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Everything posted by 34theletterbetweenB&D

  1. Cannot see that poll's results, but am not unduly surprised. What was available was a decent - by the standards of the day - A4, so there was a tick in the LNER express traction box already, and then a truly dire N2. What did I want in 1960? - way too young to be taking RM, I was then devouring back issues of 'Popular Mechanix' (sic) thanks to an uncle working in the USA - but had I been making an input I would definitely have wanted an eight coupled LNER goods (like the 8F), an 0-6-0 (like the 3F) and the V2 and B1 would have been slugging it out for my third nomination.
  2. Alternative 'cheap and dirty' fix from the olden days, a little dab of solder on each pin end. Much used to make valves stay in contact in sloppy sockets - that dates me - off to wheeltappers with that little gem.
  3. Obvious question, did other decoder equipped locos run normally up to expected full speed while you had this problem?
  4. Knowing next to nothing about what is/has been available in N, anyone with something suitable available? (My Google-fu which normally works well, somewhat foiled by a 'Harris' apparently producing N rolling stock .)
  5. Similar to that which the LNER built for its new Welwyn Garden City station in the 1920s. Pair of island platforms originally served by a covered footbridge to a Station building well to the West of the running lines. 'Further improved' when the Station building site and much else was redeveloped into a modest shopping mall, with the 'station' now anonymously embedded within it. (Akin to Schipol airport in concept, which always looks to me as it was accidentally co-located with a large 'destination shopping mall'.) The scheme of just the platform ends on view always strikes me as a good one. Clearly says 'Station', but typically yields a much less obstructed view of the trains operating in and out.
  6. That's well on the way to looking every bit as fine as the real thing. Good to see that the loco end of the linkage to the tender is reasonably discreet.
  7. Screw in crankpins, common head size with Hornby. (Possibly even made by the same supplier.) The centre axle secured by a slotted screw. Before dismantling check from the underside to see if any of the side rods could be catching. It only needs a little bend to have a momentary snag occur while running.
  8. A missed opportunity to get the water tube boiler to function well in rail service was not making an attempt in the Garratt arrangement. More width and depth available for a superior boiler layout, and a wide and more stable frame to support it on the bridge between the power units. Turbine drive and condenser would be natural adjuncts: behold the Bulleid-Yarrow condensing turbo Garratt; driving cabs each end, near track level stoker position for the man watching over the water feed, chain grate, forced draught fan and condenser operation. Near everything on it un- or little proven in rail service, think that's ambitious enough.
  9. Move the red wire around the right hand end of blanking plate toward the orange wire, and then the wiring bundle should all be able to be moved clear of the left hand end of the blanking plate.
  10. Same here, and likewise for reasons of parsimony: when it is hundreds of wagons, making the best of the coupler they came fitted with is common sense. The appearance aspect I most enjoy is that if the peak of the 'bumper bar' face is in the same plane as the bufferheads, the SWB wagons buffer up when propelled and will open out to the loose coupled spacing of about 6" between buffer faces when pulled. This will work down to circa 24" radius if required. (I would like an autocoupler system which allowed continuously braked vehicles to maintain bufferhead contact on the inside bufferheads on 36" rad curves and move to fully buffered up on straight track, without the trouble of sprung buffers; but no such animal is known to me.) On topic! What's your take on the hooks remaining attached to the coupler?
  11. I started with a 'full system' of nominal 4.5A output, and still have not required more power nearly twenty years on: a dozen can motored locos running hauling full size trains, two fully lit trains, several DMU sets with lights. (But I don't use sound, which is current hungry. There's only one old open frame motored mechanism on the layout now, takes about 400mA compared to 150-200mA of the can motored mechanisms with 60 wagon or 12 coach loads.) One asset of a full system is adjustable track voltage. My layouts have always been main line settings, and I expect full line speed on the through express traffic. Some DCC systems that I tried just didn't have the output to match what standard 12V output DC controllers achieved, and an ECML pacific that will only make scale for 55mph is NBG. Add to this that some of the RTR OO locos currently on sale ''just won't do it' with 12V at the motor terminals, but by increasing the DCC system voltage output to deliver 15V at the motor terminals they will all achieve scale for the 90mph line limit (to date at least, always the risk that another manufacturer might choose to emulate DJM's crawly drive ...).
  12. Your coaches with lights will be fully lit when the DCC system is supplying track power. A decoder will be required to switch lights on and off via the DCC system. (Coaches don't yet come with DCC sockets so DIY is involved.)
  13. Long term exposure to an inappropriate lubricant can degrade the plastic bush to the strength of chewing gum per @Les Bird above. I would replace the whole lot if this is the case.
  14. As a grossly underscale piece of track, it's basically impossible. But to the inexpert observer, whether you parallel the outside curves with continuous conductor rail, or have the conductor rail ramps on the straight approaches leaving the bulk of slip as a large gapped section, it won't matter: the effort of having the conductor rail is what will be observed. And those that have the knowledge should understand that compromise is inevitable.
  15. H-D didn't allow much sideplay on the driven wheels, because none was necessary as the mechanism was functionally an 0-4-0. The driven axle was also well constrained so the gear set didn't shift sideways. Fit all flanged and you may have a straight line only mechanism. Measure chassis block width as a first assessment, if it is 13mm it won't take any but very large radius curves. Articulating side rods is always a good plan.
  16. Pick up is through the pinpoints which is very reliable and self cleaning. As @adb968008above, cleaning the wheel tyres is a good plan. Next step. The sliding contacts from the bogie to the body are slightly less reliable. Soldering on thin and flexible wires improves on this. Fiddly but worthwhile.
  17. I can only report on my own experience. Having realised in 2002 that the miniature tension locks then available were not truly reliable if mixed with each other, I standardised on the Bachmann pattern, because only Bachmann were producing the wagons my project required and thus I was going to purchase a large number of them. The wagons go on the layout and stay there, and loss of hook occurs very occasionally: the only event that causes this is if the fat controller causes a collision/derailment of some violence. I am satisfied with the reliability of this item.
  18. Pull the flywheels off. I have done this on several models, typically to increase loco weight rather than for smooth starts, as DCC totally masks the difference with/without flywheel(s).
  19. A Pullman train was a service at table restaurant that took you to your destination. The typical plan was pairs of Kitchen and Parlour cars, with a brake end vehicle each end of the train, neatly arranged with the brake ends outboard. Eight car train: Brake end, Kitchen 1st. Parlour 1st, Kitchen 3rd, Parlour 3rd, Parlour 3rd, Kitchen 3rd, Brake end. If you fancy a rarity like a bar car, Hadrian Bar, it replaces a Parlour 3rd. The all steel 'Queen of Scots' cars were built specifically for the Pullman services on the LNER in 1928, those are the ones to go for if you can find them. Curtains at the windows are post war, no curtains (they had pull down blinds in reality) as originally built for the LNER services. That's the sketchiest of overviews. More here if you have the time: https://sremg.org.uk/coach/coupe/index.html
  20. Wasn't aware of these, thanks. Cue shortage of Hornby NEM pockets...
  21. The fundamental problem is that the real thing is a flexible meatsack, not a rigid chunk.
  22. But why the thought of powering the tender when it will fit in the firebox and a fully concealed gear train can be taken down through the ashpan to the fourth axle?
  23. In all but the simplest cases, reporting an event as swiftly as possible after it occurred, there will be factual error. The best you can hope for is that the core content is correct: in this case report of train on fire, good approximation of location and time of incident. Generally that much is done well. The rest needs to be treated with extreme caution. (I have twice witnessed incidents which were reported in the media, and both contained material and verifiable errors of fact: the most striking being that a vehicle reported as briskly departing the scene (that much correct) was travelling East, when the only available route was on as near a perfect North-South alignment as you are ever likely to find.
  24. Meant to respond to this earlier, but forgot. Yes there is a discernable difference, resulting from a more libertarian outlook. It produces slightly different outcomes, one of which is the beneficial - for us - global reach of the English language for science, technology, finance and business. Four hundred years ago, no one would have guessed that the languages of enormous and populous empires (Spanish, Ottoman, Mughal, Chinese) would be displaced as the ubiquitous global language, by the mutterings of a few million from a small island in the Northeast Atlantic. So unsuccessful a location that every year millions would attempt entry if permitted. Never forget that those that wrote its initial constitution were people who had typically found Britain too restrictive, and set out to create a yet more libertarian society. None of which is to suggest that either of these societies is superior to others in all respects. There is both upside and downside. Personally I will live with the consequent wayward behaviour as a worthwhile trade for the heartfelt scepticism that those currently exercising power necessarily know best. All the evidence suggests that this is a healthy choice...
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