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Les Green

Lime Street Station

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My next step in this project is to make the station roof, and it is HUGE!

 

STEP 1: Print off a drawing of the Roof Truss and locate some 1mm wire rods to hold the top girder in place.

post-8613-0-48259900-1316623352.jpg

 

STEP 2: Locate the top girder and cut it to the required length and then solder the link webs and the roof girder supports into place.

 

post-8613-0-11253700-1316623362.jpg

 

STEP 3:

This shows two completed girders for the top of the roof truss.

 

post-8613-0-69452200-1316623391.jpg

 

STEP4: Position the lower part of the truss on to the drawng and solder the components together.

 

post-8613-0-84579200-1316623372.jpg

 

STEP 5: Add the truss links we made earlier

 

post-8613-0-18712400-1316623716.jpg

 

STEP 6: Remove the completed truss from the drawing. This shows the state of one of the drawings after ten identical trusses hade been made. A bit worn and scorched!

 

post-8613-0-00785200-1316623343.jpg

 

A later post will show some of the completed roof trusses. The Southern roof section has seventeen roof trusses. All now made and ready for setting up for the next step.

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Whilst Les has been making great progress on the roof structures, the layout has been partly dismantled to allow installation of the control systems for the semaphore signals.

 

Geoff, electronics wizard, and John spent several hours on Monday installing the main hardware for the system which will control all the servos that drive the semaphore signals.

 

This will eventually be spread beneath four of the baseboards which have signals installed on them.

The first step on Monday was concentrated on the board which carries platforms 1 to 5, and has a total of 15 semaphore arms on it. (Will eventually be sixteen, when I build the missing signal)

 

The following pictures will hopefully show what this comprises, and I will try to explain how it works.

Any errors I make in my description I will come back and edit later, when my mistakes are pointed out to me.

 

First a greneral view under the baseboard, after the control hardware has been installed, but not the signals:

post-3984-0-56992300-1316640824_thumb.jpg

You can see here that the boards are fairly crowded!

 

The signal control system is fully integrated with the route setting system.

When a route is selected, validated and setup by the soute setting computer, the appropriate signals are cleared, after a delay of about four seconds.

(You can hold the signals for longer if you wish, by pressing the "Signal Inhibit" button during the four second delay period. They will then only be cleared when the Inhibit button is pressed again).

 

The first part of the control system is the "Node" where the network from the Route Setting computer handles the binary coded instructions for clearing the signals.

It looks like this:

post-3984-0-06879700-1316640711_thumb.jpg

You can see this at the bottom, left of centre in the full view above.

 

The second part of the system is the control board for the servos themselves.

In this first instance the board can control up to sixteem individual servos, of which fifteen will be installed initially:

post-3984-0-93931600-1316640732_thumb.jpg

As you view the picture, the connections for the sixteen servos are down the left hand edge.

Next to them are the eight PICs which each hold the software to control two servos.

The next items are "opto-isolators" which are sort of relays which ensure naughty electrical things don't damage the Chips.

When the switch for a particular signal is Closed, the software drives the servo to the Danger position.

When the switch is Open, the servo drives the signal to Clear.

 

The software ensures the motion between Danger and Clear, and vice-versa, simulates a prototypical signal movement.

I hope the result will be seen in a video I hope to load in the future.

As an aside, the PICs and their software in this control system are the same as those commercially available from G & F Controls. (Geoff and his friend Frank).

 

You may be able to see in the photo, at the bottom, a small slider switch, with a label "Safe".

In the Safe position, this ensures that all the PICs will drive any attached servo to its Mid Position.

This is important during the installation process, and helps to ensure no damage is done to signals by allowing the servos to drive the signal out of range.

 

When all the signals have been installed, the Danger and Clear postition for each is adjusted using a "Setter Box", which looks like this:

post-3984-0-01122500-1316640802_thumb.jpg

This setter box allows you to select each individual signal by a Hexadecimal selecter showing 0 to 9 and A to F.

Once the "Safe" switch has been cancelled, the box can be used as follows:

Switch it On; select the appropriate signal; set the Danger/Clear switch to the position you wish to adjust and then use the wheel to move the signal. This is like a "Joggle" volme control, it will rotate endlessly giving several "clicks" per revolution. Each click will adjust the bandwidth of the servo position signal by 3 x 1,000,000th sec. The range of movement is limitted in the software to between 1millisec and 2millisec.

This is the conventional range for servos as used in Radio Control models etc.

It also follows that the Safe position is set by the software to exactly 1.5msec.

Most other servo controllers on the market use analogue adjusters, but this system is entirely digital, with values stored automatically in the PIC after each adjustment is made.

 

The Setter Box is plugged in to the basebaord here:

post-3984-0-23812200-1316640685_thumb.jpg

 

Once adjustments have been made the box can be disconnected as the adjustments are permanently stored in the software.

 

I'll post details of how we have installed the signals on this board as soon as I can......

 

Steve.

Edited by SteveAtBax
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Here we are. Trusses for the south roof section.

 

Truss 1: One of the basic roof trusses. Thirteen of these have been made.

 

post-8613-0-02629100-1316708051.jpg

 

Truss 2: The truss at the throat end of the station. The lattice work girders are merged with a standard truss and the girders eventually support the front screen. Only one of these needed.

 

post-8613-0-32281700-1316708065.jpg

 

Truss 3: The truss at the entrance end of the station. A unique truss totally diferent to any of the others. Again the girder work will eventually support the end screen which I will fit once the roof section has been assembled. This is one of the more complex trusse and.It took me all day to make it. Note one of the station clocks on this truss. For those of you wondering if we will have a working one. The answer is yes, and it wll be connected to the Rugby Atomiic clock so it will always be correct. How sad is that! But one of our mottoes for those working on the layout is - 'Cos we can!'

 

post-8613-0-49090300-1316708073.jpg

 

Today was spent making a jig to hold the trusses in the correct positions so the roof can be completed.

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When Lime Street was exhibited at Aylesbury a couple of years ago, Mike Delamar of this parish allowed me a peek under the layout's skirts to marvel at the quality of the wiring job.

 

Steve's photos just highlight that what's underneath the layout, is just as much a work of art as what's on top.

 

Magnificent!

 

Andy

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I'll post details of how we have installed the signals on this board as soon as I can......

 

Steve.

 

So here are some details of the first signals we installed on Wednesday.

(The first semaphore was actually installed quite a long time ago, and it has controlled the Slow Down Line from just behind the Signal Box).

 

You may have spotted the Platform 1 starter signal in recent photos on RMweb.

This is the bracket with two dolls and three arms.

It was the first to be tackled, and having been in-situ for some time, it only required its servos to be connected to the control board for it to function.

 

First step was to remove the "horns" from each servo. Then connect the servo cable, via a short extension cable to the correct termination on the control board.

Having set the switch to "Safe" as described previously, this ensures the servo motor moves to its mid-position.

The horn is then re-attached, with the signal arm in a mid-position as well.

Cancel the safe switch, and adjust the Danger and Clear positions of the signal arm using the Setter Box.

The picture below shows the the three servos on the Platform 1 signal after they have all be connected to the control board.

 

post-3984-0-20924900-1316730755_thumb.jpg

 

You can see the servos in the bottom left of the picture, with their leads looping up to the control board and their termination on locations 2, 3 and 4. (No. 1 is reserved for the signal I still have to build!)

 

post-3984-0-35721900-1316731418_thumb.jpg

Here you can see the first signalled movement from Platform 1, with the loco permitted to leave the platform for a shunting movement.

 

The next signal to be installed was the Gantry, which carries three arms for each of Platforms 2, 3, 4 and 5.

 

The building of this signal was posted on the old RMweb, but it is also referred to much earlier in this currnet topic.

 

Because of the existing installation of point motors etc. on the baseboard, the Gantry couln't have its servos mounted immediately below, and had to have its servo mounting board set off some inch or two below.

 

post-3984-0-80233700-1316732026_thumb.jpg

The servo board with all the servos shorn of their Horns.

The two large holes locate the board relative to the signal.

The little brass tubes with wires sprouting contain the LEDs for the signal lamps.

 

 

post-3984-0-98352300-1316732061_thumb.jpg

This picture of the signal on its carry frame shows the operating rods with the Horns still attached, together with the fibre optic leads for the lamps passing up through the location tubes which are firmly attached to the base of the signal.

You can also see how the servo board is set off from the baseboard on the three screwed bars.

The two jubilee clips ensure the whole Gantry stays in place and doesn't rely on friction like all the other signals.

 

post-3984-0-81752000-1316732876_thumb.jpg

This shows the re-connection of the horns for two of the signals and the routing of the fibre optics up the relevant tube.

 

post-3984-0-55404900-1316734867_thumb.jpg

And this is the whole lot, not yet connected to the control board.

(I'd used one long extension cable to set each servo to "Safe" in turn whilst John was out buying more short extension leads!)

 

post-3984-0-80638400-1316732755_thumb.jpg

Once it was all connected up, and set up with the baseboards still on the bench, we replaced the protective clear acrylic sheets which keep fingers out of delicate areas when the boards are being moved about.

 

post-3984-0-62764500-1316732708_thumb.jpg

 

This shot was taken with the camera on its side............

post-3984-0-40584100-1316732784_thumb.jpg

 

Finally we put the main baseboards back in place and checked out all the routes for correct signalling.

post-3984-0-54735100-1316733814_thumb.jpg

 

This is a little video clip I took whilst John was checkin all the routes out of Platfoirm 3.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsU0UOJgnY0

 

 

I'm sure there will be more interesting posts as we bring all our little projects to fruition in preparation for our trip to Utrecht next month.

The rate of progress, now the layout has a permanent home, is quite remarkable..........

 

Steve.

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This is a little video clip I took whilst John was checkin all the routes out of Platfoirm 3.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsU0UOJgnY0

 

 

I'm sure there will be more interesting posts as we bring all our little projects to fruition in preparation for our trip to Utrecht next month.

The rate of progress, now the layout has a permanent home, is quite remarkable..........

 

Steve.

 

Understatement of the year,,,,,,,, "that'll do".

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When Lime Street was exhibited at Aylesbury a couple of years ago, Mike Delamar of this parish allowed me a peek under the layout's skirts to marvel at the quality of the wiring job.

 

Steve's photos just highlight that what's underneath the layout, is just as much a work of art as what's on top.

 

Magnificent!

 

Andy

definatley a work of art, note how every connector etc is marked and noted. definatley the way to do it.

 

IMGP5479.jpg

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I have to say how much I continue to be impressed with the scope and detail of the railway modelling here - and for me that includes the amount of work going into the electrical side of things as well as scenic. It really is inspiring to see your work unfold.

 

In particular this (from a series of images) caught my eye:

 

index.php?app=core&module=attach&section=attach&attach_rel_module=post&attach_id=126587

 

 

I love the annotations/tables printed around the sheet. I guess these are references/step-by-step reminders and so forth?

 

Either way it's almost a work of art in it's own right. It looks very methodical and detailed, and I take my hat off to such intricate preparations.

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I love the annotations/tables printed around the sheet. I guess these are references/step-by-step reminders and so forth?

 

Either way it's almost a work of art in it's own right. It looks very methodical and detailed, and I take my hat off to such intricate preparations.

 

Instructions regarding the order of construction. Hole diameter reminders. Which numbered bracket to fit to each truss so I know where it goes in the roof structure. Which link size to use etc, etc. The most important are the red lines. The roof girder supports MUST be the same height on every span, as well as the same lateral position. If they are wrong then the roof girders will not be parrallel in a three dimesonal sense.

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Yes, there is a damaged truss. Not quite sure where it is in the station but this is what it looks like. I think I can bend it on the model once the roof is complete and I identify the truss location!!!

 

post-8613-0-16382900-1317022776.jpg

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Yes, there is a damaged truss. Not quite sure where it is in the station but this is what it looks like. I think I can bend it on the model once the roof is complete and I identify the truss location!!!

 

https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/uploads/monthly_09_2011/post-8613-0-16382900-1317022776.jpg

Hi, Les

 

The truss in question is located here - ringed in red

 

post-10633-0-47860500-1317033758.jpg

 

Hope this helps

 

Cheers

 

Ron

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Here we go with the station roof. I am doing the South side first so I have no need to worry about the bomb distorted truss just yet!

 

First a jig to hold the trusses rigidly in place. I don't want the fitting of the roof girders to distort anything.

 

post-8613-0-76115500-1317051926.jpg

 

and todays production with some of the girders in position. A slow process as each girder has to be bent to follow the curve of the roof.

 

post-8613-0-54153800-1317051941.jpg

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Met the guy who has constructed the mechanisims for these signals at the Southport Show on Sunday - nice guy. The signals in the flesh are a complete work of joy

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The detail and dedication on this just leaves me well..........GOBSMACKED !!! Enjoying watching the progress.

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Met the guy who has constructed the mechanisims for these signals at the Southport Show on Sunday - nice guy. The signals in the flesh are a complete work of joy

 

Thanks for your compliments.

You must have met Les, the guy doing the roof as well, 'cos he was sat next to me!

 

Steve.

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Here we go with the station roof. I am doing the South side first so I have no need to worry about the bomb distorted truss just yet!

 

First a jig to hold the trusses rigidly in place. I don't want the fitting of the roof girders to distort anything.

 

https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/uploads/monthly_09_2011/post-8613-0-76115500-1317051926.jpg

 

and todays production with some of the girders in position. A slow process as each girder has to be bent to follow the curve of the roof.

 

https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/uploads/monthly_09_2011/post-8613-0-54153800-1317051941.jpg

 

Absolutely stunning.

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You must have met Les, the guy doing the roof as well, 'cos he was sat next to me!

 

Steve.

 

And I had three of the trusses on my workbench at Southport! Their first outing. Plenty of interest. Someone even knew what station they were from without asking.

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The wiring diagram must be a work of art ,it looks so neat and tidy how long did it take to get it all done?

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The wiring diagram must be a work of art ,it looks so neat and tidy how long did it take to get it all done?

 

I can't tell you, 'cos I don't know.

I only joined John's team when the majority of the electrics had been done.

 

I do know that everything is fully documented; every wire, connection, device etc. and filed in manuals.

 

This probably has something to do with John and Geoff having both been BT engineers before retirement.

 

Steve.

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If I had the money, this layout would be worth the airfare to come over and just droooooooool (!!!) :O

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Fantastic work on the roof trusses Les, very impressive. The station canopy is going to be rather special when finished.

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