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Everything posted by Dave1013

  1. Unfortunately due to poor rail conditions services on Goddard Junction Railway are suspended
  2. I have been on the Metro several times and agree it runs very well. Like the London underground I can't see any benefit of a guard or second crew. I still believe that it is beneficial to have a qualified second train crew on suburban main line routes. It is funny how people who use Metro type services seem to know the rules on how to use them. Unlike some passengers on the "big" railway.
  3. The mind boggles! What if your beardy man with the rucksack on the tube was a computer hacker. I use the Hornby railmaster computer controlled set up on my indoor layout. Although I'm not suggesting the French are using a scaled up railmaster but if they do its ok cos very little will run. Mind you look at the Docklands railway that seems to work ok
  4. Hi Jimbob I agree that the role of a traditional guard has changed significantly over the years. However you make a good point over the Driver who drove off with a passenger trapped in the doors. I understood he was cleared of blame because of a train door sensor fault. It does highlight the fact that he has to check the door closed warning, check the signal aspect the right away signal . As the guard gives the close door request from the platform they will see trapped people. And as he has not given the Driver the right away or proceed signal the train should not move. Chatting to a Southwest trains guard the other Day, he pointed out that the second crew member on Driver operated trains is not safety trained and classed as non safety critical. Worrying. I also have no connection with the big railway but a keen interest as a passenger . South Western Railway are going to raise the issue of driver only trains according to their top man on tv the other day. Looks like this is the way of the world now. Dave
  5. Hi Guys I have been a Passenger guard for ten years and diesel rail car driver for a couple of years at the Didcot railway centre. Although I have no association with the big railway I am getting quite wound up with the current trend to remove guards from our suburban trains.The media are having a field day alleging the resulting dispute is all about who closes the doors. Good Grief! Granted on preserved railways the Guard has to check all slam doors are closed and all passengers and onlookers are clear. When it is Safe give the right away to the driver. Having boarded watch the platform during departure. If an incident occurrers you (guard) can stop the train by putting in the brake setter. Trust me during my ten years I have had to use the setter several times. My point is that Guards are a safety critical member of train crew. With their knowledge of the route and the emergency procedures not to mention a professional preasance and assistance to passengers, I think a qualified Guard is essential. What do you think? Dave.
  6. I like the look of that bridge Tony. Using that design will make the whole thing nice and rigid. I will need to remove it occasionally for access.
  7. Hi Guys Thanks for your comments Tony. The layout is 25 feet by 12 feet. I have taken out the peninsula track and 're routed it to be a freight line. I will definitely keep an eye on your thread especially the bridge as I would like to have a bridge on my layout. I'm intrigued by the coat hanger system you refer to. Don't worry about how long your layout is taking to build. From what I have seen so far you modules are awsom. More pics from Goddard Junction soon. Cheers Dave
  8. Here in the UK it was also a dry day but not so sunny. I know what you mean about household electrical goods. Same here. Gem Mercontrol groundframe levers can be found at www.lytchettmanormodels.co.uk. there are several levers both single and frame. My system does not use the wire in tube method due to the distance involved. Levers 1 to 6 are servo switches. The rest are Mercontrol lever frames. An 8 way and a 6 way . These connect to the points with steel cable running through tiny screw eyes. At the point it connects to a bell crank and a tension spring. So far so good, I can adjust the cable tention at the lever frame. There is a different approach with the 6 way, I m using heavy duty fishing line to operate mostly signals on this frame. The same spring tensioner is used. This one has a mini microswitch to change a point position signal. The servo switches control a servo controller and servos which throw points that are difficult to run manual cables to. It has taken a few attempts to come up with the current system. Both the steel 1mm cable and the 30lb fishing line work as well as each other mechanically, the steel cable looks better though. The furthest signal under manual control is 18 feet and 17 feet for a point. Most are much closer. Dave.
  9. Thanks for your comments Tony. I have a total of 14 mechanical levers, 12 are in use with 2 spare. They control 8 sets of points and 4 semaphore signals. Each lever is connected by a 1mm steel wire rope with a return spring to keep it taught. The lever frames are made by Mercontrol I'll find a url address for them. Weather was too wet to take photos today, I'll have a go tomorrow. Dave
  10. Looks like the peminANT way gang is at work today.
  11. Hi and welcome to the forum. Looking good so far. I like the pointwork, interesting to look at and use. I agree with your choice of express points. All my standard points are now express and much more reliable. Good luck with the build. Cheers Dave
  12. I have ordered a 12 Amp hour battery. Meanwhile here are some pictures of my little solar system. The white connector box is for 5v out for the three lighting sets.
  13. Hi guys My latest Mercontrol groundframe has arrived, they seem to take a month to arrive once ordered. I have installed it today and finally I have all the points mechanically controlled plus semaphore signals. Two of these are 17+ feet away! When I pull off a signal it behaves very much like the full size version. Very satisfying pulling a (albeit small) lever and seeing a point move some distance away. Heatshrink sleeving gives the lever colour. I think I had better tidy up the original frame it looks a mess. Comments welcome. Cheers Dave
  14. Right I've measured the consumption of my three sets of timed led lights. They draw 2.5 watt hours for 6 hours, which amounts to 15 Wh per day. Allowing for a 50% over calculation, the on line solar calculator I used suggests a 4 to 5 Ah battery and 5 watts of solar power. So I'm close, just need to upgrade the battery. Looks like I have enough power to run my led signals as well. Cheers Dave
  15. Well roddy you were dead right about Q's fascinating comments. About 40 + years ago I was an apprentice auto electrical engineer and learnt about lead acid battery construction. Absolutely right about surface area for short term, high amp demand, about 200+ amps for a starter. Just shows how technology has moved on there were no leisure batteries or sealed gel batteries then. I didn't realize the different makeup of leisure batteries, makes sense though. As I am only running some LED lighting and some signals I was thinking that a modest sized deep cycle battery of around 15 to 20 amp hrs would suffice. I had best measure the current drain and work it out properly though. Dave
  16. Hi guys Well this is encouraging. Jimbob I think I will follow your lead and invest in a bigger battery. All my electrics are 12volts or 5volts and dcc track power comes from inside the house, so I don't need an inverter. I do fancy one though. I will tidy up my (embarrassing) wiring and post some photos. Dave.
  17. Hi all. I am experimenting with low power timed led lighting sets at around £4 each from eBay. These use the micro leds and a small battery control box. When activated they stay on for 6 hrs and off for 18. They give a bright light for their size, but batteries only last a few weeks. I thought about solar power, prompted by the outbreak of summer. I had a 12v 1.7Ah lead acid battery so I needed a solar battery charger and a charge regulator. My first solar panel was a 1.5watt panel from Maplins. This didn't keep up with the load of three light sets coming on for 6hrs. I got two 3watt panels and wired them all in parallel giving a possible output of 7.5watts. So far this has kept up with demand even under overcast conditions. Has anyone played with this type of thing? I am not sure if I'm using the correct components. Any thoughts guys Dave
  18. Here are two night shots. Sorry they are a bit blurry.
  19. Hi all Here are a few photos of the Goddard junction railway layout. All the buildings are glued down after I collected them from the grass having been blown off by the wind. Lights are installed in the town and stations. I have used outdoor timed micro led sets (about £3 each from eBay) they come on for 6hrs and off for 18. So far so good with the Mercontrol signal and point levers. The best control wire seems to be 30lb fishing line. My 1mm steel rope wire in tube idea failed as it binds too easily. Tony, thanks for your advice. looks like the photo upload issue was the file size of my new phone camera. I went back to my old phone for these pics which uploaded fine.
  20. Thanks for the video Roddy. That is a very impressive lever frame. Definately food for thought. All my control gear is on the surface of the baseboard, a small modification to the frame would accomodate surface oporation. Great idea for bellcranks, I will be giving that a go.
  21. Hi all Thanks for your supportive comments. I am still new to this part of the hobby. That is why all your comments are so welcome and helpful. Tony, that looks a mighty strong baseboard looking forward to following progress on your layout. Just posted another short vid on youtube. link above. I must get on with the point rodding and ballasting. Heres to a good summer.
  22. Hi Guys I seem to be having problems loading photos to my postings. I am using the same source as before and the same file size. It goes through the upload progress bar then reports an error. Same thing with the gallery, I've created a new album but cant upload to it. Has anyone got any ideas?
  23. Hi All Well I have made a start on all those Ideas that you get during the winter nights. All main line points upgraded to express points. Branch line extention with the addition of a small villiage. The other thing I wanted to do, was one of those drivers eye view videos. Having purchased a tiny camera to blue tack to the front of one of my RC locos, all high teck stuff here. I recorded a test run today in the rain, that will be a bank holiday then. I edited the resulting video and watched the finished product. This is the first time I have seen the railway close up, you can see everything. I have now added about 200 more jobs to the to do list! I have put the video on youtube under Goddard Junction Railway. Im having a problem uploading pics to my posts at the moment but will keep trying.
  24. Further report.on Groundframe. Having tested my electro powered groundframe which works well, I felt that I was cheating. I went back to the Mercontrol leverframe and changed all the wire in tube bowden cable for cord. Using a heavy duty braided fishing line. This is spring tensioned and so far so good. I will let the weather get at it for a few days and report back.
  25. Hi chaps Here is a short report on testing of the Ratio plastic lever frame. As I feared if there is any resistance in the prodding or Bowden cable the bottom linkage within the lever unit will break. However the system works well with signals which are pulled off by cord and screw eye method. I have made up a battery powered, switch controlled servo unit to try. Same Bowden cable and cord system just an electro mechanical operating system. Dave
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