Despite having lots of distractions over the last week, I have finally got the wiring done on the first baseboard, along with a tiny bit of progress on the scenery.
Here is the first loco to run with the completed wiring. I have wired for DCC, but this test was under DC, using my very bare test loco.
No short circuits - and the frog was wired the correct way around first time - definitely a first for me! After careful thought, I decided to wire up the waggonway too. Originally, I was thinking of having it purely for decoration. Being able to run the occasional train would be fun though!
In other news, I am slowly progressing with the scenery. I have laid foamboard down in front of the mill to bring the ground level up to the correct height for the mill yard. I have also put a ramp in where the roadway will be. I added thin ply to the front of the trackbed where the retaining wall will be. I plan to use Wills stone sheets to finish it off. After considering various options, I think this will give the closest representation of what I am looking for here. I shall alter the stonework to reduce the size of the larger stones and to make the joints seamless. The real skill will be in colouring the individual stones to make the wall look the part for Dunnerdale. Here are a few photos, including a drawing of the tramway bridge, to give an idea of what it will look like.
The real challenge is trying to imagine what the landscape must have looked like before the mill, the quarry and the railways arrived. I guess everything between the stream and the road at the back of the layout would have been altered substantially from its natural form.
I got hold of some of the Noch fern kits - here is a photo of what you get in the packet. Nine paper ferns, coloured and more or less already cut out and ready to apply to the scenery.
I have a packet of the Busch ferns on the way, for comparison.
I don't really have time to build up a large stud of locos and rolling stock for the Ulpha Light Railway for the time being. Instead, I shall run things in 1950s/1960s mode using mainly BR stock, assuming they have running powers. A new loco is a Class 28, fairly essential for the Furness area in the 1960s. It only arrived yesterday. I have yet to convert it to P4 standards.
Finally, here is a photo of the stone samples I got from Dunnerdale on my walk a week last Monday. A wide variety of colours in there, once I had washed the stones. No gold, unfortunately! I shall use these and the photos I took for reference when painting walls and buildings. I may use a few of the stones in the stream too.
Overall, it feels like it has been a really good few days, despite not getting much done. With the completion of the wiring, at least one aspect of the layout has progressed beyond how it was when I inherited it.
Before I can do much more to the scenery, I will need to design and build the waterwheel. Several issues depend on exactly how tall and how wide I make it. I have decided, after much browsing of the Internet that a breastshot wheel is most suitable for this site.
In the diagram, the water comes in from the left and drives the wheel anticlockwise as we are looking at it. I am thinking I may have to get the wheel to rotate...........