Friday, January 1, 2010


Getting the trackwork on the Coke Works Branch back up and running has inevitably led to getting back to work on the coke works itself.    The space that I am working with is pretty tight, ideally I'd like to have 4x16' to properly model a coke works - I have more like 2x4' .  It is at the end of the layout so the premise is, of course, that you are only seeing part of the actual plant.   
Part 1 was posted a long time ago and I'm not sure what description I gave of things at that point.  Basically, I have two main tracks going into the works - one for coke out and the other for coal in, with a very short spur to load by-products.    One thing that is a bit different from my usual faire, is that many of the structures in the coke works were kits or kitbashed structures.  Starting at the layout edge is a slightly modified Walther's New River Mining Structure - this is the coal receiving and prep buildings - it hides the edge of the layout and also covers where the two track main enters the backdrop.  This structure is meant to represent the center of the plant.  Also from this kit I used the separate hopper structure as a coke loader, raising it a bit and adding some walkways and stairs.   The coke is received here by conveyor, from an coke wharf and prep building not modeled  (past the end of the layout).   The next structure is a Walther's Gas Retort kit - the actual coke works kits had not been rereleased when I started working on this facility so I used what was available.  It only has a small number of actual coke ovens, but again, the idea is that there are many more on the other side of the plant.  This kit was built straight out of the box, but I will be adding rails and catenary to the top of the oven as well as the discharge platform side.  Because of space, the pusher side of the ovens is completely unmodeled.  I would have loved to model a pusher but this machine's traverse takes up a lot of real estate, of which I had none to spare.    I also have laid track in front of the ovens for the quench car and locomotive (both these were scratchbuilt and their construction described in earlier blogs).  This track extends to the edge of the layout where it enters a to be built quench tower (scratch) .  Not having the space to model the actual coke wharf (where the coke is dumped from the quencher), I've given the impression that it is on the other side of the plant.    Following the actual ovens I had intended to have the Walther's Gas Holder - this is an excellent kit, but it just barely fit between the tracks, not looking very prototypical, and it took up too much space,  that I decided could be better put to use as part of the by-products plant.   I still want to use this model but the only place close by would put it a dozen yards from the pig-caster, again, not very prototypical.   It might end up on the part of the layout yet to be built.   So basically without the gasholder, the remaining area between the ovens and where the track comes to a point will be the by-products plant.  One of the buildings in this area, the gas exhauster/ammonium sulphate building will be represented by a Walther's Vulcan Manufacturing structure - pretty much by the book except for closing in a few windows where piping will enter.   The remainder of the by-products plant will be mostly scratchbuilt.   Unfortunately, I again run short of space and I believe I will have to represent the benzol plant off-layout.   In the immediate future I intend to concentrate on some of the by-product structures and also the charging car and the door opening car - all will be in their own blog series ByProduct Plant,...etc.     When I start putting it all together and painting structures I will come back to this series.

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