Tag Archives: Doncaster Festival of Railway Modelling

Controlling Interests #1 Increasing Main Line operation

Although Fisherton Sarum is not currently set up, I am using the time between shows to make a few changes and additions to the operating system. These modifications include: the addition of a third controller for main line operation (see below), the installation of a Model Electronic Railway Group (MERG)  turntable control unit with stepper motor, moving of the signal control to the fiddle yard panels and changing all the point motors to slow acting Cobalt types. The other modifications will form the subject of future posts so to coin a phrase watch or follow this space.

N1 Class No 1822 trundles west with a rake of dia 1774 40T ballast hoppers. In the new scheme of things this will be driven by, and towards, the west end fiddle yard operator, with the signal operated from a remote switch on the fiddle yard indicator panel.

Whilst operating the layout at the Doncaster Festival of British Model Railways my fellow operators from the High Wycombe and District MRS, naming no names (Roger and Mark) hatched a plan for improved operation of the main running lines. Currently the layout has two Gaugemaster ‘W’ handheld controllers for traditional DC Cab control allowing either controller to control any section of the layout.

Our default operation is one controller for the shed area and one for the main lines. This does mean that only one of the fiddle operators actually drives the main line trains and does so in both directions. The suggestion was to add a third controller so that two can be used on the main lines, i.e. one up and one down, allowing each fiddle yard operator to drive the trains towards their end. This will also increase the likelihood of trains passing on the main too (already possible but meaning the shed movements having to stop). The plan also includes the addition of remote signal controls to the fiddle yard indicator panels to ease operation too.

Time has been spent this weekend modifying the control panel wiring for the new controller, along with the installation of the new Turntable controller (but more of this soon). The final part of the controller installation will be the wiring on the west end baseboard to a socket for the new controller (the wiring harness is already in place with suitable spare cores). Fisherton Sarum’s first outing with the new operation will be Tring and District MRC show 13th October 2012.

Highlights of the Festival of British Railway Modelling, Doncaster

Fisherton Sarum, as I reported briefly on my last post,  had a very successful weekend at the Festival of British Railway modelling, a couple of weekends ago now, held at Doncaster. The highlights of the exhibition can now be found on the British Railway Modelling website here along with some photographs and a video of the show that includes footage of Fisherton Sarum in action.

Fisherton Sarum taken just before the doors opened at the Festival of British Railway Modelling in Doncaster - February 11/12th
I am pleased, as I said in my last post, how well the layout was received by  the viewing public  despite being quite a distance from traditional Southern Railway Territory. I still am amazed that  three visitors to the show commented on the fact that they, like my own Dad, had bunked the shed in their younger days!

My collection of models representing the  locomotives that appeared on the Southern west of England line during the British Railways locomotive exchange trials in 1948, Bulleid’s Leader and his S100 Inspection Saloon / Sleeper coach inspired many comments and prompted much interesting discussion.

I am as ever very grateful to my Mum and Dad (who actually appears in model from in his short trouser days on the layout), and Roger, Mark and Daniel from the High Wycombe District Model Railway Society without whom I would not be able to exhibit Fisherton Sarum.

Fisherton Sarum at Doncaster Festival of British Railway Modelling this weekend 11/12th February

Fisherton Sarum is currently only making two appearances on the exhibition circuit this year and the first of which is this coming weekend 11th and 12th February at the British Railway Modelling magazine Festival of British Railway Modelling at Doncaster Racecourse.

21C6 heads west past the coal stage on Fisherton Sarum. Image copyright and courtesy of British Railway Modelling Magazine / P Bason

With over 30 layouts ranging from N to O gauges, many of which ( including Fisherton Sarum, see February 2012 issue), have graced the pages of British Railway Modelling Magazine and over 80 trade stands  there should be something for everyone.
It is also good to see that Fisherton Sarum will not be alone in flying the flag for Southern Railway / Region based layouts, these include Thornbury Hill, Brighton main line including third rail electrics in South London based C1962; Stodmarsh, East Kent Railway basedduring World War II; Soberton, the Meon Valley line in the 1950s and Lynton and Barnstaple Railway based Bratton Flemming in the snow!

A sneak preview and video of the some of the layouts attending include Fisherton Sarum can be seen on the shows website here, whilst an electronic version of the show guide can be viewed here

I shall be ably assisted by my Mum and Dad (who actually appears in model from in his short trouser days on the layout), and Roger, Mark and Daniel from the High Wycombe District Model Railway Society to whom I am very grateful and would not be able to exhibit Fisherton Sarum otherwise.