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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 09/20/2020 : 10:47:38 PM
After working on my layout for 15 years, I'm thinking a tearing it down and starting over. I've started to realize the track plan's limitations and I think I can do better.

15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
robert goslin Posted - 01/02/2021 : 02:37:30 AM
You're still making excellent progress Glen.
Must be nice to actually now have a train running around. Hopefully you don't have any trouble with your track laying or arrangement.

The river should be a nice feature also.
Overall it's looking great.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 01/01/2021 : 8:00:27 PM
Thanks for the advice Kyle. I'm going to keep the trackwork the way it is for now. If it gives me any trouble I'll consider revamping it.

I spent the last week prepping and wiring in the DCC. I first needed to lay down my two main bus lines, that also required that I rough in the river:

I made another benchwork stringer to serve as the basic outline for the river, then I used some 1/2 plywood screwed to the bottom of the benchwork for the basic river bottom. When that was done I was able to route the buss wires under the riverbed.
I'll be adding insulation foam to contour and raise the river bottom. When I figure out the river depth, I'll router out the plywood stringers to that height. (I hope that makes sense.)

The thing about wiring is there isn't much to see. I just ran my two bus lines around the layout and attached feeders to them using the suitcase connectors. These made hookup very easy. I made a couple mistakes, creating some shorts as I went but I tested each section as I hooked them up so it was fairly straightforward to catch. I did get a short when I accidently impaled a feeder with my staple gun but I caught it right away and it was an easy fix. I've been running a proto1000 F-3 around the layout for the past couple hours to see if it can find any bugs.

Another thing I found by raising the layout an extra 6-8 inches is the extra space I now have under the layout. Now that the wiring is done I started to clean up and organize things. These draws are all my scenery supplies. I hope to have the rest of it cleaned up soon so I can start work on the Portable Station kit.
kyle creel Posted - 01/01/2021 : 12:14:29 AM
Hi Glen, I model in on30 but very much enjoy every scale. This is my first time to chime in and I must say that I really like your project.. I have hand laid 90% of the track on my layout and love to see others doing it also, it looks so cool. I do, however, see a potential problem in the flex track as it is laid out so far in one particular location. In the 4th photo from the bottom (just because it's the closest one) I see a compound 's' curve that may give you some issues with longer cars and locos. The track comes out of a long curve and and then bends to the right into a left handed turnout (which is opposite from the direction of the curve) and creates an 's' curve with no straight track to compensate for the change. I believe in the old rule of thumb; 'one car length appx. 6" of straight track in the middle of an 's' curve. You have a simple solution at hand though, remove the left handed turnout and replace it with a right handed one and this will give you the smoother tracking for all your locos and rolling stock.. Please understand that I'm not trying to "BUTT IN". I have however had this same track configuration when I was in HO, and numerous derails or "funky looking' car movements over the offending section led me to seek suggestions, and the one that worked is the one I mentioned. Just an observation and thought. Nice layout. If you're ever in the On30 Line neighborhood check out my BCRR topic; comments, cheers and jeers always welcome. (beer bottles not withstanding)

Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/27/2020 : 12:28:27 AM
Thanks for the feedback. I still have about 100 or so of the railcraft spikes. I bought a package of 1000 micro engineering spikes but I haven't figured out how to drive the spike and avoid the head of the spike from hitting the top of the rail.
I did check out the railcraft spikes from the web site above but I've never heard of that site and I'm not comfortable ordering from them. I'll probably be watching ebay to see if I can find them.
I'm about to start wiring in my dcc system this coming week so I can start running trains.
robert goslin Posted - 12/26/2020 : 4:23:29 PM
Great trackwork Glen. You certainly are moving along a an excellent pace. The track laying looks really smooth.

I did find this online, if those spikes are RailCraft.
jbvb Posted - 12/26/2020 : 12:55:28 PM
You've probably just run out of RailCraft spikes. I don't think they've been made in at least 25 years. I've read that they were somehow a predecessor of M-E's 'small' spikes, but that possibly for efficiency in manufacturing, M-E didn't duplicate the small RailCraft head. About a decade ago, a HUB member's heirs sold some of his stuff at our show and I was able to buy 2-3 bags. I still have a couple dozen, saving them for tight locations where the M-E heads don't fit well.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/26/2020 : 12:46:26 PM
Happy boxing day to everyone. I finished the trackwork in the small town yard:

It took about a week of evenings to complete the 12 feet of track, spiking every 5th tie. Before I laid the rail down I ran my sander over the tops of the ties to level them out a bit. I also like the aged and greyed look of them after.

I did spike the first four ties for each siding. I plan to cut the rail here to isolate them to eliminate potential shorts feeding back through the turnouts.

In the process of laying all the track I've almost run out of my good track spikes and I don't know where to get them from. For that matter I also don't even know who makes them. They are about 5/16" long with a fairly small head. I bought some micro engineering spikes, thinking that they were the same but the M.E. spikes have much larger heads on them. anyone know whoose these are?
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/21/2020 : 11:54:06 PM
Thanks Mike. I've built a few other kits from Interaction. My favorite that I've built so far was the Tobacco shop kit that comes with a complete interior and lighting kit. I ended up building a second one for a friend.
Michael Hohn Posted - 12/20/2020 : 09:44:37 AM

Your track is looking good.

The two kits look really nice. I especially like the machine works. I was not familiar with Inter Action Hobbies and so I took a peak at their website. They have some good stuff.

Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/20/2020 : 12:05:28 AM
Thanks Tyson and George.
I started laying some rail over the last few nights. I first had to figure out hove to deal with a transition from a Code 100 Turnout to code 83/70 Rail. This is what I came up with:

I used code 100 rail joiners and inserted the code 83 rail into it, then wedged a toothpick under the rail to push it up to the level of the code 100 rail. When that was lined up I soldered it in place and it worked fine. It sure beats buying a Walthers transition for 16$ Cnd.

Then I started drilling and spiking. I used some 9/32" long spikes. I pre-drilled with a #25 drill bit. I don't know how other modelers hand-lay but this method seems to work best for me. At this rate I can do about a foot and a half an hour. Did I mention I'm not in a big hurry?

By this afternoon I completed the first siding and a couple inches on the second. I'm spiking every 5th tie except at the beginning I'm spiking the first four since I'll be cutting the rail there to insolate the siding.

I also checked my work with both an NMRA gauge and running a car over the completed trackwork.

I also got an early Christmas present in the mail yesterday:

I got two Kits from Interaction Hobbies. The first is a CPR portable station. It also contains the optional detail kit:

This will be the station for the smaller town where I'm laying track right now. The detail kit comes with the interior details and an LED lighting kit.

I also got this:

This is one of Interaction's latest kits. I hope to build this and place it in the industrial area of my larger city.
Right now my plan is to finish the smaller town's yard, finish wiring the existing track to get some trains running and then build the CPR station kit.
George D Posted - 12/14/2020 : 09:21:35 AM
Looking good, Glen. I'm going to be painting a backdrop in the near future and I like the look of the pale blue you're using.

Tyson Rayles Posted - 12/14/2020 : 09:05:41 AM
Nice progress Glen!
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/14/2020 : 01:35:36 AM
I'm sorry I should have mentioned that I'm wiring this for dcc. I won't be adding any extra power switches.
jbvb Posted - 12/13/2020 : 9:53:16 PM
What you're doing will allow you to install SPST electrical switches to turn off power to each yard track individually. With that track configuration you don't need to separately wire each turnout; even if they're power-routing, frog-to-points connections won't make shorts.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 12/13/2020 : 8:56:43 PM
I started a bit of trackwork today. Yesterday I was helping my local club take down a fellow member's layout who passed away a few months ago. I did get some scenery supplies and some other items but what will really help me now is:

The layout that we are taking apart was all Micro Engineering code 83 track. We were able to salvage the track in the areas that were not ballasted but the ballast and glue kept the track from coming out in one piece everywhere else. I figured I may as well recycle the rail and use it to hand-lay the yards and other sidings. I spent about an hour this morning with a soldering gun, removing the remains of feeder wires and generally cleaning up the track.

I then drew out my sidings and laid down the ties.

Now I'm almost ready to start spiking some rails down but first I have to think of wiring. I'm using all Peco insul-frog turnouts and 'm trying to figure out insulating tracks and adding feeder wires in a way that will make sure I don't cause shorts.

Now I've already added insulators to the turnout from the main and will be adding feeder wires to the short piece of track between it and the first turnout in the yard. I'm also insulating each siding and adding feeders to that. Is that enough or should I further isolate each turnout from the others? I'm probably over thinking this (as usual)

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