Class R Wagons – Now finished (SM32)

These wagons have taken me much more time to complete than expected, but I am now happy with them. They are now all loaded and the items on board are ready to look after the horses at the front. I have partially ‘tarped’ the fodder wagons, but the hay and water cans are open to the elements, but as the layout is based on ‘late summer’ this is no problem.








Photo’s not taken on 4000 yards – area 5

FLICKR Prototype Railway site launched

As from today I have put over 500 prototype photo’s on the below site – please have a good browse. If you want a copy of a specific photo, email me and I will send it free of charge, but please use for personal use only as they are copyright.

I have several hundreds more to add – all taken between 1978 to date





Taking Stock or What am I doing!

I think it is time to re-assess my modelling. I am nearly 70 years old and still making layouts at quite a rate.  I realise this can not go on for ever, but even now I have just built three more baseboards for projects I have ‘in mind’. Added to this I have two unfinished layouts and five that are currently ‘on the circuit’,  and it doesn’t stop there, I am still involved with three other layouts that have moved on to other homes.  That makes a total of thirteen layouts, built or building over the last three years.

I have to admit that Exhibiting is becoming more difficult due to lifting etc. and if it was not for some excellent support from my wife, son, Graham and Shaun, I would have given up some years ago. Having said that, making layouts is a compulsion that does not go away, perhaps obsession is a better word but whatever,  planning and making continues.

The following layouts are 95% complete, is a layout ever finished? and are all viewable on this site.

Sefton Yard           – O Gauge Shunting Yard —– 1955 – 1970 in various eras

Low Street             -OO Sleeper Depot ——firmly fixed 1955-60

Merlins Lane         – O Gauge DCC Sound Fuelling Point —–1964 -68

Morlock Heath       – O Gauge Engineers Yard — various eras 1970 to 1995

4000yds – Area5      -SM32  WW1 ——– 1916-18

The following are layouts made by myself, but now owned by others

Norton Wood           – OO 3rd Rail Station

Norfolk Coke and Tar  – O Small Steam Shed (originally Industrial)

Ashwell Moor           – O Gauge Fuelling Point (DC)

This brings us to the current batch of baseboards and the two unfinished layouts. All un-named at present.

O Gauge Loco Depot (transition) – Complete up to Electrics – about 50% Complete. I would like to run my Industrials as an alternative.

O Gauge Station Layout (transition+) – Complete up to Electrics – about 50% Complete. 1955 to 1970 various eras and areas.

OO Gauge Modern Station – Baseboard only —- 1985 onwards in various eras and areas

OO Gauge Steam Shed  – Baseboard only —— 1955-62  various Regions.

OO – Layout based on a Diesel Fuelling Point or American HO Shunting layout – decision still to be made.

Well that’s about it – I must be mad!

I will post all progress on this site as things proceed.


Graham’s Test Track

When I finished my test track Graham expressed an interest in having one himself. Due to being very busy at present I offered to do the basics for him.

This Test Plank differs from mine in having O, OO and N Gauge tracks, it has also been left to Graham to choose whether he uses DCC or DC control on the space provided.

The O and OO  tracks have magnets and templates for fitting and testing ‘Spratt and Winkle’ couplings to stock. All tracks can be fitted with clip on rolling roads as required.













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.