NER Track questions

Discuss the prototype and how to model it.
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 6:24 pm

NER Track questions

Postby Morgan1 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 11:03 am

I have recently completed a track diagram of Alston NER in Templot, circa 1938/39. I would like to get the track as accurate as possible and would like society members to help me in this respect. I have quite a few questions which I hope can be answered by our more learned members. Any help would be gratefully received.
1) For general track I have used the templot NER 45ft rails 17 sleepers per length template.
Is this correct for 1938/39?
2)I intend to use the society ply 9ft sleepers.
Is this correct?
3)I have used the NER single junction sleepers (interlaced) for the turnout templates.
Is this correct or should I have used the P4-B7 LNER template on our website?

I intend to use C&L exactoscale chairs.I have a large stock remaining of the LNER 3 bolt S1 chair. However my reference books(The Alston branch by S C Jenkins and North Eastern Branch Line Termini by Ken Hoole) and some data on the Internet from NER track books suggest 4 bolt chairs were used around 1938/39. I am confused and would like some guidance if possible.
Thank you in advance,

John Palmer
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Re: NER Track questions

Postby John Palmer » Sun Nov 13, 2016 12:32 pm

I am no expert on NER track, as my interests lie further north in the North British, but my plans are also for a layout set in 1938/39, so I have had to address similar questions to yours.

As to (1), I think you may find an interesting link, as it gives the sleeper pitches you need for a NER 30' panel. I can't be sure from looking at pictures in Ernie Brack's album on the Alston branch of the size of panels in Alston station itself, but the picture at is worth a look because it very clearly shows such a 30' panel in use at Slaggyford.

As to (2) and (3), I am certainly planning to use 9' sleepers and sleepered leads for a NB layout set in 1939. Another of Fleetwood Shawe's shots, available on Ernie Brack's site at clearly shows interlacing of the sleepers on the turnout into the platform road, and judging by the locomotive livery and the road vehicles probably dates from the 1930's-1940's.

I assume from your reference to "NER single junction sleepers (interlaced)" you may have in mind information available in the NERA's facsimile publication "STANDARD RAILWAY EQUIPMENT – PERMANENT WAY, 1926" - if not, more details here: may also be useful,

To save yourself a lot of timber shoving in Templot, I recommend setting up the interlacing of sleepers on a few turnouts having crossings/switches in common use on the layout and saving these as library templates. These preserve the interlacing when reproduced in Templot. Once you start altering crossing angles you may well find the interlacing goes a bit wonky, but this approach should still reduce the amount of timber repositioning required.

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Re: NER Track questions

Postby Morgan1 » Wed Nov 16, 2016 10:01 am

Thank you John. Yours comments and references to various websites are extremely helpful. As I hoped information available from society members is always freely given. This has proved to me that however clever you are using search facilities ( I refuse to call them search engines!) you cannot find all the information that is available. You have given me enough information to answer most of my questions. Thanks to your reply I have also contacted the NER society. The 1926 book on track is on it's way to me.
Thanks again.

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Steve Taylor
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Re: NER Track questions

Postby Steve Taylor » Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:34 pm

I assume you have a copy of Ken Hoole's "NER Branchline Termini"? I'd have a good look at as many reference pictures as possible. Bear in mind with the mineral sidings at Alston there was a fairly weighty traffic, and by your time period some renewals will inevitably have been undertaken and i wouldn't be so fast to assume that strict NER practice was still being adhered to. Certainly spot sleeper and s&c renewals would bring some changes and though the 30' rails might still have a strong presence, particularly in sidings, I'd look closely at the LNER p-way booklet and reference that to whatever pics you can find. My own project is also an NER branchline and as late as closure in 1965, the platform road was still in 30' rail.

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Re: NER Track questions

Postby Penrhos1920 » Fri Nov 18, 2016 9:07 pm


You might be interested in pre-1908 NER template in templot. It's likely that the Alston track was laid pre-1908 and being lightly used was not relaid but just repaired as necessary so this pre-1908 template might be what you need.

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