The JACALAR RR

RBrodzinsky Aug 26, 2009

  1. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Just a couple of photos to show what I've been doing UNDER the layout.

    I looked for any old photo showing how the area around the command station was. I thought I had posted one, a long time ago, but can't find now. Anyway, here is the area now. The PSX boards had just been sitting on the shelf to the right, now they are cleanly mounted to the wall, with a nice area for the command station, the CS's power supply, and the PC power supply that I use for auxiliary power (it provides +/- 12 V, 5V and 3.3 V).

    20160731_125029.jpg
    This is what most of my wiring looked like previously (this section still exists, as it is not an area I was rewiring). When I started having the back/neck problems, I simply did whatever I needed to get the layout wired, and didn't worry about being neat (as can be seen). A mixture of PosiTaps, wire nuts and Ideal multi-connectors -- plus screw terminals for LEDs

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    Here is one of the new areas. For the tracks under the yard, I went with the Ideal multi-connectors. The main bus runs along the wall (top of photo; layout front towards bottom)

    20160731_125059.jpg

    With the large number of track pieces in the yard, this was the simplest and most cost effective solution
     

    Attached Files:

  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Quite a change! Looks like there is also significantly less wire in use.
     
  3. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Yes, the big difference was with the ability to work more freely underneath, I was able to trim wires neatly. The Ideal Connectors are very inexpensive, and with heavy-duty double-sided tape, stick nicely to the underside of the benchwork.

    When I first started the layout, it had been 30+ years since I had done any major electrical/electronics work, and it showed. Now, 6+ years later, my skills and confidence have returned
     
  4. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    Wiring looks good (y)

    Hope I never have to re-wire...getting to old for that ! :whistle::(
     
  5. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Wiring doesn't have to be an art project but does need to be practical and work.

    Looking good.
     
  6. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    And, I do plan, eventually, to get under the rest of the layout, and clean those areas up, too. That will just be shortening wires (those areas are fully sceniced, but making sure there aren't hanging wires that can be accidentally pulled is a GOOD THING)
     
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  7. RedRiverRR4433

    RedRiverRR4433 TrainBoard Member

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    Nice work Rick.....

    Staying cool and having fun with it........:cool::cool:

    Shades
     
  8. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    The past two weeks have been spent testing trains through the yard (and around the rest of the layout), looking for any problems, particularly on switches, that may have been introduced during the relaying of the track (and general inactivity). Everything seems to be running well (after a couple of minor reseatings of Unitrack, where the rail did not align into the unijoiner correctly). With that done, I figured it was time to begin preparing the yard for scenery.

    Here are two views of the plain yard

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    I will be ballasting the yard tracks in black cinders, and, as with most yards, the tracks need to "grade level" rather than the Unitrack raised roadbed. Only the far back track will be raised as a main (leftmost track in upper, rightmost in lower). Previously, (old photo) I had done similar on the approach area to the turntable

    DSC_0173.JPG
    The way I did that area was by using a layer of large WS black ballast to "raise" the ground, and then cover the surface, as well as track ballast, with AR&M N-scale black cinder. So as not to use so much of the ballast, and using my experience from my FreeMoN modules, I will modify my approach for the main yard by using black foam board, black and brown sanded grout for the areas between the tracks, and the black cinder ballast for the actual tracks.

    These last two photos show the start of cutting out the strips of foam board for between the rails. Not glued down yet, but already one gets the feel of what is to come. The foam board is 3/16" thick, which I get at Staples (Elmer's foam board).

    20160813_114945.jpg

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  9. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

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    Looks like a really good plan and a really good start!
     
  10. RedRiverRR4433

    RedRiverRR4433 TrainBoard Member

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    Looking good Rick. Have fun with it. Your yard track plan looks familiar to me.

    Staying cool and having fun with it......:cool::cool:

    Shades
     
  11. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    This week I got >95% of the foam board cut and laid between the tracks of the yard, so that it doesn't appear as if the tracks are elevated on a graded roadbed. The only area still to be done is the yard ladder.

    20160820_081716.jpg
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    The board is tacked down simply with Aileen's Tacky Glue
     
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  12. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    This morning, I started putting down sanded grout to simulate the dirt between the tracks. I am using 5 different colors of grout, a light ash grey, a light tan, a reddish clay, a dark brown and black. I paint a 50:50 white glue / alcohol mixture onto the foam, and then sprinkle the grout through a kitchen sifter. I put the different colors into the sifter in rows, and simply tap. The glue is not fully dry when I took the photos, so you can see wet spots.

    20160820_101117.jpg


    20160820_101049.jpg

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    Once I get all the ground on, I will then start the ballasting (which will take most of the rest of the year -- can't do too much in one session, since with Unitrack, need to brush off each tie.
     
  13. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Made more progress in this area at the yard end. Bascially got it ready for ballasting. Compare the "soil" in the last photo with the new one

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    And a broader overview of this end of the yard. Note the full covering on the switches, now.

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    Have to smooth out that one area between in the center a bit. Overall, very pleased with the way this is coming out.
     
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  14. Nimo

    Nimo TrainBoard Member

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    Looking awesome! The transformation of wiring is really good - I'm sure it will help big time in long run.
     
  15. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Got the ballast down on the section immediately leading into roundhouse area and the ends of the staging tracks. White balance a little off, the ballast doesn't look quite so white as in this photo. Will still do some additional weathering (oil spills, etc).

    20160829_091508.jpg

    Longer range view of ballasted area
    20160829_091523.jpg
     
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  16. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

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    Looks really good Rick!
     
  17. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Thanks Dave. The real key to hiding the Unitrack look is the thin layer of ballast between the rails, and then cleaning off the ties before applying the glue. Tedious work, with a fine brush, but worth it
     
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  18. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

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    Well my least favorite modelling activity is ballasting. I have often thought I would get the hang of it, but it just isn't happening......
     
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  19. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Ballasting is all about the beholder. Rick might like what he's done and I may not. Like what others have said here it is my least favorite activity. Kato doesn't make it easy because of the lack of tie height. Pretty sure they think it's already done.

    Can't say I like what Rick has done but hey, he got it done and I haven't.
     
  20. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    It's OK Rick, I am not 100% happy either. Especially the way the lighter ballast spread. Need to work on it some more (hence why I decided to work all aspects of this small section of the yard, before committing everything.
     

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