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August 6, 2009



This blog is intended to chronicle the design and construction of my new 3mm scale, mixed gauge exhibition layout. This is a logical development from my previous ‘Broad Gauge’ layout "Bagborough West". Having been the first and only one lo build a 3 mm scale, 7’0" gauge model I am mad enough to now attempt a mixed gauge layout. The gauges are 21mm and 14-2mm. ie Brunel’s 7’gauge and the standard gauge or as it was known in his time, narrow gauge.

The plan is based on the North Devon Railway which ran from Exeter to Barnstable. It was initially leased lo the Bristol and Exeter Railway but was taken over by the London and South Western Railway in 1862 having been changed to mixed gauge in 1860.

In 1824 plans had been put forward to construct a canal, to be known as the Public Devonshire Canal, from Weare Gifford on the river Torridge near Bideford on the North Devon coast to Topsham near Exeter on the South Coast. the planned route was similar to that later used by the North Devon Railway. I have imagined that the canal was actually built and that there was a canal/railway interchange built near Crediton where the river Yeo runs near to the railway. At the interchange there will be a goods transfer facility and also a Maltings.

The standard gauge trains are operated by the LSWR and the broad gauge by the Bristol and Exeter and later by the GWR after it adsorbed the B+ER in 1876.




The track plan was drawn using Templot and the templates were printed out on thin card on which the track would be built. The majority of the track is cross sleepered, to be built using plastic chairs on plywood sleepers and code 60 bullhead rail. The original broad gauge sidings still have baulk road made using copperclad for the baulks and 4mm scale bridge rail supplied through the Broad Gauge Society. The main board is 44” long and has two boards 21” long at each end which will fold over to make one box for transporting. The hidden sidings are on a separate board 24” square which will bolt on. The legs will be a separate sub structure on which the board will sit. The total size of the layout is 9’2” x 24” and will be operated from the rear.

Having drawn the plan I then made a scale model of the layout to make sure the ideas for the baseboards and the placement of buildings etc would work. This was especially important for the site lines into the sector plate on the left and the hidden sidings on the right. The latter will use cassettes made with aluminium angle. The sector plate will also have a cassette to allow turning of the train and to allow for the different gauges. As you will notice there have already been some changes to the final plan based on experiences from the model of the model.



From → Planning

  1. howard love permalink

    Dear Nick,have found your site after latest MT,superb! architecture brilliant ,the standard at Pendon is incredible admire your cottages and warehouses.Makes me want to give up and start again!Compact and achievable. Dabbled in 21 mm gauge back in the 70,s Best wishes, whats next ?
    !Howard , Cherhal.

    • Howard
      Many thanks for your nice comments. As to where next, it is difficult to say. I am slowly building stock for the standard gauge side of the layout and also have some more Broad Gauge stock to build. Maybe I should build some more buildings to try to wrestle the trophy from you!!
      Cheers Nick

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