Sunday, July 26, 2015

Fisherman Islands Progress

On Tuesday afternoon this week I went down to Jaycar and purchased some wire for the track power bus to be used in the Fisherman Islands track section.  That night I went over to Arthur's place for our Tuesday Nighter's meeting and saw some very nice trains running.  Arthur even ran a some special trains (parallel runs) for the Queensland Rails 150 years celebration.

As I try to do almost every Friday, I came home from work early.  I went down to the shed and started work on the electronics for my level crossing detector.  I soldered a few things together.  Then I thought that I must try and find my level crossing flasher unit.  Well I went through all the places that I hide my electronics and you guessed it, I eventually found it.  I gave it a test and it still worked - Amazing - it must be over 20 years old.  I also found some other detector units that I did not know I had.  I also found about 4 relays that I did not know I had as well.  I could have incorporated these into my electronics build instead of buying some from Jaycar.

On Saturday I went back down to the shed and did a bit more on the electronics build.  I could not get my cheap delay relay working, so I gave up working on the electronics.  I then started to work on cutting holes in the baseboard at Fisherman Islands for the points motors at the throat into Fisherman Islands.  I cut out two point motor holes at that end.

I then went down to the other end of the yard and cut four more holes at that end.  So I currently have the three standard gauge tracks all laid.  I think I will have to look closely at one of my dual gauge points, as I think it will cause a short when wired up.  I will have to install some insulated rail joiners at the diverging end.  I think I will also have to cut some isolation slots in some of the rails and install some sort of switch to control the polarity of the frog area.  Once the track was laid, I ran my rake of ballast wagons through all the points and everything seemed to run well.  I also ran two of my narrow gauge stock through the dual gauge points and the narrow gauge points and they seem to be working well too.  It was then that I realised that the dual gauge headshunt did not have any track.  So I soldered up a length of dual gauge track and added that to the point.

Today before a party at our place, I installed the control panel for the Fisherman Islands throat on the layout.  I also ordered some push buttons required for the two control panels for Fisherman Islands.  I am also looking at where I can locate my Digitrax DS64, so I can power four of the five points at this end of the yard.  I will have to purchase an NCE Snap-It for the fifth point.  The point control for the far end of the yard will take quite some time to complete.

I had a look around to find out if I have any spare slots on the nearest NCE Mini Panel so I can hook the Control Panels up to.  I did some design of the control panels at each end of Fisherman Islands.  I need 14 push buttons, hence spare locations on an NCE Mini Panel.  Unfortunately, the nearest NCE Mini Panel has 12 free locations on it.  I could run two switches (and the common wire) to an alternate NCE Mini Panel, but the three wires required will need to run about 35 feet.  I don't think that will be an issue, but it is a fair distance.

This is the view of the far end of Fisherman Islands.  The first three tracks from the left are standard gauge.  The next is dual gauge and the far right is narrow gauge.

This is the entry into the throat at Fisherman Islands.  The narrow gauge and standard gauge split via a Tillig piece of track.

Finally I have uploaded the photos as promised.

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