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Wombat Creek Tramways

Wombat Creek is a H0 (1:87) scale model of a fictional town situated somewhere in the Victorian Goldfields, Australia.

The time is 1963. Geelong wins the VFL Championship against Hawthorn (109– 60). John F. Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas. ValentinaTeresjkova is the first woman in Space. The men behind The Great Train Robbery get £2.6 million from a Royal Mail train heading from Glasgow to London.

The town consists of several buildings. The “Wombat Creek Bank and Gold Exchange” is a prominent building in the town centre. You will also find several other commercial buildings; among them the daily newspaper“W.C. Chronicle”(colloquial known as the "Toilet Paper") and “Wombat Creek Brewing Company” (Famous for the “Wombat Bitter”). “The Big Nugget Gold Mine” is situated at the Western outskirts of town near the small Chinatown. The War Memorial is in a small park along East Street.

The town’s mayor Alfred Campbell together with his son David Campbell owns several businesses, including the bank, the pub and the newspaper. AC/DC basically run the town and make most decisions on behalf of the rest of Wombat Creek’s residents, who, on the other hand, are too busy with their own businesses.

The mayor’s latest initiative is Wombat Creek Tramways. Wombat Creek doesn’t really need a tram system, but AC reckons tramways will improve the town’s reputation. Partly because of limited funds the tramways' construction and rolling stock depend heavily on second-hand requirements from other Australian and overseas tramways.

Garden news from Wombat Creek

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Thu, February 06, 2020 18:00:40

During summer holidays quite a bit of work was done on the lay-out of Wombat Creek. Most of the ‘projects’ still needs the finishing touch, but the photo shows one being almost finished.

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Gum trees in Wombat Creek

The garden around the blue fibro house deliberately looks somewhat un-kept because the family has other interests. The newest addition to the garden are the two tall gum-trees. They are made from florist wire, ‘no-more-gaps’ filler, some paint and Woodland Scenic material. They came up all-right ever the canopy is a bit wide. The cubby house is made from gum-tree bark and a piece of corrugated iron (plastic). The bark has the right texture and colour, so no weathering was needed. The rope ladder hanging from the cubby house is a very thin slice of corflute panel. A dive into my wife’s sewing supplies gave me the materials for the hammock. To finish the scene I only need to find a person for the hammock and a child to climb up the ladder.

Thought is worse than reality

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Tue, January 28, 2020 17:19:21

Around six months a finished the two fibrohouses. Well, almost finished the green one. The roof over the entrance didn’t get its supports,which are set on angles. I considered that to bee too ‘tricky’, so the project ended up in the ‘too-hard-basket’. But the fact is – thought is worse than reality.

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Over the summer holidays I have done quite a bit around Wombat Creek and couldn’t no longer avoid the green fibrohouse. And of course – the job was done in about 30 minutes. A length of balsa wood, six pieces of green stem wire, super-glue and some Woodland Scenic for the flowers did the trick. It is a little difficult to photograph the house in situ, but I think it came out all right.

The Wombat Creek Tramways’ controller

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Fri, January 24, 2020 13:46:10

I haven’t done a proper drawing of the lay-out, as it stands at the moment. Since all tracks are down there is no real purpose for a drawing, so I’ll give you a photo of the control panel instead.

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Wombat Creek Tramways’ control panel

Obviously the black lines are the tracks. The reason for three tracks going right to the left edge is the tramways will eventually be extended depending on time and room. The necessary points and crossing are in storage.
The red push buttons control the points. Three points are still not connected and one points is unfortunately very unsteady.
The black push buttons control the power to the tram-stops. The tracks are under constant power and the trams will come to a stop, unless the black buttons are activated.
The slide switches are normally one, but they make it possible to stop a tram between stops.

Christmas in Wombat Creek

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Mon, December 23, 2019 17:08:03
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Wombat Creek Memorial Park

Everybody in Wombat Creek is busy getting ready for Christmas, but the council workers have managed to plant some mature bottle-brushes along the back of the Memorial Park.

A closer inspection reveals the shrubs are made from sisal rope, brown paint and Woodland Scenics foliage and flowers.

On behalf of all the people – young and old – in Wombat Creek: MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Diesel locomotive 56 and Scrubber no. 1

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Mon, December 02, 2019 18:19:08

Most tramways will have scrubber cars and Wombat Creek Tramways is no different. ‘Real’ tramways will convert old trams into scrubber cars but Wombat Creek has no surplus of old cars, so I came up with another solution – a diesel locomotive and a tank wagon. I know it is not a solution, you will find at an Australian tramway, but it will serve the purpose here in Wombat Creek. The tracks will be cleared of dust!

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Diesel locomotive and tank wagon before conversion

On a holiday in Austria some 40 years ago I bought the Kleinbahn locomotive. It has not had a lot of use being in storage most of the time. The wheels and gears had become stuck but a dose of WD40 made it running again. The number ’56’ comes from a small Victorian shunter, V56, with the same wheel configuration and an almost similar look. It was once used to shunt Metro trains through a washing complex. And yes, the gauge is not right! You may think the colours are the old VR livery, but it is not. They symbolise Wombat Creek with the blue being the ‘creek’ and the yellow being the gold.

The tanker is an old Jouef track cleaner. The decals on both the locomotive and scrubber are home-made and printed on an ink-jet printer. The first attempt didn’t do too good. I chose to print without a background colour (transparent) which made the decals very visible. The second attempt with a blue background is far better but not perfect. The colours could have been a bit brighter, but perhaps they have faded in the Aussie sun! Another ‘issue’ was the white print in ‘Scrubber no. 1’. Of course ‘white’ on a printer is ‘no ink’, so it turned up transparent. Well, that was sorted with white paint before the decals were attached.

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Diesel locomotive 56 and Scrubber No. 1

Wombat Creek Memorial Park

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Thu, November 07, 2019 17:47:25

It has been a while since I have posted on the progress of Wombat Creek Tramways. Holidays in Taiwan and work have taken up time, but some construction has taken place.

A new bandstand – or rotunda – has been erected next to the Memorial. It is modelled after the local bandstand. It is not exact copy. E.g. the railings are different. In fact they are made from left-overs from the Heljan Brewery kit.

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The bandstand in Wombat Creek Memorial Park

At the moment concrete footpaths, nicely moved lawns and garden beds with mulch (made from used the content of used teabags) make up the parkland around the bandstand. Later I will plant some bushes, shrubs and trees and perhaps place a few benches. Interestingly you will hardly ever find people using a bandstand, so I may consider not populating the area.

After completing the bandstand only one major feature is missing from this part of Wombat Creek (I will eventually draw a detailed track plan) – a water tower next to the tram barn. Why the tram barn in Elwood had a very prominent water tower is a bit of a mystery to me. Perhaps it served a nearby powerhouse. I will enquire at Melbourne Tram Museum.

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The original bandstand

It’s a six, but…

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Fri, September 13, 2019 18:03:56

The kids in the blue house have been playing a bit of ‘backyard’ cricket. It is hard to figure out how they could bounce a ball and run in the long grass, but they did. In fact one of the kids batted for a six. The ball went over the back fence and – by closer inspection – through one of the windows (second from the right) in the tram barn. No wonder they all have done a runner and left the stumps and bat behind.

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Backyard cricket going wrong

Lunch time

Text & photos from the layout Posted on Tue, September 10, 2019 18:25:35

All trams are out and running and it is time for the an employee at the tram barn to enjoy his lunch. A close up on the newspaper reveals it must be early October 1963. The front page informs the readers, Geelong has won the VFL Grand Final.

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Lunch time at Wombat Creek Tramways

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