27 June 2010

Onward and upward

Track laying continues around the inner feeder loop, from B1l round to F4i. My trusty Hoover gets up the inner incline without any complaints - so the secret really may be in beefing up my motive power. I wonder how much that will cost...

The crossover shown in the picture (F1i) will have surface-mounted point motors because there is too much woodwork underneath the track beds to accommodate underslung PL-10s. I still hope to use PL-10s, because I can then attach microswitches to give me a display on the control panel (remember that?).

The single point in the foreground is the turnout for the "cassette loader" mentioned in a much earlier post. I don't know whether I will ever build that, but it's useful to have the option. So far, that is the only Hornby point on the model.

I have now got as far as I can reasonably go with the track laying, without doing other stuff. That "other stuff" is listed in my previous post. In essence: sort out the alignment around the lower level first, then make the storage sidings ready (lights, camera, action!) for the lids to go on.

Having been admonished in an old Cyril Freezer book that "unless there is access to all tracks, performance will suffer" [1], I am thinking a lot about how I'll keep good access to the lower-level storage sidings once the lids do go on. I know my design is not optimal - I would rather not hide the sidings away like that - but space constraints have dictated it for the type of layout I want to build. My current thinking is to make the front of every station baseboard (i.e. boards B2-B4) hinged, so that I can lift up flaps to get into the sidings. I'm still working on that, but it seems to be the best option I have.

[1] C.J. Freezer, PSL Book of Model Railway Track Plans, 1988. Yeovil: Patrick Stephens Ltd.

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