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Version 5 of The CB&Q in Wyoming

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  • Member since
    July 2006
  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 11,714 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Monday, July 13, 2020 1:12 AM

Pruitt
I ordered several packs of joiners, but it will be a week to ten days before they arrive. One of the few downsides to living in boondocks USA - I have to order almost everything I need for the layout. No local hobby shop to visit. I sure miss Sattler's in Westmont right now!

Patience Mark, patience!

Personally I think I could give up the convenience of a local hobby shop for the wilds of Wyoming any day! Dianne and I have dreams of moving to a nice place on the water in cottage country. Alas, we will have to win the lottery first!GrumpySighSmile, Wink & GrinLaugh

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, July 19, 2020 2:20 PM

19 July 2020

Rail joiners have still not arrived.

The last few days I spent repowering the entire engine facility, including all the radial tracks off the turntable. Speaking of the turntable, when I got it fired up, I found that all the stops I programmed in back in New Jersey in 2018 were still in memory! I didn't have to do any reprogramming. I zeroed it out, and it was ready to go!

Even though two of the classification tracks are still not spliced back together, I put my rolling stock back into the yard:

A friend bought a hundred semi-scale wheelsets (.088 wheel tread width) some time ago, and discovered they didn't work on his Atlas switches. The frog point gap is too large or something. So he loaned me a couple cars' worth, and I installed them to try them out on my Fast Tracks turnouts.

They work just fine! So we're trading his semi-scale wheelsets for my standard (.110 tread width) Kadee wheelsets. The new wheelsets fit perfectly in my sprung Kadee truck frames. You can see a pile of the new wheelsets in front of the reefers in the photos above.

I've begun swapping out the wheelsets. Here's a comparison of the semi-scale wheels (car on the left) with the standard Kadee wheels. Once the blackening on the wheels have worn off, those thinner treads are going to look great!

 

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, July 26, 2020 11:14 AM

26 July 2020

Progress on the layout this past week was pretty minimal. I replaced the wheelsets on 13 cars with the semi-scale ones and worked out how to mount the newly received light panels in the train room (they're the same brand as the others I have, but they've been redesigned and the back is totally different now).

Most importantly, the rail joiners arrived and I've finished reconnecting the yard tracks in Casper!

Obviously I still need to replace the removed ties and weather the track.

I also reconnected the runaround track, so aside from a couple of ground throws that got cranky during the move, the yard is fully operational again.

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 19,384 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Sunday, July 26, 2020 1:45 PM

Mark, I am going to be interested to see how you fill in those gaps in the ties where the rail joiners are connected. When I slip ties under those areas, I shave off the spikes and they fit it up sort of snug and look fine to the naked eye. But, when I film the trains running over those spots with my Mobius portable camera, you can tell the difference because those slip-in ties do not fit completely snug.

Rich

Alton Junction

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Sunday, July 26, 2020 7:23 PM

I've always done the same thing you do, Rich. Since photography isn't the main reason for me being a model railroader, I'll just live with the visibility in photographs.

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
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Posted by richhotrain on Sunday, July 26, 2020 8:31 PM

Pruitt

I've always done the same thing you do, Rich. Since photography isn't the main reason for me being a model railroader, I'll just live with the visibility in photographs. 

Not to worry, Mark. Everything will look good in photographs. It is the mini camera videos shot from a piece of rolling stock running down the rails that shows up every little flaw.

Rich

Alton Junction

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Friday, July 31, 2020 9:44 AM

31 July 2020

I finally got my workbench set up! Now I have no excuse not to make progress on the layout.

I added several industries to Casper (labeled in red), taking advantage of space freed up by the removal of the mainline behind the town:

I cleared most of the clutter off Casper (usual problem with horiontal surfaces collecting stuff). Behind the yard was the beginnings of the Frannie / Orin interchange yard I'd brought from the previous layout. I hadn't found anyplace to store it, so it wound up on the Casper tables. Then I had an epiphany, and there it will stay until I'm ready to install it across the room from Casper:

And finally Casper yard is fully functional again! To celebrate, I made up the first train in Casper on the new layout. I made a video of it:

  • Member since
    July 2006
  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 11,714 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Friday, July 31, 2020 2:12 PM

Hi Mark,

Great video! One of the things my new layout lacks is a yard. However, down the road I hope to be able to build a separate visible staging yard to address that issue.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
    August 2011
  • From: A Comfy Cave, New Zealand
  • 4,218 posts
Posted by "JaBear" on Saturday, August 1, 2020 1:05 AM
Yahoo!!! Looking Good!! 
However, Mark, what’s the reasoning behind the yard rule limiting the number of cars in a cut to the number of drivers on the switcher?
 
Cheers, the curious Bear.Smile

"One difference between pessimists and optimists is that while pessimists are more often right, optimists have far more fun."

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Saturday, August 1, 2020 10:16 AM

Thanks Dave! Be sure to share your staging yard build with us here.

JaBear, Thanks for the compliment.

Regarding the yard rule about cut length - it goes back to an MR editorial written by John Page in the 1950's about "scale powering" a model railroad.

Almost all of my locomotives would be able to haul my longest train, 20 cars counting the caboose, over my entire layout at scale speeds (except maybe the 0-6-0's, the Doodlebugs and the small ten-wheeler). My 0-8-0's could certainly toss that length of cars around the flat yard in Casper no problem. Probably the 0-6-0's would come close to that as well, since there are no grades to contend with. 

I arbitrarily came up with these rules:

  • Yard switchers can handle as many freight cars as they have drivers
  • Road locomotives can handle two times the number of freight cars as they have drivers.

So my 2-10-2 can haul 20 cars. The 2-8-2's can haul 16 cars. The ten-wheeler can haul ten (adjustment of minus two cars because it's a small locomotive for its class).

So in theory, the yard switchers will make up a train they could not move as a single block. Actually they could, but this is make-believe. 

This is a gross simplification of real life in the steam era, ignoring most of the actual variables involved, but it serves my purposes. It forces one to pick motive power based on theoretical tonnage, and can affect train length based on available power. If my layout was designed for longer trains, I'd make adjustments to the rules.

Sorry for the long answer.

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Vancouver Island, BC
  • 22,150 posts
Posted by selector on Saturday, August 1, 2020 12:00 PM

Mark, I think those are sensible 'guidelines' for people who want to craft a satisfying model train experience.  We both know about the steep grades we sometimes have to accept to get it all to work and come together if it's a loop of some description.  While a real 2-10-2 might be able to handle twice as many cars as drivers on grades up to about 1.5% in the real world, our layouts are likely to make it have to work on 3% grades, which makes your rule a good self-check for assumptions about crossed fingers coming through when the rails are first powered.  And I like your thinking about cuts on ladders, especially if, as I'm just in the process of building, it has to be stub-ended ladders taking up all of about 4-6' when the diagonal lead is figured.  Your yard seems to be somewhat longer, but my entire yard module is ten feet long, plus I squeezed out another 18" at the stub ends.  Once that long Micro Engineering #5 ladder system makes up the branches off to the various ladder tracks, there ain't much left to play with.  Thank God for double-slips, too.

  • Member since
    August 2011
  • From: A Comfy Cave, New Zealand
  • 4,218 posts
Posted by "JaBear" on Saturday, August 1, 2020 2:52 PM

Pruitt
Sorry for the long answer.

No need to be sorry Mark.
 
Your answer and Selectors follow up make great sense and is a practical solution for model railroaders wishing to take in account the limitations of their layout i.e. lack of distance, excessive grades etc. It is a solution that I will incorperate when I actually build my own layout
 
Besides your answer, while comprehensive, was easily comprehended by the Bears brain cell, so thank you.
Cheers, the Bear.Smile

"One difference between pessimists and optimists is that while pessimists are more often right, optimists have far more fun."

  • Member since
    July 2006
  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 11,714 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, August 2, 2020 12:51 AM

Pruitt
Dave! Be sure to share your staging yard build with us here.

I think I'd better get the main layout running before starting any more projects!Smile, Wink & GrinLaughLaugh

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: Wyoming, where men are men, and sheep are nervous!
  • 2,433 posts
Posted by Pruitt on Monday, August 3, 2020 10:28 AM

Thanks, Selector. I kinda pulled those rules out of thin air after a bit of thought, but I think they'll do. If not, I'll simply change them when I start operations.

My shortest classification track is about 6 1/2 feet long, with the longest being about 11 feet.

3 August 2020

I just posted my latest video update to YouTube:

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