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A progress report from Orchard Wharf

Posted by on in Orchard Wharf
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The last few months saw a move away from progress on the layout itself because we needed to concentrate on building the transport boxes for the layout. These not only allow the boards to be carried and stored, but when they’re unpacked they form the supports too. So without them we couldn’t actually assemble the layout in its intended form. We started on the boxes in the Autumn, but then had to pack everything up because the room in which the layout is kept was to be repainted and rewired. This was done in December and the space is greatly improved by it.

Now we’re basically done on our storage and supports, we will be moving back to conventional model railway tasks.

 

Here’s a selection:

Electronics. The layout will be controlled electronically using the MERG CBus system. We’re finalising the specification, testing sample modules, and considering the best specification for interconnects, power supply location, control panels, and other items. Our in-house electronic uncoupler circuit is being evaluated.

Scenery. There is still work to be done to select the buildings we use to conceal our traverser-based fiddle yards. Along the front of the layout we have additional scenic boards to build, depicting the wharf itself, and we intend to build a small fleet of the characteristic Thames lighters used to transport goods to and from ships.

Track. Seven turnouts need building in bullhead track. The quayside track is still in progress. Our fiddle yards will use brass strip rail (an established technique at The MRC), and these are yet to be tackled. So basically the bulk of the work still lies ahead.

Rolling stock. We are working on a pretty ambitious operating sequence that calls for as many as 100 wagons, plus several rakes of passenger stock. As we’re EM gauge almost everything ready-made has to have its wheelsets adapted or replaced. We are planning some sessions within the club that will look at simple conversions, as well as wagon building from kits, to help us reach our goal.

By the way, you can now follow our progress on Twitter: @orchardwharf

Tagged in: 4mm EM gauge

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Guest Tuesday, 19 February 2019