Sunday, April 23, 2017

The making of a gully

Some more work this week has seen formwork installed to allow the deep walls of the gully that will be in the background behind the curved trestle bridge. I am still getting my mind around the fact that this is being built in O scale and everything will be essentially bigger than when the last gully was constructed in HO. Does this mean I will build it quicker?
Back in 2000 the first HO gully began

The completed HO gully. Two Main lines and a branch crossed the gully here.

After studying this corner module, I have worked out that I will need to complete most of the scenery before I move onto the next module. I will need to fix a backboard on two sides while it is out from the wall. Also because this module will contain the curved trestle it will certainly be easier to complete the scenery first. So this will slow down the work on the Broadwater module. Although the Eden baseboards have had a little scenery work done on them, I have not tackled any rockwork as yet.
Layers of foam added to the base to form the walls

Thinking ahead to when one day the layout will need to be removed from the shed, I thought of using some foam to form the  walls of the gully to lighten the load. I had a few thick sheets of the white foam on hand but not enough. I remember that a lot of modellers use a high density foam which is the yellow foam in the above photo. I found out that the Bunnings store at Dural had a supply, so my wife and I went for a drive out to this rural area to pick up two sheets.
The caption says its good to go
The manufacturer even lists "train bases" on the label so I knew I had got the right one. There was no intention to use it as a base at this stage but to cut it up to make the walls of the gully. Easy to cut with a pruning saw I soon had the bits I required stacked up on the board.

Looks a mess at the moment.
This foam is not as easy to work with as the white foam and was taking much more cutting to get it shaped how I wanted it. Well old habits die hard as they say and I then reverted back to my old method of using chicken/bird wire to form the contours that I wanted. It was a lot easier than trying to shape the foam. The grey block in the photo is a piece of florist foam that I will use later in construction.
This photo shows the extent of the trestle module.
The trestle will sit on a 30" radius curve, had I made it larger then it would have made this module larger and reduced the size of  the Broadwater module. I think it will work out okay.
The module starting to take shape.
The above photo shows the module taking shape. It is almost looking like a skeleton, you see the bones first then wonder what the completed person will look like when the skin is attached. One thing I wanted to include is a series of waterfalls cutting through the centre of the boards. It will have about three drops. To disguise the creek coming from the wall I will put the beginning around behind a hill.
I have been collecting many waterfall images from the internet recently to help put together the final scene. I will also put a walking track around the final scene.
Route of the creek
You can see that any scrap timber I have has been used. One of the last bits of the HO baseboard will live on supporting a waterfall. I have made a decision to use plaster for the walls of the gully as opposed to using the 'soft rock' technique. I know it would save weight in the long run, but it would be another learning curve and I have already used plaster on the previous layout.
I put some newspaper against the chicken wire so I can visualise what it may look like. This module will have to remain out from the wall initially so I can do the start of the creek as I won't be able to reach backwards to do it if it was placed against the wall. The good thing is that I can practice there as most of it won't be seen.
8A tries out the 'bridge'
The last photo shows NA 8A on the roadbed for the eventual trestle. I am looking forward to starting on the scenery on this module but know it will take some time to do it properly. As I see this as my last layout at this stage I want to get it right.

Ian Lindsay Website Update.
Another new item added to the On30 Puffing Billy range for Ian Lindsay is the VR rivetted cast iron water tanks (650 gallons). To quote the web site:
"These were often used in group of 4 or more as overhead loco water tanks on timber stands, as at Walhalla and Hillside. Also, the Weed Spray Train had two mounted on an NQR."
A photo of three of these tanks used for poison is shown on page 13 of the book "Focus on the Beech Forest Line Part two"

New cast iron water tank
Further details can be found here: Ian Lindsay Models


  1. HI Bob,
    Doing well, better than me at the moment, still can't get back to it. I used an electric kitchen knife to cut my scenery foam on Kamilaroi, worked well, no mess and easy to shape the foam. Jim.

  2. Hi Jim,
    I'll see if I can sneak it out for a try,