Jump to content

Philip's Workbench

Rate this topic


murphaph
 Share

Recommended Posts

23 minutes ago, irishthump said:

Fantastic space for a layout! Looking forward to see how the helix works with the various levels planned. Personally I wouldn't be brave enough to try a helix and I think I'd just do a round the room with long gradients to any upper level(s).

That was the original idea but Robert Roche made the think it over with a comment he made. The advantage of having each section (say Curragh to Kildare, Monasterevan to Portarlington, Cherryville Jcn to Athy as three distinct shelves and being linked by hidden nolix/around the room helix is that the time taken to move from say Kildare to Athy can be somewhat realistic as trains can be queued on the spiral and only reappear after a decent amount of time has passed.

The other problem with a continuous grade is that you need anywhere that there will be shunting/uncoupling to be dead flat, or the rolling stock will run away downhill as soon as the loco is uncoupled. As I want to run prototypically long trains, these flat areas would be quite long and then the continuous grade needs to be steeper to compensate, but I want to keep it well below a 2% grade, preferably more like 1.5%. I should have the length around the room to keep to that and get from one level to the next in one lap of the room.

When I do start building, the spiral and staging areas will be built first and extensively tested before anything goes in front of them. If the concept is flawed I should find out before building the whole thing. If the spiral works then the flat stuff will be relatively trivial, I hope.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Noel said:

Sounds like an excellent concept. Let us know when you've sketched up some track plans. (railmodeller pro on mac is good)

Will do, but the track plans will effectively be copying the prototype of the early 90's. I will have to make one major concession to practicality: The branch to the Athy cement factory will pass over the Barrow bridge and run directly into the factory sidings, rather than via the headshunt (stub of Wolfhill branch) that is/was there in reality. There are/were two parallel sidings in the factory with a headshunt to release a loco so it's not that much of a cheat. I just don't have the room to do it exactly like the real layout, so instead of propelling the bubbles into the factory they will be hauled in, the loco will be released in the headshunt, run around and haul the bubbles back out to return to KIldare to again run around and head back to Castlemungret.

The rest of the track plans should be as near as identical to the prototype locations as possible. The goal is to automate all the trains to run to a real timetable, with a bit of manual intervention required at Kildare, Athy cement and occasionally Portarlington (sometimes Curragh racecourse specials ran on to Portarlington to reverse if Kildare was blocked and there were some regular freight workings like the coal and oil that ran Limerick-Ballina via Portarlington while the WRC was closed for prolonged periods).

The shelves will be arrange "logically", that is the more northerly reaches of the prototype will be higher up. Curragh-KIldare will be the top shelf as the trains come down from "Dublin" staging, then head off onto the spiral for a while, before re-emerging onto the Monasterevan-Portarlington shelf, then head to the spiral again and down to "Provincial" staging, bypassing the Cherryville-Athy shelf (lowest visible level). Trains to Waterford will obviously use the spiral to bypass the Monasterevan-Portarlington shelf. 

I wanted a few things from my layout, including at least some semaphore signalling and a level crossing. The Athy/cement factory route offers me both. There's a lot of track to build so I am making a conscious decision not to model towns, only the stations. In reality all these stations were on the edges of their host towns thankfully. Most of my trackage will be through open countryside. This should be achievable. I'm playing with the idea of fading the shelf lighting in and out so that only the shelf with an active train on it is illuminated, the other two being dark. There will be no ambient room lighting. It will be following the "theatre" approach as proposed by Rice in his shelf layouts book, where the shelf is the stage, the trains are the actors, coming on doing their scene, then exiting the stage. 

It's not going to be a rapidly progressing build either. It's going to take years rather than months. That's fine with me. I am in no rush 🙂

1 hour ago, Adrian said:

Very nice dude, looking forward to following this!

I’ve just caught up on this thread and have a noob question: you mention brake fluid for stripping the coaches in the first few posts...do you mean actual car brake fluid and if so why do you use this? Presuming it’s something to do with not being too harsh? Thanks in advance :)

It's cheap and it works very well on those Lima coaches. It must be the mineral type, not the silicone based stuff. That won't do anything. Everyone seems to have their own favourite stripper but I don't think there's a one-for-all because paint formulations are different. I have also used isopropyl alcohol on these coaches with good effect.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Tiled now. I was able to salvage about a third of the tiles used from a previous miscalculation. They still make these "utility room tiles" and they're cheap so I ordered more and although there is a slight colour and size difference, I think I got away with it. Most of the floor will vanish under the layout anyway. The tiles are 30 * 30 cm to give the room some scale. No baby GMs were hurt in the making of this photoshoot:

IMG_20220106_145836341.thumb.jpg.ae05d11f977176e56473c0101f023e8a.jpg

IMG_20220106_145749741.thumb.jpg.76345354e4e8ae057e6b1a49e2a6f851.jpg

IMG_20220106_145635590.thumb.jpg.5a21e31ff49f4b6dd8b2f347c2f637e6.jpg

IMG_20220106_145539591.thumb.jpg.695250b2f7332599f437b28954c27fab.jpg

IMG_20220106_145436586.thumb.jpg.d28d70c7a513ee8e84c7395f4c4b5f51.jpg

I wish I could just let rip on building the layout but for now it's still "shared space", though I will be more selective about what non-railway stuff can reside here. For example my tiling tools won't be needed again any time soon, so they can go into the attic for now.

I'm giving serious consideration to reversing the door so it opens outwards. I didn't give enough thought to it when I hung the doors in the basement. Bit of a faff reversing German doors as they are surrounded by expanding foam and this needs cutting away to free the frame.

Edited by murphaph
  • Like 6
  • WOW! 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That looks a good space ,but as ever planning will fill twice the space! Door as is means careful design but easier to sell in future perhaps- does door if moved open in to a walkway ? - risk of belting somebody important might not go down to well..... Having like Patrick a walk around with out bridges or duck under layout takes a bit of skill but might end up with something more interesting that a "belt around the walls" sort of layout.   Nothing wrong with a roundy of course but you can make a masterpiece. Now in N  gauge of course you could model a great swath of scenery  with a single line passing through.   

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, murphaph said:

Tiled now. I was able to salvage about a third of the tiles used from a previous miscalculation. They still make these "utility room tiles" and they're cheap so I ordered more and although there is a slight colour and size difference, I think I got away with it. Most of the floor will vanish under the layout anyway. The tiles are 30 * 30 cm to give the room some scale. No baby GMs were hurt in the making of this photoshoot:

IMG_20220106_145836341.thumb.jpg.ae05d11f977176e56473c0101f023e8a.jpg

IMG_20220106_145749741.thumb.jpg.76345354e4e8ae057e6b1a49e2a6f851.jpg

IMG_20220106_145635590.thumb.jpg.5a21e31ff49f4b6dd8b2f347c2f637e6.jpg

IMG_20220106_145539591.thumb.jpg.695250b2f7332599f437b28954c27fab.jpg

IMG_20220106_145436586.thumb.jpg.d28d70c7a513ee8e84c7395f4c4b5f51.jpg

I wish I could just let rip on building the layout but for now it's still "shared space", though I will be more selective about what non-railway stuff can reside here. For example my tiling tools won't be needed again any time soon, so they can go into the attic for now.

I'm giving serious consideration to reversing the door so it opens outwards. I didn't give enough thought to it when I hung the doors in the basement. Bit of a faff reversing German doors as they are surrounded by expanding foam and this needs cutting away to free the frame.

Great layout space!!!

  • Like 1
  • WOW! 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Robert Shrives said:

That looks a good space ,but as ever planning will fill twice the space! Door as is means careful design but easier to sell in future perhaps- does door if moved open in to a walkway ? - risk of belting somebody important might not go down to well..... Having like Patrick a walk around with out bridges or duck under layout takes a bit of skill but might end up with something more interesting that a "belt around the walls" sort of layout.   Nothing wrong with a roundy of course but you can make a masterpiece. Now in N  gauge of course you could model a great swath of scenery  with a single line passing through.   

Hi Robert,

I have thought an awful lot about what I want from a layout and changed my mind several times along the way. When the room was originally planned it was ca. 2015 and I have never really seriously considered modelling Irish outline at that stage due to the dearth of readily available RTR stock. I was likely going to go with an N scale US or German layout but well, when I heard about IRM etc. I changed my mind, even though I knew I would get considerably less trackage in the room in 1:76. It's definitely worth it to be able to model something closer to my heart. 

So then I had to decide what sort of layout I can get in 1:76 in that room, that still gives me what I most wanted from the original. That is long mainline sections, running scale length trains at prototypical speeds. I came to the conclusion that I would need to have the layout use the maximum dimensions of the room to come close to achieving those main goals.

I also want to be able to sit at a modelling bench and do some modelling while my trains are running in the background. If I used the middle of the room rather than the perimeter, I feel that would require sacrificing too much layout to achieve.

I am fairly sure I cannot do a walk around without a bridge/duckunder (I plan an elaborate welded steel multi-level bridge, how successful it will be in practice remains to be seen!) because in 21mm I cannot do a 180° turn at the end of any peninsula due to minimum radius not being met. This was something I seriously considered as I am a big fan of the typical US basement empire, but they usually have three times the space I have or more.

I also have to consider how many modelling years I have available to me. I want to start something I know I can finish and the cameo layout design really appeals to me. I love the idea of the trains being the actors on the stage.

The door shouldn't hit anyone if opened the other way. It's the basement landing. The other side of the door looks like this:

IMG_20211122_154509955.thumb.jpg.1d8d4fd4f8026b319b083a856f903faa.jpg

 

  • Like 11
  • Agree 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

And a final update for a while....

I picked up some very good quality (really solid and heavy) ex office furniture in great nick for a pittance from a guy not 750m from my house. These desks and cabinets will serve as my modelling workbench for the foreseeable future. Total length is 3.6m so plenty of room for "parallel projects" lol.

They are narrow enough that they won't interfere with building the layout around the perimeter walls hopefully. Eventually I may dispose of one of the desks but the little roller filing cabinets are actually super for paints and the suspended file drawer could be used for card, styrene sheets etc.

IMG_20220108_142101734.thumb.jpg.75284240bea394ae1e8205da99d17b24.jpg

IMG_20220108_151226646.thumb.jpg.1faa1c8fd241916a50d28547cf8eb599.jpg

 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My first attempt at making my own track of any kind. I probably should have started with a straight lol. And I probably shouldn't be have done a curved point but I've ripped up my 00 track from my test oval and I want to reuse the position sensors so that means mimicking the old track path. I also wanted to push the minimum radius to the limit to see if my stock will go around it in 21mm. If not it's better to know that now.

I used the old 00 point as a reference for my homemade template.

The point will not get any more sleepers. It's just supposed to be functional. The track will be the same, one sleeper in five in place to keep it in gauge.

I know, it's rough but I've already learned a bit. It's slow going.

IMG_20220114_165923041.thumb.jpg.4ff20439cf84e4f7da1d19d6714b5beb.jpg

IMG_20220114_170709370.thumb.jpg.6a4224facded83e6bea224e53f7191d6.jpg

  • Like 8
  • Agree 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is indeed. I am banking on not having to do all my points in PCB though! Martin Wynne is making tremendous progress with 3d printing support in Templot so long term I hope to jump on that horse. No need for gauge tools using his method. Just print and plug the track in. It keeps itself in gauge. Obviously some skills will transfer, the filing and soldering of the crossing vee and switchblades for example.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 14/1/2022 at 4:08 PM, murphaph said:

My first attempt at making my own track of any kind. I probably should have started with a straight lol. And I probably shouldn't be have done a curved point but I've ripped up my 00 track from my test oval and I want to reuse the position sensors so that means mimicking the old track path. I also wanted to push the minimum radius to the limit to see if my stock will go around it in 21mm. If not it's better to know that now.

I used the old 00 point as a reference for my homemade template.

The point will not get any more sleepers. It's just supposed to be functional. The track will be the same, one sleeper in five in place to keep it in gauge.

I know, it's rough but I've already learned a bit. It's slow going.

IMG_20220114_165923041.thumb.jpg.4ff20439cf84e4f7da1d19d6714b5beb.jpg

IMG_20220114_170709370.thumb.jpg.6a4224facded83e6bea224e53f7191d6.jpg

Well done you!

  • Like 1
  • Agree 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So it's basically finished after a good bit of fettling which has helped me better understand the critical dimensions. John Mayne's brake van has the dubious "honour" of being the first piece of 21mm rolling stock in my possession and the first to run over this "masterpiece" lol:

IMG_20220116_195134151.thumb.jpg.42f31cbe65007ed4bd197920b5496aa1.jpg

IMG_20220116_195105014.thumb.jpg.8002386df24a73edf8ded95d28da4d90.jpg

What's the general consensus on rebating/joggling the "straight" stock rail at the switch blade tip with bull head rail? A must do or not really required in 4mm?

  • Like 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/1/2022 at 9:16 AM, murphaph said:

Tiled now. I was able to salvage about a third of the tiles used from a previous miscalculation. They still make these "utility room tiles" and they're cheap so I ordered more and although there is a slight colour and size difference, I think I got away with it. Most of the floor will vanish under the layout anyway. The tiles are 30 * 30 cm to give the room some scale. No baby GMs were hurt in the making of this photoshoot:

IMG_20220106_145836341.thumb.jpg.ae05d11f977176e56473c0101f023e8a.jpg

IMG_20220106_145749741.thumb.jpg.76345354e4e8ae057e6b1a49e2a6f851.jpg

IMG_20220106_145635590.thumb.jpg.5a21e31ff49f4b6dd8b2f347c2f637e6.jpg

IMG_20220106_145539591.thumb.jpg.695250b2f7332599f437b28954c27fab.jpg

IMG_20220106_145436586.thumb.jpg.d28d70c7a513ee8e84c7395f4c4b5f51.jpg

I wish I could just let rip on building the layout but for now it's still "shared space", though I will be more selective about what non-railway stuff can reside here. For example my tiling tools won't be needed again any time soon, so they can go into the attic for now.

I'm giving serious consideration to reversing the door so it opens outwards. I didn't give enough thought to it when I hung the doors in the basement. Bit of a faff reversing German doors as they are surrounded by expanding foam and this needs cutting away to free the frame.

Have you considered a "sliding pocket door"   The pocket could be placed in the hallway on either side where you have the display cases.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had considered a sliding door of some description and a pocket door would be the Rolls Royce option but as you say it would need to be built in front of the existing wall (load bearing) and the doors in the perpendicular walls to the left and right are only ca. 10cm from the wall we're talking about, so those door architraves would need trimming and I don't think the missus would sanction that. She'd also question why I was dumping an expensive enough glass door as well lol. I'm stuck with the glass door I think. It can be made to work as it is I suppose, with both the bridge for the track and the glass door opening inwards. Just need to put a bumper on the track swing bridge to make sure it prevents the glass door being rammed into it from someone on the outside.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 hours ago, murphaph said:

rebating/joggling the "straight" stock rail at the switch blade tip with bull head rail

Shouldn't be necessary.  The joggle is normally put in the diverging rail which ensures the gauge on the main line by allowing space for the switch rail.  When diverging, the joggle maintains the gauge of the switchrail on the other side.  It is an area that I have found needs much fettling to get right.

Ken

  • Informative 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Didn't realise there were two other doors that are so close in that landing, but a pocket door might still be possible within 10cm, if that's the depth you have without interfering with the trim around those doors on either side. EG https://www.homedepot.com/p/Masonite-32-in-x-80-in-Unfinished-Pocket-Interior-Door-Frame-59824/202082314?source=shoppingads&locale=en-US&pla&mtc=Shopping-VF-F_D30-G-D30-030_025_INT_DOORS-NA-NA-Feed-PLA_LIA-2144823-WF-AllInteriorDoors+PL3&cm_mmc=Shopping-VF-F_D30-G-D30-030_025_INT_DOORS-NA-NA-Feed-PLA_LIA-2144823-WF-AllInteriorDoors+PL3-71700000033101425-58700003868916472-92700031718764240&gclid=CjwKCAiAxJSPBhAoEiwAeO_fP3q6EJ_QS33u8E-ZI0EQUQPPYj5BYzWH_TEX9wfX2dHXQFZvNf9xdBoC6wwQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds 

I know this is from a US store but according to the specs the pocket is 3" deep and covering it with 1/2' plasterboard is still just under 10cm total. Might be worth checking locally for what's available.

Another solution to consider is a "Barn Door"

  • Informative 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Re comments on joggling of stockrails  check out the many and varied comments on the point building topics on  RM Web - generally it is supported and in 2mm essential as the rail does need to offer a smooth flow for the flange. 

Having just that bit more meat in the rail allowed by joggle/ set in the stock rail does allow the blade to be a bit thicker and thus more robust at the blade tip and gives more material to affix the tiebar - I think the fine trax idea of a plate that holds the blade and stock in vertical alignment with a pin solder to it that can rotate in the tiebar bar is a sublime idea removing all the risks of detached blade from tiebar when the fine soldered joint gives up.  

Robert 

  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought I'd post a pic of my gauges in case anyone else is interested in dipping their toe into 21mm.

The top 4 gauges are a pair of track gauges (true 21 mm, from the Scalefour Society stores, some of a handful of Irish 5'3" stuff they have available). In straight sections there's no difference between the roller and triangular gauges. In curved sections the triangular gauges are used to provide slight gauge widening. The retainers at the base of the triangle are used to hold the outer rail, the single retainer at the tip of the triangle holds the inner rail.

The black roller type gauge is a P4 (4' 8 1/2") check gauge, used to set the check rail position relative to the common crossing. I bought this just to see how it was made with the intention of having one made up to Irish gauge but it turns out it was made with a screw going through the rod and it could be easily disassembled and shimmed with 5 little circlips (sanded slightly between two sanding pads until the correct gauge was achieved) giving a check gauge of exactly 20.05mm which is "EM" standard converted up to 21mm. This was also purchased from the S4 Society stores.

The bottom two items are both back to back gauges machined/printed to to 19.3mm. The brass one is from John Mayne and the plastic one is from EDM Models.

I think this is all you need to build 21mm track to EM standards but with 21mm track gauge as opposed to 20.2mm.

IMO there are huge advantages to building your own track that go beyond the obvious correct gauge stuff and apply even to H0. Track and especially pointwork can be built that looks far more "flowing" and prototypical. There is no set track geometry on the real railway.

IMG_20220119_175534128.jpg

  • Like 2
  • Informative 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Amen to all of that Phil. Gauges are the only items to make track building different in 5'3 compared to 'standard' gauge, or any other for that matter. Rail and sleepers can be bought from any number of sources and you don't even need to do much soldering either, especially if you go for C&L. They do kits where the vee and blades are already machined, so all that is needed is to slide the chairs on to the rails and fix them to the sleepers with Daywat.

 On the other hand, it only takes an hour or so to file the rails (bull head easier than flat bottomed) and a complete point can be done in a couple of hours or less.

 Very much looking forward to seeing how you get on and hopefully to see others follow too.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the other gauge to get is a 21mm gauge button gauge - aimed at placing say in a point blade area to ensure gauge as blades thin.  

I have some stainless steel hair grips of ebay that are  good for holding rails as well.  

Hopefully 3D bases and plug chairs  or so printed that rails slide in will help those not too happy with soldering - that skill does open up so much.  

Robert  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Small update. Still no model making so don't get too excited...

I got sick of sticking the vent pipe from my spray booth out the window and it wasn't working very well anyway as a gust of wind would just blow the fumes back into the basement.

I've now plumbed into the house mechanical ventilation system. I fitted shut off valves to the house extraction ducts so I can maximise the draw when I am painting, if I need to. I'll try it without reducing the ventilation of the house first. Maybe it's enough of a draw at least for acrylics. I added some new ducting which had to be punched through the wall from utility room to my hobby room. 

The other big advantage is that I don't have the noise of the high rpm inbuilt fan in the spray booth. It was loud. Coupled with a good size compressor tank it should be a fairly calming environment in future.

IMG_20220226_160520493.thumb.jpg.27a446858d23e759d2134cad8e1fcbef.jpg

IMG_20220226_160454637.thumb.jpg.4fa3c257b901cc85979f6529fe66eb1a.jpg

Bit of patching up to do around the hole but that will all disappear under the layout someday anyway.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey Popeye,

yeah it shouldn't be physically possible because the system is a simple "create a vacuum and draw air in through trickle vents" so the grey box contains a large fan that vents air directly out through the wall and in doing so creates a constant vacuum in the three other ducts. The system runs 24/7 so there should be no opportunity for anything unwanted to make its way the "wrong way" up the ducts into the the living spaces.

The spray booth obviously has a filter to catch paint over spray. When I took the booth apart there appeared to be no contamination beyond the filter in the fan area so I'm pretty confident no actual paint pigments will even get into the ducting. 

I like being able to paint inside as I have full control over the environment, lighting, dust, temperature, humidity etc.

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use