SmallScenes
Goodness me, it's been days since anyone posted in these layout threads. Thought I'd put something in
before I get banned for too much historical stuff.
A few words to start with. Aspirations, we all have crazy dreams of an industrial unit sized layout. Even
smaller than that is frequently still too big for practical single modeller ownership and construction, I know
because I've been there. What good is a 21 foot long 12 board layout that you need a van & driver to take
anywhere and too big to put up at home. It becomes an expensive white elephant.

Think small and fun to drive. In a space of 4 feet x 18 inches (1220 mm x 460 mm) you can build a shunting
puzzle layout that's fun to drive and can be fully scenic to satisfy any visual standards you want to work to.
I was told at club night this week that on seeing and driving HS-2 (Happy Shunting Version 2) at the Frome
exhibition that 1st weekend in January a guy he knows has now built his own dockside version. Great because
they are low cost, small space, reasonably fast to make, and entertaining to drive !!

I'll now go into the birth of HS-2.

First we had HS-1, this was laying out track and working out how small our base boards would be to meet
the 3 + 3 wagon sidings, 5 wagon loading platform, 4 wagon head shunt. The coupling/uncoupling to be
by Kadees to eradicate any touching of stock. Operation by a built-in Hornby Select which being cheap
secondhand unit was easy to use and operate our single locomotive in steam.

IMG_2082.jpg 
While checking this layout we decided it was a left-handed track plan and we would reverse the tracks.
More testing and trying to decide if we should go for powerful hidden magnets, or the simple to install,
but rather unsightly between tracks version.

IMG_2137.jpg 
Testing showed that we needed to slightly increase the distance between the two points. We also decide on hidden magnets and all the problems that brings, simply because we wouldn't compromise our scenic aim.

IMG_2173.jpg 
Still with the bodge 'scrap' concrete sleeper track as we struggled getting stock to work reliably with
the Kadees. Although cost wasn't a real consideration as we'd already bought a Sentinel & BR 1F we
did plan on using mostly self painted and decalled Dapol wagons. Partialy this was to allow every van to
have it's own individual number, something that would glare at us were they all the same !!

Even with all this preparation work the coal drop that was planned to be beyond the loading platform
was in danger of being cut in the wrong place - Measure twice (at least ), cut once !!

IMG_2193.jpg 

Trying to make a lightweight honeycomb supporting underframe with adjustable feet, that have never been
used. Note the screw-on panels covering our magnet locations.

IMG_2194.jpg 

The wife calls - we HAVE to go out, Pt.2 to follow ........

Geoff.
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SmallScenes
Pt.2 Continues, Back from the shops !!

It's nice having the baseboard, but as this was always intended to be used at exhibitions we needed a safe enclosure to prevent transport
damage. My co-builder loves his woodwork and this was the result.

HS II Layout Box.jpg 

While he was doing that I set about painting & decalling some wagons. Due to the cost of 3 lengths of very small brass screws
used fixing the piano hinges I thought up the Nettlefolds wagon markings. Once we did supply screws to the world, now they cost
the world !! Decalls printed on my inkjet printer

IMG_2150.jpg 

IMG_2251.jpg 

Scenery started, first a suitable 'break' for the headshunt.

IMG_2208.jpg 

The other end had North Light factory buildings, one window to have a welding simulator behind to distract drivers.

Factory.jpg 

We wanted simple, but different and decided on the two Livefrog points being operated by push-rods attached to a couple of vehicles.

IMG_2196.jpg 

We used some welding rods. They were rather thick and needed thinning to fit into the Peco points. To securely locate, yet have serviceable
the rods are held in holes under removable caps.

IMG_2202.jpg 

The plan was to leave the switch rail contact to take current to the isolated 'V's. Just in case anything went wrong the 'V' wires were taped
under the board so we could power directly if necessary.

Called away again so next it'll be part 3

Geoff
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SmallScenes
Pt.3
Ahhh Lunch Over, cup of tea beside me.
Now where was I ?

Yes points. Now we have no idea quite how, or why it happened but the spring in the first point dislodged and jammed the mechanism. All
I'd left to work through was a small slot underneath with just enough room for the operating rods movement. By now removing the point would
damage much of the already fixed track and level crossing. I slowly trimmed the hole enough to get the spring back, but it's strength was damaged
and wouldn't hold tight enough against the stock rail for reliable current to the 'V'. This is where leaving those 'V' wires taped under the board was
very useful. I thought I'd try making a mechanical polarity switch worked off the point changing push rod. I made a rough prototype, and because it
works so well I've never made a neater version. Bits of copper-clad, a neo magnet, couple of screws and hey presto !!

IMG_2262.jpg 

IMG_2266.jpg 

After my working point rodding, I added some Plastic before I went any further with ballasting.

IMG_2253.jpg 

The controller box stuck securely, time to add some embossed paper brickwork.

IMG_2271.jpg 

IMG_2273.jpg 

Scenic work now in full swing

IMG_2303.jpg 

IMG_2306.jpg 

As each puzzle is on a ticket with each wagon being easily identified, where necessary with large red letters.

IMG_2309.jpg 

Welding flash to try and disrupt the thinking process of a driver, the brazier glows as well.
IMG_2411.jpg 

In use at an exhibition - Too easily lost in a corner ?
IMG_2566.jpg 

Much better with a shouting sign above !

IMG_2698.jpg 

Your puzzle is :- We have 2 sets, red & black, where we just remove one van and replace with an empty coal wagon to give more variation.
IMG_2856.jpg 

Small, simple enough regardless of any minor problems along the way, 2 locos and 10 wagons more than enough, best run DCC for super
smooth low speed running. In fact now I set the controller at a suitable slow speed and can complete exercises just using the direction change
buttons.
Kadees - Ouch, can be difficult to set up, luckily this type of shunting layout does not need the free shunt action, just reliable running trains over
magnets without breaking the train, but separate reliably on the uncoupling. Ideal for this type of job BUT you need to add brakes so now wagon
runs freely.

I'm about to start an even simpler, slightly smaller single siding version with a 3 wagon head-shunt, 3 wagon siding, 4 to go by the loading platform
working with 5 wagons. But it proves anyone can have a nice running railway in the smallest of spaces.

THE END ......... You must all be pleased about that !!

Geoff.
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Jaz Avalley JazAvalley
shunting puzzle?

Jaz Avalley

Model Railway Discussion Group

https://www.facebook.com/groups/495282280644117/
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Bunkerbarge
I once saw a very similar small shunting puzzle at an exhibition which I first of all thought was a bit uninteresting.  Surprisingly while I watched I found myself being drawn into it and was soon working out how to achieve the result that some of the other users were trying to achieve.  They had a number of cards representing the wagons at the front of the stand and you had to do something along the lines of pick a card to represent the wagon, then pick a card to represent the siding and that's where the wagon had to end up.

What I really like about these is the way in which they encourage the public to have a go and, before they know it they are enjoying shunting some wagons around a track.  I think it is a great way to tempt people into the hobby.

Yours is a very well put together example and doesn't shy away from being a very realistic layout.  Whoever came up with the tag line for the brass company is pushing his luck a bit!!
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SmallScenes
I did mention in my main layout thread that after letting someone operate HS2 at a couple of exhibitions it came back to
me in late August damaged.
Look at that last picture and see the difference. IMG_3143.jpg 

Now a replacement loading gauge with stretched sprue supports as per the original. The new cycle rack in place, but when photographed
bicycles not attached. The old shed repaired although one bike and rack completely missing and this will be fixed alongside as shown.
I also eventually got around to fixing the small bulls-eye spirit level. The layout has 6 adjustable feet to allow one to be fussy, but with
heavy braking on all the dedicated wagons the Kadees will work on a small slope.

IMG_3152.jpg 

Back in my shed and getting used every day

Geoff T.
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Ruffnut Thorston
I must admit that I laughed at the Nettlefolds wagon signwriting! 😀

All very good.

Shunting puzzles are good.

We made one to keep ourselves amused, using a loco with no motor, so hand pushed!

Uses no electricity! 😉😀
Best wishes,

Ruff...
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Briperran
A shunting puzzle is probably one of the best ways to introduce a young person into building a layout and not a train set giving lots of interest operational wise  and allowing them to develop scenic skills and building skills and importantly not costing a fortune.

Brian
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SmallScenes
Hi Ruff,

I always try to add a little humour, I fear too many in this and other hobbies take life too seriously.
It's supposed to be FUN. I always try to introduce some humour, my first layout was/is called "Two Short Planks"
because I was as thick as two short planks when I started it and it was on two short planks. When I wanted a little
more space I added a piece on the side. As a result the full layout is called "Two Short Planks And A Bit On The Side"

I do hand shunting as well when I'm trying to fettle Kadees into reliable operation - What a story that can be.

Hi Briperran,

A shunting puzzle is ideal for anyone with limited space and to some degree finance. Although our "Stock" box includes
two locomotives you really only need one. Without doubt this layout on a basis of, time, cost, always available for use, is
by far the best I've ever made. (9 layouts & 10 dioramas)

Geoff T
Quote 1 0
Jaz Avalley JazAvalley
SmallScenes wrote:
I did mention in my main layout thread that after letting someone operate HS2 at a couple of exhibitions it came back to
me in late August damaged.
Look at that last picture and see the difference. IMG_3143.jpg 

Now a replacement loading gauge with stretched sprue supports as per the original. The new cycle rack in place, but when photographed
bicycles not attached. The old shed repaired although one bike and rack completely missing and this will be fixed alongside as shown.
I also eventually got around to fixing the small bulls-eye spirit level. The layout has 6 adjustable feet to allow one to be fussy, but with
heavy braking on all the dedicated wagons the Kadees will work on a small slope.

IMG_3152.jpg 

Back in my shed and getting used every day

Geoff T.
Ouch, and they had to know what happened surely, did they offer to put time in to help repair, I can bet they never offered any cash to help sort it. I would love to be proved wrong, of course.

Jaz Avalley

Model Railway Discussion Group

https://www.facebook.com/groups/495282280644117/
Quote 0 0
SmallScenes
Jaz you're correct they must have known, where had the brass loading gauge arch gone ?
Just a surprised reaction and of course no offer to do anything about it. Lucky the broken
items were no more that £7 - £8 to replace, but did take some time.
Stretched sprue seems to be out of fashion and as we're electric I had no gas hob over which
to heat to stretch. I made my own small oil lamp from one of those miniature condiment or jam
jars. A cotton string wick, don't forget the 0.4 mm breather hole to allow for displacement as
the thinners I used as a fuel burnt. Works a treat ..... some kids just like playing with fire !!!

Geoff T.
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Peter Rust Rusty Pete
Geoff, 
You have my sympathy.
I lent Buchshee to the club for display at MK last year. Prior to leaving, it was fully checked out and was okay.
When it came back, the wiring was damaged and the controller non-functioning.That was the catalyst to its rebuild, posted elsewhere.
The Gaugemaster was replaced with a knackered old Hammant & Morgan [layout was dual analogue/ digital].
It was known by the crew that I dislike H&M and that my locos all had decoders, at that time running both systems but now digital only.
Pete
More than one way to skin a cat ðŸ˜‰
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SmallScenes
Ahhh MK, my old club. Great bunch of guys, just too far for me to really keep in touch and go to their exhibition.

For anyone who didn't fully understand the set up (Even if you give it to them in writing) mixing analogue and digital is iffy.
Going digital only is in my opinion the safest way to go. Lets face it some would have trouble with a Brio train set !!

Mind you decoders are 'funny' things. On the clubs test track they often short it out when putting stock on the loop while
something is running on the main track. I've had this blow the set address out on the odd Bachmann decoder, re-setting to
default 03 !!  Brio has it's advantages for some ......

Geoff T.
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AHJAY
The best solution for a club is to have ONE track dedicated to adding of new locos during a running session.

Have a push-to-make button on one power wire to that bit of track that must only be pressed to release the loco to the layout after its properly on the rails. That way clumsy people do not cause issues for others during the running session.

regards, Ahjay
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Jaz Avalley JazAvalley

Ouch, and they had to know what happened surely, did they offer to put time in to help repair, I can bet they never offered any cash to help sort it. I would love to be proved wrong, of course.

I like the bus shelters, i have one i painted plain green, yours in my opinion looks better rusty and worn, another to add to the list to do.

Jaz Avalley

Model Railway Discussion Group

https://www.facebook.com/groups/495282280644117/
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