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Everything posted by Harlequin

  1. In addition to Mike's invaluable discourse on goods handling there is a useful series of books on the subject: Atkins' "GWR Goods Train Working" (Vols 1 & 2) and "GWR Goods Cartage" (Vols 1 & 2) all published by Crecy.
  2. Hi Dave, It's a shame they aren't taking orders because the Kitwood 48ft looks perfect for you, IMHO. If your Dean overhangs the ends slightly, while the wheelbase is fully on board that would only enhance the Edwardian feel of an old turntable just starting to get overtaken by loco developments! I read somewhere about a turntable that was simply driven by a normal loco motor controlled by a normal DCC loco decoder. I seem to remember the author saying that he didn't bother with "indexing" to get the rails lined up, he found it was simple to just "drive" it by eye. And the advantages of controlling it via DCC are that you already have all the control system, you have nice back EMF motor control and you can even set up acceleration and deceleration of the movement if you want. To power the rails and cope with polarity in a DCC system is really easy - just feed them through an "AutoReverser". It will change phase as soon as the loco wheels touch the fixed tracks (if it needs to) and keep your sound running all the time.
  3. The two turnouts against the inner platform face might cause problems of vehicles with long overhangs fouling the platform. 610mm (24inch) radii and above should work fine at normal Streamline spacing (51mm) for most rolling stock. Only very long coaches or locos with long noses, like the APT, might have a problem with it. If you went to Streamline and Flexitrack, you could escape the Setrack straightjacket and make everything more flowing and realistic. The investment in the layout over the years will far exceed any small saving you might make now by using existing Setrack parts you have so it might be a false economy to stick with it...
  4. A crossing loop, such as the one at Lampeter, is where a single track line splits into two parallel lines for a distance before rejoining to form the single line again. The section of double track allows trains approaching from opposite directions to pass each in a carefully controlled way (thus, also known as a "passing loop"). Whereas the single track line is bidirectional, each side of a crossing loop is usually directional with trains keeping to the left in the conventional British way. Thus, within the crossing loop, points don't have to be facing the direction of movement and the railway companies tried to avoid facing points wherever possible for safety and economy.
  5. That's really interesting! Thanks Mike. (Mike, @The Stationmaster, is a huge help on this forum with more in depth knowledge of G(WR) working than almost anyone.) Notice that the 1948 NLS map doesn't seem to show the milk siding opposite the yard (as far as I can see, anyway). Edit: Further, "A Historical Survey of Great Western Stations Vol. 1" shows that there were four sidings in the yard on the down side in 1913 and that the up siding was present at least from 1913 to c. 1958.
  6. Here's a map of Lampeter in 1948, the last 6 inch map for the area in the NLS: https://maps.nls.uk/view/101608555 There's a loop between the platforms and 3 small goods sidings. In general terms the loco is using the loop to run round its train (it's the only place that it can run round at this station), remove the brake van from the back and select specific wagons, vans and tankers to move into and out of the goods yard sidings. Others can say more about the specifics.
  7. Hi Kevin, Have you thought about using a parabolic reflector to try to get more directional light, a bit more like direct sunlight? I don't know if it would work for model photography but I think you'd need what they call a "deep umbrella" and maybe a smaller light source, something like an LED filament bulb. (I'm imagining Encombe in the sunshine with the sunlight glinting off the copper chimney cap of a speeding express and sharp shadows under the platform canopies...)
  8. The danger is that working out the lore might be wasted if you haven’t got enough space to then represent the place(s) you’ve invented... You might need a space at least the size of a double garage to hold what you’ve described at 4mm scale.
  9. How big can the layout be, @ForeverAutumn? And what scale will it be?
  10. Look at the pressure the tender is putting on the loco! The rear springs are fully compressed and the coupling rod looks like it will hit the running plate if she tries to move forwards. The coupling between tender and loco must have taken a lot of strain in this operation and With the obvious practical and safety problems you can see why larger turntables were a much better solution. (Edit: Reconsidered my statement after thinking a bit more about what I was seeing... The coupling rods being outside the running plate can probably move without fouling it and the springs don't look overly compressed.)
  11. A great read. Thankyou to everyone involved. I started reading last weekend indoors while the weather was bad but completed it this weekend outside on the lawn in the sun. Very pleasant! I hope there will be more. Quarterly might be good...?
  12. @BMacdermott Hi Brian, Could you make a video of the behaviour and post it here so we can see it for ourselves? That might give someone a new clue.
  13. I searched http://oldpway.info/ (using Google because their own search is not working yet) and the only references I could find were to four items held by the NRM - i.e. modern descriptions of old equipment.
  14. SGF has it right, as far as I can tell. There is agreement here, for instance: https://www.trainshop.co.uk/blog/post/419-why-are-turnout-frogs-called-frogs.html
  15. It's been done! It's online and there are references to it from RMWeb, if you can educe the correct search term...
  16. Hornby are very nicely clearing a space in the market for competitors to step in... If you want to sell exclusively online, if some of your products are deemed to compete with Hornby, if you don't want to sell Airfix and other non-railway gubbins, if you can't afford snazzy retail premises, if you don't want to be under the control of the authoritarian regime, whose products do you sell? You need a new supplier. This could be the catalyst that forces people like Rails, Hattons and Dapol to form an even closer alliance and really take Hornby on at manufacturing. No need to hold back any more.
  17. How about using the 11ft wall almost exclusively for the scenic part, turning the corner and having a removable fiddle yard of some form (fold down, cassettes, fiddle sticks, whatever), along the 7ft 6in wall? The FY may be all or partly above the bed, depending on how you orient it, and if it's not too annoying you could probably leave it set up for long periods.
  18. I basically agree but I think it could be made to work quite well if you were using cassettes. Cassettes only need support at each end: at one end the layout connection and the other could be just a bar that is hinged to the wall. You'd need to make sure that the cassette connection to the layout is engineered to be very quick and simple. Then it would be possible to simply lift a whole train from storage, connect it to the layout and start to operate. If you're already using cassettes to store whole trains setting up to run is then not that different to just exchanging stock anyway and cassettes have the huge advantage of being able to be stored in a space-efficient wall rack.
  19. If you want to be a successful manufacturer but you have supply chain problems do you, A. Fix the supply chain and try to meet the demand for your products or B. Pass the problems on to your retailers and end-customers ?
  20. Hi Gordon, Get better and get back to Eastwood Town soon!
  21. Hi Ellis, The two level idea definitely adds some visual interest to the design but you might need to think about the operating interest as well, especially on the upper level. It depends if you and your son are interested in operations, of course. On the other hand, if electronics and automation is of interest then the upper level would be great place for a semi-automated shuttle service running back and forth all on it's own while human operations concentrate on the lower area. If the short arm is a fiddle yard, not just a storage yard then you need to be able to get your hands on the rolling stock and in that case hiding it behind factory buildings and running the high level tracks above the lower might not be a good idea.
  22. I guess that while the wiring was wrong the behaviour could be explained by the decoder keeping the Motor- connection isolated until the throttle was opened. Then it tried to enable M+ and M- but because M+ was also connected directly to the DCC signal some sort of half-rectification took place (or maybe waveform interference?) allowing the motor to run at constant speed. It works fine now that I've fixed the wiring. I just need to get it all back together... Lesson learned.
  23. You were absolutely spot on! It was poor assembly, look at this: Telltale unused M+ solder pad on top and when you look underneath Motor+ is connected directly to Rail Right... Thanks again!
  24. Thanks. The on/off running and the medium speed running make it feel like a digital control problem rather than an analogue wiring problem but I will check the electrics, of course. I will report back.
  25. Here's the MX638 installed: The capacitor appears to be installed by Bachmann as standard. It is connected to the main motherboard. Could the running problems be related to that?
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