Progress with Slattocks Junction

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JFS
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Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 3:47 pm

Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby JFS » Fri Dec 27, 2019 11:04 am

John Palmer wrote:... gradient post on the Werneth Incline marked 1 in 27


You are quite right John - well spotted!

Dave Holt
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu May 28, 2009 9:44 pm

Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Dave Holt » Fri Dec 27, 2019 8:14 pm

Only travelled down it once, and never up, in all the times we used the train from Oldham (Central) to Manchester. It would have been 1957 or 8 and my mother and I were on an epic train journey to Thurso, in the winter. It was already pitch black when, after leaving Werneth, we didn't arrive at Hollinwood, as we should have! My mother was in full panic mode, no doubt imagining all the missed connections along the rest of the journey but, being in a non-corridor coach, we couldn't contact the guard and no mobile phones, of course. Equilibrium was only restored when I later recognised Newton Heath shed - but on the wrong side!
The rest of the trip was a bit of a marathon, but did eventually arrive safely at our destination. Boy was it cold and wind swept up there at that time of year.
Dave.

Tony W
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Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:42 pm

Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Tony W » Sun Dec 29, 2019 10:06 pm

JFS asked
Are you sure about that Tony? Oldham (Werneth) was at the top of the 1:37 and Chadderton was at the bottom


To be honest, Howard, no, I'm not sure. Coal to this area seems to have come from the west of the country as well as the east. We know plenty of coal came round the loop from the Rochdale direction with wagons being dropped off at various locations such as Milnrow, Shaw, Royton Jct and Oldham (various sites). Some may even have travelled further afield through Clegg Street and down the OA&GB. There is evidence that, certainly in the 60's, loaded coal trains were taken up the gradient through Hollinwood to Werneth. Presumably this coal must have come from the Lancashire coalfield. With this alternative route it wouldn't have made sense for trains to use the Werneth Incline unless they were travelling to Chadderton.

The movement of goods in this area would make a fascinating study in itself but for the time being suffice it to say we still need more minerals for Slattocks!!

Tony

Tony W
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Tony W » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:46 pm

It’s been a while since anything about the layout has been posted here but this doesn’t mean that there has been no progress on the layout, in fact, far from it. Slattocks Junction was due to appear at Scalefour North this year and the group had been working really hard to get the layout to a ‘presentable state’. As such nobody really had the time to take any good pictures therefore any pictures shown in this update were really taken for our own use, and usually quickly at the end of an evening. This means that some of the pictures may be up to nearly 12 months old. What we don’t have are any recent pictures to show the layout in its current state.

Slattocks Junction is, of course, based at Dean Hall, the clubhouse of the Manchester Model Railway Society. Due to the Corona Virus lockdown this has meant that there has been no work on it for several weeks. However, this has not really been a problem as we all have enough to do at home. It’s an ill wind …….!!

Anyhow, back to the layout. As was explained earlier one of the main tasks last year was to develop structures including bridges and tunnels. It was really important to get some of these sorted as without them the scenery at the ‘rural’ end of the layout simply couldn’t be progressed. Here we had a problem. The shape of Slattocks meant that it was almost inevitable that for the tracks to disappear off scene some sort of bridge or tunnel would have to be used, with the latter being the least preferred option. After a number of experiments it was decided that the latter was the only option which led to another problem. As mentioned at the beginning of this thread it has always been the intention of the layout to pick out themes from the area surrounding Slattocks. The problem is there are no tunnels close by. However, it didn’t take us long to realise that we could still stick to the themes of the line by choosing the nearest tunnel to Slattocks, at Summit, a few miles north of Rochdale. Enter problem No 3. Summit Tunnel is a single bore twin track structure whereas we have got 3 tracks to accommodate. How could we justify such a change to the structure without a realistic story backing our rationale? The answer lay in the minor tunnel immediately before Summit which Todmorden Road uses to cross the line. This tunnel entrance is a far more decorated structure and to this day has the only known example of the Manchester and Leeds Railway crest on it (please correct me if that’s wrong).
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Immediately before the minor tunnel entrance is an aqueduct carrying the River Roch. This would make an excellent natural view blocker on the layout to disguise the tracks disappearance through the backscene.
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Everything on the railway around the Summit area is built of stone and we assumed we would just make a wider version of the tunnel and aqueduct. This assumption was quickly vetoed by Dick, our civil engineer supremo who stated that there always had to be a reason behind an alteration to the prototype otherwise visual credibility would be lost. So, it has been assumed that whilst it would have been perfectly feasible for a 3rd track to be added on the Manchester (up)bound side of the layout starting immediately after the main tunnel exit (note this doesn’t appear on the layout) this would have required widening Summit Minor. As this would have to have been done with the railway still operating the new structure would have to be of different construction to the original. However, given the importance of the tunnel mouth, with its Manchester and Leeds Railway crest, we have assumed that it was still built of stone using the material from the ‘up’ line demolished wing wall. This wing wall was replaced at a lower cost using engineers blue brick. Engineering difficulties with reconstructing the aqueduct over a live railway meant a phased total rebuild of this structure. This structure has yet to be finished on the layout.

So there it is. One little area of the layout but with a lot of thought behind it!!

Construction
Since the main part of the structure was going to be in ‘semi-dressed’ stone it was decided to see if this could be replicated using the laser cutter. First attempts were disastrous, replicating the stone of a run-down farm building, but as more experiments took place the stonework became more representative of what we were aiming for. It’s still not perfect but is as close as we can get without spending a great deal more time on it.
The basic structure was drawn out using CorelDraw and a mock up cut in card to see if it all fitted.
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The great advantage of doing this is that if all is OK the same drawing can be developed to provide the full artwork for the complete cut. This was not an easy task to begin with as the stones had to be redrawn to ensure the correct cut of the laser was made. In all about six stones were redrawn, using actual photos as the starting point but were saved after manipulating their shapes, ie, expanding them in various dimensions, compressing them the same way, reversing them, inverting them and doing just about everything else possible to give a variety of stonework on the structure. However experience taught us that with laser cutting it is very easy to get an obvious pattern appearing making for an unrealistic appearance. How do we know……? The great thing is apart from the basic structure all the cutting is in paper or card so mistakes didn’t prove to be that expensive.

The basic structure was cut in thin ply onto which the card stones were stuck using PVA.
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Copings were made from plastikard and scribed appropriately. The segmental arch was also constructed of plastikard. Inspiration for this came from P77 of ’Bridges For Modellers’ by LV Wood.
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The crest is also made of plastikard, punched with the correct date which can just be seen in the photograph.
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Once completed the whole structure was sprayed with Halfords Grey Primer before brush painting with acrylics.
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Apologies for the quality of the pics. The lighting in Dean Hall is hopeless for this type of photography, and the stonework looks a lot better in the flesh!!

Next up will be the Bury line tunnel. Altogether an easier structure with absolutely no back story to it!!

Tony

Tony W
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Tony W » Fri May 08, 2020 2:00 pm

The idea for the Bury line tunnel came effectively by default. In reality the tracks up to Rochdale and those to Bury part at Castleton South Junction. On the layout there is simply not the room to show this split effectively. As stated in the previous post a tunnel was the least favoured option but having gone down that route for the line to Rochdale there was absolutely no way we could avoid having another tunnel mouth for this line without modelling a false looking landscape. It was therefore decided to have this tunnel mouth made of brick and of plain appearance. A drawing was made and a mock up produced to see that all was well.

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Once teething problems had been sorted the final version was cut and constructed.

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This was followed by painting and fitting prior to the whole area being covered in Sculptamold.

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Please remember that although these two lines are disappearing from the main scenic boards in roughly the same direction they actually represent two sides of a triangle. We had to get our heads round this when studying stock movements in the area!!

Tony

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Tue Jun 30, 2020 2:40 pm

Tony's photos show lots of foam that needs turning into scenery. The group have spent a long time trawling Youtube looking at various people producing scenery using many different techniques. I found Luke Towan's videos most interesting and a read of a thread on RMWeb opened up further interesting ideas. One thing that came through from the RMWeb thread was that the Noch Grassmaster we had was not exactly the best machine to use for this and there are far superior static grass applicators on the market. The thread is an interesting read and several modellers gave the RTS Greenkeeper high praise. https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/64167-static-grass-tips-and-techniques/

Looking to find a supplier for the RTS machine I came across http://microrama.eu/ who stock the product but also have a Youtube clip which shows how to make scenery using static grass applicators the like of which I have never seen before. Anyway, inspired by the results shown in the clip I duly ordered one, not cheap for sure but that'a an advantage of being in a club!http://microrama.eu/blog/magigras-the-revolution-of-your-miniature-landscape/

Whilst waiting for it to arrive I set about trying to emulate what was being shown on the microrama video using the Noch Grassmaster and the static grass fibres I had to hand. This was all set up using a piece of the foam which has been cut into small pieces. A coating of Sculpamold was applied so that it looks identical to the work we have already undertaken on Slattocks. This was then painted using a cheap brown acrylic paint from Hobbycraft.

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The French video shows the use of a spray as an adhesive so not having any of that yet I got some very cheap hairspray from the local chemist, £1 per can and used that instead. A quick spray and then the static grass was applied in the same way that the guy on the French video did using one size fibres, another spray of the hairspray, a different length of fibres and another spray etc until I started to get a result with some depth. A lot of layouts using static grass look like a bulldozer has trampled all over it and that was most certainly NOT the impression we want on Slattocks. Using the Noch Grassmaster with fibres from several different sources produced something which I was rather pleased with and showed that this technique can be used to produce a very acceptable result.

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The RTS arrived from France today so once I have prepared some more test pieces to use I will try it out and post the results so we can compare the difference between the old Noch Grassmaster (over 10 years old) and the RTS Grassmaster.

Ralph
Knowing that the RTS Greenkeeper is capable of getting the fibres to stand better than this I am quite looking forward to doing some more tests with it to compare the results. By using multiple applications as shown in the French video I think it shows just how effective scenery can be made - it is just unfortunate for us that we have acres and acres of land to work on - thank goodness I am not the only one in the group! Don't forget there isn't any PVA of glue used here just hairspray and it dries fast very quickly.

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bécasse
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby bécasse » Tue Jun 30, 2020 6:43 pm

Here are a few photos, taken several years ago at an exhibition at Laval in north-west France (and some 600 km from my current home in le Luxembourg belge), of my contribution to "Les croisées de l'étroit", where, although there is some basic contour structuring, much of the 3D nature of the scenery has been built up by repeated applications of cheap hair spray and fibres of various lengths and colours, the depth of which exceeds two centimetres in places. The scale is 1:87.

Incidentally, as a member of the MMRS of well-over fifty years standing, and the person responsible for the scenery on the very first P4 layout to grace an MMRS Christmas Show (back in 1971), I follow the development of Slattocks Junction with great interest.
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ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:03 am

First trial of the RTS machine has proved very encouraging but I have had to prepare more bits of expanded foam to work on to check out the results. I expect to be able to show more results in the next few days once I have had chance to get to grips with this machine.

Ralph

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Sun Jul 19, 2020 10:05 am

Took longer than I expected but managed to do some testing yesterday with this RTS Grassmaster. I was using all the products I purchased from Microrama and the results were, to me, very encouraging.

Ralph

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Alan Turner
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Alan Turner » Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:23 am

I found this series from PECO quite good: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jkLhq2Q39s&t=62s

regards

Alan

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Wed May 12, 2021 6:42 pm

It seems that we have reached the end of lockdown and can get back to doing some work actually on the layout from next week. During the 14 month lockdown and when it was actually allowed I hosted a garden get together for a few members of the Manchester club. Regulars who turned up for a natter were Tony Williams, Richard Dunning, Dick Petter and Jeremy Suter. This all came to a stop last autumn but we did manage to meet again on the 21st April when 3 of us actually met sat inside the awning of a tent as the weather was pretty dire that day.

Here are a couple of photos taken earlier today of 3 of us putting the world to rights and talking about various modelling subjects. Today it was resin casting and items of scenic interest although the work Jeremy has been doing making masters for his railmotor eclipsed all our offerings, superb work and for those who have ordered kits it will be worth waiting.

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Jeremy Suter and Tony Williams enjoy the sunshine.


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Ralph Robertson, Tony Williams and Jeremy Suter in the last garden meet (hopefully)


Next week it is back into Dean Hall and putting all the models we have all been working on in place on the layout. Hope to take some photos showing some progress that we have made.

Ralph

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Wed May 19, 2021 8:03 am

Yesterday we were able to get back into our clubrooms to resume work on Slattocks but only of course a group of 6 people. The layout itself was covered in quite a thick layer of dust since the opportunity had been taken during lockdown to rebuild the toilet facilities in the clubrooms and we had never had to think about dustsheets in the past - something we will do in future. 3 hours with a vacuum cleaner sucked it all up and now the track needs cleaning prior to running the reopening train next week (hopefully).

Rob Ogden brought in the shops which he has been working on for the last few months, these were shown before on my workbench thread https://www.scalefour.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=89&t=6907&start=25 and here, for Paul Willis, is a taster of the superb job Rob has done on detailing this model.

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Ralph

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Thu May 20, 2021 8:37 am

Here is a selection of photos of the completed model. The hardware shop will have some 'clutter' on the forecourt outside and the hearse will be parked up waiting for the next job.
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Paul Willis
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Paul Willis » Thu May 20, 2021 9:15 pm

ralphrobertson wrote:Rob Ogden brought in the shops which he has been working on for the last few months, these were shown before on my workbench thread https://www.scalefour.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=89&t=6907&start=25 and here, for Paul Willis, is a taster of the superb job Rob has done on detailing this model.


Ralph, thank you that is quite superb. Only one question, as I can't quite tell from this angle - what colour paint did he use for the pools of oil on the floor underneath them??? ;-)

I should jest - one of my Ducatis went off in shame to the local bike shop today. It stopped running a few months ago, and I've intermittently tried to find the fault on it. Whilst I have fuel, compression and spark, it still stays mysteriously dead. So it's off to have a proper diagnosis and hopefully an application of a large tickling hammer in just the right spot...

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

Lindsay G
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Lindsay G » Thu May 20, 2021 10:38 pm

These interiors look absolutely superb. Who needs to look beyond the Society for Inspiring Modelling?

Lindsay

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Wed May 26, 2021 9:17 am

On our second visit to the layout we managed to get trains running again and placed all the completed buildings except the mill and the church on the layout. These photos show the 'town' end of the layout and the incomplete station building is on the top of the bridge and the platforms are actually in the fiddle yard.
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Station Road or Manchester Road (we haven't decided yet but have street plates for both) has Rob's shops and my Langan, Stubbs & Whitnall factory on it and there will be a small newsagents kiosk on the top by the station entrance that has yet to be built. Here is a picture of the buildings loosely placed.
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The road leading up to the station has the terraced houses and a couple of factories on it. The area between the road and the railway will have a war memorial.
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There's still a lot to do but at least we can now get on with the job.

Ralph

Terry Bendall
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Terry Bendall » Wed May 26, 2021 9:43 am

ralphrobertson wrote:There's still a lot to do but at least we can now get on with the job.


And get it ready for showing at Scalefour North 2022? :)

Terry Bendall

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iak
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby iak » Wed May 26, 2021 10:06 am

C'est magnifique... :shock:
Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth....
Albert Einstein


Perfection is impossible.
But I may choose to serve perfection....
Robert Fripp


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Dave Holt
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Dave Holt » Wed May 26, 2021 3:26 pm

Ralph.
The buildings really are beginning to transform that end of the layout and, together with your magnificent mill, firmly anchor it in its south-east Lancashire location.
Looking forward to seeing further scenic progress.
Dave.

ralphrobertson
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby ralphrobertson » Wed May 26, 2021 6:43 pm

Thanks for the kind comments. The buildings are all copied from prototypes, nothing is invented here. The Manchester Libraries website has a huge collection of photos showing scenes, buildings etc and it is easy to find something that you can make a model of. You can browse these collections for hours.

https://images.manchester.gov.uk/index.php?session=pass

Ralph

JFS
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby JFS » Wed May 26, 2021 7:32 pm

Dave Holt wrote:... firmly anchor it in its south-east Lancashire location...
Dave.


How can you say that Dave? This IS Lancashire - there is nowhere else :D

When I was a lad, I was convinced that Liverpool was EAST of Manchester because that was where the East Lancs Road went to!

Infact, I still have an issue with East/West as a consequence!

Best Wishes,
Howard

Tony W
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Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:42 pm

Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Tony W » Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:54 pm

Just prior to the first lockdown the group was busy preparing the layout for an appearance at Scalefour North. It would have been a log way off finished but we wanted the layout to look presentable. Although we were close to our targets work did, of course, come to an abrupt halt. It was, therefore, pleasing to see that after only 3 weeks back working on the layout the first milestone was met. Colour could be seen for the first time!! This may not seem that important to people reading this but to members of the group this was a huge psychological milestone.

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Rob Ogden applies colour to the scenery for the first time
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All the white area will be covered with static grass and other foliage and this was a first base coat before the grass is applied. It's strange how colour makes the area look bigger!

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This week saw another milestone met with the layouts own lighting installed for the first time. There's still plenty of work to undertake on this but things are starting to get exciting!!

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The lights are turned on for the first time!!
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Opportunity was taken to provide another coat of paint to the scenery. A different colour was used this week which is more in keeping with the soils found in the Slattocks area.

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A derogatory comment meant the colour was correct!
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When it was finished a comment was passed that it made the layout look horrible. The perfect compliment - now we know we've got the colour right!! Please note this will all be green when finished!!

Tony

Dave Holt
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Dave Holt » Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:48 am

Tony,
Great see the progress with Slattocks. I won't comment on the shade(s) of brown, but it is certainly much easier to see the profile of the ground than it was in all white.
Looking forward to watching further developments.
Dave.

Suddaby
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Suddaby » Sat Jun 19, 2021 8:56 pm

Hi guys,

That's starting to look rather nice, particularly the "Town End" grouping of buildings.
Look forward to seeing the layout in the flesh "eventually"!

All the best,

Kevin
Rochdale MRG
45509 Division

Tony W
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Re: Progress with Slattocks Junction

Postby Tony W » Thu Sep 23, 2021 3:13 pm

DOH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Prior to lockdown last year the group had been very busy preparing the layout for a visit to Scalefour North. For the first time for quite a while speedy progress was being made. It was duly reported that we were focusing on the structures on the layout. This included the structure below:

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The original structure
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Everything seemed in order, running well as we went into lockdown. And then the clubhouse closed and didn't reopen for a long time ............

Roll forward to summer this year and the easing of restrictions. On our first meet up it was decided to test the layout to see if it has suffered from the long period of inactivity. The layout performed impeccably BUT different (new) stock was used to test which had been constructed during lockdown and had not, thus, been used before...... and some of this new stock fouled one of the side walls of the tunnel....DOH!! Two options were available to us. Either, split the structure down the centre to drop an extra piece in...that idea was considered for about 3 milliseconds before it was scrapped, or remove the whole structure and make a new one, salvaging what parts we could from the original. So it was back to the drawing board (computer screen actually).

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The dirty deed done!!
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This wasn't such a problem as most of the structures are laser cut from card with a plywood framework. However, it was an irritant that we could have done without and should have been avoided but we were hurrying when the error happened, but hey, we're only human and stock construction kept peoples sanity during lockdown!!

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This has now been fitted to the layout and encased in scuptamold and a base coat of paint applied. Had all this not been required we may possibly have had this area of the layout covered with static grass prior to visitors attending Septembers Scaleforum event in Manchester. As it is a coat of paint will have to suffice!

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The revised structure
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Tony


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