Jump to content

BEIJIAO - a large Chinese HO exhibition layout set in the 21st century


TEAMYAKIMA
 Share

Recommended Posts

We have had a Faller working car system on the layout since well before our first ever exhibition, but we have never used it - because it needs to be 100% reliable and we have never had the time/opportunity to TEST, TEST & TEST it.

 

We cannot afford the time at an exhibition to keep sorting out problems and so it needs to be 100.00% reliable and I cannot the money if £130 vehicles keep veering off the baseboard and smashing on the floor!

 

My new shed will allow me to set up various boards (but not the whole layout) and so I will be able to test the Faller now in stages.

 

This video shows an early version of the reverse loops at r/h end of the layout. The one being demonstrated is the main road which runs along the front of the layout, the smaller one in the background is the narrow road which goes over the level crossing.

 

I've made it a bit more sophisticated since this video was taken by introducing a timer into the circuit which delays the vehicle darting onto the layout as soon as the first vehicle arrives.

 

 

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

As if to prove that I've got too much time on my hands for my own good, yesterday I decided to tidy up the r/h Faller loops.

 

As you can see in the old video it would appear to the casual observer that the two loops had been botched up by someone who didn't really know what he was doing - and there was a good reason for that!

 

So yesterday I tidied everything up and took time to TEST, TEST and TEST again - and I'm please to report (much to my surprise) that it all worked 100%. You will also notice that I have removed the loco headshunt.

 

IMG_20210206_094925.jpg.e2d326f6e9434f9c640450edbd12e577.jpg

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have continued going around the fiddle yard and sorting problems and doing things properly where they were rushed (or done on the cheap!) originally.

 

This point motor had to be surface mounted and twice it has been damaged - once being smashed right through the baseboard when the board fell over. The second damage happened recently just moving boards around and so I decided to replace it all together with a less vulnerable option - an unwanted expense but reliability is paramount going forward.

 

Version 1

 

IMG_20210206_115001.jpg.9e55694a8f3240968d4a48b700d43acb.jpg

 

Version 2

 

IMG_20210206_155220.jpg.8bc98d8e66818d88fc0beae773cbf438.jpg

 

Similarly, this inter-board connector was cobbled together to use up existing bits in the spares box

 

IMG_20210206_133609.jpg.136234ed8928eb2f269968e18786bc72.jpg

 

Now it has a proper plug and socket - well. at least a socket!

 

IMG_20210206_155225.jpg.185d10f4d831fc602817b30c6dafa275.jpg

 

 

  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites

I realise that most of you thought I was joking when I posted this photo saying that I was trying to make my layout more attractive to viewers at exhibitions by adding to my operating team.......

 

cellardoor.jpg.0e0d81db66f452edea0979b4695211ef.jpg

 

 Now, I may joke about things like life and death, but I would never joke about the important things in life - like my layout for example.

 

To be honest one of the girls had already attended a team meeting - at Aly Paly show 2018. Here is the souvenir photo - it's just a pity about Gordon's carrier bag!

 

DSC_0130.JPG.1d904cb1399d133e5aa54342e9881071.JPG

 

 

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites

In fact, I do know what was in his bag - his funny hat and his camera bag - we were all there to be scanned by ModelU and then fitted on the layout. Martin, Gordon and Ruth...............

 

1474386114_AP18-21PaulStapleton.PNG.5e728890ba90e0e9f42dc423d231ca81.PNG

 

And here they all are waiting for a taxi outside the BEIJIAO 'Hilton'

 

593691232_DSC_0194(2).JPG.e63588acf7b5199cb74ae52f645cb12b.JPG

  • Like 10
Link to post
Share on other sites

On 07/02/2021 at 09:18, TEAMYAKIMA said:

I have continued going around the fiddle yard and sorting problems and doing things properly where they were rushed (or done on the cheap!) originally.

 

This point motor had to be surface mounted and twice it has been damaged - once being smashed right through the baseboard when the board fell over. The second damage happened recently just moving boards around and so I decided to replace it all together with a less vulnerable option - an unwanted expense but reliability is paramount going forward.

 

Version 1

 

IMG_20210206_115001.jpg.9e55694a8f3240968d4a48b700d43acb.jpg

 

 

Good to have this changed. Didn't we have something on the left hand track that clouted that point motor occasionally?

Looks neater too :)

 

Does it work ok with the DAC's?

 

Luke

Edited by luke_stevens
incorrect word used, corrected!
Link to post
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

In fact, I do know what was in his bag - his funny hat and his camera bag - we were all there to be scanned by ModelU and then fitted on the layout. Martin, Gordon and Ruth...............

 

1474386114_AP18-21PaulStapleton.PNG.5e728890ba90e0e9f42dc423d231ca81.PNG

 

And here they all are waiting for a taxi outside the BEIJIAO 'Hilton'

 

593691232_DSC_0194(2).JPG.e63588acf7b5199cb74ae52f645cb12b.JPG

Nice. I've got a hat like that. Essential for winter in Changchun.

Link to post
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

I realise that most of you thought I was joking when I posted this photo saying that I was trying to make my layout more attractive to viewers at exhibitions by adding to my operating team.......

 

cellardoor.jpg.0e0d81db66f452edea0979b4695211ef.jpg

We didn't doubt your intention to add new members to your operating team. What was funny is how you thought adding these two would make viewers look at the layout more. ;) :mosking: 

  • Like 3
  • Funny 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, luke_stevens said:

 

Good to have this changed. Didn't we have something on the left hand track that clouted that point motor occasionally?

Looks neater too :)

 

Does it work ok with the DAC's?

 

Luke

 

1. Maybe, I honestly can't remember, but it won't now.

2. Yes, much neater. I am gradually working through all the FY boards and upgrading them to look more professional. In the rush to get the layout ready for its first show I did a lot of crude stuff as it was quicker than doing a 'proper job'. Yes, the crude stuff worked OK, but now it will just look better.

3. I can't test it yet, but I can't see any reason why it wouldn't.

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been doing more repairs/upgrades on FY boards - this time board 7.

 

As I have said elsewhere after 10 months on furlough from work I will have no excuse (ZERO!) if things don't work perfectly at our next show - whenever that is. I also want the boards to look as if they were built by someone who knows what he's doing and part of that will be making them look professional - I have changed the track plan in the FY several times - leaving all sorts of holes and craters all over the ply tops and so now am filling those holes and sanding them down and will eventually repaint them to make them look nice.

 

As you can see the headshunt min the foreground of this shot is in its third position. The paint will hide the first two - I don't want people to think I got it wrong twice - that would mean that I didn't know what I was doing!;)

 

This new position for the headshunt makes it longer and opens up new possibilities for more complicated FY moves with loco changes and light engine moves. I only hope my operating team don't see this photo - they like to keep things nice and simple and I want to keep these new more complex moves up my sleeve until the morning of our next show :jester:

 

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Friendly/supportive 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

This new position for the headshunt makes it longer and opens up new possibilities for more complicated FY moves with loco changes and light engine moves. I only hope my operating team don't see this photo - they like to keep things nice and simple and I want to keep these new more complex moves up my sleeve until the morning of our next show :jester:

 

 

Joking apart, I have produced several exhibition layouts over the last 40 years and all had operational 'features' which I envisaged being used at exhibitions and they rarely (if ever) got used at exhibitions. I found that ALL operators on ALL my layouts have always deferred to basically just running trains with the least fuss and bother. It would be different with an end-to-end layout - by definition operators do have to do some 'shunting', but with a 'roundy-roundy' there is a natural tendency to default to keeping things simple.

 

I must also admit that, with the exception of the Sunday at Warley, my team have always had to 'fight' the layout to keep trains moving - various 'bugs' have made life difficult for my team, but I'm hoping that once I've got all these issues dealt with we, as a team, will begin using the operational 'features' which I always envisaged would provide the 'WOW!' factor at shows.

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

I want to keep these new more complex moves up my sleeve until the morning of our next show :jester:

Do you really think that's wise, Sir...?!

saluting-dads-army-136427808241402601.jpeg.405e0fdf0f227e258cffac8dc7586712.jpeg

 

:jester:  :jester:  :jester:

  • Like 1
  • Agree 1
  • Funny 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

 .... I only hope my operating team don't see this photo - they like to keep things nice and simple and I want to keep these new more complex moves up my sleeve until the morning of our next show :jester:

 

 

Operating Team member, at first exhibition after rules are relaxed: "Really looking forward to a trouble-free weekend, of simple movements, now all those bugs have been fixed".

 

[Gets handed the 100-page, 'New Operating Rules', resulting from all the bug fixes]

 

Operating Team member: "AAARRRRRRRHHHHHHH!!!!!"

 

;-)

 

  • Like 1
  • Agree 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

14 minutes ago, steveNCB7754 said:

 

Operating Team member, at first exhibition after rules are relaxed: "Really looking forward to a trouble-free weekend, of simple movements, now all those bugs have been fixed".

 

[Gets handed the 100-page, 'New Operating Rules', resulting from all the bug fixes]

 

Operating Team member: "AAARRRRRRRHHHHHHH!!!!!"

 

;-)

 

 

I am reminded of the old expression - "Many a true word said in jest"

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, steveNCB7754 said:

 

Operating Team member, at first exhibition after rules are relaxed: "Really looking forward to a trouble-free weekend, of simple movements, now all those bugs have been fixed".

 

[Gets handed the 100-page, 'New Operating Rules', resulting from all the bug fixes]

 

Operating Team member: "AAARRRRRRRHHHHHHH!!!!!"

 

;-)

 

You missed out the next bit:

 

Puts operating manual aside and ignores it...

 

Paul get frustrated!

 

Luke

Edited by luke_stevens
  • Funny 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, TEAMYAKIMA said:

 

I am reminded of the old expression - "Many a true word said in jest"

All joking apart, the morning of a show is probably not the best time to spring this on them. Even though you can't set the layout up and operate it in advance, it would be worth circulating the new arrangements in advance to the team for them to review and comment!

Link to post
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, St Enodoc said:

All joking apart, the morning of a show is probably not the best time to spring this on them. Even though you can't set the layout up and operate it in advance, it would be worth circulating the new arrangements in advance to the team for them to review and comment!

 

Yes, of course. In fact we will have a rehearsal before any public exhibition. We need to TEST, TEST, TEST followed by REHEARSE, REHEARSE, REHEARSE.

 

What is the difference?

 

TESTING - there are many things to test but here are just a few

 

1. We need to know how many freight cars two Bachmann QJ's can haul. In the past we ran two Bachmann QJ's with 24 coal gondolas with a caboose. We now have the ability and stock to run 34 coal gondolas and a caboose - but can the locos haul them?

2. We need to know which (of 13) Bachmann QJ's run well together as pairs

3. We need to know which (of 4) MTC QJ's run well as a pair

4. We need to know which DF4 diesel (of 4) runs well with a QJ

 

This means taking time and trying many different combinations - taking notes and then deciding how to set up trains with pairs of QJ's and DF4/QJ and also what the stand-by options are if we have any failures at an exhibition

 

REHEARSING - although this could also be called TRAINING

 

1. We need to define the various roles when it comes to operation. We have set the bar at a team of six with four in play at any given time - we have four hand sets - but more and more I can see us needing four operators and a 'front man' which will make meal breaks a problem. 

2. We need to identify which operator does what - particularly when two operators need to work as a team - as in the two industrial rail operators

3. We need to establish which operators like which role

4. We need to know which operators perform which tasks the best - which hopefully will be a similar answer to #3

 

All of the above will take time, but I am confident that we will get the layout performing as I know/think it can.

 

We have to accept that my/our layout is VERY niche and has a very small natural fan base. If I/we are going to get exhibition invites we need to have USP's and I think BEIJIAO mk2 will have those USP's but the operating team need to be able to fully exploit them.

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, St Enodoc said:

All joking apart, the morning of a show is probably not the best time to spring this on them. Even though you can't set the layout up and operate it in advance, it would be worth circulating the new arrangements in advance to the team for them to review and comment!

 

I have a far idea what the crews response will be when the 'new more complex moves' are rolled out to us on the Saturday morning. 

  • Funny 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Al. said:

 

I have a far idea what the crews response will be when the 'new more complex moves' are rolled out to us on the Saturday morning. 

 

I will be emailing team members today (not all look at RMweb) but I feel two things will need to have changed for future shows compared to our first four. If they will have changed then this will enable us to move forward to adopting more ambitious operation

 

1. Things need to perform 100% reliably and 100% predictably - and after all the work I've done I'm hoping that can be achieved. We cannot afford to have one (or even two) team members rushing around fire-fighting problems. For example, we need to know instinctively how to get the best out of the Digitrax DCC system - it has its quirks and we must know how to maximise its performance. 

 

2. The operating team need to have confidence in the layout, the stock, and the control system - the team will not attempt complex moves if they find problems with the basic ones.

 

Edited by TEAMYAKIMA
  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • TEAMYAKIMA changed the title to BEIJIAO - a large Chinese HO exhibition layout set in the 21st century

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...