Tim Hale

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Everything posted by Tim Hale

  1. Nicely taken out of context, did you actually bother to read the preceding sentence before rushing to put finger to keyboard? The 'group' is the Beaminster Road Group and I am the only member of the group on MRL. The type of comment from Jack (an Administrator) is one of the reasons why discontinuing is inevitable. Tim Hale
  2. Hi, This must be the last post. Following early retirement, it has been a struggle to breathe life back into the layout, thankfully the Beaminster Road Group have taken over the layout and its blog. As the only member of the group on MRL it seems a bit silly to continue with no interaction forthcoming. 'Bye Tim
  3. The Grassmaster has received a new battery and some rather nice 10mm mixed grass. It will need detailing with dead grass at the road edges and the occasional tall weed would not come amiss. The revenge of the Grassmaster
  4. I loathe the slow progress of ballasting, however badly ballasted track leaves a terrible first impression. Ballasting has just re-started on Beaminster Road This link has lots of pictures - Ballasting for any scale Tim
  5. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zPvBcJEFjv8 As a postscript, this morning, a oouple of useful hours were spent removing the incumbent DCC system. The 'new' two-wire Direct Control system was a doddle to install, a mounting plate for the 5-pin DIN socket took longest to fabricate. The first run was carried out by a brand new Bachmann H2, it ran perfectly, unlike the Hornby Bulleid Light Pacific that constantly derailed at any speed. The control of the ancient AGW PE1000 handheld leaves nothing to be desired, the posh motor in the DJH U class no longer buzzes and it runs without overheating. Consequently, an under-used and boxed Digikeijs DR5000 together with a complete Roco MultiMaus system and a bunch of hardly used decoders are currently on a well known auction site. All the decoders have being carefully removed, all killa and no filla, they will go the same way. Beaminster Road
  6. Fantastic, very many thanks. We live at the bottom of the climb out of Sherborne towards Milborne Port. The sound of two 50s assaulting the gradient was impressive, to say the least. I had no idea that 50s were in revenue earning service. Beaminster Road https://www.railmagazine.com/news/network/gbrf-livery-for-two-class-50s Wow!!!
  7. Hi, Thanks but what on earth was running through Sherborne, was it an HST or a big loco hauled special? Is that Penzance-Waterloo service a regular train, I ask because we so used to just 159s and the occasional Cathedrals Express. BTW all we could see was lots of coaches and hear a throaty roar. Tim
  8. Not a DCC vs DC rant, merely adieu to one system and a welcome return to another. About six months ago, I began a gradual return to British steam outline after many years of successfully exhibiting small German layouts. The two systems have quite different requirements:- The German layouts used locos with sound, lights whilst all the turnouts were DCC controlled. The British layout is permanent, the steam locos merely need motor control, no sound whilst the Tortoise turnout motors are analogue controlled. The turnouts are self-isolating Peco Code 75, working equally well with both DC and DCC. Recent incompatibility issues with Bachmann and Hornby products forced the question of why I need anything more than motor control, therefore why am I fitting decoders? The Digikeijis DR5000 is coming out, the locos are being restored to DC and everything will be sold. In its place, I am using an AGW PE1000 handheld, a new pair were bought on eBay for less than the price of a basic decoder. Their control is switchable PWM with a handy 'inch' button that gives a tiny kick during coupling. My requirements are really simple, the real lesson is to consider what is actually needed rather than following a trend. The real advantages are:- Direct motor control, cool running coreless motors. The extra £25 for basic Zimo and all the faff of installation doesn't seem to be worth the effort. Finally, no compatibility issues or wondering if it is the loco or the decoder. Moreover, with the removal of the decoder, there is an option to fit a larger stay-alive capacitor with obvious running advantages.
  9. About 5 mins ago, 20:35 23.03.19 We were shaken by the throaty roar of a large diesel in charge of an eastbound passenger train passing through Sherborne, definitely not the quiet 159s but something much bigger. The train was at least ten coaches ( our local trans are three or six) but the specials website has no announcements. Are HST's being routed through Yeovil-Gillingham-Salisbury??? Any ideas Tim
  10. Hi, Dry walls in Dorset - picture and comment
  11. In recent months, I have been rebuilding a layout started and a start has been made on testing the stored locos. Last week they were taken out of storage, the locos are exclusively modern Hornby, S15 R3328, T9 R3107 and 700 R3240 are all fitted with Bachmann 36-553 which seemed to be the standard decoder at the time. Track was clean and all three were examined for dust, just in case, but all had been stored in their original boxes. Performance could not have been more varied, the S15 R3328 glided around the workshop test track with without hesitation and under perfect control. Not so the two others, the T9 R3107 suffered a fast-slow-fast progress without any change of control input but the 700 R3240 was the most bizarre, stop-go-stop-go and then complete disaster as it derailed whilst running forward on a Peco long turnout. (both the S15 and T9 passed through without a murmur) Having asked at the supplying retailer if there had been similar issues with other T9 and 700, it seems that the earlier T9 model had problems with the bogie height that prevent full contact of the driving wheels (with no solution offered) but the retailer had no knowledge of the 700 because I had been the only customer who bought one.... .however Having reset the decoder to default values by adjusting CV8 to 08 and then tweaking the CVs, I can report that the Bachmann 36-553 decoders in both the Hornby 700 and T9 respond well to:- CV 5 - 20 CV54 - 10 CV55 - 40 The result is smooth control, no jerk and reasonable top speed for Edwardian locos. Beaminster Road
  12. Loco building - old skool This is lost in this box-opening world but some modellers still build stuff. This is how it looked when it arrived and this is where it is going except it will be BR 30548 Or rather where it should go except it needs a fair amount of re-working. A new chassis and tender (the latter is a Bachmann N Class), the etched chassis is from SEF and a High Level motordrive It will need to be stripped and dipped and upgraded It should be ready in a few months.... Due to the loss of Mashima Motors, a new motor was sourced from CCT in Cornwall. Beaminster Road
  13. This link may explain a bit more.... The Petite Properties kit is fairly basic but it is robust, all the pieces fit and every example is utterly unique. Some folk do some amazing things with a covering of air drying clay which they scribe to look like rough stone. My favourite method is a render coat of cheapo ready-mixed decorator's filler, spread it on like butter, let it dry for 24hrs and sand it until smooth, then apply a thin wash of water colour. The picture below is not my work, it is a bit too rough but you get the idea of what you can achieve...
  14. The Dible's Wharf project is cancelled.
  15. A couple of years ago, I 'discovered' the pleasure of laser-cut card buildings with really well designed kits from Stangel and Josswood but these were German outline, now I am modelling the Southern Region in the West of England. Petite Properties have a good reputation for really nice laser-cut kits in MDF, they are very accurately cut and robust, I bought a couple. This is the start of Washtub Cottage, rather typical of a small rural dwelling in West Dorset. The outer finish is Stangel Acrylmasse, two coats were needed, the window sills are painted in white artist's acrylic and the natural wood colour is Rowney diluted Sepia Dye. The roof of the main building and porch is Redutex 076PC121 weathered tiles The homemade ridge tiles will be folded and textured card but at the moment I am making some rainwater drainage from bits of brass. After that, it will need considerable amounts of weathering.
  16. Tim Hale

    exLSWR 4-4-0s

    The perceptive of most modellers is that the BR steam era was characterised by dirt and decline, a false image normally espoused by those who dismiss whatever they do not understand. The reality, is one of dynamic change, endless variety when BR's Modernisation plan of 1955 heralded a new age of traction and the demise of steam. It is notable that there are few groups dedicated to BR Steam whilst social media seems overflowing with Banger Blue this and post-sectorization that, unfortunately what is unspoken is the lack of variety in both operation and stock of modern railways merely to be replaced by odd paint schemes. A sole Facebook Group tries to buck the trend:- https://www.facebook.com/groups/2111265285858032/ Personally, it is no secret that my 'soft spot' is the exLSWR Drummond 4-4-0 and whilst the T9 is well known, there were five other classes. Of these, the L12 and S11 were the unsung heroes of the operating department, Bert Hooker, once took an eleven coach boat 'special' non-stop to Southampton with an elderly S11 without any loss of time although the tender was almost empty of water. Here are a few images:- Just one S11, 30404 exBournemouth on a Salisbury up passing West Moors, the rest are all L12s and D15s. All the images were once part of my late father's collection, captured within a 45 mile radius in Hampshire and Wiltshire My late father travelled behind S11 30434 on the Hants and Surrey tour of the Tongham cut-off in 1953 S11 30404 exBournemouth passes West Moors on an up Salisbury over the S&DJR Below, all L12s, basically T9s with a larger boiler. Below two images of 30465, the last D15, on down Lymington boat trains. These could be over eleven coaches and were tightly scheduled, they were replaced by SR V Class.
  17. 30119 was specially reserved for working royal trains - a unique position for a pre-Grouping engine. When not in such service it worked from Dorchester shed where it is seen here about 1948 still in malachite green but with its BR numbering and lettering. As Beaminster Road's passenger locos reflect those allocated to 71C Dorchester shed, 30119 is rather appropriate. The end came when 30119 was relieved of her duties during the 1952 Royal visit to Lee-on-the-Solent when 34011 Tavistock hauled Pullmans - Minerva, Isle of Thanet, Aries, Orion and Phoenix (for the Queen) The Hornby model merely needs a wash of dirty water to tone down the rather verdant green.
  18. The Dible's Wharf project is cancelled.
  19. The Dible's Wharf project is cancelled.
  20. Within living memory, most large villages had an independent motor car repairer, possibly a legacy of the local blacksmith. These establishments would attempt repairs on most motor vehicles, supply and fit tyres, coal, paraffin, even fix your bicycle. Away from the coast, West Dorset, is somewhat off the beaten track and Tilly's Garage would have been typical of the area, just a single wooden building with an attached office, it would serve the community until Mr Tilly's retirement. Tilly's Auto Repairs started as a Wills garage, the roof has been painted to represent corrugated asbestos with the moss starting to gather. It has a fully detailed interior of correct period advertising and piles of old tyres outside. The car is an Austin 7, an economy model that was produced from 1922 until 1939 in the United Kingdom by Austin. It was nicknamed the "Chummy" or "Baby Austin" and was at that time one of the most popular cars produced for the British market and sold well abroad. Before the Land Rover became available on the home market, vehicles in rural communities tended to be suitable for the area, West Dorset's narrow lanes and short distances were ideal for the little Austin. They could go almost anywhere, in 1928, an Austin 7 was driven to the top of Ben Nevis by a Mr G F Simpson of Edinburgh. Moreover, easy to fix and economical, they were still a common sight in the 50s. Tim
  21. Hi, This is my first attempt at a video, thankfully it uploaded on to YouTube. I cannot post the YouTube URL as the iPad will not allow me copy it, bummer. The video clip shows a OO Works D15 4-4-0 running-in, a process that is essential for all metal gearboxes and kitbuilt locos. https://timhalesblog.blogspot.com/2019/01/oo-works-d15-running-in.html This is the model, though old fashioned compared with a Hornby T9, it is both accurate and realistic. It is fitted with a ESU LoPi and an extra set of pickups on the tender. Tim
  22. https://timhalesblog.blogspot.com/2019/01/two-tatty-buildings.html The roof is painted charcoal with a layer of ground white pepper. Somewhere in the waste bin, there is a tiny Mars wrapper. Enjoy Tim
  23. Just listening to the rain hammering down and hoping that the Dawlish line will finally get washed away. Tim Hale
  24. Hi, The transition from a double to single track layout can be found here:- https://timhalesblog.blogspot.com/2018/12/scenery-upgrade-1.html For the next couple of months, the only work on the layout will be scenery and re-testing, though a break is being taken during Christmas to run some trains. However, in the meantime, a picture of a slightly weathered BLP and a mucky N15 ToodlePip Tim