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    Meccano, piano playing, wargames, RPGs, model railways.

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  1. Looks really good, that simulation! The layout has been dormant for much of lockdown: I got involved with other matters and although the virus passed casa Bochi by, there were health issues. On the bright side, my choice of point motor was simplified by the return of Cobalts to these shores so I splashed out on a dozen of those. Now to get on with laying that fiddleyard.
  2. Newton Stewart had a little bay siding on the down line which was used for horse traffic. Originally it was a stabling point for locomotives, before the engine shed was built.
  3. There is a middle ground on files which is to run a Kickstarter-type campaign for them. Say you are offering a range of Caledonian wagon kits (hint hint). You have developed a series of files for them: some are just little tweaks on each other, some are very different from each other. You calculate how much would be a decent recompense and you set that as your funding goal. So perhaps £30 for the set of files, you want to sell a minimum of 300 packages, so you set a goal of £3000. When the target is reached, you will send the files to your customers. This seems to work for a num
  4. Memo to self: try to avoid humping 18mm plywood boards by yourself in future. Especially when trying to race against the threatened rain...
  5. Thanks! Nice to see it in colour. I spy some proud kilt-wearing enthusiasts standing on the signal platform!
  6. It's been a few weeks since I reported progress. During that time I've wrestled with DCC, not having used it before, and blown some old loco motors I was hoping to use. Old motors can be replaced, though, I hope. Also I've been focussed more on the workshop side, with a bench, some tools and sharpening gear and so on. I built a 4ft diameter test track for DC testing and I've laid cork for the fiddleyards and cut out on of the turntables with a router. So next up is to mount the turntable so it's level and moves smoothly. I may finally get to connect some cable at the weekend, but don't ho
  7. Excellent! Now I'm really going to have to work hard to keep up! Your plan looks good: you've got all the main features and I admire the way you've fought to get the overflow siding into the engine shed area. At 30" ruling radius (and a larger area) I couldn't manage it and keep the platform length I wanted, although if I can shave a few inches off there, I still might squeeze it in. I briefly considered a train stacker and felt similarly about my carpentry, although I was tempted to lash out on one of those digital jobs which require a second mortgage. Common sense reeled me in and
  8. Old Hammant and Morgan controller. Tests fine on the multimeter.
  9. Sigh. I've built a test track, a circle of 4th radius set track on a nice solid frame. The Compound runs fine forwards but stutters going backwards. I fiddled with the blanking plate to no avail A previously unused (but quite old) tender driven 4F ran fine for half an hour forwards and then after one good lap in reverse the tender started smoking and now it won't run at all. I'm burning through locomotives just trying to test the little wretches on DC! (It's clearly not the track circuit which is very simple and in any case, ancient warhorses such as my GWR pannier and Bachmann Royal
  10. Latest is that I'm putting together a DC test circle so I can properly run in the locos. Framing a 4' x 4' baseboard for it atm.
  11. I agree, it's probably coincidental - but confusing for a noob! It may be of course that I knocked something while fitting/unfitting the decoder and blank. That seems the most likely explanation.
  12. It's on DC with the blanking plug in place but it still has this graunchy sound coming from the loco when it runs in reverse - sweet as a nut forward though. It is much, much faster on DC (old H&M kit) and doesn't stop and start but powers on through while making its unpleasant noise, which I guess might be a pickup issue? I'll just note that the blanking plug sits in the tender with this model, I've never had the main loco open.
  13. It was running OK on DC before I fitted the decoder. Now it isn't running OK on either.
  14. I got an Ultrics multimeter and once I worked out which end was up and deciphered the Chinglish instructions, got a straight 14v AC reading off the tracks.
  15. Thanks for all the advice which did enable me to track down some mistakes - hadn't installed one decoder properly after all, and misunderstood some aspects of programming. I still have a mechanical issue with the 4-4-0 which has developed a stutter in reverse. It runs (but with a stutter) on DC but in the much slower DCC mode it grinds to a halt with a horrible ratchet sound as the motor, presumably, is spinning or trying to spin without engaging properly.
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