Sunday, May 18, 2014

Bits and Pieces

On Wednesday I came home from work early so Kyle did not have to go to dancing with his sister.  So I made use of the time and went down to the shed and continued work on my next scenery area.  I had previously laid some ballast on the visible section of track.  I also had previously installed the telegraph posts from one side of the scene to the other and also incorporated some fence posts made from 0.060” styrene I beam and on Wednesday I installed the rest of the scene’s required posts.  I then weathered the track with my trusty brown marker.  It does come up fairly good when the ink dries on the rail.  I then went about looking at how I could make some tree stumps with tree roots that have been exposed by the flowing waters of the creek in the scene.  So I twisted up some wire and while it is yet to be soldered up and have no more gaps added, I think it is starting to look just right for my bare rooted trees for this scene.
I then went through my collection of trees that had I have had in varying states of completion in a shed cupboard or under my workbench and just plain laying on the layout.  I am trying to get motivated into completing these off.  I must have over thirty trees, way, way short of what I need to do justice to the layout.  Some need a coat of no-more-gaps, others a paint and they all need some greenery added.  I have been looking at where these trees could be placed on the layout in this scene that I’m currently working on.
Friday afternoon I made a trip over the local Hobby shop Austral Modelcraft and picked up some decoders and also picked up a cheap reasonable tree for $5. 
Saturday morning after soccer, while the boss went and had her shopping fix, I installed a decoder into an 80 class loco for a guy at the Club and also replaced the headlights with LED’s.  I then went back down to the shed for a few minutes and installed the tree that I purchased yesterday and three other similar trees that I had laying around.  I also am getting ready to install about 30 other cheapo trees that I purchased some time ago that were from the Hornby Skale Scenics range.  I have five packets of trees with about 100 trees in each packet.  I have four separate colours for these trees.  These are very small trees that can be incorporated around, under and beside some good solid type twisted wire trees in the scene. 
Later in the arvo after the boss came home, I travelled down Darren’s layout – Wattle Flat to meet up with a few crew and have a bit of a free for all running session.  I ran a train the whole way out and back from North Gulgong to Wattle Flat and return.  While at Wattle Flat, I swapped over the 9 or so wagons on my train for the 9 wagons at the various industries at Wattle Flat.  That is easier said than down and means that I have to move the guard's van from one end to the other.  Again this is a pretty tricky job - but very interesting and also time consuming.  It does take a fair amount of time, running from one end of the yard to other, pushing those wagons here and pulling those other ones there.  We had a great time.
Sunday I went to our Club’s Buy and Sell and sold a few bits and pieces and bought a few pieces of track for a mate (if he wants them) and a few sets of points for my layout.  I got a pair of medium radius Peco points (left and right) and a 3 way point.  The left hand point will go into Loco Pilly and allow that location to be completed, once the point motor is added.  The right hand point will go into Acacia Ridge Yard and allow some of my currently isolated sidings to be connected to the main line.  The three way point will be placed in Grafton Loco.  I had previously removed a three way point from there and used it in Loco Pilly so I could store some locos there and have this location operational and allow light engines to go between Loco Pilly and South Brisbane, and Loco Pilly and Clapham Yard.
On the way home from the Buy and Sell I popped in at my mate David’s place.  He has successfully wired in 9 x Digitrax DS64 quad point motor controllers in to control all the points for his main staging yard.  This yard is a single track in at each end and it expands out to be about 12 tracks wide – quite impressive, with both dead end tracks at each end and through tracks.  I showed David how to set the addresses of the DS64's, they start at 21 and go through to 56.  I did the first few and then David took over.  We then tested that they all threw the correct direction.  About half of the tests revealed that the point threw in the reverse direction when thrown.  That is easily fixed up.  There were about only 2 maybe three that did not throw properly.  So David now has some tasks until I’m next needed.  He has three NCE Mini Panels on order.  Two of these are for use in his staging yard, one for the east end and the other for the west end.
So this week has been a collection of lot of little bits and pieces.  Next weekend I will be travelling to Toowoomba on the Saturday and Sunday is a working bee at the kids school.  So not much time for the shed.


  1. Craig,
    Are you sure Toowoomba is next weekend.
    I'm booked in for the weekend after, May 31st. & June 1st.

  2. Jim, you are correct. It is two weeks till Toowoomba. I have a free day this Saturday.