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Worsley Dale Garden Railway

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Hi Mick, I am glad I went module for my garden railway, taking longer to build for track right on the ground that method is the best way to go, I was wondering to use as a base for the track , will you be able to nail the track down or glue it down .

Look forward to seeing the track down and a train running, on that curve, what is the radius, my biggest radius is 24ft feet, have two 12 foot curves and the smaller ones 7  oot main line and 6 foot curves on the reverse loops.

Tony from down under

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16 hours ago, ThomasI said:

I see, you also turn away from the wood in the outdoor area.
For a track near the ground, the method with the aerated blocks is certainly the best...

Hi Thomas

Yes, the plywood base at ground level was a bad decision although to be fair the majority of the plywood I've just lifted was still in very good condition. It had been well sealed with several coats of bitumen and laid on a layer of roofing felt so it wasn't in direct contact with the concrete foundation but it only needs one weak spot to allow moisture in. It's another lesson learned.

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4 hours ago, aussietmrail said:

..I am glad I went module for my garden railway, taking longer to build for track right on the ground that method is the best way to go, I was wondering to use as a base for the track , will you be able to nail the track down or glue it down .

Look forward to seeing the track down and a train running, on that curve, what is the radius, my biggest radius is 24ft feet, have two 12 foot curves and the smaller ones 7  oot main line and 6 foot curves on the reverse loops...

I'm glad I chose to go the full garden railway route Tony and have a permanent layout outdoors - it's just a case of reaching the best decision as to what materials to use that will stand the test of time. I've just learned that plywood isn't a suitable choice for track base at ground level but it has lasted me over 7 years so perhaps that's not too bad a return.

It's the same method I've used on the viaducts so the blocks will accept track pins to hold it in place and then I'll ballast it and use exterior varnish to hold things firmly.

If I remember correctly, the curve in the most recent photo has a radius of seven feet which seems insignificant to one of 24 feet! In fact I can't say I've ever heard of a modular layout with a curve approaching anything near that size radius. How many sections do you need for that?

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A combination of damp conditions and a stiff breeze meant I haven't really enjoyed my time out on the layout these past couple of days but I've got the main outer running line relaid. I soldered on all the wires for droppers/bonding before laying the track which made things easier but I have yet to connect any of the wires together. The track has been lightly pinned so that I can make any necessary adjustments in alignment.

I decided to retain the points and will eventually reinstall the loop. The point closest to Stack Gill viaduct has been moved slightly closer to the viaduct away from the curve but first I had to replace the fiddly tie-bar spring which had corroded. The point nearest the shed has been replaced in exactly the same position as before and connected back up to its point motor.

The only real difference is that the wooden sleepers of the main line have given way to concrete sleepers but I may replace the loop with the old wooden sleepered track if I can salvage enough. I'd forgotten that I'd cut all the webs between the sleepers in order to increase the sleeper spacing when I initially laid the track so it could prove a bit awkward putting it back down.

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Nothing but rain here over the past couple of days so work on the outdoor section is at a standstill once again.

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Quote

If I remember correctly, the curve in the most recent photo has a radius of seven feet which seems insignificant to one of 24 feet! In fact I can't say I've ever heard of a modular layout with a curve approaching anything near that size radius. How many sections do you need for that?

 

HI Mick, I have two 24 foot quarter section and two 12 quarter curve sections the rest are 7ft curve main line sections, smallest curve is foot half curves for the reverse loops I finely finished setting up the rail bridge today very happy indeed, now I can make a move onto the next stage of the deck setting up.

Please send us thAt rain will need to cool down aker it peaking 40 degrees Monday ouch .

Tony from down under

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I was doing some much needed work in the garden a couple of days ago and took the following photos to show the current sorry state of Worsley Dale.

After removing the roof of the tunnel and the tunnel portals in order to relay the track beneath, one of my favourite spots for taking photos now looks like this.

20191207_122841.thumb.jpg.3e3422f64a7addcad8e98f4088791242.jpg

And from the other end:-

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I'm not happy with the roofing felt as the edges have come unstuck in this area - probably due to the fact that it did nothing but rain for weeks on end shortly after I had completed it. It was also a piece of cheap felt that isn't of the same quality as that I used previously.

It shouldn't take me too long to get all this back in order and the track wired up to the power bus that you can see running through the tunnel.

And just look at the state of my poor overbridge!

20191207_122851.thumb.jpg.2cec5844c64599e67c9cb0fce186fa40.jpg

Yes, those 3 segments were my bridge but they are to be replaced by one similar to the one I've used in the attic though cast in resin rather than stone.

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Hi Thomas, it's good to hear from you again.

Yes, hopefully by next summer it will all be back together and operational once again and without any further concerns about the track base rotting away.  It's something that needed doing and I'm pleased to have got it done - there I go sounding like Boris!

There's still work to be done but nothing that requires doing immediately so I can at least take things easy.

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Good Morning Mick,

                                        Quick question did you paint or  treat your old plywood base? The reason I’m asking is I’m thinking of adding a new plywood base to mine and I’m wondering if to paint it or treat it.

Deano 

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You could call it 'treated' Dean. Firstly I used a mix of bitumen adhesive thinned down with white spirits so that it soaked into the plywood boards. Once that had dried I painted the boards liberally with neat bitumen adhesive, giving them at least two coats. They ended up looking as if they've been wrapped in a rubber wrapper. On some of the boards along the bottom of the garden I actually used proper creosote first, the really smelly stuff, as the base coat. The trouble with using bitumen at this time of the year is it's difficult to work unless you can gently warm it first. Much better job for the warmer months. My ground-level boards were fixed in place on top of a layer of roofing felt before being covered in another layer of felt.

I managed to get 5 years out of the ground level boards which isn't a lot, but ground level isn't a particularly ideal location. I also pinned the track down which I suppose in itself introduces scores of tiny holes which could potentially allow the ingress of moisture.

If I remember correctly one of our members, Ian (IanR) of the Kirkfield & Warmsworth Railway, had mentioned that he was considering the use of masonry paint some years ago but I'm not sure he ever attempted it. It might be worth considering.

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I mean Mick's method is the only one that works.
I tried painting plywood (several layers plus primers), which was only successful with some bridges.
And even with these bridges that is a constant improvement.

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Hi Mick, 

Do you think you'd have had the same issue if you had stuck the track to your groundlevel boards rather than pinned?

Regards, 

Steve D.

 

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6 hours ago, Stese said:

....Do you think you'd have had the same issue if you had stuck the track to your groundlevel boards rather than pinned?...

I'm not sure Steve. I'm not saying that pinning the track had anything to do with the deterioration of my boards but the fact that it provides an entry point for moisture, however small that might be, is worth pointing out. I still think the fact that my boards were at ground level was the main cause of them failing. To date I've not noticed any problems with my raised baseboards where the track has also been pinned, but they haven't been in position for the same length of time.

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I've most likely been here before but I've just spent an enjoyable evening looking back over some of my old videos of the Selby Garden Railway. It was also somewhat emotional being reminded of the many hours I spent out in the garden with our little dog Charlie. I swear he used to enjoy seeing the railway developing! How quickly time passes us by.

I find it hard to believe that I still have the majority of the stock seen in those old videos, much of it waiting to join in the fun on Skew Bridge, and that it's almost all a decade or more old now. Those models have certainly stood the test of time and of the ones I've had the pleasure in getting back out recently all that's been required is a tiny drop of oil on the bearings to turn the clock back those ten years.

As much as I enjoyed the old Selby Garden Railway layout I have to admit that I much prefer Worsley Dale and I think the videos show just how much more appealing the new layout is. The breeze block elevated sections of the SGR looked exactly that and were difficult to disguise but while the ground level track section on Worsley Dale has proved more difficult to maintain it really does show off an outdoor model railway to its full potential. As for the elevated sections well I'm much happier with the current viaducts as opposed to the old plywood based one. It might have taken me ten years to get here but I feel the journey has been worthwhile. 

So with Xmas almost upon us and the start of a new decade just around the corner I would just like to wish everyone a very Merry Xmas and all the best for the coming New Year! I hope we can continue to share our experiences in this absorbing hobby for many years to come. 

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Mick, you have done so much to show how 00 gauge can work in the garden and perhaps more importantly how it can become part of the landscape so naturally. The difference between the Selby layout and Worsley Dale is marked, even though the first layout was inspirational in its time. Trevor Jones’s Flackwell Heath & Great Wakering, is a similar but larger superb natural railway in the garden. 

Thanks for keeping the website open and free, all at your own expense. Good to hear your memories of Charlie as well.

Enjoy the rest of the festivities and all the best for 2020 and whatever it throws at us.

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You're both way too kind, but thank you. I'll just have to make sure that I get Worsley Dale back up and running as quickly as I can.

I only recently discovered another section of viaduct parapet wall has been dislodged, not by cats or children this time but apparently by the bamboo growing just behind it. It appears that the strong wind has been blowing the bamboo about which in turn has thrashed the viaduct so I've purchased some more 'Gorilla' grab adhesive to effect the necessary repairs.

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I've taken advantage of the better weather to replace the displaced section of parapet wall along the top of Stack Gill viaduct.

The fact that the pieces have fallen forwards leads me to believe that it's the bamboo in the background that's responsible this time. During the recent strong winds the bamboo was being blown about fiercely and thrashing against the viaduct.

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So with a little Gorilla grab adhesive it's now been almost entirely replaced....until the next time!

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I must try think of something a bit more resilient to use for the walling along the top as it's becoming a bit of a chore to have to keep replacing it.

 

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You could reenforce them with copper wires.

Drill holes in vertically through the parapet wall into the structure. Insert in a solid core wire. Seal over the top with what every you are using as an adhesive.

If you are anything like me you will have metres of earth wire coiled up, striped form twin and earth.  Cocktail sticks will probably survive OK if you seal them in.

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