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Going large - building large layouts - Layout Design, Trackwork & Operation. - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Wed Dec 14th, 2022 11:53 pm
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Barry Miltenburg
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Latest offering from my friend Guy - late evening working heads South behind a Class 25.



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 Posted: Sun Dec 18th, 2022 05:59 pm
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Barry Miltenburg
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I have spent the day finishing the platforms at Trinity Square and adding Slaters 0414 paving slabs to the concourse area.  When its dry, I will need to use some modelling filler to smooth the joints.  The paving extends up the left hand side to the start of Platform 1, in front of the offices.



Believing that its better to mock up rather than muck up, I have produced a simple card wall with gates to frame the right hand side of the station concourse.  This will give access to the parcels office by road if required.  The entrance to the parcels office is under the canopy to the right.



Not sure about the scale of the canopy or the height but it's a start.  It might look better once the door is added.  I have found a number of pictures of this type of entrance and they are all different so I will probably do what I like best.

The main station building will be where the camera is sitting for the final picture.  It will be about 2 inches deep and be backless showing the interior ofices, booking office, canteen etc.  I have found some 1/76 table and chairs from a 3D printer on eBay for the canteen.  My book North Eastern Record gives pictures of the interior of booking offices - pleanty of wood panelling to copy!!

The overall roof mock up for the concourse area left me in two minds whether I like it.  The jury remains out.

Bashing on.........



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 Posted: Tue Dec 27th, 2022 02:01 pm
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Barry Miltenburg
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This is something that has been bothering me and drawing comments from others - the rather messy wiring that accompanies the point motor, relay and lighting cascade for the storage sidings.  There are 4 sets of these - one for each entrance and exit on Up and Down lines.  There are also reliability issues creeping in with some lights and relays not firing when they should.



As may be evident here, the incoming and outgoing wires terminate on the tag board.  The point motor and relay are then also wired to the tag board.  That makes for a lot of bits of wire and soldered joints.  At the time, it made for easy construction but I am paying for the price of that now.



With wires re-soldered directly to the point motor or relay, the tag boards have been removed and this is the result.  Only the point motor common return remains on a tag.  The cable ties have been used to make it look pretty and to keep wiring clear of the trains.  This improvement is repeated at the exit end of these (Down) sidings.



This is about 1/3rd of what came out!  I have not done the Up sidings because they remain very reliable.  I wired them first and can only assume that I got tired/bored with the ones at the front, hence the sloppy joints etc.

I have identified one issue doing all this - one or two of the relays haven't taken too kindly to being soldered multiple times and that has, undoubtedly led to some of the reliability issues.  I have a couple of spares and will swap them out if trouble continues.  In the meantime, I am happy with the overall result of a days work.

To the far right of the first picture, you can just see the surface-mounted point motors for the loco storage area in the fiddle yard and this wiring is just as bad.  I will get out to the shed before New Year and have a go at these 6 or 8 motors, shortening wires and re-routing some to avoid a messy look.  I also have an annoying problem here - some of the sidings do not isolate the stored engine although, despite many checks, I cannot find out why.  Hopefully when I re-wire this section, that problem will go away.

Bashing on..........



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 Posted: Wed Dec 28th, 2022 04:02 am
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Colin W
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Hi Barry,

I can see you're using PL13 Frog switching on your solenoids. John Dew (and others) had been convincing me of reliability issues with these, problems with the polarity switch sticking after some use.

I do not need these to do my Frog Switching on Upper Hembury (done by the CDU switching) but I did use them to help lock my switch blades in position and soften the throw because I'm using kit turnouts.

Hence I looked into this reliability issue and was told by a highly experienced modeller who has run a huge layout on the show circuit ("Shap" and Hills of the North") that his PL13 have given long and reliable service but he pops them open from time to time to keep contacts clean. In my variant of this I cleaned the sliding contacts then puffed in some graphite powder around after the cover plate had been prised off. This seems to work a treat in keeping the mechanism freely moving.
 



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 Posted: Wed Dec 28th, 2022 04:16 am
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peterm
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That's what I did until I got fed up with climbing under the board to do loads of them. Went to tortoise and never looked back.



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 Posted: Wed Dec 28th, 2022 05:23 pm
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Barry Miltenburg
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Hi Colin and Peter

The PL-13 is the weakest link in this chain, which is why I use SEEP motors everywhere else on the layout.  I only use the PL-13 on surface mount motors because thats the only place you can get at them when they start playing up.  Yes, Colin, a quick clean-up from time to time does them good.

However, having said that, they only need a clean every 6 months or so - about 100 operations or so I reckon - and even then, some have not been touched since they went in on the first Yarslow 12 years ago!!!

Tortoise is certainly a better option but when you need 121 of them.......... :shock: :shock:



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 Posted: Wed Jan 11th, 2023 11:23 am
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Barry Miltenburg
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Right - having got Xmas out of the way with trips all over the country and more than enough rain, its back to the shed.

The paving on the concourse at Trinity Square has been filled and I spent a happy hour removing filler from the paving gaps.  A rub all over with very fine Wet&Dry both removed the excess filler from the surface and gave the whole area an even tone ready for paint.

You will note that I have started the platform surfaces and, in fact, have now finished this completely.  I used 180 Grit paper this time.  The 250 Grit at Yarslow is a bit too fine - the 180 gives a more obvious "tarmac" surface and is substantially cheaper.

Not long after finishing this, I read the piece about paint and talc to make tarmac roads - Doh!

(Incidentally, the white thing on the platform is the alarm motion detector that I took down to change the battery and forgot to put back before taking the photo)



Continuing to focus on Trinity Square, I have also installed 2 Peco inspection pit kits to the running shed.  The picture above shows the first one in but unpainted and without the right hand one in place.  This is a really nice kit and includes the pit, steps and rails.  There are, however, a few snags

Retro-fitting it turned out to be a total pain.  Instructions like "cut a hole in your baseboard" may be simple to execute when you have a drawn line representing the intended track alignment, but when the track is already down, using power tools to cut a hole is a tricky operation.  Luckily though, the depth of the pit did not require any cuts into the support woodwork, only the 9mm top.

I used one whole kit per road and this needed 2 rail lengths (each is about 6 inches long) to provide the running track.  In the absence of the ability to put a rail joiner in between the 2 lengths, they recommend running a wire from a feed to both ends of the pit.  At Trinity Square, the track inside the shed can be isolated (don't forget I'm a DC dinosaur) and so I had to move the isolated joiner slightly to fit a metal rail joiner in to which a wire could be run to the end of the shed road to make a further feed.  You can see the resulting short track section in the picture above.

Once painted, the result will look good and I have ordered some 3D printed workbench accessories to have lying around.  As this is a running shed, only light work would be done here, sand topped up etc - no need for a pair of shear legs!

Bashing on....



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