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Ingatestone Autumn Update: There is some good modelling happening

After a long summer with all the boards of Ingatestone up in the MRC workshop, a lot of progress has been made on both track and scenic elements.   

The scenic crew has been hard at work on the platforms, and after their recent trip through the paint shop when they are added to the layout you suddenly begin to see a station!  We'll need to remove them again at a later date to install the platform lighting.

Eric Sainte has been making progress on the 1880's up side station building:
 
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Because this building is going to sit on the viewing side of the layout, Eric has opened up the main doors so we can see in and through which means young and not so young viewers will be able to see the trains passing by through the doors as if you were really entering the station! Next up for Eric is the interior and roof parts.
 
Another major component of the layout is going to be the overhead catenary, which because of the history of the line there are a variety of different styles of masts and gantries all the way back to the original style erected during the 1950s electrification of the Great Eastern.
 
Inspired by the recent field trip, Tony Rees has put together notes and sketches of each mast to be made:
 
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Tony has taken on the job of being Ingatestone's very own HOPS (High Output Plant System), and luckily he is proving much more efficient than Network Rail!
 
All the masts and gantries are being made with brass 'H' section and here's Tony's cutting list ready for assembly:
 
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The tubular sections are effectively the piles the uprights will sit in, which will both support the uprights in a solid base and allow us to quickly remove the gantries when we need to work on the boards without risking damaging the gantries:
 
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The bottom of the gantries are carefully tapered to fit through the bases as we can see from this under side view:
 
 
 
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And here is the first finished gantry which looks fantastic!
 
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In other parts of the layout we are continuing to install the Cobalt digital point motors - Ingatestone only has 4 points but we want to be able to control all the routing from the control panel we are sharing with Putnam.
 
In addition James has create a control bus line with old computer network Cat 5 cables to be able to link all the signals together.
 
As noted before, Ingatestone is sharing Putnam's impressive fiddle yard and with it being up recently, Tom has been able to put together some initial plans on the formations we will be running when the layout is in "display mode".  We will have a mixture of EMUs, intercity trains, inter modal freight and engineering trains.   We might even see a heritage Hook Continental make an appearance.  More on this to come...
 
We are meeting Mondays and most Thursdays usually one or two of the group are in, new members are always welcome to pop in and lend a hand.  As Chris Ibbotson has noticed - there is a lot of nice modelling happening right now! 

 

Tagged in: Catenary Ingatestone

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Ingatestone Update: Field Trip!

One of the advantages of building a modern image layout like Ingatestone is you get the opportunity to visit the prototype to get up to speed on exactly what you are building. 

So with master craftsman Eric Sainte visiting from Belgium we arranged a field trip which had almost a full turnout from the Ingatestone group:

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Posted by on in Ingatestone

A slightly delayed update this month as we handed over blogging responsibilities to a new member of the OO group - me!

 

A lot of progress has been made on Ingatestone in the last few weeks.  This is greatly helped by the fact that all 6 scenic boards are now up full time in the lower hall.  We expect to working on them all through the summer so do come down and see progress for yourself.

 

One of the goals of Ingatestone was to have as long as possible stretch of mainline to allow us to run some prototypical length trains.  As you can see from these pictures, the length looks quite impressive now we have the full set of boards up running.

 

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Posted by on in Ingatestone

 

We have started the building of our platforms on Ingatestone 00 which are of two types -  traditional brick and the later extensions using a pre-fabricated concrete system (see header picture). This has meant we have been busy making prefabricated plastic components too! And they have to be laid out accurately so that the gap between platform and train is realistic but allow a variety of models that might not always been to scale to pass freely. Another compromise for the modeller as clearances don’t scale proportionally.

 

To aid us in the task on the pre-fab sections, Mo made up a very useful but simple jig for the placing of the support of the platform by setting the distance from the track.

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By clipping the jig to the rails each support is placed at the right distance from the rail and in a parallel line which makes the task easier.b2ap3_thumbnail_20170522_153753.jpg

 

The coming together of members in the Club with their different backgrounds and perspectives can often bring forth innovative solutions to problems ....

 

Posted by on in Ingatestone

New member Phil joined us on Monday for the working day on Ingatestone 00. We put him to work to help paint the platform supports that Mo had made at home. Liz also popped in to see progress and is admiring Mo's model of the cricket club house.

The 00 group is in most mondays between 11:00 and 20:00 hrs, and as you can see we welcome new members - and encourage them to get involved.


Posted by on in Ingatestone

Ingatestone 00  is our demonstration layout on Thursday 20 April in the lower hall, and  we hope to put up the four front scenic boards to help check for shorts and running. 

The Monday session was most productive, Mo and Tom put higher ends on the boards  to protect all that "knitting" aka OHLE as it is installed over the coming months. Gus and Kev are seen testing out points motors running from the DCC in the top picture. If you would like to get involved, please drop us a note through the website, or come in and see us on Thursday evenings at Keen House.
 
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Tagged in: 4mm Ingatestone track

Posted by on in Ingatestone
The real world moves on

 

I took a trip down to Ingatestone station this Sunday arfternoon  to update myself and the team on the referbishment work carried out - although we have to draw a line on when we close our time period  for the  layout.  We had said 2014 to 2016 but its a hard call.

 

The first referbished 321 EMU's have started to enter sirvice which represent a third version of the class for the team doing the crowded build (see red doors blue doors post ) to consider.

 

We also now have the London side  station building sensitively restored and finding new life. As can be seen this sturcher was in a sorry state a few years ago when we first started surveying Ingatestone to be our prototype  and looking back to B&W pic's from the 1970's we are thankful that this fine late 1840's building and 1900's buildings survived the age of concrete & plastic.

 

The group of buildings at Ingatestone have been put forward for world heritage status as they show in one place the style and devlopment of the early railway including the footbridge built in early rolled wrought iron - one of the few remaining in situ this was to be removed and replaced with a motorway style concrete bridge totaly out of keeping. This threat has spurred folk on to get stronger powers of preservation. There are also orignal OHLE structures which relate to early electrification and the first 25 kv main line too . 

 

So my modelling dilemma is do we model the London building in gentle decay or its new smart role as a very 21st century coffee shop? b2ap3_thumbnail_Mar-17-B.JPG b2ap3_thumbnail_Mar-17-A.jpg

 

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Sliding Doors - Red or Blue?

 

Class 321 Electrical Multiple Units (nick named Dusty bins)  are the work horse unit on the Great Eastern main line through Ingatestone on the Essex and Suffolk commuter trains. They come in 4 car formations, but run in multiple to cope with the peak hour demand, so we need a number of them. Although rolling stock for our Club layouts is owned by members (rather than the Club) it’s important on any layout that the stock looks and performs consistently.  So we need to get the colours broadly the same, and have the same ‘specification’ for the electrics, couplings etc to they can operate in multiple. So we are aiming to undertake a ‘crowd-building’ project to spread the work across a number of members. 

Video shared by on in Keen House

The new outer ring 00 test track's proved most useful to the guys from "Ingatestone" 00 as they combined their fleet of container wagons into a 1/2  prototypical length  intermodal train as seen on the GE route from Felixstowe into London. 

We hope to run trains of this size on the layout with class 66, 70, 86 & 90's at the head on Ingatestone. 

We've recently laid extra tracks in between our O gauge tracks, to enable a greater variety of stock to be run, and reflecting the popularity of the test tracks every Thursday evening. All of the tracks can be controlled by DC or DCC to maximise choice.

The new outer OO gauge ring now offers the opportunity on track nights for members to run very long trains round with out them "tail chasing" the last wagon, and with less strain on the locomotive. b2ap3_thumbnail_Kev-Intermodals-Oct-16.jpg

In the picture, Kev counts off all 18 wagons of the test run beside the new tracks that have been installed.

 

 

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Ingatestone's September running day

Last Thursday Ingatestone had a demo / running night so we all brought some stock in to run on the two big end boards. Chris had his class 90 – a work in progress upgrade from the Hornby original whilst James had the old “One Anglia” livery version ‘out of the box’ so we could compare (as shown in the title picture), and talk about the ways to improve it. We also had some HST's and class 56's  running for the fun of it!

New member Gus brought in a class 92 (freshly delivered from Hattons sale) which will be a conversion to GBRF/Euro Port livery as these class 92 were running between Trafford Park/Crewe and Ipswich with a daily container train for Felixstowe  in our time frame.  This was a short lived event in the real world but we will run this train through Ingatestone to show the variety that can appear on today’s Great Eastern railway .

A fun night with the team, as the pictures below show, with Kev fixing a wheel, a class 92 running under Stock Lane past the new signals, and James and Gus in discussion whilst operating.

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Tagged in: 4mm Essex Ingatestone

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Ballasting on Ingatestone

I still get a bit of a buzz when the postman has a parcel for me and yesterday I took delivery of two laser cut kits from Lazor Works. With  some adaption these should make a fair model of the signal box at Ingatestone. Mo has been busy at home working more traditionally on the model  of the gate keepers cottage - Looking good Mo!

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Meanwhile back at Keen House we did a master class in ballasting with Chris, watched avidly by Kev who was soon stuck in with the PVA spray bottle. Note the handy little ballast hopper/dropper - very useful for getting clean lines.

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Ingatestone's back from its holidays

The summer is often a down time for modellers, as family holidays, the gardening and BBQ's take over. But we have been continuing with work on Ingatestone b2ap3_thumbnail_20160905_205804.jpgmostly on Board 6 (the big corner board that goes into the fiddle yard) with what in the photo looks like a complicated amount of wire and points is in fact a simplification. The expanded fiddle yard being built by Putnum has head shunts so we have now dispensed with ours we just need to return our trains to the (correct?) UK running practice. Hence James, Chris and Lawrence have re-laid the track and put in points and motors in tandem. So with one flick of the switch both move which means a lower risk of accidents as the ladder is either open or closed. As pictured the wires and electrics are in Beta testing ahead of proper installation.

Tagged in: 4mm Ingatestone layout

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Class 68 Launch for Ingatestone

It is only fitting that the MRC's new OO layout  Ingatestone is opened by the latest in 4mm Locomotives. Join us from 11am on Sunday 8th May when Dapol's brand new Class 68 will break the tape to open our new 21st Century mainline layout. 

Posted by on in Ingatestone
It's a wrap !

In preparation for Ally Pally this coming weekend, the Ingatestone crew have been busy getting ready the boards that we are taking to display. On Sunday, the packing crates for the corner boards were finished, with an extra day of work by Tom, Bob and myself getting the foam core for the scenery being cut. What is on display will be a work in progress to show visitors how we are building the scenery, to allow them to ask questions, learn and hopefully come and visit us at our open day in May. To act as a "place marker" for the PECO

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Off our trolleys?

It is often said that rail fans are off their trolleys! But the guys working on Ingatestone 00 are now firmly on and in control of their trolley’s.

 

We have been putting in some painstaking work (gold star for Mo for his skill and guidance)  to build some trolleys so the layout can be mobile  This is very important part of the project as we need robust cases on wheels  to store and protect the layout as well as transport it in the months to come .....

 

The is a MRC tradition of  giving packing cases ships’ names - Copenhagen Fields has Titanic & Carpathia   I think I will have to look up the names of the Harwich to Hook of Holland train ferries -anyone know them off hand ?

 

Tom Slade co leader

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Leaves on the line

We are looking for an 00 scale modern tractor as tractors of today are quite  big and sophisticated as can be seen from the pic of a New Holland (monster sized) tractor crossing the level crossing at Ely. Does anyone know of a 4mm model?

 

 

So why the obsession with a farm tractors?  Well it’s because the landscape of Ingatestone 00 is to be autumnal to give us a justification to be running top & tailed rail head treatment trains (leaves on the line trains to the general public), hence tractors ploughing fields and half naked trees etc...

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Update - Track laying and Carpentry.

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Above we see a couple of pictures taken by Lawrence Robbins this afternoon at Keen House. These show the great progress being made on Ingatestone. Mo, Tom and Kevan are seen building the base for the new dollies that will take boards 5 & 6 in due course. The second photo shows boards 5 and 6 which connects into the country end of the fiddle yard that will be common with Putnam.  The mock up of the bridge prepared by Bob Allaway has been a great help in getting track centres spot on and avoiding side-swiping on the curves between Mark 3 coaches (the longest vehicles that will run on Ingatestone).  Once the last piece of trackwork has been done, we will turn to soldering the main power buses to the power droppers. Come and drop by and meet with us - we will be in most Thursdays and the next couple of Sundays !

Progress on Ingatestone's corner boards !

Today was a day of progress for the layout: A working party including Tom Slade and Lawrence Robbins worked on Boards 5 and 6 (the corner boards) to core the stretchers and prepare them for reinforcement. In the pictures, Lawrence is seen at work with the corer fitted to the power drill.  If anyone is interested in joining our group and helping us to keep up the great progress, speak to any of the team members or email us at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Posted by on in News
Ingatestone Away Day !

On Saturday June 27th, the Ingatestone team will be heading to Ingatestone (where else!) for a measuring, drawing and photographing session. From the station area to the Cricket Pavilion, we'll be busy getting the detail as accurate as possible for our layout. If you are in the area from mid-morning onward, come by and see us!

Posted by on in Ingatestone
Welcome to the Ingatestone Blog!

This is the first blog by the team that will be bringing Ingatestone to life in 4mm scale. The team are: Chris Ibbotson, Tom Slade, Bob Allaway, Maurice (Mo) Beanlands, Lawrence Robbins and Kavind Patel. We are at Keen House most Thursday nights from 19:00 and also have Sunday working sessions from 11:00 that will be advertised on here.

We welcome new members irrespective of their skill level - we all have to start somewhere. Drop us an email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to contact us!