HO Ballast

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PeterLJ
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HO Ballast

Post by PeterLJ » Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:47 am

Hi

I was wondering if we have a recommendation for the type of ballast to be used on our HO NMRA BR Spec boards.

Thanks

Peter L-J

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BrianMoore
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by BrianMoore » Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:47 am

On all of the Western Union modules so far, there's been the same mix of ballast on everything. So, despite there being different colours and types of scenery being connected up to each other, the effect is far less jarring due to the consistency of the ballast colour, which remains constant.
Brian Moore

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warbonnetuk
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by warbonnetuk » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:21 am

Still it would be good to have a rough guide on the shade to be used. From memory RS Tower use a light grey (Woodland Scenics) ballast where as, after some experimenting, we at Seaboard Southern have opted for a granite ballast that comes out a mid / dark grey once glued down. I did a test piece of track as part of the evaluation process and to my eyes there was a noticable difference but that was with no other visual distractions to lessen the impact.

Guess the acid test is that from the initial module linkups that have taken place how did it look? Maybe just need a ban on Pink Lady quartz ballast :D

Dan
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PeterLJ
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by PeterLJ » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:48 am

BrianMoore wrote:On all of the Western Union modules so far, there's been the same mix of ballast on everything.
Hi Brian

Yes, we had buckets of the stuff, however all gone now!

Peter L-J

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Gloriousnse
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by Gloriousnse » Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:51 am

Ballast can be lots of colours anyhow, so it doesn't bother me loads if there are some differences.

I really like the colour of the 'salt & pepper' mix that WU have used, but it looks quite coarse to my eye compared to the one we use.
Martyn Read

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BrianMoore
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by BrianMoore » Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:15 am

Gloriousnse wrote:Ballast can be lots of colours anyhow, so it doesn't bother me loads if there are some differences.

I really like the colour of the 'salt & pepper' mix that WU have used, but it looks quite coarse to my eye compared to the one we use.
The old adage of using N-scale ballast for HO rings true, as it does provide (to my eye) a more realistically-sized "nugget".
Brian Moore

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torikoos
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by torikoos » Tue Feb 12, 2013 5:27 pm

Indeed, mixing is fine, although I would have preferred if I could have at least 'colour matched' the WU modules with ballast, I do find it a bit coarse.
I've taken matters a step further, the ballast I use on my module (See separate thread) is Z scale ballast, of a brownish mix colour. On my home layout I have a mix of various shades of Woodland Scenics fine ballast (probably N scale), and I use a grey Vivarium substrate for another section that depicts new ballast. This Vivarium substrate has a near similar texture to the Woodland scenics ballast, but is dirt cheap in comparison.
Did the WU use aquarium 'sand' by any chance? That's how it appeared to me.

Koos
Koos Fockens -Devon UK. North American Model Railroading
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Mike_R
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Re: HO Ballast

Post by Mike_R » Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:39 pm

I don't know about the others, but I use sieved B&Q sharp sand. A £2, 25Kg bag gives about 6Kg of ballast, a load of sand I use for sub-roadbed and yards and several Kg of small and large rocks, about 18", good for talus. The ballast comes out around 2" to 3" with the sieve and two tea strainers I use. The sand is a bit light in colour, a wash will darken it. It does take a couple of weeks of 1/2 hour an evening to sieve a 25Kg bag, but it is really cheap.
Mike Ruby

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