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STRATTON AND GILLETTE Project 2: Benchwork Testing and Experimentation

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  • Member since
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 06, 2019 7:44 AM

Day 17, Post 1:

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On Monday 31/DEC/2018 I went to two local hobby shops looking for Midwest Cork and a Tortoise switch machine. Both did not have them in stock.

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On the good side, both of these stores, Metro Trains in Fort Myers, and Gulf Coast Model Railroading in Sarasota reported that they had great Christmas seasons, and even sold tons of products after Christmas. That is why they were out of stock.

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On Monday I ordered the needed items from Model Train Stuff.

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The package has not arrived yet, I was expecting it yesterday. This changes the plans a little bit, because I was intending to play with Homasote and cork roadbed today.

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I will see what I can get done... changing plans... moving forward.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 06, 2019 4:40 PM

Day 17, Post 2:

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Well, I did manage to get all the required train car painting done today to clear the workbench for the power tools.

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This is not what I wanted to do today, I wanted to lay trackwork, but you just can't work without supplies.

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I am spending the next week in my "dorm room", so no progress will take place on this project for five days. So sad. Vacation is over and I need to get back to work.

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My wife snuck up on me and took this awful candid picture today. I certainly am not a photogenic sort.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Thursday, January 10, 2019 11:45 AM

My package from Model Train Stuff arrived today. My wife sent me a picture.

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I will be back to work on this project this weekend!

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All systems go... full steam ahead. I am quite excited.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

  • Member since
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  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, January 12, 2019 10:05 AM

Day 18, Post 1:

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I am going to post day count only counting working days on this project, so this is day 18 instead of day 23. I spent 5 days in my "dorm room" in Tampa.

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I am starting today with an experiment with homasote, which a new material for me.

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These are the pieces to my trackwork sandwich, base, homasote, cork roadbed, and track.

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I found these three packs of knife blades for my jig saw on a popular auction web site. These are most certainly "New Old Stock" items. I wonder how long these have been laying around.

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Wow, these blades are amazing and perfect for cutting the homasote! Thanks for the advice. They were absolutely worth finding. There was no mess at all.

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I am not sure if my spikes are long enough. They are 3/8" long, but once going through the tie and the cork, there is not much left in the homasote.

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I drilled #66 holes in the ties, and drove in the spikes with a pair of needle nose pliers. This is a picture of me driving my first spike EVER into homasote!

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This experiement went well. Now onto some real construction.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Saturday, January 12, 2019 10:25 AM

SeeYou190
Wow, these blades are amazing and perfect for cutting the homasote! Thanks for the advice. They were absolutely worth finding. There was no mess at all.

So, those are the knive type blades that Dave talked about?  No teeth, just a knive blade?

I remember using a circular saw when I cut mine, back in th 90's, outside of course, and the "fluffy" saw mess it made.  At first I thought, cool, I can use this as foliage material!  I tried to dye it, but the resin, or whatever they use in the process of making Homosote, wouldn't allow the fibers too accept any die, so that experiment ended in the trash.

Mike.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, January 12, 2019 12:02 PM

mbinsewi
So, those are the knive type blades that Dave talked about? No teeth, just a knive blade?

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Actually it was Henry "Big Daddy" that suggested the knife blade.

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I was never able to find the blades Dave described.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Saturday, January 12, 2019 12:58 PM

Yep, your right, I had to scroll back.  Nice smooth cut, anyway.

Mike.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, January 12, 2019 1:15 PM

Well,

I stopped using cork about 35 years ago in favor of homasote. 

Like this guy sells:

https://cascaderailsupply.com/

To get the extra height like you are doing, I use 3/8" plywood, like this:

I shoot the plywood and roadbed down with a little glue and a brad nailer, and I glue the track down with adheasive caulk. 

With another 1,000 feet of track to install soon, I'm not predrilling any spike holes....

Sheldon

 

    

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, January 12, 2019 1:47 PM

GAK! The thread got moved.

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After three weeks... dang.

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I hope the people following it, and judging by the image hits on Imgur, there were a lot of them, can still find it.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, January 12, 2019 1:51 PM

SeeYou190

GAK! The thread got moved.

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After three weeks... dang.

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I hope the people following it, and judging by the image hits on Imgur, there were a lot of them, can still find it.

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-Kevin

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What's not to find, it is still on my active discussion list? 

Yes, those who have not posted will have a harder time......

Seems the moderators have been busy with all sorts of stuff recently, I guess being a high roller failed the politically correct test, so I dare not post in the recent "Present your Treasures" thread........

Sheldon

    

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Posted by BATMAN on Saturday, January 12, 2019 2:18 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
I dare not post in the recent "Present your Treasures" thread........

I was going to post a pic of the wife and kids but thought better of it.

A Russian find a wife/ date a girl website posted a photo of an acquaintance's 17-year-old Daughter on their meet a girl from Russia site. It was just a photo that had been put on Facebook about a year ago. These guys mined it for their sleazy website.

Enjoying the thread Kevin.

Brent

It's not the age honey, it's the mileage.

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Posted by hon30critter on Saturday, January 12, 2019 3:51 PM

SeeYou190
I was never able to find the blades Dave described.

I'll grab the model # off the blades at the club and post it.

Dave

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Posted by BATMAN on Saturday, January 12, 2019 3:57 PM

mbinsewi
So, those are the knive type blades that Dave talked about?  No teeth, just a knive blade? I remember using a circular saw when I cut mine, back in th 90's, outside of course, and the "fluffy" saw mess it made.

A friend of mine has a knife like blade for his circular saw. He used it to cut rubber stall mats. It would probably work on Homasote as well.

Brent

It's not the age honey, it's the mileage.

https://www.youtube.com/user/BATTRAIN1

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, January 12, 2019 5:02 PM

Day 18, Post 2:

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Well, I had quite a surprise just now. I opened the Atlast Deck Girder and Atlas Girder bridge kits that I ordered from MB Klein. 

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The last time I used an Ho scale Altas 9 inch bridge I was probably in middle School. I remember them being simple solid bottom bridges with snap-track on the decks. That is what I was expecting.

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These bridges are pretty darned nice! So much better than I expected. These have nice open decks, real bridge ties, guard rails, and really impressive detail for less than $10.00 each!

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I will certaiinly be using these on the real layout!

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, January 12, 2019 5:28 PM

That is impressive, I did not know they had upgraded them. Good to know.

Sheldon

    

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, January 12, 2019 8:01 PM

Day 18, Post 3:

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Ran into a big problem. I accidentally mounted all the risers on the lower level 1/2 inch too high. I checked clearance under the girder bridge with a mock up, and I think I am OK, but it is closer than I wanted.

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But, I have a problem in the tunnel where the two track cross. And... this would have been a problem even without the 1/2" mistake... I am really doing bad today. I forgot about the 3/4" of Homasote and roadbed when I checked it before.

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A trip to the big box Home Depot and I found this large steel splice plate. I think it is the answer to the problem.

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I bent the outside 1/2" up at a right angle for strength. This is now one tough bridge plate.

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I need to make another riser now because I will need to slice out the plywood for clearance. I had to get a little creative to make it work where it needed to go into.

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I mounted it, and it fit and worked!

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 I cut out the plywood and homasote over the lower track. Then I removed some of the homasote with a coarse rasp to even out the surface with the bridge plate.

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Six screws will hold the bridge plate in place.

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The clearance underneath is now good, but I still wish I had that extra half of an inch.

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And I verified that the cork roadbed will be smooth without any wierd vertical transitions on the bridge plate... All OK!

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Crisis averted. I hope I have no more problems tomorrow.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by hon30critter on Saturday, January 12, 2019 10:56 PM

Ooops!Smile, Wink & Grin

Glad you found an easy fix.

Dave

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Posted by schief on Sunday, January 13, 2019 1:05 AM

I am relatively new here (at least posting anyways, I've lurked for awhile) and just wanted to say this is an excellent thread. I am not at the building stage, just dreaming, but threads like this, I can learn so much from.  Watching you correct an issue like you just did above is valuable and makes this whole building thing seem less intimidating. Thanks!

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 13, 2019 8:08 AM

Day 19, Post 1:

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I started today by test fitting the new control panel inserts into the layout front fascia panel.

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The smaller one is perfect. It printed from Microsoft Power Point just fine.

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I learned another lesson (I forgot how much I have learned already) on the larger panel. I need to make my maximum panel width 10 inches, not 11. There is no way to get Power Point to print all the way to the edge on 8 1/2 by 11 paper. I had to make a JPG of the panel image, make it a full page photo, and print it with Microsoft Photo Editor with no margins. It does not look anywhere near as good as the smaller one.

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This is why we sould always experiment with a new design.

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I am going to run to Home Depot to find something to use as a backing panel for these. On the real layout I will use sheet aluminum, I have used it before with perfect results, but for this temporary layout experiment I want something less expensive and easier to work with.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by carl425 on Sunday, January 13, 2019 9:17 AM

SeeYou190
I need to make my maximum panel width 10 inches, not 11. There is no way to get Power Point to print all the way to the edge on 8 1/2 by 11 paper.

Have you tried 8 1/2 x 14 paper?

I have the right to remain silent.  By posting here I have given up that right and accept that anything I say can and will be used as evidence to critique me.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 13, 2019 2:23 PM

carl425
Have you tried 8 1/2 x 14 paper?

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Printing directly from Power Point is weird on odd sized paper.

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On the real layout it will easy just to keep the openings no more than 10 inches wide.

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If I do need a wider panel I will need to figue out how to use ledger or legal sized paper.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

  • Member since
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  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 13, 2019 4:50 PM

Day 19, Post 2:

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Even though I have purchased the wrong solder, I decided to open up my new Weller soldering station and give it a go.

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I should have been patient and waited for the 63/37 solder to arrive, but I had a new toy and I wanted to play with it.

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I tried my best to solder the track joints, but even with the soldering iron up to 750 degrees, it was hard to get the solder to flow.

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In the close up, you can see how it just sort of blurbed there.

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The joints are plenty strong, but not as pretty as I would have wanted.

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Oh well. At least I got some practice.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, January 13, 2019 8:00 PM

Day 19, Post 3:

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I made it to Home Depot before they closed. I decided to use plexiglass for the backing board behind the control panels.

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The sheet I needed was only about five dollars, that is OK.

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I was going to get drilling tonight, but my wife wants to watch a movie, so I am off to the couch.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by rrinker on Monday, January 14, 2019 6:48 AM

 I used two thinner pieces of plexisglass, with the printed part sandwiched in between so it wouldn't get grubby.

I drew it with Visio, not Powerpoint, but same idea.

                                --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Monday, January 14, 2019 7:46 AM

Randy,

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I have also used a piece of plexiglass on the front of control panels I built before.

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I am hoping that since I laminated the wiring diagrams with 5 mil plastic, that will keep the grubbiness off. This will also make them easier to assemble.

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If it does not work, I will go back to plexiglass on the front as well.

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Thank you for the comment.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

  • Member since
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Monday, January 14, 2019 6:35 PM

Day 19, Post 1:

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There will only be one post a day this week. I am working from home, but I still need to get my assigned work done. Not a full day available to play with the trains. However, I am glad not to be travelling up North again. You guys can keep that cold.

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I fabricated the brackets to hold the control panels into the layout fascia board. These are made from scraps of the PVC fascia board. Each one is 1 1/4" by 2". I inserted a 1/4"-20 threaded rod into each one and drilled two countersunk mounting holes.

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I glued these to the PVC fascia board with PVC cement. There are two wood screws in each one, but they are just there to hold it together until the cement cures.

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I modified an angle bracket that will hold the panel in place. The wing nut will hold everything together.

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It turned out just like I hoped it would... this was a good day, but a short one for progress.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by hon30critter on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 4:57 AM

hon30critter
SeeYou190 I was never able to find the blades Dave described. I'll grab the model # off the blades at the club and post it. Dave

Here are the blades that we used to cut both the Homasote and the 3/4" plywood at our club with minimal mess:

https://www.boschtools.com/us/en/boschtools-ocs/t-shank-jig-saw-blades-for-wood-t101bf-29427-p/

Dave

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 5:56 AM

Dave, Thank you, the link was very helpful.

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I just ordered a pack and will try them out when they arrive.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

  • Member since
    January, 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
  • 3,568 posts
Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 5:59 AM

schief
threads like this, I can learn so much from. Watching you correct an issue like you just did above is valuable and makes this whole building thing seem less intimidating. Thanks!

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Thank you for the kind comment. Apparently your posts are still delayed by the moderators, but that will end very soon.

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I have been model railroading and building layouts for 40 years, but I still get new ideas and ambitions, and learn as I go sometimes.

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This forum has been a very valuable resource for me also. Our hosts do a great job keeping it cleaned up and on track. I wish it was around decades ago.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

  • Member since
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  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 6:08 PM

Day 20, Post 1:

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Well, another thing went wrong.

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I have an old used Shinohara #6 turnout that I intended to use on this project. It is not really good enough for the final layout. Well, I checked it with a caliper, and it is a code 70 trackage piece. All the rest of my track is code 83.

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Well... here comes the opportunity to show how I join two different codes of trackage to one another. I have described this method before, but never posted pictures.

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I usually use 0.010" by 0.060" brass shims strip, but I could not find any today. I know it is around here somewhere, or maybe it is in my "dorm room" up in Tampa.

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Fortunately, I have some smaller, not as wide, stock on hand that is the correct thickness.

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I cut off two small pieces of the strip and bend them into tight U shaped pieces like this.

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Then I insert them into the rail joiners that are installed on the thicker (in this case code 83) trackage piece.

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Then I put the pieces together and solder them.

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When completed, the joint is secure, the tops are the rail head are even, and the brass strips can usually be pulled out with a good pair of needle nose pliers.

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There you have it. Not too bad to execute.

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-Kevin

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Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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