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Static grass - Grass & Ground Cover - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sun Oct 10th, 2021 10:13 am
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Chubber
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Herewith a small essay into the static grass game with different mixtures applied with my homemade applicator.



Not the prettiest of tools but I ordered the wrong size ion generator so I had to screw it to the side. It's a fearsome thing and draws a 3/4in spark when connected to the 12v power unit, smaller when switched to the internal 9v battery.



In a departure from the norm, the outer mesh is not soldered to the output lead, rather the lead passes through a copper disc where it's securedby a screw terminal. This allows me to remove the container and swap it for a smaller one relatively easily.



Now it's time to get on with some more work. The 12in/1ft railway is keeping me very busy, Workshops tomorrow desperately trying to get the bought-in carriages adapted to service the Polar Express event with sleeping accommodation for the `actors` and a generator power car, fuelledby LPG to power lights and catering gear. Then Buckfast box Thursday, training a new chap at Staverton crossing box on Friday, back to Bucks on Saturday. I shall have arms like a gorilla soon!

Keep safe

Doug



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 Posted: Sun Oct 10th, 2021 05:32 pm
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Petermac
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Wow Doug - you sound busy with the "real thing", never mind modelling one. :shock:

From your comment " training a new chap at Staverton box on Friday", do I take it you now get to wear a proper hat ?   How's all your teaining going ?

Now, enough of the 1:1 version, you can't simply pop comments on here about your static grass applicator without going into all the nitty-gritty of "how I saved enough to buy antother bottle of RLW" ............

I need to know more - warts and all.  In the very near future, I'll need to sow some grass and I'd like to know how I can get it to stand up for the price of a couple of vintage Green Shield stamps ..............

(It being Sunday, I've just had a very stiff rum and coke, the rum presented by my son who visited us last week - nearly 2 years since I'd seen him -  and wow, it's taken me about 10 minutes to correct all the typos in this post so I may have to lie down in a darkened room for a while ..................)



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 Posted: Sun Oct 10th, 2021 05:43 pm
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Barchester
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Petermac wrote: Wow Doug - you sound busy with the "real thing", never mind modelling one. :shock:

From your comment " training a new chap at Staverton box on Friday", do I take it you now get to wear a proper hat ?   How's all your teaining going ?

Now, enough of the 1:1 version, you can't simply pop comments on here about your static grass applicator without going into all the nitty-gritty of "how I saved enough to buy antother bottle of RLW" ............

I need to know more - warts and all.  In the very near future, I'll need to sow some grass and I'd like to know how I can get it to stand up for the price of a couple of vintage Green Shield stamps ..............

(It being Sunday, I've just had a very stiff rum and coke, the rum presented by my son who visited us last week - nearly 2 years since I'd seen him -  and wow, it's taken me about 10 minutes to correct all the typos in this post so I may have to lie down in a darkened room for a while ..................)


You beat me to it Peter, I would be interested in a blow by blow  'how to' as well.
 Oh and your corrections. . . You missed a couple  :mutley

Cheers

Matt



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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2021 05:21 am
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Colin W
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Petermac wrote:
I need to know more - warts and all.  In the very near future, I'll need to sow some grass and I'd like to know how I can get it to stand up for the price of a couple of vintage Green Shield stamps ..............


Peter,
I made do with a genuine bon marché effort from my workbench.

Went to "Arthur Daley's" near Flinders St Station, bought a $6 electrical fly-swat which provided me with the electrics fed by 2 * 1.5v AA Batteries and the handle structure. The swat mesh in the form of a tennis racquet head was surplus to requirements and was cut away from the handle revealing the two wires.

Applied one wire from the swat handle to a cheap metal tea strainer with a coarse mesh which had been inserted into the end of the handle, the other wire gets an insulated extension lead and a crocodile clip soldered on and this is used to attach to the layout ground pin (a nail knocked into the wet glue area being "grassed").



I can generate a spark of about 6-8mm or about a third of Chubber's Pro machine but this still equates to many kV # and is more than enough for small jobs and areas, it handles fibres up to about 6mm. Remember to earth out the strainer when finished or you get quite some belt. The high power one might be an issue for anyone with a dicky heart as it could be giving 30+kV potential.

I found that hovering the device over the surface after application helped to get fibres standing up nicely. Some grass applied to embankments with this $9 device was shown in the POTM Feb 21.

Colin

# conductivity of totally dry air is 3kV/mm but moisture lowers this value. So if a spark will arc across a gap of 10mm dry air that's 30kV. (probably nearer 300mV in the UK though! :twisted:). Given how low the humidity is here most of the time, I probably benefit from having a higher voltage because of low leakage.

Anyone who lived in a US apartment in the North East back in the 1970s (pre-oil shock) when they were heated to 80+F and the air was bone dry will remember the mega-shock you could get from walking on nylon carpets then touching the door handle! I could regularly get 1cm long sparks, you quickly learnt to carry a key to make the short!



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 Posted: Sat Oct 16th, 2021 11:47 pm
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SRman
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Brilliant.

I'll have to remember to drop into Arthur Daley's next time I'm in the city.



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 Posted: Sun Oct 17th, 2021 12:08 am
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Colin W
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SRman wrote: Brilliant.I'll have to remember to drop into Arthur Daley's next time I'm in the city.
I got mine 2 or 3 years ago now so hopefully they still carry them.

Buy 2, use 1 for zapping flies, mozzies etc., very satisfying and much better than aerosol spray

Then on to Daiso for the $2.80 tea strainer!



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 Posted: Sun Oct 17th, 2021 01:21 am
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SRman
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Well, it looks like we'll be able to travel to the city from midnight on Thursday next week, from the announcements made today. However, retail stores still won't be allowed to open yet. I'd guess Arthur Daley counts as a retail store. 

:mutley :mutley :mutley



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 Posted: Sun Oct 17th, 2021 12:22 pm
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Barchester
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SRman wrote: Well, it looks like we'll be able to travel to the city from midnight on Thursday next week, from the announcements made today. However, retail stores still won't be allowed to open yet. I'd guess Arthur Daley counts as a retail store. 

:mutley :mutley :mutley


Essential supplies innit Guv ! Good old Arthur wouldn't let a little thing like Regs get in the way of a good sale, mind you, You COULD come away with a large supply of things you never knew you really needed !!  :mutley



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