How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

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ChrisGreaves
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How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby ChrisGreaves » Fri Apr 16, 2021 4:50 pm

Daniel wrote:Not much known but old and real: http://www.funimag.com/funimag27/Suchard03.htm

Ref Daniel's post A fascinating read indeed.
It strikes me that a funicular with a sixty-degree slope would make an ideal functioning diorama for someone like me - restarting in the hobby.
(1) Not too much track needed.
(2) Mechanical energy like the cuckoo clock we had when I was young, no need for wiring/AC/DC/DCC etc.
(3) Free-form scratch built carriages only.
(4) No need for locomotives!
(5) Rakes being equal length, they could operate continuously, seeming to be a perpetual-motion machine.
20210416_125250.jpg
If my brain is still working, the points at each end of the passing loop could be self-serving, with a slip-point (I think it is called) such as is used to trap runaway trains. But in my example, rakes coming down the incline, from the top of the diagram, would be channeled to the right-hand side of the diagram, while trains rising to the top of the diagram would pass by the left-hand side of the diagram. In both cases they would pass freely through the slip-points.
If the points were spring-loaded then I would not need any mechanical or electrical power to operate them; the weight of the wagons would be enough to overcome the tension in the springs.
That brings physics into play – I want enough weight to spring the points, but not so much as to require serious priming of the gravity feed mechanism.
The wagons could be loaded from a hopper/coal-chute at the top of the incline and discharge into a receptacle at the foot of the incline.
My job would be to refill the coal-chute at the top of the incline from the collecting receptacle at the foot of the incline each morning before any visitors arrive.
Unless I became adept at cannibalizing the rest of the cuckoo clock clockwork.

This is a dream idea at this stage. My crocuses are in bloom so I can take an enormous amount of criticism this week only(grin!)

(May 2021: I have begun a diary, a work-in-progress)
Cheers
Chris
Last edited by ChrisGreaves on Sun May 02, 2021 1:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Daniel
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:04 pm

Hi Chris,

Any idea about the scale?
____________________

This may be something useful:

ImageDSC00035 by d.caso, on Flickr

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Bigmet
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Bigmet » Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:12 pm

You can make points work in model form with no moving parts at all, just a check rail to drag the vehicles to the correct road when they reach a facing point. (Same principle as a 'divergence' on mixed gauge track.) An oblique slot in the check rail allows the vehicle in the trailing direction to pass through.

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Mountain
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Mountain » Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:42 pm

Some had an even simpler method. They used three rails so no need for any points.

Daniel
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:03 pm


Daniel
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:06 pm


Daniel
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:13 pm

This is a good scale model of the wellknown Romanian funicular

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCSGpsQoyas

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Funicular

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pete12345
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby pete12345 » Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:27 pm

Mountain wrote:Some had an even simpler method. They used three rails so no need for any points.


Alternatively, custom wheels with double flanges on one side and none on the other. One carriage follows the left rail, one follows the right. Or, if you wanted to build some track work, interlaced four-rail track. Two frogs but no points. You'd need to offset the two carriages slightly so they both line up at the platforms.
Once an engine attached to a train, was afraid of a few drops of rain...

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Mountain
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Mountain » Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:48 pm

pete12345 wrote:
Mountain wrote:Some had an even simpler method. They used three rails so no need for any points.


Alternatively, custom wheels with double flanges on one side and none on the other. One carriage follows the left rail, one follows the right. Or, if you wanted to build some track work, interlaced four-rail track. Two frogs but no points. You'd need to offset the two carriages slightly so they both line up at the platforms.


It does not need double flanged wheels for it to work. Just ordinary flanges.

I think I have seen the design in use somewhere. Maybe Constitution Hill in Aberystwyth? (I have just checked that railway and it does not share the same middle rail. I am sure it once did, or one such railway like that that I have seen either on TV or in real life does?)


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Mountain
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Mountain » Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:34 am

pete12345 wrote:
Mountain wrote:Some had an even simpler method. They used three rails so no need for any points.


Alternatively, custom wheels with double flanges on one side and none on the other. One carriage follows the left rail, one follows the right. Or, if you wanted to build some track work, interlaced four-rail track. Two frogs but no points. You'd need to offset the two carriages slightly so they both line up at the platforms.



Ahhhh. I see why the double flanged wheels are an advantage now as I saw how they are used on the model that Daniel put on (See his second link). It makes perfect sense.

ChrisGreaves
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby ChrisGreaves » Sat Apr 17, 2021 12:57 pm

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 2:34 pm
Daniel » Any idea about the scale?
Not really. I default to OO thinking from my first childhood, but I suspect that an N-gauge Funicular would make sense, especially if it were integrated as a mini-layout at right-angles to a mainline in OO. That is, the fun part would run out from the back wall towards the front edge of the main layout.
Daniel » This may be something useful:
That’s what I was thinking of in my diagram of your Suchard links. I have since learned (below) that the term I was looking for was a “check-rail”
Postby Bigmet » Fri Apr 16, 2021 2:42 pm
Bigmet » You can make points work in model form with no moving parts at all, just a check rail to drag the vehicles to the correct road when they reach a facing point. (Same principle as a 'divergence' on mixed gauge track.) An oblique slot in the check rail allows the vehicle in the trailing direction to pass through.
Thanks Bigmet; that answers the question posed in my subject line – my brain was on holiday when I needed to remember “check rail”. Usually placed at the start of the shunting spur/yard. And FWIW an excellent model of a transistor, were one interested in building a computer out of cannibalized Peco Points.
Postby Mountain » Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:12 pm
Mountain » Some had an even simpler method. They used three rails so no need for any points.
Excellent! I am learning from this thread that there are many trade-offs. A three-rail system for a two-train funicular requires a passing-loop, and too requires a little bit of rail surgery to effect the two junctions. On the other hand there is no need to purchase and then cannibalize regular points with low-tension springing.
Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:33 pm
Daniel » More chocolate:
Better than chocolate! Images which include a comprehensible diagram of Mountain’s three-rail idea
index.png
index.png (14.13 KiB) Viewed 155 times

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:36 pm
... and...
http://www.funimag.com/photoblog/index. ... uniculars/
Well, yes, especially the “Fairfax Manor Incline Railroad” with only one car. More tradeoffs.
A one-car system uses rail no more complex that a single length of track, no points etc., but then it possibly requires some sort of counterweight to offset the mechanical energy required to drag the rake of empty wagons back to the top of the incline.
This based on an idea that the fun rail is bringing ores down the slope to the mainline depot at the foot.
I had figured that a loaded rake with genuine grit (shoveled from the end of the driveway and rinsed well after the road-ploughs have finished blocking me in for the season) would provide enough mechanical energy to lift the unloaded rake to the top of the incline, and that the only input of energy would be priming the top-level coal-chute with grit at the start of the day.
Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:43 pm
Daniel » This is a good scale model of the well-known Romanian funicular
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCSGpsQoyas
Another single-track idea. From whence the power? It seems to me that loads of timber are travelling up the valley wall, so there must be a much larger input of energy? Perhaps a steam-powered winch using woodchips and sawdust as a power source?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Funicular
“At the engine room at the upper end of the track …” this requires some thought. In real life, why would the power house have to be at the top of the incline? Regardless of whether loads are travelling up or down, it seems to me that the powerhouse could turn the drive-pulley spindle from the bottom of the incline.
In the Romanian lumber yard, the dressed lumber is going uphill, so the saw mill is on the valley floor, so the fuel source (chips/dust) would be to hand right there. Of course the saw-mill might be driven by the valley stream, so there is another source of energy on the valley floor, at the base of the fun railway.
Hmmmm!
Postby pete12345 » Fri Apr 16, 2021 4:57 pm
pete12345 » Alternatively, custom wheels with double flanges on one side and none on the other. One carriage follows the left rail, one follows the right. Or, if you wanted to build some track work, interlaced four-rail track. Two frogs but no points. You'd need to offset the two carriages slightly so they both line up at the platforms.
I read a rebuttal further down and this morning, I think, a rebuttal-doubled, but in the meantime my mind dwells on tradeoffs, as usual.
Double-flanged wheels are easy enough to make by cannibalizing axles and cementing the face of a spare wheel to the face of an axle-mounted wheel.
That requires double-wide rails, and in theory one could somehow weld a second rail to the regular rail on a length of track.
But the double-flanged wheel is a solution to the one-track-passing-loop problem, so that suggests some extremely careful bending of the extra rail to fit the regular curves of the junctions.
Postby Mountain » Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:18 pm
Mountain » It does not need double flanged wheels for it to work. Just ordinary flanges.
I am now trying to wrap my head around this. I consider that for both the real fun rail and the model fun rail perhaps only one flanged wheel, on the outer track, is required.
Why do regular wheels have a flange? To guide the trains as they travel around left-hand and right-hand curves at speed. The funicular railway does not travel at speed. Perhaps one flanged wheel for each two-wheeled axle is sufficient for guidance through the passing loop?
Postby Daniel » Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:50 am
Daniel » https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/ ... 1834151850
It’s no good, Daniel. I see through your cunning trap! You want me to build a model funicular railway diorama using nothing but my wallet! Now why are you doing this?
Because you are afraid that my scratch building skills will put yours to shame?
Relax my friend! In just two months all I have managed so far is to paint a few pieces of a Pug 0-4-0 green, matt black, and buffer-vermillion. There is still silver/copper etc and gluing to get through. And this is a 0-4-0!
Your status is safe for at least another fifty years. (grin)
Unread postby Mountain » Sat Apr 17, 2021 7:04 am
Mountain » Ahhhh. I see why the double flanged wheels are an advantage now as I saw how they are used on the model that Daniel put on (See his second link). It makes perfect sense.
OK. I am lost again.
The double-flange(1) makes sense to me in terms of a three-rail system of two rakes. The outer rails (left and right) are assigned to each rake, but the centre rail is shared. The double-flanged wheels are the outer-wheels in both cases, so the guidance comes only from the two outer rails.
But then the single-flange made sense in terms of the three-rail system, captioned (3) in the diagram below.
index.png
index.png (14.13 KiB) Viewed 155 times

The tradeoff for a regular-flanged rake is that no points are needed, but I would be assembling and welding some customized track for the entire length of the funicular.
Of course, my initial idea (less than 24 hours ago) was based on the cuteness of the Suchard single-track funicular with a little passing loop in the middle to add interest and challenge.
Resorting to a two-track system simplifies track, wagons and pretty well everything, leaving the complexity to a magic perpetual-motion machine which is cunningly disguised by me refilling the upper hopper each morning (also known as “winding up the cuckoo-clock).
Please and thank you, could you elaborate on “the model that Daniel put on (See his second link)”? I have checked Daniel’s second link in this thread and cannot see what you mean.

Cheers
Chris
(1) I mis-typed “flange” as “fange” and for a second my brain segued into “fang” and I almost got diverted to cog-funiculars.
C

Daniel
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Daniel » Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:39 pm

Chris:

You wrote:

It’s no good, Daniel. I see through your cunning trap! You want me to build a model funicular railway diorama using nothing but my wallet! Now why are you doing this?
Because you are afraid that my scratch building skills will put yours to shame?
Relax my friend! In just two months all I have managed so far is to paint a few pieces of a Pug 0-4-0 green, matt black, and buffer-vermillion. There is still silver/copper etc and gluing to get through. And this is a 0-4-0!
Your status is safe for at least another fifty years. (grin)

Well, ...now you say it may be so. I will check that with Magoo. You probably are right.But it is he, not I , who di such things! :lol:
Anyway the drive to post the link was simply that I have been wanting to get one of such sets since I was 18 and now I couldn't avoid searching for it.

Daniel

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Bufferstop
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby Bufferstop » Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:31 pm

Postby Daniel » Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:36 pm
Well, yes, especially the “Fairfax Manor Incline Railroad” with only one car. More tradeoffs.
A one-car system uses rail no more complex that a single length of track, no points etc., but then it possibly requires some sort of counterweight to offset the mechanical energy required to drag the rake of empty wagons back to the top of the incline.[/quote]

If the incline is on made up ground the counterweight can be in a vertical shaft, I've seen drawings of the principal but never a photo of one. I have seen at RM York a very short one in which the counterweight slides up and down between the wheels of the single car, but if the system is of any length and the space is available it makes sense to use counterbalanced cars, less hanging around waiting for the next one ascending. If the service isn't frequent enough your potential descending passengers might just be tempted to walk. I've often thought about the possibility in my back garden average slope 1in12 steepest section 1in 8, make it a water balanced system and call it a water feature.
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pete12345
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Re: How is my brain nowadays??? (Funicular layout)

Postby pete12345 » Sun Apr 18, 2021 8:32 am

Another idea that comes to mind would be a freight-carrying funicular along the lines of the Welsh slate railways. Perhaps one wagon remains permanently coupled to each end of the cable to make operation simpler (due to some railway regulation involving a brake van) and alternate trains of loaded and empty wagons are coupled to the brake vans to ascend and descend the hill.
Once an engine attached to a train, was afraid of a few drops of rain...


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