From when my Parents gave me my first train set for a Christmas present as a child, I have had an interest in model railways. I originally started in "OO" gauge, but have also built in "N" and "O" gauge. The last layout I built was my exhibition layout "Holmehurst" which was in "O" gauge, and I exhibited it around the country. Photos of it can be seen by following this link.

I inherited some "OO9" rolling stock from my late father, and ever since living on our working narrowboat Hadar I have been thinking about building a "OO9" layout.

For those who do not know, "OO9" is "OO" scale, which is 4mm to 1ft, but the track and rolling stock are narrow gauge, equivalent to 2ft gauge in real life. Modelling-wise this means that I can used standard "OO" scale buildings, people, scenery etc. of which there is a far greater range of ready built items and kits to choose from, but it has the advantage that the reduced size of the track and rolling stock means that curves can be tighter than for standard gauge, without losing a realistic look within a restricted layout size.

I had thought about building a layout in our garden alongside our mooring at the Saltisford Canal Centre, but after much thought decided that this would not be practical. However I built a small layout which sits on the shelf above the display cabinet, in our saloon, which houses my "O" gauge rolling stock. Having finished it, my wife Jo suggested that when we stop selling coal I could build a layout in the hold. As we stopped selling coal at the end of 2016, I am now planning the layout. This will be an ongoing record of the building of this layout.

Please feel free to leave comments, I am always interested in suggestions or questions.

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Hadarford Station

Some more buildings arrived this morning, 2 station buildings. However I may not use them both on the station, I will decide once I start building. I can always use one of them as a house in the village.

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I am also having a rethink on the design of the layout. I am reconsidering the long underground loop of railway track, which has no benefit to the layout, in fact it complicates it by needing under-baseboard access to it, it will use a lot of track which costs a lot of money, and it takes up a lot of valuable building space at both the front and rear of the layout. Space will become available also by being able to move the rail track and canal back to towards the rear of the layout, giving me more space at the front of the layout for these new station buildings. So I am thinking of removing this loop and just having a single track passing once through the layout.

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Basically the track crossing across the hold on the right will now curve immediately onto the track along the front of the layout. The hill on the right was raised up to go over the railway tracks, and I needed 2 canal locks to achieve the height to get the canal over the hidden tracks, This hill will not need to be as high, and thus I will only now have 1 canal lock, where the top lock is. By removing the 2 tracks of the loop at the rear of the layout, I will now have more space for the station at the the front of the layout, and building of the village at the rear of the layout. I should also be able to make the farm area on the left of the layout larger because removing one of the locks and the pound in between the 2 locks will shift the quayside to the right and the canal can be shortened accordingly by the length of 1 lock and the pound, and leaving at the rear of the layout earlier. I will now have to make model version No. 5, and post it on here once completed, which will make it easier to understand these changes.

Keith.

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