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Discussion Boards => Large => Topic started by: devious56 on March 26, 2007, 11:11:47 AM



Title: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 26, 2007, 11:11:47 AM
 ??? Being new to G scale, and just about ready to start laying track, could someone be so kind as to tell me what a reasonable grade would be.  I mean would something like 1 inch rise for every 1 foot traveled be ok, or would that be too much?

Thank you very much,

David Von Stein


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: altterrain on March 26, 2007, 12:10:07 PM
Most real life railroads have top grades of 1%. That's only 1" in 100" (or about 8 feet). The grades for your layout will depend on the type of equipment you will be running. If you are running big steam or diesels with long stretches of freight or passenger cars you will want to keep it to a maximum of a 2% grade (2" in 8'). If you are running logging lines with geared steam (shays and such), a maximum of 4% is typical but you can push that to high as 6% as long as your consists are short.

-Brian


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 26, 2007, 01:21:07 PM
 :-* Brian,

Thank you very much, that is exactly what I was looking for.  Now I can start laying track and be sure everything will work.  I appreciate the info.

David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: John B on March 26, 2007, 01:28:15 PM
David,

As the dew settles in the evening you may find that some engines will start slipping as they go up steep grades.   I have 3% grades on my GRR and the only engine that has a problem is my little BM Indy.  That's becasue she is very light and slips easily.

I see you're from Middleburg.  I live on the Southwest side of Jacksonville.

John


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 26, 2007, 04:24:54 PM
Hello John,

Glad to meet you.  Thanks for the info, and I think that I am going to try to stay at or under 2%.  I should have enough of a run to keep my grade managable.  As a beginner, I have a feeling that I am going to make many mistakes as I go along.  My present problem is now how to clean very tarnished track.  It was set up outside, and is now black.  But the price was right, and I have the time, so I felt I could clean it up and save a couple of bucks.

Thanks again, and maybe we can get together some time.

David Von Stein
dvs56 @ Bellsouth.net (please remove the spaces)


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Paul W. on March 26, 2007, 08:41:49 PM
David,
Welcome to large scale! Since you are new to this scale you may or may not know about track. You said the track was tarnished, don't use abrasive cleaners to remove it. You will end up scoring the railheads and making more areas for dirt to gather.
There are non abrasive cleaners available, or you can use track cleaning fluid on a rag to clean them up.

Good luck with the track laying, and welcome aboard!


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 26, 2007, 10:04:41 PM
Hey Paul,

Thank you for that.  It was recommended to me to use a very fine grade of wet or dry sand paper.  I played around a bit using Never Dull, and Mothers and it is going to take some work.  The sandpaper idea sounded good, but I was afraid that it might damage the rails. 

Thank you again,
David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Paul W. on March 26, 2007, 10:29:36 PM
David,
Getting them clean enough to run will be the hard part, keeping them clean doesn't have to be as much work as people let on. If you keep up with them, it won't take all your time. San Val makes a cleaner called "the Briteblok", it attaches underneath Bachmann bobber caboose's and you just run your train. It's weighted so it stays on the rails while running your train. Two of my very good friends have very large garden RR's, both use brass track and run these cars routinely to keep the tracks clean.


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Kevin Strong on March 26, 2007, 10:55:53 PM
Remember too, that you need only clean the top surface, as that's where the wheels pick up electricity. (And the ends, too, where they slide into the railjoiners.) One thing you may want to try is a bit of muratic acid. This is the stuff that's used to clean cement, and is usually available at the hardware store for a few bucks a gallon. I use it to prep brass prior to painting it, as it takes the top layer of oxidation right off. (The tarnished finish is merely oxidation.) You can cut the strength of the acid by mixing it with water. It'll still be plenty strong. Wear gloves and work outside if at all possible. It's not the nastiest of stuff, but it's still an acid and should be treated with due respect.

Later,

K


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 27, 2007, 07:25:54 AM
Paul - Thank you again, and I realize the get this track ready to run will be the hardest part.  If you run a train enough, keeping the track clean is minor.  But as heavy as the oxidation is on this rail, I have my work cut out for me.  Thanks for the BriteBlok suggestion, I haven't heard of that.  I am thinking of a track cleaning car.

Kevin - Wow, muratic acid, we have some for the pool.  I was using Never Dull trying to clean the top of the rails, and at 200 feet of track, it will take me all summer.  I may try the acid but I am aware how caustic it is.  I appreciate the ideas and help.

David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 27, 2007, 11:01:37 AM
 ;D Hello Kevin,

Just a follow up.  I tried the Muradic acid this morning for just a couple of minutes, what a great idea.    I cleaned a 4 foot section of track in just a couple of seconds, this is going to save me days of cleaning.  I checked the resistance with my meter and there is a big difference between the tarnished and acid cleaned track.  I figure with me cleaning, and my wife washing, we should be able to do all of the track in a couple of hours at most.  Thank you again, and I will be carefull.

David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Paul W. on March 27, 2007, 04:50:10 PM
Kevin,
Thanks for that tip as well, I would have never thought of that.

David,
Go to San Val trains and look on their webpage, or get an issue of Garden Railways Magazine, the cleaner is always in their add. No tools needed, just attach to the underside of a two axle car and you're ready to clean. Comes with some extra pads as well.


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 28, 2007, 07:38:41 AM
Good Morning Paul,

And thanks for the help.  I went to that site yesterday right after reading your suggestion.  I do believe that the cleaning block is on my list of 'I wants'.   It just sounds too simple to pass up.  But, wouldn't it fit into the 'don't sand your track' catagory?

Thanks again,
David ::)


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: John B on March 28, 2007, 08:51:03 AM
David,

What type of trains are you going to run, steam or diesel?  What type of power are you considering?


John


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Lee Carlson on March 28, 2007, 01:43:53 PM
A goodly portion of my mainline, like the EBT, is 2.5-2.6%.  I can run
some pretty good trains with this maximum gradient.



Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 28, 2007, 05:41:59 PM
Hey John,

Right now my running gear is a LBG starter set (72324) that has a steam locomotive (2-4-0) with tender and 2 short passenger cars.  I really like the steam age and would like to get a better locomotive as time goes by.  I figured i could get up and running with this, and see what it going on.  I did purchase some used track and a MRC Power G transformer, to gie me more than a circle to run on.

What do you mean, what kind of power?  For now, I would say staight DC, if that is what you are asking.

And Lee, thanks for the info on your mainline, I am going to try my best to stay at 2% until I get something stronger to pull with.

David



Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Paul W. on March 28, 2007, 07:37:50 PM
Hi David,
Actually the cleaning pad is not sandpaper at all, they are scotchbright pads. They actually polish the rail heads I believe. But with anything, after continued use, they will wear out, that's why they give you extras with the block. So instead of cutting grooves in your rails (as with sandpaper), you are just polishing it clean.


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 28, 2007, 10:04:36 PM
Paul,

Thank you very much for the explanation, that is definately on my 'want' list.  As soon as I'm up and running, I will go shopping.

Thanks again,

David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: John B on March 29, 2007, 11:35:07 AM
David,

There are several different ways to go with the power; straight DC, Radio control, battery powered, and DCC.  I have gone the DCC route myself.   I have a basic system and am considering upgrading it to the NCE system.

If you’re looking for a good engine, Bachmann’s 2-8-0 Connie can be had at a reasonable price.  The 38 ton Shay is good too.  I have both along with the new porter which all have been converted to DCC.  I also have two 4-4-0 Big Haulers, an Indy and a Climax. 

John


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Chris R on March 29, 2007, 03:41:05 PM
I'm pretty sure that one must always pour ACID INTO WATER, never the other way around, because the reaction can cause a small explosion, sending chemicals everywhere.  I'm not sure, but someone will have to verify this.


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Lee Carlson on March 29, 2007, 04:34:59 PM
Right!  Acid into water, not the other way.
High school freshman science.


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: devious56 on March 29, 2007, 08:06:05 PM
Hey John,

Quite a stable of horses you have.  I wouldn't mind having a shay, but think I will stay with what I have for a while.  At least until I get some track down and a little running time on what I have.  I would like to go to DCC some time down the road also, just so I could run a couple of trains at the same time.

And Chris and Lee, thank you very much for reminding me about the acid into water rule, I had forgotten all about that.  Maybe this weekend I wil be able to clean that track and start laying track.

You guys have a nice weekend, the weather here in Florida is supposed to be great!

David


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: wade on April 04, 2007, 04:00:55 PM
Dave,
 I 'happened by' this thread and thought I would offer my experience. I have been modeling HO and On30 recently but in the 90s I worked with G outside. Good conductivity from one rail to anouther was a problem I had after a few years of weathering. For power I ran several leads out to keep the power up but eventually had to use dielectric grease in the joints which really did the trick. Could anyone tell me the latested methods , that is if they have changed? At that time I was using Aristacraft track. Ofcoarse soddering is likely the best. Good luck and welcome to G scale.
 Wade


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: John B on April 05, 2007, 08:29:13 AM
Wade,

Stainless Steel track and Rail Clamps work great.  I also have track power wired in at several spots, about every 15 feet or so.

John


Title: Re: resonable grade for incline
Post by: Paul W. on April 06, 2007, 08:25:46 AM
I agree with John, rail clamps! However many garden layouts run all brass track with no problems. I have two close friends both with over 800 feet of track that are running brass with track power. Once again the Briteblok cleaning pad keeps both railroads running smooth.