Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July Update

July has been once again a slow month for modeling I was sick for a couple of weeks.  Once again absolutely no time in the train room but I did get to work on my upper level signal control stuff. I made a prototype for use in a mimic panel. I attended another running session at Wayne's with the Monday crew.  I made some CD units for Chris's layout and I accepted Lionel & Jim's A Modeler's Life Podcast Challenge.

Top Level Signal Controls

Last month I outlined that there are two sides to this control board, the 3 Light Signal Modules (3LSM) and the "Control side which includes the Input isolation modules, Direction sensing (DBDS), Passing siding (SSCM) & Junction (JCTM) modules.  Work to date has still been on the 3 Light Signal Module side.

I reviewed the concept design and decided to put some signals back that I previously decided to remove and of course this mean fitted additional 3LSM's to control them.  I have settled on 45 modules.   It is also apparent that it will be impossible to see some signals from the adjacent aisle due to structures, viewing angle and some terrain. In these locations I will mount a mimic panel on the fascia.

3 Light Signal Modules Board

I documented the mapping for the standard yellow inputs and have hard wired them and where there are multiple terminations each wire has been isolated using signal diodes.  What has become apparent is the "Yellow" indication of the lower signal (medium speed) in many cases is dependent on a number of variables and will need microprocessor evaluation & control. This may be able to be achieved through spare outputs of the proposed JCTM's or it may require separate JCTM's - I will assess this in due course.

The final testing remains.

Signal Mimic Panels

Thought has been given to providing the remote indication of the signal conditions for a siding entry exit I have some dual target signals. If I am to use 3mm LEDS then placing them side by side 3 x 4.5mm (base diameter) equaling 13.5mm with a 5 mm gap then another 13.5mm for the second target means a minimum of 32mm (a bit over 1 1/4 inches) is required per dual head signal.

I want to reduce this so the first option I have explored is using fiber optics.  I found a YouTube video showing what can be done.  I had previously seen an advertisement in MRH Magazine and purchased a fiber optic pack.

The mock up below shows how space can be saved using 1.0mm fiber optics so I built a prototype.
Top - Fiber Optic    Bottom 3mm LEDs

I placed the 1.0mm fibers into some heat shrink tube (not shrunk) and then into some evergreen tube.  I filled the end of the tube with Krystal Klear with the idea being it would form a lens which would shine with the colour of the corresponding LED.

1.0mm fiber optic epoxied into 3mm LEDs

Unfortunately the pilot showed that the lens did not fill with the "operating colour" it just showed the end of the fiber optic filament.  I will have to try another approach.

The Monday Crew has third running sessions at Wayne's

On Thursday 23 July we had our second monthly Ops sessions at Wayne's layout we were again the "guinea pigs" for part of his "session 2".  The usual initial run gremlin's occurred in a few locations. The clock had to be stopped a few times as we learn features of the layout.

The Supervisor

We held a debrief over coffee/tea/wine and again the consensus was another very enjoyable session with still "lots to learn".

Thanks Wayne for a great afternoon and I look forward to the next running session.

CD Units for Chris's

I built 3 units for Chris based on Rob Paisley's Current Blocking Switch Machine Power Supply.

A Modeler's Life Podcast Challenge

Following comments on the viewer mail 20 show re Costco in Australia here is a photo of the Adelaide, South Australia's Costco - A water bag trip 1 1/4 hrs each way from my home.

And Yes they have hot dogs to!

Thanks again to those that continue to help me achieve my ambitions and hello once again to all my followers!

Till the end of August 2015.


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