Mar 11, 2015
Sounds like you're making some great improvements.
You know, I do now have a back yard...
Backyard contains a reverse loop only!
Mainline/Siding along east side of house,
and main layout in front. Although, I love to create a longer line around the back!
Gotta TRY and run that past Mom and see if she goes for it!
Got almost 480# of dirt dumped yesterday. NOT even close to enough to finish!
More dirt Monday probably. Was able to lift the main loop in fron though, that was too low!
Reassembled track today, and test ran the ALCo PA. Ran OK in on direction. Had derail trouble in the other.
However, moving a little dirt, lifting a joint, and raising outer rail did the trick! Not bad, considering
track is laid out directly on the dirt, no ballast added. Can start working on getting some of the front finished
finally! May no9t get to the main projects I have this year. But, I'll be quite happy with what I've
managed to get done up to now! Considering what I've been through earlier this year!
Not gonna be able to do much now, for a day or two!
Mother Nature decided to let a severe thunderstorm pass through!
Plenty of rain, and a bit of hail, but nothing too bad, so I was told.
Newly added dirt did NOT wash away! If anything, rain will help get
the dirt to settle even more! Had one large standing puddle, but in an
area that has NOT been filled in yet. Trying to get track for front loop done first.
The remaining track from the wye, towards the back is next. After things dry out
Been talking about it! Now, I'm gonna show it!
A few photos of the upgrade work in progress.
Blocks to right still need to be dug in and leveled.
In place to see what was necessary, and how far back they went.
Rest of the wye will be placed back here, after filling and leveling.
Turnout, top left, was causing trouble. Cars derailed, locomotives uncoupled
as I went through the straight leg of turnout! Grade had something to do with it, I think!
Dropped almost 5" in about 4 1/2 feet! Grade WAS noticeable from a distance! If I can get track lifted about 2 1/2" - 3" I should be good. Still a grade, but MUCH less than original.
Lower section of inner and outer loops. Here, you can see how the inner track needs to be filled in! And a short section that was filled in.
The rocks in front, were moved slightly, and a bucket of dirt dropped in. Possible sight of tunnel on inside track!
Outer track is on modified gradeLifted track, up to turnout for back! Hoping this will prevent the issues I was having!
Won't know, until I finish filling the area in, leveling track, and making a coal train test run! Or a freight train test run!
And finally, for now, a general view of most of the upgraded area!
From turnout to left, and along bottom, still needs to be filled in and leveled.
My plan here, is to have a rock wall, between loops, with inner track in a cut, for visual interest.
On left, inner and outer tracks are separated by maybe a couple of inches yet! Still have some
vertical separation, for added interest. Instead of everything being at the same level.
Extra rocks on "mountain", and cinder block cap, will be moved! Rock wall here will be raised
one more level, to inside of track. I wanted more vertical wall(s) along this area, for visual interest.
After the dirt work is done, and things are running good, ballasting will begin!
Makes it easier to test, and fix, before final ballasting. This is a couple of days worth of dirt work, moved by hand!
Gonna take a while, as I do NOT want to wear myself out too fast! Gotta try to get it done by next month however!
Planning on having railroad on railroad club layout tour, scheduled for Sept 21. I'm also offering Sept 22, in case folks
are not able to make it on the 21st. Others welcome, if in the Denver, Boulder, Longmont area, or other parts of Northern Colorado!
Thinking of having an extra throttle handy, so folks can operate a train as well, if they choose to!
Should be interesting, when the time arrives!
Got a few rocks positioned not too long ago.
Spent maybe an hour tonight, after dinner, getting
a few retaining wall blocks placed. Got 4-5 blocks in
place, and dumped another 5 buckets of dirt. Hope to
get more blocks placed in the next day or two. Hoping
that I can be up early Tuesday. Supposed to be cool, so
I’m hoping that maybe I can get more rebuilding done!
Ran a 10 car freight train recently, after getting loop back
down. Issues early on. Cars, not track however! Added an
additional 3 cars to the coal train. So, I now have a 15 car
coal train! Might set it up and test run it over current track repair!
Really can’t wait to see how it’ll handle going to the back!!
Had derail/uncoupling issues with a turnout.
Was right at the top of a vertical grade! So I think the grade was causing issues!
That area will be leveled out now, with a much gentler grade! Hoping I don’t have
the issues I did before I started! If all else, I’m going to replace the turnouts I have
with new turnouts from USA Trains. If all goes good, I should be done, wth time to
spare, for the railroad club layout tours next month!
Done just in time for winter to get started?
Done while summer still here. Gonna be a nice 80* Tuesday!
Hopefully, it won’t take too long to get remaining blocks in place, and remaining
dirt unloaded from back of truck finally! May set up the coal train as well, and let
it run a bit. Added 3 cars recently, so it’s now 15 cars. Snow could hit as early as
mid Sept. Oct more likely. Should be done working by then!
Photos, man, we need photos! Especially that 15-car coal train. In N, that fills my version of Crescent siding. In garden scale, that'd be almost 20 feet long?
Plan to get photos!
Total length: About 30 feet
Total weight, cars only: About 45 pounds!
Train consist: 3 GP30, 15 coal hoppers, Caboose.
Should see the required operation, if I run with both
cabooses, and decide to turn the locomotives around!
An interesting, and time consuming act!
You asked, you got!
The Burlington Northern and last two Rio Grande cars are the latest, and last additions to the coal train!
As you can see, caboose now well past the bridge! Before, caboose would be about the middle of the bridge.
Does NOT run this direction(CCW), on the INSIDE loop. Gets to the top, and the first 3 cars stringline!
However, it DOES run in the opposite direction(CW), with no trouble. Fits between turnout, front center, and turnout
just out of sight, to the right, leading to a short 2 car spur. 1 more car would clear the mainline turnout, but interfere with turnout to spur!
Nothing from the side and back. Track not complete yet! Have to fit 1 section back in. And still have to get MORE dirt!
Figure another 400-500# MIGHT do the trick! So far, I've got close to 15,000# of dirt added! Most of the rocks have
been recycled from other projects! Only got maybe 1000# of rock, for what you see here currently! Everything else reused.
Might try to get last piece of track in tomorrow. Not sure when. Tree in front is getting a needed haircut!
Having dead branches removed, and a general trimming. At least 1 branch hangs HALFWAY over neighbors driveway!
More dirt over the weekend maybe. IF I'm up early enough, and weather permits. And since no rain forecast for a
while, shouldn't be a problem! Overall, I'm quite happy with how the rebuild is going. Working out very well! Will know
a bit more when last section of track is in, and graded!
What a project! And to think, I still want to add a couple more bridges, and a short(3ft) tunnel!
Impressive coal train!
It runs LONGER than the house, if I run to the back!
Track not complete yet, so I can't get photos there yet.
Should make things a little easier, when done.
What a project it's been!
Wow. Those three Geeps alone must have drained your bank account!
Maybe $1200 for all 3 Geeps. But, this also includes Airwire
Radio control/Sound for all units as well. Radio control and
sound was maybe 1/3 the cost.
Not quite as bad as one might think! But still bad enough!
Ya gotta love it!
Keith doesn't worry about cost. He is a railroad typhoon...er...I mean Tycoon!
Well....Gotta worry some about the cost! If too costly, I can’t go on!
Track upgrades might be next. Replacing the Aristo turnouts with USA
Trains all brass turnouts. Not many more trains, unless I find something
I just gotta have! Gotta be prepared, in case of another drastic health emergency!
Like the massive Staph infection a bit earlier this year! Gotta be extra careful, until
I can get medical coverage again!
Enjoyed running train again for a very short time today. Tested out track, after guys
came in, laid plywood down, and did a major tree trimming job this morning/afternoon.
More dirt, maybe Friday, IF I’m up and moving early enough! Trackwork should be complete
in short order! So far, everything runs good, looks good. I’m quite happy with results so far!
Accomplished absolutely nothing today!
Needed a short break. But, I did accomplish something:
I successfully managed to get ahold of the other USAT
Rio Grande GP30, #3017, from that auction site! Have both numbers now!
Just gotta get Airwire Radio Control/Sound and it’ll be ready to start
earning its keep, hauling coal! If up at a decent time tomorrow, I may
start working on installing last short section of track and connecting the
backyard once again! Grading track and getting it all rewired again!
Connection to back in place and wired, once again!
Track is graded and running. Test ran single locomotive
only on it, when I finished. Might try the coal train over
the entire route tomorrow. No ballasting yet. May let it sit,
unballasted for this year, and finish it next year. Letting
things settle over winter and early spring. Updated photos
tomorrow, IF I remember to bring camera up with me!
May have to do some last minute side to side leveling, but that
might be all I have for now. May water the rebuilt areas in
again, after I’m done for the day! Help it settle. Like the results now!
Think it’ll run as I hoped it would, at the Beginning!