Friday 16 June 2023


 In November 2011 I started laying track. The first area I attempted was the upper level which will become Bomaderry and Yard. I placed a temporary Platform f to represent the Station and placed a Southern Rails Goods Shed prior to laying the track.

Upper Level showing placement of Buildings and trackwork - 2011-11-05.

View showing Trains on the upper layout - 2011-11-05.

Close-up of the Goods Shed area - 2011-11-05.

Goods Shed - 2011-11-05.

Wednesday 3 August 2022


I have finally got back to updating this blog. The changes are:

  • I have decided to change the name of my layout from Parwon Model Railway to Illawest Model Railway
  • therefore the title of this blog is now ILLAWEST MODEL RAILWAY
  • I have also updated the logo at the bottom of the page
  • the Layout Diagram has now also been updated with the addition of ACDEP Carriage Shed. This is an area to store, maintain country passenger coaches etc., this is an adaption of ACDEP at Redfern in Sydney. This was originally built to house and maintain the Southern Aurora when it was introduced to NSW and Victoria.
I will attempt to be a little more proactive with this blog in the future.

Tuesday 12 May 2020


Once benches were complete it was time to start the acual adventure of building my very first Model Roaliway.
I put down some test track and had my first train on the layout.

                                                        First Laid Track - 18-09-2011                                                     

                                               First Train on Layout - 18-09-2011

                                                 Close Up of Train - 18-09-2011

Saturday 25 April 2020


Trackwork layout started as sketches and finally designed in AutoCAD.

  Final Layout as it is today - 2022-08-03. Drawn in AutoCAD.

Details of Layout:
  • Red Track is the Down Track
  • Green Track is the Up Track
  • Black Tracks are Sidings, Yards etc
Using AutoCAD enabled me to draw the layout closely to scale with a few modifications required as I constructed the layout.
The overall appearance is courtesy of a friend in Sydney, Jim Hughes, who had a similar shaped layout to this while the actual design differs to show my tastes.
I have incorporated my version of Bomaderry (Nowra), this is where my love of trains commenced as mentioned earlier. This is the area at the front of the layout on a higher level.
To the left is a representation of Penrith. Track layout is very similar to the immediate station limits of Penrith, however, actual buildings at this point in time are generic. There is a Locomotive Depot called Delec to the right of Penrith and an Electric Train Depot near to back of the Train Room called Punchbowl with Clydeburn Station and Yard in front of this.
To the right at the back is a generic Station and in the middle is a Container Terminal.
I guess I have made the rookie Model Railway modeller mistake of trying to fit as much track as possible, oh well, I like what I have.
If I had my time over, I would do things a whole lot different.


The layout was designed using sketches and AutoCAD to draw up the final layout.
Requirements considered were:
  • stations and their locations
  • yards and yard working
  • train storage, i.e. yards, sidings and sheds
  • passing loops
  • reversing capabilities
  • landscaping
  • techniquies
 The first consideration was track layout. So, what bench work could I fit that allows for maximum layout as well as being able to view and move about the shed. To be honest, the general bench layout has come courtesy of a fellow modeller in Sydney. Que do's to Jim.

So, first consideration was height of benchwork. After careful consideration and viewing many layouts both private and exhibition and determined that a height somewhere between 1100mm to 1200mm high. Therefore my layout ended up being a height of 1165mm.
I used 75mm x 35mm pine framing timber (which I have realised is way overkill - the Shed will blow away before the benches).
On top of the framing I attached 3000mm x 915mm x 15mm MDF paneling.

                                                    Bench Framing. 18-09-2011

                                         Benchwork with top attached. 18-09-2011

                                               Overall Benchwork. 16-10-2011

                               Benchwork showing where Bomaderry will be. 05-11-2011


In June 2011, I decided to build a Shed for my model railway layout. It was decided to purchase a metal framed and metal clad shed from Titan Garages.

The size of the shed is 6.0m x 5.5m x 2.4m. The Shed was traditional metal framed (similar to timber framing) so that I could insulate and line with gyprock. This increased the cost but in the end made for a better shed to be able to place the insulation, run electrical wiring and install the gyprock.
The concrete slab was an interesting exercise in that during the curing process the rear right corner took nearly  12 hours to go off and start to dry. We were out there keeping an eye on it well into the night.
                                                  Concrete Slab. 01-06-2011

The Shed took only a few days to be installed. Time for me to do my bit. Install insulation, gyprock and finally carpet.

                                                          Framing. 25-06-2011
                                                      Internal View. 13-08-2011

The completed shed.

                                                                        The Shed.

 Now time to start the design of the layout and commence construction.

Friday 24 April 2020


My father was in the Navy when I was born and based at HMAS Albatross, Nowra, N.S.W., Australia.
As I grew up I became familiar with Bomaderry (Nowra) Railway Station and it was here that my love of trains commenced. Today I can close my eyes and still hear the noises of the Steam Locomotives and the smell of the smoke being readied in the morning prior to working the morning Mail train to Sydney. My journey had begun.
In my teens I had moved to Sydney and was fortunate enough to obtain Cab rides (in those days it was much easier than today) on Sydney's Red Rattlers. One particular ride the Driver got me to hold the throttle while he lit a cigarette, wow, I thought I was actually driving the train. I was bitten, trains and model trains had got into my system.

Come time to decide on my career from school and although my greatest wish was to be a Train Driver my Mum said "get a career, son", so I became a Civil Design Draftsman.
However, in the 80's with a small recession, I had no work so I finally got my dream job of becoming a Train Driver.
I started at Delec, Enfield, N.S.W., Aust. on freight trains followed by a transfer to Sydney Suburban trains working out of Central, Sydney.
During this time I made my first purchase of a number of DC Locomotives from Casula Hobbies (this was way back in the mid 80's).
That was the end of my hobby, for the time being, as I had no place to build a layout.

 I had to wait until I had moved to Brisbane, Qld., Aust. before I finally got to build a layout. This took place at my current location and commenced in June 2011. A big thank you to my wife Vesna for allowing me to build a purpose built shed for my layout.