Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

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Flymo748
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Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Flymo748 » Tue Jul 05, 2016 6:44 am

During a fairly busy Exeter Show, I had a wander around the hall and spotted a stand from a supplier that I had not seen or heard of before.

They are Attwood Aggregates, and produce a range of ballasts. When I say range, I mean a *big* range. Currently six different types, and in four different grades for each.

They don't currently have a website, but these are photos of the range as applied to a card, and also the leaflet that I picked up:

IMG_0440.JPG


IMG_0441.JPG


Attwood Aggregates 1.pdf
(438.06 KiB) Downloaded 488 times


Attwood Aggregates 2.pdf
(314.12 KiB) Downloaded 448 times


The range is very impressive. Jonathan, the owner, is very knowledgeable about the product, having worked in the aggregates industry for a number of years. I'm pretty certain that this is where I'm heading when I next need ballast for a layout.

Cheers
Flymo
Beware of Trains - occasional modelling in progress!
www.5522models.co.uk

Winander
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Winander » Tue Jul 05, 2016 3:36 pm

Paul,

IIRC ballast is graded to 2 inch pieces, which makes extra fine (0.5mm said to be suitable for N gauge) 50% too big! But if it looks good....

Did you see any samples of the "Scenic Dust" detailed in the second pdf? May be useful in pre-group sidings as we are discussing that elsewhere.

thanks
Richard

mickeym
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby mickeym » Tue Jul 05, 2016 6:16 pm

Modern ballast is graded to pass through a 3" riddle, so 1mm is about right for 4mm scale :)

Alan Turner
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Alan Turner » Tue Jul 05, 2016 6:37 pm

mickeym wrote:Modern ballast is graded to pass through a 3" riddle, so 1mm is about right for 4mm scale :)


Unfortunately it is far from "alright" for ballast of earlier times.

regards

Alan

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Flymo748
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Flymo748 » Wed Jul 06, 2016 6:21 am

Winander wrote:IIRC ballast is graded to 2 inch pieces, which makes extra fine (0.5mm said to be suitable for N gauge) 50% too big! But if it looks good....


I'm no expert in ballast, but I do know a bit about maths... I assume that you were talking about the 0.5mm being too big for N gauge? The 0.5mm would be undersized for our 4mm purposes as 2" would be 0.66mm, true to scale.

However you are completely right that the visual impression is the important thing, and the 0.5mm version did look very good. Suitably fine to give that impression of distance rather than being able to see every individual stone.[/quote]

Winander wrote:Did you see any samples of the "Scenic Dust" detailed in the second pdf? May be useful in pre-group sidings as we are discussing that elsewhere.


Yes, and it is literally very fine dust... I would think that you lay it onto a prepared surface, held down with brushed PVA. The great advantage of it is it comes from the same source as the ballast, so you would have a perfect colour match.

It would indeed be useful for those yard/engine shed/siding/path areas that we have been talking about.

HTH
Flymo
Beware of Trains - occasional modelling in progress!
www.5522models.co.uk

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Flymo748
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Flymo748 » Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:40 am

I'm very pleased to say that Jonathan, of Attwood Aggregates, noticed this topic and has kindly sent us further information. This extract below is from an email to me:

"Having read the comments on your forum thought you might like the following information about our ballast.

Railway specification for Ballast has varied over the years from 2 inch (50mm) to 2 ½ inch (63mm). The latter being the currant spec. from Network Rail.

The other important part of producing Ballast is the stones have to be of an irregular shape so that they lock together when positioned to stop movement but also to allow drainage. This means that size varies very slightly and correctly made Ballast doesn’t resemble “sugar cubes” as we call it in the industry!

Our Ballast sizes is of an average size and we are limited to the apertures of the mesh that we use in our screening process, they are as follows.

Coarse Recommended for O Gauge
Average size 2.0mm Mesh aperture 2.1mm – 1.18mm.

Medium Recommended for O or OO Gauge
Average size 1.0mm Mesh aperture 1.17mm – 0.850mm.

Fine Recommended for OO Gauge
Average size 0.75mm Mesh aperture 0.849mm – 0.600mm.

Ex. Fine Recommended for N Gauge
Average size 0.50mm Mesh aperture 0.599mm – 0.400mm

Road Stone Recommended for Roads, paths and can be used for finer N Gauge
Average size 0.30mm Mesh aperture 0.399mm – 0.300mm

Dust Mesh aperture 0.299 – 0.001 mm

As you can see from the mesh sizes that are used we try to produce our products as close to the desired scale as possible.
The Ballast that we produce is natural stone and has a newness to it, so it would require weathering if necessary.
One of the comments we receive from our customers is that they like to see their Ballasting after spending hours positioning it, as some true scale sizes would be very hard to see!
I hope the above information is of use to yourselves and please feel free to circulate to your members.

Jonathan Attwood
Attwood Aggregates Model Railway Ballast"

Cheers
Flymo
Beware of Trains - occasional modelling in progress!
www.5522models.co.uk

martin goodall
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby martin goodall » Tue Jul 12, 2016 11:03 am

I was very interested to see this thread. Any chance of Attwood Aggregates being represented at Scaleforum?

A few comments occur. First, model ballast that is made from actual stone aggregate can be noisy, especially if glued down hard with PVA. This is why ballast made from ground cork or almond shells tends to be preferred, glued down with Copydex or some other latex-based adhesive. (Yes, I know it can get wound round a drill bit if you drill into it after it is laid, but this is easily avoided with a bit of care.)

However, the Attwood Aggregates products would clearly be very useful for other scenic work, especially the roadstone and scenic dust. Up to now I have used sieved cat litter for such applications, so this new product would save some time and effort.

As to the method for sticking down fine grit and dust (or ash), I use a method I learnt from Gordon Gravett. Paint the surface to which the grit/dust/ash is to be applied with gloss paint of roughly the same colour, and before the paint has a chance to dry, sieve the grit, dust or ash onto it. Gloss paint is preferable, as it stays sticky longer than matt paint. The paint alone will be a sufficient adhesive without need of anything further being required. Tamping the grit, dust or ash down with the finger produces a rougher texture. If you want a finer texture, don’t touch it after sieving it onto the surface to be covered. Leave plenty of time for the paint to dry (at least 24 hours) then vacuum off the surplus. I have successfully used this method for laying ash on platforms and sand or grit on paths, etc. I am sure the same method would work with the Attwood Aggregates products.

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Re6/6
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Re: Attwood Aggregates - new ballast supplier

Postby Re6/6 » Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:34 am

Also noted were packets of real china clay which we bought to experiment with on the wagons for 'Bodmin'

Obviously, being the real stuff, it did have the authentic shade of greyish white.
John


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