With the up side embankment receiving a fair degree of grassing & tree rearrangement the old down side with the facia board left a lot to be desired, not only was the arrangement too low but owing to the perfect elbow height it was all but impossible to maintain any tree or shrub along the low cutting form along that side.
The other aspect or reason is that when in Sydney, the old layout had a similar gradient with a sharper curve as well as a high side to facia which created a very different & realistic exhaust echo that bounced off the higher facia side from sound equipped locomotives as they ascended the grade. Hopefully with this height increase a similar affect will also be created, although it is not as likely to be as great.
To enable a better embankment on that side as well as raised the facia to a better height was going to need a degree of work & uncertainty if it would work or not. As much of that part of the layout & edge had already been formed & was strong I did not want to remove it, so the solution was to place some 18mm spacers on the outside of the existing facia, then cut another piece of 3mm ply & screw & glue to the outside. Then fill the gap with foam off cuts to take the new plaster.
The old saying of oils aint oils Sol, applies to the ply as well, the previous ply I had used on the facia had quite nice smooth sides to it, but the new ply was only smooth on one side with a fair degree of roughness about it.
To get the strength & height I cut the ply to the same height as the existing facia & added an extra 180mm in height to the side. This allowed me to securely screw & glue the new facia to the spacers & provide the extra height without worries, as radius is quite tight, with the 2440 sheet enough to almost go completely around the outside of the climb, & only another short section needed to cover the distance.
Since these photo's have been taken I have put down the base for the new embankments on the down side, given the background another coating of the blue sky, & started the base scenery for it. Next steps will be to add grasses & then the final sky colours prior to the trees & scrub to go in, another couple of weeks steady work,