Jan 29, 2006
Code 40 turnout. Works with lube only now lol.
Cool! Made with Fast Tracks / Handlaidtrack.com?
To make the points swing easier, up near the frog, file the rail base (the horizontal surface) with a small square file so there is no longer the base on each side of the rail (now just the web and the head of the rail.)
Makes the points easier to bend.
Also, if you download their tie base, it’s a PDF file. You can open that in any CAD software and make modifications as necessary. Like, maybe a Wye?
Partially, but to be honest I am really disappointed with fasttracks. I think you can achieve great results in bigger scales using this product, but fasttracks tools in Z are mostly not usable so I had to CNC cut the ties that you can see.
I hope you can agree that for Z you need extra precision - some small imperfections may not affect larger scales, but in Z it will result in derailments. By building a few turnouts I quickly realised that Z turnouts need a very good vertical and horizontal rail alignment. I found out that fattracks has a few errors that makes the jig useless in Z:
1. As someone has already mentioned on this forum fasttracks jig has wrong positions of ties - it prevents proper alignment of rails at the end of the turnout as you can see on my photo - this is my attempt with fasttracks jig. No, I am not a newbie, in order to align rails there should be at least 2 pcb ties on each end.
2. Tie spacing is prototypical and is varying - this is the most annoying part - I think that you don't really need the varying tie distance for the turnout, it's enough to have the fixed one. It makes the job easier as you have to combine pcb ties and woden ties.
I already traced the PDF file, it was really fun because of the varying tie distance. Then I realized it's trash and redesigned the whole turnout myself in CAD. I used the fixed distance as it's easier. The turnout will look better anyway as code 40 is way better than code 50.
3. Fasttracks has just 1 pcb tie at the point rails where they join the frog - I don't think this will last long if you are using a powerfull switch machine, so I have added more ties to solder the point rails to. On my video that part is not yet finished.
4. Point and frog tool is generally good, but requires careful alignment anyway with a file after - the points are too thick and you have to make them a little bit thinner, but not too thin. While the rail is in the tool - you can't do it. The fact that you need post tool alignment is also a bit annoying. Again this is because it's Z scale, for larger scales it could be fine as it is.
5. Stock aid tool is somewhat useful but also requires post filing, it's not helping to get rid of the bottom part of the rail. I believe this is because it's designed for code 40 - code 55 rails, but as you probably know code 40 and code 55 have different thickness, so a universal tool can't do the job well enough for code 40 at least.
6. The jig is made of aluminum. You need at least 100W soldering iron as it acts like a heat sink withdrawing the heat from the pcb tie quickly resulting in poor soldering quality. Maybe if you use an acid flux, it will be better, but I am not really willing to try this when soldering inside. And the flux everyone recommends here is not sold in my country.
7. I don't like messing with pcb ties cutting. If you are using a lead solder, I don't like the idea of shredded pieces of solder containing lead on my hands.
All the points you make are valid, I was an early adopter of the Fast Tracks code 40 jigs and observed many of the same pitfalls as you.
Finished with my house of ill repute. I call it Cherrie Poppin's Playhouse:
Very nice Robert! More than even the structure the figures and their placement seem to say it all. Haha.
Looks like someone's wife is lookin' for them on the right.....
[mention]rray [/mention] looks great! Also amazed in how fast you got this done! Question, what paint did you use for the wood walkway(s) upstairs? -T
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I used Weather It, it is dilute India ink in alcohol to weather the decks and stairs.
That’s a voyeur sitting on the barrels.
Nice work, Robert! Are any of those light red? It's kinda hard to tell in the image.
Hemi, read back through the thread....
Doh! Yup, it's in there...
They are all cool white LED's, but I put Tamiya Clear Red over the upstairs side door, and Tamiya Clear Orange over the other two lamps.
I did order some Red, Green, and Warm White 0402's that have the .01mm wires, so I won't have to dye them next time.
Just classic is all I can say…and really well done. This will be a great addition to your layout. Just not so sure the neighbors will approve of it, especially if you put it close to a residential area that is…
They say a true artist infuses or buries a semblance of themselves somewhere in their artwork…….just sayin………
Hmm.... thanks gentlemen.. I think I'll have to be satisfied with my Atlas switches.
I liked the Grumman LLV postal delivery van in the last ZTrack mag, but it came in to use after the 50s. Apparently, Jeep Willys were the suppliers of postal vehicles prior to the Grumman so I tried my hands at that using a Shapeways 3d print of various Jeeps. I'm interested to see other efforts...
Nicely done Bruce!