Model Railway Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi!
As someone who is very new to model railways may I ask a very basic question in my first forum posting? My track is laid out upon GaugeMaster ballasting. I have now decided to modify the board and install a hinged access. How easy will it be to align the tracks over the two gaps whilst at the same time retaining the ballast? I’ve read various articles regarding aligning track e.g using copper cladding, and soldering the track to screws, at the edge of the board. Unfortunately, no mention of the above ballasting. Looks as though I might have to pin/glue the track in place. (The 2 links mentioned in the topic “Help with Hinged Flaps” are no longer available.) Any thoughts?

Also, what about the wiring between the tracks? Is there a way of avoiding having to fix long lengths of wire onto the ‘lift-up’ section of the hinged board. I have this feeling that when the board is lifted I’ll end up tripping over the wires and pulling everything apart!

Thanks for whatever suggestions that you are able to provide. They will certainly much appreciated!
 

·
In depth idiot
Joined
·
7,710 Posts
Welcome!

Cannot help with the ballasting, as I don't know this product. If you are going to have a lifting flap, then everything on it needs to be
firmly attached.

Alternative suggestion. I was about to build in a lifting access bridge to future proof my layout for older age use; at present it relies on a
'duck-under'. But I am avoiding that, by instead using a wheelchair to 'scoot' under. We got the one I plan to use for our elders, very
cheap at a disability centre, an NHS chuck out because it had no parking brakes and was thus not of the required standard. (We bought
a better one for our elders too, having discovered by experience that the lack of a parking brake can be trying, because the real world
has gradients and people already wobbly on their feet have a profound liking for stable support.)

If you are set on a lifting flap:

The hinge centre line needs to be centred slightly above rail top.
Build flap, lay track across and fix down, cut through rails,
Rail ends soldered to the heads of brass screws is a good plan for long term robustness.
Don't have trailing wires to power the flap rails. Brass slide bolt to lock the flap in position and make the electrical connection between
the rest of the layout and the flap. (Easiest with DC common return or DCC power bus.)
You can go further and use a second sliding bolt toisolate the rails leading to the gaping void, to avoid a train plunging off the edge.

All the best and keep asking questions!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Many thanks, 34C, for your response...very useful!

I have already fitted a sliding bolt to the flap; could you elaborate as to how this could be used to complete the wiring over the hatch? Electrics is not my strongest subject, I’m afraid!

The use of a wheelchair to “scoot” under the board is quite original...to say the least! I’ll bear it in mind for the future! 😀

Thanks again.

P.S. The link to GaugeMaster Ballast Underlay is here: https://www.gaugemasterretail.com/magento/g...ster-gm211.html
 

·
In depth idiot
Joined
·
7,710 Posts
The working principle is very simple.

The sliding bolt is used as an interlocking switch. When engaged in the metal collar the flap is secured in the correct running position. An
electrical connection to one of the rails on the flap is made via the bolt to the collar and can only occur when the flap is secured in the
running position. (Your choice of where bolt and collar go, my preference bolt on fixed side, collar on flap.)

Further elaboration, isolating electrical supply to the layout. Route the supply to the layout through the first bolt. Install a second slide
bolt securing the flap closed, and take the rail supply through this and connect to the remainder of the layout. Either bolt withdrawn cuts
power to the layout, no chance of anything going over the edge, or running into the raised flap.

What about power to the other rail on the flap? You have permanent connections in the form of the hinges, so make those connections
through the hinges. No wires flapping about.

It does cost a little money because what is required for best results are brass bolts and hinges, for their superior conductivity. To do this
with just two bolts if there is more than one track crossing the flap requires use of either DC wired common return, or DCC.

The isolation can all be done with sensors and electronics, but those will not solve the problem of reliable rail alignment, may as well use
the necessary physical components for that, that's value engineering.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,308 Posts
If you type this into Google or Bing
lifting sections for model rail

you will get lots of answers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,080 Posts
Yes that article is mine I am morairamike as well as railstimulator. That flap is till in one piece and alignment is still spot on.
Power to the flap is from the board it is hinged on. Connecting wire is 305 mm long so not tripped over.
Fixed board connection is by 9 way D type plug and socket.
Connection to flap via a terminal block to facilitate removal if required.
Not on cork but is now on Gaugemaster pre-ballasted foam.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
617 Posts
Hi Having a bit of time on my hands I got the layout I was building for my grandson this was in four boards so that it could be stowed .When I put it together I found there had been some shrinkage being a double track the outside was ok but the inside was a bout half a mil out does not sound much but enough to cause something to derail . It has been a while since I last did any work on it and I had not treated or painted it and I believe this is why there was shrinkage. I have since rebuilt two of the four boards an fixed them permanently . In future I would not have any moveable boards of any type but that's just my view best thing to do is research and more research Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
335 Posts
I had a lot of grief with a lifting section with door hinges mounted on blocks set above the baseboard surface. They worked loose. Eventually I replaced them with car bonnet hinges. They are less than 1/2" wide looking down on them and screwed to the baseboard sides they are going nowhere. I have since realised wall paper table hinges would have been entirely adequate.
For electrics I have the power lead running across the hinge line at right angles to the track, it twists along its axis and more or less stays put as the flap lifts. It can be disconnected through a Aircraft multipin plug from something like a Gloster Meteror, but any multipin should do as it has not been disconnected for about 20 years. The power to the far side goes along the floor from one baseboard to the other in mains trunking.
To keep ballast in place is awkward. For the rail ends at the gap I use long brass screws screwed deep into the baseboard framing with the Peco Code 100 N/S rails soldered to them. The last sleeper is cut away but a dummy sleeper is strung between the screws with a dummy sleeper end. To ballast it make sure you can leave the flap down for several hours jam two pieces of plastic sheet in the join and apply ballast in the usual way. Hopefully when you do lift the flap the plastic will separate neatly leaving the ballast with a neat cut. the plastic will remain stuck to the ballast but you can either try to separate it or just trim round the edges to match the ballast profile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
174 Posts
Hi bring the track wires in from the hinge side if your layout is dcc you only need two wires,make sure the flap is up when you fix your wires .Is the door opening in or out,it should be opening out for h&s best of luck Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
625 Posts
I've built 2 hinged sections for our 4 track continuous club layout.

They are both approx 33" long, 1 has 5 0 gauge tracks (4 main & 1 branch) and 1 n/g (0-16.5),
this has laser cut sides to create a 4 arch viaduct.

The other has the 4 main tracks with plated arch girders, while the n/g is on a box girder section,
they lift as one, joined by the end plates.

I used flat mount cupboard door hinges (B&Q) which lift them just past the right angle, meaning
they stay up on their own (but I added self-locking catches for safety). The hinges are fitted under
the sections.

The other end rests on the combined leg support (like a shelf), and is guided in by slightly tapered
wooden guides. This means that it is kept in alignment in the two important planes (up/down and
left/right) by its own weight, leaving in/out to allow for expansion.

All tracks are located by the brass screw method (88 of them!), and the wiring is looped under the
hinge area (with plugs if the section needs removing).

The important bit is that there are 2 h/d micro-switches (ex motorised 3-port heating valves) built
in to the lifting end, which go to a relay set that cut the power to approx 3' of track either side of
the 'bridges', this gives good protection for members locos!
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top