, working at huge troughs filled with tons of fish and filing thousands of barrels with fish, salt and brine; using a razor-sharp knife they could gut and dress a herring in less than two seconds.

    Fresh fish was carried by cart to Tynemouth Station as quickly as possible, to be exported by fast train; preserved fish and fish products were exported with less urgency.

    In 1926 a local historian described the Sand End (of the fish quay) and the Low Lights in pre-industrial days as having been, "...the pleasure grounds of Shields. There were bathing machines and stalls in the summer time, and the place was like a fairground". The town offered seafarers other opportunities for distraction, however, that he felt unable to celebrate; a late 19thC survey claimed that the ½-mile long “Low Street” of North Shields accommodated 103 taverns and houses of (usually less than salubrious) entertainment, and an early 20thC missionary described North Shields as “the most vice-ridden port in Christendom”.

    Today, the fishing industry is much reduced, and the heavy industries have gone. The Low Lights has some mainly light industry and commercial activity, and some fish merchants still trade there, along with a range of restaurants, bars and fish & chips shops; new residential developments are interspersed with sites awaiting redevelopment.

    The Railways at the Low Lights and on the Quayside

    Eight separate, independent railway systems are known to have existed at the Low Lights, on the Fish Quay, and the along the North Shields riverside at different periods between the early 19thC until the mid-20thC.

    1. Between 1811 and 1848 the Whitley Waggonway was used to transport stone from Whitley Quarry and coal to a low staith at the Low Lights. The waggonway crossed the Tynemouth road on the east side of the Pow Burn (just east of the present railway/Metro bridge at the top of Tanner’s Bank), then ran down a steep rope-worked incline on the east side of the Pow Burn to reach the Low Lights area, then past the west side of Clifford’s Fort, to reach a low staith situated just west of the New Low Light itself and projecting past the Light into the river. After 1860 the line of the waggonway formed the foundation of part of the Blyth & Tyne Railway Tynemouth Branch which terminated just north of the Low Lights area. The Blyth & Tyne station remained in use as a coal depot until 1971.

    The waggonway at the Low Lights is clearly shown on Wood's Plan of North Shields, surveyed in 1826:

    Wood's Plan 1826 - North Shields - crop of waggonway at Low Lights - reduced for forum.jpeg

    2. From 1888 until about 1907 Clifford’s Fort housed the Tyne Submarine Miners; a unit of an Empire-wide force protecting harbours from attack and invasion, they assembled, laid and maintained a grid of submarine mines laid in the harbour entrance (i.e in the area between the long north and south piers). In the event of enemy shipping entering the mined area the ship’s position could be triangulated and the appropriate mine or mines could be detonated electrically from a control room in the fort. Inside Clifford’s Fort there were four storage sheds and an assembly shed connected by a narrow-gauge railway system, which then led through the final assembly and fusing shed before descended an incline to leave the Fort through a sallyport gate and run along a short quay (the site of the present RNLI station) to where the mines were loaded onto the unit’s minelaying vessel. The gauge appears to have been 18” (the normal Army narrow-gauge of the time) and would have been worked using small wagons (bogies) pushed by hand.

    3. A third railway system was installed on the Union Quay, consisting of a line of rails (wider than standard gauge) running along the quay quite close to the edge upon which a large self-propelling crane ran back and forth. Two cranes are known to have been used, the earlier one being steam-powered and the later one electric. This dedicated rail system was probably installed by the 1880s, and the electric crane was still in use in the mid-20thC with traces of the tracks remaining until about the 1980s.

    4. The fourth system is shown on the OS “10 ft” Town Plan of c.1896 and consists of a single line between a yard and a building in a foundry at the Low Lights.

    5. The fifth system, shown on the same map linked three buildings in the large pottery at the Low Lights. It is thought that these internal lines were probably worked with either horse- or man-power.

    6. The 25" OS of c.1895 shows a line in the brickworks.

    7. The seventh system is shown was an internal system at a graving (dry) dock called the Low Dock at the west end of the Western Quay; this connected two sheds, the quay side and the graving dock itself, and accommodated a travelling crane.

    8. Finally, at the extreme western end of the North Shields riverside, Smith’s Dock had an extensive internal system serving its huge complex of dry docks. Smiths, who also had docks at South Shields, had a world wide reputation as ship repairers.

    The Whitley waggonway was the only quayside railway connected to the world beyond the riverside.

    In the 1860s there was a proposal to build a deep-water dock at the Low Lights, which undoubtedly would have required a railway system and a connection to main-line railways. This would have required some means of negotiating the significant incline from the railway at Tynemouth to the dockside, a vertical height of about 20 – 25 metres – difficult but not infeasible. The proposal was opposed by the B&T Rly, and after repeated delays was finally abandoned, essentially redundant after the opening of the Albert Edward Dock, and the expansion of the huge coal shipping complexes immediately west of North Shields.

    My next posting will describe the fictional account of the Low Quay Yard,
    Last edited: 23 August 2017
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  5. Lyndhurstman

    Lyndhurstman Western Thunderer

    Excellent stuff, Richard. A smashing bit of research and context.

    Good luck!


  6. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Thank you, Jan - most encouraging!
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  7. Lyndhurstman

    Lyndhurstman Western Thunderer

    No worries, Richard. I hear your caveat on potential relocation to a hermitage. So all power to you.

    I'm in the same boat regarding unfinished layouts. But I'm currently intrigued by the Stockton On Tees Castle Quay branch. Like Low Quay, its worn and weary metals footled amid buildings and across roads. It might (might...) provide some foundations for my plank-sized foray into a 7mm-based layout....


    Last edited: 23 August 2017
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  8. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    I didn't know this quayside system, but I've just had a look at the 25" OS on the National Library of Scotland website, and also found a couple of photos on the web - the Castle Quay seems to hold loads of potential inspiration - a 7mm-based plank-sized layout sounds like an excellent plan.
    Lyndhurstman likes this.
  9. Threadmark: The Low Lights Branch fiction
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Even novice readers of spy thrillers know that an agent’s false identity has to be based on a ‘legend’, a carefully contrived mixture of verifiable evidence and mis-information that creates a false but (hopefully) credible narrative about the agent’s assumed identity.

    Whilst freely acknowledging that railway modellers face fewer and lesser dangers than spies, I do feel that a model railway that does not portray a real place (i.e. a layout that has a false identity) also needs a ‘legend’ to underpin its credibility and coherence.

    In this narrative, the fictive word ‘fict’ is used to denote a ‘fictional fact’; events and locations that are historically true are given in italics.

    The Ficts about one of the many possible futures for the Low Lights after c.1848

    An 1860s proposal for a deep water dock at the Low Lights was never implemented and the Blyth &Tyne Railway adopted the Whitley Waggonway as the foundation of their Tynemouth Branch. After establishing their Tynemouth branch they revived the disused line to the old staith with the primary intention of supplying coal directly from the S E Northumberland coalfield to the industries at Low Lights, and developing coaling facilities for the increasing number of steam-powered fishing vessels.

    The anticipated secondary benefits of the line included traffic generated by the growing fishing industry (rapid transport of fresh fish to wider markets), and by many other industries at the Low Lights and along the riverside (at various times, preserved fish and fish products, salt works, chandlery and other maritime supplies, a tannery, a pottery, breweries, a brick works, ship repair docks, foundries and other engineering). There was also, potentially, a small amount of military traffic serving the garrison at Clifford’s Fort.

    The Whitley Waggonway incline was deemed unsuitable for locomotive working so, a new Low Lights Branch was engineered, the gradients being no worse than those of the steep Quayside Branch at Newcastle. The single line to the old staith was relaid and extended to facilitate direct access to the quayside and two private dock systems, and a number of short sidings laid in to serve other industries crammed into the area. Some of these sidings were inconveniently (even eccentrically) laid out because of industries pre-dating the railway, so a very small yard was built with a ‘run-round’ loop to ease shunting, and minimal locomotive facilities.

    The only viable site for the Low Quay Yard was so constricted that the track-work had to be built to virtually industrial railway standards, and only short-wheelbase locomotives could be used.

    The B&T merged with the North Eastern Railway in 1874. By this time the fishing, ship-repairing and other industries were thriving and the NER deemed the Low Lights branch sufficiently profitable to maintain. For a couple of decades after 1888 its value was enhanced by the importance of the Tyne Submarine Miners, as the Tyne was seen as a strategic east-coast harbour. The Low Lights Branch and the Low Quay Yard therefore survived despite the dominance of the coal and cargo facilities lying west of North Shields.

    In 1885 T.W Worsdell left the GER to become Chief Mechanical Engineer of the NER, inheriting responsibility for its diverse and ageing locomotive stock. He faced an immediate problem concerning the motive power on the Low Lights Branch, as by then the legacy B&TR locomotives were beyond economic (and, in fict, even practical) maintenance. Small, versatile shunting locomotives were needed, which could be operated safely in the peculiar environment of the Low Lights ... and they were needed urgently.

    One of Worsdell’s last projects (in 1883) before leaving the GER had been to design locomotives for the docks and rural tramways of the GER; these were the GER G15 (later LNER Y6) 0-4-0 tram locomotives. In the absence of any readily available standard NER design, and initially as an interim measure, Worsdell adapted his 0-4-0 tram locomotive, modifying the design to create an 0-6-0 capable of coping with the gradients on the branch but small and light enough to work the lines on the branch and the quayside.

    Worsdell’s modified design was, in fict, virtually identical in external appearance to the GER C53 (LNER J70) class 0-6-0 tram locomotive introduced some years later in 1903 by Holden – this is not surprising as they were both developed from Worsdell’s functional and successful 0-4-0 design (and of course Holden had the advantage of referring to Worsdell’s little-known 0-6-0 design).

    Worsdell built two locomotives to this modified design for the Low Lights Branch where, in fict, they proved both efficient and completely safe in the crowded and usually somewhat chaotic quayside environment. They worked exclusively on the branch and at the Low Quay Yard, leaving only to make the short trip for stabling and maintenance at Percy Main locomotive shed and depot. Later, these locomotives were occasionally supplemented by NER locomotives such as the Class H (LNER Y7) 0-4-0Ts and Class H2 (LNER J79) 0-6-0Ts.

    Thirty-five years later, Worsdell’s venerable tram engines were suffering terminal strain due to four years of increased workload combined with reduced maintenance during WW1. Shortly after the Grouping the decision was made that they must journey along the same Final Tracks as their B&TR predecessors. The LNER then faced the same problem that had taxed Thomas Worsdell, but this time they implemented the obvious solution to working the branch and cascaded two of Holden’s tram locomotives, which subsequently worked the branch almost until its closure.

    The Low Lights Branch survived WW2, then during the 1950s and into the 1960s continued to serve the now-declining industrial area, although traffic diminished steadily as a result of road competition and changes in the operation and economics of fishing and other industries.

    Eventually, the British Railways Board issued a statutory announcement that, in view of the economic ficts, disbelief could no longer be suspended and services must cease; the branch was finally closed some time before the old B&T Tynemouth Branch (renamed ‘North Shields’ in c.1864), which survived as a coal depot until its closure in 1971.
    Last edited: 25 August 2017
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  10. Threadmark: The frontage of the Newcastle Arms
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    This posting illustrates initial progress on one of the buildings overlooking The Low Quay Yard, and includes reflections on the process of making it.

    The building was chosen because it represents the late 18thC / early 19thC period of building along the Union Wharf at the foot of the riverbanks. I cannot date the building precisely; the earliest verifiable reference I have found lists it as an inn in 1834 but the building itself could be earlier than that. It remained an inn for the rest of its existence, and is modelled as it appeared in the 1930s.

    The photograph shows only the modelled front of the building, which will form one component in a range of buildings yet to be built. There are still details to add and most of the glazing, some low-relief interior detail, and the entire roof structure are yet to be modelled. The asymmetry is authentic.

    Newcastle Arms - basic frontage 170901 reduced for forum.jpeg

    Because this is my first attempt at scratch-building in a couple of decades, I have regarded it as a practice piece and used it to re-learn a number of techniques and processes such as:
    • interpreting photographic evidence (often tantalisingly incomplete),
    • counting bricks,
    • making pragmatic working drawings and sketches,
    • re-counting bricks,
    • having the right tools to hand,
    • being prepared to use or improvise aids to alignment, and holding tools,
    • attention to detail,
    • trying to anticipate possible difficulties,
    • checking and double-checking … before cutting or fixing … every time …
    • and checking the brick-count,
    • re-discovering some intuitive sense of scale,
    • beginning to re-discover the ‘stagecraft’ of model-making to create the illusion; a model doesn’t have to be constructed like a building just because it portrays one, and sometimes complicated shapes or structures can be regarded for modelling purposes as a series of relatively simple geometrical shapes.
    I have also had to face some personal challenges, chiefly relating to:
    • accepting whatever compromises might be necessary (or perhaps just desirable),
    • patience! (which is sufficiently critical to require that ‘!’) and the self-discipline it demands
    • coping with the unexpected snags, and the inevitable errors (often associated with the lack of either anticipation or patience).
    I have recalled important processes and criteria, such as identifying key features and assessing their “make-ability”, then portraying them with such accuracy as I can manage, but primarily trying do so with neatness, consistency, and within a reasonable time in order to create the desired effect … and I’ve realised that I need to manage all these multiple dimensions without the aid of a Sonic Screwdriver.

    As examples of compromises:
    • I have used styrene sheet with embossed bricks representing “English Garden Wall” bond (produced by S E Finecast) as the nearest textured match I could find to the original brickwork. The difference lies in the number of rows of stretchers between the reinforcing rows of headers; English Garden Wall has three rows of stretchers whereas the original building has five, and,
    • I have to confess that the heavy ornamental mouldings on the pilasters at each side of the ground floor are much simplified. I decided that neither my skills nor the time available could support an attempt to produce the highly ornate carvings satisfactorily, and that it was better to compromise than to produce badly made and visually confusing detail.
    Finally, to illustrate why I need to re-learn so much, here’s a picture of an item that has survived unused in my small stock of scenic odds-and-ends since I first aspired to modelling railways; this is a pack of plastic lettering date from before 1971 and was marketed for use in making titles for cine films which used silver halide photography. For anyone who has only known decimalised coinage, 5/9 means “five shillings and ninepence” which converts to about 28p.

    Pre-1971 lettering in stock 170901 reduced for forum.jpeg

    With apologies for the introspective woffle, I am actually just reporting a tangible start; I have not yet reached a milestone, but perhaps the first furlong is in sight,
    Last edited: 1 September 2017
  11. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Oh, very 'nice' Richard; looks like you've never been away from the art. I suppose it's like riding the proverbial bike.

    Your list, btw, struck a chord with me; I've never thought to sit down and analyse the process. Very true, as I've recently discovered with my little project.

    It's also reassuring that others experience the occasional angst of our adorable hobby and resign themselves to paths of least resistance for the sake of expediency. I've also employed similar shortcuts (or should that be fudges?), not just because I'm short on time; more a case of lacking in the skills department.

    I'll go now, Richard, but before I do may I say I'm really impressed by both concept and presentation. Almost like reading a modelling book! I'm also thinking of entering. In contrast, mine will be brief in presentation and short in stature(for 'O' gauge, anyway). On second thoughts, there's no point me entering!

    Best of luck, Richard, and I'll follow with great interest.


  12. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Hi Jonte,
    Thanks for your kind - and thoughtful - comments. I don't intend to sound like a modelling book, but I do find it hard to separate the practice from my tendency to introspection.

    I sincerely hope that you do enter the competition - I also looked at the standard of entries so far and thought that I should not enter, but I have actually found that the sense of commitment has been unexpectedly stimulating, as has the positive response to what I've posted on this forum. One result is that my modelling activity is gaining momentum and, I think, also becoming a little more focused and efficient than it was.

    I've never before written about my modelling, and doing so feels rather strange, and perhaps a little daunting as I don't yet have very much to write about. I feel that there's little sense in not taking the risk and being fairly open about both the models and the process, though, because logging progress seems to be an expected part of the competition.

    The idea of a small 0-gauge layout sounds like an interesting challenge, but with huge potential - go for it, and best of luck!
    Best wishes,
    jonte likes this.
  13. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Hi again, Richard.

    I recognise more of myself in your further jottings, but unlike me, you put it extremely well.

    Thanks for your warm encouragement; perhaps I shall.


  14. Threadmark: Baseboard constructed
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Last week I spent a very happy three days with my friend of many years, Paul (the Squire of Old Parrock), working together to design and build our respective baseboards. Using the same general design concept and overall dimensions, we each produced the main frame of our baseboards, including the curved backscene. We used 6mm birch ply, 3mm MDF, and waterproof wood glue. Here are three photos of my board, and one showing the twin boards together.

    The first photograph shows my baseboard lying on its back to facilitate fitting the lower part of the fascia, showing how that was clamped up while the glue set. The ply baseplate of the structure stabilises the outer frame and the cross-members which give shape and stability to the structure. Inside the end of the frame at the right-hand end you can see the apertures for the drawer runners which will support the fiddle yards at each end.

    Low Quay Yard fascia clamped up 01 - shows baseplate - copy for forum.jpeg

    The following photograph shows my board with lower fascia fitted and the drawer-runners extended; these are asymmetrical, the right hand ones being 500mm long and the left 450mm - this is to fit the space I have available when the layout is in situ.

    Low Quay Fiddle Yard runners - with lower fascia fitted + both sides extended 01 copy for forum.jpg

    Finally, to show the very real benefits of active co-operation, here is a portrait of the two baseboards, Paul's and mine, together, illustrating the similarities of the design and the differences in detail reflecting our respective track and scenic plans. (When this photograph was taken my board was still without its lower fascia.) Paul's is the one on the right, with the more immediately interesting profile cut in the fascia.

    Twin boards 03 - copy for forum.jpg

    Perhaps getting to this stage this counts as my first milestone,
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  15. simond

    simond Western Thunderer

    In these days of false news, I am much taken with the concept of "ficts" and their evident contrast with facts.

    Would that all news articles were so marked.

  16. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    But isn't this the BBC 1930's received pronunciation of "facts" :).
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  17. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    The icing on the cake would have to had the same track bed heights and being able to link boards with a fiddle yard section in between. A true end to end layout providing the track gauge was the same.
  18. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Thanks for your comments. The idea of a modular layout does hold appeal, but in this case Paul and I both felt it important to build a small, self-contained project that might realistically be completed as an individual achievement. Although we are modelling a broadly similar era, other ideas underlying our layouts differ quite fundamentally, and to some extent both designs incorporate long-held individual ambitions that are not necessarily compatible. In addition there are practical difficulties in that we are separated by a considerable distance, so the layouts could only rarely be brought together.
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  19. Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Thank you. Yes, I agree. If only there was a way to make it mandatory ...
  20. Threadmark: Low Quay Lighting Gantry
    Richard H

    Richard H Western Thunderer

    Wondering about lights for the layout and, not having used LEDs before, I decided to experiment. I jury-rigged a single 120cm row of LEDs on what will become a "lighting gantry" so that they cast an overall, even light from above the front of the layout. Although this used just a generic type of LED strip that I happened to have available, the LEDs are mounted without any attempt to direct or reflect the light, and the 'gantry' does not project beyond the fascia of the baseboard, the effect convinced me to use LED lights on my layout ...

    Low Quay Lights 201117 - reduced for forum.jpeg
    ... ready when you are, Mr. deMille!