N Scale T-Trak

billmtx Oct 28, 2010

  1. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    Well, I had to semi bypass the power routing on one turnout, no idea why one was fine and the other wasn’t, but it is all running! But as soon as I grabbed the iPad to shoot a video the throttle ran out of batteries, lol. So they are on the charger now.

    The little indicator is actually quite useful to see if polarity is correct on main before you start running, and if not, I just wave the trolley an inch or two above one of the reed switches to flip it.
     
  2. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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  3. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    Good to hear it's all working now. I have been trying to get people on the Digitrax group to understand that DC can be auto switched, but for some reason no one there wants to hear about your unit or the Circuitron AR1's abilities to auto switch DC. Oh well, their loss...
     
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  4. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    If you check the description he has other modules that do things like autoreverser with soft start, or auto reverser with auto station stops as well. Since I know you have some trolley/ streetcars I thought you might find them interesting. Especially now that we know a: they work on 12v & b: how easy installing the reed switches in track is.
     
  5. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    Is there a website or just the Ebay store?
     
  6. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    If there is it is probably in French, I didn’t look for one to be honest.
     
  7. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    OK so not much of an update but I was able to get my modules stained last night, and tonight I am going to try to distress them a bit to match the other modules.
     
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  8. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    Progress is progress brother!
    At least you can run a train. Still waiting for my CMR modules to ship.

    I’m still fooling with the trolley tracks to make sure it is as bullet-proof as possible before I start burying it. I reversed the direction of the loops for two reasons,
    1: they won’t ever pick the points when set to diverging, but would 1/50 times with lighter rear truck when straight entry on the fwd Tomix chassis PCC.

    2: it puts the trolley doors to the inside of the park, and to the outside of town square so passengers don’t have to disembark and then cross tracks.

    Once I can get it to run an hour with no issues, track stalls, etc (very close now) then I will consider it good enough to proceed to next step.
     
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  9. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    So I have been working on both my tram and my station modules. I got quite a bit on the dram done, but I’m saving that for the tram thread, here is a couple pics of my modules, and my 2019 Operation North Pole train.

    747CBBAA-2E21-4534-922B-262A57E6B199.jpeg CBC81493-F94F-4D87-B5EB-731D275D7F2D.jpeg C3F7C45A-990D-4CB2-A6D8-67ACD77E3ECB.jpeg EA9BF4DC-59BF-42BB-91D1-C0E8C59A64FE.jpeg CA671CB0-0758-46C2-A1EB-874F014F4847.jpeg
     
  10. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    Looking good!

    here’s current status on San Medina. Ballasting done and trolley buried in road, and I picked a color I like for asphalt and sealed the spackling in. terrain formed for park and painted it shades of dirt color.

    A3874BD8-2406-4ECB-B777-E36FD6064D81.jpeg
     
  11. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    I had some help painting the dirt today.

    3F898EC1-3D8A-46B9-BDD5-D1C4E8D635F8.jpeg


    F6818F6F-5D64-43C3-868D-270F0028C773.jpeg
     
  12. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    She even gave up My Little Pony to help you! That’s awesome!
     
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  13. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    Tonight’s update... it’s been busy at my place with the modules, and Tram layout. Since the is the T-Trak thread we are going to talk T-Trak. I distressed the front to back modules and installed the track. The wiring is also all done. So the wiring here is a bit unique, but it will work great in the end. This is also a 3 module set, they will rarely if ever be used as singles, but they can be used without the center triple module, just like my station modules can. The front to backs have a port for a Power Pole socket but the triple doesn’t. So to power the tracks in the triple I built some armored cables to plug the center into a tap off the red and yellow lines. The red line is powered by the left module, and the yellow track is powered by the right module. The plugs underneath are color coded as well to prevent a mix up, and too short to reach if you put the modules in backwards as well.

    I also isolated the curved pieces of track as a safety feature. If the switch is thrown, and there is no module attached to the end, there will be no power to continue. The curves tracks get their power from whatever is connected to them. Easy peasy.

    All my modules (well all but the finished one) got a slightly larger hole where the leveling feet go so I can access them with a Allen wrench easier. I also countersunk the hole to look better. I think that’s everything, enjoy the pics.


    Here are the modules right side up.
    F4C81545-7FA3-4ED2-8748-EECCF8791EA2.jpeg

    Here is the business end... or bottom... er... up side down. You can see the wiring work so far. I still need to do something with the turnout wiring, I will figure that out later.
    EB61A354-A92A-4473-8B86-9412A9109593.jpeg

    And the last 2 pics show a better view of the armored cables off each module. 3C664126-211A-4F06-BD7F-E720E5665A63.jpeg 3AA39B9F-65D5-435D-B1ED-E0FDB2F3D4AE.jpeg


    One more pic... here is the cable before I installed it.
    4ADD7425-39AD-442C-9D31-A24A7F741D6A.jpeg
     
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  14. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    just watched the video again, and I noticed something that looked out of place. The green light was too bright! It just about lit up the entire station when pointed that direction. Maybe another resistor to dim it down a bit...
     
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  15. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    So I took the armored cables a bit farther than just the units between the modules. This time I rebuilt the harness with the nylon webbing. It is not as flexible as it was but now I don’t have to worry about getting a damaged wire like before. I recorded some footage of me building the harness, or at least one small piece of it, I will edit it here soon and post it for everyone. For now, enjoy.

    06C03646-7C1F-42F0-ACD8-C2692ADB8B3D.jpeg 59368E8A-986A-46EC-B069-E804577F160A.jpeg 63129C13-A6BD-4552-9A27-D0E1FF7BE445.jpeg
     
  16. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    I agree 112%.

    I initially went with the minimum needed safe value of 150ohms to make sure it lit up even when the batteries are run down. But that wasn’t the right choice from a brightness standpoint.
    next time I am under the module (ie when I do the last two servos) I’ll add another 150-200 ohm resistor in line and see how bright it is at 300-350 ohms total. That should cut the current in half and brightness by about 75%.

    like what you are doing with the Andersons and sheathing.
    I looked at doing some a couple weeks ago also but the way they are sold by color in 10s or in either you have to do and buy a bunch at once ( ie 10x red 10x yellow 10x brown 30x black) ... or it makes no sense to make em.
    What are you using, 16ga red black zip wire?
    Couldn’t find any last time I was out ( didn’t want to go to stereo shop as I now pay retail for wiring) so I went with Phillips 16ga speaker wire (gold positive silver negative) when I was wiring up the pushbuttons since it was cheap and easy to source at target for 6 bucks for 50 ft.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  17. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    I dunno what I was expecting, but my 16” CMR radius corners arrived, and rather than being 16” x16”, ie same as my deep module... they are 18.25 x18.25, which means they don’t fit the 13.75 and 15” radius unitrack I was planning on running on them.

    trying to decide if I want to find someone with a table saw to chop an inch off each to make them into true 16” deep and wide corners, which will mean losing all three mounts, or if I want to make them stick out an extra couple inches.

    or. Instead of it being quick n easy with unitrack, I might have to use flex track.

    Dunno what to do.
    I’m pretty disappointed, if the overall dimensions had been there, I’d have asked about a true 16” that could use 13.75 and 15” radius. They are really nice just sized wrong for what I was wanting. And there is no unitrack that actually seems to fit that radius.

    the 15 fits the inner line it seems. Hmm.

    6831A391-94CB-4E49-8A60-9BE2719E41D0.jpeg
     
  18. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    The problem with changing the dimensions is they will no longer fit universally. Unless you made a makeup module that makes up the odd distance.

    what radii we’re the modules supposed to use?
     
  19. Onizukachan

    Onizukachan TrainBoard Supporter

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    No idea... it isn’t defined. None of the dimensions are/were.
    Currently they are 18.25 wide, 18.25 deep, and with the outer edge obviously being 18.25 radius. (About 1.5 inch in form of track for the scenery border), so already an odd size. If used singly.
    I screwed up by assuming that they were a size that made sense based on what radius Kato actually comes in.



    I’m starting to think it might be easier to cut them along the radius. And build my own fronts and leg supports...
    I could install the track with corner and two straights edges lined up with my 16” (excess material to outside of table) and then if I want I can trim back the radius and get rid of that extra 2 inches... though it means completely re-engineering the entire radiused front of the module.

    or I can resign myself to always needing two tables back to back and always having to use all 4 tables for a simple oval, and just use them the way they are designed... if I can figure out what short section size would work to get the correct 1mm overhang and wind up with the correct radius outer while keeping. 33mm spacing when you are going up one size from 15.

    In the end I guess them’s the breaks when you run stuff like Shinkansen, ac12s and close coupled with working diaphragm ABA sets. 11” radius is Dead mans curve for everything but my GS4.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2021 at 9:10 AM
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  20. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    My TGVs can make the radii on my end cap modules just fine, inner or outer and they are not 16”. I believe they are 348 and 315mm. I am not close coupled or linked diaphragm tho. If you check out my YouTube channel you can see my ICE train running on my modules... Rebel n Trains is the channel name.
     
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