THE MID­DLE GROUND

Model Rail (UK) - - What’s New -

This sec­ond, more ad­vanced ‘OO’ gauge de­sign fits into a 10ft by 5ft space and makes use of both flex­i­ble and rigid ge­om­e­try track. I’ve used the east­ern end bridge at Healey Mills as a view blocker, but si­t­u­ated in a sim­i­lar way to the mod­ern road bridge at Tees Up Yard, near Mid­dles­brough, where it over­looks the hump and pri­mary re­tarder. By turn­ing the whole track plan around, I’ve man­aged to in­cor­po­rate a work­ing hump. All the front-side track­work is slightly higher, ris­ing from ‘H’ to ‘J’, level to ‘K’ and then drop­ping down to ‘L’. As a re­sult, this en­ables track ‘M’, which leads to the pri­mary re­tarder, to be on a shal­low fall­ing grade. If ten­sion lock couplings are used, wag­ons can be un­cou­pled at ‘N’. With the un­cou­pler on a gra­di­ent, a lead wagon will need to be held so the cou­pling with the wagon be­hind is not in ten­sion. A sim­ple phys­i­cal so­lu­tion would be to have a wire that can be raised and low­ered be­tween the track. Al­ter­na­tively, it might be pos­si­ble to use a point mo­tor with an ex­tended bar if you want a power-op­er­ated so­lu­tion. What­ever method you de­cide to im­ple­ment, you’ll need to do some ac­cu­rate driv­ing and very care­ful shunt­ing. Lev­els, gra­di­ents and the speed of free-mov­ing wag­ons will need to be tested by way of a full-size, work­ing mock-up. Only then will you be able to de­fine the gra­di­ent through the un­cou­pler and re­tarders. Which­ever you choose, despatched wag­ons will un­dergo the same process. Hav­ing passed over a sec­ondary re­tarder, wag­ons will dis­ap­pear off-stage into a ‘crash cage’, a Peco SL-43 Loco Lift with some ad­di­tional soft foam pad­ding at the far­thest end. When all four are full - to­talling about 12 short-wheel­based wag­ons - they

should be placed at ‘P’ and gen­tly ‘poured’ into one of four de­par­ture sid­ings. I think a few soft bris­tles or grass tufts be­tween the rails should slow them down suf­fi­ciently. The rest of the lay­out is pretty straight­for­ward and is a wholly fic­ti­tious in­ter­pre­ta­tion. All the com­po­nents men­tioned in the smaller lay­out are in­cor­po­rated in this de­sign, with the added ben­e­fit of the oc­ca­sional DMU ser­vice, ben­e­fit­ting from loops at ‘Q’ and ‘R’.

SCI­ENCE & SO­CI­ETY PIC­TURE LI­BRARY

It was a brave new world in­side at Tins­ley’s new mar­shalling yard. This is the in­te­rior of Shop­cote Lane sig­nal­box on Au­gust 1 1965.

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