Perhaps it’s a little early for a ‘lessons learnt’ for Kuritu, but this seems a good time to reflect, as I haven’t got all that much done this week. We took the opportunity to go bluebell hunting, finding a fine display in Hatchlands Park on a sunny afternoon.
But back to trains! I am still cleaning and fettling the track after ballasting to get smooth running (almost there), then I can add catenary and the lighting rig. I’ve a busy, almost pre-covid, week ahead, but hope to get something done. As for fettling the track, I was most impressed that my Union Mills T9 4-4-0 would happily go around the 6″ curves on Kuritu. Well, I had to use something to test it all with……
So what have I learnt?
- Don’t be afraid to take a break from another project. Actually, I’ve got too many unfinished projects lying about, but Kuritu has been a breath of fresh air, that I have really enjoyed. I’m looking forward to getting back to Minories in a week or two, and the break has done me good.
- Small is most definitely beautiful. On several levels! A small layout can show rapid progress and encourages more to get done. It’s interesting that both my lockdown layouts have been cut down versions of larger models. And I’m getting older – small, light, baseboards are definitely the best for solo working.
- It’s been fun renovating another layout. I really liked the original Kuritu, and though the new version doesn’t really resemble it (although the track layout is very similar, but smaller), salvaging the buildings and figures and vehicles has enabled me to keep some of the character of the original line.
- I do enjoy having a continuous run, to sit and watch the trains go by.
- Sometimes, Rule 1 is fun. It’s been very freeing not to have to worry about the detail of what I am building. No rivet counting, as long as it is vaguely Japanese. This isn’t a criticism of accurate and detailed modelling, but sometimes it’s good just not to worry!
- On a practical note, I think that I’ve improved some of my scenic techniques, but have decided that I need to try static grass next time around.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to post some final pictures of the layout before long. Then back to Minories, although I have to prepare a presentation on my switching layout for the NGF virtual exhibition by the end of the month.
Perhaps the really exciting news for the week is that we have positively started to plan restarting ESNG club nights. We can meet indoors in sixes from 17 May, so club nights will kick off again – in a covid-safe manner – from 19 May. I can’t guarantee that we won’t have to shut down again, but it will be great to meet up again face to face.
And finally, an interesting modelling point. I think that my N-gauge ballast looks awful, bitty and bumpy, but the ballast in this pre-Southern view of Ventor, IOW, is a complete mess. Lumps everywhere, and bits lying on the sleepers. Even I can do better than this.