Fitting a Turntable?

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Fitting a Turntable?

Postby Buelligan » Sat Apr 27, 2019 11:34 pm

Hi all, sorry if this is in the wrong section, but I wasn't sure if it should go in the Hornby, design, planning or construction section.

I bought a turntable a couple of weeks ago, its the Hornby R070, the tracks that connect to it are on a slight incline, which isn't a problem for little tank engines, but I find the larger engines are temperamental to get them on and off the table into the sidings. When driving a larger loco onto the table, if it's tender drive it struggles to get over the incline and often needs a gentle push, if loco driven it gets on ok, except sometimes the front bogies lift off the rails completely and derail. The incline is moulded into the outer ring where the tracks clip onto the unit. Is there a way I can level this out? Would it be possible to build up under the tracks that come off the turntable, and just use 1 of the locating clips to hold it on? Cutting out the board and sinking the turntable into it isn't an option at the moment. Or are there special sections of track I need to buy to connect to the turntable then join normal track sections to it.

My son love using it, not seen him swap engines around so much before, he just loves using the turn table, and for a 4 year old, he's doing well with the controls, remembering to keep the point open, and flick the switch over to power the turntable, then back to drive a loco etc

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Re: Fitting a Turntable?

Postby GeraldH » Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:56 am

Due to the change in gradient where the access track meets the turntable deck there is a slight vertical kink. This can be minimised by ensuring that the turntable is firmly attached to the baseboard and supporting the access tracks so that they don't sink when a loco is on them. On page 15 of my layout thread you can see my Hornby turntable. I screwed the turntable to the baseboard using the holes under the access tracks and I supported the access tracks with scenery - cardboard offcuts and plaster bandage as I recall.

Hornby tender drive locos might still have a problem, as the centre tender wheels are not usually driven and don't pickup power. When these centre wheels go over the kink, they lift the powered tender wheels up slightly causing the locos to stall. If you still have this problem, one option might be to remove the centre wheels on the tenders; or replace the tender drive locos with loco driven ones :( . Sometimes you can make adjustments to the centre wheels so that they can lift up slightly, but this is not always possible and you could potentially damage the drive arrangement.
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Re: Fitting a Turntable?

Postby mahoganydog » Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:50 pm

These turntables date to the seventies and have a few design flaws that Hornby haven't bothered to fix as you have found out. My advice is to sink it into the baseboard so all the entry tracks are level. This isn't a new idea, some have done it though it isn't easy to do and could get messy.

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Re: Fitting a Turntable?

Postby Bigmet » Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:16 am

How permanent is the rest of the layout? If you can put down a layer or two of Bristol board or similar to lift the surrounding tracks up to match the rail height of the turntable, then the entry tracks can be rearranged level. This does bring other advantages, surface wiring can 'disappear' and go under tracks with appropriate slots cut in the board.

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Re: Fitting a Turntable?

Postby Buelligan » Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:53 am

Thanks for the replies. Sinking the turntable into the board isn’t an option at the moment, though it may be in the future.

What’s Bristol board? I’ve got some bits of plywood, of varying thickness that I thought about cutting a ring out of to put under the tracks to raise them level, though I’d still have an incline from the points from the oval. But at least a lot of the issue would be solved. So as long as the track were firmly fixed, it shouldn’t matter if they’re not clipped into both clips on the turntable?

Not looking to go to overboard with a fix as we’re about to put our house on the market, so will hopefully be moving in the not too distant future. If we do, he’d have a bedroom to himself and we could completely redesign the layout so it’s not just under his bed.

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Re: Fitting a Turntable?

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:53 am

Raise the approach track gradually starting as far from the TT as possible. If the stubs of rail embedded in the truntable base aren't level to the turntable deck, it will be better to remove them and lay your very gently sloping approach rails right up to the edge of the deck.
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