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Author Topic: Molesworth Vale  (Read 4258 times)

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Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #30 on: September 25, 2017, 08:46:10 pm »
Hi,

It's been a while since my last update as I've been sick with flu for the last fortnight, but thankfully I'm almost back to normal and so construction has resumed.

So, what's been happening? Well, I've now finished all the scenery formers/supports and all the track beds have been cut to the correct shape and securely attached. I've also moved on to fitting the back scene boards, which are 12 inches high (above the absolute baseboard level) which gives me a minimum height of 8+ inches above the track which should be more than adequate.

The first table that was tackled was the 'north'/'crossover' section which was the most complicated to work on as it has the tunnel into the hidden sidings, as well as the crossover portion. After a couple of hours of banging and swearing, I got all the sections attached and vertical.



It doesn't look level in the photo as the table is yet to be leveled properly - the floor is a little uneven but I have fitted adjustable feet to the tables to address this. Next up was the 'west'/'fiddleyard' table. This too presented a few challenges as the scenic section has a curve along the back scene where it changes from 12 inches deep to around 14. Not a big curve, but enough to be frustrating.






The two final boards where pretty straightforward after learning a few key lesson from the previous ones and everything is now structurally complete.





There is still some 'fettling' required where the boards join to make sure everything is lined up as closely as possible, and this will be done once I have laid my flooring tiles and painted the walls (a project for next weekend, hopefully). This was all left until the woodworking was completed as I've generated a Hell of a lot of sawdust and general mess as you can see from the floor!



Following some earlier comments, I've also been thinking about the fiddle yard design. I came up with 3 options to select from, each with their own pros and cons.



Each of the options give a very similar maximum train length, which is more than my requirement (max 7 coach train), and allow for a train to arrive in one direction and then cross over to the other line to return in the opposite one. Option 'B' has the most flexibility here, but also involves the greatest cost, both in terms of components and wiring. Utilmately, I've settled on option 'C'. The biggest benefit here is that the 'through' trains do not deviate from a straight path through the yard. This *shouldn't* really matter as I'm not using small points but if I want to run an express on a loop while doing other things, I'd prefer not to have to keep slowing each time it approaches the yard to prevent a derailment. The four spurs offer a little extra storage and one of these will lead to my programming track spur/rolling stock loading point.

The next jobs are to get the room finished, level the boards, and then tweak the board joins. After that, I should be able to actually start laying some track...

- Andy

Offline PeteW

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2017, 12:02:07 am »
Well, I can only say:
1. It's big.
2. It's impressive.
3. I'm glad I'm not paying for your fiddleyard!

(I'm only jealous!)

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #32 on: September 26, 2017, 10:10:56 am »
and allow for a train to arrive in one direction and then cross over to the other line to return in the opposite one.


When it comes to running trains you would need to consider having a brake end carriage at each end, and likewise a brake van at each end of a freight as that would avoid lifting out and turning things round.
Freight wise, if you have loaded coal/hopper wagons it would be worth putting a magnet under each load so they could travel full into the fiddle yard and, hey presto, return empty.

Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #33 on: September 26, 2017, 06:47:26 pm »
3. I'm glad I'm not paying for your fiddleyard!

Thankfully, after many, many years of aborted attempts at building a layout, I've got quite a supply of bits and pieces to utilize!

- Andy

Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #34 on: October 27, 2017, 12:45:08 am »
Well, it's been rather a long time since my last post due to various commitments at work and home. Things have still been happening though...

Firstly, baseboard construction is finally complete. I've managed to get everything aligned and added the toggle latches that hold the boards together nice and tight. Joins have been tweaked to ensure level transitions and I happy to say there were only a couple of issues that needed to be addressed.



I can now move on to actually getting some track laid. In the past I've used cork under my track but this time I'm using Woodland Scenics Track Bed. Not the cheapest way of doing it but after I compared the two options, the foam seems to be the clear winner for sound deadening. Where the boards butt up to each other, I've glued down some strips of circuit board and will solder the bottom of the rails to it to ensure exact alignment - more on this shortly. A few hours with a trusty Tracksettr or two and I have nearly finished the 'main' loop, as well as the entrance to one end of the fiddle yard.









After that was completed, I started wiring up the first lengths of flexitrack (on the hill in front of the fiddleyard), working from the table joins back to the middle. You can see in the following picture how I've stripped the sleepers from the track and then soldered it directly to the PCB strips and cut trough with a modeling saw. This has proven to be a very rigid solution that I'm really happy with.



Once all the lengths of track were done for this section, I tested the transitions onto and off the slope, as well as the clearance for the curves.



And at long last, we have some initial empty coaching stock movements at Molesworth Vale!

https://youtu.be/9M1NEva8CdU

OK, so technically this is a runaway train, and based on my calculations it was doing (a scale equivalent of) 150+ mph by the time it reached the bottom of the incline! Still, it was very satisfying to see some movement. Lots more track laying to do and then I can hopefully run my first train...

- Andy

Offline weave

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #35 on: October 27, 2017, 02:38:46 am »
Hi Andy,

All looks fantastic. Far too neat and tidy and organised for me. Great stuff. Keep up the good work and looking forward to more.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Offline PhilD

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #36 on: October 27, 2017, 03:02:24 am »
Great start to what looks to be a great layout!

How do you cut your ply - every time I do it I end with a very rough cut and splinters everywhere!

Your cuts look super-smooth.

Cheers
Phil

Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #37 on: October 27, 2017, 03:32:32 am »
Hi Phil,

How do you cut your ply - every time I do it I end with a very rough cut and splinters everywhere!

Your cuts look super-smooth.

I use a fine cutting blade in an electric jig saw and just go VERY slowly. Also, it often helps to have an off-cut under the sheet you are cutting - the off-cut gets the rough edges and the piece you want to use comes out much better. Not always an option though and even then, I can end up with some pretty rough edges so everything you see has been treated to a session with an orbit sander and then some touching up by hand sanding. There are still some nasty splinters that catch me out but the problem spots are being taken care of bit by bit.

- Andy
« Last Edit: October 27, 2017, 03:33:58 am by andy-sf »

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #38 on: October 27, 2017, 09:15:54 am »
I would really suggest you're at the ideal stage now to either put curves or diagonals in the corners of your backscene boards so you don't end up with 90 degree scenery. Believe me, it will look so much better.

Offline Bealman

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #39 on: October 27, 2017, 09:33:43 am »
Agree. NPN  did an excellent job with that on Belchford Bletchford  :D
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline Innovationgame

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #40 on: October 27, 2017, 09:38:02 am »
I would really suggest you're at the ideal stage now to either put curves or diagonals in the corners of your backscene boards so you don't end up with 90 degree scenery. Believe me, it will look so much better.
I used 3mm White Standard Foamex PVC Foam Board (Matte Finish), 48"X 10" from this site https://www.cutplasticsheeting.co.uk/browse_by_material/. They will cut it to size and it bends beautifully within the corners.
With kind regards
Laurence
My personal website is a bit of a mish mash
www.innovationgame.com

Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #41 on: October 27, 2017, 10:02:50 pm »
Thanks for the tip NPN/Bealman/Lawrence! I always intended to do something about the corners, but wasn't sure what. Having just looked at NPN's Bletchford thread, I think the diagonal treatment should work great. I have ordered some backscenes and will experiment a little with the size of the diagonal that is needed. In the meantime, it's nice to have a break from woodworking!

- Andy

Offline jools1959

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #42 on: November 03, 2017, 09:56:14 am »
Hi Andy,

Very impressed with your wood butchery skills, it put's a lot of us to shame, including me  :'( :'( :'(  I see that your using the Woodland Scenic track bed which is what I plan to use as well but can I ask, what are you using to secure the track to the road bed?

I'm going to use Peco code 55 flexitrack, pin it in place and then ballast with either diluted PVA or magic ballast, then when dry, remove the pins.  Are you doing the same or do you have a better method?

Best wishes.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2017, 10:01:52 am by jools1959 »

Offline andy-sf

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #43 on: November 03, 2017, 09:57:08 pm »
what are you using to secure the track to the road bed?

I'm currently using the Woodland Scenics Foam Tack Glue. It's great for laying the roadbed, but also really nice to work with for the track itself. I generally get about 10mins to tweak the placement before the glue sets enough to hold it in place. Typically, I'll just use a couple of pushpins to position the track to get the flow I want and then start soldering feeders to the next piece of track. Once I'm done with that, the glue is just about ready for the pins to be removed. Obviously, if you're quick at soldering (I'm getting better but still fairly slow) you may need to kill a little more time before removing the pins and moving on...

- Andy

Offline Webbo

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Re: Molesworth Vale
« Reply #44 on: November 04, 2017, 12:25:28 am »
Hi Andy

First, let me complement you on the fine narrative and pictures you have presented describing your layout development. Also, I like the layout plan and your aim of significant terrain in your scenic areas.

I'm curious as to why you are building this as 4 sections that are designed to be separated even after the track is laid? You might have already answered this somewhere in this thread.

Webbo 

 

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