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16  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Starting An Outdoor Railroad on: May 04, 2016, 11:04:19 AM
Rusty

If you doubt that engine wheels can't grind brass rail, here is a picture of a section of track that had an engine stuck on it for a while before the owner noticed that the train wasn't moving.



Chuck
17  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Starting An Outdoor Railroad on: May 04, 2016, 10:52:14 AM
Rusty


Working on 4' diameter curves and running on them for a long time are two very different things.  The tight 4' diameter curves add a lot of friction to the wheels.  This causes wear on the track, motor and gears.  In my opinion those curves are ideal for very short trains under a Christmas tree once a year.  Regular use will shorten the life of the engines and the track.

A friend of mine has a layout that contains a loop or 4' diameter curves, surrounded by loops with larger diameters.  He has to replace his curves every couple of years, because the wheels on the engine slowly grind down the railhead.  Metal wheels on the cars will add to the removal of rail. If you run  cars with plastic wheels, the flanges will gradually be worn away.

Here is a picture of his track.  Notice the inside edge of the rail head in inside the top of the rail joiner.  With time the gauge becomes to large and the rolling stock drops down between the rails.



My mainline is about 90' long,  It take about a minute to polish the track with the drywall sander and green ScotchBrite pad.

Chuck

Sorry, I made a  change to the original post, and rather than saving it, it got posted a second time.
18  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Starting An Outdoor Railroad on: May 04, 2016, 10:50:48 AM
Rusty

Working on 4' diameter curves and running on them for a long time are two very different things.  The tight 4' diameter curves add a lot of friction to the wheels.  This causes wear on the track, motor and gears.  In my opinion those curves are ideal for very short trains under a Christmas tree once a year.  Regular use will shorten the life of the engines and the track.

A friend of mine has a layout that contains a loop or 4' diameter curves, surrounded by loops with larger diameters.  He has to replace his curves every couple of years, because the wheels on the engine slowly grind down the railhead.  Metal wheels on the cars will add to the removal of rail. If you run  cars with plastic wheels, the flanges will gradually be worn away.

Here is a picture of his track.  Notice the inside edge of the rail head in inside the top of the rail joiner.



My mainline is about 90' long,  It take about a minute to polish the track with the drywall sander and green ScotchBrite pad.

Chuck
19  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Repaint Request (Rio Grande 4-6-0) on: May 04, 2016, 10:04:15 AM
Ted

If they don't offer new paint and lettering, I have a suggestion.

Many years ago when the original 4-6-0 Big Hauler came out I repainted it and added Denver and Rio Grande Western lettering and the Moffet logo to the tender with decals.  It is now a shelf queen, but I can spot it on a siding to add to a scene.



It started off with Santa Fe lettering.  

For the past 10 years or so I have been using Stan Cedarleaf to make my decals.  He has an extensive library of existing RR lettering and logos and he will also help with custom lettering and logos.  I have used him for both types of lettering and I am very pleased with the results.  These are not Stan's decals, only because the conversion took place long before he started making decals.

His website is as follows.

<www.cedarleafcustomdecals.com>

Chuck

20  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Starting An Outdoor Railroad on: May 04, 2016, 09:01:20 AM
PB

You don't say what scale(s) are you planning to run?

If you are going to run 1:22.5/24 trains, Bachmann BIG HAULER, classic LGB narrow gauge, Delton, etc., 8' diameter will be fine.  If you want to run 1:20.3 (Bachmann Spectrum) or 1:29 (models representing standard gauge prototypes) you will need a minimum of 10' diameter.  These larger cars and engines will look a lot better on larger curves.  I run trains in all three of the above scales and I wish I had put in larger curves.  My mainline curves are 10' diamter.  The 1:29 engines and rolling stock have a lot of overhang.

Overhang of 1:29 engine and passenger car on 10' diameter curve.



The recommendation that we all make when helping beginners, is to use the largest diameter curve that will fit into the space.  You will not regret going big.  Our trains tend to grow bigger in all the sunshine and fresh air.


1. How many square feet is a 1/4 circle of Bachmann's 8' curves?

See Foureyes comment above.


2. Is it ok to use Bachmann's 4' turnouts with stock that requires 8' radius curves?

Do you mean diameter or radius? 

No.  I am using LGB 18000 switches (15' diameter) on my layout.  Rolling stock designed for 8' diameter curves will in all likely hood derail going through the 4' diameter switches.
 
3. Should 3' straights or 1' straights be used for this project?

Yes, the longer the better

4. Would a 1 amp power supply be enough to power this railroad if only running 1 train?

It all depends.  A small engine with one motor, no lights, smoke or sound pulling a short train will probably work.  I'd recommend a minimum of 5 amps, 10 would be better.

5. Can the track be cleaned by hand, or would it be a good idea to invest in a track cleaning car?

I second the previous post.  I have used a drywall sander with a green ScotchBrite pad for over 30 years.  It is easy to use, quick, and inexpensive,

Here are some pictures of my setup for track cleaning.  Pictures were taken on my temporary layout in Arizona.











Keep asking questions.

Chuck
21  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Lights Out! on: April 21, 2016, 09:37:09 PM
Have you checked the battery in the failed car?  Take it out and put it in a car that seems to work properly.  If it is dead, then you have a short in the original car.  Get a multi meter and check the resistance in the good car and the car that seems to not work.  If they are different, you will have to trace the wires with the meter, one soldered connection to the next.  Not fun, but necessary.

Chuck
22  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Snow Plow Part on: April 20, 2016, 11:26:11 AM
If you can't find the real part, you could get a brass rod that just fits into the hole on the side of the boiler. Bend the it in two places so that it will fit into the hole on the boiler and the top of the plow. Cut off the excess and paint it black.  It won't be perfect, but it won't be too noticeable.

Remember, most of us use the"10' rule".  If you can't easily see it from 10' away, no one else will notice it.

What I'm suggesting would look similar to the wire hand rail connecting the boiler to the pilot on the LGB Mogul.  It is not perfect, but it might do until something better comes along.



Chuck

PS  I is a great engine, I love mine!



23  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: #7 Santa Fe Battery Op Loco on: March 26, 2016, 09:44:42 AM
Andrew

If you want to run both forward and reverse, you could put a DPDT (double pole double throw) toggle switch between the battery and the motor.  If the battery is in the tender, you could put the switch in the bottom of the tender.

Years ago I made a battery car with a DPDT switch and a old rheostat from my HO control panel.  The knob sticks out the end of the car, but it works. 

G-Scale graphics has some inexpensive remote (RC) controlers.  I don't have any of his controllers, but I have heard good things about them.  They are simple: on/off, speed, direction.

Chuck
24  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: #7 Santa Fe Battery Op Loco on: March 17, 2016, 10:14:46 PM
Andrew it has been years since I did anything with it other than look at it on a shelf.  The plastic drivers on mine have no way to send electrons to the motor.

You might be able to use it as a dummy, non powered unit in a double headed consist.  You might have to disconnect the motor to permit it to free wheel in a train.

Chuck
25  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: #7 Santa Fe Battery Op Loco on: March 17, 2016, 09:27:53 PM
Andrew


If my memory is correct, that is the first big hauler engine.  It has plastic wheels.  Battery is the only option.  It is version 1.  We are now at version 5 or higher.  Mine is a shelf queen.

Chuck
26  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: engine not moving on: February 28, 2016, 10:38:22 AM
Ted

Thanks for the comments.  It is a fun little project.  I will keep posting pictures as the occasions/events occur.

Right now the motor has died, so until I can get a new USAT motor it will be posing, not running.

Chuck
27  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: engine not moving on: February 26, 2016, 05:39:51 PM
Glad you got it going.  I know the feeling.  Last weekend my modified Delton Doozie/goose had the same problem.

I was a sleep (forgot to throw it) at the switch and it ran into the back of a passenger train in the station.  When I untangled it; the sound  and lights were working, but the motor wasn't.

Since I take this to run on other layouts, it was a crisis.  It has a battery and Revo, so I can run anywhere.

I took it to a friend and he found a connection in the motorblock was open.  I took it to him since he had made the modifications earlier.  It is now waddling down the track like a proper GOOSE.

I'm taking it down to southern Arizona, Sierra Vista, in early March for an informal get together.  Had Stan not gotten it working I would of had to take its picture for its travel log as a stationary object.

Here is a link to MLS for the travel log.

http://forums.mylargescale.com/11-public-forum/50050-travels-modified-delton-doozie.html

So far it has been to layouts in Arizona, Nebraska, Virginia, Maryland and Maine and an abandoned roadbed on Nantucket Island, Ma.  I hope to get it to Colorado later next month.

Chuck
28  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: engine not moving on: February 26, 2016, 02:36:13 PM
Can you hear if the engine motor is turning?  If it is you probably have a broken gear on the drive axle.  If you can't hear anything check all electrical connections from the power supply to the motor.  Do the lights work?

Chuck
29  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Question on Bachmann Large Scale Long Caboose on: February 03, 2016, 12:49:30 PM
Rusty

The five foot diameter curves (LGB R2) would fit in your space.  If you can even get 4 pieces and put a piece of 5' diameter curve at the beginning and end of each semicircle it would help.  The transition from the straight to the curve won't be as sharp.  The R2 curves are also 30 degrees, so they will not effect your circle.

My first garden layout was when we lived in Denver.  I had to terrace a slope on the side of the yard for the lower loop.  This involved building walls and cutting back into the slope.  At one end I had to use the LGB 5' diameter curves.  I had a siding of 4' d curves inside the 5'ers.  I did not have any problems with excessive wheel or track wear with the 5' d curves.  There is a really big difference in performance between the 4' and 5' diameter curves.   I could run  Moguls and Mallets without any problem.





Chuck

Forrest

Your idea of using a bent wire would also work.  I had thought of drilling two holes in the tongue and cutting the small end of a paperclip off and sticking the "U" into the holes and gluing them.  Anything to form a loop would work.

30  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Using Bachmann couplers on other makers trucks on: February 03, 2016, 12:43:11 PM
Bill

Thanks for the comments, glad to be able to help.

Chuck
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