4mm Podimore, well-scribbled

Discussion in 'Layout Progress' started by AJC, 20 July 2018.

  1. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    With the usual caveat that this may or may not happen, though we are (finally) in a position to have a house - and thus walls - of our own and I have one, and possibly two, walls of the end of garden office (10' 6" x 10' 6").

    Going all the way round is out and I want to do something that will be a suitable home for my somewhat eclectic tastes in stock and is flexible yet self-contained. Having spent a long time absorbing the works of Iain Rice, pondering what sort of railway I'd find fun and floated various ideas to myself, here's my latest flight of implausible nonsense which for the moment goes by the name Podimore. Now the real Podimore is a small village just outside Ilchester in Somerset, a town on the Fosse Way with Roman origins which flourished before the Black Death and then declined in subsequent centuries, mostly to the benefit of Yeovil. So far as I'm aware there was never a scheme to serve Ilchester with a railway so I've devised one. With one eye on Chard and Wells, I've imagined that the town's population was rather more than the thousand or so souls it actually had and merited the attentions (just) of both the GWR and the LSWR, much as Chard did. The GWR would have approached from, perhaps, Somerton while the LSWR, rather than climb over the ridge from Glastonbury via its share in the S&D or do complicated things with running powers to access Yeovil Town, I reckon they'd have taken off from Sherborne coming cross country via the Cadburys, roughly following the route of the A303. Like Chard, the two would have met at an end-on junction and a slightly uneasy cross-country route would be the result.

    Now even the LSWR wouldn't have been mad enough to try this and any Ilchester Railway scheme would probably have foundered before the 1896 Light Railway Act breathed a bit of life back into it whereupon it would almost certainly have failed. That said, there was a madcap enabling act for a roadside tramway from Somerton across to Castle Cary which I've mentioned before (and if OS mapping is to be believed, may even have been started!): The Somerton, Keinton Mandeville, Castle Cary and Evercreech Tramways but if this Wurzel-Wantage, could generate some local support and parliamentary time, then why not Ilchester?

    So why Podimore? Well there's obviously scope for a station (or two!) at Ilchester but I haven't the inclination to build a branchline terminus. Now, if a branch existed, I imagine intermediate stations 'serving' Bradford Abbas (or possibly Trent) and another lying inconveniently for North or South Cadbury but Podimore? Probably not. Or at least, not initially...

    Google Maps

    Add a dairy (not unlikely - there's a large cheese factory at the other end of Ilchester these days and this is good dairy country) and a halt would be sensible though common sense would indicate that the passenger traffic on the route would have been seen off by the motor bus fairly early on. And yet, and yet, the tramway... In my imagination, this bizarre scheme was rescued by limestone deposits at Keinton Mandeville proving rather more substantial than they actually are and concentrating its efforts on transfer traffic to the LSWR with a line in roadstone. And where should this meet the branch but Podimore? And then, of course, the Second World War happened and so did RNAS Yeovilton and the branches, marginal at best, became all of a sudden, useful.

    Podimore.jpg

    After all that warbling here's the scheme in 6' 6" x 2'.

    In evolutionary terms, first the single line arrived and with that, the siding. The dairy came along a bit later and rail access required a new signal box to look after the crossing shortly after the grouping, a mirror image of the one at Fawley (Hants) which might also offer a sense of the general aesthetic I have in mind. The single platform was, owing to the needs of the military, joined by a loop and a second platform in Exmouth Junction's finest concrete product. In this diagram, the right represents the line towards Ilchester (closed probably before Beeching, though milk and roadstone kept the line open until the early '70s, latterly contributing to the lengthening of Yeovilton's runway c.'67 and the dualling of the '303 a couple of years later) and the left towards Sherborne. The mineral branch has an exchange siding behind and below the platform road and the branch to the quarry dives under the road with the 'main' cut into the side of a shallow hill.

    Now I reckon this can be operated without a fiddle yard as a shunting exercise, with a yard at one end in post-normal passenger closure (the FAA might call for leave trains or other specials and who knows, their own loco-worked siding, off-scene?) or subject to a bout of exhibitionism, or relocation (or having the door open in summer) we could operate a full branch service with the odd through train from the Western.

    That should keep me busy...

    Adam
     
    Last edited: 29 January 2019
  2. Dan Randall

    Dan Randall Western Thunderer

    I like it Adam and look forward to the start of construction, whenever that may be. :thumbs:


    Regards

    Dan
     
    AJC likes this.
  3. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Well in some small way, it is. First the beginnings of a mock-up - I'll add some more to give a greater sense of topography but it's clear enough on the railway side, I think.

    Mock_up_001.jpg

    Mock_up_002.jpg

    More substantively, here's one of the first bits of physical infrastructure:

    Turnout.jpg

    The battered template behind isn't because I'm stockpiling plain track panels but because I've just finished loading a Salmon (more of which anon, and on my workbench thread).

    Adam
     
    matto21, Alan, Pencarrow and 7 others like this.
  4. allegheny1600

    allegheny1600 Western Thunderer

    Hi Adam,
    That is certainly an intriguing trackplan that I think would be great fun to operate. Your sketch is right out of the Rice works!
    Good luck with this.
     
    AJC likes this.
  5. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    There's quite a bit of school of Rice there, I admit! The fun of it (I hope) is that there'll be a fair range of traffic, requiring different stock and different movements. The potential is also there to go around the corner with the mineral branch and model the quarry - which is the kind of thing Jas Millam did with one of my favourite model railways, the Yaxbury Branch. I'll develop this theme once I've had the chance to think about it some more.

    Adam
     
    allegheny1600 likes this.
  6. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Some reviews to the trackplan have been thought about, more of which anon, but there is a complete structure in the form of a Ratio SR concrete hut modified following Peter Swift's article in MRJ 62. It seems that during the survey process some errors crept in and the ends as moulded were about 1mm too narrow and the all the windows 1.3mm too low. For some reason - and compared to photographs this was very obvious (and even obvious with the kind of casual observations available to passengers on the SE and SW mainlines!) - the roof was also a bit thin and lacked the characteristic step.

    Hut.jpg

    Making up the width was easy enough - letting a strip of 40 thou' into the gap made by cutting the ends down the middle - and moving the windows up was similarly straightforward. Thickening the roof necessitated a couple of layers of 20 thou' which aids modelling the step in the pre-cast roof. The chimney was only slightly modified - a joint line was scribed around the bottom and the top 'lid' had the edges inset.

    I suppose I ought to finalise the trackplan an then think about baseboards...

    Adam
     
  7. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    It does make you wonder how they go about surveying and recording details for models for there to be inaccuracies?
     
  8. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Well it was a long time ago; I suspect manual or human factors as the mouldings date from the early '90s. Both base and roof are the right width so I suspect that the attention was paid to getting the geometry of the ends right (which they are) and somehow the width between the ribs got used as the centre line. I guess that this must have happened somewhere between the survey data and the drawings being prepared and thus the moulds made. Why the windows are all too low though is anyone’s guess and the roof thickness might well be a complete screw up because it’s obvious that it’s out.

    The Swift article has drawings for the accompanying concrete tool shed which I may well make to match. He also produced the pair of transporter wagons but I think I’ll pass on those...

    Adam
     
    Last edited: 22 August 2019
  9. Pencarrow

    Pencarrow Western Thunderer

    I made these from plasticised in 7mm a while back...

    IMAG7608.jpg IMAG7610.jpg
    A PW hit is on the to-do list.
     
    jonte, Dog Star, Dan Randall and 3 others like this.
  10. matto21

    matto21 Western Thunderer

    Hooray! Finally a layout for all your wonderful wagons and stock!
     
    adrian and AJC like this.
  11. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Eventually!

    Adam
     
  12. Dan Randall

    Dan Randall Western Thunderer


    Great result with the concrete colour & texture Chris. :thumbs:


    Regards

    Dan
     
    Pencarrow likes this.
  13. NHY 581

    NHY 581 Western Thunderer

    Always nice to see a bit of South Western taking shape, especially in 4mm and featuring a bit of concrete.

    Quite challenging to paint but rewarding when done.


    Rob.
     
    AJC likes this.
  14. Pencarrow

    Pencarrow Western Thunderer

    Like the mini-layout model, very worthwhile to test ideas out IMO.

    IMAG7702.jpg

    Mine is 1/10th of layout size or 1:435! The 1:10 model:layout ratio is very useful in transferring measurements and scaling stuff.
     
  15. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Thanks Chris - I need to have another go at the model as I've rethought the track layout slightly. The loop is - and should always have been - a goods loop protected by a trap at each end - though only one is modelled of course - and I've reversed the inlet to the exchange siding. It will still be an awkward shunt but will cause fewer conflicting moves with the passenger line (though signalling to light railway standards should be reasonably minimal - Gunnislake, for example seems to have worked with outer homes protecting the running line and allowing it to serve as a headshunt: Gunnislake Signal Box). The loops on the Chard branch (GWR flavour) had more comprehensive protection!

    One thing I'm after is a drawing of a standard SR-type ground frame box with the rearward-sloping single plane roof. Second-hand, most likely as, although I imagine Podimore only gained a covered ground frame on account of servicing Yeovilton, I don't suppose it would have merited a standard SR ARP-type 'box (per Chiswick). Newcourt near Exmouth Junction has its 'charms' though: Newcourt signal box. Perhaps too much concrete?

    Adam
     
  16. Pencarrow

    Pencarrow Western Thunderer

    Adam, I'll have a look in my books tomorrow for you.
     
    AJC likes this.
  17. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Thanks Chris!

    Adam
     
  18. NHY 581

    NHY 581 Western Thunderer

    Hi Adam,

    I've thought of building Newcourt myself. Very different, very Southern and a nice painting and weathering subject..........and no, not too much concrete.


    Rob.
     
    AJC likes this.
  19. AJC

    AJC Western Thunderer

    Ok, so here’s the revised plan, roughed out in big red marker with traps marked and dimensions hinted at so as to mark out end boards for baseboards.

    Plan_C.jpg

    What isn't obvious here is the intended changes in level - the idea is that the main line leaves scene to the right on a rising gradient of 1 in 100 with the headshunt siding behind it level (though this also rises, very slightly, towards the offscene dairy). The exchange siding for the quarry line falls gently towards the stops before levelling out and (because the quarry owner and the farmer couldn't come to an agreement over his access lane) dips under a low overbridge to leave the scene.

    Adam
     
    Last edited: 12 September 2019
    Bullhead, jonte and Dog Star like this.
  20. Pencarrow

    Pencarrow Western Thunderer

    Only found photos so far, I know I've seen / got a plan somewhere though.