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September 19, 2018, 01:31:59 AM
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1  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: End-of-Train device on: September 17, 2018, 09:24:02 AM
You could probably make your own using the ideas shown here:

The outer case could be modified to whatever shape you need.

2  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Hurricane Florence Train Impacts on: September 12, 2018, 07:41:58 AM
Amtrak trains in the South are undergoing cancellations or schedule modifications beginning Wednesday and lasting through Sunday. Amtrak will waive additional charges for those looking to change their reservation due to inconveniences caused by Hurricane Florence. The changes affect routes along the coastal corridor. Northeast Corridor trains won't operate south of Washington, while trains on some other routes that run through Philadelphia en route to or from the South are canceled entirely. A full list of impacted trains can be found on Amtrak's website. The pending arrival of Florence also has prompted CSX and Norfolk Southern to curtail their service.

NS will temporarily close its Norfolk, Virginia, headquarters due to an evacuation order being issued by Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam.
NS told its shippers that its intermodal customer service team will unavailable by phone during the evacuation. The railroad has ceased accepting intermodal shipments destined for Norfolk area terminals. Although other intermodal facilities were scheduled to maintain normal hours, gate and terminal closures may occur as Florence nears landfall.

CSX put into place its Hurricane Action Plan, which includes protecting equipment in the stormís projected path and preparing areas that could be affected. It advised customers to expect delays for any shipments traveling through the Interstate 95 corridor and that it has halted rail service to and from Portsmouth, Virginia. A terminal in Charleston, South Carolina, will also close and remain closed throughout the storm.

And if you live anywhere in the red area shown on the map, and you have not evacuated yet, you need to get moving NOW!
Even if you've ridden hurricanes out before, please don't try it with this one. The predicted flooding is going to make what Floyd did look like a rain puddle. Stay safe, stay alive, and get out now.

3  Discussion Boards / Thomas & Friends / Re: Small Sodor Display on: September 12, 2018, 12:30:17 AM
Went in to work on 'Sodor' this morning, and was told to shut down the entire layout because the shopping center is going into "Florence Prep" mode, and they don't want to take any chances with the electrical in the event of flooding. So it looks like everything is on hold until sometime next week, after the storm passes. If there's anything left to work on.

At least we're not in a storm surge flooding area. All we have to worry about is possible damage to the shopping center skylights, flooding from heavy rains, and trees going over from high winds and saturated ground.

If anyone's on the VA/NC/SC coast, listen to the evacuation orders, stay safe, and get the heck out of there. The coastal flooding on this one is going to be really bad. Way worse than 'Floyd', which was bad enough.

4  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Frontgate Holiday Express Coach/BINGO Gondola Information Request on: September 12, 2018, 12:18:25 AM
Considering 45mm gauge track in 1:22.5 scale represents European 1 meter narrow gauge, and in 1:20.32 scale it represents 3 foot narrow gauge, the more I think on it, the more I believe the "N G" in "B I N G O" is for "Narrow Gauge".

So the most likely meaning is, "Bachmann Industries Narrow Gauge Ontario".

5  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Testing the "Free" Photobucket site. on: September 11, 2018, 02:47:01 AM
Now I'm torn about whether to stay with Flickr, or go back to Photobucket. Photobucket's a bit easier to use, but will the leave the "free" part "free" for long? Decisions, decisions.

6  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Fairbanks Morse Wheel contact H635X MT002 on: September 10, 2018, 02:37:05 PM
If you can't find the contact, the complete truck assemply is available:

You can also bend the sides of Kadee #5 coupler centering springs out, then trim down to make a replacement pickup.
Something like this:

7  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Frontgate Holiday Express Coach/BINGO Gondola Information Request on: September 10, 2018, 07:43:09 AM
The passenger car is a "Big Hauler" car: BACHMANN G 23991 FRONTGATE HOLIDAY EXPRESS PASSENGER CAR LV1141
The graphics were a limited run for the Times Square Ball Drop Centennial in 2007. No idea how many were produced. One item of note about the Centennial, in celebration New York went 'green' for the ball drop, using only LED lights.

Since it was for a specific train show, I suspect the run of BINGO gondolas was even more limited. The only thing I can think of it might stand for is: Bachmann Industries N?Huh? G?Huh? Ontario. Narrow Gauge for the N G makes the most sense, but someone from Bachmann would have to confirm that.

To post pictures you have to use a picture hosting site, e.g., Flickr, Facebook, etc., and link the pics URL using image tags, [i m g][/i m g], only without the spaces.

8  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: New Railroad, sorta on: September 09, 2018, 03:41:47 PM
Once you figure out where to find the links to copy, Flickr works well too.

9  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Replace Knuckle Coupler on F7 Rear end on: September 08, 2018, 06:00:30 PM
There should be a plastic clip holding the coupler in place. You need to gently pry each side away from the coupler box until it disengages. Then you will be able to remove the clip and coupler. Snap back into place with the new coupler.

10  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann Plus F7A-B Decoder DCC upgrade on: August 30, 2018, 03:18:29 PM
If all your looking for is motor and light control, no sound, it pretty much pretty much comes down to personal preference and size.

Forget the 'HO', 'N', etc., designations. For most HO locos you'll want a decoder rated for at least 1 amp, and that will fit the space in your loco. As long as it's rated 1 amp, or better, you may find an 'N' or 'Z' decoder is the best fit for whatever you're working on.

Personally, I tend to use TCS decoders. Not because there's are better than anyone else's, but their documentation is a lot easier to understand for those of us who aren't "DCC Geeks".

11  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann Plus F7A-B Decoder DCC upgrade on: August 29, 2018, 06:54:32 PM
Thank you very much. That makes perfect sense.

The TCS decoder instructions apply to any manufacturers hardwired decoder you might want to use, not just their T1 decoder. There is an NMRA standard for decoder wiring colors. If you really want to use the T1 the link is here: Other decoders can be looked at by clicking the 'Product' link at the top of the T1 page.

You might want to check several manufacturers listings, Bachmann, Digitrax, Lenz, NCE, TCS, etc., before deciding on which one to use.

12  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann Plus F7A-B Decoder DCC upgrade on: August 29, 2018, 03:02:01 PM
With DCC using the chassis as for one side of the motor connection can result in "not good things" happening to the decoder if the chassis hits the rails during a derailment. By isolating the motor connections, that potential problem is eliminated. From the pics I've seen, the F9 chassis in the instructions is close enough to the F7 that there shouldn't be much, if any, difference in the installation.

Whether you follow the Digitrax or TCS instructions is up to you. Either way will work, but there is a potential risk, however slight, with the Digitrax method.

13  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann Plus F7A-B Decoder DCC upgrade on: August 29, 2018, 12:24:20 PM
The Digitrax instructions call for using the existing chassis 'ground' connection for one side of the motor connection. If you want to fully isolate the motor these instruction on the TCS site show how:

Their for the Bachmann F9, but the chassis is close enough to the F7 not to make much difference.

14  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Problem with DCC Turnout on: August 26, 2018, 03:02:50 PM
Sometime the "rack and pinion" gears between the solenoids and point throw become disengaged during shipping.

Turn the turnout over and carefully remove the bottom cover. Looking at the picture above, follow the stiff wire from the point throw on the left to the platic arm that should have a gear on the opposite end. The gear should be meshed with the teeth of the rack just below it in the picture. The rack should be connected to the solenoid arm.

If anything is out of place, reconnect it and replace the cover.

15  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: 1870s California in Sn3.5 - Reboot on: August 26, 2018, 02:51:45 PM
A couple of key measurements in differentiating HO from Sn3.5 would be the height of doors, and the spacing of ladder steps.

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