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"Somerton" was a classic exhibition layout, a sceniced front and unsceniced rear staging yards. It protrayed a real location on the mainline between Melbourne & Sydney. It was in reality a quiet location with nothing major near it - a goods siding out in the paddocks. The only structure of note was the signal box and the signals - with the layout had as well.

This the railway was suited for through running, with thre train ont he viewers side at once, and being prototypical. Limited shunts and switching was possible.

The railway featured a lever frame built by Tony Kouciba, and a standard gauge panel by Tony Gatt. It had TK built signals as well as the circuitry to operate them. Kevin Sangston built the operating level crossing gates and did alot of the track detection. Andrew Mierisch made operating gates for a industry as well as asssiting in all the wiring, and installing the electo-magnetic uncouplers.

The layout was stored as life's committments took over for the group. We recently made time and decided to scrap the old layout in favor of building something new. This was no quick decison, and we knew there was alot of stuff we can reuse. Whatever we could preserve has been done.

The first showing of the layout was at the 1991 Bendigo Easter Exhibition, the last was the 1996 Waverly Show.

The layout was stored in it's own carry case.

Click here to see some pictures of the old layout....

Somerton at a glance

  • Name of Railroad: Somerton.
  • Scale: HO (1:87)
  • Size of Layout: 20ft x 14ft. There were eight 7ft x 3 ft modules.
  • Prototype: Somerton, on the outskirts of Melbourne, along the North East Mainline.
  • Period/era: Modern back untill 1980's.
  • Layout Style: Triple track (two broadgauge, one standards gauge), continuous track. Sceniced on the front, staging yards on the rear.

    NOTE: all track is HO , the "broad" and "standard" are logical, not physical.
  • Layout Height: About 1 Meter.
  • Benchwork:Semi Open Grid.
  • Roadbed: 12mm Ply.
  • Track: Commercial code 100 track, commercial and a handlayed code 100 points.
  • Length of mainline run: about 50ft all the way round
  • Turnout(Point) minimum: no 4.
  • Minimum curve radii: 24 inches.
  • Maximum grade: none
  • Scenery construction: plaster reinfored with wire& cloth where needed.
  • Control:Pure DC with manual control. Seperate signalling system.
  • Started: June 1990
  • Last operated: Perhaps 1996
  • Dismantled: May 2003

Page written & maintained by David Head.