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British Finescale simple to assemble turnout Kits - All Rail EM Gauge B7 L/H Prototype - First Look


NFWEM57
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I have just taken delivery of a prototype of the all rail version of British Finescale's EM gauge B7 Left hand Point Kit.  I intend to assemble and install on my test track over the weekend.  But first I thought I would upload a few images of the unopened item, the constituent parts and a close up of the area that has changed, namely the all rail crossing V  in place of the cast frog.  The pack as received:

 

649782651_EMB7RailPrototypeUnpacking(1of4).jpg.61a7656353f33402c28c9e13df7d29c0.jpg

 

The parts contained in the kit:

 

1924926985_EMB7RailPrototypeUnpacking(2of4).jpg.511f97f062b75e629ada706811bb5d57.jpg

 

The crossing V area of the track base and and the pre formed rails for the crossing V:

 

223717012_EMB7RailPrototypeUnpacking(3of4).jpg.e369c49e8e259bb24f56d418ea55264c.jpg  409419105_EMB7RailPrototypeUnpacking(4of4).jpg.cccb33d8df56ce24126ca0586e1c43e3.jpg

 

Once assembly is complete I will upload images of the finished product alongside the original cast frog version.  Finally, once installed i will upload videos of  various locomotives passing through the turnout. 

 

Other than assembling the two cast frog prototypes of the B7s earlier this yearI have no track making experience.  The switch blades will not extended as far as the frog on this all rail version so I will need to undertake a little research..!  Templot will have the answer..!

 

Stay tuned...!  

 

Edited by NFWEM57
typo and additional info
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Have now completed the crossing V, wing and check rails are of the turnout.  Simple and straightforward.

 

1663136583_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails(1of2).jpg.1288eb9b0c59210e73d9a90cdfeb9394.jpg

 

The check rails were cut to 52 mm in length and bent at 12mm from each end.

 

The wing rails were made from two lengths of rail, one 24mm , the other 26mm. The 24 mm lengths had flat ends whilst one end of the 26mm rails has a slight angle filed to align with the 24mm length.

 

I cut the crossing V rails  short as I wish to have the isolating gap within the turnout.

 

The gap in the crossing V is much smaller than show as the rails can be pushed further home which minimises the gap.

 

1735633650_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails(2of2).jpg.7e10534386bfd03ef4ff599f87ec8e86.jpg

 

V Rails pushed home further....

 

1409389307_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails2(1of1).jpg.e3eb487d1ea8edae1c325839b1a31e15.jpg

 

Hats off to Wayne, this is an excellent kit and a breeze to build so far.

 

Senior management now needs my attention so I will carry on tomorrow with soldering the frog area, finishing building the turnout and laying on my test track.

Edited by NFWEM57
Additional info.
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15 hours ago, NFWEM57 said:

Have now completed the crossing V, wing and check rails are of the turnout.  Simple and straightforward.

 

1663136583_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails(1of2).jpg.1288eb9b0c59210e73d9a90cdfeb9394.jpg

 

The check rails were cut to 52 mm in length and bent at 12mm from each end.

 

The wing rails were made from two lengths of rail, one 24mm , the other 26mm. The 24 mm lengths had flat ends whilst one end of the 26mm rails has a slight angle filed to align with the 24mm length.

 

I cut the crossing V rails  short as I wish to have the isolating gap within the turnout.

 

The gap in the crossing V is much smaller than show as the rails can be pushed further home which minimises the gap.

 

1735633650_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails(2of2).jpg.7e10534386bfd03ef4ff599f87ec8e86.jpg

 

V Rails pushed home further....

 

1409389307_EMB7RailPrototypeCrossingVandCheckRails2(1of1).jpg.e3eb487d1ea8edae1c325839b1a31e15.jpg

 

Hats off to Wayne, this is an excellent kit and a breeze to build so far.

 

Senior management now needs my attention so I will carry on tomorrow with soldering the frog area, finishing building the turnout and laying on my test track.

 

 

Looking at the turnout you are building, firstly if you use the Exactoscale plastic fishplates, both at the start of the wing rails (where they join the switch rails) and at the end of the V rails where they join the plain track you will have no isolation issues, secondly a quick fillet of solder in the wing rail joints will both ensure electrical conductivity and after a sand will look better. (lots of liquid flux, a very hot iron (clean the tip first) and a very quick in and out with the iron

 

Looks very good

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46 minutes ago, hayfield said:

 

 

Looking at the turnout you are building, firstly if you use the Exactoscale plastic fishplates, both at the start of the wing rails (where they join the switch rails) and at the end of the V rails where they join the plain track you will have no isolation issues, secondly a quick fillet of solder in the wing rail joints will both ensure electrical conductivity and after a sand will look better. (lots of liquid flux, a very hot iron (clean the tip first) and a very quick in and out with the iron

 

Looks very good

Good Morning,

 

Thank very much fro the info, sadly no Exactoscale plastic fishplates to hand but can add later.  For the moment, I'll just leave an appropriate isolation gap.

 

On soldering, I will do that for future builds for my own layout but, for this prototype, it is build as is without soldering the gaps in the wing rails and V, i.e. a basic vanilla build so that all can see the basic product.

 

Just about to start soldering the links and frog wires.  Will upload more pictures when complete. 

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Build Complete

 

Spacer used between wing  and switch rails:

708853251_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(1of7).jpg.c271d337e6b6075faafd805e3ee32485.jpg

 

Finished Turnout

 

1876762623_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(2of7).jpg.eb2afa123bcff8221da92c7861f0e7c5.jpg

 

Position of links and frog wires:

 

1588368817_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(4of7).jpg.1114be37792f83d60778cc2976ac0560.jpg

 

Crossing V and Wing Rail links and wires.

 

775666937_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(5of7).jpg.58119862695f598ea967453af5d2c79a.jpg

 

Additional views.

 

1507600211_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(6of7).jpg.89f68cbe4ea1fb412451e6e11d6c0a14.jpg

 

1043928204_EMB7RailPrototypeFinalBuild(7of7).jpg.5fefa4eef1a4dcd58964254528e743cd.jpg

 

This was an absolute breeze to assemble, soldering minimal, just a little uncomplicated fitting of the two segments of wing rail.  Good to go as is but, as has been suggested, some additional soldering of the wing rail and crossing V joins might improve appearance but not require to improve performance of turnout.  A brilliant product and better than the cast frog variety. 

 

Fitting to test track is next, stay tuned.

 

 

EM B7 Rail Prototype Final Build (3 of 7).jpg

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Hi

 

The wing rails were made from two lengths of rail, one 24mm , the other 26mm. The 24 mm lengths had flat ends whilst one end of the 26mm rails has a slight angle filed to align with the 24mm length."

 

Can I ask if you filed the slight angle at the end of the 26mm length or is this done by Wayne?

 

Regards

 

Steve

 

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21 minutes ago, steve45 said:

Hi

 

The wing rails were made from two lengths of rail, one 24mm , the other 26mm. The 24 mm lengths had flat ends whilst one end of the 26mm rails has a slight angle filed to align with the 24mm length."

 

Can I ask if you filed the slight angle at the end of the 26mm length or is this done by Wayne?

 

Regards

 

Steve

 

Hi Steve,

 

I cut the 4 rails from one of the the length of rails provide and I applied the very slight bend.  Simple to do with flat pliers, 11mm from one end.

 

Just finished laying the turnout so testing next.

 

Patrick

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Video of new turnout here.  It really looks the part and my difficult locos passed through with ease and no issues. 

 

The Class 5 steam loco is part way through a conversion to EM gauge and has Alan Gibson tender and pony wheels but the driving wheels are Bachmann original but will be replaced with AG ones but keeping the original motion gear.  The Hymek is a bit hesitant due to pick up issues. Ultrascale wheels will be fitted in due course.

 

Wayne has created a beautiful product which is simple to assemble with a few common tools and looks superb.  The cast frog and printed base were a game changer, the latest incarnation is orders of magnitude better.  Well done Wayne.  The barrier to finescale track modelling has finally been demolished in terms of design, simplicity of assembly and cost.

 

Now, once all the other turnouts are on sale, I can begin building Norton Fitzwarren in EM..!

 

 

Edited by NFWEM57
typo and additional info
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  • Tempfix

Looking forward to the 14.2 version  as this looks to be really good point design  and as oft said before the other point threads a "game changer"  I guess some gentle curving can be induced at builders risk  to enable some variation.

A big thank you to Wayne for all the work, time and energy expended  on this massive project.

 

Robert  

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15 hours ago, Robert Shrives said:

Looking forward to the 14.2 version  as this looks to be really good point design  and as oft said before the other point threads a "game changer"  I guess some gentle curving can be induced at builders risk  to enable some variation.

A big thank you to Wayne for all the work, time and energy expended  on this massive project.

 

Robert  

 

Robert

 

Providing the builder remembers to keep the common crossing part area as straight as possible, and ensure a "SET" (bend) just before the switch blade on the inside stock rail it should be fine. Better still produce a template from Templot as a guide. The usual advice if you go off-piste just think a little first and take advice if needed

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I omitted to mention how long it took overall and in what order I made the kit.   Assembly order as follows:

  • Wing rails - From section of rail make two 24mm and two 26mm lengths of rail.  File ends flat on 24mm length and one end of 26mm length.   File shallow angle on other end of 26mm lengths, test fit a adjust as required.  Apply slight bend 11mm form flat ends of 26mm lengths.
  • Check rails - From other short section of rail make two 52mm lengths of rail and apply very slight bend, not the full amount, at 12mm from each end.
  • Stock rails -  Insert stock rails fully and the apply final bends to check rails at 12mm points to achieve 1.6mm separation between check rails ends and stock rail.
  • Tie Bar and Switch Rails. - Slide stock rails back to allow insertion of tie bar and then slide one stock rail back, leave the other as is.  Locate one switch rail into tie bar and cut to length leaving a slight gap between the switch blade and wing rail end.  Insert the trimmed switch rail into the track base and move the stock trail back into place.  Slide the other stock rail out to allow access to the tie bar for the other switch rail and repeat the trimming and insertion process before moving the stock rail back into position.  Check the tie bar is free to move and adjust the wing rail position slightly, if required, to leave a gap of around 0.2mm inserting a plastic spacer trimmed to size or gluing the switch rail and wing rail ends in place as required.
  • Insert the crossing V rails noting the orientation of the rails, they are handed, and trim the lengths as required.
  • Solder bridging wires between the stock and switch rails and bridging wires between the two wing rails nearest the switch rails and the wing rails and crossing V rails, spanning 4 rails in total.  Appropriate access points in the track base are provide to undertake soldering.  Attach frog wires to the 2 solder points in the frog area.     
  • If the wing rails are soldered together as suggested by 'Hayfield' above then there is no need to solder a link between the 2 wing rails nearest the switch rails. Only a bridge between the 4 rails, 2 wing and 2 crossing V, is required along with a single frog wire.
  • The turnout is now complete and can be fitted to the layout. 

It took around one hour, without instructions, to assemble the turnout.  The time taken to wait for the glue to set in the cast frog version is about how long it takes to make the wing rails for the all rail version.  There is a little additional soldering so in total a few extra minute to make an all rail turnout vs. the vast frog version. 

 

As has been discussed in the original threads for the cast frog versions, these turnouts can be curved slightly if so required.

 

Hope this explanation helps...!

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Still no mention of the set bend in the diverging stock rail. I know it's optional with these kits, but I do think it ought to be at least mentioned in the instructions, especially for EM and 00-SF. It not only looks more prototypical, it allows the switch to work properly in the prototype manner. This is what the prototype looks like:

 

file.php?id=28413&t=1
linked from: https://www.scalefour.org

 

If this kit is intended to be a model of the prototype (I know that's a heresy in some parts, especially South Devon, when it comes to track), why wouldn't you want to include it?
 

cheers,

 

Martin.

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2 hours ago, martin_wynne said:

Still no mention of the set bend in the diverging stock rail. I know it's optional with these kits, but I do think it ought to be at least mentioned in the instructions, especially for EM and 00-SF. It not only looks more prototypical, it allows the switch to work properly in the prototype manner. This is what the prototype looks like:

 

file.php?id=28413&t=1
linked from: https://www.scalefour.org

 

If this kit is intended to be a model of the prototype (I know that's a heresy in some parts, especially South Devon, when it comes to track), why wouldn't you want to include it?
 

cheers,

 

Martin.

Martin,

 

I think like soldering the wing rails and v rails together, that should be optional.   I guess it should/could be undertaken as the last stage as follows:

  • Mark the point on the diverging stock rail where the switch blade ends and partially remove the rail from the track base (at the toe end of the turnout).
  • Using suitable flat pliers apply a slight outward bend in the rail at the marked point,
  • Reinsert the stock rail and align so that the 'set' so that the bend is just before the blade tip. 
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22 minutes ago, NFWEM57 said:

I think like soldering the wing rails and v rails together, that should be optional.

 

Hi,

 

Wayne has already said that it's optional, and I don't have any quibble with that.

 

My objection is that it should at least be mentioned in the instructions, and preferably also explained.

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Guys,

 

I thought I would share what I've been working on the last week or so, it's the first four video instructions for assembling a Finetrax Standard Turnout Kit. The intro is not completely finish as I need to insert clips of the build once I reach the end of filming everything. Please let me know what you think so far:

 

Introduction and overview:

 

 

Included in the Kit:

 

 

Tools and Materials Required:

 

 

Anatomy of a Turnout:

 

 

So thats 4 sections done, below are all the sections:

contents.jpg.823a0546f5c5b16a46b1dbde4f370800.jpg.372ce61d9da0c5d67083c12e05e3187a.jpg

 

 

It's really slow going, but I'm glad I've got the 'Anatomy of a Turnout' video out the way, it was no doubt the hardest one to do. Should flow easier from now...

 

Edited by Wayne Kinney
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That's great Wayne. :)

 

Just to be pedantic, the rail you are calling a "closure" rail is in fact part of the wing rail. It's called the "wing rail front" and on the prototype it is all one rail through the knuckle.

 

The closure rails are the ones leading up to the wing rail front. You have combined them with the switch rails in the kit. On the prototype there is a rail joint between the switch rail and the closure rail, at the position where you have correctly got the timbers more closely spaced. No doubt builders will want to add dummy fishplates at that position.

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

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17 minutes ago, martin_wynne said:

That's great Wayne. :)

 

Just to be pedantic, the rail you are calling a "closure" rail is in fact part of the wing rail. It's called the "wing rail front" and on the prototype it is all one rail through the knuckle.

 

The closure rails are the ones leading up to the wing rail front. You have combined them with the switch rails in the kit. On the prototype there is a rail joint between the switch rail and the closure rail, at the position where you have correctly got the timbers more closely spaced. No doubt builders will want to add dummy fishplates at that position.

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

I knew you would pick up on that :victory:

 

I've done this on purpose as it was a convenient way of labelling the parts with the least amount of terms, due to the design of separate rails at the knuckle. So I'm labelling in favour of the kit and the way it's put together, it's deliberate ;)

Edited by Wayne Kinney
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