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Well solid. If there was ever a change of plan from OO to G1 the structure would be more than adequate.

One question that crossed my mind was where does the wiring go? Is there a plan for an open top plastic conduit or some other system to keep it tidy yet easily accessible? Have you thought about a wiring diagram and a wire labelling system? Nothing like having it all identiified so that a few years after construction a modification you might choose to make does not involve hours of tracking down 'the right wires'.

Now, the points, their motors and all that jazz. You can lay the track including points on top, and add and connect up the motors from underneath. Or you can think ahead, and make the baseboard top areas where point networks ae to go as removeable panels. Then you may work comfortably from either side of the panels to install and test the points, motors etc., on a temporary workbench arrangement within your model railway facility, during the construction phase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Change of scale is very unlikely - the repercussions from the other half just aren't worth contemplating.

I have a colour coding system worked out for the layout and a master plan which I plan to update as I install the labelled cables. I did contemplate laying track and wiring each board individually, then I could remove it from the framing and even place it upside down for all the soldering of droppers and point motor fitting but that would mean breaking the main bus wires at each board joint which I don't think is a good idea - unless any one else had had experience to the contrary? Having removable panels for points is something I hadn't considered but given the ease of installing DCC Concepts Cobalt IP motors I am not sure if I will just end up creating myself more work.

Once all the steelwork is complete and I have all the OSB 3 on-site and cut to size, the plan is then to cover it all with brown paper and transfer the AnyRail plan to this and check for problem areas. I have tried to identify where points will be in terms of frame supports and board joints but I am sure to have missed some and will have to revise the track plan (I want to try and avoid butchering steel).
 

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***Hello Dave

Re breaking the bus - it can be OK or not depending on how you do it, but the convenience is really worth pursuing to avoid having to work under the boards.

One solution that is easy to do and works well is to use RCA connectors with use of their connections slightly modified.

Get 2 socket RCA panels and fix them at board ends (you can usually get them quite cheaply at electronics parts suppliers). They are usually conveniently coloured with red and black terminals to assist consistent use.

Solder the bus to BOTH terminals of each individual socket connector so that both the RCA cable shield and core wire are effectively used to carry power. This gives them good load carrying ability.

Buy short (300mm or so are commonly available) two way (usually red and black) pre-made RCA leads which are also usually quite low cost. Use these to link the boards.

That way you can have easy to use colour coded removable links with little effort and good results.

regards

Richard
 

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Hello Dave,
Looks a fantastic project, I hope one day to emulate you but, in Greece!
I doubt I'll ever have that kind of space though as property in Greece seems ridiculously expensive, how does it compare in Spain please?
I concour with Richard above btw, that's pretty much how I carried my bus over/through my lift up section on my old layout.
Cheers,
John.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Hi.

Thanks for the replies/comments.

Allegheny1600: Property where we live in Spain is quite cheap really as it's not a tourist area. The house was originally single storey but with a tin roof. We took the opportunity when we replaced the roof with a sandwich panel/insulated roof to raise the walls a little doubling the space so along with an extra guest bedroom with lounge I also got a big model railway room. As always though, it's never big enough.

Richard: Thanks for the ideas I am following it up. Really must try and get up to Seattle next time I am in the UK and see the new premises. Although the list of DCC Concepts products on my shopping list may make it a bit expensive. Just opened one of the boxes I have had stuff stored in since moving to Spain to find 3 boxes of 12 Cobalt IP point motors so that should keep me going for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Just thought I would add a quick update but without pics for now.

My hope was to have all the steelwork finished by the end of September and all the boards cut and placed on top but best laid plans and all that. Whilst using a chop saw to make the wooden feet had an accident and sliced chunks off my left index finger. OK off to the hospital sorted along with antibiotics so minor issue except for the massive adverse reaction to the antibiotics which put me in hospital for four weeks and and extended recover time until Christmas. So updates are going to be slow in coming until the new year. There was me thinking my other hobby, long distance motorcycle touring, was the dangerous pastime!

Anyway a question if anyone can help. I have the standard cork sheets to cut for under the track on the scenic section no problem. I also have a load of the 2mm insulation that goes under laminate flooring left over - would that be suitable for using under the track on the hidden sections, won't be in direct sunlight or anything?
 

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Sorry to hear about your misfortune and get well soon. I took a scalpol to the finger recently, Model Railways have their dangers.

I have for years used high density foam for sound proofing and I am aware of others who have used the floor insulation you mention. So long as it is low fluff and doesn't crumble to dust you should be fine I would have thought.

Simon
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Well still in recovery from the adverse reaction to the penicillin but making a bit of progress. I had hoped to have all the framework completed by the end of September but that wasn't to be. Now about 80% complete. The slopes to the lower level on both the extreme left and right hand sides are in and ready for track laying once the DCC Concepts Powerbase arrives. Anyway here are a few fics showing progress.






I have had to be very careful during the frame construction to ensure the framing doesn't clash with any of the points. In most instances I could move the framing slightly but in some instances I have had to go back and adjust the track plan. I will post a revised plan once I have finished the frame work although I am not envisaging any more major changes.

Hopefully by the next update all the boards will be in place and I can actually start some track laying!
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Ok so not massive amounts of progress unfortunately but nearly all steel work now complete and most of the boards cut and laid on top. I still have some plumbing to do at the end by the windows so the connecting pieces between left, centre and tight had legs will have to wait a couple of weeks, My wife has just been to the UK and picked up various goodies I had ordered and had delivered to my brothers. This included a number of packs of DCC Concepts Powerbase plates which I intend to install on all inclines. As you can see on one half of the layout I have laid paper sections where track will go so I can better visualise the layout.

So my intention now is to lay the track on the inclines that are tight up against both the left and right hand walls which allow trains to descend/ascend from the northern fiddle yard located under the centre section. Once this has been done and some testing has taken place I will start work on the boards on the main scenic level.









Comments, questions or suggestions all gratetfully received.
 

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Now, with a room that size I would maybe consider moving my layout inside. There looks to be plenty of stuff going on to hold interest. Look forward to watching this develop. Residing in Murcia you wouldn't have similar problems to me today. My layout is covered in 2" of snow.
Good luck and have fun
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
I do feel very lucky having the amount of indoor space I have. Minimum temperatures up there are about 10 C which is a bit cold for working in but not like trying to do anything outside in the snow. I have a pellet burner in the room which just needs the chimney finishing and then I have heat - it does mean cutting a whole in the ridge of the new metal roof which will mean climbing up on the roof to do it. The bigger problem here is the high summer temperatures. It got up to 30 C up there during the summer which is a bit warm. It also means I am going to be very carefull about leaving gaps in the track when I lay it, depending on what time of year I am doing it.
 

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QUOTE (DaveH_Murcia @ 13 Dec 2017, 05:20) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Minimum temperatures up there are about 10 C which is a bit cold for working in but not like trying to do anything outside.

We have a similar temperature range here although the temperature in my railway room does not normally get colder than15C in winter although it can and does get a lot colder outside. In summer it can be up to 40C and has been in the low to mid 30's recently. I tend to lay track when the temperature is in the low to mid 20,s (which it is today 23c) and have rarely experienced any problem
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Been a few months since my last update on my project. Another medical issue with a set of ladders collapsing on me caused some delays but back on the case now. I have concentrated on track in the non-scenic areas to start with especially as the main fiddle yard is underneath the central scenic section. Anyway the track laid in both fiddle yards with droppers soldered to every piece of track no matter how small. On the central fiddle yard, all the points have motors (Gaugemaster PM20) connected to DCC Concepts ADS8FX controllers. I have also taken delivery of my Digitrax Evolution controller and Digikiejs DR4088 detection system and are currently in the process of installing these. The pic is of the central fiddle yard which shuld be able to store about 40 trains. I think another couple of weeks should see the fiddle yard completed and ready for testing. I do have one issue with detection blocks where the entrance and exit from the fiddle yard have to cross but a bit of trial and error should sort that. I am getting through the bus wire for connecting droppers together, especially on the detection side, at an alarming rate - must get some more on order.

A pic of the central fiddle yard.



Be nice to see a train running this year!
 

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Hi Dave,
Ouch! Sounds painful and dangerous.
I just had a similar experience where I was on top of a short stepladder on my decking and one of the decking planks gave way. I was lucky, just fell flat on my back and didn't hit anything. A bit of soreness for a couple of days and I was fine, how did you fare? Shakes you up, doesn't it?
Good to see it didn't stop you, anyway. I hope you're fully recovered now.
Take care bud,
John.
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
Hi John,

As luck would have it four days in hospital in January with a fractured bone and internal bleeding near my left ear not to mention the various external cuts on the back and right side of my head where I hit the pellet burner and floor. All is nearly back to normal other than a dizziness at certain head angles which can make soldering under the baseboards a bit of challenge.

On a more cheery note I have to say, don't no who put me on to it, but Plasti Dip liquid electrical tape is proving a very worthwhile investment. I thought it was a bit expensive at first but it makes covering up solder joints so much easier. Who Knows how many joints I have left to do. I worked it out this afternoon that at a minimum I have 90+ detection zones in the central area, 45+ on the left hand side (with the other fiddle yard) and 25+ on the right side. I did say I wanted a challenge!
 

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Hi Dave,
I'm sorry to read that, mate. Hope the dizziness disappears shortly. A salutary lesson to us all, I think - really do be extra careful on ladders.
How did you get on with the hospital over there, please? Do you get reciprocal care via the NHS or use insurance?
Only my wife and I are considering a move to Greece in due course and this kind of thing is a concern to us.
Cheers,
John.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
Hi. The medical system over here is great. As I am not yet old enough to draw my state pension you don't get NHS cover. For the first year we relied on the ehic card but for that you have to be a UK resident really and it's only emergency cover. Private insurance is expensive but many areas of Spain have the option to buy in to their national health service. So it costs us each € 60 / month irrespective of any existing conditions. Before Brexit reared it's ugly head, we would have automatically got our health paid for by the UK government when we reached retirement age but who knows now. Could be worse, nice weather most of the year, cheap living in general and generally nice locals who put up with our poor Spanish.

Anyway great progress over the last couple of days. Now just got two track detection sections to complete then the main fiddle yard wiring is complete and I can actually start running trains and testing it out before starting on the other fiddle yard. Unfortunately I will have to wait for Hattons to get more PM20 point motors and get them out to me before I can do that
 

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Thanks, Dave.
That's interesting, I must find out if Greece has a similar system to be able to 'buy in'. However, it doesn't look too good over there from our experience. Wifey had a little bump in the hire car a few years ago and we were not impressed by the Greek health service hospitals! Local friends use private so that may be the way to go.
Similar to Spain, mostly really nice weather, great food & scenery, smashing locals and all very relaxed. We've accumulated many months there now so not a flash in the pan.

Anyway, best wishes for your continued recovery and fingers crossed for the first running trains.
Cheers,
John.
 
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