LAYOUT PARTY 2022-2023 Fifteenth Annual International Winter Layout Party

ppuinn Dec 17, 2022

  1. Tim Holmes

    Tim Holmes TrainBoard Member

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    Continuing

    These are pics of various buildings that I have dropped

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    Last night, I found a beautiful model of an Ethanol plant that I will be putting in someplace --


    20230108173352_1.jpg This is an example of the Coal Hopper liveries and loads that i have been working on -- I have currently 2 variants of the hopper, and will be constructing more -- it takes some time to build them b/c each livery has a different number so each file must be edited in gimp or other graphics editor - -lotta guys use paint -- im more familiar with gimp

    We also now have an operations channel on the rolling line discord server, so we are trying to build a community there of operators

    Have a great day -- please feel free to ask questions either in DM or here on the board

    TIM
     
  2. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    Worked more on the 'Lever Frame' the last couple days and hope to maybe printing my last version today or tomorrow. If it all woks it will do exactly the same thing .......

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    ... the switch box (on the left) does in the image above. That is it will toggle the 'Servo Controller' (middle) where it will throw the servo and turnout one way or the other. Two years ago you could get all the components above to throw a turnout for about $6. I think they still are under $10. The wiring isn't complicated to do this and you can have turnout control without needing a computer, Arduino, or any other parts and it is easy to set up and control the amount of throw on the turnout's throwbar as shown ( HERE ).

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    Been getting more cork down also...

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    I read a number of posts on laying track and watched a number of videos and if you are starting I'd suggest doing the same. I kept going back to Joe's videos on track laying on his Sayrehurst Secondary layout. You can find one of his videos that I used ( HERE ) along with links to others.

    I also have watched a number of his other videos and always enjoy his quick and practical approach to the ways he tackles things. At 79 I'm not sure how long I'll be doing this so I've looked for ideas that are practical and give fairly quick results. He puts down track pretty fast and that was high on my wants as I'd like to put down quite a bit as fast as is practical having a 6 foot by 24 foot area that I can work with. The following pretty much follows his procedures. I'm not going to go into a lot of detail myself as you can find that watching his fine videos.

    I'm using Micro Engineering code 55 track and so is Joe so that was another reason I'm using his videos as a guide. He uses ME turnouts where I'll be using turnouts I've built myself. If you are using ME rail you might also find the video ( HERE ) helpful. The tool used in that video and what Joe uses is very hard to find the last time I looked. I found one in someone's old stock in Canada and bought it but since have designed basically the same item that you can 3D print and you can find the print files ( HERE ).

    I also have more on laying the cork and track on my site ( HERE ) from when I build my test track.

    If you came into the build here you can find the main index for the build ( HERE ).

    Sumner
     
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  3. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    Having spent quite a bit of time on this project, I am finally seeing some concrete results. I have the automatic point to point control system working reliably on the test set up of my Ntrak / AsiaNrail module. Lots of learning curve on this one. I had wanted to have it use both sidings at the station but realized that I had not wired these turnouts as power routing so for now it's just point to point with one train. In an actual setup the line will be up to 25 feet long. Same setup can be used on the Ntrak mountain line.


    This is the remote end with a movable sensor set. This one goes across the track and will be painted to blend in better.

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    This is at the station end with sensors under the track in reflective mode.

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    And in action on Youtube.
     
  4. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    VinceP---It's NEVER too late! You are welcome to join this Party at any time.
     
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  5. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Since Thursday 1/12, I practiced taking better pics with my iPhone camera, and made progress on refurbishing trees and upgrading several scenes on my layout.

    Pics of the Pekin residential area Before and After refurbishing:
    Before refurbishing: Note worn/drab/sagging lichen trees, the crowded houses, unpainted Homasote for roads, and damaged cardboard mock-up of the one of the businesses on Caroline Street (
    After refurbishing: Trees around the cemetery were cleaned up but I decided not to expand the cemetery into the field off-frame to the right side of this pic.
    For Henrietta Street: Removed an overcrowding house, refurbished trees, upgraded the road, contoured the ground around the houses to hide the base of the ceramic houses.
    For State Street and Catherine Street: refurbished trees, upgraded the road, contoured the ground around the houses to hide the base of the ceramic houses.
    For Caroline Street: Refurbished trees, upgraded the road, removed damaged business mock-up, still have to install the grade crossing and crossbucks details. Several of the labels on the fascia in this picture are part of goals to be worked on later in the Layout Party, if time allows.
     
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  6. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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  7. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Refurbished the trees in Mackinaw Woods. I still have to upgrade the tree flats against the backdrop/skyboard.
    I deliberately left the helix visible from the aisle, so operators can check on the progress of their trains in the helix.

    Some of the wires to Tortoises, track feeders, dwarf signals for turnout position indication, and signal bridges and masts for train control on the upper deck have fallen out of the cup hooks holding them and need to be tucked back in...a five to ten minute job (hopefully). But I'm also going to spend a lot longer tracing and adding labels to some dwarf signals I added last summer)
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2023
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  8. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Refurbished the trees near the businesses near the Adams Street viaduct (views look north from the main aisle
    The Adams Street Businesses are on the upper deck, which is at 65" elevation. This view is looking at the businesses from the east from a 2'x4' pop up area accessed by a 62" high nod-under. Operators doing switching from this access area stand on a 12" high step-up bench, so the upper deck is functionally at a 53 inch height.
    Refurbished the trees near the Adams Street Viaduct which passes over the CNW and BN lines as they enter the top of the Peoria Helix at 65" elevation. Operators wishing to monitor the progress of their trains in the Peoria helix can use a step stool to see into the Helix.
    This pic shows the operator's view into the Peoria Helix. The lowest track (center of bottom edge of the pic) is at 48" elevation and is the lower exit/entrance of the helix. The next track is at 52 inches and bypasses the helix. The 3rd track (by the upside down mounted Tortoise) is at 60" elevation and enters on the 4th helix loop from the bottom and climbs up the helix. The top track at the left edge of the pic is the start of the 6th loop. There is an exit at a little over 64 inches 1/4 of a loop later, and another at just under 65 inches 1/2 way around the 6th loop, and the exits to the BN and CNW tracks under the viaduct are at 65" elevation.

    In the picture of the Businesses from the access area, the top tracks visible on the distant wall on the far side of the aisle are at 64.5 inches and one of those tracks can be seen near the right edge in this picture entering the helix at just under 65 inches. The 2nd highest tracks in the previous picture are at 60 inches and enter the helix on the 4th loop to descend 1.5 loops to exit at 53 inches elevation.
    Like the Pekin Helix, the fascia labels and other signage around the Peoria Helix are to be upgraded later in the Layout Party, if time permits.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2023
  9. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    I also have the following in my layout build on ( HERE ) with a few more pictures and details vs. what I'm posting here.

    Finishing up laying the cork and moving on to sanding it down to get rid the of the flashing on the shoulders and any other imperfections.

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    In the past on the test track I used the top two tools and the sandpaper to take care of the rough cork shoulders, especially the one on the one side of the cork after you separate them. I use a sharp utility knife at an angle on a flat piece of plywood I use as a temporary work surface. to separate1 the cork into two pieces. I got out a rasp I've had forever and gave it a try and...

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    ….. I found it much faster and easier to use.

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    After doing the small area one night I did all the rest of the staging and the hidden tracks to the coal mine in probably 30 minutes the next day. I found that I could also use it on the top of the cork to level it out also. I probably could of moved on without using the sandpaper but went over the area very quickly with it.

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    When using the rasp and sandpaper check for any high spots where the cork pieces meet, especially the but joint on the ends and where you have added cork for the turnouts. This is very similar to doing body work on a car where you feel for imperfections. Lay you palm flat on the surface and run your finger tips along the cork surface (no across it) feeling for imperfections. I showed my bare hand above but you can actually feel the surface better with a light pair of gloves like in the next picture. The hand can feel imperfections of a few thousands of an inch doing this.

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    As I mention in the image above prepping the staging and hidden coal yard tracks followed by spackling it went much faster than I thought it would. I did it all in under 3 hours but was beat at the end of it. I'll cover the spackling on the next page.

    If you came into the build here you can find the main index for the build ( HERE ).

    Sumner
     
  10. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Refurbished trees behind Haggarty Steel and near Commercial Solvents:
    Refurbished Trees in the middle of the peninsula:
    Right side view of peninsula base
    Trees refurbished near J&L Structural Steel and Allied Iron and Steel Scrap near right side end of Peninsula:
    Trees refurbished near I Bork and Sons Scrap Yard and Peoria Sanitary and Sewer Txt Plant:
    Trees refurbished on I Bork and Sons Scrap Yard on left side of Peninsula:

    Refurbished trees behind IBS scrap yard on left side of base of peninsula near Peoria Helix:
     
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  11. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    Got the cork prepped and spackled in the staging area.

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    A little more on my build on ( HERE ).

    If you came into the build here you can find the main index for the build ( HERE ).

    Sumner
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2023
  12. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    Having completed the work on the point to point control for modular layouts, I returned my attention to the home layout. After having done lots of running through the new helix, I was comfortable enough with it to start to install the tempered hard board wrap on it. This was needed before any scenery could get started on the east end. Here is what it looks like this afternoon with it being held in place with clamps while the wood glue dries. I also shot some staples along the edges. There will be fascia strips continuing from the existing parts of the layout and that should give it a finished look after painting. I decided to add a couple of window holes in the area that will be off scene to keep track of train progress in the helix.

    TBWMA23Jan23c.jpg
     
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  13. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    Looks good
     
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  14. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Brad,
    The outside cover gives the helix a nicely finished appearance, but I'm concerned that you mentioned staples and glue, but no screws to give you easier access from the outside, if you ever have problems with feeders or rail gauge in the future. Can you solder feeders or rail joiners, or cut rails and align track without removing your beautiful covering?
     
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  15. Tim Holmes

    Tim Holmes TrainBoard Member

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    This past week has been largely about working on cars and liveries, as well as running some trains.

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    A cut of cars arrived in Walsenburg from the east interchange (My offline storage) and was sorted into the appropriate classification tracks in the walsenburg yard. As a part of this, I figured out how to get a JMRI arrival track working in walsenburg as well -- which simplifies arrival and sorting procedures quite a bit

    Additionally the fleet of cars has been expanding some more -- I spent quite a bit of time this week modeling (really digitally kitbashing) a 89foot HI-Cube boxcar and creating liveries for it

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    As far as this upcoming week, I really want to work on some more cars (basic gondolas and coil steel cars) as well as actually run some trains too
     
  16. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    There will still be access to the wiring and such from the inside. The lower helix was done this way about 7 years ago and has worked out well.
     
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  17. in2tech

    in2tech TrainBoard Member

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    So been going slow on this end, and still can't find my adhesive wire clips, and other things that are with them :) When I am not looking, I will find them. Even organized the attic a bit to locate them, nope! But I did finally figure out once again how I wired my momentary switches and such for my turnouts. Had to test it, and amazing it worked.

    Tested the turnouts and switches.

    Temporary workbench is a mess, again!
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 25, 2023 at 11:21 PM
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  18. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    In2Tech said: Sorry the images are sideways!

    You may already know this and just haven't had a chance to edit them yet, but just in case (and for anyone else who wants to change sideways pictures in their own posts) ...
    If they are stored in RailImages here on TrainBoard, you can edit your pics by clicking on the picture in RailImages, Scroll over the orange Media Tools to get a dropdown list of edit actions and rotate to proper orientation, then click Save Media button below the picture. You then need to edit your post: First click the Refresh button (circular arrow in upper left of computer screen [I'm not sure if this editing can be done on your phone]). Then, click Edit below your signature; in the Edit window, delete the appropriate picture; insert the correctly oriented picture; and save edited post.

    If they are stored somewhere else, you will need to edit the picture wherever you are storing it.
     
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  19. ppuinn

    ppuinn Staff Member

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    Sheridan Road Lumber before upgrade: No structures, foamboard tree flat behind the unballasted track was painted green and added to this scene well over a decade ago but the Woodland Scenics underbrush was added last week.
    Tree flat was upgraded last week, lichen trees and grass were added behind the track; the track and the lumber yard were "paved" with gray 1/4 inch gray foamboard; an open lumber storage shed will be built, eventually; but for now a foamboard footprint of the shed marks where the building will be.

    Northmoor Road Crossing before upgrade: Painted tree flat with no underbrush to simulate trees (other end of the Sheridan Road Lumber tree flat), lichen trees were in sad shape, no crossing flashers, unfinished road.
    Northmoor Road Crossing after upgrade: tree flat was upgraded last week, lichen trees "re-planted" or replaced, grass refurbished, laser cut flashers by Osborn Model Kits were glued, painted, and added to the crossing.
    Northmoor Golf Course before upgrade: trees, and grass needed work, flag needed work.
    Northmoor Golf Course after upgrade looked MUCH better. The trees, brush, and grass are refurbished. The green is too blue and will be redone in the next few days.
    Northmoor Team Track before upgrade:Team track area was painted but still looked more like Homasote than a gravel covered yard. The dock was only a cardboard place holder. The Illinois Dept of Transportation Garage cardboard mock-up needed to be re-taped. The tree flats and trees behind IDOT garage needed work.
    Northmoor Team Track after upgrade: Trees and tree flats refurbished, IDOT Garage mock-up re-taped, Yard around dock was covered with gray ballast, team track dock was fashioned from foam board, but is still too short and will be modified next week.
    Knoxville Ave Crossing before upgrade: roadway needs lane striping, black rubber panels to protect car tires crossing the rails are only painted, trees, tree flats, and grass need to be refurbished.
    Knoxville Ave Crossing upgrade temporarily on hold until I am able to smooth the plaster road surface, so I can have straight lane stripes. The black rubber panels were added and trees and tree flats have been refurbished. No pic until more is done.
     
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  20. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    Looking good there ppu
     
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