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Author Topic: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)  (Read 47220 times)

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Online crewearpley40

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #540 on: May 04, 2019, 08:53:31 AM »
Another innovative idea the buzzer. Keep up the good work
blue / grey era diesels / electrics and suitable stock

Online crewearpley40

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #541 on: May 04, 2019, 09:35:53 AM »
ilove the local feel of the freight trains in the yard richard,superb backscene and a local country feel with those apple trees.thank you for posting superb photos. chris
blue / grey era diesels / electrics and suitable stock

Online kirky

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #542 on: May 04, 2019, 07:26:00 PM »




All looking fantastically interesting Richard and I cant wait to get my hands on that lot. I think I might need to cultivate an extra finger or two though. Theres lots of bits on that handheld.
Do you have a link for the vibrating motors?

Cheers
kirky

Northallerton is in the August 2018 edition of Raiway Modeller

and in real life at the Hartlepool MODEL RAILWAY CLUB ANNUAL EXHIBITION
October 2019



Layout: Northallerton: http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=1671.msg16930#msg16930

www.northallertonngauge.co.uk

Cleveland Model Railway club website: www.clevelandmrc.club

Offline belstone

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #543 on: May 04, 2019, 09:47:47 PM »
A nifty solution to a problem which baffles me. What d'you think is causing the issue on the point please? With my Peco electros it's almost always gunge between the point blades or dirty wheels on the loco concerned.

The main problem is that I am trying to carry out complex shunting operations at scale speeds.  Voltage at the rails at this speed is 2V or less, and with small, light steam locomotives I'm just asking for trouble. Diesels are so much easier. Regular wheel and rail cleaning helps, but I also have the legacy of some bad decisions taken early on with tracklaying, especially using balsawood for the trackbed. It's not as flat as it should be.

@kirky These are the motors:  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/10-Pack-Vibrating-Vibration-Vibrator-Motor-25x20mm-1-2v-4-8v/262883990235  The handheld unit works fine two-handed - left thumb for the uncouplers, right hand for the controller and point switches. The switch above the control knob switches in a 100 ohm resistor to tame coreless and small can motors.

I now have four buzzers, mounted in plastic clamps intended for electrical conduit. For the time being they are wired in two pairs through pushbuttons and powered by a 6v lantern battery.  The only place they don't always get a loco going is if it stalls directly above the join between the two boards.  Readers with long memories may recall that the boards are MDF sheet bonded to welded steel frames with Tigerseal.  It will take more than a little 3V motor with a brass weight on it to get any kind of vibration around the bonded areas. More traditionally constructed baseboards would probably be fine. 

I'm thinking at the moment that Longframlington's life on the exhibition circuit might be fairly short.  It has been a steep learning curve, the layout fairly bristles with experimental bits and pieces, and there is an awful lot that could be done better second time around.  Ian Futers used to build a new exhibition layout every year, and probably still does: I think there is a lot to be said for that approach.  I'm currently wavering between another N gauge branch terminus, this time based on an actual prototype (Allendale): a simple 2mm finescale terminus with minimal motive power requirements (Lauder): and an Minories-style city terminus with complex pointwork and diesels, just to do something completely different. I also want to get going on my Waverley Route "big layout", Stobs, but that won't be ready for a while yet.

Richard

Offline Chris in Prague

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #544 on: May 05, 2019, 05:20:15 PM »
Thanks, Richard, for the update. You make a lot of interesting points (no pun intended). I would hope that you could, at least, reuse the buildings from Longframlington? I've really enjoyed watching this layout develop and the varied trains running on it. Allendale sounds an interesting successor.

Offline belstone

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #545 on: May 12, 2019, 01:21:57 PM »
One month to Longfram's show debut at Felixstowe and I am up to my neck in electrical stuff.  The electrics on my layout were never planned, they just evolved as I added more experimental bits and pieces.  So in a (probably doomed) effort to get some kind of electrical reliability I came up with a list of works:

- Rewire the handheld unit with a new socket and thinner wire to prevent further pin failures.
- Add two more pushbuttons for the anti-stall "buzzers"
- Make up a second handheld unit as a spare
- Replace the ramshackle power supply system with a cased unit providing power for the controller, servo boards, buzzers and lighting rig.

Step one seemed to be going fine.  I had used 15-pin D sub connectors and a VGA monitor cable to link the handheld to the layout, but not all the 15 pins on the cable were actually wired up. So I bought what was described as a "fully wired" VGA cable, rewired the handheld, plugged it in with the new cable and found all kinds of weird stuff going on with the point switches. I then discovered that on my new VGA cable, a few of the pins are connected together internally. Presumably some kind of industry standard thing for VGA cables, in my innocence I assumed a "fully-wired" cable with 15 pin connectors would have 15 separate wires, but it seems not.

So I have ordered some 15 core cable and D sub  plugs, and will have to make up a cable myself which is mildly annoying.  The cable is rated 0.25A continuous load per core which should be OK for everything except the buzzer motors which run on about 0.9A per pair, so I will feed those through relays rather than directly through the button switches I have added to the control box.

I was hoping to run everything off a single transformer but have found I need a separate power supply for the lights to stop them flickering.  So I will have two power supplies coming into the layout: 16V AC to power the controller, with a rectifier/regulator under the baseboard to give me a smooth 12V DC for the servo boards and relays, a second regulator to provide 6V for the buzzers, and a separate 12v DC supply for the lights.  All bits on order, so I should be able to get that done next weekend.

If I get time I want to draw a full circuit diagram for the layout.  If I get a failure at a show, it will be a hundred times easier to fix if I don't have to try and work out how I wired stuff up a couple of years ago.  I had a look under the baseboard just now and there is a circuit board under there whose function I have completely forgotten.  It is connected up so it must do something...

Richard

Offline Milton Rail

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #546 on: May 13, 2019, 06:58:33 AM »
Layout is coming along superbly, good luck with the run up to Felixstowe, like you your innovative case-kum-stand, very neat thinking!

Offline Bealman

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #547 on: May 13, 2019, 07:34:17 AM »
Richard, I sympathise completely. My layout wiring started off in methodical fashion, but as time went by, I started increasingly the complexity by experimenting. Once I found something that worked, I hardwired it in without documenting it.

It's a nightmare which would be unacceptable under exhibition conditions. Your list of must-do's before the exhibition sounds like a very sensible approach.

Good luck with it, and I'd be interested to know what the unknown PCB is for!  :thumbsup:
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline Chris in Prague

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #548 on: May 13, 2019, 08:41:48 AM »
I hope you'll be able to sort out everything in time, Richard.

Offline belstone

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #549 on: May 13, 2019, 09:31:31 AM »

Good luck with it, and I'd be interested to know what the unknown PCB is for!  :thumbsup:

It's a switching unit, so I can use the outputs from one of the servo boards to power a bank of relays for frog polarity switching.  I needed two, built one myself then found I could buy a relay board on eBay with built-in signal sensing for less than the cost of the separate components.

I made a start on a wiring diagram, then ran into problems as the connectors between the two boards are wrapped in sticky tape and it will take me ages with a multimeter to work out which wire goes where.   ??? I've done about 75% of it so far.

The idea of all this electronic complexity was to achieve more reliable operation - servos rather than solenoid motors, relays instead of microswitches.  It's a good idea let down by my tendency to use whatever materials come to hand rather than ordering the right bits and waiting for them to arrive.

Next time I'll document stuff as I go along. (Actually I probably won't, but it is nice to have good intentions.)

Richard

Offline Bealman

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #550 on: May 13, 2019, 09:39:57 AM »
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Sounds like the mess I got into!

Somewhere along the line I managed to get optocouplers into the recipe!

Anyway, it's what's up top that counts, and what's above the baseboards on Longframlington is brilliant.

Good luck with the exhibition! Looking forward to reports!
« Last Edit: May 13, 2019, 09:40:58 AM by Bealman »
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline belstone

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #551 on: May 24, 2019, 10:57:17 PM »
The latest round of electrical work is now just about done and I can run trains again.  Everything still works which is a great relief.



This is the new power supply, which I call the "Spinetta Box" after the Italian wine-maker whose logo it bears.  Three separate power feeds to the layout via a single 6-core cable: 16V AC for the controller, 12V DC for all the other bits, and a separate 12V supply for the lighting strip.  There is also a 16V AC socket to power my rolling road via a Bachmann train set controller.



Inside the box: a six-way extension cable, some power supply units salvaged from dead consumer electronics, wiring for a couple of output sockets, and a cooling fan which came out of an old computer power supply.  I doubt it is really needed, but I've never tried running the layout in exhibition conditions before (6 hours continuous use) and the fan was free.



Having rewired the handheld unit and added two buttons for the "buzzers" I made up a second unit so I have a spare in case of failure.  This one is built round a Gaugemaster controller, so it has a slide switch for direction rather than the toggle switch of the first AMR-based one. Soldering the 15-pin connectors for the cables took ages and really tested my eyesight.



The wiring on this layout is now really horrible.  Rat's nest doesn't even begin to describe it. I just hope I don't find myself trying to diagnose faults in this lot in the middle of a show.  Two weeks to Longfram's Felixstowe debut, and my Land Rover needs a new gearbox if I am to get there at all. I like to keep busy :)

Richard

Offline Innovationgame

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #552 on: May 25, 2019, 07:51:34 AM »
The wiring on this layout is now really horrible.  Rat's nest doesn't even begin to describe it. I just hope I don't find myself trying to diagnose faults in this lot in the middle of a show.  Two weeks to Longfram's Felixstowe debut, and my Land Rover needs a new gearbox if I am to get there at all. I like to keep busy :)

Richard
That looks quite tidy compared with my hanging strings of spaghetti.
With kind regards
Laurence
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Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #553 on: May 25, 2019, 12:50:53 PM »




 :goggleeyes: :o
Be afraid, Nobby, be very afraid :worried:

Offline belstone

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Re: Longframlington (Northumbrian branch line)
« Reply #554 on: May 25, 2019, 10:24:33 PM »
Good operating session this evening, with classes K1, J27, J35, Ivatt 4MT and BRCW Type 2 on freight and passenger services.  An hour of running trains with only one derailment (back to back slightly out on a mineral wagon) and hardly any need to use the "buzzers".  Here is D5307 departing for Morpeth with the last train of the day, that distinctive Sulzer sound rattling the roof tiles: train crew on bonus and keen to get back to Morpeth as fast as the state of the track will permit.



Richard

 

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