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05 February 2017

Perfect companion for model railway building.


My apologies to all for the long hiatus from posting and now having found my MoJo I'm back into completing MRWAIN model railway.
During my break I discovered a new toy and have been putting in a lot of time learning all the tricks, the must dos, the must not dos of this device.
The 3D printer can be and is frustrating at times but hey, that's the way they are and if you blow a build, accept it and start all over again.
The use of 3D printers in model railways is only limited to your imagination and the ability to learn and use 3D drafting software.
I have tried many 3D packages but have found the saviour to my sanity....Google's Sketchup.
Sketchup is so easy to learn and use and for people like me just wanting to build unique items for MRWAIN it is perfect, can't praise it enough, and the best part it's free for the non pro version.
Design your item, and in this case it was the container gantry crane, save it as a STL file and import it to the slicer program and build.
I did an investigation on the Web, not a thorough one but long and hard enough to convince me that HO scale gantry cranes appear to be as scarce as rocking horse poo.
So, I took the challenge on, designed my own HO scale crane and printed it.....that's 3D talk for build
Been building bridges and tried my hand at laying cobble stones also but will leave that for the next post.

Have uploaded a few photos so enjoy.
 



Just a quick one, notice the brown fuel containers in the photos; they were made using the 3D printer and the 40 foot container slung under the crane was also made using the printer.
No doubt 3D printing is the future.

 
Note

Blog sites are really good but for me they have limitations on the content you can present and how it can be presented and for this reason I have started development on a web site unsurprisingly named.......www.mrwainrailway.com.
I will still support the Blog with postings but will gradually move across to the website as development proceeds.
As you may or may not be aware, design and development of a good and well laid out web site can and does take quite awhile.

Jim  
  


22 February 2015

Race against time

Since the last post I have been busy, very busy as I have a dead line to meet.
I live in Hervey Bay Qld and a few of us a while back got together and formed the Hervey Bay Model Railway Interest Group, not a club as we don't want the politics, hassles and the Government oversee of monies that evidently follows the creation of a club.
Each month members, and we now have nearly 20 of the group meet at a nominated members house and talk/look/operate trains.
I'm down for August and opened my big mouth and suggested I would have train(s) running under computer control. I can't retract my comment for fear of losing face so it's full speed ahead.
Below are a number of photos showing progress.

                                                   
                                                                    Now you see it!!


                                                                   Now you don't!!
I made this section of brick wall removable to allow access to an extra long tunnel just in case.


Looking down the main street of the town.
You will notice the Ornate tram poles temporary in-place along with the telegraph poles.
Not only will trains run but trams will join them on MRWAIN.
The footpath (side walk) the young lady is standing on is genuine concrete, yes, the real thing, not plastic or styrene.
The buildings are yet to be painted and currently have no roofs because I can't afford time wise to bog down on time consuming projects for the reason stated above so a lot of scenes are in different states of construction so remember this when viewing the photos.


To the right of the main street we have two tunnels, left for the dual track tramway and the right for the branch line.


This is the other end of the tunnels shown in the photo above this one.
The thickness of the divider between the two scenes is only one inch so I have placed both portals, this one and the one at the other end at an angle so that you are unable to look into the tunnel and see someone checking you out on the other side. All you see is tunnel walls.


This is the right hand side of the scene in the above photo.
Remember, the dual track on the left is tramway, the dual main is on the right disappearing into it's own portal.



Another view of the tram/train tunnels showing relationship with the town scene.
Forget the white picket fence, don't like it. I sat it there to see what it looked like and its going most likely replaced with a post and wire fence.


MRWAIN is small, so have included the "staging or fiddle " area as a working goods yard with the double main going right through the middle.
Extreme left of photo are the two main tracks visible coming to a suicidal end of the bench work.
This is where my bridge will be built to cover the walk through area.
I must say this, I have never painted in my life so my effort in painting the back drops even surprised me.


Front on view of the town. Decided to do something a little different and place a tunnel at the end of the side street which will be duplicated on the other side of the partition where my other town will reside.
That's the reason for the tramway, connects both towns together via a light rail network.


Left hand side of the town with tramway portal on the right and the dual main portal on the left with the double stack checking the height of the entrance.
Bottom right shows the branch line that will terminate at the MRWAIN goods depot shown in the next photo.


Don't panic, there will be a safety barrier running the full length of the via duct to stop employees from committing suicide.
That little yellow thingy is a "Track Mobile", cute, love it, just had to have...DCC ready to go.


Run trams and you have to have overhead wiring, so here it is.
It's not conductive as both trams will operate from the track, mind you one of the trams can be switched so that you can power from the pole but give me a break please, I have enough to do now.
This stuff is fantastic, can be used for fences, cabling between electricity poles etc.

I will be using it to simulate the overhead wiring for the trams with the relevant poles in place naturally.
Below are the telegraph poles I will be using throughout the layout and they are "prewired".
I have two pet hates, first is the use of signals that don't work, and the second is power poles without wire.



One last thing....I would like to make mention of a very good friend of mine who lives in Canberra and is a tram freak.
He kindly made the Ornate poles running the full length of main street and did a superb job.
If only I had half his talent I would be over the moon.

Check out his Blog.....http://trevs-tramway.blogspot.com.au/



03 December 2014

Work Continues

Just a few photos to indicate the progress of MRWAIN, slow, but we are at least moving forwards.





I will throw this in only because I feel my cloud making skills have finally been discovered.



The wharf scene is coming together really well. The two square holes in the background will be tunnels and a small tramway will share them along with trains.


                                                                 Now you see it


                                                                 Now you don't



Located below the signal is the cavity where the Tortoise machine resides along with the ribbon cable needed to connect all signals to the many SE8C signal decoders (Digitrax) located through-out the layout.


24 September 2014

Work starts on the Trestle



I love trestle bridges and I love brick work so it's only natural that both will be a focal point when it comes to MRWAIN.
The above image depicts how my imagination can take over sometimes when it comes to designing and building a scene. In the real world the railway would probably never have built a structure like the above for various reasons, cost, overly complex or simply not needed but I believe in modellers rights.
I know you have already picked up on the fact that the two brick piers supporting the bents are not in place on the opposite side of the arch and that's because I haven't done them yet.


The yellow flexible strap for want of a better name and there is one but I can't remember it has been in regular use on the railway. Perfect for achieving natural curves when laying track and perfect for getting my natural curve for the trestle. I have laid it level between the two brick pillars and attach the bents via rubber bands to it.
I'm building the bridge as I go, just like in the real world, no building it up side down like many do.
At both ends of the trestle there will be timber bridges spanning the gaps between the brick pillars and mother earth. One will be an arch and the other a deck truss.
The truss bridge on the right is a hand made brass unit bought from BLMA in America.


Same scene viewed from a different angle.






The left hand column of this bent was unable to make it to the ground because of a rock so I removed a small section and rested the column on a small brick pillar...told you I like brick work.






Full length view with two bents in place.
Work will start on building more bents as soon as the blasted jig can be found...the old story, placed it in a safe place and you know the rest, can't find it.
Until next time, bye.




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

18 April 2014

A couple more pics






This photo shows a better view of the brick retainer wall of the overpass.
The old wharf has hundreds of planks and each laid by yours truly, an excellent result in the end and am very pleased with it. I set out to achieve a wharf looking around 100 years old plus and it worked, very happy.



I wanted the train rails to blend in with the wharf and was pleasantly surprised with the end result.
At the end of the day my goal was to achieve a realistically looking old well used wharf and it worked out, very happy.


A little different from scenery, MRWAIN will have three power districts, each with its own DB150 booster.
The DCS100 will operate as a command station only.
Loconet will be divided into two separate networks, ThrottleNet and BoosterNet, and neither the two shall touch. All ThrottleNet cabling will terminate at the DCS100 command station and the boosters as shown in the photo will only connect between themselves with BoosterNet.


Not quite a tramway convert yet!!!


I never thought it would happen but trams will run on MRWAIN very shortly.
The CEO "Tramcar Trev" of the Lanyon Valley Steam and Electric Tramway http://trevs-tramway.blogspot.com.au/ will be asked formally if a branch line, not sure if that's proper tramway talk can exist between his tramway and my railway, located Canberra and Hervey Bay respectively.

I will accept his invaluable and learned advice regards this connection and if approved the tramway will be named the "Lanyon Valley Steam and Electric Tramway Extension".
The recognition of his tramway will be just reward for kindly making me the ornate tram poles shown in the above photo.




 Now, just to show I haven't been slacking in my endeavours to build MRWAIN I will post a few photos.



This is part of the branch line overpass constructed using individual balsa blocks, hundreds of them and yet to be painted.
If you look closely you will see a searchlight signal, just one of many I will have to make.
As I have said, MRWAIN will be computer controlled and that means signals, automated turnouts, the works, nothing less.


In this photo the partially built suspension bridge in the middle at the far end can be seen.
It has a wagon sitting on it.
The left side of the overpass as it runs down past the wharf can be seen completed and painted with Woodland Scenics concrete paint.

28 January 2014


Ok, since my last post Nov 24th showing a completed partition and not much more, there has been a lot of work completed and I mean a lot.
I participate in a model railway interest group located in Hervey Bay and every month we take it in turns to meet at a nominated members place and I draw the straw for April fools day, 1st of April.
That meant I had to get my act together and have something to show them otherwise they would have sat around like a stale bottle of .....
Head down, bum up and I have just about completed the frame structure, control desk/work bench along with the installation of the many many LEDS that will light MRWAIN.

Above is a view looking from the entrance doorway at the work/control desk which is a nice piece of work if I do say so. This work area sits at the end of the peninsular for no reason other than that's the only available space I have.
The blacken area at the left rear of the photo will be a focal scene that will stand out when entering the room, water-fall scene (Barron Falls) with a large curved trestle bridge spanning the gap.
Have already made a number of bents but many more to go.

Tomorrow I will finish the backdrops and that will be the wood working part of the railway finished, next will be track laying, not a lot initially, just enough to interface with Traincontroller so that I will have a small section under computer control to show the guys when they come around.
There won't be any signals working at this stage as time is against me, miracles I can perform immediately, impossibilities take a little longer.


Above shows the "roof" of the layout with the LEDs imbedded in the foam and the ribbon strip LEDs glued to the inside of the valance. I certainly don't lack light when these things are turned on.


Another section of the layout with the control/work bench just to the right out of sight.
Just in front of the truss bridge is the turntable, bought from www.cmrtrain.com with a PTC Model 3 controller supporting up to 99 selectable tracks with over 14,000 indexing positions.
More about this little beauty later.