Based on the now, long gone, Branch Line from Campbelltown to Camden, off the Main Southern Line South of Sydney.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

To build what first.

One of my most difficult, or not so difficult, things I will have to do on this layout, is to build without plans and dimensions, therefore I am building it based on, and not modelled on the line. I decided to tackle the Camden Goods Shed first, being a straight forward building. I thought it would not be to bad from my way of thinking.
It had an awning over the track, and the first thing I had to do was to take a measurement for the rolling stock clearance, both height and width, so they would fit under the awning. This then allowed me to get a height and width for the Goods Shed building. Similar to the length of the shed. A "End Platform Car" (FO, CCA) was close to the same length. All these measurements had to appear in proportion to each other as per the photos, and objects around it. I also understand that this shed was not built to a G1, G2 or any other type shed, we could assume it was a "one off" dimension wise. I only say this looking at it's surroundings.
 
Camden Goods Shed.
 
 
So, with these factors in mind, I will build similar to original as possible.
Something I didn't mention before, is that I have kept all of Camden and Campbelltown on a module of their own. This way, if the modules are separated, there will be only one track to reconnect. The Dairy at Camden is on the adjoining module to Camden, and therefore will require a scenery build up over the module join, to give access from the street for the man with the horse and cart to get your moo juice (just going back 60 years, dreaming of course). The Dairy I will cover in a future Blog.
Cheers.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

What if there was no structures.

I often thought of a layout with just grassed fields and bare of buildings. I can only remember seeing one layout in this matter, and that was "Arid Australia" some time ago. For memory, it came from Western Australia just for an exhibition.
When I drive along some of our highways, I sometimes see a railway line following the road, or the other way round, and think, maybe this could be for my next layout !!
But it never eventuates. We always include something into our layouts in the form of a residential or industrial area of some kind, and claim the line was there to serve that purpose. Even without any structures, the line is there so that freight can be transferred from one State or Town, to another, economically. When I was back in the working class, ships berthed in Sydney and their Interstate cargo was transferred by rail, this was to save the Shipping Company berthing fees and time spent sailing between Ports. In those days it was cheaper to transfer the freight this way, and probably still is today.
 
This layout being based on the "Camden Line", has a bit of both. Between Campbelltown and Narellan there were three small station halts, being, Maryfields, Kenny Hill and Curran's Hill and between Narellan and Camden three more being, Graham's Hill, Kirkham and Elderslie, which is the one I have included on this layout. This covered the passenger services, and the Milk and Coal being the freight.  
 
 
 
Elderslie Station.
So, with all that jargon over, I  guess my attention should now revert to doing some "scenery and structures".
Cheers.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Modules complete.

With the modules completed and setup, I have now done the track laying for the whole of the Branch Line.
 
Module setup.
As I mentioned previously, there are many changes I have had to except, as  well as  trying to keep it a representation of the Line.
 
Campbelltown on the left, Camden on the right.
Narellan is across the back wall.
The cutout further down on the right is the Napean River.
Before installing the points I have removed the jumper connection under the point and inserted a slide switch which collects the power from the main rail and delivers it to the frog, which in turn feeds back to the switch rail. This now makes both switch rails alive instead of relying on the switch rail contact to the stock rail. 
 
Bead attached to the push pull brass wire
 from the outside edge of the module

Slide switch under the layout for the point operation.
A soft brass wire is used in styrene tube to operate the point switch rail. 
Operating the points manually, allows me to follow the train around the layout and set the points as I go. Camden and Narellan only had ground frames, and Campbelltown was the only station with a signal box.
As a retired "Railway Signalman", it gives me some "realism" to the operation of the layout, as it was in those days. I guess I can play the part of Engine Driver, Guard and Station Master, all in one operation. Yes it pays to be multi skilled in this hobby.
 
Cheers.