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Author Previous Topic: The Town Topic Next Topic: Beginn of a german Railroad Time 1960
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Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 04/26/2016 :  09:53:40 AM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Removable 'cassette' system and stacked, interesting, certainly space saving. I like the idea of the angle aluminum on the cassettes, is it powered?


Edited by - Frank Palmer on 04/26/2016 09:54:32 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 5326 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 04/26/2016 :  11:00:41 AM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Removable 'cassette' system and stacked, interesting, certainly space saving. I like the idea of the angle aluminum on the cassettes, is it powered? >> Yes I believe powered although I don't know much about the power transmitting abilities of aluminum.

http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/23/2016 1:32:29 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 04/26/2016 :  2:37:34 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Kumar, here's a list of conductive metals. Next to copper aluminum is the next most popular house wiring. As you can see aluminum conducts better than nickel and much better than S/S. The Sundance Central Fn3 layout is all Al rail and my former outdoor railroad was all Al.




Edited by - Frank Palmer on 04/26/2016 2:38:46 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 5326 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 04/26/2016 :  2:47:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Next to copper aluminum is the next most popular house wiring. >> Wow, so close to copper, I had no idea. In that case I'll go 'full aluminum'. I'll probably construct the cassettes along these lines:





http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/23/2016 1:32:13 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 05/15/2016 :  1:15:39 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
This weekend I've been designing the cassette that is going to allow me to move trains from one layout to another ie The Depot to The Town and back.

I used SketchUp to design the basic cassette. It uses aluminum angle bars (4ft long) screwed down to 1/2 inch solid pine board. It has handles to help lift it and it has drawbridge handles at the ends to keep trains from rolling off while being moved.

Here's the basic design that I hope to build:


Here's a close up of one end and demonstrates how the drawbridge will work:


Now the challenge was to figure out how to join the cassette to the existing configuration (the dock). The dock was built to attach to a staging area. I wanted to reuse as much as possible but just add the necessary elements to allow the cassette to line up accurately with the layout.


After measuring all the dimensions I sketched up the dock first:


And then I floated the cassette into position so that I could work out how to support it:


I decided to add a cradle to the dock into which the cassette would sit and this would prevent any sideways movement.


To prevent lengthways movement and also to provide power to the tracks I added holes that would receive pins attached to the cassette. I might reverse this and have pins stick up from the cradle since I would prefer that the cassettes have a flat bottom surface.


And so finally here's the whole unit that I have to construct. The cassette would have additional support via a shelf bracket attached to the wall.



I should have the first of two cassettes built in the next couple of weeks at which point I'll show materials and tools used. Today I have to go and buy the aluminum bar and will start the project later today.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/23/2016 1:33:09 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

robchant
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 05/15/2016 :  8:41:56 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looks very good. My only question is do you have to spin this before moving it to the next level so the train is in the right direction? Or do you connect it to the opposite end?


Country: Canada | Posts: 1157 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 05/15/2016 :  11:11:25 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thanks Rob,

Either end of the cassettes will be able to connect to either end of the modules. The same docking rig will exist at all exit tracks on all the modules. It would be nice at some point to have an elevator and turn mechanism but right now space dictates a manual solution only. I'm still playing around with docking and power connection variations but the final result should be very similar to the current docking design.

I had to order the aluminum angle bar from Amazon since my local hardware store didn't have the right size so I'll start the construction next week.

Since getting a nice finish to the aluminum handles at the curved ends will be a bit of challenge I decided to send the 3D drawings of the handles to the 3D printing service Shapeways (http://www.shapeways.com/). The aluminum handles are $44 each (too much) so I opted for 'Strong & Flexible Plastic' which were only $3 each. I'm not sure they will be strong enough but I'm looking forward to seeing them and they have given me a chance to dip my toe into the world of 3D printing. If I decide that I would rather use aluminum I will either make them myself or go to my local metalworks and have them made them for me.



http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/23/2016 1:33:51 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

jbvb
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 05/16/2016 :  07:56:52 AM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Aluminum files very easily; I'd scribe the radius on a piece of flat strip, make 3 hacksaw cuts tangent to the curve and get out a coarse file. On 1" strip, I'd expect to be at the radius line and ready to sand smooth in less than 5 min. for each. Or you could clamp all 4 together and do them in one pass, maybe 10 min.



Country: USA | Posts: 5866 Go to Top of Page

railman28
Fireman



Posted - 05/16/2016 :  11:12:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Kumard,
I'm following with great interest as I'm developing staging for my layout. What would you estimate the cost of your cassettes to be? Would not be advisable to make the cradles on the layout adjustable in case of movement by the layout's track?


It's only make-believe

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Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 05/16/2016 :  11:53:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by jbvb

Aluminum files very easily; I'd scribe the radius on a piece of flat strip, make 3 hacksaw cuts tangent to the curve and get out a coarse file. On 1" strip, I'd expect to be at the radius line and ready to sand smooth in less than 5 min. for each. Or you could clamp all 4 together and do them in one pass, maybe 10 min.




Me too. Aluminum is very easy to work with and a wood dowel for the handle and you're done. I wouldn't trust the plastic handle to be strong enough.



Country: USA | Posts: 5326 Go to Top of Page

Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 05/16/2016 :  12:33:56 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Kumar,

My reaction is similar to Frank's. Add up the monetary value of what you will be carrying on that cassette and you might opt for being a little conservative and use aluminum rather than rely on the unknown strength of the plastic.

Mike


_______________________________________________________________________________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

Country: USA | Posts: 5187 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 05/16/2016 :  1:18:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
James >> Aluminum files very easily; I'd scribe the radius on a piece of flat strip, make 3 hacksaw cuts tangent to the curve and get out a coarse file. On 1" strip, I'd expect to be at the radius line and ready to sand smooth in less than 5 min. for each. Or you could clamp all 4 together and do them in one pass, maybe 10 min. >> Thanks James. I watched a few YouTube videos and working with aluminum seems well within my capabilities. I purchased a bunch of new tools to help me cut and shape metal - a bending brake, a press drill and table saw. I also have a mitre saw and jig saw. Buying tools is easy, storing them when not in use is more challenging so I only buy them when I need them. I still have to buy a tool to help me file down the ends of the handles. I'm not sure what that will be so recommendations are welcome. I'll post more about the tools when I've finished the project.

Bob Harris >> What would you estimate the cost of your cassettes to be? >> Bob the cost of the materials is minimal. The angle bars came to around $6 each. The rest of the items probably came to less than $5 an item.
Here's a list of materials. I'll post more about this when the project is done:

1. 2 angle bars - 4' X 3/4" X 1/6th" - needs to drilled with holes for screws, nuts and bolts
2. 1 pine board - 4' X 3.5" X 1/2" - it needs to be cut to the correct width
3. 1" dowel for the handles - it needs to be cut to the correct widths
4. 1" flat aluminum bar for the handles - 1/16th thick - I need to cut and shape the round ends to match the dowel. I may exchange this for thicker bar - it's a bit flimsy.
5. 1/2 inch wood for the cradle
6. Brass or copper materials for the electrics
7. Whatever screws, nut and bolts needed to attach it all together

Also: the drawbridges will have smaller dimensions and I will probably use 3/4 inch aluminum bar and dowels. I'll purchase these items today.

Here's what I have so far. I'm waiting for new angle bars because the ones you see in the picture are not quite the right dimensions.


Bob Harris >> Would it not be advisable to make the cradles on the layout adjustable in case of movement by the layout's track? >> Maybe. An accurate join at this point is crucial. The layout track is stuck down pretty well and I don't think it is going to move much. I'll know more about this issue once I start the project.

Frank Me too. Aluminum is very easy to work with and a wood dowel for the handle and you're done. I wouldn't trust the plastic handle to be strong enough. >> I would prefer to have them made from aluminum and it sounds like an easy material to work with. I'll have the Shapeways items this week or next week. I'll post an image of them when they arrive. I agree that they probably won't be strong enough and look forward to making the handle myself.

Mike >> Add up the monetary value of what you will be carrying on that cassette and you might opt for being a little conservative and use aluminum rather than rely on the unknown strength of the plastic. >> I'll probably go full aluminum and make the handles myself. Let's see how things turn out next week.

I'm waiting for the aluminum angle bars to arrive from Amazon. I'll start the project when they arrive. I may have to buy a couple more tools as well. I'll post more on the project once I've made progress.



http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/16/2016 5:02:23 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 05/22/2016 :  11:16:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote

Cassette Project


I've been working on project over the weekend trying to get the first of two cassettes built. Before I started I decided to redesign the power connection between the cassette and the cradle. I wanted a flat underneath surface for the cassette so that it can be easily laid down on a flat surface.

I decided to create power plates connected to screws and bolts that would get power to the two sides of the cassettes. Here are the SketchUp drawings that I created before starting:





Here's a quick view of the bolt connecting the nut to the plate. The head of the screw is sheared off and then the remaining screw shaft is soldered down onto the plate. The nut goes into the other end.


Anyhow now was time to get started. I had a bunch of wood and aluminum to cut and drill. I purchased a bunch of new tools to help me with the metal and woodwork. They included a table saw to cut the width of the plank down to size and also a press drill. I also purchased a bending brake and an angle grinder but have not yet found a use for them.

This the was the first time I've ever done any metal work. I was amazed at how easy it was. Both aluminum and wood cut very quickly, cleanly and easily. I was able to get very precise and clean cuts with my miter saw and table saw which was essential for this project.

Power tools:
1. The miter saw gave me clean precise cuts across both wood and aluminum.
2. The table saw allowed me to create the long wooden base for the cassette.
3. The press drill allowed me to drill holes in the wood and aluminum.



I bought a bench grinder (http://www.amazon.com/WEN-4276-6-Inch-Bench-Grinder/dp/B00LPFIPQ0) to help me create the curves and the ends of the handles. I didn't want to do it by hand and felt the the machine would give me a much nicer finish. It arrives this week.

I cut the aluminum and wood to length and then checked the dimensions and fitting with the layout:


And then started building the cradle:


Here's a loose test of the parts made so far - nothing will be screwed together until right at the end:


I decided to get started with the handles sooner than later. I cut them to exact dimensions in the miter saw and then used the press drill to make the holes for the nuts and bolts. The press drill went through the aluminum like butter.


This picture shows the cradle with the plates and the screws in place:


I made the parts for the remaining drawbridge handles and then called it a day. I am waiting for the bench grinder which I want to use to grind down the handle ends into curves. I'll then add the electrics to the cassette, drill all the necessary holes, screw everything together, and then fit the cradle to the layout. Hopefully it will all work as planned. More to come next week.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 05/23/2016 1:54:51 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 435 Go to Top of Page

jbvb
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 05/23/2016 :  07:06:50 AM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Following along. A bench grinder is a somewhat messy tool I think of for sharpening hard steel cutters, but experiment.

A 'one contact sits on the other' circuit may not be as reliable as you want. Sliding the cassette into the opening would help, but putting the contacts on the sides so they slide against each other as the cassette is lowered into the cradle would improve it also.



Country: USA | Posts: 5866 Go to Top of Page

George D
Moderator

Premium Member


Posted - 05/23/2016 :  07:57:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm just getting caught up on your thread, Kumard. I've read about this cassette design in British model railway magazines, but I've never seen a description on how they were constructed, or the thought process that goes into the project. I'm following this with interest.

George



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