Tuesday, July 4, 2017

My Layout Project - West Ballarat Sidings

V/line T368 holds the main at West Ballarat as it prepares to shunt the sidings.

Been a while between drinks on this blog but while I haven't been out getting photos of Kiwi Rails finest working hard around Otago I have been busy building a layout. Oh and I also fitted in a trip to Melbourne earlier in the year as well.

Photos from my Aussie trip will be on the blog soon but for this post I'll give a rundown on my layout West Ballarat Sidings.

West Ballarat Sidings is a small shunting layout loosely based on the short Cattle Yards / Redan line in Ballarat, a large town in the great Australian state of Victoria.The layout is set firmly in the V/line tangerine era of the mid 1980's.

My inspiration to build this layout came from a few sources. The first being Mark Baus Victorian Railways website http://www.victorianrailways.net/ . This website is basically the online bible for fans of Victorian Railways. Heaps of photos and track plans, a great resource for those modelling Victorian Railways and a site where I've lost a countless hours of my life. The second being flickr. Now if you're into railways I have no doubt like me you've searched flickr from top to bottom looking for your favourite trains and railways. There is a huge amount of photos of V/line trains running around Victoria during the 1980's which is great for research.
Another great site is the When there were Stations site ( http://www.stationspast.net/). This site has a huge number of photos of stations, yards and other rail infrastructure from around Australia and another great source of information for modellers of Australian railways. 

One site that really gave me a kick in the arse to build something was Ben Grays blog on building his 1970's NSW shunting layout ( http://nswrintheseventies.blogspot.co.nz/ ). Ben has done a great job documenting his layout and how he went about building it.

General overview of the layout so far.

So far I've got the bench work done and laid the track. The layout is 300 by 60 cm and is basically an inglenook with another two sidings added. Included is a petrol siding and another serving Ballarat Seed and Grain, although this customer could change. The bench work is standard grid type with foam board over the top. Track is PECO code 100 with insulfrog medium radius turnouts. Not the most realistic track but absolutely bomb proof!

First series T 322 with a short train on the main.

So far I've attached my controller to the rails with some small crocodile clips. Shortly I'll get started on the wiring but every time I get in the shed I end up running a few shunting services instead. 

 T 322 in front of the fuel siding.

As I get more things done on the layout I'll update the blog. 

This is the first 'proper' layout I've started and I'm having a blast. If you're considering building something, DO IT! The hardest part is starting.

And that's about it.

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