1. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    I have always been fascinated with Christmas tree trains and always wanted to put on IN the tree. I saw Bill Hennings Christmas tree. I thought about it for years, last year I started to build my dream and I could use your help. Please throw me any suggestions you may have? I will post pictures below of my progress. My biggest question at the moment is what engine would be the best for the Kato 8.5 radius track?
     
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  2. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    I decided the secret to anything being built is a strong backbone which on a tree is the trunk. I built a center 6ft tall Helix (I later cut it down to 5ft when I realized my ceilings were too low. I am using Kato 8.5 radius track. My train can make it but quite often the front axle will be off the track by the time it makes it to the top. Any recommendation on engine I should get?
     

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  3. Mo-Pac

    Mo-Pac TrainBoard Member

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    Thats a serious Helix!(y)
     
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  4. Mo-Pac

    Mo-Pac TrainBoard Member

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    I would say any double axle locomotive. With extended body mount coupler.
     
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  5. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    a switcher would be best
     
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  6. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    I was wondering about a switcher, I will give it a shot. Since I am using Kato track, would a Kato switcher be best?
     
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  7. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    I currently have the tree broken down to paint, this was the last pic I took of it before breaking it down. I have tested it in 3 sections. 1. being the Helix, 2. being the downward spiral, 3. being the ground run back to the Helix to start all over again. I have trimmed it up a little more too. I will post pics of it back together with COLOR!!!!
     

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  8. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    Tonight I added all of the Kato 20-170 (8.5 R) back to the Helix and I did a test run. Guys I don't know my engines very well but its a 6 axle engine (all that I have.) It MADE IT to the top!!!! I will admit early in the helix I noticed the first axle had jumped the track. I was worried this may be a problem early on so in my plans I installed a "re-railer" at the start and end of the Helix. It worked as well so as it made its victory lap at the top (before the downhill run) it was back on all 6 axles. Bremner I have ordered a Kato switcher engine tonight! Thank you for the advice! So here is the engine at the top of the 5ft Helix!
     

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  9. Mo-Pac

    Mo-Pac TrainBoard Member

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    I am really liking the outcome of this Tree! Very different and awesome looking!
     
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  10. badlandnp

    badlandnp TrainBoard Member

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    Neat idea for a "tree"! So, if you fill the inside withe lighting and run the trains, it should make for some neat effects! And maybe even a little short pine tree at the top?
     
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  11. Trent Nunnelee

    Trent Nunnelee TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks Mo-Pac!

    badlandnp, This is just the center, LOL. I am definitely thinking about what all I can do with the center, original plans were to run all my wires in the center to keep them hidden. See I still have to add all the limb structure AND the limbs. Last year I went to an after-Christmas sale and bought me a new tree, that will become my parts tree for making custom pine limbs and if you see in one of the pics above, we will make little villages for the train to pass on its way down.
    I am hoping you can vision it... my wife can't, lol. My kids are trying. Hoping tonight to add the "wings?" not sure what to call them but the parts that will give the tree its shape, they are 4 large triangular shaped (very jagged to keep a tree look) pieces. Although they give the tree its shape, their actual function will be to support the track as its going down.
     
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  12. badlandnp

    badlandnp TrainBoard Member

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    Now I have a idea what the bigger picture is, and that is really cool!
     
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  13. sams

    sams New Member

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    Wow !! I’m looking forward to the end result on this one !! That is one hell of a climb!!!
     
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