Middlewood Bank TMD

Note:- Following our 2013 exhibition this layout has now been broken up and the salvaged parts will be used towards the building of a new version.
The reason behind the dramatic decision to scrap the layout was because even after rebuilding the storage sidings at the rear and doing a lot of work on the scenic sections, there were still serious running issues due to the gradients and the existing boards were not easy to modify.
It was decided that a fresh start was the only option to finish up with a reliable layout.

This layout started life in 2008 as a totally DCC operated system. The main theme of the model was to be based around a "Container Terminal" where trains could have their container loads loaded and off-loaded by use of a model crane by Heljan.
It did get to the stage where it was ready for exhibiting in this form and indeed made its first public showing at Martin Mere models and crafts show. Unfortunately the Heljan crane failed on that occasion with the cables becoming detached from the pulleys inside the head unit. This was very carefully dismantled by one of our members and got working again in time for our 2010 exhibition but again the same fault occurred mid way through day one of the show. Checking on the Internet to see if we could obtain any replacement parts for this it would seem that the model has been discontinued, so no doubt there have been problems elsewhere with it?
It has now been decided that the model be completely revamped and its theme changed to something more reliable. To this end a team under a new layout manager has made a start and as it develops then the pictures below will be updated to show the changes.

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The carriage maintenance depot that has now replaced the original container yard where the Heljan crane let us down so badly.

Another view of the depot showing part of the refueling bay and storage tanks. The carriage washing plant is just visible in the top right.
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Click for larger size
A closer view of the washing plant. The main running lines of the layout are just visible on the left where they pass under the depot.
A view looking along the front of the layout from the right hand end towards the maintenance depot. The line going off to the right past the signal box leads to the old preserved line which is just out of shot.
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click for larger size
The aggregate works at the right hand end of the layout
Another look at the aggregate works but this time looking towards the front of the layout.
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Click for larger size
Oh dear! It looks as though some poor train spotter has leaned too far over the bridge parapet in his enthusiasm.

This page updated 23rd April 2013