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Posts Tagged ‘Canute Road Quay’

It has been just over a month since Canute Road Quay made its first proper public exhibition appearance at the excellent Exe Model Railway Society’s exhibition so I thought a little update might be in order.  It certainly made a change taking a layout to an exhibition where I could firstly see out of the rear window of the car and secondly, unload, be set up and operational within 20 mins of arriving at the venue. Fisherton Sarum takes up the whole of the rear of the estate car (seats down and floor to ceiling) and on average takes about an hour to set up!

With Simon at the controls, Canute Road Quay is closely inspected by visitors at the Exe MRS show last month.

One of the advantages of taking a layout to a show a distance away is the opportunity to see layouts that I do not usually get to see and also it’s a chance catch up with friends (some of whom even had a play) and acquaintances from the area that I don’t often get to meet up with and this show did not disappoint on either count.

My kit built ex LSWR Adams B4 0-4-0T shunts at the Quay.

From an operational perspective I was ably, and with thanks,  assisted for the weekend by friend and fellow modeller Simon Paley and we found that operating the layout on an hour on / hour off basis worked exceptionally well and kept the operational interest up on what at the end of the day is just a little shunting layout.

Two USA 0-6-0 tanks (No’s 64 and 72) meet in front of the Waterloo Arms public house and road crossing.

Also the operating position purposely located at the front left hand end enabled pleasant and easy interaction with the viewing public.  I was very pleased with the positive reaction and comments  from the visitors to the show, especially my little bit of cheating with perspective for the terraced houses on the backscene that can be read about here. I also picked a few more potential exhibition invites that I shall follow-up accordingly.

There are a few things still to complete on Canute Road Quay such as: adding proper interiors and lighting for the front two main buildings (which are not yet permanently fixed down so I can complete this activity), actually wiring up the street lamps so they work, finishing the gantry crane with its hook and pulley and some more weathering of the buildings especially on the roof lines as a result of the number of seagulls present!

The Adams B4 0-4-0T is still in use and not yet ousted by the USA 0-6-0Ts soon to rule the Quay.

Also since the exhibition I have taken the opportunity to take a few more snaps of Canute Road Quay, during a couple of running (play), which is one of the advantages of being a small layout that I am able have set up all the time at home.  Some of these quick snaps can be seen accompanying this post.

USA 0-6-0T shunts right on the edge of the Quay whilst the fireman “can see no ships”.

In my Lighting is Quay post I discussed the use of the LED strip lightning that I have deployed on Canute Road Quay although at home and for most of the time at the Exe MRS show the lighting was extremely effective there was at certain times of the day a shadow cast on the backscene of the front pelmet due to sunlight shining in through venues high level windows (I do not think it was really noticed by visitors to the show but I found it a little annoying at times from an overall presentation perspective). I have therefore fitted a second LED strip without any opaque strip of plastic in front to enable either of both LED strips to be switched on to give three different lighting levels to counter an effects of a venues ambient lighting.

In other news, I have been approached by two of the main model railway magazines to feature Canute Road Quay, in order to allow time between publication and ensure that different articles can be written I have accepted one of the approaches, give priority to the magazine whose lovely exclusive tank locomotives gave rise the initial idea of building the layout in the first place, so it shouldn’t take much to work out which magazine it will feature in first… The photoshoot has been arranged for September with the article hopefully appearing before the end of the year, so watch this space.

 

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This weekend sees the first proper exhibition outing of Canute Road Quay at the Exe Model Railway Society’s exhibition. Having made its successful debut at the RMweb annual South West Area Group members day in Taunton at the end of April. This was not really an exhibition as such but a gathering of like minded friends and modellers, so this weekends event is its first true public outing.

USA tank No 72 crosses the quayside access road

The Exeter MRS exhibition is being held at the The Matford Centre, Matford Park Road, Marsh Barton, Exeter, Devon EX2 8FD. Opening times are 10am to 5pm on Saturday and 10am to 4pm on Sunday.  By all accounts this is an excellent show so well worth attending, and I am very much looking forward to exhibiting, ably assisted for the weekend by friend and fellow modeller Simon Paley.

In addition to this weekends show, Canute Road Quay has now also been invited to attend the Risborough MRC Railex Exhibition next year on 26th /27th May 2018 at  Stoke Mandeville Stadium, Stadium Approach, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP21 9PP and also their smaller Risex Exhibition in February 2019!

 

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As I reported in my last update post here about Canute Road Quay it made is first semi public outing and a days running in anger so to speak at the RMweb annual South West Area Group members day in Taunton at the end of April. This is not really an exhibition as such but a gathering of like minded friends and modellers for a day of informal chat with some trains running at the same time.

Caunte Road Quay makes its debut at the RMWeb SWAG meet in April. Picture copyright and courtesy Ava Hay

The day proved to be a success from my perspective with Canute Road Quay operating as intended (I am as ‘happy as Larry’ shunting wagons around) during the day and the layout  being  well received with plenty of positive comments from those that stopped by for a look.
From a transportation and setting up perspective, being of course much smaller, it is much quicker and easier all round than taking Fisherton Sarum to shows. I also thank my friend and fellow modeller Simon Paley for helping me play trains during the day.

Shunting in action on Canute Road Quay. The vinyl cut lettering on the proscenium arch can be clearly seen. Picture copyright and courtesy Ava Hay

I certainly believe that when exhibiting layouts at shows,  presentation, just as with lighting that I discussed here,  is just as important and should be carefully considered.  Canute Road Quay’s overall presentaion is aided by the design of the Tim Horn baseframes with the proscenium arch giving a letter box style view. The whole board is supported on folding adjustable trestles which does allow a range of viewing heights to be chosen, although I will generally opt for the higher viewing position. As the trestles are wider than the 12″ of Canute Road Quay I have also cut a length of plywood to act as a shelf at the rear of the baseframe for the all important cup of tea and also spare stock etc.
Around the bottom edge of the baseframe I have glued a Velcro Strip to attach one of the curtains that I use on Fisherton Sarum to hide the trestles etc.   To match the curtains the outside faces of the baseframes have been roller painted matt black with Vinyl cut white lettering in Gills Sans, from vinylletteringonline for the Canute Road Quay name across the top of the proscenium arch.

A view of the simple compact fiddle yard of Canute Road Quay. Picture copyright and courtesy Ava Hay

I operate Canute Road Quay from the front of the layout, at obviously the left hand end as that is where the fiddle yard and control are located, as with Fisherton Sarum operating from the front allows for easy interaction and conversations with the public at shows and is very much part of the exhibition experience that I enjoy.

The observant amongst you might also have noticed the subtle change the exhibition side bar to the right of the page which has had a title change and includes the fact that off the back of its Taunton appearance Canute Road Quay has been invited to attend the excellent Exeter MRS exhibition at the The Matford Centre, Matford Park Road, Marsh Barton, Exeter, Devon EX2 8FD over the weekend of the 1st and 2nd July.

P.S. Are you fed up withe the ‘quay’ puns yet, I am kind of hoping so as I might be running out of them….

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Since my last post showing progress on Canute Road Quay, with respect to the concrete road area and inset trackwork along with making the grass ‘grow’  I have been busy completing the rest of the buildings and adding a mix of details.

The left hand front office building is yet to be affixed to the layout

The two main front buildings have been assembled from the excellent laser cut card components from LCut Creative these have now been initially painted and external details such as gutters and downpipes added from a mix of Peco LK-78 buifdings details pack and Wills SS46 Buildings Pack A. These buildings are not yet permanently affixed to the layout as I am still to add the internal details and also some lighting.

The main warehouse loading platform also has a representation of its underside wooden support beams. Photo taken before the gantry was fitted

I gave the LCut Creative buildings a coat of Humbrol grey acrylic primer prior to dry brush painting the brickwork using a pallet of  brick work colours from Precision Paints mixed with a little dirty black and also picked out slightly different brickwork such as the window brick arches a slightly lighter colour.

The gantry and A frame has been added to the right hand warehouse

The main warehouse loading platform has been made using Wills floorboard building sheets rather than the LCut Creative card items as I was making the platform quite long and the Wills plastic sheets are larger and stronger. This has been painted a weathered greyish brown colour.

To give access to the upper floor loading doors I have created a gantry hoist supported on the quayside by an ‘A’ Frame. The block and tackle / pulley would run on the smaller section ‘H’ girder mounted below the main cross girder, to either lift items to and from open wagons and or in theory the girder would be cantilevered over the quayside to lift items from moored vessels.

Another view of the warehouse and freelance gantry hoist

I have made this somewhat freelance design from scratch using two different sizes of brass ‘H’ section soldered together with some corner bracing details added from thin brass sheet embossed with a number of rivets.

The engine shed nestles in the roar corner of Canute Road Quay

The engine shed tucked away in the back right hand corner assembled from Skytrex Model Railways resin parts is now complete and suitably painted. The inside floor of the shed has been painted to represent a concrete floor and outside the shed a mix ash, using real ash from my wood burning stove, ballast and coal around the coaling platform, a Hornby Scaledale product,  have been glued in place using the usual method of diluted PVA glue. The water crane is a Kernow Model Centre commissioned SR style made by Bachmann Scenecraft.

USA tank No 72 crosses the quayside access road

A few people and black wing gulls have been suitably positioned around the layout from Langley Models, I have also used their etched drains and drain covers in suitable places. The SR barley twist post style gas lamps, from Gaugemaster, are yet to be wired in although the transformer, voltage regulator and input wiring is already place to do so.

The end of the right hand warehouse and loading platform

Other details items such as wooden crates, oil drums, sacks and fish crates have been added from cast plaster items from Ten Commandments suitably painted.

In my last post about Fisherton Sarum attending the Epsom and Ewell exhibition last weekend, Canute Road Quay makes its first almost public appearance this coming Sunday at an RMweb forum members event in Taunton. I would like to thank all those readers of this blog who came by Fisherton Sarum at the excellent Epsom and Ewell exhibition, it was good to speak to you all. On the whole from the layouts perspective the show went well despite a couple of electrical niggles, and I am looking forward to hopefully a good day with Canute Road Quay on Sunday.

An overall view of Canute Road Quay showing its curtrent state of progress

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This coming weekend, 22nd & 23rd April,  sees the annual Epsom and Ewell MRC exhibition and one of only a couple appearances of Fisherton Sarum this year.  The Epsom and Ewell Model Railway Club is I think one oldest model railway clubs around having been established in 1952. The exhibition is being held at their usual venue of the North East Surrey College of Technology (NESCOT), Reigate Road, Ewell, Surrey KT17 3DS . It is always good to be exhibiting in the heart of the Southern Railway’s territory.

I have taken some time out from building my latest little train set Canute Road Quay (which itself is making its first ‘public’ debut the following weekend, more of which in a future post next week) to set Fisherton Sarum up at the clubrooms of the High Wycombe and District MRS, for which I am most grateful to repair a couple of things such as the turntable and ensure that everything else is working OK.

Although missing the show my Dad will be attending in spirit and in model form as he and fellow school mates are captured trying to bunk the shed as he did in his school short wearing days

I will be ably assisted during the weekend by some regular operators and friends, although unfortunately my father will miss the show as he is recovering from recent emergency heart surgery (for which offer my sincere thanks to all the amazing staff involved within the NHS). I am pleased that he is well on the mend but rightly still convalescing, so get well soon Dad!

All boxed up and ready for loading. The green boxes resting on the top of the layout are the two lighting rig boxes. The control is nestled between the ‘L’Girders of the baseframe under the layout’s ‘Target’ style nameboard.

As with most layouts being exhibited some method of protection for transportation  is required and this is not normally seen by the general public at shows. Although when set up the Fisherton Sarum is 20 foot  long it was designed from the outset in such away that  everything included the stock boxes  (converted stout DJ cases designed for carrying up to 120 CDs) containing over 80 locomotives and some 20 coaches along with numerous wagons, will all fit in a Mondeo estate car!

An overview of the scenic section of Fisherton Sarum

My two scenic boards, each 4′ x 3′ are bolted together by wooden end frames to form a box just small enough to fit through though the tailgate of the car.  The layouts legs are bolted to the inside of baseboards  ‘L’ girders and therefore fold up inside the baseboards out of the way.  The whole box arrangement sits on a set of wheels for easy transportation from the car into and around the exhibition venue. As I use cassettes in the fiddle yards these boards are flat topped ‘paste table’ style  and the legs fold up held in place by clips and then these slide alongside the scenic board ‘box’ in the rear of the car.  Other items such as the end backscene pieces, lighting rig support struts and the control panel (whose width was designed specifically to do so) tuck between the ‘L’ girders of the upturned scenic board.

I hope this little insight into the behind the scenes aspect of exhibiting a layout has been of interest, if you are dropping by the exhibition next weekend, please make sure you say hello!  Fisherton Sarum is stand 25 at the show.

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Just like a good backscene; see my A view from the line post regarding Fisherton Sarum’s backscene here, or my Canute Road Quay backscene post here; another area that I think is vital for any model railway layout, especially if being exhibited, is good lighting. There are a number of reasons for this: firstly and the main reason, is of course to show of your modelling efforts and skills in the best light (pun intended) possible, and secondly due to the fact the ambient lighting at exhibition venues can be variable at best. One key area to bear in mind is the colour / warmth of the lighting that you provide, more of which below…

Over the years a number of methods have been used with mixed results, such as using a number of spot lamps, fluorescent tubes, a mixture of the two and more recently LED strips. I am generally not a fan of multiple spot lamps especially facing in different directions as they can give unrealistic multiple shadows. Note also that technically you plant bulbs but use lamps as a light source in a luminaire…

colour-temperatureThe colour of white, might sound odd but in fact it’s actually a thing, or rather the colour temperature is. This colour temperature is measured in Kelvin (K). The slightly unnatural yellowy orange tint of a classic tungsten lamp would be in the 2700K (warm white) range, with the light becoming colder and whiter and slightly more natural, up to around 6500K for a cold blue light and even more blue up to 10,000K.
Many of us find doing actual modelling or craft work under a daylight cool blue white lamp (the daylight lamp I use is around the 4000K mark) easier on the eye and also better for rendition of other colours under this artificial light, this especially useful when painting.
Therefore the lighting that we use on our layouts will also benefit from being at the more daylight blue and more natural end of the white temperature spectrum.

A split image showing lighting on Fisherton Sarum from the public’s view (top) and operator’s view (bottom)

A split image showing lighting on Fisherton Sarum from the public’s view (top) and operator’s view (bottom)

On Fisherton Sarum I use, mounted inside the overhead pelmet (painted white inside), two daylight / cool white range (6500K)  florescent tubes to give the overall and even illumination, with two additional spot daylight rated (approx 6000K) spot lamps to give additional illumination to the front corners of the layout specifically around the shed and houses areas (these are far enough apart and carefully angled to prevent any unwanted / unrealistic odd shadows).

Many modellers are now using LED lighting for layout lighting and usually via the increasingly widely available strips of surface mounted LEDs that you simply cut to length. They either come with a transformer and or a controller of some description. This is what I have chosen to use on Canute Road Quay. Just like lamps and fluorescent tubes these LED strips can be obtained in a variety of  white colour ranges usually: warm (between 2700-3200K), daylight (4000-4500K) and cool (5000-6200K).

A view from the inside of Canute Road Quay with the LED strip installed in the underside of the pelmet

A view from the inside of Canute Road Quay with the LED strip installed in the underside of the pelmet

I obtained a metre long, cool white, self adhesive LED strip, plug and play kit complete with plug mounted mains transformer from LED Hut this was inexpensive, already the correct length and very easy to fit. The kit came with a simple plug and socket connection to the lead from the transformer, which I have extended to enable me to mount the socket under the baseboard.
With the overcast greyish sky backscene and drab industrial colours I am using on Canute Road Quay I opted for cool white as the more yellowish warm white would conflict with the overall layout colouration and appear to be less natural.

The even lighting of the LED strip can be seen in this picture of Canute road Quay as it currently stands

This strip has given a very even natural looking light, that alone slightly too bright for what I will want if and when I exhibit Canute Road Quay, I have therefore now added added an opaque strip of plastic in front of the LEDs to reduce the brightness slightly.
Some of the more expensive LED strips on the market allow you to control both the brightness and colour range, which would also give rise to changing the lighting to represents different times of the day etc.  and I can see such effects being utilised more and more in the hobby.

 

 

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Following on from completing the basic ground and the inset concrete trackwork areas on Canute Road Quay as detailed on my post here, I have now in addition to adding some ballast in around the point work and also the headshunt,  started to add the next stage of the ground cover and colouration of the concrete inset track.

Earth and Static Grass areas

A vew of the backscene looking to the LH corner. the still to be completed ground cover is evident

Green Scenes texture paint has been used to give the base colour to the earth and concrete areas

Once I was happy with the air drying clay used to form the basic formation of the ground cover, I used earth coloured textured paint from Green Scenes to act as the base and have now applied a couple of initial layers of static grass.

Static grass uses fibres to represent individual blades and strands of grasses etc. that is applied via an applicator. The applicators are usually battery powered,  that charge the fibres with an electrical charge. The applicator is also connected to the layout, near to the area being applied via a lead either using a crocodile clip attached to one of the rails (as in this case on Canute Road Quay), or to a small nail temporary inserted locally into the scenery to provide the opposite charge. This results in the fibres when shaken out of the applicator standing up, just like grass, with they land on the thin layer of rapid drying conducting PVA style glue on the scenic area. I prefer to use the excellent static grass applicator and fibres from W W Secnics. Their ‘Pro Grass applicator is made in the UK is lightweight, powered by a 9V battery, an illuminated on-off switch and has interchangeable sieve heads to handle a range of fibre lengths from 2 to 12mm.

The initial couple of layers of static grass have been applied

The initial couple of layers of static grass have been applied

Static grass comes in multiple lengths, and colours ranging from springs to summer  / autumn more yellowish colours, the reason for this is that you build the grass up to achieve a realistic looking grass and varity of tines to suit the location and time of year you wish to represent. I find that a lot of the available fibres are often a far to bright green, which is one of the reasons why I like the fibres from W W Secnics and even then I then to use their more muted summer and autumn colours.

Looking the other way to show the grassed area between the loop tracks

Looking the other way to show the grassed area between the loop tracks

Now that I have stated with the initial build up of the grass I will add further layers, where appropriate and also additional textures using some Woodland Scenics materials in due course for further complete the scene and the effect that I am looking for. I will also add some discolouration / dirt / oil stains etc. on some the grass where it has grown up between the sleepers on the track itself.

Concrete Inset Track

The expansion joints have been added to the concrete inset track area

The expansion joints have been added to the concrete inset track area

The Inset track area, having been initially built up with layers of cork has now also been a coating of textured paint from Green Scenes this time their concrete colour.
For such a large area of concrete, in real life it would soon crack due to expansion and so in practice it would be laid as slabs with a bitumen based expansion joint between to allow for any movement of each slab.  I have therefore added such expansion joints to the concrete area in the foreground of the layout leading up to the dock edge. IN practice the distance between expansion joints is dictated bu the thickness of the concrete slab and in this instance I have gone with joints set at 15ft intervals which would be appropriate for slabs up to and around 8″ thick.

Another view of the concrete inset track area and the expansion joints

Another view of the concrete inset track area and the expansion joints

To create the impression of the joints I initially scribed the joint lines into the surface of the concrete with the edge of a small screwdriver blade before running a soft pencil down the scribed line to give the weathered grayish look to the jointing bitumen. Some of the joints towards the edges of the slabs, i.e. those areas not seeing much vehicular traffic, will also get some fine turf Woodland Scenic material added in due course as I further detail the scene.

The overall view of Canute Rod Quay as it current stands is below, more updates to follow soon…

crq_march2017_5

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