Mar 17, 2013
So, here we got some benchwork built this weekend...
And here is the basic mainline plan. Elevations are in purple, main is green with radii in green, staging in red...... Hopefully all of the details will fill in well. Got to put the ideas in my head down on paper. The only 18 in rad is on the inside curve of the first pic, as it climbs around inside the 20 in that descends to go behind and off to the lower level staging. That will be at the front of the lower level for ease of access.
Actually found some time this weekend to put in some sub-roadbed for the layout expansion! Sure was a nice change seeing as last weekend turned into working on busted sewer lines all the way til Wed.
This pic is the turn around, 18" ascending to the canyon and 22" descending to the runway to hidden staging.
Then here the runway emerges from its hiding and pops over to a "hidden" siding for one staged train. More staging around the corner. Then the upper canyon line emerges and heads up on its climb to the second level. The mid level squeezes down and will stay level all the way around the room.
And here we go round the corner.
Sorry for the low res, forgot to change the setting.....must've been the fun aromas earlier this week!
Looking good from what I can see..
Have been down with a sinus cold for a couple or weeks, finally found enough energy to play with trains this last week! Then even had time to do some track laying and such this weekend. Attached the track and roadbed with latex caulk in a light brown color. First time using radius gauges and sure wish I had tried them before!
The track is ME55.
Also added feeders drops so they will already be set and soldered rails together. Testing soon after I install a buss wire and hook these up.
Then it was time to backdate some wooden boxcars. The NP didn't have a Monad on these in the 20's.
Feels good to have the energy to railroad again.
Track laying progresses.....
Yes, the old yard full of awful looking and poorly functioning track is all gone!!
Making it all new. Not much of the salvaged old empire will remain?
All the track is being upgraded to ME55 and switches. Going to start on Fast Tracks stuff, maybe tomorrow. The scenery is being kept intact. Even the majority of the right of way is going to be the same. I've been collecting track and such for about three years now while practicing with the old layout. The grandkids are looking forward to hearing the locos run again as much as I am, or more!
Oh, I forgot to add this general sketch of the yard area. The RH on the right is the roundhouse lead. Tracks are labelled, P=passenger station, M=mainline, (in place,) then yard tracks. The branch going up to the second level is next to the RH lead, which will have coal, water and oil service on it. On the left it is deceptive, as there will be a drill track off 1 track, which can be seen if you look close and don't get as confused as I can get!
It was a productive weekend for me here. Had/made the time to work and I took so many pics of my track laying progress this weekend that I figured the best thing would be to create a you tube slide show. I started by building the supports and hidden staging yard platform in the back corner. Then I laid down the mainline cork and put in the flextrack. The only real challenges were where I had to support a piece over the staging area, a cantilever did that. And where I had to tear into the old scenery and join up the new to the old.
Yes, I like to have a long mainline winding through the terrain, fascinating to watch the trains worm through!
It all looks so simple and quick. How long did it take in real time, to make those track changes?
I put in about 8 hours over the weekend. The only thing precut were the straight plywood sub-base parts.
I now have a pile of used code 70 - 100 switches in #4 and #6 sizesto clean up and sell. Alng with some flex track. I couldn't believe the difference in appearance until I sat a Shinohara code 70 #6 next to a ME 55 #6. Wow!
I had bought several ME55 switches, but then got to figuring costs and such. Saw MC's kids building switches and figured if they could I had better be able to!
Which one is the me and which is the shinohara?
The top on is the ME. The flex above it is also. If you look close you will see that even the spike heads are offset, just like in real life wood ties.
Yesterday and today was busy getting the rest of the mainline put together! Then doing test runs with DC locos and boxcars, forwards and backwards. Had a small golden spike ceremony with a couple of the crew and a hobo/drifter that hung around the camps and both mooched and helped out!
And so now it is all running with DCC, and the NPBH is back in business!
Should have had some yellow push pins to represent gold spikes...
Those will come when I do the actual "official" golden spike ceremony!
And this was a productive weekend! Built a total of four #6 switches using the Fast Tracks jig. It is way easier than I thought it would be! So here's a few proof pics followed by a short vid of the first train to use the switch!
Had to do a bit of fine tuning prior to installation and after. Which I fully expected for my first one, but it was essentially problem free compared to the imaginary issues I thought that there would be! The frog is isolated but not juiced yet since I have yet to work out exactly how I am going to do that. I have mini DPDT's but don't want them near the switches. Still pondering the options. Simplest is bestest!
So here's video proof!
Now your on your way to get some more turnouts built. Here is a tip that will help and add some speed to your building. The first thing I do when getting ready to make them is "tin the bottom of the rail and PC ties". I use ME rail and tin the full length of several rail. I also use a liquid rosin flux that I wipe on the rail first and then the solder will flow easily down the full length. Now when you start soldering them up, all you need to do is touch the soldering iron at the PC-Rail joint and it will reflow the solder.
That short video is awesome.
Thanks Rodsup! It is a great idea there! It has surely been a lot of fun.