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Dad-1's Blog

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Preparing for the Exhibition - Start Early !!



The last time my large layout saw light of day was the end of July last year at my clubs Summer Exhibition.

I originally was contemplating it being the last outing. Too big for me to manage by myself and needing to hire

a van and driver to get it anywhere, once you're over 75 no van hire insurers will cover you .....


My trouble was it was voted best in show (Stick chest out in pride) and our exhibition manager insisted it came back

in 2019 to defend it's position ! Double Groan !!


We started having problems last time out with our Peco PL13 frog polarity switches being very intermittent. Plus 3 of

the station platform lights going out ? No idea why ?


Enter June 2019. One of the 12 boards was taken out of it's storage pod, 2 dead lights and the most iffy PL13. Cleaning track

and checking points was fine except that iffy frog switch. My extensive testing showed that it was dead, simply not switching

to either side. Luckily I knew where a new spare was and recovered it from the loft. I don't know if anybody else uses cyno

(Superglue) to hold switches onto their point motors, but mine often fall off. Not this one, it took great care with a Stanley knife

to remove. New switch soldered in fine, all works as it should !!

Now to my station lights. LED's just don't burn out, not on 4.5V anyway. What could have gone wrong ? Can you damage resistors

overheating them during soldering ? I de-soldered, removed the resistor and put 3V through, the light worked fine !! Put a new 1K

resistor in dead ???? I worked on the second failed light and on this one replaced the 1K resistor with a 220R and behold light !! A

little too bright compared to others, but again proving the LED's were fine. I went back to the first and changed to a 220R and that

one works now. What Was Wrong ??? Now I hate to criticize my workmanship, but wonder if I had dry soldered joints ? I'm still

puzzling, but at least it's now ready for exhibition, just another 11 boards to go !!




Note that bright central light, 220R not 1K as the others that, thankfully are still working from original fitting.


Preparing for an exhibition takes time if you want everything spot on - As you should.........

Starting early makes sense.



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