Thursday, July 26, 2018

July Update

This month has again seen a very significant proportion of my time taken up with family matters.  Some hobby time was found and I worked on: Car Card Racks, Track Maintenance, A Fun Run, Ops Sessions, WiFi Fast Clock Master and High Capacity CD Units.

Car Card Racks

I finally put the racks up albeit not painted or every mounting screw but they could be used for the ops session on the 7th.



Loco LeMaistre

Stanvac / Flintston / Iron Hill




Troublesome Track

Last month I relaid this section of track so I installed the feeders and hooked up this month but did not realise I had crossed some wires.  This meant that the PSX feeding the section did its job and turned off the power.  This was discovered when we ran the first train on the Fun Run day, I could not fix it on the fly despite "chopping some wires", so that caused a few issues... 

It has been corrected and operates correctly now.

Fun Run 2nd July

I had a request to include some "fun run" sessions so people could run some of their equipment on the layout.  Barry, Chris, Des, Don, Rosslyn and Wayne brought equipment. Below are some pictures of the "foreign visitors"

Apart from the "Troublesome Track" we had a nice time.

Ops Session Saturday 7th

I was asked by Spacky & Jock (the 12" to the foot guys from Pt Augusta Loco Workshops) if I was prepared to schedule a couple of op sessions on a weekend so they could make the 3½ hour drive south and take part.  This was the first such session.

Below is the Trains sorted by Operator by Time

Below is Trains sorted by Time by Operator

I followed Wayne's lead of providing a switch list for each yard and local goods

Afterwards Spacky & Jock cooked a great BBQ which was devoured accompanied by beer and red wine.  We had such a great night they boys hung around until midnight chatting.

Me & Jock
The next session will be October 27th.

WiFi Fast Clock Master

I finally spent a few hours working on the base station for the Wi-Fi Clocks.

The 32 x 8 LED is the time display, the LCD monitors the Wi-Fi status of the four slaves and the push buttons are for the functions of Start/Pause, Time +, Time -, LED display brightness, Clock Speed and Reset.

The final commissioning and testing awaits...

High Capacity CD Units

I built another 7 CD Units for Rosslyn making a total of 8 units.  3 were previously delivered and the last 5 are shown below.

Ops Session at Rosslyn's

I turned up shakedown session at Rosslyn's and installed the first three High Capacity CD Units and they worked all but the two sets of twin Tenshodo solenoids that work in tandem.  So I have decided to build a Mega CD Unit for use of these two sets only.

I was really tired with all the family stuff happening so I retired after reinstating the old wiring for the second time...

I took one home and doubled the capacity to 4 x 4700µf 50V caps.

I have given them to Rosslyn for installation..

Ops Session at Wayne's

I was lucky enough to get to two sessions at Wayne's this month.

Wednesday 11th

Alan, Des, Don, Wayne and I had a great afternoon and the complete schedule was run with only a few errors.

Thursday 26th

Forgot the photos...  I worked with Peter J and we had a pleasant afternoon's run albeit busy at the start.

Barry, Chris, Des, Don, Peter J, Rosslyn, Wayne and I ran the schedule.

It was great to have a few hours away from the Family issues Kaye and I am currently experiencing.

In conclusion

I am looking forward to getting back to a position that is somewhat normal - hopefully this will occur towards the end of August.  Let's see where it all goes in the next few weeks....

Till the end of August.....


Saturday, June 30, 2018

June Update

This month has seen a very significant proportion of my time taken up with some work and family matters.  Some hobby time was found and I worked on: Track Maintenance, High Capacity CD Unit, WiFi Fast Clock Slaves and Control Panels.

Troublesome Track

Last month I ripped out the problem area and after some mdf was removed by chisel and an acceptable road bed was determined I sealed the area with paint prior to relaying the track.  The section functions well now.

High Capacity CD Unit

I built Rosslyn some CD Units thinking they would drive Peco solenoids.  When I turned up to help install them I discovered he was trying to throw Tenshodo solenoids which are much larger and require significantly more umph!

I normally use Rob Paisley's circuit with a 3300µf or 4700µf capacitor which easily throws 3 or 4 Peco solenoids simultaneously. 

I built a version with two 4700µf capacitors in parallel (9400µf) and that seems to work OK when tested on an old Tenshodo point motor I have from a previous layout.  I still need to get to Rosslyn's to install and test where she has two in working together at a cross over.

Control Panels

Following introduction of more realistic operating sessions my operators have been asking for local control panels at Jimtown and Adamsville instead of having to ask the controller/tower man to set the turnouts.  I have agreed to this and commenced building them.

They are made and pre-wired ready for installation

WiFi Fast Clocks

I have finished assembling the four slave units.

I have acquired a project box to mount all the base station components in.  I started the component measurement process to design the layout of the 8 x 32 LED time display, LCD showing staus of slaves and the control push buttons.

Project Box Width

Project Box Length

Push Buttons

LCD Width

LCD Length

8 x 32 LED display width

8 x 32 LED display length

Now for designing the layout and then work on the project box to ready it for the components.

Ops Sessions at Chris's & Wayne's

Due to the work and family issues I missed both sessions, hopefully I can avoid this in the future.

Till the end of July.....