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Posts posted by rynd2it

  1. I'm planning a GWR branch terminus layout based on Faringdon and I am thinking about the fiddle yard. To keep expense and complexity down and provide maximum storage space I have decided a traverser of 5 roads is probably the way to go. 90% of the locos are going to be typical GWR pannier tanks which just need to change ends on the train but I also have a Dean Goods so I would like to be able to turn it round. I want to minimise the BHS (big hand in sky) and physical handling of the stock but I need a train length of 3 coaches or 10 wagons plus loco. All has to fit on a 4'  x 2' baseboard.


    I see the issues as needing a headshunt to decouple the loco and run it round the train but this implies a headshunt of about 10" at each end leaving only just over 2' 4" for train storage. One solution might be to have one headshunt on the scenic board disguised by a cutting and a bridge but it would need to be long enough to hide any 'shunting' movements.


    Any other ideas please?




  2. 14 hours ago, melmerby said:

    I have two of these DRCs

    One is the recent Dapol# version which comes with lighting already in place so there is little to set up.

    The other is an original Lima version*. I have fitted interior & cab lighting but not yet marker lights.


    *It's got a replacement Black Beetle motor bogie in place of the awful Lima pancake motor.

    # the Dapol one has the option of using a (dummy) tail lamp in place of the red rear light

    I have just obtained a replacement motor for the Parcels version and I'm also adding DCC, the Hornby is DCC ready. And then converting to EM gauge as well.


    I did find a good link for head codes:



    so two whites would seem appropriate for the Hornby and maybe a single white for the parcels DRC.



  3. On 31/08/2020 at 21:47, melmerby said:

    The one by the logo is red, AFAIK all others are white.

    The white lights approximate to normal loco headlights although the DRCs are usually depicted with the outer pair lit (express passenger).

    (I suppose some workings could be considered stopping trains and may need a different lamp arrangement alight)


    Which period are you depicting?

    Under BR the normal practice seemed to be a standard oil lamp for the tail, rather than using the electric lamp.







    That's very helpful, thanks. My model period is likely to be immediate pre or post- WWII, so still GWR, and the two railcars I have are the later ones, not the original streamlined one. One of them is the Express Parcels - I'll check the head codes for that one.





  4. 15 minutes ago, melmerby said:

    The white lights always show to the front, a red light to the rear in direction the unit is travelling (either way)





    Yes, I know that but which of the middle lights are used to indicate red, the lower one by the logo or the one above the windscreen?


  5. 22 minutes ago, melmerby said:

    There isn't a "rear", both ends are the same.

    There is an A end & a "B" end because the internal layout isn't symmetrical but the cab ends with the lights are the same.

    Yes, as I said above.

    But how were they used?


  6. On closer examination, the Hornby version has the lower lights painted silver on both ends, a red light in the middle just below the windscreen and another just above the windscreen not painted. The Lima version is similar but no paint on any of the lights.


    Now to find out how the GWR actually used them.



  7. 8 minutes ago, melmerby said:

    The real GWR Railcar had 3 lights, a pair of white lights either side inline with the buffers and a central red light as modelled in the Dapol DRC

    You don't need dual colour LEDs

    The actual position varied depending which series railcar and they sometimes carried a normal oil lamp on a bracket.





    You may well be right, problem is that I can't find an image of the rear of one any where. The Hornby one has one end with the lower lamps painted red. Confusing



  8. Thanks for that but it uses separate LED for red and white. The railcar seems to have only one lamp (or pair of lamps) each end which glows alternately red or white depending on direction of travel. In 12" to 1 foot gauge this is probably a dual filament bulb but the only bi-colour LED I can find is a 2mm one which may prove to be too large.


    Anyone done this on regular diesel loco for example?



  9. I'm willing to bet there is a simple answer to this but I can't find it.  I have a loco (actually a GWR railbus) which will go in either direction and I wish to add lights to both ends such that when going forward to front lights are white and the rear red. When in reverse the lights should change accordingly but how?





  10. Thanks for all the input, very useful stuff indeed.


    My main reason for getting into DCC was to reduce the amount and complexity of the wiring after my last project (an OO9 layout with 27 turnouts, working semaphore signals, lighting etc). If I plan properly on my next project it should be much simpler.


    Once again thanks, all questions answered.



    • Like 2
  11. I have just started to use my first system - NCE Power Cab starter set. I have three DCC fitted locos, one runs great with no problems.


    One of the others is a Bachman Branch Line 64xx GWR tank loco with a Lais-DCC chip (6-pin) 860044. When it sits on the programming track it buzzes on DCC power but runs fine on DC. When I investigated it appears the chip was in upside down so I reversed it but no change in behaviour. This is also happening to a Hornby Rail car fitted with an anonymous chip marked 1606-X001; again it runs on DC but just buzzes on DCC. I acquired all these second hand with no history but all appeared brand new in unmarked boxes.


    I suspect the chips are fried but are there some other tests I can do?


    Thanks in advance



  12. 5 hours ago, DavidCBroad said:

    Going back to the top.  You can live frog the point by either adding a fillet of solder to the dead frog points with the sliver of plastic or by filing up an arrow head shape from rail and melting and soldering it into pace on the big plastic blob frog on the earlier type.

    With the frog live you can switch the frog with an spdt switch and feed the rails down towards the blades.  On a Peco point bonding the blades is extremely unusual. I doubt anyone does it. I have never read of anyone doing it, the blade relies on contact through its pivot and between rail and blade, sometimes with a tag, often not.    That pivot becomes the weakest link in an overload situation, or outdoors.  You could bond the point blade to the adjacent rail with some super flexible wire, maybe braided motor brush or car alternator brush wire but it will have to withstand thousands of operations and need some pretty fancy soldering down in amongst the rails.

    The points illustrated by sol have a built in short if you start cutting wires and bonding, the wheels on the curved route run over the end  of straight rail at the frog, whch is at the reverse polarity.  Its not a problem out of the box.  The insulation is just a sliver. I test trackwork with a test loco with only one axle pick up. It should be able to crawl all over the layout without stopping

    I'm not trying to create a frog polarity or even make them live. The problem we have is, as clearly stated in the OP, is electrical connection between blade rail and stock rail. In quite a few cases, when switching the point the blade remains dead.

    The solution is wire in tube and DPDT slide switches.


    Case closed, thanks


  13. 10 hours ago, Grovenor said:

    DPDT slide switches are readily available and will allow you to do what you are asking, use one contact set for the left hand switch and the other for the right hand switch. This will work equally well for insulfrog or electrofrog as it is just supplementing the blade-stockrail contact.

    Thanks, that is the best solution


  14. 1 hour ago, Nigelcliffe said:


    Do you have a multimeter ? 


    Can you confirm that the two blades are not electrically connected to each other within the turnout's existing wiring ?   If so, a switching option may be possible which isolates the blades.   But if not, and the two blades are electrically connected, then there isn't a solution which doesn't involve a saw or cutting disc. 



    I know this hence the post

  15. 10 hours ago, Sol said:

    Isolation  of blades from frog can be done in situ using a dremel to cut rails & bonding also done in situ - drill down next to blades & stock rails , solder a wire to blade rail, down thru one hole, up the other to the stock rail, this works both for DC & DCC.


    Granted, it is a bit of work but it works.

    No, not with these old points. Cutting blades cuts them totally free with no base


  16. 5 hours ago, Sol said:

    The frog is electrically isolated from the blades which are bonded underneath to the stock rails

    One of many on the Internet  ....  http://www.mrol.com.au/Pages/Vu/LiveFrogWiring


    As I said at the beginning, the turnouts are a mix of live and insulated frogs, they are old and therefore the bonding wires are not there and the track is already laid down. So I need a method that connects one blade to it stock rail while disconnecting the other blade from its stock rail.


    DPDT switches would do this but how to use them? The two methods suggested seem to indicate wire in tube and slide switches is the best option.


    Thanks all, 

  17. 46 minutes ago, ikcdab said:

    If your points are completely manual, by which I understand "poking finger", then anything is going to be more complex.

    The slide switch and wire in tube is pretty simple and its difficult to think of anything more straightforward. If you don't mind the visual intrusion, then microswitches might be ok, but they are the devil to set up accurately!

    My thoughts exactly, thanks


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