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Everything posted by Lecorbusier

  1. I have been playing around with working point rodding on my test track. It is a very simple arrangement, and is made much easier by going down the protocab route so I don't have to worry about electrified track. However it has been an interesting experiment and something I will pursue. It has been up and running for a couple of years now. It works using 0.5 nickel silver wire ... this is run through some modelu stools which have capillary tube bonded in to the top of them. The cranks are Ambis etches and the compensator is home made. It is currently rigged up to a simple track side lever cobbled together using scrap etch and a bit of rail. The stools prevent deflection of the wire and I have a couple of omega loops to prevent damage whilst maintaining the pressure ... the friction in the system is sufficient to keep the switches positively engaged.
  2. Hi David, No I have no experience ... I thought the milky version was still current. It was Pete's post above which prompted a quick google search.
  3. If the picture is anything to go by then Pledge "revive it" would appear to be clear and not milky? I also purchased a bottle of the milky formula and didn't get on with it.
  4. Thanks Andrew, When cleaning the 'chassis' I found that the axles when sliding through the horn blocks after they had been dropped out of the guides were sticky and when in the wrong position caught slightly ... as if there was a small piece of grit locking things. By spinning the wheel it all freed up again, but would catch occasionally. After cleaning this no longer happened. However, without any lubrication it runs smoothly but not as loosely as it did with. I am concerned about not using a lubricant due to potential longer term wear issues. The clock oil I have used to date is the one sold by Eileens
  5. Can I ask some advice on smooth running. On my 1F I got the chassis running nice and smoothly to my satisfaction. I put a small drop of fine clock oil on each of the bearings and also the crank rod bearings, followed by some running in. I then turned my attention to fine detailing the body with the chassis sitting towards the back of my workbench. On completion I assembled everything and had a play. After a while I found the running getting a little 'sticky'. Now .... as nothing had changed from the original set up I deduced that some of the filing dust/scratch brush dust might well have got in to the mechanism. I stripped the chassis down and gave everything a thorough clean. I seem to have been right in my diagnosis as the chassis is running smoothly again. Should I look to lubricate again? and if so using what? I am pretty sure that the oil attracted the contamination and I can see no reason why this will not happen again over time.
  6. Super Dumb sums it up in a nut shell ..... but there it is! It may be used as a comeback following criticism of poor running .... but that is just silly .... the first is objective fact and the second is not! Want to avoid the criticism of poor running .... sort the running out .... or take it on the chin and move on.
  7. Hi Andrew, That seems wholly reasonable. Unfortunately I have heard the term bandied around in jest as a put down of 00 modelling .... and in this context I find it somewhat tiresome.
  8. Clive, Whilst I enjoy playing occasionally, I do find I tire of it relatively quickly nowadays and do not find it particularly more-ish. Primarily I love the modelling aspect, which is why I am perhaps more tolerant of iffy running than many. What I do find I like is watching (and I suspect would thoroughly enjoy operating given the chance) is a well worked out time table of running with plenty of real railway interest - maybe this is a form of playing? Again I suspect that this enjoyment is intellectual as much as anything .... along with seeing a job done skilfully and well. From an observers point of view I do find watching skill in whatever form it takes somewhat mesmeric. The great thing about model railways, is that there does seem to be a niche for most tastes, skill levels and approaches. As such, just because tinplate is not for me I don't particularly judge or criticise it .... it is what it is and under its own terms seems to me to be excellent. Time methinks to stop talking about me! .... not really all that interesting to be truthful.
  9. Whilst this is true, The excellent photographs massively magnify the fact .... and even then I contend that it is the width of track which makes the main impression and not the wheels themselves. Martin Goodall on Burford is modelling his track in P4 whilst using EM wheels for reliability. It would be an interesting exercise (if it were possible which it perhaps isn't) to see who could tell without very detailed study - whilst the layout was operating and running a schedule - if the wheels were P4 or EM, and for that matter if the track gauge was EM or P4? I suspect very few.
  10. I fully accept that this may be an over reaction so apologies .... but ..... 'steamroller wheels', ..... bicycle wheels? The term steamroller wheels has always seemed to me to be a tad rude even in jest .... bicycle wheels doesn't quite cut it as a commensurate riposte! Furthermore, steamroller is a bizarre description for a finally crafted and elegant piece of modelling - which is what Markits 00 finescale wheels are. 00 fine scale might have deeper flanges, but these are hardly visible on a layout. As far as wheels are concerned, when comparing fine scale 00 with P4, I contend that on a layout you have to look hard to see the difference and even then you need to be close up. When stock is moving, the differences become irrelevant. Perhaps it is the close up Photograph which should be held responsible for the bruhaha. If you are creating a model for a display cabinet or placing a loco wheeled in P4 directly next to one using 00 Finescale for detailed comparison, you might choose the P4 due to visual preference - but that is not the comparison being made on layouts. I do think that 18mm track work is visually better than 00 and that a loco viewed head on has a better (more prototypical) stance within the wider gauges, but neither of these things has anything at all to do with 'steamroller wheels'. I also contend that as far as the wider gauges are concerned, you are going to be very hard pushed to tell any difference visually between EM and P4 on separate layouts - unless again you artificially set one directly next to the other - and even then many will struggle. For what it is worth I model in P4 primarily because I find it intellectually satisfying, in much the same way that I model details which often you would be hard pushed to see and arguably add not one bit to the overall impression. I do this purely for my own enjoyment. It does not effect one jot my admiration and enjoyment of other layouts in other gauges ... and interestingly there are a fair few P4 modellers who model at the same time in other 4mm gauges ..... horses for courses?. I for one would be extremely happy never to hear the pejorative term 'steamroller wheels' again.
  11. That makes sense ... so presumably the more wheels the greater the spread of weight and as such should a wheel start to slip it is likely to have a less pronounced impact on the other wheels? I remember reading somewhere that it takes far greater force to cause a wheel to slip than to maintain it slipping. Do I take it that all else being equal - and given that steam unlike an internal combustion engine is not reliant on RPM to prevent stalling - the size of the drivers is somewhat irrelevant apart from allowing the spreading of the weight for a given size or allowing a greater top speed?
  12. I am getting myself totally confused here. I always understood that large drivers meant high speed but potential issues with adhesion. As such the issue was more about the capability of being able to utilise the power available rather than the power itself? .... particularly when starting on an incline? Similarly I thought that smaller wheels and many drivers meant that due to the lower gearing there was less inclination to slip and with the increased number of points of contact greater adhesion? That being the case I had always understood the 9F to be perhaps the swan song as far as efficiency and available power was concerned on steam hauled heavy goods workings. I was always rather surprised that it was recorded on occasion as having a reasonable turn of speed as well. I also read somewhere that the LMS Duchesses had potentially massive power, but that they were limited by the capability of the fireman to feed the huge fire box? As I said, I do not speak with any authority or depth of knowledge on any of this. It would be good to get a better handle on things.
  13. Having very limited knowledge on these matters, I would be interested to know how they compare in terms of efficiency? Were the Pacifics notably more expensive to run? Also would I be right in assuming that we are not comparing like for like either? Weren't the 9Fs primarily designed for heavy goods, where as the Pacifics were designed for express work or do I have that wrong? If that is indeed the case then it would be startling if either could equal the other on their own patch?
  14. Although this is not what you were referring to, I have a real dilemma about the hand in the sky. I know I am in a minority, but I really do like correct couplings on trains and even find Alan Jackson couplings something of a visual jolt ... particularly when shunting and this wholly unrealistic magic force causes them to descend and uncouple. I accept that they are very discrete and very clever if somewhat difficult to ensure faultless operation over time ... but for me they just don't feel right. But then the only other option is a large hand descending from above (preferably with a nicely made shunters pole) coupling and uncoupling the stock. Now in some ways this is very prototypical as it is very much what happens on the real thing. It will also ensure that there is a sensible time allocated to such actions ... but for the viewer the pretence is shattered. Interestingly, the pretence is probably enhanced for the operator from a role playing standpoint. On balance i think I actually prefer an oversized hand with a shunting pole and the correct 3 link couplings rather than some form of wholly unrealistic automatic system .... but if I'm honest, for exhibition purposes rather than playing trains, all options are something of a bodge.
  15. Inarguable ... but I wonder how entertaining? So long as no one was hurt, a few derailments might add to the mix? Witness the entertainment value of the trap points here ....though of course this wasn't poor track work or badly built stock but rather operator error! I have seen Burntisland on two occasions now, and both times the stock continually derailed down towards the harbour end. There was also the occasional sticky loco. Would I like to watch the layout with perfect running .... you bet. Does the less than perfect running frustrate ... absolutely. Would I rather see Burntisland with less than perfect running or not see it at all ... I would plump for less than perfect running every time - it has so much to offer on so many other fronts. Do I find it inspirational ... very much so. Shall I try to emulate the poorer elements of the running qualities .... not if I can help it. Anyway .... moving on ....
  16. In my limited experience of show attendance I have experienced the same. It is certainly frustrating and ruins the illusion. My only comment would be that as a modeller who attends shows to hopefully learn and certainly to enjoy the modelling, the drama and make believe of the operation only forms part of the reasons I go (and not the main part as for myself I would get far more entertainment from actually operating the layouts). On a couple of layouts over the past 3 years, which I had been very interested and keen to see, I can report that the running was far from satisfactory and I did not spend much time watching the trains. However, both were very nicely modelled with marvellous landscaping and representations of buildings. The observation of the track and accompanying paraphernalia was also superb, and the quality of the rolling stock and locos in terms of detail, painting and weathering were also of a very high order. In both cases I therefore spent a lot of time studying the layout itself whilst letting the train movements carry on in the background. Not a good situation if you come to shows to be entertained by the 'live show', but from my perspective thoroughly enjoyable and inspirational non the less. Having everything is obviously optimal ... at Scaleforum I spent a long time watching and studying Pulborough & London Road both of which ran faultlessly .... but for myself given the choice I would rather see a fine piece of modelling with the annoyance of gremlins than a so so piece of modelling with perfect running.
  17. I couldn't comment about DCC, my knowledge of how simple or complex DC is for such manoeuvres is pretty much non existent - though I did understand from your original post that you were arguing that it was complex and so needed skilled operators ..... but then this perhaps has more to do with the operations themselves and not the operating system? On the protocab (radio control) front, I am very much at the start so again it is difficult for me to comment .... with the new controller you have a digital screen display with the names of the various locos (as many as you want) and you simply press to select the loco you want (on my controller I am currently limited to nine locos) .... so I don't think there are many buttons to press. The nice thing perhaps is that you can have a separate driver for each train running who is solely responsible for that train. If you then have good signalmen as well it seems to me that you have a fair representation of the real thing going on?
  18. Ahhh .... the joys of Protocab and battery operation. It allows me to do all of this with 1/10th of the skill and I am driving the actual train rather than the track! I would love to have a go on Buckingham, and get to know how such complex manoeuvres are achieved ... but equally there is something viscerally satisfying about actually driving the locomotive with no impact on any other locomotive (in principle).
  19. Thanks very much for the thorough answer Jol ... very helpful and informative.
  20. Tony, An absolutely fantastic check list ... I've immediately printed it off - Thanks
  21. As someone who hopes in due course to build a layout which will be exhibited if it attracts any interest, This question interests me quite a lot. With your long experience Tony, do you have any comments or thoughts on those layouts which you have been actively involved with? I also wonder if a large layout is not at a disadvantage here unless it is the beneficiary of either large club rooms or a large railway room. I would have thought it imperative to be able to actively work on a layout fully assembled between shows to iron out gremlins if they manifest. Primarily I wondered if transporting a layout (with all the knocks and juddering this involves) and then erecting it in what might be very different environmental conditions to that at home, meant that there is an element of a lottery about shows?
  22. I would be interested in thoughts/comments by those who are able to attend shows regularly (unfortunately at the moment I can't). Is there variation in the quality of running of the same layouts at different shows, or are the good ones generally always good and the bad ones bad? More to the point .... having seen a layout run faultlessly on one occasion, does it tend to run faultlessly from there on in, or do things ever go wrong? I ask because I would assume that different show conditions could effect layouts in different ways and also thoroughness of setting up/trouble shooting might suffer over a busy period? ... not that this should be an excuse. My own smallish test track, once I got it properly up and running appears pretty consistent as does the stock once the same process has been gone through - but these are always run under the same conditions.
  23. I like ply for two reasons ... firstly I think it takes paint/stain better and so is easier to make convincing; secondly you can buy uncut lengths as well as the pre-cut standard runs and this gives flexibility when working out sleeper arrangements for pointwork etc - varying lengths and widths etc etc. Having said that, it is probably really just a matter of preference. One advantage I like is that the chairs are fixed down with butanone which grips into the grain .. so because the bond is weaker than onto plastic, it is possible to adjust and change things even after bonding, which can be a godsend.
  24. Thought I would post a few pictures of the state of play on my Johnson 1F tank build as I now think it is about ready for a thorough clean up in preparation for a coat of etch primer. I have to say I have had a lot of fun fabricating up the various details visible in the prototype photo. I will see if I can post a short video of it running under battery power in due course. A steep learning curve still ... but fantastically rewarding and you definitely can't buy one like it RTR.
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