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Author Topic: L'esprit de Lavaux  (Read 2858 times)

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Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #45 on: June 20, 2018, 05:07:17 pm »
@Snowwolflair "4:1 or better where the ballast is in open space and don't just spray, completely wet it and add a little detergent into the spray to break the surface tension." Excellent suggestions thanks!

@Newportnobby & @Train Waiting "an old eye-dropper thing" ... Sounds like an investment worth making Ta!

I'm always a bit worried putting water on to the baseboard with electrikery running there too - but I'll try to be brave!  :o

Cheers  :beers:

Offline Snowwolflair

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #46 on: June 20, 2018, 05:10:33 pm »
Disconnect all power when using any liquids as the electrolysis effect will damage your rails.   Once it dries there won’t be any problems.

Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #47 on: June 23, 2018, 08:02:47 pm »
Working on the far side of the layout - in the tunnel under Grandvaux - I cleaned along the tracks and used a scalpel to get rid of anything I considered too close to the rails.



Once I was happy that the area was completely clean I was ready to try again at Ballasting!




Using the Ballast Magic Powder - but this time following some good advice - at a ratio of 4:1 (ballast to powder). I then swept away any extra ballast from between each set of rails and along the sides - to help ensure better running I hope! Trying to get the ballast pilled up in the middle.



Once I was happy with it I gave it a VERY good dousing with the water spray!



Now it was just a case of waiting for it to dry ...


Meanwhile - back in the bat cave other near side tunnel ... this is how it's now looking:



Again using the 4:1 ratio I got much better results and feel I've got this as good as I can, subject to a touch-up with some paint. I took particular care to clean out and around the point in the tunnel!



Still, this point, when operated manually, is giving a bit of a problem  ??? - not moving fully or at all at times - will have to see how it behaves when powered!

Cheers  :beers:
« Last Edit: June 24, 2018, 09:14:59 pm by GreyWolf »

Online weave

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #48 on: June 24, 2018, 07:33:28 am »
Good morning Mr. Wolf,

I don't know the reason why but have had problems in the past with hand operating Kato points.

 I think I was perhaps being too gentle with it as with the power it does make a hard click over sound.

Hope that makes sense and hope it works properly when powered up.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #49 on: August 05, 2018, 03:01:22 pm »
An update on where I'm currently at ... and why I've not been posting much lately!

First to finish off the last posing about the tunnel under Grandvaux ... this is how it looks now. You can see that some of the ballast along the sides has 'cracked' ... meaning the mix didn't hold and the material has been swept/hoovered up.


The same problem persists inside the main part of the tunnel …


But I've decided to put the lid on it for now! Still, have to decide whether to glue down the upper track on to the 'lid'. This would give more stability but would mean not being able to remove the lid in case of derailments; not really necessary as the side of the tunnel (at the edge of the board) is not closed off.


Also, the 'lid' (above) is the floor of the Grandvaux Tunnel so will need some ballast too? Things to think about.

For now, I have another problem …

I had used a 3:1 ratio mix for a darker "ballast like" ground for the goods yard area. This was 1 part 2mm Grey Ballast plus 2 parts Peco scenic material (black) to 3 parts Ballast Magic.


And the result looked quite promising … at first. So I got over excited and covered the two ground spaces between the yard lines.


I left this to dry for about two days … it was then I noticed the problem. Although the ground 'looked' quite good …


Even a slight pressure with my thumb on the material and it started to crumble … it seems that the ballast magic just couldn't fix the very small particles of the Peco materials.


This meant that I had to 'lift' all the material again  :censored: … and have cleaned the area even more than shown here. Ho Hum!  :'(


IRL I did spot an Am 843 shunter going through Geneva with some new shiny yellow hoppers in tow, with another Am 843 pushing from behind.




 
“Never mind all this trainspotting, what about your layout” I  hear you cry! Well, I do have THREE good reasons for there being NO progress.

1. Visitors … we've had quite a few including Brov'n Law with Girlfriend, the Parents In Law (we went to see the TdF), then a surprise visit from a friend from Alaska, and to follow we have friends of the wife coming from Holland – with a caravan!

2. Dead Computer … yup you guessed it, I didn't have a data back-up! Computer refuses to load windows 10, and after telling me something about 'security kernels' it now won't even try. So I had to spend many hours at the Command Prompt [that's C:\windows\myfiles\etc] moving files, directory by directory – very painful.

3. IT'S TOO DARN'D HOT … as the layout is in the loft area it's even hotter … so I'm NOT going up there; 34 C in the share here.

Right, that's me just about up to date; after the Dutch Caravan we're off on hols (finally) then I start learning German in September! TTFN

Cheers  :beers:


Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #50 on: August 15, 2018, 08:39:32 am »
The 'Ballasting Saga' continues ... now that the heat wave has abated I can get back up into the loft!  ;)

This time I've tried the "traditional" method ... PVA (wood/craft) glue mixed 50 - 50 with water and a couple of drops washing up liquid.



I brushed on the glue-mix then the Peco/Ballast mix was heaped on and left to dry overnight.



Eager to see the result I started to brush off the excess ... and was a bit disappointed as again most of the material hadn't stuck! But on the other side, it seems to have caught better ...



I will continue to experiment with this ...

In the meantime, I've put together a couple of tunnel entrances ... on (what I'm now calling) the East Tunnel.
First the Southside ... placed but not fixed (obvs!)




You can see the cardboard backing that is holding the retaining walls and the entrance together - with some excess glue that will become some kind of green growth once I get it back to the paint shop!  >:D

And the entrance on the Northside of the East Tunnel ...




Looking inside the tunnel (from the Southside) you can see the crossover and the access slot for any derailments!



I still have LOTS of groundwork to do ... and will have to check heights before finally placing these. Tally Ho!

Cheers  :beers:

Offline Innovationgame

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #51 on: August 15, 2018, 08:48:33 am »
Sorry to hear all your woes.  Computers can be extremely frustrating, even when you've spent quite a chunk of your working life fraternising with them!

On the ballast front, I've found Ballast Magic with Noch - Profi Ballast - Granite Grey (250g) (N-Gauge/ TT Gauge) works extremely well.  It sets like concrete and the only problem is if you need to remove it, it takes quite a bit of shifting.
With kind regards
Laurence
My personal website is a bit of a mish mash
www.innovationgame.com

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #52 on: August 15, 2018, 09:57:24 am »
I can't really tell from the pic but it looks to me as if you've spread the ballast too thick and the glue can't cope with it all. Maybe a couple of thinner layers would work better :hmmm:
Purely my opinion but the tunnel mouths look too tall for me :-\
They do look good, though. What make are they please, or have you cast them yourself?

Online weave

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #53 on: August 15, 2018, 10:40:16 am »
Hi,

I have probably got the wrong end of the stick but the way I read it is that you have put the glue down and put the ballast on top of it as if it was pure glue rather than put the ballast down and then put the glue/water/washing liquid on top (using a pipette or spray) to let it seep through.

Hope helps and sorry if a misunderstanding.

Like the tunnels by the way.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Online Bealman

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #54 on: August 15, 2018, 10:46:49 am »
The ancient method of ballasting is the old spread it dry to the correct requirements, then drop the PVA washing up liquid onto it.

The worst job in the hobby and mind boggling boring.

Gets interesting under points, though. :beers:
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #55 on: August 15, 2018, 10:58:48 am »
Quote from: Innovationgame
Sorry to hear all your woes.  Computers can be extremely frustrating, even when you've spent quite a chunk of your working life fraternising with them!

Managed to take the computer to the PC doctor so it's all better now and is busy reinstalling stuff!  :claphappy:

Quote from: Innovationgame
On the ballast front, I've found Ballast Magic with Noch - Profi Ballast - Granite Grey (250g) (N-Gauge/ TT Gauge) works extremely well.  It sets like concrete and the only problem is if you need to remove it, it takes quite a bit of shifting.

Was using Ballast Magic with a grey granite inside the tunnels ... what MIX proportions do you use Laurence?
Unfortunately, Noch will not deliver to Switzerland - so would have to source that from somewhere else!

Cheers  :beers:

Offline Innovationgame

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #56 on: August 15, 2018, 11:31:40 am »
I was using Ballast Magic with a grey granite inside the tunnels ... what MIX proportions do you use Laurence?
Unfortunately, Noch will not deliver to Switzerland - so would have to source that from somewhere else!
Cheers  :beers:
I buy my ballast from the New Modellers shop https://www.newmodellersshop.co.uk/, but they may charge more for shipping to Europe.  I use a ratio of six parts ballast to one part Ballast Magic (6:1) and it is really good.  There's hardly anything to hoover up afterwards, apart from the stray bits that I missed brushing into the main ballast.  After laying it, I spray it with a fine mist of water.  I use the Ballast Magic sprayer, but I'm sure any fine sprayer will do.  You do need to make sure it's thoroughly wet - you can tell because it becomes much darker when wet.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2018, 11:33:10 am by Innovationgame »
With kind regards
Laurence
My personal website is a bit of a mish mash
www.innovationgame.com

Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #57 on: August 15, 2018, 12:26:08 pm »
Quote from: Newportnobby
I can't really tell from the pic but it looks to me as if you've spread the ballast too thick and the glue can't cope with it all. Maybe a couple of thinner layers would work better :hmmm:

Yup, did that intentionally to make sure it covered - but might not have been the best idea! Will try another layer or two with thicker glue and less ballast material.

Quote from: Newportnobby
Purely my opinion but the tunnel mouths look too tall for me :-\
They do look good, though. What make are they please, or have you cast them yourself?

Thanks, I have some more 'touches' to do before placing them. Haven't tried any engines or carriages yet, but wouldn't want to try and lower them as I might get double deck carriages at some point!  :D

I think I got them from Hattons; https://www.hattons.co.uk/33773/Woodland_Scenics_C1157_Double_Track_Tunnel_Portals_Cut_Stone_Pack_Of_2/StockDetail.aspx
https://www.hattons.co.uk/33775/Woodland_Scenics_C1159_Retaining_Walls_Cut_Stone_Pack_Of_6/StockDetail.aspx

Took some undercoat layers as they are white plaster!  :doh:

Cheers  :beers:

Offline GreyWolf

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #58 on: August 15, 2018, 12:35:48 pm »
Quote from: weave
I have probably got the wrong end of the stick but the way I read it is that you have put the glue down and put the ballast on top of it as if it was pure glue rather than put the ballast down and then put the glue/water/washing liquid on top (using a pipette or spray) to let it seep through.
Hope helps and sorry if a misunderstanding.

Quote from: Bealman
The ancient method of ballasting is the old spread it dry to the correct requirements, then drop the PVA washing up liquid onto it.

CLANG!!
That's the sound of the penny finally dropping  :-[
SO ... I should put the ballast material down to desired thickness / coverage THEN 'spray on' the water/glue mix? Right'O I think I've got it now!
 :thankyousign: Both

Quote from: weave
Like the tunnels by the way.
Cheers weave  :beers:

Ta ... quite pleased with them.

Cheers  :beers:

Offline NeMo

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Re: L'esprit de Lavaux
« Reply #59 on: August 15, 2018, 01:36:19 pm »
This time I've tried the "traditional" method ... PVA (wood/craft) glue mixed 50 - 50 with water and a couple of drops washing up liquid.

Doesn't work for N, in my experience. You need to spray on IPA periodically, which breaks the surface tension much better than detergent, and then the PVA soaks into the ballast nicely. Just been doing this job a few minutes ago, in fact!

Cheers, NeMo

Edit: add the IPA after pipetting on a little of the soapy glue/water mixture. You'll see the white globs disappear before your very eyes!

 

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