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Frank Palmer

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  3:44:36 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
More to come.

Country: USA | Posts: 6134

Frank Palmer

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  3:49:39 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I’ve taken a detour once again. The members of the “Center” have decided to build an O-Scale switching layout. Well one of the members wanted to go this route and Dave and I have decided to lend our assistance.

With “Robochant” Rob’s help we came up with a track plan. The layout will consist of three 6’ modules 3’ wide. We purchased poplar from our neighborhood wood shop to make the frames out of. The legs will be “X” framed 2” x 2” pine secured with 1/4" x 20 bolts and “T” nuts. The layout will be mostly permanent but on the outside chance we want to take it to a show the legs will be removable.

Rob did a design in his Layout Planning thread and I liked this one with a little modification.

Rob took my musings and created this “workable” version using Fast Tracks #5 turnouts.

I then uploaded Rob’s version into AutoCAD and traced the centerlines into a drawing. Richard, one of our members, printed the design so we can overlay the print on the modules.

We ordered a full Fast Tracks goodie bag of tools. Turnout template, point/frog tool, stockaid tool, PCB ties, wood ties, solder, spikes and a PCB tie cutter tool. We are all in.

Fast Tracks sells “Quick Sticks” which are his version of plywood ties all connected for easy construction. But since we went with wood ties I made 2 tools of my own along with Dave’s help on the laser.

One is a Tie Cutter. Simply lay the ties into the jig, tape the cover on and run it through my Proxxon table saw. Nice and quick all 30 wood ties cut to the proper length.

I also drew a Tie Spacer. Lay the cut wood ties into the spacer, mark the location of the non-moveable rails, apply Pliobond adhesive to both the wood ties and the turnout and press the Fast Tracks turnout into place.

Now all I have to do is finish the 14 turnouts. I built the first one step by step watching the videos and doing that step and so on.
Now I’m going into Liberty Ship mode. I’ve built all the frog points, filed all the stock rails, filed all the point rails and bent all the guard rails. Next is rapid assembly. Yeah right, at least I can just move from one step to the next without having to build each part along the assembly line.

Thank you Henry Ford.


Edited by - Frank Palmer on 02/21/2018 3:53:29 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 6134 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:21:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This will be well worth watching.

Country: USA | Posts: 24350 Go to Top of Page

Michael Hohn

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:22:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote

Fine looking turnout, although I only count eleven on the trackplan. I guess I’m missing something.

Your Henry Ford approach is going to save a lot of time.


Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. James Baldwin

Country: USA | Posts: 7242 Go to Top of Page

Frank Palmer

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:27:49 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
OMG it's Rick. Good to hear from you again. You must be a railroad baron by now.

Mike, there's actually 12 on the plan but we added 2 more connecting the SE leg and the SW leg. Adding another by pass.


Country: USA | Posts: 6134 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:29:10 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Turnout looks great! (but wish I had thought of using "Robochant" ... I like it!)

Edited by - robchant on 02/21/2018 5:37:53 PM

Country: Canada | Posts: 1212 Go to Top of Page

David Clark

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:31:26 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

That's incredible. I am looking forward to see this progress. At this rate, I might not want to go to sleep for fear of missing something.

Country: Canada | Posts: 1243 Go to Top of Page

Crew Chief

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:31:51 PM  Show Profile  Visit ocalicreek's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Lovely jigs!

What locale is the layout set in? I like a good waterfront plan, and this one looks interesting.


My Train Blog: http://ocalicreek.blogspot.com/

Country: USA | Posts: 684 Go to Top of Page

Tyson Rayles

Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  5:49:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This layout should be fun Frank. Had a great time at the Sundance Center by the way. I had a few questions and as soon as I get back home I'll send you a pm.

Country: USA | Posts: 13438 Go to Top of Page

Frank Palmer

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  7:24:15 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Oops, sorry Rob. Sounds good to me. Who’s the new kid on the block?

Dave, oh you can count on me to jump into something else in a month or so.

Galen, I wish I knew what the local was going to be. For sure there’s going to be a waterfront and boats and sea gulls and stuff if I have anything to do with it. Maybe if Jim Hopes ever shows up here he’ll explain it. Dave and I are only the non-paid hired help.

Mike, it was nice to finally meet you. Ask away.


Country: USA | Posts: 6134 Go to Top of Page

Carl B

Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  7:59:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This is great. I accept total responsibility for this thread.

There now, don't you feel a little better Frank? High five's and back slaps are on the way....

Sharing this experience with the rest of us is just the ticket.
And you got to show off another sweet use of Dave's laser.

Country: USA | Posts: 4154 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 02/21/2018 :  9:33:07 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Frank, I am watching to see how it all turns out.



Country: USA | Posts: 6444 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  10:43:44 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Let's see the 'Z' scale version next Frank!


Take the red pill

Country: USA | Posts: 6183 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 02/21/2018 :  11:49:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow that's really cool Frank. Going to be a great thread.

Maybe you should go into making turnouts for everyone!!


"And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." A. Lincoln

Country: USA | Posts: 13226 Go to Top of Page

Tyson Rayles

Premium Member

Posted - 02/22/2018 :  08:29:04 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by BurleyJim

Let's see the 'Z' scale version next Frank!


I can't get him to work in the Normal scale and you want him to do Z?

Country: USA | Posts: 13438 Go to Top of Page

Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/22/2018 :  09:10:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I like the assembly line approach to building switches. And doing it that way, you get more proficient with each step as you make more of the part. Maybe somehow mark the earlier efforts in case there are operating problems after installation and you can figure out where the lemon is.

Country: USA | Posts: 110 Go to Top of Page
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