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Simon G

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    West Cumbria

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  1. Thanks all, I found the tabs that Long Island Jack mentioned, and that did the trick. Once I put small levers in both sides, the bodyshell came straight off. The loco has now been lubricated, the screech is now gone, and it runs very nicely indeed. Job done!
  2. I may be a little bit stupid here, but I can’t seem to work out how to get the body off a GP30 diesel. I need to get inside to do some lubrication, as it runs with a bit of a screech. I saw an article elsewhere on the net that said remove the fuel tank, then undo two screws, only there aren’t any other screws visible when I remove the fuel tank. Photos attached of loco, one showing the underside with fuel tank removed. Any ideas welcomed!
  3. Glad to hear that it worked. I have had issues with chips supposedly not working, and the reset did the trick. It seems odd that your manual differed from the online one. I have about 3 locos with differing Lenz chips, so I will check so see if their reset code is the same as the Silver Mini.
  4. In your position, I would try to contact the Lenz support. In the UK, it is A&H Models of Brackley. They have sorted problems with a Lenz controller for me before, and give good service. Link to website: https://www.aandhmodels.co.uk/lenz-digital-products-65-c.asp I also found a list of manuals etc to download from the main Lenz website. Might be worth a look? https://www.lenz-elektronik.de/download.php#frueher Looking at the manual for the Silver Mini, there is mention of writing 33 into CV8 to do a factory reset. That is an unusual reset code, in my limited experience, but might be worth a go.
  5. Many thanks. That suggestion makes sense. I just wish I had thought to ask this question before I had cut the holes for the point switches in the control panel! I will give it a try. At present, I am just waiting for some switches, heatshrink etc to arrive to finish the control panel.
  6. Simon G


    Well, for various reasons the layout has not progressed very quickly over the past 4+ years! The track was laid some time ago, and the electric points and all the board wiring completed. It has now taken me some time to construct the control panel, but it is now well underway. The layout plan is now slightly different to that above, so I will upload the as-built version. Rightly or wrongly, I have tried to maximise space in the goods yard by using a three way point. As I was building it, I also became conscious that the access road into the yard is one set of points after another. I did try to see if I could alter this, but in the end decided not to. The points are all electrofrog, so slow speed running to and from the yard will hopefully not be an issue. All the sidings have isolation switches, with some having two. The outer loop avoiding line has two separate isolating sections, so two short trains can be held in it. There are also isolating sections on both inner and outer loops in the station area. This is to help with trains entering and leaving the sidings on the top of the layout, and also the outer avoiding line. The control panel is very "busy", with a lot of point and isolation switches in a small space. This has made the wiring and soldering of the switches a bit of a challenge. How successful I have been has yet to be seen. The switching of the system between DC and DCC is being done in a small separate panel. The same panel also houses switches to allow the yard to operate either using its own dedicated controller, or to allow either the inner or outer loop controllers to operate the yard, so that trains entering and leaving dont have to switch controllers. I have a homemade CDU, using Brian Lambert's simple circuit. It seems to work well, but I havent tested how quickly the capacitor recharges to allow another point to be thrown. Hopefully more to follow soon!
  7. I made a simple CDU using the circuit provided by Brian Lambert on his website. It cost just a few pence, using only simple components and works well throwing multiple points simultaneously.
  8. The automatic part of it was part of the intention. As things stand, I don’t see me using the double slip to move much between the outer and inner tracks, except by going into the yard and back out again. However, as the layout will be switchable between DC and DCC, there is nothing to stop movements between the two loops under full DCC control.
  9. Having laid my track some time ago, I have finally got around to building the control panel. I have a double slip which is to be used to get trains from an outer loop into a yard, and also to get trains from the inner loop into the yard. The diagram below shows the relevant part of the payout. The double slip will need to be run from either the inner loop or outer loop controllers. My original idea of doing this was to include a double pole, double throw switch into the control panel specifically to switch between the 2 controllers for the double slip. I have had another idea, which seems to be a neater solution. My point motors are Peco, and I have the Peco PL15 microswitches to fit onto the motors. My idea is now to use the microswitch on the other point shown to switch the feeds to the double slip. The usual feed to the slip with then be the inner controller, only switching to the outer controller when the road is set for a train to enter the yard via the slip. Does this make sense? Can anyone think of a better way? Many thanks.
  10. I don’t have the Lima weight for the Prairie, but I do have a good supply of lead sheet, which could probably be formed into something suitable. Being lead, it might also give better traction with the extra weight. The only issue is that I am on a 12 week self isolation, so can’t easily get to the Post Office just now. PM me if you are interested.
  11. My own experience of these chips is that they are pretty easy to fry. I must have about 3 of them that no longer work. To put that into context, I haven’t had any such issues with other manufacturers chips, such as Lenz, Bachmann and TCS. I do still have a couple of runners, and as others have said, they do what it says on the tin. They are OK for the cheap Hornby 0-6-0 toys, but for a decent model, such as the Pickett, my preference would be for a better quality chip.
  12. It is possible that the 9F motor/chassis is a bit stiff, which would obviously increase the current required. I would check that everything is moving freely, give it a light lube, run again with the Duette for a few minutes, then try again with the Gaugemaster E. A Ringfield on a chassis in good condition should not overload the E.
  13. In the end, I tried Bachmann UK and they were able to supply the replacement units. I finally got around to replacing them today, which was a bit fiddly, but otherwise straightforward. It now runs nice.y on my test track, so will take it back to the club and try it with a load behind. At least all six axles now seem fully linked to the drive unit, so it should be fine.
  14. Thanks for the suggestions again. I will give it a go in due course, but for the time being another member of the MRC has use of the laptop in question, so I need to wait a week until I get it back!
  15. Sadly the downloads on that link do not contain any suitable drivers, or at least none that JMRI recognises.
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