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  1. 4 points
    A little later than planned but here finally is a video with action over the past 2 days mainly featuring the SLW class 24 quartet in yesterday's bright sunshine.
  2. 4 points
    Yes Mick, the two viaducts are still there! Both are in need of repair, I should rebuild them, but that's too big of an undertaking to stomach, just the thought of replacing 8 metres of viaduct in-total......! I will have to put a speed restriction on the trains crossing! WEAK BRIDGE! Only half of the line is at ground level, after the pond the ground drops away so the track is about 500mm above ground, running over elevated rockeries before entering the garage. Here are some photos of the extension to the garage, which includes two tunnels (one has an oversized ventilation shaft, but it's fun to look down and see the trains pass through), and yet another viaduct.
  3. 4 points
    So with the ‘Brio’ blocks assembled and checked, the next stage was to put some tops one them. These arrived in the form of some 9mm ply....which was reclaimed and free! ...and then some upvc cladding to the sides, and some roofing felt on top.... ...and finally, some nice GWR Green (current livery) to tidy everything up... I’ve started painting the posts a stone colour so that they bland better with the garden. It’s surprising just how sturdy the structure is! This brings my work up to date, with all of the main sections done bar the felt, and once I’ve done that, I’ll make the frames up for the station area. Watch this space....
  4. 3 points
    It's bucketing it down outdoors right now so that looks like the end of play for today. I've just managed to add Kadee couplings to a couple of Bachmann MK2F coaches, stick on some paper corridor connectors and give them a quick run out along with a couple of MK3 sleepers behind the ETHEL. Poor old ETHEL has been sitting at the side of the loco shed at Shieling Bridge for months without moving a wheel so it was good to finally get her moving. Here's the train formed behind 37114 'Dunrobin Castle' crossing over Low Shott viaduct and heading in towards Shieling Bridge. Half a dozen photos and 3 video clips is all I managed before I had to hurriedly pack everything away
  5. 3 points
    We all have those kind of days now and again Iain, days where nothing seems to go right and everything seems to have been a waste of time. Lanzarote will still be there when everything sorts itself out but for the time being just enjoy what's available to you - there are far worse places around than Wiltshire to be confined. It's only 23 degrees in Lanzarote right now anyway, you'd catch your death of cold. Put the On30 to one side for another day - I find that works a treat for me. If it's still giving you grief then let it go and concentrate on what you do best with the OO gauge. It's disappointing when you receive something you've been looking forward to that doesn't work properly but it's not the end of the world. Sure there's going to be a delay of a few days while they get another one out to you but if it's what you want then it'll be worth the wait. As Dave says, just ask for a Royal Mail certificate of posting in the same way Hattons recommend you do, and it's then no longer your problem as you've done as you were instructed.
  6. 3 points
    Found this video of a really great H0 garden layout based on US motifs. Probably from the Czech Republic, but it really gave me new ideas. Have a look, it's worth it.
  7. 3 points
    I've managed to salvage the following footage taken over the past couple of days although there's nothing featuring the new Scotrail HST worth adding. I need to sort out those wobbly coaches at the very least before it can be seen.
  8. 3 points
    I was looking forward to posting some footage of the Scotrail HST and my latest class 37/4 but typically it's been a day spent faffing around trying to get things working properly. I'm sure Hornby are well chuffed with their Scotrail HST power cars and reasonably priced matching coaches but unless you're prepared to accept a massive gap between coupled vehicles you are going to want to change the couplings to bring the coaches closer together. I was delighted to see the coaches now have NEM sockets so it's a simple matter to pull out the tension locks and replace them with my preferred Kadees but how on earth do they expect you to couple them to the power cars? Pull the tension lock from the power car, replace it with a Kadee, and it ends up much lower than the adjacent coach - so low in fact that the Kadee trip pin is between the sleepers. I've had to fashion a scrap piece of plastic, drill through the shank of a Kadee coupling and the plastic, glue them together and insert a track pin through the previously drilled hole for additional strength and then secure that on top of the power car coupling drawbar so that the height of the Kadee is correct. It's a £400 rake of vehicles and I'm drilling and gluing bits of plastic to them just so they couple closer together. When I eventually got it coupled together it would run for a while and then stop abruptly as if there was some resistance in the motor. I ended up removing the body only to find one of the pickup wires had come adrift on the PCB. Out with the soldering iron this time! £400? Anyway, all's well that ends well as they say and from there on in, apart from a slight annoying wobble from coach B, it's run perfectly for the best part of two hours. There's clearly going to have to be diversions in place for me to justify this on Worsley Dale but you've got to love the HST's haven't you? It's fitted with twin TTS sound decoders that make quite a noise even outdoors, though I'm not sure how prototypical it is. Next job is to fit corridor connectors to hide the remaining gaps between vehicles. I've never been entirely happy with the alignment of the track coming off Low Shott viaduct and onto the points where the track changes to double. The track on the viaduct really needed moving over slightly but because it's been ballasted it's always seemed too much trouble however, today was the day I decided to do something about it. I cut the track on top of the viaduct and removed a section probably 15 to 18 inches in length which I replaced with a spare length. I'm really pleased with the exterior varnish I used for the ballasting - it was still solid but not too difficult to remove, even from the strip of roofing felt which I was able to reuse.
  9. 3 points
    Has anyone else noticed that lockdown + good weather has seen the popularity of garden railway expand and actual layout grow. Besides the new active member on here there are a load of new 00 gauge garden railway videos on youtube as well. Long may it continue.
  10. 3 points
    Hello All I enjoyed reading your posts and seeing the photos of your railways. There are some wonderful creations, which are I am sure an inspiration to anyone contemplating building a garden railway. Over the last few years I have been experimenting with a garden railway, and I thought some of my experience may be of interest. It was to be ‘a bit of fun’, not a serious scale model, of course, since the plants and foliage are way too big. Against that, the space available means that the scale track length can represent a few kilometers rather than 500 metres at OO gauge. I chose OO for cost reasons, and because the family already had a selection of rolling stock at that scale. The concept was to mount the track on sections of a ‘baseboard’ (not much wider than the track itself) which would be laid out in the garden for the summer and stored under cover for the winter. This would protect the track from the worst weather, and would allow most of the work of pinning the track down and wiring ‘off-site’ during the winter. The first task was to make a detailed plan of the garden, including the locations of plants and other immovable features. I then decided on a track route, and began negotiations with the Authorities over demolition orders for plants which could not be circumnavigated! I kept to a simple single-track figure of eight, with a station, passing loop and siding at each end. For me, the attraction of a garden railway is in long sweeping curves, weaving amongst foliage, and dramatic bridges and viaducts. My garden, in a Manchester suburb, is about 18 metres long, and the track follows a bed which extends down one side of the grass. The baseboard was cut from 5mm plastic sheet , sold as ‘foamed PVC’, which I found easy to cut using a jigsaw, and it will take screws like wood. It has proved durable and strong enough. The sections are 50 mm wide (for single-track) x 1 – 2 metres long, joined with a short lapping piece and stainless steel screws. During winter, the sections are hung up indoors on a couple of portable clothes-rails. I used Peco Streamline track, code 100, pinned down to the baseboard by brass pins. For underlay/ballast I used the Peco product. The railway had been outdoors for 5 or 6 summers since 2011, and the basic track survived the elements well. However, the underlay disintegrated, or maybe it was eaten by slugs, stolen by birds for their nests, or otherwise vandalized. I replaced the underlay with roofing felt, which looks ballast-like from a distance, and weathers well, but does not conform to the sleepers like the foam underlay. The other track problem encountered concerned the points: there is a small over-centre spring used to hold the points set which is subject to corrosion and clogging with earth. The clogging can usually be cured by a water jet from a syringe. I have had to replace some of the springs (obtainable as spares from Peco) and it is, shall we say, a challenging task! As regards the electric power supply, I initially used conventional pick-up from the track (not DCC). I bridged all fishplates with soldered wires, and ran a cable down the garden to avoid voltage drop problems. The result was satisfactory initially, but the track needed laborious cleaning before use, and the loco wheels needed regular cleaning. These problems led me to consider on-board battery power and radio-control. The modern Lithium Polymer batteries are small and lightweight, and I have converted four locomotives now to this system (obtained from Micron Radio Control). This gives a run time of 1 – 2 hours depending on the usage and the loco (different locos have surprisingly differing current draws). Of course it removes the need for any wiring and isolation switches in the outdoor environment, and several locomotives can be run on the same track, which is particularly useful on the long tracks available in the garden. The points (6 in total) are not power-operated. The bridges I used are the commonly available plastic kits, and they survive well outside for the summers. For platforms and viaduct arches I used expanded polystyrene, recycled from packaging, cut to shape and painted, which survives surprisingly well considering the material’s low strength. Other buildings and trackside items are deployed when the railway is in use, but stored indoors. All in all it has been a pleasurable hobby, and has been much appreciated by visiting grandchildren, but as with any outdoor activity, we are always at the mercy of our British weather! Peter
  11. 3 points
    Just a few clips from yesterday of the sprung points using the short length of GEM Mercontrol steel wire soldered to the rail sides. You can see the tie bar moving back and forth as each wagon passes through in the first clip of the class 20. Apologies for the rather extended whistle from the Black 5 in the final clip!
  12. 2 points
    Evening all, I'm Chris from sunny (well, sometimes) south Devon and I'm currently in the middle of building my first garden railway for my little lad who is 4 this year. A quick bit about me I suppose. My father and I built a 00 gauge layout in my bedroom when I was about 8, we then moved to the loft and expanded. We moved to Devon and again started a project in the loft this time switching to DCC. Years have flown by! We were just getting to the scenery part of the loft then I moved out, got married and had a little dude with another on the way. My son is MAD on trains and with permission from the chief we have been given the green light to get a garden railway setup. It will be a single line loop which doubles back on itself giving the impression of a double line most of the way around and my dad is building us a nice bridge to add to the interest. We are using inside the garage as our main station and "Thomas style diesel works". I've done a lot of research and went with 18mm ply supported by lengths of batten, treated fence posts, paint, 15yr roofing felt etc. There seems to be a million ways to do it and a lot of opinions on the right way so I've just gone with what works for me. The layout will be DCC operated with point motors, signals etc and hopefully controlled by something like the Z21 system so I can tweak train speeds from the comfort of my chair in the garden using my phone or tablet. I'll be having a go at building the platforms from scratch and also a dabble at weathering buildings etc for the first time. Anyway, enough waffle, lets have some pictures Hope everyone is staying safe and enjoying the nice weather when it appears. Cheers P.S - I decided to call it the pickle line as that's our nickname for our son
  13. 2 points
    So I spent a couple of hours this afternoon just running trains a s a reward for soldering joints left right and centre. I thought I'd do some video's at the same time, however, it doesn't always turn out right.... I had 6 trains out on the layout this afternoon, with two in each direction at once, the most I've run solo. Can't wait for this lockdown to be over so I can have my planned "open day" with friends round to drive whilst I film!
  14. 2 points
    Hi Chris, welcome to the forum You're right, there's many ways to build a layout outdoors and I think if you take a look through the layout threads on here you'll find most of us have chosen to do it our own particular way. Elevated layouts like the one you're constructing are, in my opinion, less susceptible to the effects of the UK climate than layouts built close to or at ground level. I would think that you'll be fine with 18mm ply, a coating of preservative and a covering of roofing felt. I use the Z21 system outdoors having transferred the Prodigy Advance system to the attic layout and I'm slowly getting used to it now. It seemed awkward at first because I was more used to having dials and buttons rather than sliding my fingers up and down a screen and I still find a traditional handset preferable and easier to use but Z21 does have its advantages. The drawback I find is that it's not easy to see a screen display outdoors, especially in bright sunshine, which is where I tend to be when operating my layout so I tend to use the WLANMAUS wireless handset when away from the shed section. I've made it my mission to avoid using point motors outdoors wherever I can and operate my layout with just a single motorised point in the garden section. I'd like to add signals to the ground level section but I doubt it's something that could be left out permanently and I don't want to get round to having to put things out and pack things away later. I don't believe the 'chief' fell for that one for one minute! So apart from 'Thomas' what else are we likely to see on the Pickle Line in the near future? Do you still have the stock from your previous layout?
  15. 2 points
    More work done - the branch junction is in, and the point control rods. I also managed to lay some more track towards the tunnel. Here’s a good shot showing the super elevation. The weather is meant to be cracking for the next few days so I’m going to attempt to make it round to the station area, then start going back the other way from the other side of the viaduct.
  16. 2 points
    Further to my previous post and just as a reminder for @jimbob that if you choose to implement sprung points on your layout you may need to add additional weight to some of your lightest wagons. I found that coaches were fine but small 2-axle wagons really do need some additional weight otherwise they tend to ride up onto the point blades rather than pushing them across. Just the tonic! Today I rediscovered just what it is that I love about the garden railway - it's the high quality sound from a really top notch model locomotive. It's been a few years now since I purchased my first SLW (Suttons Locomotive Works) class 24 and I remember being enthralled with the sound quality and driveability that these little loco's offer. Since purchase they've more or less remained in their boxes apart from one or two brief running/photo sessions but today has been the first time that all four models have made an appearance on track at the same time and it's just been a really wonderful experience. They've performed faultlessly and sound superb. Most of the time I've simply run them round light engine but 24081 had a Kadee fitted previously and so I was able to couple it up to a rake of blue/grey Mk1s and send it on its way. It's great fun accelerating, coasting, and then manually 'braking' the train to a stand. Here's a few photos of 24081 And here's another two SLW class 24 loco's on Shieling Bridge shed. D5098 in BR Green with small yellow warning panel can be seen in front of D5000
  17. 2 points
    Jon Price at The Bradnor Branchline. I bought my first stone cast one going on for 10 years ago and more recently the resin cast one as seen in the above photos. Looking at his website it appears his online store is going through an extremely lengthy 'refurbishment' so perhaps if you're interested it would be best to drop him an email or phone. I wouldn't expect an immediate response to either an initial contact or a future order - it does take some time getting through to him and receiving your goods. http://www.thebradnorbranchline.com
  18. 2 points
    I had some track delivered over the weekend so I got on with laying a double thickness track bed using more felt and today I started track laying. It’s not the quickest job because I’ve got transition curves and super elevation to factor in. I’m just waiting for a few more points and I’ll be able to get all of this section laid as a double line, then it’s back on to the station frames to finish those off with felt and then start laying track on that bit. I made a schoolboy error and didn’t order enough track to do a complete double track circuit, but there’s more turning up at the end of the month, by which time, I should have this lot wired up. The CDL unit hasn’t arrived yet so nothing to report back on the AD1-HP yet but I’ll crack on as soon as it lands.
  19. 2 points
    It's not long since the loop line was reinstated but today I've taken most of it back up and replaced it with some new concrete sleepered track. I've left two lengths of wooden sleeper in place where 'the loop' joins the points immediately after Low Shott viaduct as those 2 lengths hadn't been altered so it seemed a waste to discard them. I suppose now that the track has been reinstated, the point motors removed, and with the points themselves acting as 'spring points' I should refrain from calling it the 'loop' as it now forms a double track section. I'll have to decide whether it's going to be the up or the down. I was never going to be happy with the old wooden sleeper track so I'm really glad I decided to replace it. I feel like I can safely move on now and begin thinking about ballasting. Although there's not been much happening outdoors I have managed to fit sound to another class 37/4 as well as to the Scotrail HST which has now been joined by its set of coaches. I was hoping maybe to run one or both today but I've run out of time so that's for another day.
  20. 2 points
    I agree with @scoobyra that the viaduct on the garage extension looks magnificent and not something I would have expected to find on an OO gauge garden layout. If that's a commercially available product I might have to start thinking about an extension on Worsley Dale! The Hornby Dublo girder bridge sides look entirely at home spanning across the pond, forming a structure that you can be incredibly proud of - a stunning setting. After going back over your earlier description of the layout, I do hope that all the uncertainty has now passed and that you can continue to develop and extend this wonderful layout. I hope too that sharing your efforts on the forum will give you that extra incentive to press forward and bring it to fruition.
  21. 2 points
    That stone viaduct is exactly what I need for my railway Mark, did you make that yourself? It’s fantastic.
  22. 2 points
    It may seem a little strange to have what would normally be a permanent structure, bolted together, so let me explain. We currently live in a rental property as my father is terminally ill, and we may need to up sticks at shortish notice - hopefully not too short notice as I like having my Dad around. I’ve not seen any ‘portable’ garden layouts before, but those of you that already know my modelling style know that I don’t do things by the book, and if I start off with a plan, it’s normally 6 times removed when it gets to its final incarnation! The triangle originally had three double junctions but I wasn’t happy with it, so I decided I’d take one of the return lines underneath the straight lines to / from the shed, but this didn’t quite work out how I thought, due to the rather large Minorcan Palm, so Plan C arrived whereby one set of lines now go under the other and converge by the shed. These pictures will explain.... The gradient works out at 1 in 48, and this is achieved by lowering the right hand chord slightly as it passes under the other lines and then it rises to meet them just before the shed. ....more pictures to follow...
  23. 2 points
    So now you’ve seen the plan, it’s time to show you what it looks like. The whole thing is built like set track, wooden blocks of varying angles 4/5/6 degrees screwed and glued together to make a frame... The frame is bolted together in 6ft-ish sections and sits on top of PVC pipe posts, sunk in to 8” of concrete. The frame is treated 75x22 timber and once assembled, it’s given two coats of wood protector.
  24. 2 points
    But you can get pretty close to such a scale model. It's a lot of work, of course. But I'm confident there will be a time. And the plants may not be to scale, but their colors are very lifelike (😜) so you can never get them in a replica ...
  25. 1 point
    It depends what the actual radii you are using are. If you are using setrack radius curves then best to use setrack track centres. Also depends on rolling stock. 0-6-0s and 4 wheel wagons will probably pass at streamline centres even at setrack radii. The Hornby 800 / Azuma / IET set might be unlikely to pass another 800 set at Streamline spacing below 1200mm radius.
  26. 1 point
    It looks fantastic. And the curves just look better with super elevation. Especially when you can have such large radii as we do in our gardens.
  27. 1 point
    I think it's a wise move to keep everything 'electronic' under cover of the garage. It's quite possible to have motorised points out in the open as you'll have seen on several other layout threads but I would always recommend keeping things as simple as possible. The less there is to go wrong or cause problems the better the experience will be, especially for the youngster. Get the layout up and running well first and then you can add things at a later date should you feel the need to do so. I've been running my current layout since 2012 or so and rather than adding to it, I try to take away as many complications and sources of potential problems as possible. It's a sense you only gain after a few years of experiencing the frustrations that garden layouts can deliver. The loft layout looks nice. Does you Dad still use it regularly? Is it still a work in progress?
  28. 1 point
    Hi Chris, I like the look of your work so far, that's some good quality construction which will stand you in good stead. I think your track plan is a great idea. How long will the loop be? and how long will it take for a train to reappear at the station from the garden? cheers chris
  29. 1 point
    So, after yesterdays frustrations with the On30 and OO, I cleaned up the O gauge and gave some recent purchases a run out. The Heljan Hymek has had sound fitted by YouChoos, who, luckily for me, are only about 5 miles away. The 2 plate wagons are kit built and thus very light - lots of weight soon got them to stay on the track. Unfortunately, the builder has put some plate loads on them - I had a different plan, but hey ho. The hoppers suffer from the same issues - hence the temporary addition of the golf balls! The 12t open (Skytrex) has a massive lump of weight in it - that was only gonna pull everything else off! The brake van isnt new, but has now got a working tail lamp.
  30. 1 point
    Mixed traffic and mixed fortunes Today began with yet another outing for the coal train of 16 ton mineral wagons, pulled this time by the elderly Hornby Dublo 8F. About half the train is Hornby Dublo, as can be seen from the solid brake gear. Anyone counting rivets? Shame about the cab full of motor. Then at Throstlebeck, a BR Standard 4-6-0 came past with a cross-country passenger train. Being the 1950s, there is no provision on the train for refreshments. Then, as the train ran past Black Ghyll, there was the sound of wheels bouncing on sleepers, and disaster struck: The engine and first vehicle stayed on the track; the following eight didn't. The occupants of Sycamore Lodge were very lucky to escape harm - and so was the railway, as no damage was done to any of the coaches. The cause of the accident was the nut on the regulator. He was away from the controls, setting up his camera to take a video - which is always tempting fate!
  31. 1 point
    Test piece of track weathered and painted. The weather has been a bit rubbish over the last two days so I’ve not been able to do much, except make a start on the viaduct. This is a Wills plastic kit that I’m probably going to fill with resin. I need to extend the piers too. Hopefully I can get some more track laid soon.
  32. 1 point
    I've used a short length of GEM Mercontrol 'steel' wire Jim, as used in their 'wire in tube' point control systems. It's obviously going to rust over time but I just wanted to make sure it actually worked before going any further. I see you can easily obtain stainless steel wire in short lengths much cheaper than the GEM offering. I also have some piano wire/spring steel which is very similar to the GEM but slightly thicker that I purchased to replace the operating wires on some Tortoise point motors. If I think on I'll measure the thickness of both so you have an idea of what to go for.
  33. 1 point
    The sleeper waiting for the freight to clear was a real highlight.
  34. 1 point
    I many only have 12’ of track laid but it doesn’t stop me playing trains!
  35. 1 point
    There’s some tiny track pins to temporarily tack the track down until I ballast and glue it. As for the cant, I do it all by eye, although 2mm is about the most you’d ever want to go. I’ve just used strips of felt, pushed under the sleepers and the further you go towards to centre, the more elevation you get. The downside to doing it this way, and I’ve seen many people on YouTube so it - some of them with thousands of followers, is that the trains lurch in to the corners. At the moment, most of the track is floating, so it’s very smooth, and once the ballast goes down, it will fix it in place. In the real world, the elevation rotates around the track centre, so the inner rail would drop, but it’s way too long winded to do it in model form.
  36. 1 point
    Styrene cab Just the roof to cut, and some tidying up of those edges.
  37. 1 point
    I thought the same, but I think whats going on is that they've offset some of the cost with the PSU, as that seems rather expensive to me.
  38. 1 point
    made the most of the good weather we had, and the dry days since the weather turned to get further with the build. 2 new 2ft wide, 160cm long boards have been added, which will feature a small loco yard, a goods loop and a couple of sidings (when the points etc arrive from hattons!!) the control panel in grey shown has the final track plan in this area. (a couple of printing errors on the sheet which i'll fix later) The remote / local switch will eventually switch which controller the sections are attached to... remote will be hornby's hm6000 when it is released. Local is a gaugemaster w. back in the shed, another switch will do the same thing... but for now, switching it to remote takes the controller feed from the gaugemaster w. local feeds from the gaugemaster D.
  39. 1 point
    I'm a great fan of gentle curves, Mike, so I'm impressed by your modular approach to track base. So much more realistic than those clunky straight sections that many people have to use. It all looks most promising. As for black uPVC supports, I've had no trouble with mine in eight years. There are about half a dozen of varying heights, and the taller ones were made with two different pipe diameters telescoped into one another and held by a couple of screws - to provide scope for adjustment if needed at any stage. One is just about visible in the photo below. Good luck with the rest of your layout!
  40. 1 point
    The word the springs to mind is "Brave". I recommend you give the topic a read. Ive been using the car door lock motors successfully for years now.
  41. 1 point
    So your wooden structures look very stable and seems well made. This gives your railroad a really solid base. Great work!
  42. 1 point
    That's a nice solid start Mike along with some very neat woodworking skills. From your initial plan I take it that the curved section in the photos is in the top right of the plan (bottom right of your garden) and so immediately before it where the straight timber is laid out will be the proposed removable viaduct? Does the pipe in the foreground indicate the height of the layout from ground level? Have you seen the plastic pipe used as supports for the track base before? I suggested it might be a suitable alternative to wooden posts on another thread a week or two ago, though I was thinking more of the square profile downpipe. I wondered if you had any previous experiences of it?
  43. 1 point
    That is what I had guessed. I had a passenger ride in a Type RA once when I was looking to buy my own. Even as a passenger I could tell how direct and sharp they feel with those alu panels, a very impressive motor. I've had my UK turbo for 12 years, can't let it go.
  44. 1 point
    Cheers Barry, it’s a name I’ve had for years and should be pronounced - Scooby Arr Ay, owing to the fact that one of my Subarua Impreza cars was an RA version. I get called Scooby Raaaa and Scoo By Raaaa which proves I didn’t put as much thought in to that as I do my modelling 😆
  45. 1 point
  46. 1 point
    Welcome to the forum Mike. I'm guessing you are an experienced modeller so this is already well thought through. What is behind the name Scoobyra? Regards, Barry.
  47. 1 point
    I know it is nowt to do with me, but 'm really pleased the you have that twin track section back up and running. The spring points idea and implementation is genius. I hope you get a lot of enjoyment from the sight of trains passing in the garden and you ain't too hard on yourself when you crash trains into each other, cos it's going to happen, it always does.
  48. 1 point
    I've just removed the spring and elastic from the first 'sprung' point and changed it to the later method which is proving to be a big improvement. Using the short length of springy wire there's less force required to push the points across when wagons are running through them and even the lighter wagons are now able to handle the points successfully. The points are beginning to look in a sorry state after all the pinning, lifting and relaying they've endured over the years but they're still working well and at least there's now less about them for me to worry about. There's no longer an over-centre spring and there's also a big chunk of plastic missing from immediately in front of the tie-bar where the over-centre spring was located - but I found that necessary in order to get friction free travel. The only problem with removing that plastic is I believe it holds the tie-bar/point blades in place and without it they can work their way forwards until the heel comes adrift from the wing rail so a little dab of glue was necessary just to hold them back. It doesn't prevent movement in the blades themselves. The heel of the point blades fits inside the wing rail and that's where I've applied the dab of glue. I'll fit a spare sleeper in the empty void ensuring it's kept clear of the tie-bar so that it doesn't create friction. I've done a lot of messing around on the layout, creating unnecessary work, doing things that really weren't important, but I feel that springing these two sets of points has been really worthwhile and it makes operating so much easier than before. I don't have to worry about the points anymore, there's no switches to flick, buttons to press or anything. Trains running clockwise stay to the outer track of the double track section and anti-clockwise trains automatically switch to the inner. For my needs it's perfect. I just need to remember that when there's two trains running I need to hold one of them in the double track section! The railway cottage protecting the auto frog module now has a base and a driveway and I've turned it so that the front door faces away from the railway which I imagine is how it would have been. The residents will certainly get a great view of passing trains.
  49. 1 point
    Not much running as the battery which powers the inverter for controller power has died but l decided to do some much needed trackside beautification in the train set area ( what l call the roundy roundy section). Anyway, several sawn up pallets and two rolls of artificial grass latter and l am not so embarrassed by it any more. Plants are a problem at the moment so it is a matter use what l've got. Went to the local garden centre and basically got trampled on by little old ladies in a buying frenzy, l have the trolly mark's on my back to prove it! Managed to pick up some differant Sedem plants and l will see how the go. The area is in shade most of the day, nice when the suns out for operating but not so good for growing plants. Any plant suggestions welcome.
  50. 1 point
    After a long running session on Friday, not much moved over the weekend. A couple of bonds had failed, both rails on the same track join! That was desoldered on Saturday and a unit was run back and forth through it to check all was well. The rest of the time was spent pondering, or beard stroking, spending more time thinking about a problem than working on it. I have one moveable platform. Its made of the cheap Hornby platform sections. On Friday I thought of how I could improve the end ramps to fit in with the scenics I have at one end and will be creating next at the other. The beard stroking was about how I would go about building the new end ramps. I actually started the job on Saturday, before tea, bu this is no indication that it will be finished this year. Anyhow. Low I did finish it on Sunday. The before and after show the new design. The platform looks longer, and it is, but only by 15cm. I've moved it down to fill the gap between the station and the scenic board. This has freed up space at the other end for a new scenic board, I have over a meter to play with between the Pub and the Station. the space to the right of the tracks needs a small railway yard building on it, S&T cabinets etc. The platform looks part of the scene now, rather than something plonked by the railway. I've already started the beard stroking on the new scenic board.
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