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Ansbach Branch

An HO scale layout based on a German prototype
[HO [1:87] scale = 3.5mm/ft models running on 16.5mm gauge track]
Dave Edgell is the Layout Coordinator

As our Branch did not have a layout based on a European prototype, the layout’s original owner, the late Bill Pidgeon, offered to donate this layout to our Branch and the offer was accepted.

The Ansbach branch is set somewhere in Saxe–Coburg and some time in the first decade of the Twentieth century. Little is known of the early history of the line although legend has it that it was sometimes used by Prince Albert in his youth. The place was chosen as it was an area where both Bavarian and Prussian locomotives could be seen together and the time was chosen in order to fit in with the Landerbahn rolling stock available.

The aim of the layout is to fit both a branch line and a continuous double track main line into an area of approximately eleven feet square in order to accommodate a desire for main line signalling as well as a basic branch line safe working system with a reasonable amount of shunting.

The rolling stock is almost exclusively Fleischmann. The track is predominantly Peco with large radius curved points on the main line. A very sharp curved Fleischmann point gives access to a logging siding off the branch line which by reason of its tight curves [0.5m radius] is normally worked by tank engines. Peco three–way electro-frog points are used in the Ansbach yard, one at each end of the station. Two large radius curved points, have been installed at Ansbach giving three through lines togeth­er with a long ladestraBe and a timber load­ing siding,

The main line travels through Oberbaumbach and leads to hidden sidings on the lower level. The branch line leaves from this station, which has a loco shed to stable the branch engines.

The main line is operated on the German system of signalling whereas the branch is by train orders as set out in the working timetable. When more than one train is on the branch the timetable indicates which trains stop at the bedarf halt trapezium boards that are situated at Ansbach and Oberbaumbach.

A full description of this layout can be found on page 480 of Continental Modeller magazine’s November 1996 issue.

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