16T Mineral Wagons in O Gauge


I have now made a start on weathering a rake of about twenty 16T mineral wagons. They are all Lionheart/Dapol and as such will need to be ‘loaded’ as the interior door detail is lacking.

The wagons include fitted and non fitted and will have a variety of weathering from virtually clean to quite rusty.  Below are the first five variations.

I mainly used a stippling method and added a small amount of talcum powder to create a little texture. I used five different ‘rusty’ colours – mostly Railmatch.











O Gauge VAA and OAA

Here we have two air braked, Railfreight liveried Speedlink wagons. Both were purchased at bargain prices by Graham from Hatton’s recent Heljan sale.  They are destined to run on Morlock Heath in our later era.

On arrival Graham commented that the red part of the livery was very loud and could I tone it down a bit! I like a challenge and decided that I could certainly do this task. I decided to spray the whole of the wagon sides and ends with a mix of 95% Matt Varnish and 5% Matt White. I sprayed very light coats until I got the required results, I then left the wagons for three days to thoroughly dry.

After the wagons were dry, I did my usual ‘shadowing’ by used a black wash and then wiping the bulk of the wash off. I stippled the roof dark grey on the VAA with a piece of foam and then sprayed the underframes with Frame Dirt, Brake Dust and Matt Black, Finally I picked out the springs and brake clasps with Dark Rust.









SM32 WW1 Layout All track now done.

After the arrival of the final piece of track and the two buffer stops this morning, all track laying is now complete.

The decision has been made to go DCC sound on all Loco’s and to also have a background sound system with the sound of a distant battle. We believe that the sounds are available and will start to progress a supplier.

We still need to sort out a coupling system and the entry to the sector plate scenic cover.

The ballast, I say that very loosely, has been obtained from the War Gaming World and expensive it was! Effectively ballast was not used and it was mainly stone and earth.





Work on this layout will slow down a bit now as I have fallen behind with O and OO amendments to existing layouts that appear at Exhibitions later this year. However, we have set a target date for the finished layout of 1/4/19 —- silly fools!



SM 32 – WW1 Layout Busy Weekend

Since Graham’s visit on Friday, I have worked about 15 hours on the layout. In the order I did the jobs:-

1/ Added the joiners/alignment dowels between the two boards

2/ Glued and aligned the three tracks over the two boards

3/ Added the back scene boards on the rear and sides of the two boards

Sadly I was one track panel short, but on the photo’s I have placed grey blocks so that you can see the final lengths of the sidings. I also glued one buffer stop to the nearest track. Two more buffers and one track section to order. I have also ordered five tubs of ‘Army Dirt and Small Stones’, this will be used for ballasting, this is a war-gaming product, but looks ideal for the layout.

While I was track laying I checked the total track length, I calculated we can get about fifteen bogie wagons comfortably on the layout, this doubles if four-wheel wagons are used. In practice it will be a mixture of the two types.

The entry to the fiddle yard sector plates back-board is still to be planned, it could end up being a small bridge, an overhead pipeline or even a large brick wall.








The final three photo’s are for Graham in Australia who wanted a close up of the parts of the sector plate.






SM 32 WW1 Layout – track plan

Graham came to see me Friday to discuss the track plan, clearances and general scenic thoughts. He also brought along his newly purchased ‘Tin Turtle’, although only partly built is gave us thoughts on the general requirements to run such a loco. Graham also brought the finished WD Bogie wagon, mainly to test clearances, but also to work out how many wagons are needed to populate the layout.

Below are a few photo’s taken during our deliberations.IMG_5797 IMG_5792






The Figures are Bachmann – We are using WDLR Album by Roy C. Link as our ‘Bible’ on the subject we are hoping to model – seen in the background of a couple of photo’s.

Over the weekend I hope to lay all the track and add the back scene. Sadly I think I will be one track length short! We also went for our pointless option so I have a Peco SM 32 ‘Y’ point spare – I will put it on my ‘for sale’ option on this website

Baseboards for SM32 Layout

I have now finished the baseboards for our WW1 SM32 Layout. It has lengthened a bit from the proposed size, in fact it has grown from 7′ x 18″ to now being 11′ x 18″.

It is now two baseboards, one is 6′ long and the other 5′ long, including the sector plate.

I would emphasis that this is not a ‘trench railway’, but a behind the lines narrow gauge railway, just beyond the range of the German Guns.

Both Boards are lightweight Laser Cut Baseboards.

Below are some photos of the finished boards – track laying next. The track has been obtained and we now have four wagons and a ‘tin turtle’ petrol locomotive.

We have a couple of ideas for the track plan, one with and one without a point. A bit of trial and error game to follow.

The Wagons, Loco’s etc. proved no problem to obtain, but I am struggling to get suitable G Scale WW1 figures, the only purchase so far being the Bachmann offering – any advice gratefully accepted. And yes, I am definitely out of my comfort zone – but this project is different and ‘not another diesel depot’.








I hope to do at least a monthly update on this project.