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Caley Jim

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  • Location
    Biggar, South Lanarkshire
  • Interests
    Caledonian Railway 1885-1915 modelling in 2fs

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  1. Hi Rich, On your first question, the point rail was generally the one on the main route, which might not always be on the straight route, (e.g. a loop coming off the outside of a curve). Of course on a curved turnout or a 'Y' there is no 'straight' route! Secondly, like Izzy, I have no experience of the Association jigs (I made some of my own for filing the crossing rails and switches), but your second attempt looks the better one to me. If you run your finger along the tapered edge of the point rail, you should be barely able to feel where the splice rail starts. As I said earlier, the tip of the splice rail should be at, or just beyond, the end of the taper on the point rail. You DO NOT want it to be nearer to the tip of the point rail as this will create a 'step' which will catch the wheel flanges. Its tip needs to be sitting tightly against the point rail. I have always built my track directly in situ straight on top of the Templot drawing. I lay the two stock rails first and then position the tip of the point rail using two button gauges, after which I fix the splice rail in position again using a button gauge between its tip and the opposite stock rail and either a roller gauge between the other end and the stock rail or, more often, a short length of Easitrac sleepers slid onto both at that end. If you have the Magazine back number file (another mine of information) look at my articles on P4 of the February 2012 and P71 of the August/September 2012 issues. Jim
  2. On CR (Stevens) signals the cast iron spectacle plate weighed 30lbs, much heavier than the arm, and so returned the signal to danger. The arm was connected by a rod to a lever with a balance weight on it around 4'6" below the arm. the purpose of the balance weight was to maintain tension in the signal wire when it had been returned to danger. Jim
  3. Ultrasonic cleaners work by 'cavitation'. They produce what are essentially vacuum bubbles which implode and as a result remove any debris on the surface of the object. Other than the requirement to neutralise any acid flux, water should work equally well. I use solder paint for most of my soldering and clean things up by spraying them with one of the proprietary domestic cleaners, such as 'Mr Muscle', giving things a light brush with a stiff artists brush and then a good rinse. It always brings the metal up very bright. Jim
  4. I use thinned down DAS for the top covering, with a little PVA mixed in and coloured to suit with powder or artist's acrylic paints. Light and flexible and easily repaired if it get damaged. It will also soften again when wetted, so easy to blend a new bit into an existing area, although this probably means that it's not a good idea for a layout in a damp environment! Jim
  5. Angus, you don't need to have a switch to change from DC to DCC. Just unplug the one controller and plug in the other one! Jim
  6. Agreed on both counts, Chris, but I was speaking in general terms in response to Justin's post. Jim
  7. If you grip the wheel on the far side firmly between finger and thumb of your left hand and then use a watchmakers screwdriver inserted between the spokes of the wheel you want to move, I find you can achieve very fine adjustments fairly easily. Always works for me! Jim
  8. Sorry if I've caused any offence. It was meant to be tongue-in-cheek, hence the 'jester' emoticon. Jim
  9. Should that not be n+x? (where x is any number up to, and including, infinity) Jim
  10. As Keefer says, hand operated points were not linked to any signals. Movements over them were controlled by whoever was in charge of shunting operations, yard foreman, shunter, even perhaps the fireman, with hand signals being used to indicate when the required road was set. The ground signals would control movements which interfered with running lines and were controlled by the signal box, with the usual interlocking with the relevant turnouts. Jim
  11. It's actually 'Auld Reekie', but I'll let you off this time (but only this once, mind!). Anyway, I hope you enjoyed your sojourn to that city in the east which we from the west hesitate to name. (a bit like 'The Scottish Play!) Jim
  12. Following on from Mark's comments (which I entirely endorse). When manning the roadshow stand at exhibitions up here (mainly Model Rail Scotland and Perth) I usually spend my time productively by assembling one of my etched kits and I've found that I spend more time answering questions about, and giving advice on, soldering than talking about 2FS! It's one of those things which seems to have taken on the air of a 'black art', but can be easily mastered with a little patience and following good practice. Having someone demonstrate is a great help. As I have said recently elsewhere on this section, it's important to understand that what you are doing is creating a thin alloy layer comprising the metal you are soldering and the solder and then uniting these two thin layers. This requires clean metal, flux and heat and the heat has to be maintained long enough for the solder to flow. The parts need to then be kept in position for a few seconds until they cool enough for the solder to solidify. Making a quick stab with the iron, no matter how hot, will rarely produce a successful joint. Jim
  13. That B&W photo does seem to show the downward and inward slope to the end of the front buffer beam. Jim
  14. The proportions certainly look much better on the new drawing. Jim
  15. We----ell. I've had a frustrating time with this over the festive season, to the point that i ta'en a scunner to it at one point! The wheels went into the chassis fine and with the coupling rods fitted temporarily, having reamed the holes a little, and the quartering adjusted I got the wheels turning freely. Fitting the footplate assembly was a different story, however. Lots of problems with the wheel flanges fouling the splashers, the rear wheels fouling the footplate cut-outs under the cab and the tops of the oil boxes on the couplig rods hitting the underside of the footplate where i had added reinforcement, Dental stones and burs in the minidrill created some spaces for them, but they still had to be reduced in height. Once i got that lot sorted out there were still shorts occurring and they were only eliminated by lining everything which was anywhere near the wheels with tissue fixed with cyano. Then there was the cab splashers. The clearance between their inside faces and the backs of the rear wheels was negligible, so they were taken out (after removing the cab floor) and an 'L' shaped piece of etch frame from a corner soldered to their outside edges before re-attaching them. this was enough to do the trick. The front section of the cab floor then needed to be reduced in width to fit back in between the splashers and, of course, the lower part of the backhead was also now too wide! There were also issues with the coupling rods fouling the brake pull rods at bottom dead centre, As I say I got fair scunnert with it for a few days, but perseverance and determination won through in the end and she is now running!! The Paint shop awaits after the Forth & Clyde area group meeting on Saturday. Jim
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