AnyRail Model Railroad Forum

General Category => Track plans => Topic started by: Chris on May 17, 2009, 12:19:04 am

Title: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on May 17, 2009, 12:19:04 am
(Was 'Completed Z-Scale Track Plan'.)
Hi everyone.

As it is 120 days since I posted the last message to my earlier thread, I thought I would bring you all up to date under a new subject heading.

Since last posting, there has been a fair amount of work put into the layout between fallow periods when I turn my mind to other things. Back in December I had most of the above board trackwork and signals in place but none of it worked. Progress was spasmodic but was spurred on by the prospect of another exhibition in Elgin by the Moray MRG. I got some of the signal/train control wiring in place but didn't actually use it all that much at the exhibition
(see http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20090411-MorayMRG/index.htm (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20090411-MorayMRG/index.htm)).

Since then (after another fallow period during which I practised for and performed at two concerts) I have worked on the down end exit routing and, fingers crossed, it appears to be working OK. Forward motion (including route setting) is controlled by the signals and reverse running partially manually and partially by reverse direction diodes (see http://trains.manvell.org.uk/z-scale/layout/index.htm (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/z-scale/layout/index.htm) where the wiring diagram can be seen). The reverse running still needs a little more attention.

If anyone wants/needs further information, click on 'Contact Webmaster' at the top of most of my pages or send a private message through this forum.

With my best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on June 04, 2009, 12:00:14 am
Hi Chris,

Sorry, sort of missed this post.
Nice photos, and some beautiful rolling stock you have!

So if I understand you correctly, you have to keep track of the trains manually. Is that still doable with a layout of this size? Personally, after a lot of struggling, I finally decided to go DCC all the way, with a PC to control it. I should say it opened all sorts of new possibilities. It's H0 scale in my case, and I'm not sure how the Z scale decoders are doing these days ;)

Do you have any plans to further develop the scenery?

Anyway, impressed with what you achieved so far. Especially as it's obviously exhibition proof!

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on June 04, 2009, 09:04:23 am
Good morning David.

You wrote:
> Sorry, sort of missed this post.

No problem - I'd forgotten I'd written it!

> Nice photos, and some beautiful rolling stock you have!

I have been very lucky in tracking down some intereting items. I decided to ditch all the modern stuff - the coaches especially look so silly going round the 195mm curves - and concentrate mainly on Epochs 1 and two. I have kept a few later wagons are still kicking around and I hope no-one notices. I prefer teh earlier stock anyway; I feel that it has more personality than later designs.

> So if I understand you correctly, you have to keep track of
> the trains manually. Is that still doable with a layout of this
> size?

Physically it is not a problem;; the jayout is only 610mm deep and nearly all the points are accessible from the back. Those that aren't are not used for exhibitions. The main problem is remembering to set them for the right route. I have lost track (no pun intended) of teh number of times that I have had to back up a train that has read-ended another in the fiddle yard or crossed from Gleis 4 to the reief road. So, setting the starting signals on Gleis 3/4 will set the double slip to route teh train onto the up main. Then I only have to worry about the doubel slip in the hidden sidings. The area round the loco shed is rarely used at exhibitions; usually only when requested by small sprogs!

> Personally, after a lot of struggling, I finally decided to
> go DCC all the way, with a PC to control it. I should say it
> opened all sorts of new possibilities. It's H0 scale in my case,
> and I'm not sure how the Z scale decoders are doing these
> days Wink

No good for the trains as they are too small (though diesels can sometimes be fitted with decoders). The rest could be done that way but I already have the components for building the multiplexers. I've never been attracted to computer control - not my scene - and I think the struggle to run a railway manually is much more challensing..

> Do you have any plans to further develop the scenery?

Definitey but they are on teh back burner at present. Problem is that I have never done scenery before (other than grey and green blotting paper some 50 years ago).

> Anyway, impressed with what you achieved so far. Especially
> as it's obviously exhibition proof!

Thank you David. So far very little damage so far, even after a helper dropped one end in Elgin.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 09, 2009, 06:16:04 pm
Hello again everyone.

I have just finished the process of semi-automating the train routing into and out of the station area which shoud make the operator's task much simpler. It's been an interesting exercise and maybe, with hindsight, I would have used a different system. However, so far it seems to be working though extensive testing with three trains running may throw up a few problems. Anyway, you can see the designs, and how they evolved, on my website at
http://trains.manvell.org.uk/z-scale/layout/ (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/z-scale/layout/) if you are interested.

Best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (update and change of URL)
Post by: Chris on July 26, 2009, 02:35:30 pm
Hi folks.

Just a short note to say that my pages have been updated after reworking my station entry strategy. Also to advise that the webpage has been moved to http://trains.manvell.org.uk/layouts/z-scale/Breitefurt/ though the old address will redirect you anyway.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 13, 2009, 12:20:32 am
Hi Guys.
Just another short note to say that I have completed and installed two diode matrix boards to control the routing into and out of the hidden sidings. Interesting exercise and much simpler that I had imagined. I should have done this with the station as well, though where I would have put the boards, I have no idea.
        So, I am about ready to start getting ready for the Inverness exhibition early next month though there is still a lot to do.
        Details, as usual on my website (see previous message).
        All the best, everyone,
                Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on August 13, 2009, 10:33:30 pm
Hi Chris,

Thanks for the update. And good luck in Inverness (don't hit any deer on your way back...)

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 13, 2009, 10:56:09 pm
Thanks David.

Got a weird electrical fault at the moment where the ancillary output is being added to the controller output (very dangerous). Only happens when the automatic routing and signalling is enabled. As far as I can see, the only solution is an additional power supply.

Yeah, I will try to avoid the dear this time. Troube is that since deer stalking went out of fashion the blighters are everywhere.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 05, 2009, 04:16:55 pm
Hi All;.

For those, if any, who look at mt Z scale pages, I am delighted to be able to announce that they all now include a Google translation facility to allow readers to view then in up to fifty different languages from Africaans to Yiddish. The translations are not perfect but they are readable. The N Scale etc. pages will be updated in due course.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 07, 2009, 12:38:59 am
Hello everyone.

I am ashamed at how long I have been away from the forum but two exhibitions involving additions to the layout plus a lot of other non-rail problems (e.g. practicing for a concert) have occupied my time.

Breitefurt was exhibited in Elgin at the beginning of November and again in Falkirk at the end of November. I have written up a webpage ( http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20091128-Falkirk/index.htm ) for the latter but the former has yet to be done.

A few modifications are to be made to the layout, principally as I have decided not to go for a second board. This makes it unnecessary to have tracks going off the right hand side and some of these are being removed/altered. You can see the changes on my website.

It has become very obvious that this is not an exhibition layout; it is far too complicated. Having looked at a lot of one-man layouts, I note that they are very simple; Breitefurt is complicated. I have to work alone; Breitefurt needs two operators (basically up and down).

Other lessons learned are that the sidings at the up end (right on the trackplan) are pretty useless; it would have been better to have the loco shed there and the sidings at the down end. Why? As they are the loco tends to be at the buffer end of the siding.

No more exhibitions booked up yet so I am giving teh layout a rest once I have made the mods.

My best wishes to all,
Chris.

NOTE: After some trouble uploading the file correctly, it should be fine now.
Note 2. Thank you David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: kimbo on December 28, 2009, 06:21:56 pm
If it's any comfort, I've been even worse!  ;D
Title: Re: Breitenfurt - Ost (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on May 19, 2010, 05:30:54 pm
Dear Friends,

Once again it has been a long time since I have posted here though I have had the occasional visit to the forum. So, just to bring you up to date...

First, the name of my layout has changed. A German friend of mine pointed out that, although technically correct, because I was using Breitefurt as the name of a place there should be an 'n' between Breit (broad) and Furt (ford). So the name has changed to Breitenfurt - Ost. I added the "- Ost" a) to make the change very obvious even though it means that my compass will have to be rotated through 180 degrees and b) to distinguish it from several Breitenfurts in Germany.

The track layout has now been fixed so I really have no further use for AnyRail until I start of my N scale layout later this year - hence my absence from the forum.

Breitenfurt - Ost, under its old name, was exhibited again this Easter weekend and you can see photos on my website both at my layout diary and under Exhibitions. There have been some significant changes but there is still a lot of work to do. This has been hampered by hospital visits, family visits, rehearsals & concerts and a lack of courage over starting to detail the landscape. There are no model shops within a hundred miles of here (on winding Highland roads) where one can get advice so I will have to buy on the web and hope I get the right materials.

Also, I am moving more and more towards Epochs 1 and 2 so gradually all later outline items will have to be removed. Not as daunting as one would think as there isn't really that much. I will keep my 'later' locomotives (I like them) and some modern freight and Ep 3 freight, again becausue I like them. You can see my growing collection of Epoch 1 items again on my website.

I will continue to visit the forum on occasions and may contribute a bit, but once I start on the N scale (several fundamental decisions to be made first) I will be back again.

With thanks to David and others for all your help. And see you again soon, I hope.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on May 19, 2010, 05:53:00 pm
Thank you Chris for your contribution.

By the way, shouldn't you move to T gauge instead of N ;) It's easier for transportation around Scotland and abroad!

I like your layout and followed the progress you made with great interest.

One grammar detail:
I think it's more natural to put Bahnhof in front of the name:
Bahnhof Breitenfurt-Ost

Hope to see you back here soon!

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on May 19, 2010, 06:07:59 pm
Hi David.

Thank you; and thank you for following the layout.

I do have some T scale and was, AFAIK, the first to exhibit it in the UK. I introduced it to a friend of mine and he has really taken it to heart and has built a beautiful little layout.called Pagoda Bay. You can see it on my site by going the exhibitions index and looking at either the last Inverness and/or Elgin MRC exhibitions. In fact, I looked after it a lot of the time at Elgin. The glass enclosure makes it virtually trouble free.

I will change my title on the layout to Bahnhof etc. Thanks. I have no German, hence these small errors.

Next exhibition will be in September in Inverness.

With best wishes,
Chris.

PS. If you ever decide to brave coming to Scotland, do let me know. You're welcome to stay here or we could meet up somewhere.

[Later. Corrected N scale to T scale in 2nd paragraph and added 'in the UK'. Corrected spelling error.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on May 19, 2010, 11:48:01 pm
Hi Chris,
Great to see your layout. The other option could be "Breitfurt" which in the Saarland. Breitenfurt is in Bavaria as you know, which was not far from where we lived in Schwaebisch-Gmuend.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on May 20, 2010, 12:06:05 am
Thanks for the info Andrew.

I actually called it Breitefurt as that is the German for Broadford, a village some 3 miles from where I live and the only translatable name in the series of townships that surround it (mine being Breacais Iosal). I never found the name on Google (though I wasn't too thorough in looking through all the entries). Breitenfurt is better as I am vaguely modelling the layout in Bavaria although I do run some Prussische, Bandenische and Wurttembergische ('scuse my pigeon German) trains as well. What the heck - if you look at those layouts at Elgin they have a big mish-mash of locos and rolling stock and are placed in towns no-one has ever heard of. I'm not proud!

The important thing is that I like my layout, and it works (apart from the occasional logic foul-up (but even Microsoft suffers from that). It's difficult to learn as it is but I am planning a new control panel which shoudl make it easier for a second operator to work with me. This, if it ever happens, will make it much easier to undertake some of the more interesting operations. E.G. actually using Breitenfurt - Ost as a terminus for commuter trains and/or run trains to and from the branch line. As it is, routes are set up automatically from any track to any track by the push of a button and power only needs to switched to the destination, beit a platform track of the up or down main. At the moment exhibitions involve a fair amount of tailchasing - not very interesting.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on May 20, 2010, 12:29:54 am
I've been once to the Isle of Skye.

Unfortunately it was a very bad experience. Mainly remember rain and flies  :(

I've been quite a few times to Edinburgh, but only once further up north.

But be sure, next time in Scotland, I'll try to schedule a visit!

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on May 20, 2010, 12:42:50 am
My wife and I first met at St Andrews in 1990, we both teach Scottish country dancing. The last time I was in Scotland was in 1992, I played in the Edinburgh tattoo with the Adelaide University Regiment Pipes and Drums. Unfortunately every time we now fly to Europe we see my out-laws sorry in-laws.
Mechthild and I should make a trip north to Bonnie Scotland, too many years between drinks.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitenfurt - Ost (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on May 20, 2010, 12:58:44 am
Well, we moved here in 1978 and I still haven't developed webbed feet.

I agree David, it can rain - horizontally. My wife used to make her own cloths and one fabric catalogue had the words "guaranteed against all but Hebridean rain." That winter we rally learnt why! In fairness, though we do get a bit more than our fair share of rain, if you come early summer (May/June) it can be OK, albeit cloudy, but around the equinoxes (esp. up to a month after) the weather can be foul. About every eleven years we get 100 mph (160 km/h) storms but we survive. (The last really bad one about 6 years ago demolished one of the mobile phone site in north Skye. by my reckoning the wind over that particular hill was probably up to 150mph (240km/h) what with the Bernoulli effect. The mast kept standing though. Conversely, I remember a summer about 10 years ago where we had temperatures up in the high 20s while my colleagues who were in the Bahamas froze in their t-shirts and suffered continuous torrential rain.

Anyway, 'tis nearly midnight so I am off to bed.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 11, 2010, 11:29:32 pm
Hi All.

Well, after a pretty long hiatus, I am back on track, as they say. Started on the scenery today and an update can be seen on my site complete with a rather grotty photo (will do better later). Not up to "real modellers'" standards, I'm sorry to say, but this is my very first attempt at 'proper' scenery. Do have a look.

All the best,
Chris.

[13th July: I had to go to Inverness on the train yesterday morning. I was thinking that maybe I had overdone it on my tree planting until I saw the forestry along Lochcarronside. Much denser than mine so happy again.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 14, 2010, 11:10:27 pm
Hi everybody.

I've added another brief update and four new images. Still not happy with my landscape skills, but it's early days yet.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on July 15, 2010, 12:26:02 am
Hi Chris,

Of course it's not easy in scale Z, but to be honest I'm not really convinced this is the best you can do!

For my own scenery, I use a plant called 'Zeeschuim' in Dutch. Here's an example picture:
http://www.universmodeliste.com/zeeschuim-gpp-xml-277_280-2028.html (http://www.universmodeliste.com/zeeschuim-gpp-xml-277_280-2028.html)
Don't know the English or Latin name, but you can probably Google for it. It's a very cheap and filigrane plant that will probably look a lot better. If you want you can spray paint it, or you can dip it in a white glue/water solution and sprinkle it with 'foliage' powder.

Perhaps you should not mix too many different types of trees in one area. Colorwise, they seem to be in a different season each. Also paint and cover the underground, and add some lower shrubs and plants underneath the trees in the front.

I hope you take this as constructive criticism!

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 15, 2010, 09:08:06 am
Hi David. Many thanks for responding.

Quote from: David on July 15, 2010, 12:26:02 am
Of course it's not easy in scale Z, but to be honest I'm not really convinced this is the best you can do!


Oh, I agree but, as I wrote, this is my very first attempt and I did do everything in the wrong order.

QuoteFor my own scenery, I use a plant called 'Zeeschuim' in Dutch. Here's an example picture:
http://www.universmodeliste.com/zeeschuim-gpp-xml-277_280-2028.html (http://www.universmodeliste.com/zeeschuim-gpp-xml-277_280-2028.html)
Don't know the English or Latin name, but you can probably Google for it. It's a very cheap and filigrane plant that will probably look a lot better. If you want you can spray paint it, or you can dip it in a white glue/water solution and sprinkle it with 'foliage' powder.


It certainly looks interesting. One of the problems with Z is that it is not a popular modelling scale in the UK. As a result, very few people make scenic materials for it. For instance, Woodland Scenics covers only HO and N. The N scale 'undergrowth' has become Z scale bushes. Some of the grass sold by UK suppliers would be taller than a child in Z. Having said that, I did feel that the grass looked rather like a well manicured lawn.

QuotePerhaps you should not mix too many different types of trees in one area. Colorwise, they seem to be in a different season each. Also paint and cover the underground, and add some lower shrubs and plants underneath the trees in the front.


Yes, I agree. I have pulled out the flowering tree, which was a pretty poor model anyway, and the conifers have gone and been replaced by some taller broadleaved trees. As for the two at the extreme left, they have been left in. They are not autumn coloured. Maybe, if the weather lets up for a while, I will take a couple of outdoor shots of the two scenes. They would look a lot better then.

Incidentally, the ground under the trees is pretty bare earth and mulch with the grass extending only a small way into the forest. This can be clearly seen in the 3rd image that I posted last night.

QuoteI hope you take this as constructive criticism!


David, your comments are well received. In fact, you are the first person to give some helpful criticism - mostly I have had just "looking good", etc. One person did comment on the density of the undergrowth at the up end. The two scenes are not quite finished yet as I need to put fencing round the managed woodland and possibly a notice of some kind mentioning the company that manages it.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on July 15, 2010, 02:20:42 pm
Chris,

I have a couple of comments. I'm not sure if they can be construed as constructive or not, that's up to you.

First, I don't think the yellow-foliaged trees look at all right behind all the greenery in some of the pix. Is it fall? Is it late summer? Are there any trees in Europe/UK that go that yellow before anything else turns?

Second, could you post an up to date .any file?
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David K Smith on July 15, 2010, 02:58:03 pm
Chris, I know Z isn't popular in the UK and that makes it hard to purchase products. However, for most scenery items, the term "scale" can be a little deceiving. In fact, nearly all trees are vastly undersized for the scale indicated on the product. Thus it would be perfectly fine--in fact, more accurate--to use N scale trees and scenery products for Z scale.

I recognize the trees you're using, and they aren't exactly the best you can find. I might suggest the following. Check out the Woodland Scenics website. It has some great pointers and tutorials for scenery-making. I'd suggest reviewing this information before going much further.

http://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/index.cfm

Unfortunately, doing a Google search for making model railroad scenery yields an endless stream of useless websites, 99% of which were set up to funnel click money into someone's pocket. If you look at them, almost none of them have any photographs at all, and most of the information--which is usually outdated or of questionable quality--has been copied and pasted back and forth from other sites. That's not very useful! (I've been tempted for a long time to create a series of detailed online how-to's, but I need to retire first so I'll have the time to do it.)

Although Woodland Scenics is obviously providing information to entice people to purchase their products, their information is actually quite useful and good. Also, you may want to poke around John Cubbins' site, ZTrains. He has started building a library of useful tutorials. (He also has an excellent editorial there right now--very topical.)

http://www.ztrains.com/

I can make a number of other more specific recommendations, but for now I think the best starting point is to do some research.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on July 15, 2010, 03:54:17 pm
Chris,

For materials, you could try "Anita Decor". They're present on almost every exhibition in The Netherlands and Germany, and they have a website: http://www.anitadecor.nl/ (http://www.anitadecor.nl/)

Of course, Dutch is no problem for you at all ;), but they might provide a few interesting things, especially the trees ("Bomen"), and plants ("Beplanting"). They have ready-made ones and kits. I think that the pictures are very helpful for inspiration as well. In the Bomen/Ecoline section you can find some.

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 15, 2010, 03:58:25 pm
Hi David and Jeff. Thank you for your comments.

First let me say that I have had these trees for several months. Some will not be used at all as they are too unrealistic. The rest will have to do for now. I don't have any books on German trees but here in teh UK, leaves do come in a variety of shades of green and those 'yellow' trees are, in fact, a very light green. The others are far to green for their own good - certainly far richer than the trees outside my room (next to which are a group of baby sparrows {not to be modelled!} perched on the power cables {not to be modelled either}).

I am not to worried about the pale trees - I like them. And, yes, there are plenty of trees here that turn earlier than others by several weeks, just as in the spring it can be a couple of months between the first and last trees to leaf. We actually thought our fuchsia was dead and suddenly it has sprung into life this month!

The landscape progress was as follows. Shape carved out of extruded polystyrene bought cheap from the locol builder yard. This was painted using Woodland Scenics earth undercoat (C1229) where the trees would be, followed by green undercoat (C1228) as far in as the second row of trees and then near vertical surfaces were painted stone grey (C1218). I find the stone grey a bit too dark and an artist friend of mine is going to try to make it look like real rock the week after next. She is also going to paint a backdrop for me to put, eventually, behind the 'upstage' landscape (more trees - conifers most likely).

I am not going for absolute scenic authenticity with this layout as the focus is on the operation rather than the scenery. Maybe my next will reverse the rôles. It would certainly be a lot easier to operate!

I am familiar with a fair number of Z scale sites, many are linked from my site's Links page. I see the amazing work that some modellers have produced but know I will never have the patience to emulate them. I am not in the best of health and one of my eyes is now well below par and I want to run my trains above all things. Now I am retired I have the opportunity. Hence my passing reference to impressionism rather than absolute realism. (Also, I have to live with my wife who feels the whole exercise is just playing with my toys and a bit of a waste of time and I should be doing the decoration and the garden. Compromise is the name of the game.)

Having said all that, I am still open to suggestions as I still have to fill that 6ft (180cm) length behind the layout and the branch line.

As requested, I have appended the latest version of the .any file though it is little changed from recent ones.

With best wishes and thanks,
Chris

[PS The trees are moslt not glued so that changes can be made later.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 15, 2010, 04:05:28 pm
Hi David. Thanks for the 'heads up'. I will have a look at their site. Although I know even less Dutch than German, I do have the amazing Firefox extension that can (when it feels like it) translate from may different languages into many others, including English.

Interestingly enough, it was a Dutch friend of mine, living in the Black Isle just north of Inverness, who introduced me to Z scale and inspired me to build a layout myself.

With best wishes,
Chris.

PS. Funny really. All the best responses are coming from a layout planning application's forum, not from the modelling forums!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on July 15, 2010, 04:11:14 pm
Yeah, well, I'm also working on and struggling with my own scenery! For the third time, after throwing away two previous layouts where operation turned out to be too awkward.

One of the simple things you could do is just downgrade the brightness of the colours a bit. It might be the picture, but they seem a bit over the top. With some simple coloured chalk powder you can do that quite easily (and undo it too!).

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 15, 2010, 06:02:59 pm
Hi David.

Yes, the colours in the pictures is not true to life, presumably because I was using flash on daylight balance. It has rained all day so won't be able to take outdoor photos. Will try tomorrow if the weather improves. However, I doubt it! Oh well, ces't la vie.

Best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 15, 2010, 10:09:02 pm
Dear Friends,

I have taken four more photos of the two quadrants. One shows modifications to the down end quadrant (my view) and three give an idea of what the public will see. As turning the layout round is an absolute pain, fraught with danger and needing hard hats and steel toecaps, they are taken on my desk. I have tried to match teh actual colours as best I can with my very simple graphics program (PhotoEd). Usual address.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 16, 2010, 12:13:23 am
Sorry. Forgot to upload the updates. They are aon line now.

Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 21, 2010, 10:20:51 am
Well, I've started on the background landscape. Woodland Scenics Earth and Green undercoats have been added and the rock faces have been panted with stone grey. It all looks a bit dark but it's only the start. The family are away next week so I will get the layout downstairs and put it on the kitchen table so that I can work on it a bit more easily. So, hopefully, I will have the surrounding landscape and the backdrop ready by the time they get back. I won't be able to plant all the trees as I only ordered (150 of them) yesterday. There's a couple of photos on my site if yoe interested.

Best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David K Smith on July 21, 2010, 01:11:07 pm
Chris, I think the coloration is good. You may want to think about applying a base texture coat on the foam first, before painting it. Some possibilities include spackling compound, thick texture paint, a layer of paper-mâché, or even plain plaster of Paris. This will create a more natural-looking surface for the scenic coloring.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 21, 2010, 02:31:09 pm
Hi David.

While I accept your point, I made a decision with this layout, it being my first attempt, to keep the scenery very simple. Hence my dense forestry in my earlier work. I will be adding over 100 trees to those two parts of the scenery, along with grass and a fairly dense coverage of bushes and undergrowth. Also, an artist friend is going to highlight the rock faces to look more '3-Dish'. I am still not quite sure what to do about the road bridge and steep hill. I doubt if the hill would have been cobbled so, once it has been smoothed, I will probably apply a tarmac finish before adding a few vehicles. The rest of the roads will be cobbled and the goods yard will have a cinder finish.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on July 22, 2010, 02:26:03 pm
Chris,

For the road surface, try an application of acrylic paint with the addition of the sand that is used for sand-blasting metal. This is usually available at industrial supply stores. It's not REALLY sand, of course, but carefully prepared silicon crystals. They're small and all the same size, to avoid clogging or sticking in sand blasting setups. When you're done, you have a surface that looks a lot like asphalt, if you've used a matt or satin-finish black.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 22, 2010, 03:16:25 pm
I've seen 240 wet/dry sand paper used on a HO layout so 600 might be good for your Z.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 22, 2010, 03:18:24 pm
Thank you Jeff.

I had looked at a couple of commercially available items but they just didn't look right. I'll have to get the 'sand' on the web as no-one round here is likely to have any. As for the cobbles, I am we on the way there.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 22, 2010, 03:20:35 pm
Thanks Andrew. Sounds a bit like emery paper. It might look good for the freight facility.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 22, 2010, 03:24:56 pm
You're welcome, never really know how the wet/dry sanding paper is called else where and emery paper is usually the the normal sand coloured sheets.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 29, 2010, 12:28:38 am
Hi Everybody.

I feel that a giant step forwards has been achieved today with the completion of the backdrop. This was painted by a friend of mine who is, to my mind at least, a pretty good artist. So I wish to thank her (she wishes to remain un-named) for all her hard work. In addition, I would like to thank Ian Chard (Broadford Gallery) for all his help preparing the 'canvas'.Do have a look and let me know what you think. (Bear in mind that adding grass, undergrowth and trees have yet to be done.

With my best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 29, 2010, 12:36:59 am
Hi Chris,
It looks great, your friend did a great job. Reminds me of the hills surrounding where we live in Germany.
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 29, 2010, 01:09:44 am
Thanks for teh comemnt Andrew. I will pass on your message to my friend when I see her later today (Thursday). I am sure that she will be delighted.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 29, 2010, 01:37:22 am
Hi Chris,
Here's a photo for you to look at.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on July 29, 2010, 09:22:12 am
Heh! Looks just like home (except for the two wee posts at the side of the road). Thanks Andrew. Where is it?

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 29, 2010, 02:33:23 pm
The 2 prominent mounts are Rechberg on left and Stuifen on the right. We were driving from Hohenstaufen heading north. Between the Rechberg and Stuifen mounts is the village of Rechberg. Also atop of Rechberg mount is a Church. This is about 60 km east of Stuttgart and 15km from Goeppingen, where Maerklin's Head office is.

These 3 hills/mounts are known as the Drei Kaiserberge or 3 emperor's mountains, so named after Holy Roman emperors who came from there.

Here are some links.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Hohenstaufen
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drei_Kaiserberge
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on July 29, 2010, 02:50:23 pm
The Maerklin Museum is interesting as is the Transport museum in Nuernberg, if I were to put the all my photos and video here it would take days. If you get the chance to go do it you will not be disappointed.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 04, 2010, 12:13:45 pm
Hi Andrew.

Much as I would love to get to Nurnberg, I have enough problems getting to Glasgow, let alone further abroad.

Incidentally, I may have discovered a simple way to do road surfaces. It used an acrylic primer with built in grit. I have ordered "Elephant", a mid grey tone. (Asphalt roads are only black for the first couple of days after laying.) I'll let you know how I get on.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 04, 2010, 03:32:27 pm
Ok. And if you intend doing concrete roads, consider buying a bag of cheap concrete and dusting the road surface of the wet paint with that until it looks right.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 04, 2010, 05:17:02 pm
Ach, Jeff..... perrrleeasssse! No concrete!

I have printed some lovely cobblestones for the 'street' and station yard. They are slightly over-scale, so that the pattern can be seen, but not too obviously large. The loco yard and freight yard will be black (as in cinders) emery paper/cloth with a few highlights.

I've ordered some Faller track ballast, and fencing to separate the various areas from each other. The hill will, as mentioned, be (elephant) grey asphalt but first I have to smooth the surface as it has 2ft (60cm) deep potholes in it! I have just over 6 weeks from now until the Inverness exhibition.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 05, 2010, 02:06:48 am
Having driven and walked over cobblestone, I would rather have a dirt cow-path (instead of the usual cobblestone one...) :)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 05, 2010, 01:54:36 pm
Hi Jeff.

Bearing in mind that my layout is set in the late 1890's/early 1900's concrete would be very unlikely, hence the cobblestones. Actually, when I was last in Germany, back in the 60's I often rode my old Vincent Black Shadow over cobbles in Frankfurt am Maine without feeling any excessive vibration. I guess it depends on how well they are laid (and how long ago) as well as how many 40 tonne trucks have driven over them.

Of course, from my layout's point of view, they just look pretty.

I've just tried the paint that I bought to see how rough the finish is and, sadly, it looks like it will fail the test. However, it is very similar in colour to the road past my house. The supplier does to another paint with sand in it do I shall try that mixed in with what I already have.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on August 05, 2010, 02:21:40 pm
We have a lot of cobblestone roads here in Holland as well, and well, the faster you drive the better it is!
It seems that at the right speed you start to hover, only barely touching the ground every now and then (this happens usually at 70km/h). When you slow down to 40km/h, it often becomes unbearable.

Of course, only try this in safe conditions, not in the Altstadt of Frankfurt am Main ;)

I imagine that in scale Z it's difficult, but I have used plaster of Paris in a mold for my roads. These molds are available from Spörle.

And example is here:
http://www.altenbekener-eisenbahnfreunde.de/Grundlagen/Gips/gips.html (http://www.altenbekener-eisenbahnfreunde.de/Grundlagen/Gips/gips.html)
Not necessary to read the German text, just scroll down for the pictures.

Of course this is scale H0, I don't know if they have appropriate molds for other scales as well.

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on August 05, 2010, 02:32:33 pm
Hi Chris,
I think most of the inner city in German cities have cobble stones. Unfortunately, most of them have a speed limit of 30km, which usually is very bumpy. Unless they were correctly laid.

Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on August 05, 2010, 02:37:18 pm
I forgot to add this link with the view of Breitenfurt, in the Free State of Bavaria.
http://www.dollnstein.info/gem-brei.htm
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 05, 2010, 07:54:10 pm
Chris,

" back in the 60's I often rode my old Vincent Black Shadow over cobbles in Frankfurt am Maine without feeling any excessive vibration"

Maybe they use the same cobblestone modeling technique you do? :D
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 07, 2010, 08:28:47 am
Hi Jeff.

MY cobblestones will be laid to perfection!!!

I've done an interim diary update (i.e. no pictures - they will come later). Probably not worth the visit unless you really want to.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 09, 2010, 11:30:52 pm
Hello Folks.

Today saw another small leap forward. At the end of last week I prepared the baseboard for ground level scenery by applying a couple of coats of Woodland Scenics undercoats (green and brown as appropriate). Today I added in the cinder covered freight yard and the cobblestoned street and station yard. There is a helicopter view of it all but it's not very good as I have mislaid my camera and had to use a slimline pocket one instead. Anyway, do have a look (link below) and let me know what you think. (And, yes, the cobblestones are perfectly laid Jeff. You would find it a delight to be able to walk along the street and look over the wall into the loco refuelling access track.)

With my best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 12, 2010, 11:32:24 pm
Hello everybody. Me again.

I put all the bits of my layout together this afternoon so that a friend was able to see it in all its glory. So, while I was at it I took four photos (actually a lot more but four were selected) to put up on the website. These were taken with my replacement camera with a proper flashgun attached. They are now up on the site and are, I feel, the best so far even though I set the wrong aperture and forgot to put the flash on wide angle. Anyway, I think the effect is very good and no shadows! Do have a look - I hope you will be impressed.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on August 12, 2010, 11:42:14 pm
Indeed, looks quite good!
Especially the right hand side, where the scenery flows quite well into the backdrop.

Perhaps you can make some more pictures at Z-person eye level?

The only thing that worries me a bit is the shiny track. Are you going to put some ballast in, and blacken it a bit? I know it's very risky in Z gauge to do anything to the track at all, but I'm sure it will make it look so much more realistic.

David.

Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 13, 2010, 12:01:03 am
Hi David. Thanks.

Yes, ballast will be added, probably the last addition to the layout (on the advice of a veteran modeller). There is still an awful lot to do before then. For instance:

Though I really like the open platforms, I feel that a train shed is required at the up end of the station. I have two N kits which will just span the 3 tracks. They will look a bit chunky but that is probably the best I can do if I cut down the legs and get rid of the station name boards.

I still need to do something about a road bridge at the left hand end.

I need to add a population (expensive!) and vehicles (also expensive).

Rest of grass, trees, fences, walls (where can one buy walls?) etc. to be added.

And so it goes on, and on, and on....

All the best,
Chris.

PS. AR got a mention on the n-gauge soc. forum. The comment was, excellent program but export to jpeg too low resolution for publishing. I managed to point out that at 1:1 my layout would print at 1000dpi across an A4 page. That should be good enough!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 13, 2010, 10:41:37 pm
"I still need to do something about a road bridge at the left hand end."

If all else fails, try scratch-building :) But seriously, a lot can be done with available materials like laid stone walls and such that, if you're careful, scale extremely well. At least more is now out there in N scale to choose from. I can still remember the 'Bad Old Days' when about the only thing around was HO scale brick paper, Plastruct shapes, and balsa wood. Let me tell you, trying to slice out a 2mm strip a half-meter long is not a picnic.

In fact, I was considering trying out a new method soon. You roll out a thin sheet of Sculpey modeling clay and use some of the commercial texture mats to create stone walls. Then you bend it and cut it to shape and bake it to turn it hard.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 15, 2010, 10:58:10 pm
Thank you for the comments Jeff.

I do have one N scale area already (the cobble stones) as doing them in Z scale juts didn't show up the stones. I am also going to use N scale train sheds as they will just span 3 tracks.

I would love to have a lattice bridge, but I don't fancy cutting out al the little diamonds. Second choice is a stone built arch with stone walls. i have been looking doe stone walls for other areas of the layout but haven't found anyone who sells them. (I don't want to get into moulding things at this stage of the game. I'm having enough trouble as it is.) However, I may be able to get some stone facing images that will do.

With best wishes and thanks,
Chris.

Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 19, 2010, 04:26:55 pm
Hello everyone.

Just to bring you up to date, I have added a short entry to my diary together with a couple of photos. Things are going well but I am held up waiting for trees. However, not to much to do for the Inverness exhibition which is less than a month away.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 19, 2010, 06:30:48 pm
Try not to wait for trees, they can take a LONG time to arrive!

:D
Title: Re: Bahnhof Breitenfurt - Ost
Post by: Chris on August 23, 2010, 08:35:24 pm
Hello everyone.

Another day, another update. The last few days I have been putting in that great botanical opportunist, gorse. Had a go at painting flowers and made a right mess in places. However, now the paint is dry, much of it had dimmed down. So I will have another go tomorrow. Do have a look.

Jeff. Time is on my side as teh exhibition isn't until 17th September and the trees can be put in right up to the last couple of minutes.

Best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on August 24, 2010, 01:35:46 pm
I really meant it takes a long time for trees to GROW :D , hence a long time to arrive!

I know, poor joke. Anyway, modelers here have always favored things like dried Yarrow sprigs sprayed with water-based adhesive and sprinkled with ground-up foliage foam. All kinds of things are available from a company called Woodland Scenics in the U.S.

Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 24, 2010, 01:46:19 pm
Hi Jeff.

I have this magic tree growth formula. They stay dormant in the ground and then, overnight grown into fully mature trees!

Yes, I have used quite a few Woodland Scenics stuff but the trees are not among them.

I just re-did the gorse flowers and they are looking a lot better (except where I managed to drop blobs of paint in the original application. I also took some different photos and will replace teh originals on teh site with the new ones later today.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on August 24, 2010, 11:05:11 pm
Hi Chris,

Quote from: Chris on August 24, 2010, 01:46:19 pm

I have this magic tree growth formula. They stay dormant in the ground and then, overnight grown into fully mature trees!




Magic tree formula.......mmmm. Sounds like an insurance claim!! I was driving along all of a sudden the tree popped out of nowhere!!! Must be using the same formula. Hahaha.

Looks great. I'm green ( no pun intended) with envy. I haven't start any scenery yet.
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 25, 2010, 12:07:58 am
Hi Andrew.

It's the same stuff that makes bollards jump out into the road!

I too am green (different use of the word here) here as, as the subject implies, I have never modelled scenery before either. It's not quite a difficult as it looks. Don't be envious; if I can do it, so can you.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 26, 2010, 07:19:42 am
Hello everybody.

I've posted yet another update to my webpage. I decided, having taken the baseboard up to my room to work on the wiring, to take a photo of the bit no-one ever sees - the wiring under the board. DCC users, shield your eyes!

Off to hospital today for further tests (I think). Back this evening - I hope.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on August 30, 2010, 10:15:05 pm
Good evening friends.

Although I have been working on the layout, there is not much to see for it. What can be seen includes flowering gorse bushes and a few extra trees. I have added a few photos to my diary including a rather nice one of the right hand end and one of the nightmare known as the wiring (under the baseboard). All the buildings that have lighting are now fitted with LEDs and their roofs have been stuck down. (I haven't done the street as I am going to change the order of the buildings.) So the oily filament lamps left are the external ones. I am deliberately running them at low voltage to prevent burnouts as many of them are no longer available. In fact, if anyone has any spare yard lamps type 4801 (and the equivalent single lamps ones) that they want to sell, please let me know.

With my best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 03, 2010, 06:33:15 pm
Dear Friends,

I've added just one more photograph today. Yesterday I received some yard lights from Model Masters but was not going to do anything with them until after the exhibition. However, the temptation was too great to resist so last night I fitted them and this morning wired them up. Now I am waiting for my daughter's boyfriend to come for tea and I will shift the whole lot downstairs so that I can take a night-time photo and start testing the locos ready for Inverness. :o)

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitenfurt - Ost (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 05, 2010, 09:57:01 pm
Hello everyone.

Another couple of days and yet another update. Earlier today, I offered the two end panels up to the layout to see how they looked with the backdrop in position. They are not quite as pale as I had hoped as I was using a mixing white instead of a proper white. Not my choice but I was buying from the local art studio which is selling off its remaining stock and didn't have any pure white left. The triangular end-pieces are a compromise between nothing and square end-pieces. Nothing would make supporting the backdrop much more difficult while a square shape would box in the layout and make it somewhat claustrophobic.The triangular shape seems to work well. Anyway, have a look and see what you think.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 06, 2010, 02:24:39 am
Umm, perhaps you could use a proof-reader? See this entry in the Sept. 5 post- "the idea of keeping tem full height ". :)

Meanwhile, in my impeccable artistic opinion ( :) ), I think you should continue some small part of the mountain in the left-hand shot onto the side board, no?
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 06, 2010, 08:50:22 am
Hi Jeff. Thank you for responding.
Quote from: Jeff on September 06, 2010, 02:24:39 am
Umm, perhaps you could use a proof-reader? See this entry in the Sept. 5 post- "the idea of keeping tem full height ". :)


You got me a bit puzzled there. That text isn't in the message. (However, I did make a correction to one mis-spelt word.)
QuoteMeanwhile, in my impeccable artistic opinion ( :) ), I think you should continue some small part of the mountain in the left-hand shot onto the side board, no?


I will have another look once the layout is downstairs and I can view it from the front. In practice, it would be very difficult to match the colour now (the colour changes as acrylics dry). Also, having seen some layouts where the background goes round the sides, I don't think it ever works, which was also the artist's opinion.

Anyway, if I still agree that it looks 'wrong' I will consider reducing the height of the side pieces so that the highest point is about tree height. We'll see.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 07, 2010, 12:11:54 am
Dear Friends,

Very short message as I have to be up at 05.20 tomorrow, sorry.

I've added two pictures of entire layout to my website (see signature). Comments welcomed.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 07, 2010, 02:28:53 am
Sounds like you operate on my schedule. Every school day finds me up at about that time :). As for the proof-reader comment, the example was taken from your web site and the section of the Z scale layout. It was meant purely as constructive criticism.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 07, 2010, 06:39:05 am
Hi Jeff.

In this case it's a hospital visit. However, in spite of being retired, I am usually up by 6am.

Thanks for teh clarification re proofing. I'll check it when I get home.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 07, 2010, 01:08:43 pm
Oh! Sorry to hear about the hospital! I hope it's nothing serious. I've seen much more of the inside of hospitals than I ever wanted to, myself, so I know the kind of thing you face.

And in the case of the comment about the scenery background, it's a case of seeing half a mountain on the back sheet and a blank white 'other half' on the side. Maybe you could take one contiguous sheet  and leave the corners rounded?
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 13, 2010, 09:58:17 pm
Hello everybody.

I forgot to mention that I added seven new pictures, all night scenes, to my website (see my sig) back on the 7th. Do have a look; they are different from the usual photos one sees. (sadly, some of the lighting cannot be seen as there must be a broken link somewhere.

The layout is now ready for the exhibition next weekend though there are some problems with it that will need sorting after the event. I will be taking my camera with me to the exhibition and will post more photos on the site next week, this time with trains in them.

With best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 14, 2010, 02:02:16 pm
Chris,

I think I understand the problem you were having with the pictures. It lies in the way that cameras see things when taking a picture. I can't comment specifically, since I have no idea what camera you're using, but you have run afoul of the metering pattern monster. In other words, when you aim the camera at the scene, it is metering the bright spots and adjusting the exposure (as much as it can) for those. This, of course, makes the dimmer areas look like the inside of a coal mine at midnight during a power failure... Doubly unfortunately, the actual lights are so dim that it caused the camera to open up the lens aperature to maximum, which results in a lot of grain in the photo. To boil it all down, for best results in that situation, you need a different camera with better metering pattern control and a thorough understanding of what is going on. Then you can start working around the issues involved in low-light photography.

I guess that second-best would be to get some friend with a major digital SLR to come take the photos for you :)
Title: Re: Breitenfurt - Ost (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 14, 2010, 05:41:26 pm
Hi Jeff.

The camera a an Nikon E5700, used with either spot or weighted metering and set with with manual control of the aperture, ISO value and white balance. I did try a few images using ISO800 but, as you pointed out, the result was far too grainy. The aperture used for teh last seven photos could have been between 2.8 and 8. One limitation over which I have no control is that it appears that the longest possible exposure is a mere 8 seconds. This did lead to some under exposure but I was able to correct that by using Microsoft's Photo Editor (a very simple, but adequate for most of my needs, application) that was an optional part of the Office suite). I cannot remember how much correction was made but I would suggest that gamma would have been no more than 1.45. (If I need more than 2 then the image is rejected and another photo will be taken when I get time.) As you say, I would need a much more expensive camera to get better results.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 15, 2010, 02:04:26 pm
Yeah, I see your problem. Well, part of the problem is also that the metering is locking on the bright lighting units and ignoring the (much) darker background. It's all a matter of way too high a contrast between the light and the dark. You could try some dim fill lighting to lessen that or play with the White Balance. The fact that we now have digital cameras is a plus. We can take 20 shots to check different settings and see the results immediately, without having it cost us money and time to develope pictures and print them.

And, you may want to look at the current version of IrfanView photo editor. It's a lot more capable than Microsoft's offering AND it's free. Once you have that in place, you can start to change gamma, brightness, and contrast.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 15, 2010, 02:56:02 pm
Thanks Jeff.

I was wondering why you had picked up on problems and, having looked back at my original message about these pictures I note that I wrote that "sadly, some of the lighting cannot be seen as there must be a broken link somewhere." That was noting to do with the camera, the shunting lights were not lit anyway. All the other lights showed up fine. I actually do have Irfan as well as a couple of other graphics programs. As I wrote, I find Photo Editor does most of what I want but none of the programs do everything I want!

I'll have another go at the late night scene when the layout gets back home as I have found that there is a 'bulb' setting on teh camera.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 16, 2010, 02:41:31 am
Hehe... That will teach you a lesson about posting things online!

As always, photos are either great or a tragedy based on what YOU want as the outcome. I certainly wasn't trying to complain about it, I was trying to offer some insight from someone who has been taking photos a LONG time...

My own latest fight is trying to calibrate the pictures on the monitor with the pictures as I print them. That's a whole other disaster-in-waiting!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 16, 2010, 08:17:01 am
Oh yes, tell me about it. My prints came out far too dark. If I remember, I add some extra gamma correction to dark images before printing but usually I forget. :o( Even when I do remember they don't print well. I have had my 5700 for several years but it is only recently that I have finally started reading the manual!

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 21, 2010, 12:50:10 am
Dear Friends,

Got back last night from my latest exhibition. The following is a (slightly modified) post that has gone out to a few forums.

Breitenfurt - Ost was in top form with, for the first time, the branch line working (which was a great success with the kids once they noticed it, or a parent pointed it out) and I was able to run 3 trains at once for the first time. There were lots of positive comments about the scenery and the backdrop too, which was most gratifying. I did have a few mishaps, like a couple of locos got 'tired' and there were a few derailments. But on the whole I was very pleased with how it all went.

Now I have to get to work again for Elgin (at the end of November). This requires sorting out a dead block section on station Gleis 1, and a broken feed on the Anschlußgleise (was Nebengleis) Gleis 2. I also need to come up with a simple form of interlocking so that setting up a route does a reset first. Currently, I have to hit reset but occasionally I forget, leaving a block section fed from two controllers at the same time.

Here, for the first time is an overall view of Bahnhof Breitenfurt - Ost as it appears at an exhibition. The front skirt, which acts as a security curtain and carries descriptions of the various trains that can be on show and a list of shows visited so far. It also acts as a cover (required after a case slipped onto the layout on a roundabout last year).

I'm still suffering from the adrenalin of the exhibition - being a lone exhibitor managing power and route selection and controlling 3 trains at once is stressful. I've added one image here and will be posting more images from the exhibition, including all layouts, later.

All the best,
Chris

Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 21, 2010, 01:37:33 am
"a broken feed"

Chris, you could get some very small-gauge stranded wire, if you're not already using it, and it will last longer than solid wire...

And a very nice picture. How about a 'night' shot? :)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on September 21, 2010, 02:00:43 am
Hi Chris,
I agree it looks great. For me I am distracted or drawn to the white ends, which is unusual for me. I like the how you have designed the case, double hinged cover.
Green with envy that you have almost finished your layout proper, now the tinkering begins.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 21, 2010, 10:13:57 am
Hi Jeff,

It is 7/0.2, but the problem was that it had broken at the point where it was soldered to the switch. It's only a temporary control panel and some of the wires are a bit tight. I will add in an extra inch of wire. The dead block in the station may well be due to a dud switch in the signal base. The signal is an old style Marklin one - I have plenty of spares. If it is not that then it will be a blown diode (unlikely). It's not a major problem as there is also a direct feed from the panel which bypasses the signal switch.

The layout is now back on the kitchen table so that I an make a few changes to the scenic area. After that I will have a think about the interlocking (more diodes!).

As far as a night scene is concerned - NO! We were in the brightest room in the exhibition. It was that bright that I was able to take a few photos without the flash, hand held.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 21, 2010, 10:25:16 am
Thank you Andrew. The two ends are a pale grey. As I mentioned earlier (I think) I am not an artist and would have no idea how to bring the backdrop round to the ends. I thought a light grey would be the best option as white would be too garish. I also feel that to bring the backdrop round to the sides it really needs to be a gentle curve. It does not look good on a right angle. I've seen it done and it looked awkward. (Of course, much of the white ends you see are actually the windows and wall behind the layout as the ends slope down to the front.)

Still, there is a lot more work to be done - all the fiddly stuff now; the stuff that can make or break the effect!.

All teh best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 30, 2010, 09:10:15 pm
Hi everyone.

Just a quickie. Breitenfurt - Ost was at an exhibition in Inverness. I haven't been able to write up the show due to my computer's failure. However, I did manage to put a few photos of the layout on the web. See http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20100918-Inverness-TEMP/index.htm . I will do an update as soon as I have my computer fully functional.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 10, 2010, 11:41:53 pm
Dear Friends,

It's been a while since my last post for which I apologise; lots of other stuff keeping me busy. Anyway, I had a defective signal which required that the layout be turned round and I decided that, while I could, I would add a bit more detail to the scenery. Do have a look (link is in my sig), but bear in mind that there is still a lot to do (e.g. train shed, people and traffic for a start). I have an exhibition at the end of the month so I will concentrate in getting the new lighting up and running.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 19, 2010, 11:50:36 am
Dear Friends,

In seven days time I will be packing up the layout and loading the car ready to head off to Elgin for my next exhibition. (I also have another booking for March next year.) So, the layout has been transferred from my workbench to my wife's craft-work table downstairs so that I can give it a thorough cleaning and start testing the locos that I intend to take with me. I will also be adding a few extra touches to the scenery.

However, the reason I am posting this message is that, on the way downstairs I took the opportunity to photograph a 'satellite view' of the layout. I did this once before a couple of years back and thought an update was due. (Incidentally, I don't think I have ever seen such a view before.) No trains of course, and no backdrop. (It wouldn't show up anyway.) Anyway, do have a look, if you are interested. Use the 'Breitenfurt' link in my signature.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on November 22, 2010, 10:33:12 pm
Interesting viewpoint indeed! Does it match the AnyRail drawing? :)

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 22, 2010, 11:04:12 pm
Hi David.

First. I have edited my earlier message and (I hope) corrected all the typos.

I think it directly matches the current AnyRail image. I am constantly tweaking the latter but there will, inevitably, be some discrepancies in the scenic part as that pre-dates the creation of the scenery on the layout itself. Incidentally, did you manage to get the second option to twice the size? One member of another forum said that the satellite effect was even more pronounced as he scrolled across the image. After that I had a spate of looking at satellite views of German stations. Beautiful!

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: WO W on December 10, 2010, 04:40:43 pm
Chris,

Caught you at Elgin. The layout looks good in the flesh!


Steve
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 10, 2010, 05:28:13 pm
Hi Steve. Glad you liked it. Pity about the weather though; it kept a lot of people away. I will be at Elgin again at the end of March, in the TA Centre with Moray MRG.

All the best,
Chris.

[PS. I have just posted my photos from the exhibition. Use one of the links in my sig.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: WO W on December 10, 2010, 05:41:36 pm
Had a good look at your photo's - very good. Yes a real pity about the weather at Elgin - noted the change of venure for the March exhibition.


Steve
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 12, 2010, 12:36:41 am
Hi All.

Just a note to say that I have posted all my photos from Inverness and Elgin on the web. Either link in my signature below will take you there. No diary update at the moment.

Best wishes to you all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on December 12, 2010, 01:13:53 am
Chris,

I think you've done a superior job of layout building and I see why you're always off to exhibitions. Still, I feel I must point out one glaring(!) omission - WHERE IS THE POSTING OF THE AnyRail file??? :D

No, no!!! I mean WHERE is the posting of the file ON YOUR SITE? We need to encourage people to try AnyRail, even if it's only to view the track plan!

(p.s. I would Glue everything in site before posting it, just to save it from accidental changes)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 12, 2010, 09:02:40 am
Hi Jeff.

Thanks for the compliment. Much appreciated.

I hadn't thought of posting the .any file - good thinking. I'll have a look at doing it. But I'm not sure why I need to Glue everything. If somebody downloads it and messes around with it there is no way that they can corrupt the original file. (I have already had one person download the file so that they can rework it for their own purposes.)

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on December 12, 2010, 04:54:31 pm
Well, I figured that someone would then have to download and learn AR in order to mess with it :). That gives us another convert, since AR is the best track planning software in the world.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 13, 2010, 11:40:14 am
Hi Jeff.

It was a bit awkward to do it as the symmetry of the header had been honed down to a minimum code. However, there is a link there though I am not convinced that it is a 'user friendly' one. Maybe I need to re-think it.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on December 13, 2010, 01:30:11 pm
Chris,

Just noticed something you may want to address- the two photos in the Sept. 5 post really should be flipped in position (second->first) in order to show the backgrounds in proper relation. On the other issue, I don't see any links but the ones that have been there all along.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 13, 2010, 01:45:03 pm
Hi Jeff.
Quote from: Jeff on December 13, 2010, 01:30:11 pm
Just noticed something you may want to address- the two photos in the Sept. 5 post really should be flipped in position (second->first) in order to show the backgrounds in proper relation.

I agree. My logic was that the left hand end of the layout should be on the left and the right on the right. However, logic does not take into account aesthetics. I will do as you suggest.
QuoteOn the other issue, I don't see any links but the ones that have been there all along.

It was like that for me last night and then again this morning. However, I just reloaded it and the link was there. D**n cache! Just keep trying (maybe Shift-f5). Or clean out the cache.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on December 13, 2010, 09:34:04 pm
Hi everyone.

At last I have updated my layout diary. Basically it is a one-man wash-up meeting for the last exhibition. It has a couple of images but they are also on the exhibition report page.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 03, 2011, 03:02:11 pm
Hello everyone. As I am not in a design stage at the moment, I haven't used AnyRail (though I do keep it up to date) for quite a while and, as a result (and due to other circumstances), I haven't been on any of the forums or worked on my layout for a while. However, yesterday I decided to take a few photos of the 'traffic' that is starting to build up on the roads and in the goods yard. (No people yet, though.) Anyway, I have posted these pictures on my web-page. Most of the items are made by a small German company called Trafofuchs and the detail is really good.

With my best wishes to everyone,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 20, 2011, 01:47:25 pm
Dear Friends,

I've not done much on the railway side of things in the last few weeks but have been bringing it to life with horse drawn carriages and wagons from Preiser and Trafofuchs as well as adding a few people (a most frustrating task as I get more superglue on my fingers that on the layout!). No photos of the people yet but but a few of the traffic can be seen at the usual address (below). Do have a look.

All the best to you all, and happy modelling,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 20, 2011, 02:06:06 pm
Chris,

To my own surprise, I actually have a couple of comments. First, a really good quality pair of tweezers with what is called a 'bent tip' will ease your gluing problems. I say this as an N scale modeler with large fingers :) . That and keeping a small bottle of nail polish remover handy...

Second, I notice on the track plan image that the stub siding just to the right of the main station platform seems awfully short. I can't really tell, since it's all in Z, but it looks too short for most engines.

Well, must run.

Later!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 20, 2011, 04:19:23 pm
Hi Jeff. Thanks for the response.

I have tried using my Lindstrom pliers, both with the bendy end and straight pointed. The latter help as long as one can hold them absolutely steady for 30-40 seconds. The former were not so helpful. If there are no obstructions I use my bare fingers (hence the Superglue). Next month I shall order a load more people ready to start populating the platforms as far as I can for the moment. (I still have a footbridge and a train shed to add).

The stub siding is 135mm long including the buffer stop so can handle all the locos except, possible, the BR53.0 (1'C)D h4v 3'2'T35K which only just makes it on the turntable. As it is used purely to get locos to and from the shed 'tis OK.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 20, 2011, 08:04:22 pm
Ok, Chris :)

Still, I have the feeling that you just aren't in possession of the right pair of tweezers. I have a nice pair, stainless steel with a bent nose and, importantly, a tab that locks them closed on an object until released. Glue or superglue, neither present a big problem. If you're having trouble with the superglue itself (not unheard of), then give a try to what is known as 'gap filling superglue'. It dries about as fast as your glue, but doesn't dribble or run like the usual thin superglue, so it might keep the stuff off your fingers.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 20, 2011, 10:19:31 pm
Thanks Jeff. Just bought a pair on line. I will also see if I can get a connector pin extractor as they have a shaped jaw to go round the pin that would be perfect for holding very small objects. E.G. the 2mm high birds that I have been trying to stick down.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 20, 2011, 11:30:47 pm
Ah! There's your problem!

Never use 2mm birds, always hold out for the 2.5mm ones!

:)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on February 21, 2011, 04:02:59 am
Hi Chris,
Have you tried the super glue gel? I find it bonds better plus it gives you more time before bonding, should you have to move it and there are no rivers of glue when you only need a drop.
Your layout is looking good. I haven't done much on mine of late, our garden is taking a more of my time.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 22, 2011, 10:05:09 am
Hi Andrew. No. I did use some years ago to repair a teapot. It was the only time that Super glue worked for me though I am having better luck now. However, I doubt anyone here sells it. Anyway, thanks for the suggestion. I'll see if I can get some on line.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on February 22, 2011, 01:41:55 pm
Hi Chris,
Most of the Sth Aust. Railway model kits, which are cast, are made from polyurethane resin. So, you have a choice of either assemble with super glue or it will invariably fall apart sometime sooner or later. Epoxies sometimes work but not always.
Looking forward to your next set of photos.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 22, 2011, 03:07:29 pm
Andrew,

There is a glue that is tailor-made for your kits. It's available in the U.S. and as I hope to you. I'm sure you can find it online. It's called Gorilla Glue. I mention it because it's a Urethane glue. No, not specifically made for Urethane, but made from Urethane. All the home improvement outlets and lumber yards carry it (even in the checkout line at the supermarket :) ). The only special thing required is a little dampness. Yes, water. one side of a joint needs to be damp in order to work best. Once the stuff sets, you could park your favorite car on it and not worry.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 22, 2011, 03:35:48 pm
Hi Jeff.

Yes, they are in the UK at http://uk.gorillaglue.com/ (http://uk.gorillaglue.com/) but no mention of Urethane. So maybe the specific glue you are referring to is not available here. I tired to find safety data but was not impressed when none appeared to be available in spite of there being a link on Google.

Best wishes,
Chris.

[Later: Try http://www.gluegorilla.co.uk/ (http://www.gluegorilla.co.uk/) instead.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 22, 2011, 06:13:17 pm
Trust me, Chris- Gorilla Glue is Urethane-based. It's a well-known staple over here and any woodworker (especially) will have several bottles on the shelf. It's the best general-purpose adhesives there is. What is is really nice about it is that it doesn't become brittle as it cures. There is always a tiny bit of give to it. This makes it excellent for your application.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Steve Raiford on February 22, 2011, 06:35:31 pm
Chris & Jeff

There are now a number of different adhesives under the name "Gorilla" sold in the Florida market. Specifically which product you are talking about?

I have used "Gorilla Glue" for wood and furniture repair, and there is no question about its strength, but I found the foaming of any excess glue to be a real pain.

I have no experience with gorilla epoxy, super glue, wood glue or any of the tape products.

Thanks

Steve Raiford
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 22, 2011, 07:05:06 pm
I was really referring to the original glue. It's true that excess can cause foaming, but if applied to a 2mm tall bird or other figure on the point of a toothpick, I think that becomes a non-issue.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 24, 2011, 10:57:43 pm
Many thanks for the hints and tips. As of yesterday I am the proud owner of two clamping tweezers and three tubes of Super Glue gel. I'm short of people to put on the layout at the moment but did try three and it was perfect. The bird will be a bit more difficult as a) I cannot find it and b) it is to go on a chimney top, not the ground! I have 50 people on order and will have another 50 in a couple of months time so I will have a busy station when I am done with it. Before I can plant other people around the layout, I will have to decide what to do with the bare painted areas of ground.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on February 24, 2011, 11:47:14 pm
Chris,

"The bird will be a bit more difficult as a) I cannot find it "

Umm, it's flown the coop? :)

As far as bare painted ground, it depends a great deal on what you mean by that. If it's grassy or scrub, people often use ground foam mixed with a little thinned out white glue of some kind. For real bare earth, I favor applying a fresh layer of paint and immediately adding a topping of sifted real dirt, if you can find some of the proper tint. Then, when all is dry, simply turning the layout upside down (outdoors, of course) should rid you of excess dirt (and anything else loose that you were looking for a reason to replace)(wink, wink, nudge, nudge).
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on February 24, 2011, 11:58:25 pm
Hi Jeff.

Most of the bare board will just have loose ballast (glued down of course) scattered across it (and then the loose stuff hoovered up through some old tights - waste not want not). That pretty well covers the whole layout. I've decided to shift one of the signals (track 2 down starter) and may do the same for track 1 as well. Also, I need to add a twin arm home signal on the entry from the branch line - I forgot all about that.

That's it for now, and off to bed.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 24, 2011, 07:29:45 pm
Dear Friends,

If anyone here lives near Elgin (Scotland). There is an exhibition this weekend (April 26-27) and Breitenfurt will be there. DV.

It was all a bit of a rush and a couple of days ago I manages to burn out five turnout motors in the hidden sidings. Fortunately they are all-but-one trailing points so am able to go ahead. This will lead to simplifying the track layout there and some electrical redesign. Ao, Anyrail will be pressed into service again after a long hiatus.

Best wishes to all,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 24, 2011, 10:55:39 pm
You'll like the improvements, Chris. AnyRail is an even better choice!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 29, 2011, 06:26:27 pm
Dear Friends,

Last weekend's exhibition went pretty well. I had to retire a couple of G8.1s fairly early on but the remaining one worked fine with 12 2-axle wagons with few problems in spite of my poor track-laying. In spite of the baseboard being on a slope one of my pacifics (S 3/6) happily managed 7 coaches. (The most I have ever managed was 9 Bavarian 4-axle coaches.) I wonder if I could do better with a few drops of oil around the rolling stock; nine would be most impressive. There were many positive comments and the kids were fascinated by the branch line even though I only had one train on it this time. Got to find a way to stop them coming round the back to look though.

One thing that went down well was the "Spot the ..." activity that I initiated after one child spotted all the birds unprompted. So we had spot the birds/sheep/climbers. Some kids were really good at it while others had to be prompted almost to the item itself! Maybe I should do this more often.

Anyway, I am delighted to tell you that eight photos are up on my site at
http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20110326-Moray/ . Do have a look. The rest of the layouts will start coming next week.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 30, 2011, 01:54:29 am
Chris,

Lubricant choice becomes more and more important as the scale shrinks. Thank goodness a number of super-light plastic-friendly oils are available! Maybe you could open a bottle and leave it on the layout overnight? That would keep from over-oiling anything :)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on April 03, 2011, 08:22:26 pm
Chris,

Good show with the show!

On the lube problem, on old-style optical machinery - jig boring/jig grinding and optical measuring machines  - I avoided any liquid lubricants like the plague. That stuff invariably attracts and retains dust!
Dow-Corning makes a special dry lubricant for "fine and critical" applications, it's called Molykote Z-Powder. Not cheap but the best stuff I've come across for non-liquid applications. Hope that helps.

Cheers

HJ
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on April 03, 2011, 10:25:21 pm
Thank you Jeff and H-J.

The general consensus appears to be to avoid oils and go with grease. However, the Molycote sounded interesting until I looked at the price. You are right it IS expensive. A 10oz (c. 280g) bottle was GBP70 and a 1kg tin GBP62! And I know they don't use it at my old workplace so that is out as well. I'll keep on looking, just in case.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on April 03, 2011, 11:24:53 pm
Hi Chris,
Have you tried graphite powder?? 20 years ago I worked on the production line making lead acid batteries. The Tekmax machine, which is a lead plate compiler, needed a dry lubricate otherwise the lead oxide dust from the lead plate clogged everything, and yes the dust is not good for your health.
Yours,
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on April 03, 2011, 11:40:45 pm
Funnily enough, I was pondering looking that up when  your message came through. My only worry was that graphite is conductive and I wondered if that woudl have an adverse outcome. Probably OK on wagons and coaches though, but NOT locos!

Another, unrelated, avenue I have been pursuing is the use of lead to weight the wee 2 axle wagons. I have done this with several of my open wagons with loads (Märklin 80315 (S335), Insider model 2005) and have had far fewer derailments on my pretty lousy trackwork. However, many of the wagons have the body welded to the chassis (e.g. vans, loco tenders) which makes it pretty impossible to insert the lead. (Vans with sliding doors may be easier by using two smaller pieces of lead and gluing the to each end of the van.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on April 04, 2011, 01:54:36 am
Chris,

I just looked up "the next best thing" ;) which in this case would be super fine graphite powder, generally used to lubricate tumbler locks and such.
That might be available at your local hardware store, this is the reference link to the product in question (http://www.homehardware.ca/en/rec/index.htm/Hardware/Automotive/Lube-Products/Graphite/Graphite/LUBRICANT-GRAPHITE-POWDER-6-5G/_/N-ntjiv/R-I8640303). Even a small quantity like that should last you for a long time. AND the price is much less. :) :)

Cheers

HJ
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on April 04, 2011, 08:37:14 am
Thanks HJ

I bought some of that stuff about 40 years ago when our front door cylinder lock was giving problems. Worked first time. Used it one and I'm sure it is still kicking around but goodness knows where.

Local hardware store? I'll try the Skye Home Entertainment shop (big enough for 5 customers at a time, at a push, and see if he has some. That shop is like the Tardis and seems to have everything the local supermarket doesn't.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on April 05, 2011, 12:44:21 am
Chris, the other way is to coat it using a HB pencil. At least you have control as to the amount. I use the pencil on my KD no5 couplers rather than powdered graphite.
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on April 12, 2011, 10:57:45 pm
Hmmmm, yes. I had wondered about that. Somewhere I have a 6B pencil! Seriously, I have already bought some Kadee Greas-em, so I will try that and, if I get in a mess, I'll go for a soft pencil. Yes, thanks for the suggestion.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 19, 2011, 11:31:25 pm
Hello everyone.
It's been a long time since last I posted. Basically I got burned out so nothing happened over the summer. However, I have an exhibition coming up next month and I needed to push forward with a number of changes. I have replaced all 5 burned turnouts, removed some of the spurs these turnouts accessed, and done  the appropriate re-wiring. The removal of the spurs also allowed me to lay out the route selection buttons into a more ergonomic layout (thank goodness). All this threw up the fact that my wiring was not well documented. The diagrams were mostly accurate but there was no diagram for the layout of the hundreds of terminals under the board. Also item IDs needed to be consistent, getting rid of all the original IDs that I had used. All this is under weigh.

All this means that I am back using AnyRail. I had been off it so long that I had forgotten how to use it!!!!  Soon caught up though, thanks to AnyRail's excellent specification. So, I thought I would put up the current station schematic; this may give some of you some ideas about labelling.

Finally, my diary has updated at last as well.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 20, 2011, 11:05:23 pm
Glad to see you back at the important things in life (railroading!). I thought you were having so much fun operating the layout that you couldn't find time to get into the forums :)  Big things are coming up in AR and I think you'll find a use for them.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 20, 2011, 11:30:23 pm
Sounds good Jeff. I have been playing with AR as I amend my drawings. I've even managed to use layers! After this autumn's expos I will start turning my mind to an N scale layout. So I will look forward to what happens in AR. Still haven't fixed which track I will use though I do have a lot of Peco (55 and 80) but don't like the idea of fitting all those point motors. Do they do above board ones? I'll have to have a look.

With best wishes from a very wet Skye,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 20, 2011, 11:41:00 pm
Well, Chris, things have been rather damp here in the States, as well. Last I heard, my area was some 20" over the yearly average and we're supposed to have rain for the next 6 days :( along with below-average temps. If this is global warming, I'd hate to see global cooling!
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 20, 2011, 11:55:32 pm
Global warming will give us much more rain whereas global cooling would give us much better weather. This was borne out in those years when we have massive volcanic activity, e.g. Mt St Helen's. We had super summers that year.

Having got the expo bug, I am thinking of producing a round the room N scale layout that can be turned inside out so that I can play with it at home as well as being able to show it -- if I live long enough.

Best wishes,
Chris.

Attached: Current version of Hidden Sidings Schematic. Note the letter pairs that define all feasible routes.
[Added later: The coloured discs represent the route selection buttons. Loosely, red=cw, green=ccw & yellow=spurs. Weather SSW gusting to >40mph, heavy rain! Impressive.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on September 21, 2011, 04:19:46 pm
They also say that it could cause the Gulf stream current to shut down, which would cause another Ice Age. Mother Earth has her ways of self-correcting, given time. Oh, yes... a p.s.- don't forget to post us an up to date track plan when you're done ripping things out.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 21, 2011, 06:14:46 pm
Hi Geoff.

True about the North Atlantic Drift. That would give us very cold winters with possible icing over of the sea. It was a bit like that when we moved up here 33 years ago.

Here's the latest track plan file. Some of it is still to be updated; other bits are a head of me.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on September 27, 2011, 11:44:24 pm
Apologies for the few hours during which images on my site were not available. This was the result of a incorrect code in my .htaccess file which has now been corrected. Recently my site has been flooded with hundreds of automated hits and I am trying to find an effective way to block them. If anyone feels that they can help, please do contact me. With best wishes, Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 03, 2011, 01:15:36 am
That one's difficult for the site owner, Chris. It usually is handled by the server owner, at least on the servers I use it is. My provider handles spam blockng, anti-virus, and firewall defenses. Send him a note that you're suffering a DDoS attack. I guarantee he'll understand the issue.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 03, 2011, 09:21:29 pm
Hi Jeff.

I mentioned it, in passing, on the trouble ticket for another problem. It's not really a DoS attack as the calls are relatively slow (2-3 per second) so don't affect site accessibility. It can be solved using .htaccess but it is a bit tedious. It's just a pity that .htaccecc for the domain doesn't act on the subdomains. Anyway, this is a bit off topic (my fault) so best left for now.

Moving on topic. I've just finished a footbridge for my passengers. Far from perfect but quite a job doing all the kit bashing involved and has taught me a few lessons. Pictures on website.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 04, 2011, 12:50:23 am
The only lesson I learned from kitbashing and scratch-building ladders and railings (admittedly in N scale) is that one should buy a commercial finished product unless one is a masochist :D
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 04, 2011, 12:52:47 am
There isn't one! That's why I required 2 kits.
Best wishes, Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 04, 2011, 07:53:20 pm
Ah! The joy of building in a scale that doesn't have full commercial support :) I remember how that used to be n N scale- I got my first N scale stuff in 1962. At that point, it was 'sort of' N scale.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 10, 2011, 12:36:59 pm
Hi Jeff. Even with full commercial support, I doubt anyone would make a bridge like this, spanning 1+3 tracks with 1+2+2 flights of steps and at this height. The basic Märklin kit is twice a high and can span 2 or 4 tracks. It's almost more suited to N scale!

It's been a bit of a struggle over the last few days but I've posted daily updates with a few images added. Not the world's most interesting except, possibly, for the bird's eye view (less bridge 'cos it would fall off.
   All the best,
      Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 10, 2011, 02:09:58 pm
"The basic Märklin kit is twice a high"

Of course it all depends on what they're modeling. It may be that they picked a tall prototype. So... better publish yours as an engineering standard for  your railroad :) In real life, it's likely that there are no two bridges exactly the same height, though there are certain minimum clearances needed. The situation with tunnel portals is similar, but much more critical. Consider the situation here in the U.S.- the railroads can't use the very tall Superliner passenger cars anywhere east of the Mississippi River because tunnels, bridges, and (yes) pedestrian walk-bridges don't have the clearance for them.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 10, 2011, 03:26:02 pm
Hi Jeff.

I take it that if the superliners cannot be used then doubling up of containers is also a no-no. I used my memory (flawed) of Aviemore station in the Highlands where there is no catenary involved and the footbridge is not very high. Still more clearance that I have left. When the British railways were electrified I think there would have been a lot of lowering of trackbeds and raising of structures.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 10, 2011, 11:31:50 pm
Actually, Chris, there are many routes where double stack containers are just fine- they simply designed the flatcars they travel on with a 40 foot well in the center. The lowered center section drops the total load height when two containers are loaded. Unfortunately (for them), passengers object to being stacked like that :)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 10, 2011, 11:43:45 pm
I'm sure I saw double decker coaches in the East Coast. Maybe they are limited to commuter trains. Containers are 8ft high which is the ceiling height in UK houses. Germans have double decker coaches where the lower deck is down steps from the carriage doors. I would have thought double deck coaches would be common in US long distance trains. Obviously it would be difficult to fit then with a vista dome, though the whole top deck could become a vista deck.

Sorry, it's a bit messy but I typing in my sleep!!

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 11, 2011, 12:39:26 am
Hmm. All I can say is that there are a few on specialty service (Auto-Train from Virginia to Florida and also various commuter runs that are local to some cities), but not in general service. These days there are all kinds of things to be seen in isolated instances. It's just like your 'people bridges', headroom is scarce as the area you're in gets older. I know that it seems otherwise to me, too having grown up in the Northeast U.S., but those big passenger cars don't fit through the tunnels well. I can certainly understand the railroads' reluctance to expand them! I grew up near a place where to save that cost, they rerouted the track through a slot cut in rock 100 feet thick, bypassing an old tunnel that was only 50 feet away.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 13, 2011, 03:40:26 pm
Dear Friends,
Just a short note. The layout is all ready for it trip to the Dundee expo tomorrow. I took a few photos shortly before and after closing it up. Sadly they didn't come out too well; I don't think the auto focus was working properly. Still they do give an idea of where I am at.
All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on October 13, 2011, 05:07:17 pm
Good luck Chris!

Looks good.

I was at a show last weekend in Belgium with a friend's layout, and it's always a big question if everything works as expected ;)

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 13, 2011, 05:32:28 pm
Dear David,
Thanks for your message.
Quote from: David on October 13, 2011, 05:07:17 pm... it's always a big question if everything works as expected.
Oooer! Tell me about it. I've had my bad exhibitions. :(

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on October 13, 2011, 11:58:55 pm
Quote from: Chris on October 10, 2011, 11:43:45 pm
I'm sure I saw double decker coaches in the East Coast. Maybe they are limited to commuter trains. Containers are 8ft high which is the ceiling height in UK houses. Germans have double decker coaches where the lower deck is down steps from the carriage doors. I would have thought double deck coaches would be common in US long distance trains. Obviously it would be difficult to fit then with a vista dome, though the whole top deck could become a vista deck.

Sorry, it's a bit messy but I typing in my sleep!!

Best wishes,
Chris.


Hi Chris,

Check out the Amtrak Superliners (http://www.google.ca/search?q=amtrak+superliner&hl=en&biw=1916&bih=904&prmd=imvns&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=yFyXTt-HGoGaiQKXqYyuDQ&sqi=2&ved=0CEkQsAQ), that's the American example, certainly used on the long runs across the continent.

The luxury train in Canada called the Rocky Mountaineer has double decker cars for those people who can afford the Gold Service. I shot quite a few videos of those trains, there in the Rocky Mountaineer Album (http://vimeo.com/album/101192)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 14, 2011, 12:14:29 am
Hi Hans-Joerg. Thank you for that. I will look them up when I get back. The name TriRail comes to mind, probably by West Palm Beach, FA.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 14, 2011, 01:46:14 am
"certainly used on the long runs across the continent"

Sorry HJ, but if you consult Amtrak's published schedules, you'll find that east of the Mississippi River there is maybe one run that uses Double-high cars. That one is the special trains that carry passengers AND their automobiles to and from Virginia to central Florida. This saves people from having to deal with driving that nearly 1000 miles down and back, not to mention having to rent a car while visiting Disney World and the other resorts. There are also several routes (not owned by Amtrak) that use the double-ended commuter train version, but they are strictly limited to areas around Miami. I know that Metro-North (commuter trains around NYC) use older equipment. It's VERY much older- They have FL-9's (the passenger diesel AND electric version of the F-9) and up until the past 10 or 15 years, at least, they were using heavy-weight passenger cars.  For runs that go towards New Haven, CT, they use multi-unit commuter equipment. The same ones are used for any train going north along the Hudson River so long as they don't go further than Croton-Harmon station. They're fun to ride (since you can get right up to the front door with its glass window), but they lack the decades of 'character' that the old coaches have.

I was always sad that passenger service on the west bank of the Hudson didn't survive into modern times. There's some spectacular scenery to be appreciated from there...
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on October 14, 2011, 02:36:25 am
Jeff,

That's why I carefully phrased it
Quotecertainly used on the long runs across the continent.
That isn't the same as coast to coast, it's just West Coast to Chicago as the hub . The Empire Builder, the California Zephyr, the Southwest Chief.

The Sunset Limited actually runs from Coast to Coast - starts ends at New Orleans - and connects to the Texas Eagle which again heads to Chicago.

All of them use the Superliner cars.  ;)  ;)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 14, 2011, 03:24:55 pm
Sorry, HJ, but I found this statement "that's the American example, certainly used on the long runs across the continent" a little ambiguous :) While I agree that TECHNICALLY speaking, "coast to coast" can be used when talking about the U.S. Pacific coast to the Gulf of Mexico or to the coast of Lake Michigan, I assure you that we don't often use that term for those areas. When we speak of coast to coast, it applies to Pacifc to Atlantic (or the other way round, depending on location and context.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on October 14, 2011, 04:37:07 pm
Hey Jeff, the point is that double-decker cars are being used by Amtrak on plenty of there real long haul trains. In addition to the WestCoast to Chicago/New Orleans trains, they also show up on the Seattle to LA "Coast Starlight".

Humour on

I guess the consider the East to be one big commuter district.

Humour off

;) ;D ;D
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 21, 2011, 09:05:26 am
Dear Friends,

The Dundee expo went really well with very few spontaneous derailments and coupling failures. I did do a few rear-enders though! Several people opined, on the basis of plenty of detail and the tiny size of the trains, that Breitenfurt was the best layout there. (Smug feeling.) No awards tho'. I'm just about back down to earth.

I've put up three photos of the layout on my diary/blog. Some more will be available later but they won't be very good as the autofocus AND exposure controls were both misbehaving. I think it's something that I am doing, but don't know what. Anyway, do have a look.

All the best,
Chris.

PS. The images now download correctly.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on October 21, 2011, 05:13:25 pm
Congratulations!

I know the feeling (somewhat) as I often assist a friend who travels around with his successful layout...

David.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 22, 2011, 12:03:18 am
Psst! Chris! This is from the Oct. 9th: "If I cannot find the problem han it is a case running loco up. ". Whilst not being the picky type about necessarily understandable English myself, I think it may read better with a bit of editing. Just thought you would want to know... Put the best foot forward and all that.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on October 24, 2011, 12:02:19 am
Yes, well, /mea culpa/. I found the problem and was able to run trains with the loco pushing up the slope. The problem was caused by two touching wires if I remember correctly. It was all very chaotic towards the end.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on October 24, 2011, 02:18:00 pm
I find that in chaotic times a written list of (pick your preference): to do, shopping items, people to meet, etc. can be a life-saver. It's never fun to forget something important when you get overloaded by details! :)

Above post wasn't a criticism, just a chance to keep your head above water in lieu of a proof-reader...
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 17, 2011, 12:20:20 pm
Dear Friends,

Latest exhibition (Elgin Modelfair, last weekend) passed without too many problems!

However, a while ago I was asked if I had any videos of Bahnhof Breitenfurt - Ost to which I replied 'No' as I didn't have a video camera. However, a friend of mine, Gerry Coogan, came to see the layout at the Elgin MRC exhibition and took a few ad hoc videos which are now on Youtube. Rather than clutter up the forum with a load of links, I have set up a draft webpage with the necessary links on my site. You can see it at http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20111112-Elgin/videos.htm . It's a bit of a mess but I will tidy it up later. Note: there are no internal links to this page, only the one above. That will be remedied later.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 17, 2011, 01:22:50 pm
Chris,

What do you use for creating and maintaining your website?
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 17, 2011, 01:54:13 pm
Hi Jeff.

CSE HTML Validator V.11.0 coding in XHTML 1.0 transitional or strict.

Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 17, 2011, 11:57:08 pm
Take a look at NetObjects Fusion some time. You can build an entire web site in an hour, complete with a picture album, videos, and all the links and bells and whistles. It makes changing or maintaining a site a real snap.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on November 18, 2011, 12:23:59 am
Yes Jeff,  :D :D

I've been using NOF since ver.5 and it is not quite that simple.  ;) ;) A kin to AnyRail: the bare basics are a piece of cake, but getting the full features takes a bit more work.

Chris,

My suggestion on NOF: download the manual and after reading the basic stuff head over to the NOF forum. That will give you a feel for the possibilities and the complexity.
There's also a slew of tutorials for the "not so obvious" features.

Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 18, 2011, 01:27:41 pm
I haven't been using it for that long, but it's been some years of use. Yes, as with any other program, if you want to do very complicated things, then it takes more effort than if you want to do finger-painting. However, it's the closest thing I've found to a drag and drop editor, while it does the heavy lifting of code generation. I spent the better part of a year collecting HTML editors for a review and didn't find anything (I could trust) that was any better. There was one other pretty good one, but it needed some skilled bug hunting and a new edition and it was published by a Chinese company, which is a serious minus, to me.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 18, 2011, 03:47:58 pm
Hi Guys.

I have only ever used three editors (apart from swearing at the code produced by a couple of WYSIWYG ones) namely Netscape 3 (or 4, cannot remember), Hotdog 4 to 6 (which I would still be using if I hadn't lost the key) and then the CSE one mentioned. I also use Microsoft's Write for live tweeks. I like to have total control over my code and for years kept all my pages below 32kB for the sake of those who were on dial-up (5% of users this year) or who paid by the kB.

You will note that most of my pages will display on an 800x600 screen without horizontal scrolling. This resolution is becoming more common again, presumably because of the increasing number of tablets and phones using the Web. The next size up, 1024x768 is used by about 20% of people viewing my site. I have broken this 800x600 rule for images as most browsers will resize images to fit the screen.

So, call me old fashioned, or a geek, if you like. It may take slightly longer but I can tweek and CSS to my heart's content. Incidentally that video page took about 10 minutes to create, albeit that some code was lifted from another page's header section. I'll tidy it up later. [Incidentally, there is now a link from my diary and the links on the page now work.]

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 19, 2011, 03:25:05 am
I also like to tweak things occasionally, but lately I've leant more towards getting it done and online, while trusting NObjF to keep me honest :). Mostly because I know it will, I admit.I stopped worrying about picture size some time ago. I know that as 4G continues to spread, it will become less a problem.

Now to something closer to subject: Do you really think that you can classify your current layout as your "first"? I figure you've changed out most everything but the base benchwork (and even some of that... :D
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 19, 2011, 09:29:26 am
Hi Jeff.
4G may be spreading but we don't even have 3G where I live. With one or two possible exceptions I know pretty well where every mobile site is in the Highlands (I used to work on them) and I can assure you that, apart from the towns, the majority, or large minority, of highlanders do not have mobile access. The government has a totally underfunded scheme to bring "broadband" (for which read "24/7") access to every home in the Highlands. It's pie in the sky.

First layout? Do I detect the cleaner's broom here? Yes, it is my first layout. Compared with the original concept (forget that 1990 design; that was a train set with no scenery apart from two platforms.) There have been only minor changes in concept. This is my first attempt at modelling a railway running through a plausible environment. Some changes had to be made because my original ideas were not possible and some have been/will be made as I learn more about German practice. I am on Rev.4.1 but compare that with the plan at the bottom left of my 2008 webpage. Most of the major changes to that plan were made before the baseboard was assembled. 4.2 will be realised over the next few months and is a change to the hidden sidings to remove conflicting routes. Definitely not a cleaner's broom.

I am hoping that my first layout/model railway will be completed some time next year. Then I shall start on my second. Then I shall start a new topic and start using AnyRail in earnest again.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 19, 2011, 02:30:08 pm
Ok, Chris, I'll let you off the hook  ;). It just seemed as if you would have built some other layout sometime during your life. I know I have! Have you considered a multi-section slightly larger layout? I know you were striving for the maximum operation and portability, but maybe once Breitenfurt is done you can build something to leave up and running at home...
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 19, 2011, 05:15:52 pm
That's the idea Jeff. The only problem is that it has to be able to be assembled and transported by one person. I do have some ideas floating around somewhere in the voids in my brain and all will be revealed once I firm up on them.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 19, 2011, 07:13:28 pm
How about a box about the size of your current one, but a little taller. Make the layout the same size as your current one, but folded up the long way. Then you'll have twice as much room to railroad without increasing the size of your kit much. It would mean more setup/breakdown time, but with trial and error and some practice, I bet it's not a big increase.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 19, 2011, 09:23:58 pm
Hi Jeff.

That was the original idea with my present layout but got dropped. My next layout will be N scale and a totally different concept that I have still to finalise in my mind. I want to be able to use it at home and at exhibitions but I do not want to operate it from the front. There were a couple of layouts at the Utrecht Eurospoor which were ruined by the operators stopping the visitors from seeing the best parts of the layouts. You will see what I mean when I have managed to put up a webpage.

Incidentally, the freight train in the photo is the first one that I have run at exhibitions that stayed on the rails (well, mostly).

All the best,
Chris.

Memo to self. Get the concept worked out. Post Utrecht, Dundee and Elgin expo reports.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 20, 2011, 08:50:50 pm
Yeah, that is more or less the biggest complaint I have with Z scale- every tiniest error is magnified into a train wreck. N scale is crowding the line (or was at one time). Maybe Z will mature into something really reliable, but it's been around long enough that it really should be better (IMO). I'll look forward to seeing what you come up with.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 20, 2011, 10:00:20 pm
The fault isn't with Z, it was my clumsiness and not realising that I needed to check every joint before pinning down. There is a new track just on the market that may be better.

Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on November 21, 2011, 12:07:56 am
And I would complain about the price, if I didn't understand entirely why prices are high... :) When I think about trying to scratchbuild in Z I get headaches. Actually doing it would give me nightmares. Even in N, I have issues with building stairs and ladders :( . Now I find that the only hobby shop within 40 miles is gone. Moved away to somewhere less rural, I suppose.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 14, 2012, 11:43:56 pm
Dear Friends,

Just a very short (copy and paste, sorry) message as I have a lot to do before I leave for next weekend's exhibition. I have posted five more photos of my layout, five by moonlight and one after the clouds have covered the moon. I do promise that there will be some daytime photos soon (and, maybe, a couple of videos). Anyway, do have a look at http://tiny.cc/breitenfurt/ .

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Andrew on March 15, 2012, 07:18:00 am
Hi Chris,
Your layout has come a long way and it looks great.
Pity I cannot say the same. House and garden seem to be taking most of my time at the moment, although Easter looks promising!!!
Look forward to seeing the photos from the exhibition.
Andrew
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 15, 2012, 10:14:45 am
Thanks Andrew. I have to admit that I gave up on our garden long ago - too much rain + not enough drainage! Good luck with yours (when is Easter????). I must try to come here more often. I just have so many things to do.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 15, 2012, 02:17:05 pm
Chris, I think I have a suggestion about your unresolved questions involving doing a new layout- I think you should design a layout that is in effect a module. Then design a surrounding layout for your home that is an extension of the module. That way you can take the module to show off at shows and then have the expanded layout to have fun with at home.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 15, 2012, 02:24:35 pm
Hi Jeff. Thanks for the comment. You are not far off the ideas in the back of my mind. I do not have time to build 'two' railways so my idea is to have a station module (or modules) that can be inserted into the rest of a loop either way round, thus allowing viewing and operation from inside or outside the complete layout. However, with the deterioration in my eyesight it may be too late anyway. (I am seeing the ophthalmologist next month.)

Best wishes,
Chris
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 15, 2012, 02:57:20 pm
Sorry to hear about the vision problems. Another good reason to move from Z to N, hmm?
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on March 15, 2012, 05:00:58 pm
From Z to N?  Changing from electric ants to electric june bugs?  :o :o
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 15, 2012, 06:45:05 pm
Exactly! Chris has no room for OO, so N it should be. Besides, he wants to be able to transport the module to train shows in the family vehicle, not an 18-wheeler :). And it's 'electric FLEAS' to 'ladybugs'....

@Chris,
Don't put off that visit. If it's progressing like that, the first thing that would pop into the opthamologist's head is 'macular degeneration'. I have a friend about your age with the same problem. There are some drugs that help and the sooner started, the sooner you get helped.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: KaiL on March 19, 2012, 04:18:57 am
From Z to N?  Changing from electric ants to electric june bugs?   

Hans-Jörg you know of course that you possess an evil steak... hahaha. This comes close to accusing Märklin fans of running cog rail roads  (Zahnradbahnen). But then, I think they do....
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 19, 2012, 09:38:48 am
Hi KaiL I don't think Maerklin do that. I think that yopu are thinking of Fleischmann. I do have some of their rack railway track and a loco and carriages - another possibility I guess. No photo I'm afraid.

No prizes at weekend's expo. More later.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on March 19, 2012, 02:48:40 pm
Hi Chris,  :D

The "cog rail" refers to Märklin's three rail track. Way back when it used to be a solid third rail at the center of the track. Today it is just small contacts (Punktkontakte) in every tie, hardly noticable but due to location being similar to a cog rail.

BTW the insect comparison goes back to the time when live steamers (5" and 7 1/4" track gauge) refered to my HOm stuff as electric mice, it's a matter of size.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 26, 2012, 09:10:31 am
Hello, dear friends.

Well, the Moray MRG exhibition in Elgin (Scotland, not IL) has been and gone. It all went pretty well though the usual problems of tired locos on the second day afternoon manifested itself. Anyway, I am happy, which is the important thing. The visitors had a lot of positive comments though quite a few just walked past noses in the air. No prizes though.

Anyway, I have been very busy on the web. I have completed reports for the Dundee MRC and Moray MRG expos. Sadly the former is very patchy as I did something to my camera and most of my photos were unusable. I have only competed the Breitenfurt part of November's Elgin exhibition and the rest will follow over the next week.

Do have a look and I hope you like what you see. Here are the links.
Dundee MRC exhibition, October 2011 (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20111015-Dundee/index.htm)
Elgin MRC Modelfair, November, 2011 (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20111112-Elgin/index.htm)
Moray MRG GNOS* Exhibition, March 2012 (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20120317-Moray/index.htm)

With best wishes,
Chris.

*GNOS: Great North of Scotland.

[Later: I have also added 13 detail photographs to my Breitenfurt diary (link in sig.]
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 26, 2012, 12:15:48 pm
I think the Dundee show is revealing. Given the small scale you work in, I would think some 'dwarfing' is to be expected. Even in the small online photos, though, I can see that you could give them some lessons on how to get good ground coloring. A few of those pix show what I would regard as 'strange' earth colours :).
As for the tired loco, maybe it's time to either pack two locos instead of one for that train or retire it to local goods service, just like the real thing.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 26, 2012, 01:40:34 pm
Hi Jeff. Thanks for responding.
I wouldn't be too judgemental. I made a right mess of Dundee and wouldn't be surprised if the white balance is up the creek. Have a look at the sheep picture on my diary. The sheep are on a brown area but the bit in fornt should be a dull green. I will need to sort that out if I re-do those pics.
All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on March 26, 2012, 03:43:17 pm
Hi Chris,

Quite a bit of that can be corrected with photo software, all of it if you shoot with a camera that can produce RAW files.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 26, 2012, 04:41:07 pm
Yes, I appreciate that except that graphics apps and I don't get on very well with each other. I have several (not Photoshop) some of which are used for a single function that is not on any of the others. I usually try to get it right on the camera then there's less to do. I juts wish that I could use the camera's screen instead of the silly little viewfinder. Sometimes I wish I had stuck to my old Nikon with its rotatable screen.
All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Jeff on March 26, 2012, 07:40:51 pm
Chris, there are some apps out there that can fix 'common photo problems' with what amounts to one click without operator intervention. I haven't found any that can fix really big problems, but minor color balance is something most of them do okay. The best photo programs of that kind will have ways for the operator to take what it spits out and tweak the pic into submission. In many cases, you can get hold of a trial version.  I think they're worth checking out to see if you like any of them.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: RhB_HJ on March 26, 2012, 08:36:03 pm
Chris, have you tried Photoshop Elements? Much more user friendly than the full version and I seem to get an upgraded copy every time I get a new camera or scanner. Never bought a copy yet yet, but I upgraded COREL since ver3.  ;) :)
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 26, 2012, 09:50:04 pm
Hello again.
Mostly I use Microsoft's Photo Editor. Very simple program which allows one to do some colour correction. All this reminds me of a story of a printing service that spent ages trying to correct a green telephone box (enclosed booth) from green to red. They managed it eventually. It was only when the customer got the print that the truth came out. The picture had been taken in Hull which has its own city owned telephone system and their boxes are green, unlike the old Post office ones which were red.

No, I'll stick with the apps that I already have. Learning yet another one is asking tooooooo much.

All the best,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on March 28, 2012, 06:15:38 pm
My Elgin 2011 report (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20111112-Elgin/index.htm) is now complete.
Best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: Chris on November 10, 2012, 06:07:03 pm
Dear Friends,

I feel rather bad as I have not been posting updates in the last 7/8 months. I have mixed feelings about posting as really this area of the forum is about Track Plans whereas my posts tend to be about my layout. The trackplan was pretty well fixed ages ago and, apart from a couple of modifications in the hidden sidings, nothing has changed so there is nothing to talk about. On the other hand people have responded re the general progress on the layout so I feel that I can justifiably update as to where I am.

Since my last post I have continued to add more detail to the layout and have been to four exhibitions. If you are interested here are the links for those expos.

Moray MRG's Great North of Scotland model rail exhibition (March) (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20120317-Moray/)
Inverness and District MRC's model rail exhibition (September) (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20120908-Inverness/)
Oxford MRC's Zedex Z scale convention (October) (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20121014-Zedex/) and
Elgin MRC's Modelfair models exhibition (November) (http://trains.manvell.org.uk/exhibitions/20121103-Elgin/)

Enjoy.

With best wishes,
Chris.
Title: Re: Breitefurt (my first layout)
Post by: David on November 10, 2012, 07:12:17 pm
Hi Chris,

Good to hear from you! Yes, it's exhibition time, here in Holland as well. Hardly any weekend left for other activities!

David.