The end of an era

Discussion of large gauge model railway specific products and related model railway topics (problems and solutions). (1 gauge, O gauge, S gauge etc)
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Location: Cornwall UK

Re: The end of an era

Postby Emettman » Sat Dec 10, 2016 11:26 am

fourtytwo wrote:
Well of course the whole thing is rather comical because the next step up is real FIRE meaning STEAM! but as well all know I think when you turn off the burner it goes out...pop and thats it, 10 minutes later and its cold, no fire risk.......

Well Chris I was thinking of automatic block signalling (several trains following one another). I know sounds crazy in larger scales but I have seen it working in gauge 1 over several acres and implemented it in O gauge in an acre.

I've got a couple of live steamers with radio control: now in well-protected (I hope) storage.
Didn't suit the tight radii on my previous garden line (though withing their spec. They ran, but...)
And didn't adequately handle the unavoidable gradients on my current one.

But if you're up to acres, why not buy a small real railway?

More realistically, with the equivalent salary to 20 years ago, and the price of track and points now, I'd be hesitant to to buy into a G-scale track-power railway of any significant size.
( a range of cheaper possibilities come to mind, but I do have an odd mind.)

"It's his madness that keeps him sane."

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Location: Antipodes

Re: The end of an era

Postby GWR_fan » Tue Dec 13, 2016 4:49 am

fourtytwo wrote:I realize this is an old post, I hope you sold your home ok. Regarding short circuits, this is one reason I sectionalise a layout. I wonder what caused you short circuit, the most common cause I have is the mechanical point setting is not the same as the frog switch although in the larger gauges this is normally avoided by having the frog isolated from the switch blades.....................

Just saw this post update. My first short circuit was caused by a tree growing larger than anticipated over the years and crushing the wiring loom. This was sorted out by breaking the wiring down into isolated sections and troubleshooting from there.

The second short circuit I discovered after I had pulled up all the track. My railway had over forty points all electrically operated. Three of the points had live frogs with polarity switched by expensive LGB microswitch packs attached to the switch machines (point motors). These microswitches are only rated to 3 amps which for outdoor use is a ridiculously low current should a short occur. Apparently over the years the switch packs deteriorated with current draw such that one switch pack short circuited and did not change polarity when the point was thrown.

My railway was hopelessly over engineered with additional wiring, which for an outdoor railway is asking for trouble. As always keep it simple. While the railway was complicated it did last fault free for twelve years or so in an outdoors environment before the first hint of trouble. Nature is your enemy in the garden.

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