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Woody C

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  1. Whether it's new or old, there is always something wonderfully magical watching your empire operate Ian - especially the helix!.
  2. As you can imagine, someone like myself is well used to the threat of solicitors and my own solicitors, Judicious Jesters, will be ready and waiting to be un-collared and to get their teeth into the bone of any canine litigation matters that may arise although I do admit that perhaps I should have gone to a quality opticians rather than my usual branch of Blink Blasters!
  3. Has Blitz the less than successful police dog from earlier episodes now got a new home????
  4. *Shudders* They used to sound as though they were going to blow up as they pulled away from a standing start. Not seen one in years until a few years ago when someone locally restored the Volvo version for reasons that even the owner could not explain!
  5. Thank you Ian and hoping you and your family have a great day!
  6. Hello Keith, Many thanks for your kind words and I am really pleased my ramblings were of use! I did surprise myself in looking back just how little the basic layout cost me in terms of an hourly rate. Using the £455 cost of baseboard, track and scenics and about 200 hours build time, it further breaks down to a weekly rate of about £4.50ish which is less then the cost of a single Mars Bar each day! I am beginning to sound like one of those life insurance adverts now but I think it does show that as a hobby railway modelling can be affordable and good value. Good value not just in terms of money but also the development of skills. I have certainly learnt a lot from Chalkdon. However the most fulfilling moment for me was as I was walking out of the Man Cave the other day I turned around just to make sure I had switched off the controller. I just stopped for a moment looking at the layout and it suddenly hit me that it was something that I had built and created from scratch and kits. That moment was probably priceless in terms of fulfillment if that makes sense. As I said in the video, the most difficult part of the whole layout was getting started! After that everything else begins to flow naturally! I hope that your house move goes well but don't wait to long for that fresh start! For anyone else reading this, my dulcet tones on the subject of both having just about finished (and I did not think I would be saying that for many years yet!) Chalkdon and the costs of it are available in this video
  7. Well, I could not wait until Christmas day to watch this! Not disappointed either! Another great video Ian! A thought did go through my mind (an unusual and at times dangerous occurrence according to Mrs. W!) as I watched which was how long does it take to clean all that track or is the Marklin technology such that it self cleans?
  8. A phrase I am unable to say in relation to most of my projects! I take my virtual hat off to you Ian. I recall the start of the project with the branch line and look somewhat disbelievingly at what you have constructed leading from it in a short time and the wonderful layout you have now. Most modellers construct an extension branch to their layout after having built the main layout but you have done the exact opposite! Time to enjoy the fruits of your labour and run those trains even more! Thanks for another year of entertaining, informative and amusing posts! Woody
  9. Hello Chris, Many thanks for not only your kind words but also explaining your own experience in words that brought not only a smile to my face but also an audible chuckle from me that Mrs. W picked up on! I then had the job of trying to explain what I was amused about and why, which was not that successful given that Mrs. W's main interest in railways is as a means of travel to get away from me! I must admit I did think about the possibility of motorising the gates but given my abilities thought the better if it as it would no doubt have ended up like a four handed clock with a major malfunction . It is a miracle that they even open and close with digit power let alone digital power! I do hope you get your gates mechanised and installed soon so I can learn how to do it. Woody.
  10. Hello, A bit of an open and shut case with the latest addition to Chalkdon with some long awaited level crossing gates having been constructed and installed. Probably would fail any Rail Safety checks but the locals are happy! They doo need some further bedding in around the posts and a bit of weathering but I am quite pleased with how this project has turned out. Maintenance loco No5 has benefitted on its trial run of being able to run through at speed which is useful given its Kato chassis! For some reason that I cannot recall I decided I wanted the main gates to be able to open. Brass wire hinges and a miraculous case of actually measuring things rightish means they do that. Given that the width of the road is just about twice that of the track bed means that the gates conveniently fold over each other. Almost as though I planned it! Unfortunately for this Dapol pedestrian the side gates do not open so it is going to be a long wait! The problem with these close up pictures is that they show just how much more there is to do!
  11. Hello Christopher, Thanks for your comment regarding the Kato chassis. One of the things I discovered whilst trying to research the Kato chassis and the possibility of putting a DCC chip on it was that there is not that much information about the technical specifications of this or the other useful chassis that Kato produce. What I have come up with, as someone who is in no way an expert on electrical matters, is purely my observations and interpretation based upon what I found on the internet, which can at times also be at odds with itself! Whilst the chassis itself is advertised on the packaging as being capable of taking a 'Maximum DC12v' my understanding is that the motor itself may not be built for12v. From what I further understand, the 109s predecessor, the 103, had a 3v motor which ran on DC12v due to circuitry that dropped the 12v to the 3v that the motor was designed for. I am not sure if that circuitry was external to the motor casing or contained within but I am led to believe it was also advertised as 'Maximum DC12v'. Given that the Kato 109 packaging also states 'Do not operate this loco on DCC #00 (analog address)', (which is what you could do with the Bachman EZ Command DCC controller which allows the operation of a DC loco on a DCC track using that DCC controller) it is reasonable to assume that the motor may not be as robust as a pure12v motor in a modern model locomotive might be expected to be. To my mind this is an indication that the itself motor may not be 12v. In adding a DCC chip I also found that the chassis ran at relatively higher speed than I could obtain using just DC control. Unlike DC control, where the voltage picked up by the motor from the tracks varies from 0v to 12v depending upon the controllers setting, my understanding is that DCC delivers a constant 12v to the motor but the speed of the motor is controlled by the chip as it pulses the 12v. In adjusting CVs 2,3,4,5 and 6 I managed to have a slower running more controllable chassis but still not as good as DC. Again my suspicion would be that the motor itself is not built as a 12v motor. Whilst none of the above is conclusive proof that the motor is either 3V or 12V my own interpretation is that the motor itself is likely to be 3V although as advertised the chassis will run on a maximum DC12v which is what most DC users want to know. Either way the important part to me is that I have managed to build this loco for £47 including a DCC chip and it works and has continued to work running for 2 hours on the layout yesterday without a glitch and I hope that may encourage others to have a go. As I said at the beginning I am no expert but I trust you appreciate from the above why I said what I did in my video. Regards, Woody .
  12. Hello, Been too long since I have updated this but my time since early 2023 has been spent on a number of other projects including some on Mrs. Woody's' To Do' list! However Chalkdon has been running on occasions and just recently has seen the arrival of some new rolling stock including this. It is a 3D print that I picked up from the Sleaford Model Makers Show for £9. It runs on a Kato 109 chassis which cost me £26. I have added a Lais DCC chip which cost a further £12 making a total cost of £47 and about 10 very enjoyable hours of my time! All in all a bit of a bargain! There are slight compromises such as the chassis having a DCC chip fitted means the 3 volt motor is probably not as slow as on DC but fiddling with some of the CVs has made it good enough for me! I know that you can fit resistors, diodes and other electrical wizardry to reduce voltages but to be honest that is going a step too far for my skills! Fitting the chip was relatively easy - the hardest bit being getting the chassis apart. If you have trouble getting to sleep there is a YouTube video on this project at Hope this is of interest and thank you for your continued interest in my glacial progress with Chalkdon! Woody
  13. Interesting and thoughtful words as ever Keith. I must admit I do admire modellers who can limit their imodelling to one line on a particular date or similar but for me and no doubt others there is a smorgas board of modelling out there to try! Never seen an epitaph that read ' Wished they had spent less time model making!' There is a danger, especially in this internet age, that we can get over whelmed with ideas, views, advice, prototypes, etc. and end up achieving very little because our minds try to process all that is before us and we actually almost give up! For me one of the more liberating reviews I had on my own personal model making some years ago was captured in my 009 layout Chalkdon that I first just called For the Fun of it. It is one of the few layouts that I have built that has nearly got to the stage of being finished. Having got to an age where my years left are limited and with an interest in so many aspects of model making I have to accept that in many ways I don't have time to be too fussy about what I model so, as long as I enjoy it and it gives me satisfaction and a buzz then I am getting what I want out of my model making time. We are all different but most of us have a stash of models for that one day layout which for many of us will never happen but it is also fun to dream! You do have a great taste in the models you choose! Apologies for the rambling nature of the above but trust at least some of it makes sense!
  14. That is one fine video Ian. I know from my own Crossroads style amatuer productions that these things take a great deal of time to put together so thanks and nice one! Looking forward to the next installment. At the risk of asking a stupid question was that a clock that you are working your timetable to ticking in the background ?
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