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Anthony Ashley

North Welsh Coast Railway - Welsh Dragon Rail

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WELSH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVELOPMENTS

 

Dear David,

 

Thanks for your Christmas wishes. I hope all had a great Christmas and the new year brings constructive and enjoyable modelling.

 

I have been working on the lift up section, in particular making sure that the 3 pairs of line match exactly an do not derail. A difficult task in N gauge. Photos of the change area from the static base board to the lifting base board are shown featuring the one of the hidden sections of track. There has been some difficulty with access to drill holes and so on but I have managed. 

 

The track has been laid across the gap between the 2 base boards. I have screwed in small brass screws under each rail, 4 in all 1 for each rail on each board. I have soldered the top of the screws and then soldered the rail to the top of the screw. I believe all of the screw heads are at the same height. So when the rail is cut the rails should remain in position and liner up (I hope!!!) 

post-15340-0-52900200-1420630627_thumb.jpg

 

post-15340-0-89663400-1420630647.jpg

 

post-15340-0-45348000-1420630658.jpg

 

I have to do the other side of this hidden track rail and then the same on both ends of the other hidden track. For the scenic pair of rails I shall use a copper clad sleeper stuck top the base board and then solder the rail to it. I have faith this will work as have never done it before.

 

I can also start laying track support for the hidden loops as all of the supporting rods are in place on the right side of the layout. A little more painting to go.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley  

 

 

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WELSH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVELOPMENTS

 

 

Dear All,

 

I have been laying track on the first of the dog bone loops under the right side of the layout. Having completed one end of the first6 loop and the second straight I realised I had not tested the maximum amount of gradient on the straight I am constructing. These are just over 12 feet in length, and are dead straight. Accordingly I thought I should test possible gradient for N gauge. The enclosed photo is my attempt to conduct this test.

 

I just used an approx. 15  foot long board and laid my test track when it was level. I then worked out my 2% and 3% gradients and tested both. My rake had a Dapol Britainia loco with a rake of 17 MK 1 coaches. Both the 2 and 3% were successful, so in the straight area I can use up to 3%.

 

I have decided to go a max of 2 1/2% on the straight.

 

post-15340-0-78779900-1421229264.jpg

 

post-15340-0-08560500-1421229282_thumb.jpg

 

post-15340-0-00282900-1421229273_thumb.jpg

 

Back to the track laying and wiring. 

 

Are there any comments on the maximum gradient used on other N gauge layouts.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

 

 

 

t  

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That's impressive that a kettle can pull so many carriages up a grade. In N scale!!!

 

Give me a call before you leave for Sydney. I have a small gift that you missed out on because you weren't at the Monday meeting.

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Anthony

 

I was recently loaned a book about the LNWR & LMS in North Wales, it covers the branches around Caernarfon, and Bangor shed, it's a Wild Swan book by Bill Rear. Sorry, I'm not at home so can't quote the ISBN, but it would surely be of interest to you, if you've not seen it.

 

Kind regards

Simon

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Anthony

 

I was recently loaned a book about the LNWR & LMS in North Wales, it covers the branches around Caernarfon, and Bangor shed, it's a Wild Swan book by Bill Rear. Sorry, I'm not at home so can't quote the ISBN, but it would surely be of interest to you, if you've not seen it.

 

Kind regards

Simon

Dear Simon,

 

Thanks for the information. Your entry has lead me to 2 books which I think should be relevant to the line. The first is From Chester to Holyhead the branch lines by Bill Rear. The other is the Steam on the North Wales Coast by Michael Jones. 

 

Thanks for the information. Once I start getting into scenic creation these books and my 100s of photos will be really useful. 

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

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Pleasure - the book I borrowed includes scale track plans

 

Best

Simon

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WELAH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVLOPMENTS

 

Dear All,

 

I have some news for those following this thread. My job has meant a move interstate probably for 3 years. I shall get nearly monthly trips home but it will limit work on the actual layout, although there will clearly be some progress on the return trips. What I will be able to achieve is building nearly all of the buildings on the layouts. I have taken all of the material required to do this. After this posting I intend to go on long service leave and then retire so progress will then be radically accelerated. I shall complete nearly all buildings if I build one every 3 days!!!

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

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WELAH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVLOPMENTS

 

Dear All,

 

I have some news for those following this thread. My job has meant a move interstate probably for 3 years. I shall get nearly monthly trips home but it will limit work on the actual layout, although there will clearly be some progress on the return trips. What I will be able to achieve is building nearly all of the buildings on the layouts. I have taken all of the material required to do this. After this posting I intend to go on long service leave and then retire so progress will then be radically accelerated. I shall complete nearly all buildings if I build one every 3 days!!!

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

 

Sounds like a good plan Anthony; I hope it all works out well for you - look forward to seeing the buildings on the layout in due course...

 

 

David

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yes, hope it goes well, we'll all be here, waiting for your posts, so don't let us down!

 

good luck

Simon

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Good luck with the move - and don't worry, we'll all be here waiting for the pictures of your handiwork!

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WELSH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVELOPMENTS

 

Dear All,

 

I have now been in Sydney for nearly 3 months. Over easter I had a trip home for about 10 days. I managed to  take a day here and there for more modelling. I have decided that to progress the scenic area for Penmaenmawr I need to complete the hidden track on the level immediately underneath, as the scenic horizontal board will restrict access to the hidden track underneath in terms of laying and wiring. I therefore did the hidden track boards and cork work. The area is now free to insert the track and wiring. I have a few photos below of the area under development. I have nearly completed the first level of the hidden loop on the other side of the layout under Bangor. I have managed to run a loco from the Conwy station area over the river to the inter change points just north of Bangor, onto the hidden track which goes under Bangor on the other end of the layout and then back up the layout to the north of Bangor. That is a run of about 80 feet, a fair way in n gauge.

 

Photos are below

 

post-15340-0-14095900-1428920323_thumb.jpg

 

post-15340-0-85569700-1428920336_thumb.jpg

 

I have also completed another 8 foot by 6 foot base board as a part of the Penmaenmawr area. There are only 3 base boards left for completion. A 2 foot by 4 foot board and two 8 foot by 4 foot boards. The development on the boards are below.

 

post-15340-0-78451700-1428920475_thumb.jpg

 

post-15340-0-36785500-1428920510_thumb.jpg

 

All comments are welcome.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

 

      

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Anthony,

 

Welcome back! I was wondering what you were up to!

 

80 feet is a fair run in anything! Two thirds of a mile in 0, about 1.1 miles in 4mm, and twice that in 2/N.

 

One day....

 

Best

Simon

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Let me know next time you are in Brisbane. I have a small gift for your airport.

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Let me know next time you are in Brisbane. I have a small gift for your airport.

I shall be back in Brisbane on the week end of 2 May. Will see you then.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony

Edited by Anthony Ashley

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WELSH DRAGON RAIL LAYOUT DEVELOPMENTS

 

Dear All,

 

I shall explain my technique for drafting the plan and then cutting the vertical ply formers for the layout. These formers are used to support the horizontal surfaces and to align with the geographic elevations in the area being modelled. 

 

First step is to go to Google earth and find your area being modelled. I shall use Penmaenmawr as an example. Below is the Google view of part of Penmaenmawr.

 

 

post-15340-0-67600200-1429275776_thumb.jpg

 

Next is to match your plan with the specific area of the map required. My plan is below. I generally make sure the satellite map and the plan are aligned in exactly the same directions as this make the process of following the line of the ply former much easier.

 

post-15340-0-01299500-1429275946_thumb.jpg

 

You should be able to work out the location of the ply former on the satellite map. I then determine exactly the line of the ply former, where there are gradual slopes or steep drops. Gradual slopes only need the ends of the slope to be marked. Steep slopes are marked by a series of brown circles. Where there is a steep slope over a small horizontal distance the two heights need to be measured. The Google maps application will provide specific elevations for every point on the map. I determined the scale of a metre change on the map in mls on the layout. I have found that for some smaller elevation changes which are significant in terms of scenery some vertical exaggeration will highlight the difference for the layout (given the 1:148 scale small elevation changes may not be noticeable on the layout). I mark the elevation changes on my Anyrail scenic map as shown above.

 

I then draft a rough paper plan for each former, with all vertical and horizontal measurements marked on the paper plan from the . The total of the horizontal measurements must add up to the length of the former, or you need to remeasure the distances.    

 

I then use Any Rail, using a plan of 24 boxes by 12 boxes to transfer the paper plan onto a computer plan. Each interval represents 100mls and therefore approx the size of a sheet of ply. I then draw each individual ply former to scale. These can then be rotated or flopped on the 24X12 plan. Once all are drawn it is a matter of best fitting the formers onto the computer plan. This is a little like completing a jig saw. The waste is minimised and is clearly an economic way of planning the formers. 

 

The plan for the formers for Penmaenmawr is below. The numbering for the formers is consistent between the scenic plan and the former plan. 

 

post-15340-0-52572300-1429276561_thumb.jpg

 

I have managed to fit 10 formers out of 1 sheet of ply with some left over for the next area.

 

Hope this was of interest. All replies are appreciated.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

Edited by Anthony Ashley
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I have somehow missed this thread until now. Amazing, not just for the scale of the layout but for Anthony's very clear explanations.

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Wow! This is looking mega impressive!   Thanks for directing me to this thread.   I am daveclass47 from you tube by the way! lol.

 

Cheers

 

Dave

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Have just viewed this and WOW - what an ambitious project.  Well done - looks great..

 

TC will handle all that you mentioned and is dictated by the size of your computer's memory.

 

Looking at your "Switchboard" diagrams I would comment:

 

Consider numbering all electrically operated points on the diagram and the real model - it will help in time.

All track lines must be continuous, unless they come to an end stop.

Allow TC to work out the schedules (routes) after indicating the Start and Stop locations - this way it will test the route, and you can fix it if there is an error.

You can link any switchboard with another switchboard on the screen to make visual navigation easier.

Consider multiple VDU screens - TC can handle it.

Consider WiFi for tablet/phone in view of the size of the layout - TC can handle it.

 

You can download a demo of TC Gold version 8 and User manual from Freiwald - although you might  have already done this.

 

Good luck with the project and ultimately playing trains - regards - Stu

 

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Dear Joseph, Dave and Stu,

 

Thanks for your comments they are much appreciated.

Stu I can respond to a couple of your points.

 

Below is part of the layout diagram pertaining to Conwy. The rest of the layout is similarly recorded in a wiring diagram. Each piece of track is numbered with the corresponding numbers recorded against the terminal strips under the layout. I have a summary of all the points with the servos recorded in a spread sheet listed against the relevant numbering system. 

 

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post-15340-0-02332600-1429742513.jpg

 

post-15340-0-72902300-1429744159_thumb.jpg

 

I think you this covers what you are suggesting but if not, and I am not sure, could you suggest any alterations I should make to the recording system, as I have not done this before.

 

All lines are continuous, except those for the goods lines.

Haven't gone into scheduling yet but will follow your advice.

I have the demo version of TC gold. My electronic track diagrams are at page 19 item 468 of this blog if you would like to have a look and provide any comments.

 

Thanks for the rest of the advice.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

 

 

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Dear Anthony

 

Its always a bit daunting, initially, drawing layout schematics in any S/W program and I think you've done exceedingly well. Remember the schematic diagram (called Switchboards in TC) is the only way the software "knows" how everything fits together, and therefor how to control. Have a look at my videos 3A & 3B to get your mind around schedules https://youtu.be/CpgZubSiZug

 

From my experience of the S/W I would suggest:

 

Add a key to the diagram indicating colours of track for areas, boosters, etc. it might help later on.

I've added arrow heads to certain tracks to indicate restricted direction of travel (since my layout is continental and the opposite direction to the UK).

There is a Timetable to operate schedules in TC, complete with adjustable clock to scale the timing. I'm sure I saw a spreadsheet somewhere on you blog with intended "operations" - great fun.

 

If your ECoS is wired up and also chatting to your computer and TC software, I'd suggest having a go a doing a simple schedule, A to B To C and back. I think its possible in the Demo version.

Might inspire you...

 

Have fun - regards - Stu

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Hi Anthony,

 

I stumbled upon this thread some days ago and have had several enjoyable reading sessions to go through all of it.  It can only be described as a labour of love.  The scale of what you are doing is immense, but you seem to be methodically working through your plan.  I hope that Sydney is treating you well and I wonder how the building construction is proceeding.

 

All the best....

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Dear Stu and Andrew,

 

Thanks for your comments. I have been busy with a tour around Australia and a conference before that so I have had little time to focus on RM Web.

 

Stu I shall have a look at your videos tonight and hope to learn a great deal form them. I have only created the switchboards to date but have not tested them with running anything. I intend to buy the full TC Gold program eventually, but given sojourn in Sydney intended to leave it until I get back. I have colour coded all of the tracks on my scenic diagrams according to function ie up/down/goods yard. I agree with your suggestions. In fact the wiring diagram is colour coded by isolated sub districts.

 

Andrew your comments are appreciated as all positive encouragement drives me on to continue with the task. With such a large task the end seems a long way off, and so the completion of intermediate steps provide additional encouragement. Planning is the key and the concentration to focus on the next stage of the plan. I have nearly finished the final 2 base boards out of the total of 14 required, and will produce photos when finished. I hope I can finish them this week before I leave for Sydney again.

 

Thanks again for the encouraging comments.

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

Edited by Anthony Ashley

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WELSH DRAGON LAYOUT DEVELOPMENT

 

Dear All,

 

Some progress with my trip home. I have completed one of the two base boards at the bottom of the layout and nearly completed the other bottom base board. Merely need to fit the legs and cross bracing with most pieces cut. It may take some time until this is done as I won't be returning for some time. I have saved the shed and layout from water inundation after receiving 300 mls in about 1 hour the weekend before last. It was a lot of water!!!

 

Photos are below.

 

View from bottom right corner of the layout. In the immediate foreground is the last completed board. This end will feature the mountain to the west of Penmaenmawr. I have reached the other end of the shed!!!!! 

 

post-15340-0-12019200-1431522139_thumb.jpg

 

View from bottom left corner of the layout. The length up the boards is about 36 feet.

 

post-15340-0-13584600-1431522160_thumb.jpg

 

View from the Conwy end of the layout

 

post-15340-0-05211100-1431522170_thumb.jpg

 

Shot showing the nearly completed layout on top of the most recently completed section. Only 1 to go!! 

 

post-15340-0-87525600-1431522180_thumb.jpg

 

Once the base boards are completed I need to finish the remaining vertical supports. I shall need at least 2 sheets of 12ml ply 24oooX1200 mls.  

 

Regards,

 

Anthony Ashley

 

 

 

 

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Glad to hear you didn'y have a real river running through your layout!

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