Thursday, 29 July 2010

Do as I say, not as I do .....

Oh dear, I believe I've been the victim of a 'good' idea I had a year ago. When putting Chwarel Bach together it seemed like a good idea to ballast with a polyfiller, sand and powder paint mix. It certainly gave a quick result. The first time I used the layout in anger at the Corris model railway show all worked remarkably well. Since then it's sat upstairs in my playroom, pressed into service from time to time as a test track or somewhere to let completed engines run in by lapping the circuit. A creeping and increasing deterioration in the running quality began to make itself felt. After spending a lot of time looking at both loco mechanisms and the track I came to the conclusion that the problem was caused by the ballast. It seems that as well as the usual amount of airborne dust, the pollyfiller is also contributing to a fine layer that inhibits efficient collection of current from the rails. There may be issues with a fine layer creeping into the gap between fishplate and rail further contributing to the embuggerment. I think cleaning followed by sealing the surface of the ballast with dilute PVA is the way to go; meantime have a pretty picture of my latest loco to emerge from the paintshop on the offending length.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

The return of the chipboard monster

Thanks to a chance trip up the Cambrian Coast  a couple of weeks ago I find myself with renewed levels of enthusiasm for Morfa and have consequently been attacking pine and chipboard with vigour. I'm pleased to say that as of today the baseboard decks are complete, the box beam trackbed is in place and the backscene fixed where necessary.

Of course there's still a long way to go but I'm almost at the stage where the bits I like least, butchering wood, are over.