Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Progress At last!

2013 has been a year of major changes in the basement.  We made the decision to remove the oil furnace, oil barrel, and associate pipes for the hot-water heating system, and replace it all with a heat pump.  The change took quite a while, and made it necessary to remove all of the railway that was located in the furnace room (west-end staging tracks, the main line between Wakefield and Pembroke, and the town of Northampton).  I then studded, insulated, and gyprocked the outside wall of the former furnace room.  Finally, I was able to begin rebuilding the railway.  Northampton is now back in place, the new West Avondale Yard (west-end staging) has been installed, and the mainline is open once again.

The photo shows the new west-end staging yard, comprised of nine tracks.  Four of the tracks are long enough to hold 36-car trains.  The nine-track yard is a big improvement over the old staging yard with only five tracks, the longest of which had room for an 18-car train.  All three east-bound passenger trains can now enter the layout from staging--one of them previously originated in the Avondale coach yard.

(Click on the photo below to see the full width of the expanded staging yard)

The east-end staging will also be enlarged, an entirely new industrial area will be added west of Avondale (above Northampton in the furnace room), and a few new industries will be added in Lower Wakefield.

2014 looks like a good year for operations on the Carleton Railway.