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Starry, starry night. ♪ ♫ - Backscenes - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sun Sep 28th, 2014 01:14 pm
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MaxSouthOz
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As my layout is designed to run at night, I found that the standard paper back scenes looked unconvincing.

I thought a dark night sky with stars might be the go.

I wanted to see how I could use the reflected light from a few (eight), 5000 MCD high intensity LEDs.

So I made up a light box out of 3 mm MDF with a LED at the centre, looking through a 5/32" hole, and then made concentric holes around it; also using smaller sized drills.



The thing sat on a background of Alfoil, for extra reflection.



Here are a couple of photos of how the experiment came out.





Emboldened by the results, I created a template based on a single, bright star with smaller ones around it.  The top of the lens of the LED, pointing along a row of smaller holes.



The multiplier effect of the obverse and the reverse sides, gave me many options as I rotated the template through 360º.  I decided that I wanted areas of black sky between the star groups, so eight groups looked right.

I've started to paint the backboard.  Brown at the bottom for the loom of the city lights behind, grey for the sky and black with over spray to represent rain in the distance.

First I had to prepare the platform which is the base for the scene, by wiring it to take the light boxes.



There is a sub-bus running along the bottom, which can be connected to the DCC system, or to the 12 Volt DC bus.  Later I plan to have decoders in the buildings and for the star light boxes, but for now, I'm staying with the DC.



You can see the jacks for the warehouses and the one marked Back Board.



With the holes drilled, the LEDs were connected to their resistors and taped in place with masking tape.  That is to hold them secure while the PVA saddles set up.



Test as you go.  The power supply is my home made DC train controller.  There is a multimeter in parallel to set the Voltage at 12.  All good.



Next, the backs of the light boxes were covered with Alfoil to act as a reflector.  Very fiddly business.  ;-)



Then the protective 3 mm MDF backs were tacked on to the walls of the light boxes.  I used short track pins which can easily be levered off for repairs.

Now, the moment of truth . . .



Not too bad.

Let's see how it looks on the layout.



That will do nicely.  :thumbs



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 Posted: Sun Sep 28th, 2014 03:48 pm
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Gary
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Looks good Max. Does this mean that all your running sessions will be at night ?? Or do you have a 'daylight' backscene as well ? ;-);-)

Cheers. Gary.



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 Posted: Sun Sep 28th, 2014 03:52 pm
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toto
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Hi Max,

Excellent result. Very tranquil looking, it could actually send you to sleep. Does any work actually get done by these workers of yours :mutley

Fantastic result.

Toto

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 Posted: Sun Sep 28th, 2014 04:00 pm
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, guys.

No daytime running, I'm afraid.  Shifts start at midnight; shunting ready for the day shift.

All will be revealed . . .



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 Posted: Sun Sep 28th, 2014 10:44 pm
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col.stephens
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Very nice Max.  Are you going to have a red LED to represent Mars?

Terry

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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 12:42 am
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, Terry.  You know, that did occur to me - after I'd nailed the backs on.  :mutley



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 01:04 am
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Brossard
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You are a bleedin' genius.  Cracking work and innovative with it.  :doublethumb

John



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 01:29 am
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, John.  Most appreciated, coming from you.  :cheers



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 12:54 pm
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wow that is brill,as you will remember I also run the night shift so you can bet Iwill also pinch that idea,Max you areexcelling yourself :doublethumb
:thumbs;-):cool:



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 01:14 pm
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SRman
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I like it, Max. Well thought out and well executed to give such a lovely atmospheric feel.



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 02:28 pm
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, guys.  Go for it, Owen.  :thumbs



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 04:14 pm
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Spurno
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Absolutely brilliant Max.(Pun intended)Is there any reason you didn't use actual star formations?



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 05:21 pm
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, Alan.

Considering that the layout is based somewhere fictitious in the US, I thought that it was a bit pointless .

When I finally get around to making the movie, it should suffice for effect.



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 Posted: Mon Sep 29th, 2014 11:54 pm
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Good one Max.:Happy



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 Posted: Tue Sep 30th, 2014 12:48 am
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MaxSouthOz
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Thanks, Reg.



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