“Hi Al and all the dedicated followers
In a previous post, you mentioned your fascination for wartime dioramas within the railway theme and I guess, thanks to my past, I am no different.
I have attached a few pics of just the one side of my very much in progress layout which is set on or around 16 March 1942.
The scene is a small port/harbour that has been taken over by an undisclosed Commando Battalion who are, in conjunction with the Royal Navy, preparing for Operation Chariot, “The greatest raid of all time”, namely the Raid on the Normandy Dock, which took place on 28 March 1942.
(I mention that more for the benefit of your younger followers as I do not wish to insult the older farts like myself).
Further for the youngsters (haha), this was where an old destroyer (HMS Cambeltown) was stripped down to look like a German ship, packed with 4.5 tone of high explosive and accompanied by 18 smaller craft (wooden motor launches, a gunboat and an motor torpedo boat), set sail for the French Port at St Nazaire with a mind to ram the Normandie dock and put it out of action thereby preventing the Tirpitz from having a suitable dry dock for repairs.
(Without boring your readers with the detail, Jeremy Clarkson did a superb presentation of the raid on youtube)
Back to my layout… the challenge was finding a suitable backdrop to the little dock that I have built (and herein lies a challenge I have not been able to solve, but more on that later).
Being 1942 and in keeping with the rest of the layout, I wanted a throw-back on the Victorian era and thought that an old warehouse would do the job.
But nobody had a warehouse that fitted the period in question and I had to return to the internet of things to find photographs of what I was looking for.
And I was in luck. I found two suitable options – The one being a photo of the Metropolitan Wharf (I don’t have a clue as to where it is) and another of a completely different building, a nice, old, stone building (which I guess could have been a warehouse).
So I downloaded the photos, pulled them into Photoshop, got them scaled to the right dimensions for OO and then started modifying them in terms of length, etc to fit in with my little harbour.
Needless to say, being a complete novice at working with cardboard, it took a few attempts where the demolishing company situated down the road at Stonemill Hamlet (My closest town to “Bridgeport”
were the only winners.
Eventually,I managed to construct something that I was reasonably happy with (it still has some imperfections but these are relatively minor in the greater scheme of things).
The Photos show the finished product with a narrow platform out front.
There is still plenty to do on the scene such as:
Solving the water problem in my dock (hope you like my scratch built dock gates), finish the concrete ground works, placing the figures, building the 2 Bofors guns and sandbag emplacements, the hoists above the warehouse doors, finish making the torpedo’s, place my sailors from Langley Models and so on and so on and so on…
…you guys know the drill.
Now, because my warehouse also serves as the divider between two completely different scenes, I needed to do something on the other side and found a factory that I could modify, on Wordsworth Model Railway and here I must sing the praises of the author (Mike) for the fantastic work he has done. It is a site worth (excuse the pun) visiting for any English OO modeller.
Al, you provide a far greater service than I think you imagine in keeping this hobby alive for all, old and young.
I also extend a thank you to all those contributors out there who have given so freely of their knowledge and experience as the many tips help to keep this amazing hobby affordable for so many of us.
That’s all for now. Stay Safe….stay healthy and keep on trackin.
A huge thanks to Andrew – he’s been kind enough to supply me with the artwork he used to create his scene, so I will get it on the site as soon as possible.
I think it really does show in spades with a computer, bit of cardboard and glue you can create anything you want to.
Now on to Dana.
He’s used some of the prints and some imagination to help him with his wonderful harbour scene:
“My first ever Harbor/seaport site coming along with a lighthouse, sea captain house, 50+pine trees, (all my own designs – new ideas with a working lighthouse headlight), all my railroad layout scenes supported by my wife’s (Eileen’s) painted backgrounds…working on two sea vessels…stay tuned…a railroad wide short of our current D&E Model Railroad included…coming next…
A big thanks to Andrew and Dana.
It just goes to show if you have the textures, walls, roofs and doors, you are only limited by your imagination with the prints.
That’s all for today folks.
Please don’t forget today is the last day when you can grab the Beginner’s Guide for just $9.
You get 8 buildings bundled absolutely free with the Beginner’s Guide – of course I’m biased but they are a great way to get started with your layout and have some fun too.
But please don’t hang about – tomorrow the price goes back up to $27 and the buildings disappear.
PS Here’s John’s version of the free engine shed print that comes with the Beginner’s Guide.