Silcon Valley Free-MoN: A new yard has begun

RBrodzinsky May 20, 2020

  1. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Holy smokes Rick, that's some beautiful and precise work. Excellent! (y) The turnouts (or switches) also look very durable.
     
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  2. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    Rick, you are braver than me, I have never hand laid track
     
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  3. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Phase 1 complete! 17 #8 switches done. 1 Wye, 7 lefts and 9 rights (with one L/R pair built together)

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    John, only the switches! Track will be ME Code 55 (over 6 scale miles of it!)
     
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  4. SOO MILW CNW

    SOO MILW CNW TrainBoard Supporter

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    Are you using solid or hinged point rails?, If solid,, how well are your solder joints on the throw bar holding up?
    Thanks
    Greg
     
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  5. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Most of us use solid. The points do tend to come off the throwbars, and we normally have to repair a couple per show. A quick hit with a soldering iron, and that point is typically good for a few year’s worth of shows. Moving to the wider throwbars have also helped, giving a larger area for the footing to be attached.
     
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  6. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Well, after finishing those first 17 #8a, I managed to (1) hurt my back and (2) get sick, basically sidelining any work for about 10 days. But, I got busy mid last week, and this morning finished up the 16 #6s. Still have to isolate the frogs on the 6s

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  7. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Nice work! Having built a few myself, I can appreciate the scope of your task. it's a real job.
     
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  8. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    Impressive Rick! (y)(y)(y)
     
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  9. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    My eyes are going buggy just looking at it. Nice work!
     
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  10. sams

    sams TrainBoard Member

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    @RBrodzinsky Wow !! I have seen how the hand made turnouts are made and it is very impressive. Especially in N scale. I'm sure you've been doing it for years but very nice. I don't know how you do it or have the patience haha

    The turnouts look very realistic when done though. Good Stuff and Going to fun to watch ! (y)
     
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  11. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    This more than tripled the number I have done over the years! The real trick is finding a rhythm; with the size of this batch I realized the best way was to get all the pieces prepped / filed first for ALL of them, then just hunker down and solder. Still could really only do a maximum of 4 per day, hunched over the jig and soldering station. Just how long it took to cut and gap all the PCB ties!
     
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  12. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Modules in the rough! Time to start cutting full size wood, now that I’ve finished the ties on the switches

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  13. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    My neighbor’s table saw came in handy this morning

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  14. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    It has been quite a while since I’ve updated this thread, which doesn’t mean progress stopped, although it did take a couple steps backwards at first and then a long pause for a vacation and the fires/smoke.

    After cutting the end plates, as shown above, we attempted to precision drill locator pin holes so that the module ends could use fancy McMaster Carr hardware to ensure that the modules align perfectly. My neighbor does not have a mill or any fancy locating equipment, so, we tried our best, using mechanical stops, measuring constantly, etc. Unfortunately, we failed, but not by much! Our precision was probably between 1/32nd and 1/16th of an inch, but that was “too sloppy” for the hardware. But, one of the members of SV FreeMo-N does have a mill, and also happened to have plenty of furniture grade plywood handy (having just done some work in his new home). He graciously took the drawings I supplied, and the locating hardware, and made a whole new set of 10 end plates. We picked them up from him (lives up near Sacramento) as we were leaving on a trip (I was not allowed to visit and work with him as we were going off to visit our 1 year old grandson); so between seeing the above photos, and getting home from trip, a full month passed.

    Here you can see the new end plates, with the locator hardware installed.

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    The eagle-eyed reader will note that, even with a mill, he had to take a couple of stabs to get everything aligned to the tolerance needed to keep 12 tracks aligned across 4 section boundaries.

    The “inside” of the end plates get a cross piece added, to support the 1 inch foam that is used for the module surface.

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    The sides are added, which also have a 1x2 ledge for foam support, and cross pieces are added to provide support.

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    And, the first module is constructed!

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  15. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Next up was to work on the two curved modules. Here, we let geometry and physics let us make a precision module, with the shape defined by the different lengths of the side pieces.

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    The centerline has a 91.67” radius, with a 36” arc length (22.5 degrees). By calculating the arc length for the inner and outer radius, and carefully locating the interior crosspieces, the module frame takes shape. But, not being able to use a 1x2 along the sides to support the foam, I attached some metal hanger straps to provide the support.

    Here are the two curved sections ready for their foam (pre hanger straps)

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    And they match up with the other section beautifully

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    Note: the weird color of these two photos was due to this being one of the “orange” days we had due to the wildfires
     
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  16. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Work proceeded to complete the sections

    Here, 5 of the 6 sections have been constructed, with all the materials for the last next to them

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    And here are all 6 sections connected up

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    To give some perspective on scale size, my Daylight with GS4 had to try it on for size

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    There will be 8 interior yard storage tracks, extending about 7 additional feet in front (3’) and back (4’) of the Daylight.

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    End to end, along the centerline, this module is 22 feet.
     
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  17. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Today, I finally cut the conduit for the legs, and started turning the pink foam into “dirt”

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  18. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Things got very busy with doctor appointments, DMV visits, Yom Kippur, etc, so didn’t make quite as much progress as I hoped. Plus, got very hot and smokey again (we don’t have AC, living close to SF Bay). But some progress has been made.

    Started to put the bus wires in (just got the two curved sections so far)

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    On the cross piece you can see that I am using Wago connectors for breakout from the bus.

    I also received leg pockets from Mark Watson, and was able to get them installed today. Instead of the heavy wooden legs, these legs are 1/2 inch conduit

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    With the locator pins and the wider stance of these legs, the sections are almost as if they’re clamped already.

    Next up is to put the cab bus connectors into fascia and add the rest of the bus wiring (plus PSX and 12VDC rectifier)
     
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  19. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Very nice work! These modules look fantastic!
     
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  20. Massey

    Massey TrainBoard Member

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    Looks good. Can’t wait to see how it progresses.
     

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