Mittwoch, 7. Dezember 2016

ÖBB Rh 2143 arrived

Roco's ÖBB Rh 2143 arrived today. It's a brilliant model with extremely fine detailing and the sound effect is simply amazing. It's not cheap, but definitely worth every Penny (if you still can get hold of one).

Montag, 28. November 2016

ÖBB Rh 2143 ordered

Roco's model of OeBB 2143.009-5 will soon join the fleet of my Austrian section "Falkenfeld" (Roco No. 72719). 
With the Valkenveld module (almost) complete, I am starting to make new plans. One immediate one will be the extension of a "mini-fiddle yard" for Valkenveld. The idea is to make it easier to switch locomotives without having to touch them by hand when removing them from the layout.

The second is to become serious with a diorama or module with an Austrian theme, "Falkenfeld" if you wish. Located in the East of Austria and timed in the second half of the 1980s, i.e. after the "computer numbering" was introduced but still all rolling stock in the "Blutorange" color scheme.

I already have a 2045 and 2067 in possession and have just ordered a - difficult to obtain - Roco model of ÖBB Rh 2143 (Roco No. 72719). The model is superdetailled and I can hardly await its arrival.

2143.55 with a short passenger train in Grafenschlag, 1986. Source: wikipedia

An overview of Rh 2143 images can be found here, here and here.

The model (in the unfortunate Valousek design) is tested in a Youtube video:

Information on the prototype can be found on wikipedia. The 2143 will be my "strongest" locomotive so far. I photographed a 2143 in operation on the Gutensteinerbahn last summer.

Spurweite:1435 mm (Normalspur)
Länge über Puffer:15.760 mm
Drehgestellachsstand:2.500 mm
Gesamtradstand:10.500 mm
Kleinster bef. Halbmesser:100 m
Dienstmasse:65 t
Radsatzfahrmasse:16,25 t
Höchstgeschwindigkeit:110 km/h
(2143.01–33 100 km/h)
Installierte Leistung:1.115 kW (1.495 PS)
Anfahrzugkraft:196 kN
Treibraddurchmesser:950 mm
Zugheizung:Motor: SGP S 108a
Generator: ABB-MQ BEK 212 spezial
Nennleistung: 240 kW bei 1000 V
Kupplungstyp:Turbogetriebe: Voith L 720 rU2
Achsgetriebe: SGP-AVD 240/175

Mittwoch, 16. November 2016

Video: from Ergernisse II via Looseinde to Valkenveld

Marco produced this video of his NS 2400 pulling a train over the layout he, Jasiu and I exhibited at Eurospoor and the open day of the OMC club. The train first switches on Jasiu's "Ergernisse" modules and then runs via Marco's "Looseneinde" into my Valkenveld layout.

Montag, 14. November 2016

Unusual visitors

During the Open Day of the Omroep Modelspoor Club (OMC) I had the opportunity to take some images of a fellow club member's Canadian National locomotives. The two GP9's fit quite nicely to the Valkenveld color scheme and the silos that are also common on North American layouts.

Maybe an inspiration for a future module?

Canadian National GP9 No. 1701

Freitag, 11. November 2016

Photo Shoot: NS 2437 working the Valkenveld team track

NS 2437 working the Valkenveld team track

Rob, Marco and I did a photo session one day before the open day of the OMC club on 12 November. This image of the Valkenveld team track was taken by Rob. It features my newly weathered NS 2437 on which I have also painted the handrails in the red-brown of the locomotive body.

Montag, 7. November 2016

Weathering NS 2437

I did a first layer of weathering on my Roco NS 2437. I applied a light wash of Humbrol enamel mat black and Humbrol enamel thinner to remove the shiny plastic look and blacken/highlight the gratings and doors. Excess paint was removed with a cloth. I also treated the bogies with the same black wash to remove the shine. However, more weathering still needs to be done to add a brownish, rusty color typical for bogies.

I prefer a visible, but quite "light" weathering on my engines. I also want to take some pictures on the layout with the proper lighting before continuing. This will give me a better view on how much more is needed to achieve the look I finally want to achieve.

The workspace ready for weathering.
The body of NS 2437 as it came out of the box, i.e. before weathering.

This image and below with the black wash as first layer of weathering.

Current state of NS 2437 on the layout.

Freitag, 4. November 2016

Updated track plan

I received a number of questions concerning the track plan of Valkenveld at the Eurospoor exhibition. So here is an updated version.

Here a plan in Anyrail. Valkenveld was not built using individual RocoLine tracks as this plan suggests. 

I adapted the original Inglenook plan to accomodate my needs:

1) The original plan was 4 x 1 feet (ca. 120 x 30 cm) which is fully sufficient for short British freight cars. For my Dutch 1960s layout I added another foot in length to allow usage of longer cars. As the two shortest track have an effective length of 36 cm, the longest three cars on my layout can be 12 cm each.

2) I placed the yard lead towards the back end instead of the front. This gives me better viewing of the trains with most scenery in front of them. This also allows better photography angles. Many model railroads have the track too close to the front edge which gives a toy-like feeling.

3) I wanted to have the longest track most to the front. Most of the switching is taking place on that track giving me easy access. Also, it allows me to model it as team track giving me plenty of opportunities to vary scenes of loading and unloading of various car types. In terms of variation and freight traffic I am a real fan of team tracks!

Montag, 31. Oktober 2016

Eurospoor 2016 conclusions

Three days of Eurospoor (plus one for setting all up) are an intense experience, but definitely worth it. Especially when you can enjoy operating a shelf-switching layout with a length of almost 7m with two other great guys, Marco and Jasiu.

I am really pleased with the looks and the technical performance of Valkenveld! Three days of smooth operations without a single technical problem. All engines crept slowly over the tracks switching and dispatching cars to the other modules. We mainly operated with Roco NS 2400 locomotives which are a real joy. The light and sound effects installed by Marco drew the attention of many visitors.

Valkenveld and the other modules received a lot of compliments and positive feedback which is really encouraging. It was great to hear that many visitors saw our modules that fit almost any home as inspiration.

Many commented that the impression of depth was really good, despite the real layout depth of only 30cm. They also felt that the scenes were not overcrowded and represented the 1960s in the Netherlands well.

Our next outing will be the Open Day of the OMC on 12 November 2016 in Hilversum.

The whole set-up with 5 modules, except the fiddle yard on the left.

Mittwoch, 26. Oktober 2016

Meet Valkenveld in hall 11 at EUROSPOOR

As mentioned earlier, Valkenveld will be exhibited at EUROSPOOR 2016 in Utrecht from 28 to 30 October. My module will be part of a 6,30 m long modular layout of three members of the Omroep Modelspoorclub (OMC) Hilversum. Our layout will be located in hall 11, stand 11A002, of the Utrecht Jaarbeurs.

I am looking forward to meeting any fellow model railroaders there!

One of the final preparations included the making of a barrier between the silo area and the track. After some trials with fences (too much blocking the view) and stones, I went for a simple solution with old rail sleepers. Also, the Volvo truck got weathered.

Dienstag, 11. Oktober 2016


A few "low quality mobile phone overview snapshots". I have taken them to see the general effect running up to "Eurospoor 2016" from 28-30 October in Utrecht. I am really pleased with the result so far. There is not much missing. A bit of weathering here and there, more weeds and plants, people to inhabit the place, some detailling on the buildings, etc.

Currently I am working on some stones that I will line-up alongside the silo area parallel to the track. The 3mm high stones will protect trucks to run into the tracks. I did not want a high fence or wall to hamper the views on the track.

Montag, 10. Oktober 2016

Backdrop scene fine-tuning

Two workers take a well-deserved break at the Valkenveld warehouse. The backdrop scene was changed slightly as I added more height with two more silo's and I weathered the oil tank.

The wire fence is from Model Scene (No. 48130) which I have spray-painted really, really thinly with a grey coat. The white oil tank is a left-over from Piko's Mineraloelhandel (No. 61834) and the dark tanks are from Auhagen (No. 80111) on which I closed off the top. They received a coat of "German grey". Nature is as usual a mixture of various Heki and Woodland Scenics materials. The ivy is from MiniNatur. The two non-working workers are from Noch (No. 15278).

Next step: some sand, dirt and weeds underneath the warehouse platform.

Freitag, 7. Oktober 2016

Backdrop scenery

Some progress on the backdrop area, meaning the layout section between the factory facade and warehouse facade. I added a tree (self-made by friend Rob) and some bushes, a path for the train crews to grab some coffee in town during breaks, and a small area for a tank and barrels.

As usual, the images will be used to fine-tune the scene.