Building Wrenton - Page 13

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September 2017

Keeping it clean


baseboard cover in place
This is not very pretty! Wrenton under wraps.

For a long while I covered the layout with black bin liners. This kept the dust off and the light out. I think the latter is as important as the former. With lots of home printed textures on the buildings I didn't want them fading too soon. As a precaution I always use the printer manufacturer's own inks - considerably more expensive but much more likely to resist fading.

The liners worked fine, but there was always the risk that they might catch on something fragile when placing or removing them. So I made up this cover using 5mm foamboard.

channels construction
To support the side panels I added some strips of 3mm mdf to the sides of the baseboard to form a channel into which the panels would sit. I also wanted to support strips of acrylic glazing which would stand about 2" above scenery level to protect vulnerable parts at the front of the baseboard from visitors leaning across the layout to point out details of the cottages. I've had to replace the tops of the station lamps a few too many times!

I cut three lengths of mdf for each front face of the baseboards. One was 1Ĺ" wide, the second was 3Ĺ" and the third 4".

The cross section drawing shows how I fitted them to the baseboard.

The deepest channel takes the glazing. To add the cover uprights the glazing is removed and the foamboard sits in the wider, shallow channel at the top.

cover channels
The covering foamboard pieces have narrow strips of foamboard added front and back to form channels.

These locate the boards over the front foamboard panels and the backscene.

cover on backscene



It only takes a couple of minutes to remove the cover and drop in the Liteglaze glazing:


glazing in place


So hopefully Wrenton is now protected from dust, light and fat bellies! While I had the camera at that corner of the layout I took a couple of extra pictures:

4MT heads north


4MT meets B1


Extending the fiddle yard


fiddle yard extended
Iíve added some short extra sidings to the fiddle yard. Iíve finally assembled the turntable kit which has been sitting in a box for several years. Not sure if it will stay, but time will tell.

I had to add some extra wiring to enable access to the new sidings. At the ends of each of the main storage roads Iíve got short isolated sections the power to which is fed through auxiliary switches on all the Cobalt motors involved in setting the required route. For example, in order to power the section at this end of road 10 the three way point nearest the camera has to be set to the left route, likewise the second three-way. Finally the point just beyond the black box has to be set to the curved route.

fiddle yard extended
In order to get into the two sidings leading to the turntable that point beyond the black box obviously has to be set to the straight route and that cuts the power to the isolated section at the end of road 10. So one of the two push-to-make switches in the black box briefly powers it. The other button similarly powers the end section of road 1.





There are similar sidings at the other end of the layout. Thereís no room for a tripod or lights at this end, so itís a hand held available light shot.

Some more photos


Here are a few more photos of the layout. First Flying Scotsman passes by, in LNER livery and with a train of Gresley Teaks...

Flying Scotsman heading south


Flying Scotsman heading south


...and is followed by City of London.

City of London heading south


It was a chilly, misty, autumn morning as our intrepid photographer ventured forth with his trusty Nikon S-2. He hadn't loaded it with his usual Kodachrome, instead choosing the much faster, monochrome, Ilford HPS. He was rewarded with this shot of a J39 leaving the station with a short train.

misty morning


Adding loads to the mineral wagons


making coal loads
I cut rectangles of black 20 thou plastikard using the Silhouette cutter. I added some extra layers of 20thou to build up the centre of the upper side. The supports on the under side were cut from 40thou. Real coal (Peco, fine grade) was glued on with WS Scenic Glue.

The Midland 4F hauls a train of mineral wagons fitted with the new loads. There's real coal in the loco's tender, too.

coal train


coal train


Re-arranging the railway room


More than three years ago I planned the construction of the baseboard to allow a bed and some bedside cabinets to be stored underneath it. To keep access to the wiring and point motors I've thus far kept the bed crosswise under the baseboard but now I've turned it and added the cabinets, back to back, creating more space in the room and around the layout.

re-arranged room


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