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Everything posted by garethep

  1. I've just fitted one of these to my aeroplane and it's very simple and effective. http://www.sparkbright.co.uk/sparkright-eclipse-battery-voltage-monitor.php
  2. Thanks Kris.....I'll give that a go!
  3. I for one would be very interested in learning how you set.up the pi!
  4. Yes the deputy chief engineer is very demanding over how "his" railway is to be built
  5. Although I think there is great potential in this technology, those prices seem extremely steep! The missing factor still seems to be an incompatibility with dcc......I am certain that for wireless control to take off there needs to be a system that can merely replace the power transmission aspect of dcc but allows the existing and often expensive infrastructure that existing modellers have invested in to remain useful.
  6. Well with typical bad timing we have had 2 solid weeks of decent weather and I have been in Plymouth for most of it! Luckily today has been good weather (in between the hailstorms anyway....The joy of living in scotland). so I got some more ground works done.....I've now cut out the turf for the full extent of the main run along the path. The level at the top end still needs dropping an inch or so to give clearance under the tunnel slab. Then it's a case of pouring the concrete cutting and laying some lightweight block foundations for the raised section. These will be faced with lengths of "log roll" to keep the planning department happy! Here is a picture of the work so far.
  7. Tony....yes nearly at the point that I can call it an unfinished railway rather than just a planned one! As your temperatures are dripping we are just starting to get light evenings and marginally better weather so hopefully progress can be made......I'm away for a week or two with work but looking forward to cracking on when I get back. As for Scotland, I'm merely an English interloper but it's a nice part of the world to live and worth a visit one day. Cheers Gareth
  8. No more progress in the garden since yesterday's update but thought you might like to see a picture of today's toy!......she's not the biggest or most glamorous locomotive in preservation and I'm sure that some of the garden railways on here have more scale mileage than we do but it's still great fun and I always feel privileged to have the chance to drive her.
  9. Firstly Happy Easter to you all! Took advantage of the decent weather to get out in the garden. Started off with the laser level and took some more accurate height readings......a virtually level run is going to be possible. Next in a fit of enthusiasm I decided to "cut the first sod"
  10. Mick, Even my very basic experiment showed that different locos behave very differently on even mild gradients.....wWhile I have no doubt I could operate all the way to the "top corner" with careful loco selection and a bit of faffing about its just not worth the hassle when sticking to the left hand side of the garden and the rockery I can get to an almost level gradient without an excessive height at the garage so I'll stick with that to start with.......There is nothing stopping the addition of a steeper branchline later for short trains and specially selected locomotives. The only downside is that I really need to start at the top of the current path and work downwards to ensure the correct elevation at the patio.......iit would have been great to start with a loop at the patio to get trains running but that leaves too many potential gotchas for my limited civil engineering experience!
  11. No physical progress this.week as I'm away with work but the idea of what I want to do is starting to firm up in my head. A few of you had said it was hard to get an understanding of the overall layout of the garden so last weekend when I was on the roof doing some maintenance I took a couple of pictures which show things a bit better.....hhere is the best
  12. Kris that's great! I'm away from home for a few days but ill have a play when I get home. I have no current experience of dcc and the sprog looks like a.great way to achieve the aim at low cost. Initially I'm planning on straight radio control but dcc does offer some intriguing opportunities and I really want to have a play with sound at some point so some kind of hybrid is ideal.
  13. Kris, Good to see another new starter on here......i'll be following with interest. Especially keen to hear about the issues with the raspberry pi as I have one kicking around unused and I fancy some experiments with wireless dcc. Cheers Gareth
  14. Mick, Have you thought about cutting slices of the same blocks you built the viaduct with these could be cemented to the foundations and the track fixed in the same way as the viaduct section.....already haveing the foundations is a mixed blessing but it may be worth a trial? I think I'm going to attempt to use.the blocks.as both foundation and track bed for my line but until I start groundwork it's all still a bit "up in the air"!
  15. Thanks tgb! Next one will have some coaches on the back.
  16. The first (hopefully of many) train movement in my garden......Think I need a bit more track! IHx1D-RJh8s
  17. Made it outside again over the weekend to do some gradient trials.....Although a shortage of track meant that trials were light loco only they were certainly very encouraging with all the standard locos coping with a 5 degree (1 in 12) gradient which is the maximum I need. To see how far I could go I did some further trials with ever steeper slopes and, as I suspected, the number and condition of traction tyres makes a huge difference. The culmination of the tests was a short run at 15 degrees (1 in 4!) The class 50 with no traction tyres just slid down the track but the twin motor deltic pulled away with no problems at all! This was an extreme test and I'm now confident that what I want to do is achievable . If I miss out the top corner I can keep to 2 degree slopes throughout and still keep a sensible level at the garage. I have taken a short video of the trials but haven't figured out how to upload it.......I'll try again later it's quite impressive!
  18. Took advantage of an early finish from work and a rare spot of nice weather to take a fresh look following the suggestions and comments on here......wwhat's more Mrs ep declared herself happy to have a long raised section as long as I sort the borders and the rest of the garden at the same time.....fair enough! Having been given "planning permission" to remodel the steps I realised I was missing a couple of obvious points. ...first the majority of the slope is at the top of the garden and that, if the only reason to avoid corner c was to maintain lawnmower access, I was missing a trick! The current plan has the line exiting the garage at about breeze block viaduct height to corner a and then to the top of the current path by which time it will be in a shallow cutting and will go under the path in a short tunnel. From here the line will stay at close to ground level cutting the corner at b and avoiding the worst of the elevation change. From here it will slowly gain elevation down to the rockery area where permission has been given to build a high level station and return loop. This will block of the current mower access which is why I hadn't initially though about it but if I take out the steps and replace with a slope then that is no longer a problem. There are still loads of details to work out and negotiations over the extent of pruning of the rockery flowerbed are ongoing but an idea is now coming together helped enormously by the encouragement shown on here for which I am very grateful. Mick is right about the garage being lower than the garden so external exit height of 18 inches or so will equate to about 3 to 4 foot high on the inside which is ideal for a storage shelf. That is a lot of track and I'm very conscious that it's too much to attempt in 1 go so first stage is probably going to be an out and back run to the top of the path to get trains running and keep motivation levels up.
  19. That looks fantastic........very much a garden layout rather than a model train in the garden. I'll be happy with the latter but I have the utmost respect for those who can pull off such an integration of "real" and model scenery so well.
  20. Roddy and Iain, Thanks again for the welcome.....yes a certain amount of excavation is going to be inevitable but the moment I need a mini digger I suspect I will lose any management approval I may have gained! I like the idea of the u shape line....I'll go and have a look......The path doesn't currently do very much so I'm not averse to moving it...The only limit here is that I need access for the lawnmower to both parts of the lawn currently via the corner of the patio furthest from the garage......changing the current steps to a slope may be the excuse I need to build a tunnel! Looking forward to getting my hands on this Deltic so I can stuff it with a prototype control system ready for a run up the garden path when the weather improves.
  21. Sadly I think you are right about the front garden on all counts.....its a shame as I really like the front but it's usefulness is very limited considering the space available. Maybe I should take up modelling the snowdon mountain railway!
  22. Ian, Many thanks......I've uploaded some pictures in the planning section.....have a look and see what you think. Gareth
  23. Rossi......crossed postings....Thanks for that....I'm really keen to avoid wooden boards if possible so will look closely at this.
  24. As promised some pictures.......Please excuse the state of the garden at present......clearly there is potential to do a lot but I am worried about the slope. I can always raise the track exiting the garage to reduce the gradient but this then creates a barrier to accessing the garden if I wanted to run past the patio. The simplest solution would be to only have the "top loop" but then most of the line would be invisible from the patio.....hope this gives an idea of what I'm dealing with.
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