2016 end of year UpdateA lot of detail and tuning has occurred over the last few months. I built car card boxes and developed operating runs and train orders. This resulted in another operating session with 6 colleagues and a number of lessons for improvement. We also now have some signals installed especially around Beauville. More mini LEDs were installed.
Mike Bartlett, the NMRA AP Director came in and on one occasion we built a “fifty cent industrial light”. With no preparation we completed it in about 20 minutes – and it worked!
Woops!!!!I converted all my 86 foot auto parts cars to body mounted couplers and added them to the layout. I purchased these from TrainWorks at the last N Scale convention for about $3.50 each – a bargain. The paint scheme was off so they were rejects!!
|AT&SF 86 foot auto parts cars|
|Staging tracks torn up to relay|
SignalsAt Beauville most of the switches are controlled by DPDT sliding switches. Hence the extra contacts on the DPDT switches are available to power the signals to indicate whether the switch is open or closed for the facing route.
|East Beauville Cantenary signal|
Mini LEDsThe caretaker’s cottage at the wind farm was an interesting project to use LEDs. There is one installed under the balcony roof, and I added an interior floor so I could light the second floor only.
The effect of the warm white lights is very good.
City Upgade:Work is progressing slowly in the city area. Some lights and signs have been added to the buildings. I still have the “Sexy scene” to install in JD’s Bar. That will take a keen eye to see.
|Leeville Central Station|
The city park has been completed. It has a children’s play area with slippery dip, swings and balance bar. There is a tennis court with players and a photographer.
Kaye’s Flour.Kayes Flour is a combination of a kit bashed Cornerstone model plus 25mm pipe and overhead buildings made from scraps. The siding was extended so it now is a line to pick up from “Mine Craft” storage.
Harley Freight Forwarding:This diorama now has lights for the yard.
|HJ Freight Forwarding|
Gleeville Church:Although not complete the church now has a series of grave stones and the fence is almost complete. I plan to add flowers to some of the graves and more detail in the yard.
Summit Gravel:The Summit Gravel office has interior light and a new “office” sign. The store room has an exterior light (mini LED)
|Summit Gravel Office and store|
Feather River:The single track through Feather River now has additional trees and shrubs. Boy it is amazing how many trees a layout can ‘swallow”. I must have close to 1,000 trees on the layout and could use many more.
|Feather River tracks|
Operations:I have slowly developed the operations run sheets and rules so that multiple operators can participate and run several trains, and assemble others. Initially I had run sheets but have developed car cards for almost all the cars on the layout. I also built card boxes for each key location with a simple: East, West, or Spot holder for the cards.
|Card Boxes at Summit|
|Run Sheets in A5 holder|
Our next operating session will potentially move to this format.
Also with a collector like me the staging tracks and yards are reasonably full of cars and trains. It is the old adage that you never have enough storage tracks on your layout. One colleague suggested a rule of thumb should be about 50% utilization of storage track to enable more movement of trains and I will try that as well next time we run a full operating session. Gee which trains will I have to remove?
OK there is a lot more I could have updated but this is the last update for 2016.
Next year I hope to have a full web page and an easier to navigate design. All the best.