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Everything posted by Mayner

  1. Post 9/11 some of the American railroads including BNSF & AMTRAK encourage railfans to register with their citizens safety programmes to report suspicious activity https://pass.amtrak.com/index.aspx. Railfans sometimes use their cellphones to report trains with defective equipment to train control or the dispatcher using the railroads emergency phone number, I know of at least one instance where a freight trains were stopped because of a calls from a railfan reporting running gear defects that could potentially result in derailments, that would not be noticeable to the train crew or picked up by a hot box detector.
  2. Mayner

    barrow street

    Is the part burnt out van still at the end of the siding in the Boston Yard?
  3. Mayner

    Garden railway track maintenance

    I completed and tested the wye at Utah Junction today taking advantage of a couple of drydays! General view of wye, I need to look at how I will finish this area from a landscaping perspective as very little grows here being under the tree canopy. The Utah extension very tempting temporary buffer stop as I have basically used up all my track material and surplus timber! The east leg of the wye is basically laid with 12-18" offcuts of rail which gives me enough material to extend a spur on to a retaining wall at another station. I may turn this area into a patio with river pebble or bark ground cover as its a nice spot on a hot sunny day. Hopefully the extension will eventually meander over towards a coal or silver mine near the swing set some day, possibly through a raised bed with dwarf conifers and a few full sized citrus. Test train on the wye the neck is just long enough for a large loco and one freight car. The main purpose of the wye at this stage is for turning locos working over the 4% grade between the wye and the fiddle/staging yard in the garden shed. Due to the steep grade it is necessary with most trains either to use a helper locomotive or divide the train and "double the hill" to return a train to staging. Large locos like the K27s can manage 12-14 cars on the 2% grades on the main circuit 6-7 over the 4%, smaller locos like 2-8-0s & 4-6-0s struggle on the grade with 3 cars, the wye is an attempt to turn the grade into a feature of regular operation.
  4. Track was 1st laid on the Jackson County a little over 10 years ago on one section of line sleepers/ties had become bleached out with UV light and I was not happy with the alignment of the crossover from the main line to the loop/siding on this section of track. West Siding Switch at Ti Tree Flats, I need to think of a more appropriate South West Colorado name, the railway had a more New Zealand-Tasmanian character perhaps Arboles after the pencil pines after the cabbage tree in the background has died off? The main line was laid in AMS narrow gauge flexible track, with Sunset Valley switches as AMS narrow gauge switches were unavailable when I was building the railway. The crossover is being re-laid with No 6 switches to provide a better transition from curved to straight track and a more suitable crossing for the larger locomotives now being used. I also took the opportunity to replace the ties on the plain track with Sunset Valley tie strip which appears to have a better UV resistance. The re-lay also provided an opportunity to inspect the treated timber road base after 10 years use and replace decayed timbers where necessary. The railway is basically supported on an open grid baseboard of 4X2 treated pine on 4X4 timber piles. The framework was overlaid with 25mm welded mesh and weed mat to support the washed pebble ground cover. I replaced two short sections of track base that were showing evidence of decay and extended the siding trackbase as I moved the East Siding Switch eastwards to compensate for the longer No6 switches at the west end of the yard. Track re-laying is similar to a traditional full sized track renewal programme, with rail recovered from this area used to complete Wye track in distance and usable sleepers/ties stored for use in patch repairs of remaining AMS track. Track now re-laid and ready for traffic. Interestingly although bleached out the AMS ties in this area appear to be in good condition with no evidence of deterioration (cracking or spalling off) around the rail fixing. It was necessary to replace tie strips on AMS track on another area of the layout when rail fixings started failing and gauge spreading occurred 5-6 years after track was first laid. 1:4 ESS I am planning to replace this with a 1:6 switch and have installed the switch with a short make up piece to avoid having to cut the next track panel at a later date. There was a saying that O Gauge modellers carried minerals for profit and paid the shareholders dividends. Not sure how carrying track material and tools fits in 🙂 It looks like the railway in this area should be good for at least another 10 years considering the condition of the baseboard timber and tie life. Oddly enough this thread does fit in with an Irish Railway modelling context clearing a lot of shelf/baseboard space to make a home for an Irish 4mm layout
  5. Mayner

    Ballymena & Larne #6, #106

    The vacuum on Irish & British steam locomotives was created by an "ejector" part of the drivers brake valve, that used steam to suck the air out of the brake system to create & maintain a vacuum. Generally on vacuum fitted locos there is an external pipe to exhaust steam from the ejector in the cab to the smokebox. The ejector pipework may be on the opposite side of 106 to the photograph. http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r143.html
  6. Mayner

    Ballymena & Larne #6, #106

    Possibly a reservoir and piping in connection with the automatic vacuum braking system. The BNCR most likely fitted the locos with automatic vacuum brakes and enclosed cabs after the takeover of the Ballymena & Lane railway. The Bachmann Big Haulier chassis is reasonably priced for G Gauge and extremely useful for scratchbuilding, will you be using track or on board battery power?
  7. Mayner

    Garden railway track maintenance

    Certainly working in the large scales outdoors brings on a lot of challenges not faced in-doors in N or OO like U.V. damage to plastic sleepers and designing a suitable track support system to cope with weather and soil conditions. Its been raining more or less continuously for the past 4-5 weeks, so took advantage of a couple of dryish afternoons to carry out track maintenance/renewals and install the east leg of the wye track. 1st the easy bit renovating the turnout form the main line to the east leg of the wye. Basically replacing the head blocks (long sleepers which support the switch stand or turnout machine), connect up and adjust the switch stand & fit the rail joiners or fish plates. I reversed the head block when I originally installed the turnout as it was originally part of a crossover and would have been in the 6' between the running lines not a very safe place. Switch stands are still used in the United States and this part of the world on turnouts that are not interlocked with the signal system, on running lines switch stands are locked by padlock with master key held by train crews and maintenaners. The action of the Sunset Valley switch stand is similar to the real thing with a locking bar, one of the jobs was to repair the indicator as children and un familiar operators often try to change the switch by twisting the indicator. Good indication of the type of tools necessary for trackwork, it was necessary to replace one of the slide plates under the blades, the rails & soleplates were spiked to the head blocks, soleplates then soldered to the stock rails. East leg of the wye and switch temporarily pinned in place to work out the best position for the turnout. The connection is on the inside of a curve of approx 8' radius, the wye track curves away on a minium 5' radius. Rails on main line cut in situ with a junior hacksaw (with a new blade) and turnout plated in place. The ties on the AMS track appear to be in good condition on this partially shaded section despite 120 years use, 2004 date of manufacture moulded on tie bases. I will add a tapered timber on the inside of the turnout and trellis strip to act as a ballast support on the inside of the turnout. 464 tests connection. Switch installed and ready for traffic. The mould on the switch is quite noticable it was originally installed in on a section of the railway which gets very little sunlight in winter as a result of recent tree growth. Due to the greater momentum and mass finely detailed large scale models are probably more suceptible than small scale or more basic models. Soldered joints failed on caboose balcony, used combination of Micro-mark and Tamiya clamps to hold everything in steady while I re-soldered joints, once primed I will finish with an "Appliance White" aerosol and seal with a clear sealer
  8. Mayner

    Small production run of MGWR 6 wheel thirds

    The Worsley Works and Comet follow similar design principals. Building Coaches the Comet way gives a good idea of what's involved in assembling a coach from Worsley Works parts https://www.wizardmodels.ltd/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/bctcw.pdf my article on the Worsley Works website covers some of the challenges in assembling their Park Royal & Laminate coaches http://www.worsleyworks.co.uk/NG/NG_NIL_Art1.htm. A prospective buyer would need to allow another £10-20 plus per coach to cover the cost of wheels, bearings, castings, seats, door and pull handles, plasticard for partitions and floor and glazing plus couplers of choice. Wizard Models & Markits probably the best choice for OO wheels and bearings, brass wire, Dart Castings/MJT for whitemetal castings.
  9. Mayner

    Small production run of MGWR 6 wheel thirds

    The Worsley Works kits basically include underframe (floor, solebars, bufferbeams), sides and end etches with the builder to provide wheels, bogies, roof, detail castings, partitions, seating. I understand that the GSWR 6 wheeler kits include a roof and a basic Clermiston underframe (axleguards with a pivot arrangement to go round curves). Roof and tumbledown curves have to be formed as the parts are supplied flat, solder assembly is necessary as there is no provision for glue together slot and tab assembly. On the plus side some MGWR castings are available through Dart Castings (my patterns) no suitable spring casting is currently available for the MGWR 6w coaches. Some MGWR coaches are on the JM Design long term wish list(I need the coaches for my own layout) including 6w 3, lavatory 2nd, brake 3rd and TPO.
  10. Mayner

    Paint fading - model weathering

    T The re-painting of the servicable B101 Class locos may have been carried out to control/limit water damage to the electrical and control equipment as body corrosion appears to have become a significant problem with the class by the mid 1970s. The class no doubt got the Supertrain treatment as they were classed as main line locos rather than shunting locomotives. The most striking thing was the great variety in the shade of orange between individual locos on the sound bank, some had faded to something like a hot pink, while very little fading was noticable on locos that were placed late on the bank like 103 & 106 the last of the Irish BRCW Sulzers in service B106 worked a Sulzer Farewell special from Connolly to Bray and back in February 1978, the loco was withdrawn from service shortly afterwards when it failed as a result of a minor electrical fault while making up a transfer goods at the North Wall.
  11. Mayner

    Paint fading - model weathering

    Interestingly the "golden brown" on the B101s on the sound barrier that had received a repaint in Supertrain livery faded more than the locos that remained in black and tan. By the late 70s was quite a variation in fading between loco on the sound bank, with the all black and black & tan Sulzers in the best cosmetic condition. It was surprising that the majority of the B101s were re-painted into the Supertrain colours, they were pretty much restricted to goods, p.w. work and the weed killer following the re-powering of the Metrovicks by the early 1970s. CIE appears to have considered re-powering the B101s with GM power units, but this was rejected in favour of purchasing the 071s. Apparently body corrosion and the need to re-bogie the locos to a Co Co arrangement (probably to provide similar power output to a remotored A Class) seem to have been deciding factors not to re-power the class. Although B106 appears to have received an overhaul, its possible CIE carried out the minimum work necessary (incl a low spec reapaint) to keep the Class in operation through a short term loco shortage following a work to rule at Inchacore Works in the early 70s. At least two B101s were laid up following fire damage/mechanical problems in the late 1960s. CIE overhauled one of the Inchacore Sulzers and its remaining BUT railcar set around the same time, but they never re-entered service
  12. Mayner

    Bantry Town Station 1950's

    West Cork brings back memories of family holidays as a teenager and there seldom seemed to be a wet day, but Wales is another story 🙄 I will never forget my 1st Summer holiday in North Wales in 1980, I arrived at Blaenau Ffestiniog Old Station http://www.2d53.co.uk/blaenauffestiniog/Old Station.htm intending to catch the bus to the temporary Festiniog terminus at Tanygrisiau https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tanygrisiau_departure_ME.jpg nothing I had experienced in the West Cork could have prepared me for Blaenau on a wet day. Spent a lot of time in the area down the years but never experienced that sheer intensity of rain on that 1st day. The rest of the week was dry and sunny exploring the narrow gauge lines by train the highlight at the time was a journey on the Welshpool which appeared to have more in common with the Irish than Welsh narrow gauge lines, the train along the Cambrian main line was in a smartly turned out 3 car cross country DMU with curtains on the windows in contrast to the rather spartan 2 cars sets used on the Coast and Conway Valley lines. T
  13. Mayner

    Fiddle Yard

    There are several different options for a fiddle/staging yard, a lot depends on the available space and how you want to operate your railway. The most important consideration is that storage tracks should be long enough to store your longest train. Three yard tracks are usually considered to be a minimum though four are better. While a ladder fiddle yard is easiest to construct a traverser or a cassette fiddle yard may be a better option in your case due to the restricted space available. Steves Page on Fiddle Yard design covers the main types https://rail.felgall.com/fyd.htm They basically break down into: 1. Ladder with points. These are simplest to construct but consume a lot of space. When I have space I generally build this form of fiddle yard. 2. Traverser where the fiddle yard physically slides to align with the approach tracks. I am building a 1.2m long 5 track traverser for my Irish Broad Gauge layout using an 18mm ply deck on kitchen drawer runners 3. Sector plate where the fiddle yard is pivoted at one end. The MRSI Loughrea layout had a sector plate fiddle yard with a turntable loco release. The table deck was in ply which pivoted on a turned bolt, track alignment/power was achieved with small barrel bolts. Operated reliably at exhibitions in Ireland and the UK for approx 15 years. 4. Turntable. Like the fiddle yards on David Holmans Arigna Town & Clogher Valley layouts. 5. Cassette fiddle yards: Where the yard is constructed in removable sections long enough for an individual loco or a complete train
  14. Mayner

    portwood junction a new dawn

    If you have the space Portadown would be terrific both from a watching trains go by and serious operating perspective, especially if you have room for a working junction with the Derry Road and Armagh-Clones line. Its an ambitious project that would take several years to complete in OO with RTR locos and a lot longer if you go down the finescale route with kit and scratchbuilt locos and stock in 21mm gauge
  15. Mayner

    Studio scale models worth it??

    A bit like the story of the blind man looking for a black cat in a dark room, I recently had the experience of trying to find a holiday cottage on the side of a mountain in Wales without satnav or cell phone coverage, to compound things the post code for the property/district was incorrect. We solved the problem by asking for directions at a nearby farm house.😊. I did get to see and ride on some narrow gauge trains though and re-explore the area after 15 years.
  16. Picked this up on RM Web sudden Chinese factory closure affecting supply of Atlas locos and rolling stock https://shop.atlasrr.com/b-atlas-rolling-stock-and-locomotive-factory-closure.aspx combined with rumours on US news groups of Hornby shifting production to Hungary. Apparently Intermountain and Trainworx also affected Apparently the factory closed as a result of the owners ill health .
  17. Mayner

    IRM Fert Wagon

    Its possible that some of bogie fertiliser wagons entered service with mesh doors and were subsequently retro fitted with ply doors. It might be worth trawling through IRRS Journals from the era for photos and information. The bogie wagons were initially nicknamed "Long Kesh wagons" by railway men, on account of the mesh doors, to distinguish them from the existing "Back to Back" fertiliser trains made up of 4w flats with open containers.
  18. Mayner

    Studio scale models worth it??

    An etched or whitemetal kit is seldom a write off. Brass & whitemetal kits are very forgiving and poorly assembled kits can be improved as a modeller gains experience and develops skills. Quite a few modellers in the UK dismantle and re-build poorly assembled kits bought at swap meets and on e-bay. My first efforts with brass kits 25-30 years ago were frankly rough, but have been improved and upgraded over time my first locos the MGWR Tank and J15 are still going strong with original gears, wheels and motor after 30 years & one rebuild/repaint.
  19. Mayner

    IRM Fert Wagon

    Working doors, forklift (battery rc)and choice of pallets with 50kg bags or 50okg bulk bags🙂?
  20. Mayner

    IRM Fert Wagon

    The bogie fertiliser wagons were originally rated at 40 ton capacity and appear to have been uprated to 48tons at some stage during the IE era. Would be interesting to find out whether the product was getting denser, additional pallets were being loaded, or simply the capacity was increased by 8 tons to reflect what was actually being loaded. Fertiliser traffic started to run down during the 1990s one possibly two rakes of fertiliser wagons were converted into 42'9" container flats by 1996-97. Due to load limits on the steeply graded New-Ross branch laden fertiliser trains from Albatros Fertilisers were worked in two trips to Waterford before being combined into one train for the journey to the final destination,.
  21. Mayner

    barrow street

    Think there are/were similar murals (including a steam train) on the flats near where the North Strand Rd crosses over the Royal Canal and railway.
  22. Mayner

    Studio scale models worth it??

    As a kit builder (& manufacturer) and some time scratch builder I believe that SSM/TMD kits are certainly worth it in terms of ease of build and satisfaction with the end product and I personally find it easier to build a kit or scratchbuild a model than attempt to kitbash a rtr model into something else. It depends pretty much on personal preferences some modelers are content to kit bash rtr models into a caricature of an Irish model which looks reasonable from a distance, others prefer to build a model that's closer to the prototype. De Selby (Alan Edgar) RM Web threads on kit and scratchbuilding GNR & NCC locos will give you an idea of what can be achieved with this approach. http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/98951-gnr-ireland-vs-class-4-4-0-a-skritchbuild-in-4mm/. The GNR has a great advantage over other Irish railways in that the majority of the steam classes that ran on the main lines and on secondary services, a lot of coaching and wagon stock is available in kit form from SSM & Worsley Works and the OO Works locos & Provincial wagons are a quick way of getting started if you work in OO. The kits can be assembled to run in OO or 21mm if you are up to the challenge, building 4-4-0 & 4-4-2T locomotives to run round small radius curves can be challenging and best avoided for the sake of realism. A coach is probably a better option than a loco or even the GNR goods brake for a 1st build in brass as they are basically designed to bolt together with the minimum amount of soldering.
  23. Mayner

    Layout Plans

    There is more than one way to skin a cat, the Dapol Stanier coaches are reasonably priced and passable "layout coach" that would pass for steel sided UTA or CIE Bredin stock, while you are looking for something a bit more accurate , these coaches were originally manufactured by Airfix and GMR during the late 70s early 80s. Different modelers have produced reasonably convincing GNR coaches using different techniques, Colm Flanagan http://www.worsleyworks.co.uk/Image-Pages/Image_4mm_GNR-I-K15.htm has produced convincing UTA & GNR coaches with Worsley Works sides on Airfix/GMR/Dapol Stanier coach bodies for his own layout and the Bleach Green layout, Kirley has used a combination of plastic & brass body shells http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/93496-kirleys-workbench/page-3, Glover has converted old Triang Hornby stock into reasonably convincing GNR k15s and CIE Laminates for his Pettigo layout
  24. Mayner

    Locomotive Springs

    Hi Ken Send me a P.M. should be able to sort you out with both types. John
  25. Mayner

    Scale "0" Gauge

    Pioneering Irish modellers like Cyril Fry & Drew Donaldson did not get too hung up in the correct scale gauge ratio. The effect of modelling Irish Broad Gauge in 7mm on 32mm gauge track is not as noticeable as in OO, as British O gauge is reasonably close to standard gauge while OO is considerably under gauge. The original C J Fry's Irish International Railway & Tramway was an International system with Irish and Continental models sharing the same tracks. Going back to JHBs original query, does anyone remember the working Dublin & Blessington diorama that was in the Dublin Tourism O'Connell Street office in the 1990s? The layout was a simple oval with a street scene probably based on Tallagh with a D&BST double cabbed steam loco and a double decker tramcar.

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