Saturday, 23 June 2012

Ash ballast for sidings

Over the last few months I have tried several methods of ballasting in siding areas.  All too often you see layouts where sidings have been ballasted almost to mainline standards when this simply did not happen on the prototype.  I have tried various products marketed as either ash or cinder ballast but all are way too course for 3mm scale modelling (and 4mm scale too come to that).  This process of trial and error even led me a few months ago to rip up and relay a couple of sidings on the layout.
I then saw an article on Chris Nevard's blog http://nevardmedia.blogspot.co.uk/2011/08/creating-effect-of-ash-ballast.html  which has saved the day.  I could not get hold of the exact same make of clay that Chris used but found a Korean product called "Mungyo" in my local branch of Hobbycraft.
You can even cover over existing conventional ballast (provided it's not been done to sleeper height).
In fact the old ballast really provides a good key for the plaster.
So thanks for posting that Chris, saved me ripping the darned track up again! 

Railex 2012

Way back at the end of May found me at the annual Risborough & District MRC show in Aylesbury.  Known as "Railex" it is in my humble opinion, one of the top 3 shows in the country with the emphasis on quality modelling.  I've not room on here for all the photos I took and anyway, you'll have seen other people's shots ages ago on the web or in online forums.
One layout does warrant special mention though.  I was delighted to see the layout built many years ago by the late Geoff Williams portraying the old LNWR Aylesbury terminus.  It was shown as a static exhibit but deservedly attracted much attention.  The following couple of views of this iconic layout only hint at the fine standard of this wonderful model.