Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

132 Good

Profile Information

  • Location
    Near the Midland Rly 'Old Road', Sheffield

Recent Profile Visitors

97 profile views
  1. Ramps - Assembly Having cut all the necessary bits of timber, these were carefully assembled with screws. No glue here, and it seems none is actually required either . The assembled ramp sections are perfectly strong enough and are very lightweight. Their alignment is particularly good, surprising even, given that I was using some 'secondhand' 5mm plywood was wasn't very flat in either direction! Assembled element - top: Assembled element - underside Stacked elements: That's not quite 'all' the straight elements, there are a few more to cut and assemble, but it's enough for me to 'test fit' them with some support brackets and join them together. That'll be the next job. I also have to make the curved elements ... However, that will require a trip to the timber merchants as I don't think I'll have enough 5mm plywood for those.
  2. Ramps - Some Parts Armed with a stash of 5mm plywood and the Fury 6 (table / chop saw) I set to cutting the base and sides of what were to become the 'H' sections of the ramps. I really was glad to have a table saw at this point . Repeatably cutting numerous 3mm wide lengths of plywood is no fun with only a circular saw and a length of timber as a straight edge. The cutting was over in a matter of minutes , and resulted in sawdust all over the garage floor . Note to self; must get a vacuum to suck up the dust during cutting ... All I had to cut then were some timber 'blocks' to screw the parts together. Back at the chop saw I cut rather a lot of 20mm slices in some 44x18mm section timber. Each ramp section was going to need ~10 to 12 blocks, times 10 ramp straight sections, is a lot. More sawdust ... lots of it ... At the car boot last weekend I did spy a cheap (and new ...) simple vacuum consisting of a large tin with a motor & filter inside and a suction pipe. Me thinks I need to see if it is still available ...
  3. Ramps - The Design The simplified drawing below shows the various parts of the ramps; the 2-track (green) and the 3-track (blue). The parts not show are those connecting the ramps to the lower level baseboards (3-track to Baseboard A, and 2-track to Baseboard H). I haven't yet decided on 'how' to make this connection. Ideas include: Cutting the lower level baseboard and 'bending it up' to form the ramp Building an 'embankment' in plywood on the lower level baseboard Any other / better ideas welcomed, but they have to accommodate a joint (bolted) to the ramp at the extremity of the baseboard to allow disassembly. [Letters A to J are the lower level Baseboard designations]. Now, with the requisite dimensions and suitable tools (Fury 6 - see previous posting), I can get on with making the easier straight elements of the ramps.
  4. Ramps - The Prototype It seemed a good idea to at least 'try' to build a few parts of the ramp to see how the bits went together and if my proposed joining method would work. The joining piece, that will be attached to a support/shelf bracket, is at the bottom of the photo. The 'cut out' is to fit around the shape of the pressed steel shelf bracket. What this did prove was that the jointing method was 'fiddly' to make (to get it perfectly aligned), but would work, and that the alternative construction method for the main ramp sections (essentially an 'H' section of 5mm plywood) was preferable to 12mm plywood with 5mm cheeks (heavy & potentially expensive). It also helped that I had a large sheet of 5mm plywood in the garage . It also proved that my minimal powertools (a circular saw and a jigsaw) would not be sufficient for 'series production' . However, while at my local B&Q for other reasons I came across an Evolution Fury 6; a sort of combined chop-saw and table-saw in a single unit. After looking through a few online reviews I decided to get one, while they were still available (out-of-stock or low-stock in my area).
  5. Brian, Wouldn't you be better using enamelled wire (I took some out of an old transformer that was broken) as it is typically finer and maybe wouldn't need a tube for attachment. Just be careful to label each of the wires as they will all be the same colour!
  6. Harry, If it helps, I've built my baseboards and baseboard supports to be 'dismantleable'. The support framework is screwed together, and the baseboards bolted together; all using off-the-shelf bits. No glue involved at all. I posted a few photos in my layout page https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/133913-burton-on-trent-south-trains-running/&do=findComment&comment=3297829. Look at entries from 12 September 2018.
  7. If you have a Hobbycraft shop nearby you can go and actually see the disc cutter in the shop. Details online at: https://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/cricut-rotary-blade-kit/640204-1000 Based on being 12mm diameter, and the disc being exposed, and allowing for the axle pin, it looks like it would cut through 4mm or maybe 5mm thickness before the axle would 'snag' on the material being cut. So I'd image in would cut foam type materials of this thickness. Not sure how it would cope with styrene though.
  8. Tim, I'm using a Cricut Explore Air and, although I've not made full use of it yet, it's done everything I've wanted very well. The cutting force is enough to cut 0.25mm styrene and I think it would cut 0.5mm at a push (with multiple passes). I found the following review / comparison and the Maker does indeed seem to be an impressive machine, but there's a price to pay. https://personaldiecutting.com/cricut-maker-vs-cricut-explore-air-2/ Just be aware that both machines use Bluetooth for communication and the 'drawing' software is totally web-based, so you need a good internet connection. You can try out the Cricut software without a machine by downloading it from: http://uk.cricut.com/home/learn/software/design-space Personally, I do all my 'drawing' on my computer in Xara DesignerPro because that's what I'm familiar with. I then export the drawing as an SVG file and load that into DesignSpace for final editing and actual cutting.
  9. Very true, but in my case I'm limited in the vertical axis as the veroboards are mounted on a panel with holes cut for the LEDs and momentary button switch. Yes, I could mount them on the 'underside' but I can't see where I could get the 2 wires through. I think my solution (in the marked up photos) or the surface-mount method are the ways to go.
  10. Hmmm, surface mount resistors . Not sure about that. I did solder some 0805 LEDs previously and that was hard enough. If I can get physically 'larger' surface mount resistors I might be tempted. Although I would use normal resistors for all 'testing' to get the right value / brightness. The LEDs are both facing the same way round for the turnouts they applied to, as I have to be careful on that front . The actual 'direction' is a bit hit-n-miss, as left / right get mixed up on the MegaPoints Controller depending on LH / RH turnouts as I always set the 'normal' position to straight (leaving the frog polarity microswitch 'open' and not in contact with the servo actuator arm). That's one reason I used sockets for the LEDs - easy to turn them round . And the sockets also raised the LEDs to the same height as the momentary switch for panel mounting.
  11. Nigel, Thanks you for the idea(s) and the prompt . Actually, Track 2 is 'common' to both LEDs so that's the better / simpler place to locate a single resistor. I like your idea for Track 3, so I'm thinking of applying that to just Track 2 as follows: The only problem then is that I have to do this 33-times .
  12. David, 2nd attempt at a reply. RMWEb went down as I was typing ... Probably easier to add resistors to tone down the LEDs. Greens need different resistors to Reds for equal brightness. That was my thought, but fitting one in not exactly easy. If you look in my little Veroboards, there is no space to add a resistor (well, not elegantly anyway). Or is there? As you can see from the other photos, I use dupont type connectors / terminals for all the wiring. I'm wondering if there is an simple way to add a resistor into the cable?? Also LEDs vary from batch to batch, buy a load at one hit for mimic panels where you want equal brightness, buy any old random tat for building lights which you want to vary in brightness and hue. All my LEDs came from the same supplier in the same batch and are the same, green, colour. I only have one that is brighter than the others. Yes, there are all too bright, but one manages to be even brighter. I did change the LED, but it made no difference. I can only assume that one of the resistors on the MegaPoints Controller is slightly out-of-spec. I would use DPDTs to operate the points with a separate operate push button myself. That way one side of the DPDT throws the point, when prodded the other lights the appropriate Mimic LED all the time . Saves a lot of wiring back from the point motors. With the MegaPoints controller boards there is very little cabling to/from the mimic board. Just 2-wires for power and 3-wires for the network. See photo below. That's all. One of the main reasons I went with MegaPoints Controller, simple wiring and plug-n-play (ish) simplicity. As for the buttons, these can only be Momentary type as that is what the MegaPoints Controller board is compatible with. Cheap as well at less than 10p each.
  13. Ramps By which I mean those tracks between the Upper (at a nominal 0mm) and Lower (at a nominal -350mm) baseboards. Getting this to work has been something of a challenge. I eventually realised that for this to work the Upper level could not be 'flat', it has to have some slope(s) built into it for the tracks to go 'underneath themselves' at some point. Drawing the layout of the ramps necessitated knowing the exact location of the Ramp Tracks in relation to the vertical baseboard support structure. This I drew up in Xara DesignerPro as below: At each vertical support the ramp baseboards are to be split to allow segmented construction and removal as required. Each join will be supported on a small steel shelf angle (pressed steel type) obtained on-the-cheap from B&Q a while back. With all the 'offsets' from the vertical baseboard support now known I could draw the layout up properly as below. The two views are from opposite ends of the room: Finally, from the coordinate information in layout drawing and the known locations of the vertical baseboard supports I was able to calculate the height of the ramp tracks above the Lower Level baseboards. That involved quite a complicated Excel Spreadsheet that I made 'fully automatic' in that it will recalculate everything based on the basic input data (makes it simple to change if I want to alter any input data). In the end I managed to get gradients of 1 in 39 for Connection 1 (3-tracks) and 1 in 46 for Connection 2 (2-tracks). Not bad, and should be suitable for the diesel fleet of locomotives.
  14. Jeff, You mean like this stuff? See attachment. It's what I'm using for my layout.
  15. There's someone on the Bay-of-E selling one, and the accompanying photos show the turnout drawing. See: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/O-GAUGE-MARCWAY-3-WAY-POINT-KIT-COMPATIBLE-WITH-PECO/133063568050?hash=item1efb34eab2:g:kngAAOSwQ0Fc6Unl Maybe there's enough information available for you?
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.