NP Lester WA T-Trak Z Module Set Project

rray Feb 11, 2020

  1. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    The diamond window is really interesting...it’s quite the unique design. Is there a backstory behind it?
     
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  2. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Unfortunately, I have no info on that shed at all. Just a couple depot photos showing it in the background, but I'll post prototype photos when I go out to the garage next, all my Lester photos are on that computer.
     
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  3. bostonjim

    bostonjim TrainBoard Member

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    How did they get the speeder onto the mainline? Brute force? Jim
     
  4. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Yes, mostly by hand. Usually the rails to the shed are the same height as the track rails, and they would either have cross rails in between the mainline rails, or they would have wooden planks for the speeder wheels to roll over. Once the speeder is over the mainline rails, the operator lowers the turntable piston, which raises the speeder, then he can easily turn the car by himself.

    Those speeders not equipt with a turntable need 2-3 guys to brute force the speeder. They slide handles in for leverage, then lift and turn.



    The hard way:
     
  5. bostonjim

    bostonjim TrainBoard Member

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    Robert, you are a fountain of knowledge. Thanks for posting this. I wondered how it was done. Jim
     
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  6. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Lester speeder and shed prototypes:

    This is the only speeder photo I found, showing the Lester Track Inspection Crew in the late 1960's. Try painting that guy's plaid jacket on a Z Scale figure! I got the beanie dude by the fire barrel talking to a drunk Hobo behind the roundhouse:
    3.jpg


    Here are the double doors opened on the speeder shed. Notice that silver box. In photos where it is seen, 1980's, all the telegraph poles are gone:
    2.jpg

    Here's the shot of that interesting diamond window, again speeder shed doors opened. The depot was painted white for BN at this time, 1980's, however the speeder shed is stil NP Depot Sand colored:
    4.jpg
     
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  7. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    It's almost like someone wanted more light in the dark speeder shed, so they cut in an old window!:D
     
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  8. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Today I am starting on the adjacent module to the roundhouse / depot module. I got the module assembled over the winter so I built another 12v accessory polarity protection bus board. Some of you probably don't know what that is or why I want it.

    "The Brain" tells you White is positive and Black is negative for the T-Track Z 12V accessory power, but "The Hands" sometimes connect everything backwards. It happens. Sometimes accompanied with a little smoke release from small black specs on expensive accessory electronic boards.

    So I wanted to avoid that scenario, and I had previously decided on DC Polarity Protection on my modules, but I did not explain them well.

    Here are the schematics for polarity protection:
    PLUS MINUS.jpg MINUS PLUS.jpg

    Notice that the input polarity is different for each schematic, but the bridge rectifies the output so no matter how you connect your input, your output polarity remains constant. Even if you connect 12VAC, the output will be rectified to 12VDC, so you are safe:
    PLUS MINUS.png MINUS PLUS.png

    So here is my board. I used what is called "Veroboard" which is a perfboard that has parallel power buss strips of copper clad, since I am making polarity protected terminal strips for connecting my DC accessories.

    Some of my accessories use 12V, some 9V, and some 5V, so I use DC to DC Buck Converters as needed, input with the 12VDC. I just folded over the bridge leads to their respective copper clad buss strip, and soldered, and used a dremel to grind away copper clad to isolate the copper strip that the bridge is mounted to. This one has 5 terminals per side, but I can make with as many terminals as desired. I used a 25A bridge, which is way overkill, but they are cheap.
    Image1.jpg
     
  9. SJ Z-man

    SJ Z-man TrainBoard Member

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    That only assumes that you wire the protector + Out to the proper internal + bus ;)
    I normally wipe a Red and Black Sharpie on the blue material above the terminals (but this would be White and Black in this case. Use an oil-based Paint Sharpie.
     
  10. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    And I tested my internal wiring with a sacrificial LED/1K resistor before connecting anything else internal. Swapped the external polarity to verify that part too! :D
     
  11. Nick Lorusso

    Nick Lorusso TrainBoard Member

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    Looking good Rob
     
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  12. badlandnp

    badlandnp TrainBoard Member

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    I lost track of your thread here for a bit. Had a look tonight, and wow! Better and better every time I see it! And it just oozes NP! The Mike looks great considering the starting point, and the scale!

    Sure is FUN!
     
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  13. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Time for an update. All the modules have been constructed, and the bases and skyboards have been painted: 1.jpg

    And today I started on trackwork. The module next to the roundhouse module will have 5 turnouts on it, to take 6 tracks down to 2, so I had to do some mixing and matching of Left and Right turnouts to get the fit. I think this layout will work:
    2.jpg

    I am worried I might not be able to fit my Coal Dock in, so I will have to selectively compress it quite a bit. Here is what I need to fit off the second turnout of the 3 turnout array where I have not yet placed the cork:
    3.jpg

    It's getting too hot to continue this afternoon, so I am going inside for a Netflix Nap. Everytime I turn on Netflix during the daytime, I fall asleep in 15 minutes. Is that a Senior Thing? :D
     
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  14. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    Really like the coal dock Ray. Thank you for posting.

    Joe
     
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  15. Z train things

    Z train things TrainBoard Member

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    Robert,
    I think you and I have the same interior work bench decorator. Mine sometimes looks worse than yours. The thing I say most often is ...."now where in the devil did I lay that...." I am encouraged to know I am not the only one with a somewhat less than tidy workbench. Messy workbenches equate to 'getting something done on occasion"(y)
    Your work is looking very nice. Will be a wonder to behold when done.
     
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  16. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Yeah, I'm messy on my workbench. I clean it up and a week later it looks like it is now, but I have all my tools hung on metal pegboard now so I can find them.
     
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  17. Joe Lovett

    Joe Lovett TrainBoard Member

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    In one of the house's we lived in I installed nice wood grain peg board in our garage on one wall. It's great to have all of your tools hung up so you can find what you're looking for.

    Joe
     
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  18. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    So are you gonna take one of the dumps off the model?
    Like this?
    0403C085-777C-43B9-AA30-2135F4CCB1B4.jpeg
     
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  19. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    As you guessed it, yes. I only have 8 inches to work with, and if it was not a 440mm TTZ module, I would make it to scale, but I already had to chop off the machine shop annex on my roundhouse, because half would be on the next module and half of the annex would be hanging off the back of the next module, so I shortened it and took out windows.

    That's what model railroaders so proudly call "Selective Compression" when they describe a model that they shrunk down to fit the space. You get the flavor of the prototype, but not the whole meal. :D
     
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  20. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    I think that will still capture the look and feel of the structure for sure. You don’t realize how big it is til you see those little men in the picture!

    To that end I’m not so sure I don’t like compression better. Some barns I’ve built and the roundhouse I have just look huge. But....they are proportional and scaled just look big. Which when isolated gives a great look but around other structures sometimes “eats” the scene.
     
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