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Club Night Activities - 19 May 2023

Updated: Jun 7, 2023

We start this update with a visitor. This N gauge layout - measuring 124cm x 34cm - was built by a club member. As can be seen, it is a small shunting layout (sometimes known colloquially as a 'plank') set in the 1950s/60s. Very much a personal recreation, operating this DCC layout is a most agreeable way to pass the time.

Moving onto club layouts, progress has been ongoing with Freidrichstrasse, with the river-end fiddle yard return board. Originally this was a high-level row of houses and some waste ground. Now the plan is to add a factory unit as well as a road overbridge - something to provide a little more visual interest.

To begin with, the track was laid a couple of weeks ago. Now the planning for the scenery has started. The two additional tracks will be sidings, just for show as neither will be powered. At the top of the board can be seen the mock-up for the factory. This is low-relief and will be surrounded by a small yard - likely to be concrete. Beside that, and running across the board width is the location for the overbridge. The plan here is for a mixed design, with the main lines (the lower four tracks) being crossed by a girder bridge, whilst the S-Bahn and factory siding being crossed by a concrete structure.

The factory is provided by a company in Germany called 'Müller's Bruchbuden' and is a resin kit. The parts are well cast and make a nice structure. Here it is painted and weathered, ready for adding to the layout. There are some creeping trees and ivy to add, but that will happen as part of the bedding in.

Away from the layouts, a frequent activity at the club is the fitting and maintaining of DCC chips. Here is an N gauge Dapol class 35 (Hymek), having just been upgraded. This locomotive proved to be an awkward customer when chip fitting, but we got there in the end!

Talking of Hymeks, the club had an unusual donation the other week...

This rather garish collective is from the Triang 'Big Big' range. It is of mixed origin, with the yellow and red Hymek plus the wagons originating from the 1970 'Freight Yard' train set, whilst the carriages are from 1968. Despite the colour scheme, the Hymek was a decent model in its day and was subject to many conversations into a reasonable depiction of the class in an era where ready-to-run 0 gauge was a rarity.

Perhaps the most distinctive feature of the sets was the track - a choice shade of red! Being plastic, it meant the loco is battery powered...perfect for the garden perhaps? In any event, this new club acquisition is planned to be given a new lease of life, replacing the original motor with something a little more modern and durable.

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