John and Tim's N gauge project

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FishBowlMan
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John and Tim's N gauge project

Postby FishBowlMan » Tue Nov 28, 2006 2:18 pm

Hi all,

To try and combat my urge to keep going out and spending money that I don't have, I visited my parents the other week and picked up all of my n scale railway bits and pieces.

I currently have a spare room in the flat that I rent, and in lieu of getting another flatmate in, I thoought I may as well make some constructive use of the space - and attempt to justify effectively paying more rent than I actually need to!

My background is with computer software and electronics. My main reason for constructing this layout is to have some inherently complex operating possibilities that I can design some computer software and build some electronics myself to enable automated control of the layout. Oh yes, and to run some trains :D

As most of my stuff hasn't run for 20 odd years, with the exception of a controller I built for a college project about 15 years ago, all of my engines really need a good service. This will occur sporadically as time and money allow.

A trip to the local model shop with the intention of getting some track pins resulted in me buying a 2nd hand GWR saddle tank for £25. My head justified this by saying I needed something to test the track layout with!!!

A friend had some chipboard lying around, so 2 of these crammed into the car and some initial testing could take place:

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Things then went silly as my mate Tim came round and we decided to "test some sidings!"

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Well, you need to check the points work!!!!!

Finally, a small incline test:

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More to follow... (and I really must get round to packing the tent away!)
There is no room inside a box.

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Infrontcat
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Postby Infrontcat » Tue Nov 28, 2006 2:28 pm

Looks like you have got well and truly hooked again :wink:

Nice one. Good to see some intellingent, scientific, purposeful research going on. Though personally, I'd have just used it as an excuse to play trains.... :roll:

Do put a plan up when you've got one!

Cheers

Tim
"Kashi-mashi, kashi-mashi..."

Moorcroft (St Anthonys)

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FishBowlMan
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Postby FishBowlMan » Tue Nov 28, 2006 2:29 pm

That lot was a couple of weeks ago.

Last week I was at my work place in Luton. The unit a couple of doors away had a load of scrap mdf (approx 3" x 1" by 10'). Another carload, and it meant I could now start on the baseboard proper. Out came the tools, and here are the results:

1: Cross-braces.

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2: Here be legs...

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3: Nearly there

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4: Adding the diagonal cross-brace in the middle made the whole structure steady!

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I have no set track plan down, and probably won't. I will post a rough idea of what's in my scrambled brain soon, so you can see just how mad my idea really is.

John.
There is no room inside a box.

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Derek
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Postby Derek » Tue Nov 28, 2006 4:20 pm

Hey John, excellent progress and superb joinery!
(It's amazing what you can find in Luton!)

Now you can 'play trains' to your heart's content, without having to worry too much about a track plan, scenery, stations etc etc ;)

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FishBowlMan
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Postby FishBowlMan » Tue Nov 28, 2006 6:56 pm

Thanks for the comments Tim and Derek. Me calling it "testing" was perhaps a bit ott. You're right Tim, it was really an excuse to play :D The frame looks better in the photos than close up, Derek. Having said that, it is sturdy enough and that's the main thing. I was quite pleased that as the majority of it was offcuts or unwanted sheets, the price of the whole thing cost about £2.00 and that was purely for a pack of chipboard screws.

I will try and post something resembling a track plan later today. Here are a few taster photos of initial progress. Nothing is set in stone (or properly tacked down yet) so is subject to change. Massively probably :)

1: Initial plan for the station complex for the outside "loop". Loop is in quotes here for reasons that will become apparent when the track "plan" is posted. The set-track curves will be replaced with flexi. They are there purely for a quick loop as I am concentrating on the far end of the board at the moment.

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2: Twin mainline tracks along the length of the baseboard will curve round to the left in a tunnel. The 2 sets of points and the 15 degree crossover are to tap off to the main station complex. These will also be in a seperate tunnel as part of the same hill.

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3: Having fun with flexi! The 2 lines on the left are the mainlines and the line with the stupidly long (for the saddle tank anyway) rake is heading round to the mainline station.

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4: At this point, the board got shifted to its permanent position in the corner of the room, leaving enough room for me to squeeze round the back! (And the tent got packed neatly away. In otherwords, thrown into the cupboard for the time being!)

Added the 2nd mainline (again ignore the set track curves at the bottom of the picture) so I could test the running of the flexi curves / points complex at the top.

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5: We're getting there. This bit is virtually complete in terms of track laying.

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6: The 2 mainlines each have a choice of 3 platforms.

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7: Temporary joining of the mainline station platforms to allow a loop for playing. Err, I mean testing, obviously!

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That's me up to date for now, until at least the weekend. These shots were at random intervals over the preceding week up until about half an hour ago. It hasn't all shot up this afternoon you'll be relieved to know.

Credit must go to my mate Tim again for his help in laying this out over the last couple of days... and for pointing me in the direction (literally) of the model shop in Halesowen!

Will post a plan later with any luck.
There is no room inside a box.

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chrisalddin
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Postby chrisalddin » Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:12 pm

a good start there!

ceep it going!

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Whatnothomas
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Postby Whatnothomas » Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:51 am

Thats amazing progress for a weeks work.

What size is the baseboard ??

Keep the pics coming.

Andrew

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live-frog
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Postby live-frog » Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:46 am

Nice station layout John .
The track on the right hand side looks a bit close to the edge. Personally,I'd put a retaining wall there to stop a rake disappearing over the side !
Cheers
Ron

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Spavo
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Postby Spavo » Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:50 am

Yeah this is niceeeee man! Great start.....

Perhaps you should start testing some more rolling stock, ballasting and scenic items soon, I hear they all need a thorough test too........

Really nice looking layout so far.....

Gav.
Watford FC For Me Since 1976

Pete
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Postby Pete » Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:52 am

Hi

Are you using Fleischmann track, I notice the controller looks like a Fleischmann too.

What sort of stock will you be running?

Pete
It's the nature of evolution
The dinosaurs went to Hell

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Derek
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Postby Derek » Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:04 am

Those last shots look really good John, you're moving along nicely :)

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FishBowlMan
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Postby FishBowlMan » Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:18 pm

Hi folks,

thanks for your kind words - very inspirational :)

Andrew, the baseboards are 4' long by about 3 1/2' wide so I currently have a length of 8'. I have been promised another board of the same size so that will be fitted to the end giving me a 12' space. The platform section will be extended as I'm determined to be able to run 8 carriages for the mainline trains and have platforms accordingly.

Ron, where the track currently loops using the set-track curves will be extended when the other baseboard arrives - hopefully in a couple of weeks. The track by the station edge of the board is a bit close to the edge. The trains will be running slowly at this point though. I may put something there as you suggest if I experience problems. No cliff jumpers so far...

Gav, ballasting and scenery will have to wait for a bit. The hill and tunnel complex at the left-hand side will probably be done first as I plan on running track over the top there soon. When the other baseboard arrives I will be in a better position to lay the track permanently. More rolling stock will appear when I've serviced the loco's as I am only really able to run the pannier tank at the moment.

Pete. Good spot there. I have 2 Fleischmann controllers (as well as 2 hornby ones I inherited from somewhere and one I made for a college project. All will be put to use for this. The set-track is all fleischmann and the flexi is peco. The fleischmann stuff is track that I had as a kid (along with some Lima bits as well). As for rolling stock. Anything and everything. I am more of a steam enthusiast (despite the deltic some of you may have noticed in one of the pictures). I mainly have british outline - mainly old BR and some big 4, but have picked up some rather nice german coaches as part of a job lot on e-bay. Also a varying selection of open and closed goods wagons from different periods. While the overall theme is a bit mix and match, I want to try and have individual trains that do match.

Derek, unfortunately progress has come to a grinding halt now as I am away for work until the weekend - sunny Luton again. Hopefully I'll find some more mdf.

Thanks again for your comments folks. Any more questions, please do not hesitate to ask,

John.
There is no room inside a box.

Lofty

Postby Lofty » Wed Nov 29, 2006 1:12 pm

Going well, keep on trucking 8)

Lofty

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Class 60
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Postby Class 60 » Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:46 pm

Great progress John :shock: keep it up :D

westbrom
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Postby westbrom » Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:47 pm

Looking good John, keep it up.


Neil


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