Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Welcome to the next stage of my Australian Free-moN based layout, Nowa Nowa.

As the Nowa Nowa module nears completion, we have been thinking about the next stages of the layout.

We will be building a few scenic modules, including two 90 degree corners to provide a 180 degree turn around, however we needed to decide on the next major station to help tie it all together.

There were three options under consideration:

1. "Old Sale". The old Sale Station was a dead end station where all trains entered the station, then the locomotives had to run around the train before heading east to Bairnsdale/Nowa Nowa/Orbost or West to Traralgon/Melbourne. It was reasonably compact and would have provided a lot of operations in a small space as the trains would have had a lot of movements. However the linkage to Nowa Nowa was poor as historically the freights from Orbost/Nowa Nowa/Bairnsdale generally took the Maffra line and did not go through Sale. It also didn't fit well into a space in my shed, or at model railway exhibitions.

Sale Looking south - Western Langford Photo
Sale 1979 Steve Cullen Photo

2. Traralgon. Traralgon was another option. It was the end of the electrification from Melbourne which meant that most trains changed locomotives. It had a turntable and roundhouse and was reasonably compact. However fitting the turntable and round house in would make the modules quite deep, there are no suitable mechanisms for the "L" class locomotives, although the train density was considerably higher than Sale or Bairnsdale.
Traralgon Loco - Steve Cullen

Traralgon 1964 L class Loco heading west Western Langford

3. Bairnsdale. Bairnsdale was the next major station west of Nowa Nowa towards Melbourne. It was the terminus of the twice daily "The Gippslander" passenger train, and featured a fairly busy compact yard. At times three trains would be in the yard (The Gippslander and the crossing of freights to and from Orbost). As a kid I used to drive by the station on my way to and from school gazing at the T's and the Y's. Some quick designs indicated it could fit in 3.2-3.6m of length. The total layout would be 6x3m in a U shape.
Bairnsdale 1975 Peter Vincent
East from Footbridge 1996 Peter Vincent

West from Footbridge 1996 Peter Vincent

With a bit of sketching in Corel Draw we were able to come up with the following concept for it fitting into the shed. Green is already completed modules 

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