Rainier Great Western Const Update

RGW Feb 19, 2007

  1. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    Quick update from tonight's work session, Reynold, Doug and I spent the night debugging a foot long dead section of track and our reverser refusing to allow trains through the lower wye (Black River Jct).

    After much debate about the dead section we elected to cut the feeders off under the subroadbed, then hard wire and run new wire back to the bus. This completely solved the dead section. We surmise that one or both of the suitcase connectors failed to seat properly, preventing current getting to the track.

    As for the mrc ad520 reverser, we are convinced it's failing to operate as intended. I will order a new one for install next week.

    Thanks for checking in.


    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
  2. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    It's been too long since my last post and I apologize for that. We have been making subtle, but necessary improvements and fixes to make operating the layout better. Cataloging these changes over numerous posts seemed silly, especially since pictures did none of the work justice, so the posts would simply be words. Anyway, here's an update for this past Tuesday's session.

    I spent some of the evening completing the ballasting on the approaches to the Wain. Here's what the final product looks like.

    [​IMG]

    It started with tracks that were laid a couple of weeks ago. We added new ties to fill the gaps.

    [​IMG]

    Adding ballast should not be rushed. Imagine the tortoise and the hare. You know who wins. I use an old pill bottle. You can fill it as much as you like, turn it on its side and either tap it with your fingers, or tap the flanges under the cap on the rails to dispense ballast as necessary. I use a stiff brush to fill between the ties, then a light run of a finger at tie level to clear any ballast. I finish with a high end wheelset to ensure no ballast is against the inside of the rails.

    [​IMG]

    When you're satisfied you're ready for glue, hit the entire area with wet water (a small cosmetic spray bottle with water and two drops of dish soap) and then a relatively runny mix of white glue and water. No more than 50/50, but I like mine a tad bit runnier than that. Drip it thoroughly on the ballast, then another light spray of wet water.

    [​IMG]

    You should let it all dry for 24 hours before any other work. If you find you have glue residue on the ties, a q-tip dipped in IPA will wash that right away.

    Reynold has been doing a lot of work at Black River Jct.

    [​IMG]

    First we had reverser issues. It took us an entire work session testing every conceivable issue before we realized the reverser was the culprit. We purchased and installed a Digitrax AR1.

    [​IMG]

    That seemed to do the trick, except we then had issues with very old Shinohara 2.5° wye turnouts. These old fellas are not dcc friendly. I immediately got on line looking for a Walther's dcc friendly replacement. But, Reynold wanted to try a method he was shown several years ago. Here is the final product and it works perfectly. If you zoom in you can see the work.

    [​IMG]

    In order to make this turnout dcc friendly he cut the throw bar flange and the point flange in half. Reattaching both halves with minute screws that had to be filed to shorten them. He also gapped the front side of the frog. Then next step would have been to power route using the tortoise, but access made that impossible. So he wired jumpers in place. After all that, he went back with brown paint and a microbrush to cover up his handiwork to the naked eye.

    If it were me, I yank the darn thing and drop in the new turnout. But this was a cool solution to watch take shape. It works perfectly.

    Well that's it for now. We are converting from Lenz to wireless NCE in the very near future; so we will keep you up to speed on that progress. Thanks for checking in.

    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2022
  3. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member

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    I always enjoy your updates Mike. Looks like a lot of progress.
     
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  4. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    Nice updates Mike. Everything is looking great! (y)(y)(y)
     
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  5. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    Liking your progress Mike

    New job has me working 10 hour days doesn't leave much time to get there to help out
     
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  6. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    This morning's Google doodle, is a tribute to Elijah McCoy, who invented a lubrication process for steam locomotives, but if you ask me it's really about model railroading!

    [​IMG]





    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
  7. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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  8. Shortround

    Shortround TrainBoard Member

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    Hmm! My security software warned it was not advisable to go there. So, I'll have to take your word.
     
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  9. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    Today was yet another RED LETTER DAY on the RGW. After 28 years, the RGW is no longer run by a Lenz operating system. Tonight we replaced the Lenz system with a wireless NCE Pro Cab system.

    [​IMG]

    We all broke out in smiles when we were able to grab locomotives and run them around the layout with the ProCab throttle and two new wireless handheld cabs.

    What a joy to make this transition and have it be so seemless. I am really looking forward to advanced consisting with this system and JMRI. Lenz and JMRI didn't play nice together, so consisting just wasn't an enjoyable experience. Now we have two systems with a long history of working well together and I for one am looking forward to that!

    Thanks for checking in.

    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2022
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  10. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member

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    Its great when technology actually works huh? Glad for the updates Mike PlZ carry on my friend.
     
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  11. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks Tom

    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
  12. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    Just had a fun moment in the train room. I went in to work on some outstanding projects, in this case to put a locomotive back together. I have this Broadway Limited first generation paragon SD40-2, CNW 6911.

    [​IMG]

    The sound decoder would not play unless you continuously held the function 8 key. Try it, it's not possible and still operate the loco. After multiple tries to reconfigure, I sent the Loksound 5 micro decoder back. It has to be that, right? ESU tried to duplicate the issue, no dice. But they sent me a new one anyway.

    Once it arrived, I put it in and programmed it. Put it on the railroad and dang it if it didn't do the same thing. I resigned myself to it being a lost cause. I'd have a very expensive non sound decoder. Ugh.

    That is until tonight. I put the shell back on and put it on the layout. The sound started right up and it purred like a kitten in motion. I only hit the f8 to start up the sound!

    Chalk up another W for NCE over Lenz.

    Thanks for checking in.



    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
  13. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    Chalk it up to gremlins just don't get them wet
     
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  14. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member

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    Technology is your friend. Quick! Go buy a Lotto ticket :D:D
     
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  15. dalebaker

    dalebaker TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Mike,

    some very nice progress going there! Your updates are always great!

    BTW, I have a very nice non-sound decoder I’ll be happy to send your way. I only let the smoke out of one end, so it only goes in one direction!

    Take care,
    Dale
     
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  16. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
     
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  17. RGW

    RGW TrainBoard Member

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    Just a quick update from tonight. Rey was able to put electrical integrity back into two of our oldest Shinohara curved turnouts. By doing feeders on the rails and using the tortoise to route the power, we were able to successfully run both 4 and 6-axle locomotives through them without issue.

    [​IMG]

    As he was working on that, I put in newly acquired NCE equipment. In this case a PB105 5 amp booster. After another series of emails exchanged with NCE, we determined that our TRC power supplies would be more than adequate to power the PowerCab and the booster. This will give us the ability to sell the P515 power supply we purchased to fire up the PowerCab. Nice bonus.

    The NCE setup requires the layout be broken into sections based on the number of boosters. To quote NCE, "On a higher level of importance than the EB3's." Fortunately that had already been done to accommodate the Lenz system, so moving a single wire from the left busbar back to the right split the layout almost literally in half.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, the Controls Shelf is getting rather cramped, but we are still working out the logistics of the component layout and we haven't yet done a thing with wire/cable routing as a result. That said, it is an absolute joy to have this system in place and we look forward to operating the layout with it very soon.

    Thanks for checking in.

    The Rainier Great Western HO Scale Railroad
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2022
  18. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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    So your decoder has learned how to vape wowwwwwww
     
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  19. dalebaker

    dalebaker TrainBoard Member

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    So Vince, I’m willing to let it go at half price for you!:ROFLMAO:
     
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  20. VinceP

    VinceP TrainBoard Member

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