Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan

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Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by MrBenn »

Like the other posts in this part of the forum I'm new here. Also like a lot of people I've gotten into model railways by inheriting some trains. It has literally just been inheriting the trains no track. I'm 42 now and my Grandad had a very basic model railway when I was about 8 or 9. I used to sit for hours playing with the trains he had. Making very crude scenery out of random bits of cardboard. If I was very well behaved I was allowed to play with his pride and joy. A Hornby Southern 903 (Charterhouse) I loved the look of this train and most of the time it sat on a shelf out of reach.
When my Grandad passed away it stayed on the shelf for about 20 years until my Gran passed away a couple of months ago. When one of my Uncles asked me if I wanted it. I leapt at the chance. I also inherited another train that belonged to another of my Uncles who passed away during the first UK lockdown. This is a Class 5 LMS train number 4657. Which I believe has a Ringfield engine and is about the same age as I am. Of the two the Charterhouse runs slightly better but not great. The connection from the tender to the train is a little hit and miss. The Class 5 (despite me stripping it down and oiling/greasing the bearings) screeches like a banshee. It sounds like the gears are slipping but they're not. It's coming from the motor. So any help with these two would be awesome.

Anyway I ended up getting the Western Pullman set from someone at work and have a small layout. But I really would like to build a proper layout for me and my 8 year old son to play on. I've looked at all sorts of track and have a layout in mind. But would like to know where the best (and cheapest) place to get track from is. Peco seems to be cheaper than Hornby. But Bachman seems to be even cheaper again. I've been told to avoid eBay for track as it can be a bit difficult to get good track. Especially points which seem to be quite expensive.

I've attached a picture of the layout I had in mind. It's based on the 1997 Hornby catalogue layout.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by dtb »

Hi VoG, welcome to MRF, loads of help here having some of the best people for help.

I came back to model railways also at the age of 42 when my son was born, though I am a older now and my layout is still not finished, prepare yourself for the long game :D

All my loco's are loco driven and my layout is fully DCC. so with regards to the ringfield motors, I see you are happy spending time to fix the issues and I suggest you look on youtube for help. Search 00Bill, no don't bother, there is a link below as he has stripped plenty of ringfield and got them working perfectly.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCollzr ... LJQ/videos

Good luck, keep us updated and enjoy your stay here.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by RogerB »

Hi Mr Benn, welcome to the forum.

You might want to add another crossover to that track plan. If you follow the UK railway convention of driving on the left [where two tracks are present] you can only get from the inner loop to the next one out by reversing. You might not mind that of course.

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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by Mountain Goat »

Hello. I am in the South Wales area as well. You do have some interesting trains to make a start.
Nothing wrong with Bachmann, Peco or Hornby track. The only things worth mentioning are that as Hornby track is built to a railheight known as code 100, whichis the most suitable for running the older models like you have, if you stick to that you can't go wrong, but here are some reccomendations to save money and to hopefully avoid any issues.

The first is that as far as I am aware, Bachmann points are not self isolating. I have not had any so I can't confirm or deny this.

Curved points are usually troublesome so I would only use them in situations when one has to. They are known to cause de-railments because the central part of the point known as the frog happens to be longer and so wheels can bounce in them. Now if all wheel flanges are the exact same depth one can shim up the frog to prevent this, but life is not like that as there are many different flange depths on 00 gauge models which is why the curved points are best avoided.

One can save money on larger layouts (Check prices as I have not kept in touch) by buying flexible track which needs to be cut to length, but for the sharper first and second radius curves, it is best to use ordinary sectional track. Small layouts may not have much of a saving because unless one lives near a model shop (There were more then one in the Cardiff area if they are still there), one needs to buy multiple lengths in bulk to post them. This is to prevent damage and to make the postage costs worth it (If posting a single length the postage costs are far more then the track s worth!)
One would also need a pair of track cutting shears or a carbodium disk on a little minidrill (Wear goggles as those discs do shatter and fly off at speed!)
The reason why I would use sectional track (Train set type track) for the sharper curves is that flexible track tries to push outwards at the track railjoint which can cause problems on occasions.

New track has the advantage that one knows it is perfectly flat (Or should be) and undamaged. Now if the track offered is cheap enough so if some of the falty or worn sections can be used in sidings (Just like the real railways did), and one spends time testing many trains on it, secondhand can offer real bargains if one has the patience.

Nickel silver track is better. At one time nearly all track was steel which had a coating on it. The issue was with steel was when the track got dirty or slightly rusty, one would clean it with a very mildly abrazive track cleaning rubber and it would remove the coating and if one was in a slightly damp enviroment, one was forever cleaning a thin layer of rust on it, which was easily done but was a bit of a pain! Nickel silver track does also need cleaning but it tarnishes instead of rusts and is actually suitable for being used outdoors. (If running outdoors keep all train controllers in a dry place like a train shed and operate the trains from in there. One can run trains in the rain, but be aware that locos can shed their traction tyres if they have them).

Two things I would personally recommend is to buy either a Peco or a Hornby track cleaning rubber (Get two or three of the things as they can be easily put down somewhere out of sight when one needs them!) and spare packets of railjoiners.
I also use Hornby or Gaugemaster track pins. Some people use glue. If using glue copydex is a good plan as one can lift track and move it if needed. Most track may need holes drilling to pin it to the board. Hornby track comes ready holed. Not sure about Bachmann, but usually Peco track will need to be drilled.

Hornby, Bachmann and Peco track can be mixed if it has the same railheight code 100. Peco do code 100, code 75 and I think either code 82 or 83? (One of them! I can't remember if 82 or 83. It is popular in America. Here in the UK code 100 and code 75 which is low profile finescale track tends to be used).
Now one can mix code 75 and code 100 BUT one will need to use converter track or converter railjoiners (Or pack under the code 75 track and solder) so it can be more problematic.
Last edited by Mountain Goat on Fri Sep 24, 2021 9:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by bulleidboy »

Hi Mr Benn - Welcome to the forum - lots of help, information and fun. BB
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by MrBenn »

Thanks for all the replies. Some great information there. I've gone back on Anyrail and am now fiddling with the layout to get rid of that curved point :)
I had absolutely no idea about the track heights I wondered what the different code numbers were for.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by teedoubleudee »

Hi Mr Benn and welcome to our forum.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by Walkingthedog »

Hi Mr Benn. Excellent forum full of knowledge and a bit of humour. Or is it full of humour and a bit of knowledge.
Last edited by Walkingthedog on Fri Sep 24, 2021 5:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by Bandit Mick »

Welcome to the friendly forum Mr. Benn. Ask questions and show us what you’re modelling - no-one is judgemental on here, only helpful.
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Re: Hello from the Vale of Glamorgan


Post by Mr Bones »

Welcome to the forum Mr Benn. Friendly helpful bunch on here. Enjoy...
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