2017_02_26 I thought it was Sunday?

2017_02_26 You too? well we were wrong it was Alday!!

Al visited again today, as we gradually get all the track circuits up and running. We almost finished Wodonga Coal Siding. We probably could have, but we found another short, an old friend, almost :(
And we ran out of supplies. Seems I accidentally bough home two packets of female joiners instead of the 200 male spades I wanted. Back to Jaycar tomorrow. Mind you we connected over 60 pairs of droppers. That is 120 connectors and 120 spades not including the duds of which their was a few.

The short, was indeed, an electrofrog point with a live frog, and the frog splice joins were left in place. We had a few of these during the wiring upgrade.

I do not allow mechanical electrical joins. All soldered and independently connected. every point blade, point and track section has a dropper. A lot of work but hopefully will give me sterling service, something I have not experienced at Club level till we started doing this at Hobson's Bay in the 90's
Thank  you Al, I could not have done it without you ;)
Ok as it was all wiring today ,only a couple of pictures...

The right hand point and the diamond on the BG did not get finished. Temp wiring removed. Just have to remember how to wire the diamond! Wait a minute I just wasted all that time on the Kilmore East diamond 😓

The last point we wired up today shorted it all out. Here are the tags that we forgot to remove 3 years ago. Obviously this was never connected in till today and we got a dead short.

SG train departs main line , Coal siding for Albury? Well it might once we install Albury 🚂



2017_02_25 Back in a tick.....

2017_02_25  Ok sorry for the long break. Family and disease got in the way.

First of all my elderly Dad went into Hospital and a visit was in order to Melbourne. Whilst there he was sent home and Dad called a family conference to ensure everybody knew his intentions and he wanted to talk about his will.  He seems to be doing all right at this time.

Second thing was about me. After driving down to Melbourne and coming home, I became unwell, and lost interest slept a lot, and could not work in the shed longer than an hour. My patience wore thin, and finally went to Doctor Wednesday last, where I found my Diabetes was out of control.
Had a few good days since then with upgraded medication, am feeling a lot better.

In fact Al came over Friday for an ALDay and I lasted pretty well. Day before I slept the day away.

We laid track, fixed track, and almost finished the wiring under Coal Siding (only 25 droppers to go :O
We also cut away the roadbed behind the trestle bridge to allow for the low back drops that hide the track behind leading to branch station Honeysuckle.
We also played around with Decoder Pro and Loksound Programmer which appears to be running fine on the new laptop. Took 5 weeks to get it working, bloody Windows 10 stuffs everything!

Lets show the pictures.......

Starting with Sunday, helping Graeme Schulz test out his learned skills :D

Added some foam here. Love these hot wires ;) for cutting. Looking at the floor.

Water based liquid nails fixed it very firmly

We decided to cover it with some scrap white board to help with the road, will create a steep bank towards where road needs to go and hopefully some buildings behind that.

Adding to cutting?

Storing the new Southern Rail cement works in the quarry siding. Its impressive!

SG and BG track fitted along short wall towards Honeysuckle.

The junction at Honeysuckle

The other side showing the BG and SG connection from other side. Also shows why we had to remove the trestle bridge and open up the gap behind where I need to place a low backdrop to hide the track behind the bridge.

And after all this time the ACER now shows Decoder Pro and ESU Programmer. The Fix?
Well I was trying to save space on C Drive. Acer loaded Win10 on a 28gig SSD and so win 10 used 13 gig of it. I added a SD card with 64 gig on it, and loaded JMRI on this card to save my C Drive.
The fix? load it on C Drive, and all works.  28 gig and Windows 10? Come on Acer you got to be kidding!
Rod Young


2017_02_12 Some important gains!

2017_02_12  So things are looking a lot brighter in the wiring department.

I bit the bullet and removed a fair bit of wiring and replaced it with about 25% new wiring that does it even better.  Fitted some NCE circuit breakers and got rid of several wiring faults.

In fact I have a much better understanding as to what went wrong! First thing was using temporary wiring, just to get things running...9 years on and I am ripping it out because...

The second thing was that I added new wiring to the spaghetti as I added on to the railway, and my memory let me down, as I forgot where the feeds were, and duplicated some of them. As I rearranged districts recently, the lost feeds were causing shorts between districts and other faults.

Well as of Saturday ,I am now officially ahead of all this, and not far from restoring / buildihg up, the integrity of the electrical system. Thank goodness for that.

A parcel arrived from GB. Very quick, about 8 days posted to delivered

The parcel had received a bit of softening around the edges

However it was all ok inside!

Pretty little thing? No wonder I model Victorian Ha Ha much more macho Ha Ha.

I needed a small engine for Albury services, and this one came up on RailPage. It was the right price possibly because it came from Great Britain, and the seller was factoring in exchange rates at time of purchase. But I am happy with this little jewel. Now to fit a WoW to it.

Ok  some layout modifications?

See the high level (under spirit level)
This is the SG and BG track leaving Wodonga Station towards the Wodonga SG loop. Their is quite a hill out of House Creek to the start of the SG loop, and smaller engines were struggling up this hill.

So I took about 2 inches out of the grade and dropped this area back to level, which gives the engine a chance to recover before continuing the grade around the corner where a  >1.5% grade rises to Wanganella

Now the bit under Dremel has dropped leaving NMRA+ clearance above track where Ramp  Meter is sitting.The ramp meter accurately gives DCC voltage available 14.7v and amps being supplied  0.01 indicated with one Loksound B Class idling.

Also the overhead track is insecure. So a support was placed under the pliers and another underneath the arrow head drawn, in front of the power board. The board has been lowered also because the new drywall will cover the bricks here.

The Nostradamus effect?
Tomorrow my buffer stops will arrive!! Lets try to foresee what we will see (then) shall we?

20 of for $100 and just a few days to get here ;) tomorrow for sure!
Click on the picture and it should be enlarged for you Patrick's telephone number is there if you should want to contact him.



2017_02_09 Alday returns 27C in shed. not too bad

2017_02_09 Still chasing faults, but working on wiring up the coal siding.

Not much to photograph today. Al and I worked on the SG yard, Albury end of coal siding. We found one nasty fault that just would not fix itself on a points ladder. Finally at end time, we decided the point was faulty. 5 points in ladder, 4 work perfectly and one shorts out one way, does not other way. Juicer fires and yet loco still shorts out.
We could do a lot more if these stupid little problems did not keep stopping us in our tracks. A new point is ready to install, and must fix the problem.

I have 13.9 Volts on DCC bus. Still cannot connect in the horseshoe curve up into Wodonga Station. But I will simply isolate the section and join it into Coal Siding. If short is found, I at least know where to look. I can then connect up all the droppers. If it holds voltage, on to next section.
With 13.9v at the start of station limits I can start to connect in parts of Wodonga station till I find the short.

Having two of us tied down to this "search and rescue" mission seems extravagant, however it works well, and we have plenty of time to chat, and that's what its all about, isn't it? This old fella spent most of day laying on a trolley under the layout, and Al for once got a "sitting job" at least for some of the time.  We are accomplishing two things here. Isolating sections of layout and making permanent wiring, where we find temporary connections. And their are lots of them.
 Thanks Al :)


2017_02_03 Little jobs and variety :)

2017_02_03 Todayy (and yesterday) we added a couple of corners, started another DCC sound conversion, and filled the display cabinet, whilst looking for an elusive 830 Class that needs a replacement speaker.

I think they look pretty good. Graeme came and one measured whilst the other held it in place. A few more to go, but I need to get a lot done behind these panels before I can fit any more.



2017_02_01 Surprise parcel

2017_02_01  Nice cool day, but I am not in the mood much for crawling around on the floor...

But fortunately, one of the Railways suppliers delivered a long standing order :)
Our passengers are going to be much impressed!

Going to have to do something about the way this camera operates. Its not a cheap one! However flash is too vicios and without flash the auto focus jumps one position and blurs as I press the button. In focus out of focus taking picture and back in focus directly after??? why?? The fully focus ones are in macro.

2017_01_31 thats one down 11 to go... time flying still? ;)

2017_01_31  Pretty hot, for a week in the shed, so went searching for a reason and found the top was missing off my water cooler air conditioning plant.  29C without and 22 C today with it securely screwed back down. Thank goodness for that.

So apart from some small jobs in wiring department, I did manage to play around with my computer and try and get Decoder Pro working on it.
As well I stripped down my two new Alco 48's (830) and started to fit sound inside them.

some pictures?

A spontaneous purchase ;)  At Liverpool last year . I bought this one and another SAR 830. They dropped the price to $180 each, almost half would the opposition will charge, by the time theirs make it to market. The wow decoders were $145. A lot cheaper than loksound. If I can get the whistle right, will be very pleased.

Quick search of the internet to find out the pitfalls and problems. Google was not my friend. However DCC downunder and  Main North DCC did help a lot.

This time I did read parts of the WOW installation leaflet, but missed the best bit...DUH!!

 Underneath the decoder you can almost read that the diagram is but a guide. ignore positioning of wires, use colours and descriptions when wiring up.
By the way this is the largest decoder that will fit the long end hood. But you do need to hard wire it.

Ok here we are ready to start.
I removed the couplers as per the directions, however the body was firmly stuck on. So not wishing to break it, I searched internet to no avail.
(Later my friend Gerry Hopkins Mmr told me that he does it this way....
Rod, remove the coupler box as shown - then use two tooth picks between the frame and the back of the buffer on each side - the frame will move from the body - just a little. Do the same at the other end and the body lifts off. Next remove the fitted speaker and see how far you can throw it!)

But I came up with another equally as good solution, by examining the model and finding out a few problems on the way.

 First one being the bogie side frames. These are very loosely attached, and you can knock them loose just re railing the Loco. They easily go back on, just remember to use a small screw driver, or back side of a scalpel, to pull the sanding pipes out from under the side frame when you clip them back on.

 .Now how did I get the body off? Not so hard actually, my  viewing of the model showed me a way to release the body in the coupler pocket area.

 A small flat blade through the cow catcher and into the screw hole was enough t edge the body up cleanly, if you did a bit each end and provided you had removed the coupler chain.

 Ok coupler chain was already loose.

As Gerry said...horrible speaker, but before you chuck it, use a razor saw and cut away the lighting board support after noting exactly where it sat on the speaker box.

Removed the speaker and cut wires

Then I cut down the 14 x 25 WoW 2 watt speaker box, to fit exactly where the original box sat.
I had to carve out the inside of the box, as each corner has a speaker support to stop speaker from falling in. I thought I needed to cut more of the box away, however the wow speaker was already almost sitting on the bottom, and I did not want to make it rattle. If my calculations were correct, the body would fit on, as long as I did not bunch up the wires over the top of them. (I lined them up side by side and that was ok)

Having marked the position of the lighting board, I attached it with  the glue in the yellow hornby bottle. Not sure what it is, but it sticks everything with a 2 minute built in delay.
Reinforced it with a bit of scrap square plastic.

 Glued box in place as well as speaker in box. Speaker wires out the top
Then simply taped the wires side by side over the top of the box, as I connected all the wiring up.
Test running it, I found headlights were reversed, so apparently the short end is not the front. Easy job to flick the yellow and white wires across

ok so lets give it an (almost) static test run.

So almost finished. Using notch up and down to create noise and throttle position 1 to move it just a little :) Now don't you just love this thing :D 

Cheers Rod