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Jeff's (SRman) work bench and projects - On Members Workbenches. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sat May 13th, 2017 04:19 am
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SRman
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Yet another rebuilt Merchant Navy has finally been converted to DCC. Like the other recent ones, I have used a TCS M1 decoder hard-wired in. This time, it's my last unfitted Hornby MN, 35024, East Asiatic Company. The conversion went smoothly, since I had so much practice with the previous ones, although just to be really annoying, I tested it, put it all back together, tested again and one side's connecting rod and expansion link dropped off; the retaining screw had gone missing. I couldn't find the missing screw, but I knew that 12BA screws fit the thread, so shortened one to fit. It doesn't look very good in bare brass (I'll blacken it later), but it works.

Here are my, by now, usual portraits of 35024 in service.







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 Posted: Sat May 13th, 2017 06:54 am
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Ed
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Looks great Jeff, bet the screw will turn up in a couple of weeks when your not looking for it :mutley


Ed



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 Posted: Sat May 13th, 2017 07:40 am
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Hi Jeff.  Looking for a missing screw? When I lose one I usually find it by walking around bare footed, then I can locate it.   All the best. Kevin

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 Posted: Thu May 18th, 2017 12:18 pm
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SRman
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Yes, that's often the case, Kevin, but these screws are so small they probably wouldn't even register on the pain Richter scale at all! 
:mutley

There is another new arrival at Newton Broadway, bought at a price I couldn't resist. Up until recently, I had no possible excuse for buying the Heljan class 05 diesel shunter. With my recent interest in industrial locomotives, plus the attractive pricing, I purchased Heljan's Cider Queen version of the Hunslet 05. The Bulmers livery sits very nicely, although perhaps not quite in line with my 'generic' industrial user ideas.

The Hunslet was fitted with Bachmann's latest 6-pin decoder, 36-568, which is really a re-badged Zimo decoder, and I am very impressed with it too. It was a tight fit in the space, and I even shortened the pins slightly to make it fit more snugly.

I wasn't going to fit the nameplates, but decided that Heljan have also done a nice job with those, so they are now on the model.

In the meantime, I have also tweaked my fictional livery on the Hornby Sentinel diesel, with a few touch-ups of the blue, plus painting the steps and their recesses black, and adding a light grey cab roof. I still intend to add LNER style white/black/white lining along the cab sides and side panels.

Anyway, here are a few photos to illustrate the new addition and the various features I have mentioned.





[highlight= rgb(255, 255, 255);]




The class 73 visible in the earlier photos is a Dapol model, which I have never been entirely satisfied with. Chief dissatisfactions were the colour (which I can't do much about without a complete repaint) and the cab lights being permanently on; Dapol's "solution" for the cab lights was to stick a bit of tape over the terminals, leaving them permanently off. They seem to think that was a perfectly reasonable "fix" for their shoddy design. 

Anyway, I followed a conversion done by someone on RMweb (for which many thanks are owed), which involved cutting the tracks on the PCB to R1 and between R1 and R2 (clearly marked on the board). Then, two wires had to be soldered between the correct pins and the two resistors, R1 and R2, allowing the cab lights to be controlled individually from the Aux 1 and Aux 2 functions.

To test my wiring, I removed the expensive sound decoder (ESU) and put a TCS decoder on - if I blew that up TCS would replace it under their goof-proof warranty conditions! Well, it all worked perfectly, with cab light at the #1 end turning on on F1, and #2 end on F2. 

Plugging the LokSound decoder (with Legomanbiffo sound) back in, the cab lights worked on F19 and F20.

While I had the soldering iron out, I also replaced the temporary speaker setup (the standard 23mm round one) with a bass enhanced rectangular speaker wired in parallel with a sugar cube speaker (both being of 8 ohm impedance). The sound is somewhat better than it was.

I put it all back together, then realised I had left the grey plastic 'shield' that stops one seeing the pcb under the central electrical compartment grilles, so off came the body again (four screws)!

Feeling pleased with my efforts and thumbing nose at Dapol for their poor customer relations and total lack of effort.



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 Posted: Fri May 19th, 2017 01:25 pm
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SRman
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A small improvement to the Hornby Sentinel: I have added some lining to relieve the plain blue panels a bit.






​Next jobs: a coat of varnish and the addition of some etched plates, when they arrive, then a little weathering.



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 Posted: Mon May 22nd, 2017 12:44 pm
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SRman
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An unplanned purchase has added one more steam locomotive to the industrials: someone had a Hornby J94 in a lined maroon livery for $AUS50 at a recent BRMA meeting (approximately £20 - 22). While my preference would be for the newer DJM model, I was vacillating about whether to buy this or not. My wife offered to pay half to persuade me to buy it, so Harry now graces the line-up of colourful industrial locomotives. It caused me to renumber a couple of existing locomotives to keep the industrial numbering in an approximate date order of hen they might have been purchased by my mythical private owner. The Harry name will eventually be replaced with something different - I'll reveal a little more of my naming theme when the Narrow Planet nameplates arrive for some of the earlier locomotives.

Initially I tried a DCC Concepts small decoder (S4SAX) but that was still too large and would have required quite a chunk of the cast weight to be removed. Instead, I did a decoder swap with Hornby Arthur 30777, Sir Lamiel, putting a DCC Concepts Zen Nano direct plug-in decoder, and recovering the TCS M1P decoder, which, with its 8-pin plug cut off, was hard-wired to the J94, with only a very small hollow milled out of the weight to allow the wires to pass under it. I had some difficulty getting the cab and rear bunker to sit properly, with a resultant gap along the rear part of the saddle tank too, but eventually I got it all to sit properly, after consulting a much earlier topic on RMweb detailing the same problem and its solution. The photos show the locomotive before I had fixed the problem properly.

Harry now bears the number 10 on its bunker, following on from the pannier tank (given the number 9). The ex-class 05 (numbered 2 out of the box) will eventually bear the number 11 and possibly be renamed from Cider Queen, while the Hornby Sentinel now bears the number 12 (it was number 10 before but didn't display that number anywhere). The necessary adjustments were made to each locomotive's decoder. The numbers used are actually Bulleid's SR yellow 'sunshine' numbers with black shading. This style seems to suit the locomotives well.








Today, there was a nice surprise in the mail too: the first of my two DJM class 71s arrived. E5003 in the later green with small yellow panels was duly run on the rollers on DC for a while. All was well, so the next phase was to pull the top off (which was very nearly disastrous for the delicate pantograph when my grip slipped and I grabbed the falling loco right across the panto well!) and fit the ESU LokSound decoder that has been sitting in a box for some time awaiting the arrival of this model. I had already purchased the sounds from legomanbiffo and blown them onto the decoder.

I used the same speaker setup as I used on the Dapol class 73 a few days ago; that is, a bass enhanced speaker and a sugar cube speaker, both of 8 ohm impedance, were soldered in parallel to the solder pads on the PCB. The sound is good, without any tweaking done, although I may still experiment further.

As others have pointed out in the relevant class 71 topic, the DJM model really needs a decoder with five functions, whereas the LokSound only has four, although there are ways of getting the logical function outputs to do the job, with a little soldering of components. I don't intend to do this at this stage. I can't help thinking that because the marker lights were rarely used, I would prefer to use the aux outputs for those to operate the headcodes instead. I will work on this idea.

The third rail shoes were fitted with a glue somewhat less irreversible than cyanoacrylates, just in case I had to move them up for clearances. As it is, they worked fine where they are, so no adjustments are required. I have not, as yet, tried adding the lifting lugs.

E5003 is seen here on a short engineers train of Dogfish, Sealions and a Shark.






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