Tuesday, March 4, 2014

February Update - reposted

Sorry it is a bit late - Dad's 99th birthday celebrations disrupted this a bit. Following a very challenging month with the loss of my very dear fried BJ in January the discussions in the Round Robin Group has firstly centered on our loss but secondly that BJ would want us to continue to complete what we had started to show off his great achievements.

Maintenance tasks have started as a result of the shakedown activities and these uncovered some heat stress related problems.

But I have started doing some things - I finally got all of my additional DCC items from China (Cheaper but a lot of hassle as some were damaged in transit)..  I must say, if you use the PayPal dispute resolution process, they seem to be very fair and it resulted in much quicker action by the supplier who by the way could not speak or write hardly any English.

Testing of the Ore loading process showed a need to refine some aspects to improve reliability.

Progress on the U50 decoder and lighting install just did not happen - three months in a row when I sat down to complete it it was just too hard.... - sorry Nigel G.

Turnout Motor Maintenance Jimtown

It was noticed during shakedown running that two turnouts were not functioning 100% so it was time to have a closer look now the train room has cooled down.

Both turnouts are on the top level so maintenance is a pain....  One was the mounting screws were a tad tight so when loosened just a little it operated ok.  The other was not that simple....

The offending turnout motor

In order to get at the motor I had to remove the flower mill on the lower level to gain good access. This was a design feature so not too difficult. But it revealed that the heatwave had caused some problems see below. Looks like the problem is a sticky accessory switch.

Thanks must go to Chris for helping me re-install the turnout motors - a two person job!

Local Heatwave - Buckled Track

Well now I know why some of the cars were off the track the other day - I was baffled as it was straight track!  We have had a lot of days between 35 & 45 degrees Celsius since the start of the new year.

Temperature graph for  Wednesday 12 February.
Where did that kink come from?

Approach to Fleets Loop

And these kinks as well?

Double track main around Fleets Loop

View of Both tracks
 Well I will need to remove some track pins get the Dremel cutoff disc to work and rejoin with some additional gaps - oh that means I will have to put in some additional droppers or wires to jump the new joiners too...

Went down after the heat had subsided and look...

The "S's" have just about gone & gaps between rails back.... and I did not do a thing!

Command Control System

I finally got my spare command station.and now have 4 wireless and 9 tethered throttles installed and operating.

Ore Loads

Last month I reported on how I used epoxy to fix two 3 mm cylindrical magnets to the underside of the load supplied with the Athearn ore trucks.

When the guys used the some of the new Rix uncouplers to remove the loads at the Steel Works the magnetic flux was a bit "light" on a few loads so I will go back and add two more magnets per load to get a better result.

Grand Opening Rescheduled

Well I have decided that the deferred event must happen albeit a year late!  So invites are out for a June 2nd event! 15 acceptances to date consisting of  8 modelers and 7 VIP's.

A few more shakedown runs are planned to test operations and provide some familiarity for operators.

Abrupt halt

Well thinks were tracking pretty well and things starting to be achieved again then Dad was admitted to hospital and that derailed what was planned for the rest of the month.  Luckily he has recovered and was home for his 99th birthday celebration at my place.

That's it for this month.

Thanks again to those that continue to help me achieve my ambitions and hello to all my followers!

Till the end of March.