Ballasting up to a Trestle or Bridge

As I am now nearing the end of my module build I am concentrating on some of the details that make my modules realistic.  I have already shared with you how I ballast my track and you can read about it here.  In this post I will share with you how I ballast my track up to trestle ends where the ground suddenly drops away.

In the model world the ballast is glued down so there is no problem placing ballast right on the edge of a drop as the glue will hold it in place but in the real world wind, rain run off, train vibration and general movement will cause the ballast to fall of the edge creating a weak spot in the trackage.  Where the ground gently slopes away, as in the image below, this is less of an issue as the ballast will simply form a shoulder; as it does on the sides of the track.

Baslisting at edges 1

However areas where land drops of steeply or as in my case vertically the ballast needs to be contained.  There are all sorts of ways to do this from using concrete to earth banks but as my trestle is made from timber it would make sense that the containing barrier would be made from timber as well.  As you can see in the picture below I have created a C shape where the trestle starts.

Baslisting at edges 2

There would be no timber between the rails because the bridge ties will provide the required barrier.  I have repeated this at all the trestle ends where the land drops away as you can see in the images below.

Baslisting at edges 6 Baslisting at edges 3 Baslisting at edges 4 Baslisting at edges 5

The timber has simply been glued to the scenery using white glue.  Once the glue had dried it was time to add the ballast and using the same techniques as before I ballasted up to all the barriers.

Baslisting at edges 7 Baslisting at edges 8 Baslisting at edges 9 Baslisting at edges 10 Baslisting at edges 11

With the trestle end meeting the land on a gradual slope the ballast simply runs into a shoulder as you can see below.  The end of the trestle is founded on a timber frame full of rock and ballast that has been cut into the bank.

Baslisting at edges 12 Baslisting at edges 13

The overall effect is a well ballasted track section with clean bridge track.

Baslisting at edges 14

The final stage to complete the trestles will be to add the check rails and safe refuges which I will cover in a later post.