My gauge 3 days

kevsmith Dec 9, 2018

  1. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    So the other great unfinished project from my past was the attempt to model my local station, Askam in Furness, in gauge 3. This was intended both to go out to shows and also be a semi permanent display at Barrow Hill roundhouse in the water tower building. It was going to be immense, 30 foot long and with two rows of parallel baseboards five feet wide. The practicality of actually moving it around hadn't been fully worked out of course!


    gauge 3 might not be that familiar to you but it was another name for 2 1/2" gauge. On the cusp of Model engineering you have the choice of using your steam locos to haul you around a track in which case it is 2 1/2" or modelling scale rolling stock and scenery in which case it is gauge 3. Scale can be either 1/22.5 or 1/24th so the bodies are the same as LGB but standard gauge not narrow gauge.

    Representing the Furness railway at the turn of the century the rolling stock would all be scratchbuilt including the beautiful Sharp Stewart locos in the distinctive Furness Indian red colour scheme


    I'd started with the station building. This grade 2 listed building was designed by the renowned Lancaster architects Paley and Austin in 1887 for the Furness Railway and survives today in quite good condition.


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    The station and the line feature a lot on my youtube channel and the International Railways section of this forum as it features a lot of interesting trains and main line steam specials

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  2. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    I had copies of the original drawings from the local County archive. Construction was MDF for the basic structure with the red sandstone stonework hand tooled in Red DAS modelling clay hand scribed to represent the blockwork. Pack after pack of it! as the model was six feet long. The roof closely followed the drawings with the roof joists and rafters in stripwood. The model was meant to look as if it was being reroofed so the interior details could be seen. The areas that were in situ had the roof slates represented by what seemed to be miles of scribed plasticard


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    The tilefloor was scribed and handpainted and all the furniture was measured of the surviving items still in the building to this day. I made a pattern for the fireplaces and the canopy supports and cast them in resin. The windows were also cast in resin

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    Before the layout itself was started the station building was taken to shows and garden railway events where it created a real buzz about the project.

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    Lots of work got it to the stage where I could begin to show the more developed station area. By now I had built the Signalbox and Askam Co-op store both still in existence and the Goods shed which was flattened many years ago. The front row of boards were also now semi developed and the two running lines were in with hand laid track and hand cut sleepers (Ties)

    Askam Co-op
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  3. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    The goods shed was built from dimensions taken from the surviving example at Drigg

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    The level crossing with gates added, the signalbox and Co-op

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    The first loco was the Sharpie 2-2-2WT which took a while to finish but once painted really looked the part. Getting the springing balanced right was a bit tricky.

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    Seen here with the start of an authentic freight train. all the wagons are scratchbuilt of course
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    Intended for batch building I made a whole set of patterns for the chassis and details for a gauge 3 Lancashire & Yorkshire railway 'Pug' 0-4-0ST with the chassis and valve gear being cut out on the pantograph engraver and the sandbox and toolboxes cast in resin.

    These diminutive locos were some of the smallest engines on British railways and thankfully a couple survived long enough to be preserved

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    All the locos on the layout were 12V DC and as they were relatively small I got away putting the larger Johnson can motors in them.
     
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  4. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    Coaching stock was again going to be late Victorian, 4 and 6 wheelers. The first one to be modeled was a bit oddball. The partron of the Barrow Hill Engine shed society was the then Duke of Devonshire, Andrew. When he found out I was going to model his ancestor's private saloon he offered me any help he could from the archives at Chatsworth House so the unique vehicle was finished first

    Everything about this coach was a bit weird!

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    Seen here with a 3rd class 4 wheeler that the common folk would have been in

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    I used to use different colour Plasticard to model stock so that people at shows could make sense of the construction details when I was doing modeling displays at shows

    as there was nothing commercially available I made patterns for the most common Wagon parts and had them cast in White metal by CCW

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  5. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    The last gasp of the project was the Sharp Stewart 0-4-0 tender engine. These ancient locos were some of the first on the Furness railway..

    Amazingly two survive! After disposal by the Furness they went into industrial service converted into saddle tanks. Plinthed as static displays the Furness Loco trust acquired No. 20 and rebuilt it back into its original form.

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    Its ten year boiler certificate has just run out but it will be back in a couple of years

    the model partially started

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    So what happened?

    When we moved to the Lake District Barrow Hill was just too far away and I no longer had access to the Sheffield 0 gauge group club rooms to store it either so it had to go

    The buildings and the 0-4-0 went of a guy in the Midlands where the station is the centrepiece of his G3 layout. the rest of the stock went to a dealer down south.

    Of course it did clear the decks for my Z gauge escapades!
     
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