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Rockin' it old school

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Rockin' it old school
Posted by Postwar Paul on Sunday, September 19, 2021 5:09 PM

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Sunday, September 19, 2021 5:40 PM

Paul, mice to hear from you.  Those rocks look great, and I bet they are lots easier to move than the real thing!  You should be able to make some nice view breaks with these.  - Eric

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Sunday, September 19, 2021 6:17 PM

Hi Eric!

 Yes, these articial stones are lighter

and Cheaper than the real things!

I was considering naming the largest one the " Frugalhorn".....

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Posted by York1 on Sunday, September 19, 2021 6:31 PM

Nice!

York1 John       

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Sunday, September 19, 2021 7:16 PM

Thanks! Really enjoying running these trains. I think I have just about everything I could want or need train wise, but thousands of fun little train projects, both indoors and out. I want to add some lights to an LGB caboose. And eventually I'll get back to working on this garden line again.

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, October 11, 2022 6:18 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

I must have filled up the other share with pictures, so I have added pictures to this share. Track laid and ballasted. Just washed down the dust, so I'll give it a test run tomorrow!

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Wednesday, October 12, 2022 4:20 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

More pictures. Tested the line today, everything tracked well, a success. Wanted to run more trains, but dark clouds stated coming in, and then a few thunderclaps. I've been caught in a downpour a few times, and it's no fun. So, packed everything up and went inside.

Of course, the sun came back out....

I want to make a control stand for the transformers that is covered on top, and open on the sides for ventilation. Another project on a very long list!

Paul

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Posted by Vintagesteamer on Saturday, October 15, 2022 5:01 PM

Been doing the same, as summer turns to fall and cool/colder weather moves in, I transition from my garden railway to my indoor layout in a smaller scale.  Now my live steamers in G get runs at shows on our groups portable layout.  But home time is spent working on and running my prewar(WWII)Lionel OO trains, along with a few other early brands in this now obscure scale otherwise known as American OO(does not run on HO track). 

I went with this obsure scale for a few reasons, one I love vintage trains from prior to the second world war, but not so much the tinplate ones.  I enjoy the turn toward scale realism that Lionel and others took in the mid 1930's.  While I would love to have one of their O gauge NYC Scale Hudsons(700e), the cost and huge curves those need do not fit my space at all.  But....Lionel had the answer for those in small spaces.  In 1938 they debuted their OO line of 1:76th scale trains on 3 rail track with a 27" diameter curve.  Now my home layout uses Gargraves track with a 42" diameter curve so that I can run Scale Craft passenger equipment.  My loop of original Lionel track has its own table top board to take to shows.  Mike

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Saturday, October 15, 2022 6:05 PM

Mike,

the vintage trains are fun! I personally have a weakness for hefty die cast steam engines. I came across, and was considering an HO American Flyer steamer. It was quite hefty, and appeared to have a smoke tube coming out the back of the cab, but no tender, no trailing truck.Just a little too much to take on. But yes, those vintage trains are fun!

  American 00 is quite rare, but can be good hunting!

Paul

cool train, by the way!

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, October 18, 2022 3:23 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

even more pictures:

StarTed adding planters. A lot of open area still. There will be a small table and chairs for relaxation......

Testing the system. This is a 3 train operation, using just 2 transformers. I run track power, and the trains just quietly run loops. The cog train runs automatically on a back and forth circuit, sharing the transformer for the main loop. 12.5 volts is optimal.

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Wednesday, October 19, 2022 3:06 AM

Looking good, Paul!  I had to move up to a 24 V laptop power pack to ensure reliable operation.  I suspect it is the humidity and corrosion.

 

Eric

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Wednesday, October 19, 2022 4:57 PM

Eric, the great outdoors! What I love about running G gauge trains outdoors is also what gives us challenges! Heat, humidity, corrosion, angry bees.... all these challenges, but I wouldn't have it any other way! And the experience can be completely different from one day to the next.Yes, sign me up! It's always something....

 My previous garden railroad at the old house started out on flat ground, but by the end of it's 12 year existence, tree roots had come under and lifted the track in a couple of places. Instant grades!

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, October 25, 2022 5:53 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

Enjoying operating everything on my new track. And learning the possibilities and limitations. My next project will probably be the control stand for the transformers: they don't like to be in the hot sun. I will build a cabinet big enough should I decide to add another transformer at some point. My idea is a cabinet up off the ground on short legs with a top like the school desks we had in Elementary School; it would be totally covered, but with hinges to swing open for access. This would protect from the sun, and a sudden downpour. There willbe handles on the sides to lift it up to put away. Also, there will be a cross connect to switch which transformer powers which track, and can be re configured as needed.

 The cog train works tirelessly, but I finally had my first derailment after 2& 1/2 years operation: a dead flower had fallen from the tree onto the track, and gotten sucked up into the wheels on one of the coaches. When the engine was shoving the cars uphill, and reached the first corner, the wheels lifted up just enough to derail the first car, which derailed the second car, and then the locomotive. Fortunately the engine landed on it's side in a soft pile of gravel and dead leaves. The roofs popped off on both cars, which were just snapped back on. No damage, luckily! All because of organic debris on the track! First derailment of an otherwise extremely reliable operation....

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Wednesday, October 26, 2022 2:37 AM

Swiss-Colorado-Lines
No damage, luckily!

 

Understatement of the century, there!

 

We actually hook up our transformers each time we run.  Leads run from the track and terminate in DC plugs like you'd use on a trailer.  These plug into similar plugs that run to our homemade throttles.  When we are done, we coil the leads up and hang them on broken fencing blades in the garden.  The throttles and their laptop power supplies get put in a bin and shoved to the back of the lanai.

 

Eric

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Wednesday, October 26, 2022 2:39 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

It's a Gold Spike Ceremony! Couldn't resist.....

 Eric, great tips on the control stand for the transformers. Can you post a picture of the plugs you are mentioning? I can look for them when I start buying materials.

Thanks!
Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Friday, October 28, 2022 7:03 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

So, the road testing continues! It's hard work, but somebody has to do it.... Everything bigger than an 0-4-0 loco has moved to the new loop. I consider this a smashing success, I can run longer trains more easily, with less stress on my engines. I am now running the cog train as the "RedTrain", and the steeplecab as the " Blue Train". They run happily on my original track work, although the crossing is warping and becoming problematic. Probably have to replace it soon. It looks just like the crossing I saw 3985 roll effortlessly across in Illinois....

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Monday, October 31, 2022 3:54 PM

Paul,

 

Sorry, I have been off line for a bit...Here is a link to the plugs I mentioned:  Hopkins 2 Flat Trailer Connector 12 in. - Ace Hardware .  I picked them up at an auto-parts store.  They have been outside in the tropics for years.

 

Somewhere in this forum I described how we  built our controllers.  One of the later issues of GR aslo did the same.  For  less than $50 each, these have worked perfectly delivering 24V to our not-so-clean rails!

 

Eric

 

P.S.  Loved the latest photos.  I always liked the little LGB steeple cab electric.  It's on my if-I-stumble-across-one list.  The OR&L considered electrifying part of its line, so its prototypical in spirit!

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, November 1, 2022 10:21 AM

Eric,

  thanks for the info on connectors, I'll need them when I build my transformer cabinet. A quick disconnect if there is a downpour.....that's exactly what I need! It's all coming together in my mind.

  The steeplecab is a great little engine! It loves R1 curves, and looks great doing it. If you happen to cross paths with one....

  I need to replace that 30 degree crossing. It's been around since 1997, and I've gotten my full usage out of it. 
 It's always something.....

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Wednesday, November 9, 2022 1:31 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

More pictures:

I remember when I first got the Spectrum Mogul in 2001. I was outside running this engine every Saturday and Sunday for about a year straight! Love the looks of this engine, still do. Now I have 2 of them. Mine are from the first production run, and have plastic gears. Occasionally, I have to service the gear box, but not too often. All the parts are still available, and I am very comfortable with the repair. All in all, a great engine, still love it! It looks quite elegant on my track!

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Friday, November 18, 2022 6:25 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

It's the Million Dollar Bash......

with an old loco, " the Ghost of Christmas Past", and a worn out, but salvaged chassis, I have an idea to make a 4-4-0 American. It will be battery powered, and pulling lightweight cars. Just for grins.....

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Sunday, November 20, 2022 11:50 AM

This should be interesting!  We thought of doing something similar with and ezTec Atlantic...

...but no one was ready to put something that a.) worked and b.) was providing fun to the saw!

 

Eric

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Sunday, November 20, 2022 3:40 PM

Eric,

  I wound up with 2 engines like the one in your picture. One has already been the Guinea Pig for much tinkering: it became a Halloween train, with an orange and black caboose with a cupola that pops open like a jack in the box, revealing a Frankenstein head. The servo didn't hold up too long in this duty. I tried powering the loco with a 9 volt battery, which worked fine, but didn't have the capacity to run very long. The original 6 C cells have more range. Important lesson! I have another set with this same engine, but much nicer. It is radio controlled, and I'll keep it as is. The lightweight cars can be pulled by my new kit bash. I'll use the same tender for both engines.

  With the holidays coming, time to work on this may get put on hold, however...

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Monday, November 21, 2022 10:09 PM

Postwar Paul

I have been banging away on the indoor layout, setting up a new American Flyer loop, and trying to make some headway on the scenery. Haven't worked on the Garden line much, although Trains run every single weekend ! My daughter gave me these artificial stones for my Birthday. Just what the Doctor ordered !

Paulhttps://rockinitoldschool.shutterfly.com/#%3aemid%3dsite_sitecreated%26cid%3dSHARE3SXXXX

 

So, I had some time to saw down the drive chassis. It has gone from a 6 coupled to a 4 coupled drive. I was able to cut out the plastic locomotive frame to accept the drive chassis. So far, so good. A little more filing and fitting, and a lot of testing. Starting to look like an American....

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Wednesday, November 23, 2022 10:41 PM

Pretty cool!  Are you going to keep the forward truck?  Or are you going to replace it with something more substantial?  The wheels looks sort of "O-Scale-ish."

 

In the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving!

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Thursday, November 24, 2022 9:50 AM

Hi Eric,

  as part of " Paul's engineering on the fly", the front truck needs to actually guide this engine into curves, and keep it centered over the track. The center drive wheels are " blind", that is without flanges. This is because the blind set of drivers has the longer crank pin , which is needed for the main rods. I have pictures of 4-4-0's back in the 1860's that have blind drivers on the center set, which means the lead truck needs to actually do it's job, instead of being just ornamental. It depends mostly on the wheel spacing if I use this truck, or a surplus Bachmann truck, this will be determined in testing. This engine is just for fun, however, and not intended to be a model.

 So, in a nutshell, I dunno.....

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving! 

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Saturday, November 26, 2022 6:08 PM

So, I have other things to do, but I can't seem to put this project down.....

more pictures are in the share.

I spent considerable amount of time, and I just about have this ready for track testing. I will use the original 3 position switch, but will try to run it on 6 volts instead of 9. Much more sedate and leisurely pace. I originally wanted to repaint, maybe Rio Grande tri color, but may just keep it as a seasonal Christmas train. We'll see...

Track testing next step.

Paul

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Posted by PVT Kanaka on Tuesday, November 29, 2022 1:12 AM

Paul,

 

That is coming along really nicely.  The front truck looks a lot less balky with the little engine all reassembled.  For what my opinion is worth regarding paint, it might be a neat experiment to see how far from "toy" to "model" with a new paint job.  We were shocked to see what a can of matte black did to our busted LGB battery operated m2075-s.  Time permitting, we may undertake a more robuse experiment in 2023 with an assortment of parts begging to become a locomotive.

 

Eric

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, November 29, 2022 9:45 AM

Thanks, Eric! In truth, the front truck came from one of the 4-4-2 engines, and it is a drop in fit. Couldn't be any easier, no modifications needed Except eliminating the side to side play. This Christmas engine has been staring at me for years, and I've wanted to find an old LGB engine to power it, but used the salvaged drive instead. Paint works miracles! But I might just keep this as a Christmas engine.

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Tuesday, November 29, 2022 6:12 PM

More pictures in the share:

Track testing today. I started her up and she derailed almost immediately. I added a small lead weight to the lead truck just above the first set of wheels. This remedied the problem, and she tracks beautifully! Operating with a manual three position switch; forward, stop, or reverse. No speed control. It turns out 9 volts is perfect for loping along sedately.

 I wanted to build this engine because I am thin on the 4-4-0 wheel arrangement. I only have a sample in N scale and HO, nothing in G. My thinking now is to keep this engine in Christmas livery , at least until she fades and painting is mandatory. What I've realized is the need for a quick to set up/ tear down demonstration train to show guests our backyard, people with less excitement for trains than I have. I can give a quick spiel, and we can go back inside and eat. These battery powered trains are easy, and can be useful in this purpose.

 You can see a couple of my Halloween cars from years past. This gives me a seasonal demo train.....

Paul

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Posted by Swiss-Colorado-Lines on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 6:15 PM

So, I've got all the connections soldered, headlight mounted and connected, and all the body mounting screws in. This is a really smooth running train! I deem this project completed!

Paul

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