Hello once again - Halecross Park

Post pictures and information about your own personal model railway layout that is under construction. Keep members up-to-date with what you are doing and discuss problems that you are having.
bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Hello once again - Halecross Park

Postby bluechang » Sat Jul 25, 2009 11:04 pm

Hi all.

Long time reader and in the process of creating a new N gauge layout. My new baseboard was constructed last week and is 5ft x 3ft. I have been designing the layout over and over and over again using XTrkCad and have finally decided on this layout that was in a track layout book by C J Freezer.
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I am using Peco Setrack code 80 as this was what I had a lot of from my last layout. The layout will comprise of a double outer loop and 3 lane station at the rear of the layout (on the right in this picture) I will be using a mishmash of rolling stock - some of the latest stuff I have purchased is late BR 83-94, however if I see something that catches my eye, then I will run it. However, I won't be buying any more rolling stock until the layout is up and running and also because its nearing the triplets birthday and there are presents to be bought!.

To begin with, I will be opting for a DC operation, however, in time I would like to go down the route of DCC ( again, money permits when this happens) I would also like to automate all the points on the layout, but again that will have to happen at a slow pace due to lack of funds

I'm hoping you guys will be able to give me some constructive criticism regarding my layout, and any possible changes that I could make to the layout to make it operate better, And I hope to try and keep this thread updated with photos as and when i find time to do anything to the layout.


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From the pictures you can see the baseboard construction. After building it, it does kind of look like I have gone a little OTT in the strength of the table. It doesn't move, I can tell you that!! The pictures also show a different layout. That was one I was experimenting with until I stumbled upon the final design. You can also see the size of my old baseboard, which is leant up against the wardrobe (and the baby bath under the table!)

Image

this is the extent of my rolling stock. It's not a lot, but then again, I haven't had the cash to plow into buying a lot (as yet) due to the triplets.

Anyway, i will leave it for now, and hopefully will put some more pictures up in the next few days or so :)
Last edited by bluechang on Mon Dec 21, 2009 7:53 pm, edited 13 times in total.

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Spavo
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Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby Spavo » Sat Jul 25, 2009 11:44 pm

An excellent start and your baseboard certainly looks up to the job, very nice and well done.

Gav.
Watford FC For Me Since 1976

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Sun Jul 26, 2009 3:59 pm

minor update and a request for guidance

Received some cork matting from ebay on Saturday just gone - 3 sheets of 36inch x 24 inch. will need to cut one sheet down to fit. i think I may have made an error of judgement as its only 1/16 inch thick. Should I have gotten thicker cork matting or will this suffice?

Secondly, a bit of guidance needed. I have this cork matting. What's the best way to glue it to the baseboard? Would standard wood glue (PVA) do or do i need to use something else?

Will post an XTrkCad diagram of the layout a bit later on, when I get a bit of quiet time after the kids have gone to bed, that is if anyone is interested?

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Sun Jul 26, 2009 10:43 pm

I have been having a think about the layout (again!!!) As much as I like the look of the layout I had finally chosen, I think I should be trying something different. maybe multiple levels, which got me thinking of a figure of eight, double track with a 4 lane station just after the bridge and sidings either in the middle or at the back of the board. Like someone (on here or somewhere else - can't remember) said, 'be happy with the layout as it is a bugger to changed once everything is completed'

So I am putting my layout on hold for a while until I can either design a layout that I like for more than 4 days or get someone to design something for me. Either way, it looks like I'm going to be 'ensuring all rolling stock stays in working order' whilst I figure out what i want to do and how to go about it.

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Tank
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Location: Kenley, Surrey.
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Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby Tank » Mon Jul 27, 2009 6:16 am

I should think the cork you've bought will be fine, as it'll take the noise out of the track. PVA is definitely good enough for sticking it down. I didn't use cork on my current layout, due to forgetting about it. :roll:

I think your layout is very good, and the plan looks good. Different levels of track do add to the fun of it, and with the area you've got to play with, I'd certainly be tempted to add a higher level. :)
N Gauge Ministry of Defence Depot:- Click Here
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bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:26 am

I've taken the night to think it over, and I will continue to do the original layout, with maybe one or two changes - I think in the long run I will add a further level whether it be above or below the current height, so will add in a couple of points somewhere in the outer loop to accommodate any additional extensions I may decide to do in the future - money permitting.

Today will hopefully consist of laying the cork matting down on the board - thanks for the reply re PVA glue Tank - thought I was going to have to go out to Wickes and get some tile adhesive tape to stick it down. Next task (if i'm allowed) will be relaying the 3 loops and sidings and marking out where the points will sit and drilling holes for the potential purchase of point motors (sometime in the future). Will also need to put an order in for the 3 additional points to accommodate any future plans and to also add in the final set of sidings on the L.H.S. of the top photo.

Is Hattons the cheapest place online for track/points or is there somewhere cheaper?

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sishades
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Location: Burston Norfolk

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby sishades » Mon Jul 27, 2009 11:51 am

I am impressed by the look of your baseboard, looks strong and well made.
High towards the far post,Howard with a header,Hes done it!Steve Howard has scored for Leicester City,Bedlam here at the Walkers Stadium. the Leeds United players are flat out on the turf in utter despair. Leicester City are going to win again

bluechang
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Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:26 pm

Thanks sishades - It weighs an absolute ton - Takes 2 to move it. The legs can be taken off, but I won't be needing to do that anytime soon.

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:38 pm

having found 5 minutes to myself. i have managed to dismantle the layout into sections to begin laying the cork matting. Only one problem that I have found. When I went to B&Q for the timber for the baseboard, I asked my Dad to go find the wood glue and pick some up. What I didnt realise is that he didnt get me a squeezy bottle of wood glue which was what I was after. No he went and got me one of them gun inserts (not sure what the gun is called - for some reason i have mastic gun running through my head)

Either way, I haven't got one of them so am a little screwed until I can ether get out to a local DIY shop for glue or my dad brings one of his gun things up for me to use what I have bought already. A little annoyed at the moment as you can imagine!!

Also tested a theory - I have read that MDF is difficult to get track pins into - tried myslef and had no problems so don't know what all the fuss was about!

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Mon Jul 27, 2009 5:48 pm

A little update for today



Track is now on the shelf under the baseboard in sections (as I mentioned i previous post) I have now cut the cork matting to fit the entire top of the table and will glue it all down tomorrow when I get some time (that is, IF I get some spare time) And then its time for re-laying the track back down onto the cork.

some of the track stored underneath next to my home built RC Buggy (bit blurred - taken on my mobile phone)
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Cork matting cut to size awaiting glue
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Wiring?

What's the best way to electrify the layout? I don't have access to a soldering iron as I know it would be preferable to solder the wires to the underside of a section of track. But what if you don't have a soldering iron - What's the best way to power it all up? For some reason, I had it in my head that I could put screws directly under the fish-plates and wire it up that way, but I think that would be hit and miss, what with getting the screw head to the right height.

What sort of wire is needed for the electrics/ point motors etc as I need to invest in some soon - Possibly even a soldering iron as well

Even though I'm not putting the point motors onto the layout yet, would it be an idea to drill the holes into the board for when I eventually get around to buying them? If so, what size hole would be required?

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Spavo
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Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby Spavo » Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:29 am

Hi there,

From personal experience........buy a soldering iron, they are next to nothing really as a cost and you won't be sorry, there are plenty of brilliant tips on this site for effective soldering and you'll master it in no time.

Also, from personal experience, try to complete as much of your electrics work at the earliest possible stage including drilling holes for point motors, lighting etc etc, you won't regret it.

I have made so many errors on both my OO layout and my 3 previous N gauge layouts on the power issue that on my latest layout I'm not even fixing the baseboard to the frame until I get all the wiring in and soldered connections done.

If you really don't want to get stuck into soldering yet, buy some of these

search item number 280365762384 on ebay, they are pre wired fishplates.....

or something similar, then all you have to do is drill the hole under the board.

Good luck,

Gav.
Watford FC For Me Since 1976

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Tue Jul 28, 2009 5:37 pm

Thanks for the advice Gav (Spavo) I used the ebay reference and purchased 2 packs. Hopefully this will be enough to electrify the layout whilst allowing me to also add in some isolated sections operated via switch on a switchboard (Something I only thought about a few hours ago.

In any case, the cork matting is glued down. Just waiting for it to completely dry out then will begin relaying the track out whilst waiting for the ebay stuff to turn up.

Will also look into getting a soldering iron from ebay. Saw one last night that also came with a multimeter which would probably come in handy at some point during the construction. Before I go buying anything, is there a particular type of solder most suited to this type of work?

No pictures today as there isn't really much to show except watch cork dry!

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bluechang » Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:20 pm

The glue holding the cork matting is now dry. A little unhappy with half of the gluing as it has left streaks in the cork. however it shouldn't be too much of an issue as it will be covered by scenery and other bits.

I have re-laid the track down onto the board, but whilst doing this, i have decided to expand it slightly, so will need to obtain some more half lengths of straight track. A trip to Hattons is probably in order! (I like going into Hattons and having a wander round the shop - may see something I like!!)

Once I have the additional sections of track I will then need to await delivery of the wired fish-plates and will then drill the required holes to feed the cabling through. I'm also going to drill the holes for the point motors so I can then retrofit them when I get some cash together.

I have some photos of where I'm upto with the layout, but need to get them from my mobile phone and then onto photobucket - Will post them up later once I've sorted the kids out.

bluechang
Posts: 404
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:51 pm

Postby bluechang » Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:19 pm

The wired fish-plates have arrived this morning so I can now start looking into wiring the layout up in the next few days. I have read some information about fitting point motors however it has all been fitting them to a OO gauge circuit, so i will need to investigate how to do his before pinning all the track down - anybody got any links to information about N gauge points?

Last order placed with Hattons for the final unexpected bits of track - hoping it will be with me on Saturday so i can get going with the laying of the track in its permanent location.

Also, completely unrelated to this layout - how soon is too soon to begin putting threads for items for sale? I obviously don't want to get banned before I've even started, so wanted to ask the question!


XTrkCad layout design

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As you can see, I have decided to widen the layout slightly, so the holes in the loops will be filled once the hattons order arrives.
Last edited by bluechang on Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

bigbob
Posts: 293
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:21 pm
Location: Chester

Re: My new N gauge layout (Could take a while!!)

Postby bigbob » Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:34 pm

Hi Mate, you can put adverts in "For Sale" any time you want. Putting them in on your first post isn`t a good idea but once you`ve been around for a bit you tend to gain a bit more trust.
There have been a couple of rogue traders recently so just be aware some poeple maybe a bit cautious when you are new and selling.

Bob
Growing old is compulsary, growing up is optional!


ALL CLASS 50`S SHOULD BE CUT UP INTO SMALL PIECES AND USED FOR SOMETHING MORE USEFUL LIKE A PAPER-WEIGHT


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