December 21, 2009


M-D consist, common on suburban branches and on lighter patronaged lines during off-peak
M-T-D consist, as used on lighter graded lines

M-D-T-M consist, a standard 4 car set for lighter patronaged lines and off peak services

M-M consist which seems to have been used as a "locomotive" primarily for train haulage like those below

M-M consist providing an "E train" service, in this case with a short G-B-C consist for an outer suburban or country destination beyond the wires

M-M consist providing goods haulage capability

December 20, 2009

Mr Clapp would be happy.

Some further detail behind the Up platform - The VR made significant advertising revenue from billboards such as these during this era, and the posters I have used are from the period - including the opportunity to "Fly with Ulm" referring to flights by Sir Charles Kingsford Smith's co-pilot.

November 25, 2009

Wal Larsen

I was deeply saddened recently to hear of Wal Larsen's passing. Wal was one of the stalwarts amongst Victorian Railways early enthusiasts. He was also a faithful and devoted Christian. While I had known for some time Wal was not well, this was a sad moment, not sad for him because I know he is with the God he worshipped throughout his life, but sad for us to have lost such a generous link with the past.

I never met Wal however I contacted Wal many years ago seeking information about the Cudgewa line. He was happy to take the call of a stranger and generously help how he could. He had'nt visited the area much but that did'nt stop him forwarding me a couple of pages of recollections he had accumulated over the years.

I tried to contact him again more recently regarding liveries. His son kindly apologised noting he was'nt well enough to help. I knew it must have been serious to stop such a spirit from helping.

Wal lives on for enthusiasts through the books and articles he published, none more so for me than his "Change Here For", perhaps the seminal work on how the Victorian Railways was to an enthusiast in the late 1930's and 1940's. His recollections make the era alive, and have been greatly influential in my choosing the early era for my modelling. The book is redolent with interest, character and flavour of the times.

In honour of Wal I assembled this short train and gave it a few laps around the layout in the down direction, heading out of town. It is typical of the kind of trains he enjoyed and described so well. From his book:

"Branch line travel in the days of steam was a wonderful way of life for the travelling rail fan.

One was never in a hurry and could relax at his window seat in the inevitable ancient carriage that, having outlived it's declining years on a slow and easy once-a-week branch line.

The fan would not just have the compartment to himself, he would often have the whole carriage...

...The train rumbled through the rural scene......The carriage would gently sway along, creaking at times....There would be the smell of smoke drifting back from the engine mingled with the never-to-be-forgotten odor of hot sun on the leather seats......"

(Excerpts from p. 39,40 - "Change Here For")

Rest well Wal, I look forward to meeting you one day.

October 13, 2009

Protection from the elements.

The temporary (well, 50 odd years....) protection for passengers exiting the South side of Glenferrie and Auburn station has been built for Glenburn per the VR's plans.

October 6, 2009

The Wall & Thank You Ada

Have commenced work on the Up (South) side of Glenburn station. Knowing that the Box Hill line would one day be tripled, VR kept this side of both Glenferrie and Auburn stations in this state from their building until the triplication. I have'nt found too many pictures that clearly show this side, however it is clear from plans such as that below what the layout was. This overall look will be replicated on Glenburn.

Non-existence of photographic record is a fact of life for modelling this era, however some sources do exist. In 1934 a gifted Melbourne artist placed her easel down, probably in the original (now) Swinburne University building and painted the following brilliant composition which is an excellent source of both detail and colour (Note that the scenery to be emplaced will cover up much of the base of the Dn end of the foundation wall).

(Courtesy & Copyright State Library of Victoria)

Sincere thanks to the late Ada May Plante.

September 28, 2009

September 6, 2009

At the rail side

Catenary masts sufficiently in place, I can now continue building the inside (rail side) of Glenburn station. These pictures show the work in progress along the platform with surfacing, ramp fencing and parcels and waiting rooms added recently.

July 27, 2009

Toward the spark

Electrification has commenced - I have been able to assemble a semblance of the characteristic VR catenary masts from a variety of sources including Sommerfeldt masts, ex-rail girders and various other pieces. Also included is the High Tension (HT) extensions added from 1925 to provide back up main power carriage, themselves characteristic of the eastern line through Auburn and Glenferrie. Thanks are due to Ian Weickhardt for helpful advice generously given.

June 14, 2009

Overdue fun!

The basic main line now being emplaced per the layout plan above, time to run some trains!

March 15, 2009

On track...sort of....

Track having just arrived, scenery work will take a break while I lay some track around the room.

February 15, 2009

A roll in the grass....

Have grassed the embankment on the Up side of Glenburn with a combination of Silflor and Woodland Scenics materials.

February 10, 2009


Wiring up on Glenburn Rd completes initial work on this section.

February 3, 2009

Even more details....

PECO's 4mm 1926 Thornycroft is slightly overscale for Glenburn, however will be placed at the front of the layout thereby forcing perspective.

A typical VR advertising hoarding of the era, the Yates add dates from 1930.