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, including a loco I built from a white metal kit for him, 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 (now dismantled) which sat 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 building 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.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Canal Lock Chamber, Lock Gates, etc..

Yesterday I took delivery of a set of lock chamber walls, lock gates, paddle gear, etc.


Both Jo and I are highly impressed with the detail and accuracy of the white metal pieces which make up the lock gates for a narrow lock, the paddle gear, both gate mounted and ground paddles, and even the collars for the top hinges of the gates, as well as the mooring bollards and rings. The accuracy of the ground paddle gear is extremely good, someone has done some very good research to produce these items. It is also interesting that the actual paddles and paddle gear are designed so that they can be modelled as either open or closed, by reducing excess rack length and the pole which joins the paddle with the rack gear. I am looking forward to assembling this all together to produce what will hopefully be a very accurate model of a narrow lock on Hadarford.



  1. Hi, love what you are doing with the model railway.

    This year one of my Christmas presents was "Modelling Ports and Inland Waterways", A Guide for Railway Modellers by David Wright published 2016 by The Crowood Press. ISBN 978-1-78500-167-3. It is a good little book and the author has researched his topic well.

    1. Many thanks for your comment, I have a long way to go before I can actually start the layout, lots to do beforehand.

  2. Great stuff, Glenda's Dad made her Mum an n gauge model railway complete with canal and boats.

    1. Thank you, I dabbled in N gauge years ago, 009 has the advantage of N gauge, in that radii are quite small, but being 00 scale the range of items available on the market is greater.