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About mainthreadmartin

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  1. A quick update. Sadly as of last October I was put under threat of redundancy and in Jan this was made official. As of 21st April I will be redundant. So, my thoughts have not been on the garden railway of late and until I am back in employment the project is on hold.
  2. Re Computer Control Check out RocRail as this is a nice bit of Open Source software that is very like Railroad & Co TrainController. Look here :- http://wiki.rocrail.net/doku.php A bit simpler to use than JMRI - I only use JMRI DecoderPro which is terrific.
  3. Ian, Excellent info - many thanks. I will certainly be adding the extra wiring to my outdoor points as you suggest plus making up some little boxes to house the points themselves as per your template.
  4. Mick, Thanks for confirming that my planning will stand me in good stead. In the past I have tended to rush into getting something up and running but with this project it is going to be a bit more paced as it needs careful construction to get the best from it. I am trying to think through the building process so that I assemble the tools etc I need before I get stuck in, so getting a laser level and long spirit level are going to be needed at the outset. The shed will be used for storage of the felt and smaller stuff so that needs to be the first item to construct. I am hoping to get th
  5. Mick, Yes, I am going for the multi level layout as I want to have a railway that runs in the landscape through valleys, over bridges and disappears and reappears from view. I will be able to combine gardening and the railway at long last. At present I am trying to concentrate on how to build the low breeze block walls and get the gradients correct over their length. Plus the flats sections flat. Sounds a silly thing to be focused on but my testing ( and your own experience) shows that to run 10 coach trains the gradients have to be even and as gentle as possible. I am going for 1 : 120
  6. Chris and Mick, The size of the wire needed for bonding the rail joins really only has to cope with a load of 1.5 amps max for OO. Even the droppers from your main DCC bus or main feed for DC would only need that. Why? Well for DCC you should have enough droppers to spread the load from your main 5 amp bus so that any one set of droppers and rail joins only has to feed one loco's power requirements. With DC it is the same as you only have one loco per section, so provided the wires can supply the max load that is OK. If you do get 2 locos ( double headed ) them the 1.5 amps is still e
  7. Chris, Like the pictures of your progress - I have been inspired by everyones work so far. I hope you don't mind my saying this but I think you are giving yourself a headache with the soldering. The wires you are using are a little bit thick for the job and because of that they need a large hot soldering iron to supply enough heat to make a soldered joint. I think you could reliably drop down the wire size without any detriment plus you won't need to hold the iron onto the wire so long before it melts the flux and solder. A couple of tips to make the soldering easier : 1 - Use a g
  8. All, As I am designing my Garden Railway I am faced with a decision as to whether the running tracks will be completely flat or whether to have a figure of 8 with a flyover. What should I assume to be the maximum gradient based on the following : 1 - Using Bachmann diesels pulling 8-12 coaches. 2 - Using Hornby & Bachmann steam pulling 8-12 coaches 3 - Goods trains as long as I can manage but would like 20+. My garden plot is about 40 foot by 35 foot so if I assume a difference of 4 inches for the flyover and a max gradient of 1 inch in 10ft ( 1:120 ) I c
  9. Ian, Many thanks for the speedy reply. Yes, I had noticed a similar picture in your online photo album. Is the box simply made to fit over the top of the point motor as it sits on its base - looks like that from the photo. Is the box lined with any form of insulation? Apart from the siezure of the motor, do you get any problems with the peco point at all? What is the grease and where are you getting it from, if I can ask?
  10. Hi, I have been inspired to start the planning of my own DCC garden railway in OO. A quick question though :- is it possible to operate peco points outdoors reliably? Indoors I use the peco point motors without problem but not sure about how they will cope with the elements if outside. I suppose they could be hidden in lineside buildings and operated via the plastic rod supplied with the peco base. The main station I am going to house in a large shed so electrics for points and signals etc would be protected and in a permanently dry space. Similarly my Branch station would be in
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