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    Modelling 0 gauge blue diesel era, using DCC. Interested in the North West and North Wales areas mainly (born and bred a scouser - the blue side! - and having had holidays in North Wales as a kid). Am building a new layout, based on West Kirby, Wirral and have decided to bring back preserved steam to the layout having fitted an Ivatt 2-6-2T with sound!!
    12" to the foot DMUs - was a DMU driver at Llangollen Railway for 13 years until I retired on 22 June 2013.

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  1. I've made some progress with the electrics. All of the feeds from the bus bars are now fitted - one feed per separate section of rail. Here's a pic of some of them - sorry it's a bit blurred! The wires are a bit obvious at the moment but once painted and surrounded with ballast, they'll be virtually invisible. Honest!! I know some modellers like to solder the feeds to the underside of the rail but for me, it's too much bother. I solder the wires into the web of the rail and, to be honest, I've had trouble finding the feeds that exist already - once, as I say, painted, ballasted and sprayed. I've also moved the 2 pot frog juicer and connected the wires to the frogs: The wires from the bus bars will be fitted in a few days - I can't do anything for the next couple of days. So, things are still moving!! More soon. Rod
  2. The trackwork is complete - and a rake of empty coaching stock has run over the crossover (hand propelled) in all directions with no problems at all. Just nice and smooth!! I've tried a DMU but that dead section rather spoils the effect, so electrics are the next part of the job. Here are some pics of the finished track laying job - electrics, sleeper staining, rail sides and ballasting still to do!! However, once the electrics are done I can start playperating again! And finally, the best bird's eye view I can manage within the confines of the shed: I've refitted the damaged buffer stop in the stabling point and the repaired Down Inner Home signal is due to be delivered this week. However, I'll leave fitting that until I've done the ballasting - don't want to damage it again!! I've got some Stop boards that a friend has printed off for me (thanks again, Keith!!) so I'll fit one of those (plus the phone) once the electrics are done. As I've said before, it'll be quite interesting with all incoming trains having to stop for instructions. So that's it for tonight: I'm still recovering from a fab weekend in London with my daughter, visiting my granddaughter who's at Uni down there. Plus, Uber river taxis to the Emirates cableway and a visit to the Postal Museum, including a trip on Mail Rail (the underground Post Office railway between sorting offices. Fascinating!!) More soon. Watch this space. Rod
  3. Thanks, Barnaby. I've said before that I am really pleased with it - and still am. The ride over the crossover is so much smoother now - a video will follow in the not-too-distant future - before the ballasting, certainly. I'm now turning my thoughts to replacing the station throat pointwork - 2x right hand, 2x left hand points and a single slip. I made them from C&L B6 kits but built each one separately rather than building them all together in situ. The ride over them is a bit rough, but with a 10 mph speed limit nothing is too obvious. At least my trackwork is improving with experience!! You never stop learning, do you? Rod
  4. No much done today as it's been such a lovely autumn day that I've done some work in the garden. It's not my favourite pastime and I've got a low maintenance garden, but "low" does still mean "a bit of"!! Still, it looks good when it's finished. I was thinking about those choc blocks last night and thought, from the way they were set up, that it's likely that piece of thick wire had never been in one of them. So I remedied that. Today I also took delivery of a 6-pot frog juicer: The plan is that this will replace the 2-pot one I have on the stabling point points: for those 2 and for the other 3 points in the sidings. The 2-pot one will be transferred to the new crossover. I ran a couple of DMUs over the crossover and found the running was not that good at all. Having checked the voltage, there was nearly 16V AC on all of the tracks (phew!!) and the rough running is due to dirty track and/or dirty wheels. Another job to add to the list!! However, I'm having a couple of days off now - starting by getting up at 0615 tomorrow. When you've been retired for a few years that's a bit of a culture shock!! Got 2 alarms set up so far!! So, more next week sometime. Have a good weekend one and all. Rod
  5. I think I've sorted the electrical problem! I found that, if I joined up the new Down line track to the rest of the layout with the fishplates, everything worked as it should. Just unfastening one fishplate gave me the same problem. So I reasoned I must have a break in the bus bar(s) and that break was being bridged by the track. Sure enough, after a lot of time under the boards, I found it: two choc blocks joined by a single piece of thick wire had somehow come apart. How, I don't know, but it's now fixed and the bus bars are doing the job they should be doing and feeding the rest of the layout beyond the new crossover. There's still a dead bit between the crossover and the sidings but that is due to a dodgy fishplate on one rail and no feed from the bus bar (I took it out when I lifted some of the old track for the new). That's nothing special to fix and I need to wire up the crossover anyway. I did find something else I'd missed, though!! I've not bonded the switch blades to the stock rails!!! Things work fine at the moment as the blades and the rails are clean: once painted and after the track has been cleaned a few times, that situation could well change, so bonding wires will be fitted!! Nothing more done tonight. More soon. Rod
  6. Some more work done today. I've cut the rails and fitted the chairs for the Down track. I'm not gluing them down tonight (or even tomorrow) as I want a couple of Butanone-free days. Even though I've got a big fan to blow the fumes away from where the liquid is applied, I suspect they are still floating about inside the shed, and I'm not convinced they're doing me a lot of good!! So, as I say, I'll leave it for a couple of days - maybe until next week - and then I'll use the Butanone with the nearer shed door open. Here's what the workstation looks like: Anyway, back to what I have done!! Here are a couple of pics of the track set up with the spacers in use - from each end: The eagle-eyed reader will have noticed (did you?) that, in the last pic, there's a chair missing. That's because the fishplate virtually covers the sleeper and the chair won't sit square on the sleeper. So my solution is to cut a chair in half and glue the pieces up against the fishplate (but not, hopefully, to the fishplate). The finished result is virtually unnoticeable from normal viewing distance. Here's a close up of it: I've decided that I'll do the same with the insulating fishplate on the opposite rail. At the moment, I've shortened the fishplate but I'm not convinced it holds the rail properly (see the third pic, too) , so I'll replace it and cut the chair in half as I've done here. So, that's it for now. If I can do anything tomorrow, I'll check out the bus bars for the feeds to the main lines: otherwise, it'll be Friday. More soon. Rod
  7. It's 0-MF standard (31.5 mm gauge, 1.5mm flangeways). HTH Rod
  8. If they're standard Peco points, you can replace them with Mike's kits, Paul. It's what I did with the points in the sidings/stabling point area. On the other hand, that could add to a long list of "things to do"!! Rod
  9. And a bit more progress! I've laid the Up line so that track is now complete. I've run a bogie vehicle through it and it's nice and smooth - from the sidings, over the crossover and reverse up the Up line. And back again. Here are a couple of pics: I tried running a DMU through it (knowing I'd have a dead frog) but the thing didn't get beyond the middle of the crossover. For some reason there's no power in the track beyond the crossover. I suspect that somehow I've disturbed a joint in the bus bars. I've tried a part out in the garden and there's no power there either. Something else to do once I've finished the crossover - though it will come under the heading of "the electrics". Next job, though, is to do the Down line. So, ..... watch this space. More soon. Rod
  10. Thanks, Simon. It was one of these flashes of inspiration (if you can call it "inspiration"!!). I was wondering if anyone would notice or just assume it was a typing error!! I doubt it'll end up in the OED, though!!
  11. That'll be the playing, Paul!! I forgot to add, there's the sleepers to stain, rail sides to paint and ballasting to do!! But I can still playperate before and during that exercise!! Rod
  12. They're done!! Switch rails fitted to the Down line point and check rails fitted to both. Operated by the Tortoise motors and the bogie pushed at speed through both. Perfect!! I had to adjust the first check rail I put on a few days ago as I found that, with a little pressure, I could get one set of wheels to ride up over the nose of the common crossing. The check rail wasn't just quite at the correct distance from the stock rail. I trimmed the chairs a bit further, it now fits properly and I can't get the axle to ride up. I made sure the other 3 check rails fitted properly as I laid them: all are OK. I'm really pleased with this. Just the plain track to do now - oh, and the electrics!! - and I can get back to playi.. oops, sorry, operating!! Pics below: More soon, Rod
  13. Hi 313201. Aaah! I understand. I'm afraid the points I took up did not react at all well to the upheaval: they are unusable again, unfortunately. It's because they were from C&L kits in which each sleeper is placed separately on a strip of double-sided sticky tape which is laid on top of a paper template (itself stuck to the board underneath) and the chairs then glued to those sleepers. They objected to coming up in one piece!! The Peco points I took up from the sidings were OK and reusable, as I think these should be should I ever need to take them up again: in other words, a one-piece base gives the most chance of coming up whole. Rod
  14. Thanks for that, Barnaby. I've amended the link in my post above to avoid any confusion. Rod
  15. Hi 313201. I don't actually produce these kits: they are made by Greenwood Model Railway Products - link here: https://greenwoodmodelrailwayproducts.co.uk/ Mike produced this crossover kit from a Templot drawing as it was designed to fit a specific location. I've built Peco replacement point kits from Mike before - earlier in the thread - details are on the website. There's plenty of choice. HTH. Rod
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