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Glenatra Junction

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Hi folks, I’m recently after getting my interest in the hobby back after a few years. Currently in the early stages of planning a layout. I'm looking at a “what if” scenario along the south coast of Cork, so it’ll show a very heavy GSR influence and likely some aspects of the CBSCR.  

I previously had a plan for a layout called Gortalainn Junction (hence my username), but after learning a few new techniques and skills I’m hoping to expand on that plan. I’m thinking of a half hidden “roundy roundy” loop centred around a large station with a goods yard on an upper layer, moving down with what will (hopefully) be a subtle transition to a fishing village on a rural branchline and a hidden set of sidings on the lower layer. That should allow for some interesting passenger and freight movements.

While I’ll mainly be basing it around a 50s-80s/90s timeline, I won’t be sticking too tightly to any rules/prototypical running with it, so rivet counters can make road 😉 Don’t be surprised to see a modern IR liveried 201 next to a J15 at some point, I’m only looking to have a bit of fun with this plan, so if it interests me it fits in my view. I will welcome any tips/constructive criticism though, especially with signalling and track layout.   

Most aspects of the layout will be scratch built, as I am running on a very tight budget. I’ve attached a very rough MS Paint sketch of what I’m thinking to give an idea, it’s by no means to scale, just designed to point me in the right direction. It won't be winning any beauty contests but it does the job! I started out with AnyRail but hit the free version’s limit of 50 pieces…

Place names are all fictional and are designed to poke fun at the anglicisation of them – Irish PME here! 😛

Edited by Gortalainn
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17 hours ago, derek said:

lLooks like a lot going on there. What is the overall size of the proposed layout? Good luck with it

Thanks Derek. I'm working with a roughly 8x12ft space total, so I'm limited in terms of length. I'll probably have to run shorter than prototypical rakes when it comes to the longer stock - time will tell! I'm out of the country for a while so I won't be able to look into proper measurements until I'm back

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  • 1 month later...

No progress on the layout unfortunately, as I'm still out of the country. I did manage to get a start on some signage in the meantime - I've attached some examples of station boards as well as some road signage made to specification using the 1962 Signs Regulations. I'm not quite sure about the scaling of the station signs, so if ye have any advice please do let me know! The biggest sign is the one with the Killarney Junction logos, being 4.5cm long x 1cm high


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1 hour ago, jhb171achill said:

I like those road signs! Very well done. Do you print them on card?

@jhb171achill Cheers! That's the plan, I'm thinking I'll print them on 300gsm and stick two together to make them double sided. That should get them roughly to the right width

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14 hours ago, Metrovik said:

Not my area as my own thread will show, but it all looks very smart regardless of whether it's correct.

Thanks @Metrovik. Threw them together using a photo from the cabin in Rosslare strand, photoshop is a very powerful tool! 😛

5 hours ago, David Holman said:

Looks ok to me.

Excellent, cheers David. 

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Still only Photoshop work to show - I'm hoping to have some actual progress to show around the end of the summer.


As I'm planning to scratch build my signals, I drew up some arms for the semaphores and faces for the shunt signals. Here's where I took some creative liberties regarding the era I'm modelling, I've always been a fan of the dayglo arms so I went for the more modern system. I put some dwarf signals in there too, but I couldn't find out anywhere if they were used on the Irish network at all... If not, what was used in their place?

I used to have a bit of a knack for poster making so I threw one together to see if I still have it, but it looks like I'm a bit out of practice... I added a filter to give it some age (whereas in reality it was more so to hide my mistakes) and plan to have it hung up in a corner of a station to act as a forgotten relic of sorts.


see the sea cie.png

Dwarf signal.png

Shunt signal.png

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Got a few more signs finished. I'm hoping they'll be able to give more context to the location of the layout and how it ties together once they're in place. The freight depot sign is based off the one at the entrance to the depot in Mallow, I've attached a screenshot from Google Maps (2009 imagery) for anyone interested.
Let me know if ye want any signs for your own layouts by the way, I'd be more than happy to put some together!




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