Thursday 19 May 2022

Rosehill Model Railway Exhibition 2022 - Part 2

Continuing on from the first instalment about last weekend's Rosehill Model Railway Exhibition, let me continue with some more layouts that grabbed my attention. I'll then finish up with some concluding comments.

A new layout (for me at least) was the HO scale Sydney suburban Carlingford branch terminus railway station. The layout depicts the terminus from the late 1980s to early 1990s. On the prototype, the Carlingford line was a relatively short suburban line (7km) forking off from Clyde on the Sydney Western line. The Carlingford line north of Parramatta Road was closed on 5 January 2020 to allow conversion works to light rail to take place. This also involved the closure of Rosehill station and rail access to Rosehill Racecourse where the exhibition was held. The layout showcased a range of suburban electric sets, including the brightly coloured "Zoo train".

Cockle Creek (N scale) was another NSW-themed layout featuring a range of locomotives and rollingstock from the 1960-1980s. The prototype is situated on the Short North between Sydney and Newcastle. The layout is from the NSW N scale group.

Dungog (HO scale) made another exhibition appearance and continues to display some of the best modelling of the NSW prototype. Dungog is on the Main North Coast Railway line to Brisbane. You can see a wide range of prototypes on the layout as it showcases action from the 1940s to 1970s. I always take time to look at the station and yard infrastructure on this layout as they are of excellent quality. And, of course, one cannot enjoy Dungog without taking note of the iconic layout lighting.

Wingello (HO scale) was another NSW-themed layout being based on the prototype station on the Main South line in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, 132km from Sydney Central. The layout is from the Georges River Model Railway Club. The layout features a range of trains from the 1960s through to the 1990s. This was a nicely detailed layout with some excellent scratchbuilt structures.

Gunning (N scale) made another appearance, folowing on from Canberra last month. Gunning is a small town on the Main South line and is a popular spot for railway photographers. The layout incorporates the railway station and infrastructure of Gunning, as well as some additional railway structures to the north and south of Gunning itself. 

Also on the Main South line, north of Gunning, is the major regional town of Goulburn. The Guildford Model Railway Club's exhibition layout of Goulburn (HO scale) is a great representation of the station and yard infrastructure. You can always be assured of plenty of railway action on this layout.


Another favourite on the exhibition circuit is Waterfall (HO scale) from the Illawarra Model Railway Association. The prototype location of Waterfall is 38km south of Sydney Central on the Illawarra line. The period showcased by this layout is the 1960s, well before electification in 1980. All of the buildings and structures are scratchbuilt. Track is Peco Code 83. Operation can be either DC or DCC.

Turning now to some overseas prototypes, we start off with the HO scale US-themed layout, Springfield Junction from the Hills Model Railway Club. This layout has many industries and plenty of railroad action. Operation is with digital command control (DCC).

Erbschaft (HO scale) was a wonderful layout from Ross James and son, particularly given that much of  the buildings, locos and rolling stock came from Ross's father's collection from the 1960s and 1970s. The layout depicts a fictitious West German town in the 1960s. The layout uses the centre-stud Marklin track and locomotives. The buildings are early Faller and Kibri. None look the worse for wear! I spent quite some time enjoying this layout and all it had to offer. A very well composed layout indeed.


Another German layout was Luneberg from the Marklin Modellers Sydney club. The layout features the medieval town of Luneberg in northern Germany. This layout had some very nice buildings, as well as showcasing a variety of trains from Era III to the latest high-speed trains. The layout also uses the Faller car system and the town was well serviced by regular buses.

I'll finish up with another of my favourites from the exhibition: Uley Junction (O scale). The layout is based on a fictitious location but following Great Western Railway (GWR) practices. Being a branch line terminus, there are a number of short trains coming and going, as well as plenty of shunting. The layout showcases two periods of operation - late 1800s-early 1900s, and the 1930s. As such, there is a very interesting array of trains that you can see on this layout throughout the day. The layout uses a turntable fiddle yard (which is pretty big!), being able to hold and turn a train of 1200mm in length.


As well as a great and varied selection of layouts on show at the exhibition, there was also a wide range of commercial vendors as well. These included, ARHS bookshop, Alco World Trains, AndIan Models, Auscision, Bergs Hobbies, Burfitt Tools, Casula Hobbies, Eureka, Euro Hobby, Forest Miniatures, Hobbyland Hornsby, IDR, Ixion, Kerroby Models, Model Railroad Craftsman, Pallas Hobbies, SCMRS, SDS, and Wombat Models. Apologies if I left anybody out. And I cannot forget to mention the exhibition's second-hand stall which is synonomous with the event.

The Epping Model Railway Club is to be congratulated for a first rate exhibition with plenty of layouts and commercial stands to make the day (or weekend) a truly engaging experience. Thanks, fellas!

Monday 16 May 2022

The 2022 Rosehill Model Railway Exhibition

Congratulations to the Epping Model Railway Club for an absolutely fantastic model railway exhibition at Rosehill racecourse. After two false starts in 2020 and 2021 because of Covid-19, it was great to have this exhibition back in business as it is truly one of the best in the country.

This exhibition was a two day affair instead of the usual three day exhibition. Talking to exhibitors, they were pretty happy with a two day event. I don't know what the patronage was over the weekend, but on Saturday when I attended it was pretty busy, both inside the second hand section and the the exhibition proper. The venue (and the sunny weather) was excellent with good lighting, plenty of aisle space and a great range of layouts and commercial stands.

I had pre-booked and entry mid-morning Saturday was easy. The $20 entry fee, at first glance, seemed a bit high but everything seems to be expensive at the moment. That said, when I consider I was there for about five hours, enjoyed the layouts and catching up with people, then a $20 entry fee was good value.

Before I go any further, let's see a sample of some of the layouts on show.

First up is Yendys (HO scale) from the ACT Model Railway Society. As you can see from the exhibition plaques in the second photo below, this layout has done a lot of shows. It is a very good layout and always worth a good look. As always, click on the image to expand. 

Next up was the Peterborough Line, an interesting layout with separate vignettes showing the Light River bridge (photos) and Tarlee. The layout is HO scale and set in the 1982-86 era when Australian National trains plied the rails. I look forward to seeing further developments on this layout in the future.

The popular Binalong layout (HO scale) from the Epping Model Railway Club made another exhibition appearance. This layout is always a pleasure to view.

Widgeree (N scale) was a new layout to me and one that packs a lot of model railway into a scene. The layout is from the Sydney N Scale Model Railway Club. The layout is based on a small country town in the goldfields region of Victoria on the Castlemaine to Maryborough line in the early 1980s. The layout showcases a wide range of locos and rolling stock from club members.

The Canadian-themed Cheakamus Canyon in HO scale was an amazing layout set in the mountains of British Columbia. The layout features a number of bridge scenes, all based on real locations. The scenery was built using plaster castings on a foam base. The enormity of the scenic areas really place the trains in context. The layout was featured in the December 2021 issue of Continental Modeller. This layout is one to look out for at future exhibitions.

One of the highlights was the HO scale layout Burrowa. This layout is now 30' long (just over 9 metres) and well-scenicked using static grass and various coloured fibres. The slow pace of this branch line replicates the prototype nicely. The layout modules are are constructed using aluminium frames with plywood and foam superstructure. The station and associated buildings were all scratchbuilt, save for the S008 grain silos. The control panel uses the DCC Concepts Alpha Central for switching the points. I really love this layout and enjoyed talking to Peter, the owner/builder, about its construction.



In contrast by size, my other favourite layout was the wonderful Cass layout (HO scale) set in the mountains of West Virginia, USA, located a "ways up" the Chesapeake & Ohio Greenbrier Division. This layout was new to me. The layout featured shay lumber workings of the Cass, and then later, Mower Lumber companies. Note in the photos below the wonderful shay (brass) and how the right side of the layout extends back deep to give the layout a strong sense of depth but within a relatively small amount of space. The layout was constructed dusing Qubelok aluminium and foam core board which makes this layout light and easy to transport. This layout was superb.

Another layout I saw for the first time was the Queensland Railways HOn31/2 Walloon from the Logan District Model Railway Club. The layout is set in the 1960-80 period with a good variety of locos and rolling stock. In particular, the station buildings and the church were very nicely made and contributed to the realism of the associated scenery.


Another layout I was very impressed with was Over the Fence (NSW, HO scale). This layout is loosely modelled on Adamstown (including the station). The layout features some wonderful suburban houses and cameo scenes which we've come to expect from the layout builders in the now familiar perspex display mode. The railway line literally passes these houses "over the fence". All the buildings and structures were scratchbuilt using styrene. The different houses and rooflines are exceptional.

Stay tuned for the second instalment later in the week for the completion of the exhibition report and associated layout photos. But once again, thanks to the Epping MRC for an exceptional day.