Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Learning Curves

Taking a layout on the road for the first time is always going to show up little snags and so it proved at Woking.

There was nothing fundamental that stopped the layout operating - no phantom short circuit that required an on-the-spot rewire as some layouts have experienced - just some minor irritations like those devilish little pony wheels on an NGG16 derailing.

Getting these beasties back on the rails can be a maddening task - sometimes requiring Himself to don two pairs of specs - and it's not made any easier by those power units having such bulky, overhanging tanks and bunkers.

After much close observation - and tiresome re-railing - the problem was traced to one of the board joints in the middle which had moved out of alignment.

This was not due to an error in construction so much as the manner of construction.

Our boards, you see, were built sequentially, in a linear fashion, like most standard layouts, and the track joints were aligned longitudinally. But Bron Hebog is very unusual in having such depth and some of the boards towards the centre of the layout are connected laterally and well as length ways.

So when it was put together as one unit we discovered that the forces acting in all four directions for the first time pushed (or pulled) one of the joints slightly out of alignment. Enough to throw off those pesky little pony wheels - although everything else stayed on.

The other issue with the layout - which had been predicted from the outset of the project - is that there is a section of the track in the middle which is all but impossible to reach when it's all put up.

And guess where the dodgy board joint in question was??

Thus the otherwise simple task of getting out the soldering iron and resetting the joint forced Himself to contort his physique into positions no pensioner should ever attempt..

The other snagging point was one of the cow-catchers on the power units of our new NGG16 138 would brush the top of the rails where the track dips in Goat Tunnel causing a momentary short.

That should be easy to address by bending the brass parts upwards.

As for the dip we're just going to have to live with that because that can't be fixed without taking the top off the tunnel!

No comments:

Post a Comment