In a laptop box

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msimister
Posts: 95
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2015 6:18 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

In a laptop box

Post by msimister »

I've been fascinated with T gauge for a few years but hadn't built anything until Martin Kaselis' Sarum Bridge layout at the Australian Model Railway Association's exhibition in Melbourne last year inspired me. I'm also fascinated with small layouts as such and having a sturdy box my laptop computer came in decided to see what I could manage with my limited skills and time in a 43 cm x 24 cm space. A visit to the beautiful Looe branch in Cornwall provided the idea of a station adjacent to a river, although the model doesn't look much like Looe itself. There is a small terminus at one end (not finished; constructing the station building currently), the track curving around and climbing at 1 in 20 on a rock face and onto a sector plate with four tracks. The river bridge is very crude and made of card, as is most of the landscape and the railway embankment. The rock face is Polyfilla painted grey.
Looe in T.jpg
Looe in T.jpg (82.35 KiB) Viewed 2790 times
I found the flexi track quite difficult to lay as it is so springy and that has resulted in a particularly sharp curve in one place but the rolling stock seems to handle it anyway. The electrical connection was via a flexitrack power cable and, like others have experienced, the connections were very fragile and both wires came off. I've soldered them back onto the track adjacent to the sector plate and it seems to be working fine like that.

My rolling stock is currently a Shapeways-printed GWR railcar and a Class 108 DMU. I'm reasonably happy with the railcar but the paint didn't take to the DMU as well, so up close it doesn't look all that good. I am trying to summon up the courage to paint a yellow line along the sides and front of the railcar per the prototype, probably using masking tape.

Taking advantage of Shapeways' free postage offer, I've just bought a GWR parcels railcar, a Class 156 two-car DMU, a Class 24 diesel loco and a Warship class diesel loco, all of which look good in their 'naked' form.

The layout is some way off being finished. The station needs finishing and I intend to build a pub next to the river and another bridge next to the station and scatter a few animals and people around.

My intention was to use this layout to learn a few skills and I have certainly achieved that objective and it has given me a lot of satisfaction. Mulling over what to build next but want it to include a canal and narrowboats.

Cheers,
Malcolm

martink
Posts: 259
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Re: In a laptop box

Post by martink »

Nice! And my fault, is it? Fair enough I suppose, since Orbost did the same to me.

Anyway, how have you done the sector plate? (traverser?) Particularly the track alignment? Train storage is always a major problem in this scale due to the issues with the points, but I haven't heard of anyone else trying that approach in T yet.

msimister
Posts: 95
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2015 6:18 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: In a laptop box

Post by msimister »

Traverser is probably a more accurate word than sector plate. Taking a cue from something you said, I wanted as much as possible to use materials I already had, so its 3 mm board (MDF? I can't remember what they call it) that I had lying around, top and bottom, sandwiching and mounted on transverse pieces of pine I had in the garage. The electrics are wires soldered to the rails (at opposite ends of the traverser for each rail) and the connection via a screw under each track making contact with a brass strip. It seems very robust and next time I wouldn't bother with the bottom piece of board. Friction keeps the traverser in place when positioned by eye. I've found that good enough and the rolling stock seems to cope even if the track doesn't quite align exactly with the 'main' line.

Cheers,

Malcolm

mattd10
Posts: 205
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:12 pm
Location: West Sussex, UK
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Re: In a laptop box

Post by mattd10 »

Hi Malcolm.
This is a lovely bit of modelling and truly has the essence of the Looe branch! Look forward to seeing more!
Matt

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