Monday, January 20, 2014

Fourth Power District is Now Complete

Over the weekend I completed wiring up PowerBus for Block 4.  So I now have 4 of my power districts connected to their power bus.  I still have a single block to complete - Block 3.  I think that is my longest block section.  I hope to have this wiring complete this following long weekend.  Besides sitting under the layout and wiring droppers from the track to the power bus, I did get around to doing a few other things.

I have cut a facia panel for the Acacia Ridge Blob on the top deck.  That will protect trains coming down the gradient from Clapham Yard around the 220 degree bend into Acacia Ridge Yard.  It will also make this area look a bit cleaner, as it was just bare frame and baseboard.

I am also looking at building a small through truss bridge to go over the road crossing just north of Lismore.  This will be a scratch build based on a similar model I have next to the Richmond River bridge near Cassino and two more on the Upper Richmond River at Kyogle.  I have put all the styrene shapes aside and will look at gluing that together this weekend while I watch the Aussies belt the Poms again in the cricket.

I also got around to completed the testing of the point control in Loco Pilly from the control panel.  I have a 3 way point in the loco area and I had the point motors throwing in reverse order in some situation when I needed both of them to throw.  It was just tidier to fix that up.  You just need to get the first point motor out of the way before you throw the second point motor.  It is obvious when you look at it.  I did have one of my commands in the Mini Panel code wrong.  I was setting the point to Normal when it should have been set to Reverse in two locations in the code.  That was easily fixed.
On Monday last week I posted my NCE radio equipment away to get upgraded to the latest version.  Well on Thursday and Friday the kit was returned.  You could not get better service from Marcus Ammann than that!  Thanks Marcus.  While I was happy with the performance of the old version, you can really notice the difference with the new version.  I am most impressed.  I must admit that I am yet to experience one o fthose Loco run aways where the speed step is set to the maximum for the current loco on the Procab-R screen.  This is easily fixed, but was annoying.  Touch wood - it will happen never again.
So now I have three radio throttles in my arsenal.  My old Procab-R now has an internal antenna.  My old Cab04PR also has an internal antenna and has the latest version of the radio software.  My Powercab was also upgraded to radio and is fitted with an internal antenna with the latest version of software.  I think I am now really spoilt. 
For those thinking about doing this sort of similar upgrade, I would certainly recommend it.  I would also suggest that any person out there that has a Powercab for their home layout, and then takes this to the Club layout on the weekend to run there as a Procab, I would suggest that you find out if the your Club has radio installed.  If so, upgrade you Powercab throttle to a Procab-R when used at the clubhouse.  I'll be suggesting that my Running Session crew to look at upgrading their Powercabs to a Procab-R.  It certainly saves trying to find a plug in point on someone's layout.  Also you never loose control of your loco like you do when a plug-in throttle as you move from one plug-in point to another.

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