Frontington & Backwoods Railway

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.
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minipix
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Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:29 pm

Re: Frontington & Backwoods Railway

Postby minipix » Sun Sep 08, 2019 9:00 am

An update on the loco front. The 08 shunter and the bright blue 0-4-0 have both now sold, off to (hopefully) happy new owners. And at about the same time, I've taken delivery of a Bachmann 45xx 2-6-2 Small Prairie. And it's wonderful.

I've always loved the look of the GWR livery, and this tank engine really looks the part on my layout. It's runs nice and smoothly, and copes well with my dodgy track. There was only one set of points where it persistently derailed its front bogie, but I've just turned the loco around and now it's fine. If anything, it'll add some variety to have one loco facing one way and one facing the other! For the moment, because I've only got room in my engine shed for two locos, I've taken my Terrier off and put back into storage, but it's easy enough to get out again if I want it.

Given that the Terrier was called "Guinevere" and the J94 was called "Lancelot", I'm thinking of continuing the trend and calling my new 45xx "Arthur". What do you think?

I'll try to take some video at some point, it's been a while and my YouTube channel is feeling unloved. In the meantime, here are a couple of photos. Not the best, as they were taken on my phone in a hurry (because the battery was almost empty), and I'm not entirely pleased with the framing or exposure of some shots. But at least it gives you an idea of what 4550 looks like in context.
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Frontington & Backwoods Railway: https://www.matthewdawkins.co.uk/catego ... way-build/
LocoSound - sound effects for DC model railways: https://mafu-d.github.io/loco-sound

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minipix
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:29 pm

Frontington & Backwoods Railway - dirt crossing and ground levers

Postby minipix » Thu Oct 10, 2019 12:58 pm

I had one of those 'eureka' moments recently. It had bothered me slightly that access from the station to the engine shed was so limited, with only a wooden barrow crossing to get staff across. I finally realised what was missing - a level crossing.

So I used some leftover 'dirt' from a garden kit I got for Christmas (which I think is just coloured sand) and glued it down across the track, making sure I left plenty of room for all the wheels, and making sure it was well stuck down - don't want any of that sand getting in my locos! With the addition of a little fencing, it looks quite deliberate, and makes the logical connection between the engine shed and the storage yard. It's not a smooth and pristine crossing, because it's not for general traffic; it's just enough to allow for the station staff to drive over the line when they need to.

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Something else I've been pondering is to do with points. When I recently visited Minehead station I noticed that while the signal box controls the 'main' sets of points and access to the main line, most of the auxiliary sidings were controlled manually using ground levers. I figured that approach would probably apply on my layout too, so instead of assuming the signal box will control all the points it's now only controlling some. For the rest, I needed some levers.

You can buy kits, of course, but I didn't have any knocking around and couldn't be bothered to buy and build them, so I scratch-built my own. The frame is just some chopped up bits of plastic sleepers (similar to what I saw in some of the real-life photos), and the levers themselves are just thin bits of black plasticard. Not exactly detailed, I know, but hopefully enough to give the right impression.

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A question for those who know stuff - if the points are controlled by ground levers, what impact does that have on the ground signals? I've got them positioned next to each of the points to indicate to the driver which way they are allowed to go, but is that right? Would the driver just see which way the points are positioned and make their own judgement?
Frontington & Backwoods Railway: https://www.matthewdawkins.co.uk/catego ... way-build/
LocoSound - sound effects for DC model railways: https://mafu-d.github.io/loco-sound

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minipix
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:29 pm

Frontington & Backwoods Railway - coach lighting

Postby minipix » Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:00 pm

I've been looking for ways to light up my coaches. With my little Hornby 4-wheeled coaches I made some little battery-powered LED setups that slotted inside, but they were a bit crude and actually I don't tend to use those coaches at the moment. I had looked at TrainTech's motion-sensitive rigs, which are battery-powered and turn on automatically when it detects movement. They look great, but at £20 per coach, that's rather pricey for me.

And then, after a bit of searching around, I stumbled across a much more affordable option provided by Layouts4u. They look like a small outfit (from the website at least), but what they offer looks great. They have a similar solution to TrainTech, but instead of being motion-sensitive it's turned on and off with a magnet, meaning you can control it without even touching the carriage, which is ideal. If anything, this works better for my layout, because during daytime running I probably wouldn't want the lights on anyway. To make things even more convincing (and this was the killer for me) the Layouts4u solution was only £6 per carriage! Bargain! So I bought three.

The installation was a little tricky, as it comes as a kit that you build yourself, and the wires were rather thin for my liking. In the end, I used my own wire and much more success. The LED strip is self-adhesive, and went into the roof of my carriages perfectly, with the battery pack slotting into the end of the carriage.

If anything, I think the lights are a tad too bright, at least compared with the other lights on the layout. I might add a strip of masking tape over the LED strip to dull it down. I also need to mask off some areas where the light is bleeding through where it shouldn't be (as you can see in the photos). And of course, with the inside lit up so beautifully I really do need to put some people inside too!

Overall, though, I'm really pleased with the kit, and would highly recommend it, especially for anyone on a tight budget.
Attachments
IMG_20191013_111725312.jpg
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Frontington & Backwoods Railway: https://www.matthewdawkins.co.uk/catego ... way-build/
LocoSound - sound effects for DC model railways: https://mafu-d.github.io/loco-sound

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End2end
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Location: At the end....... and sometimes at the other end

Re: Frontington & Backwoods Railway

Postby End2end » Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:23 pm

You can make lighting rigs for your coaches for even cheaper if you buy the componants and build it yourself! :idea:
Image
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=50754&hilit=lighting+coach
Easy enough to add a switch to the circuit for full off and on-able running. :mrgreen:
The pick up springs and nickel conductive pen that you need are less than £25 but you can do 24 coaches before needing to buy another pack of springs.
With the other componants bought in bulk (LED's etc) your looking less than £2 per coach! :D
I should have used Warm white LED's in my 4 wheels coaches and varnished them a few times to take thier brightness down instead of using yellow LED's though. :?
:lol:
Thanks
End2end
"St Blazey's" - The progress and predicaments.
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minipix
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Re: Frontington & Backwoods Railway

Postby minipix » Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:41 pm

Nice idea, thanks for sharing that circuit diagram! I'm running on DC, so I don't have a constant power feed from the track, but if I was running DCC and had lots of carriages to light up then this would be a great solution!
Frontington & Backwoods Railway: https://www.matthewdawkins.co.uk/catego ... way-build/
LocoSound - sound effects for DC model railways: https://mafu-d.github.io/loco-sound

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BrightonMan
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Location: Eastbourne

Re: Frontington & Backwoods Railway

Postby BrightonMan » Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:56 pm

minipix wrote:the Layouts4u solution was only £6 per carriage!

I have been thinking about getting the layouts4U lights for my 2-Bil. Thanks for the info, minipix, they sound good.

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End2end
Posts: 4433
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 9:58 pm
Location: At the end....... and sometimes at the other end

Re: Frontington & Backwoods Railway

Postby End2end » Mon Oct 14, 2019 2:08 pm

minipix wrote:I'm running on DC, so I don't have a constant power feed from the track

It actually works for DC or DCC. :)
The capacitor acts like a stay alive unit, but instead of power to keep a motor of a loco moving, it releases the power back into the circuit to light the coach when there is no track power. The bigger the capacitor, the bigger the charge it can hold, the longer the lights stay on with no power applied to the track.
Imagine your train sitting in the station with the lights still on between arrival and departure. :mrgreen:
No batteries needed either so once built will run with no extra expense.

I did look at all the available off the shelf solutions but none of them gave me the ability to add each LED exactly where I wanted to.
Thanks
End2end
"St Blazey's" - The progress and predicaments.
Welcome‎
Planning
Building
St. Blazey's Works & Depot thread


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