So it was back to a normal Friday this week, with an early mark obtained from work and I decided to bite the bullet and scratch build another dual gauge diverging track to separate narrow gauge from standard gauge at northern end of Clapham Yard, just outside Loco Pilly. So that was finished just a few minutes into the first half of Friday's televised football match on and the test runs with bogies going through the track while it was on the kitchen table were all OK.
Saturday was a right off as I had to go the AGM at the Club.
Today was when the real action started. I started off by building a multi-gauge test track for the Club. It will house HO standard gauge (16.5mm), HO narrow gauge (12mm) and N scale (9mm). It will consist of 4 rails and it will be installed in the Clubhouse and be connected to one of our two SPROGs and it will be used to test and program DCC Locos in the Club office. So far the track has been assembled with 3 of the four rails attached. I will get around to adding the fourth rail during the week or next week.
My next task was to get a few items out so I remember to take them next weekend. I am doing some modelling at the Modelling the Railways of Queensland Convention next Saturday. I then turned to one of the models that I was going to take along to display next weekend. This is my Murwillumbah Cement Silo structure. It needed a couple of touch ups done with paint. I followed a technique that Arthur Hayes spoke about in his modelling talks and it worked out quite well. It was emptying a few shots from a spray can into a small cup and then using a paint brush to put that paint onto the model.
The next task was to cut up some fencing from Tulle to be installed around the perimeter of the structure. The tulle fencing had been spray painted grey many weeks ago now. The various lengths had been stuck to my white board in the shed with a magnet to let them hang and dry. Well they are truly dry after many weeks passing. I have left one section of the cement silo's perimeter unfenced, as this will be under construction by some sub-contractors when the structure finally hits the layout. Although I did cut the fencing to complete the final section, I rolled up the wire into a roll and left it leaning against the fence posts.
After this, I hit the shed and installed the new dual gauge piece of track that I built on Friday. This went into just north of Clapham Yard. I then gave it a test with both standard gauge and narrow gauge rollingstock and locos. It appears to work, although there was short at one point, but a few slides with a file through all the sleepers seemed to fix that issue. The only down side of this new track installation, is that the whole track from Loco Pilly to Dutton Park and around to Fisherman Islands had to be ripped up and relayed. The reason, is that after the installation of this new piece of track, the third rail on the dual gauge has changed sides. It was on the right hand side heading towards Dutton Park. It is now on the left hand side. Luckily most of these changes are quite easy to do. I just lift up the various lengths of flex track and turn them around. I had previously created my own lengths of flex track based on standard code 100 flex, with a length of code 83 rail soldered to one side via PC board lengths. So four or five lengths of flex track later and the track was relayed all the way to Dutton Park. I also had to remove power jumpers and re-attach these to the track.
The next issue was how to change the point located at Dutton Park? I found a right hand curve point that already had a third rail already added to the left hand side of the point in my spares box. I think I had just removed it from Clapham Yard last week or the week before. I filed the standard gauge rail slightly so the narrow gauge track can go through it better and a quick test proved that it seemed to work well. So that has been installed, and I just have to add another 6 inches of flex track to the left fork that heads toward Park Road Siding and that will be all fixed. I hope to do that on Tuesday evening before my visitors come over.
I will then hopefully get around to laying the last two lengths of dual gauge track from Dutton Park towards Fisherman Islands. Again hopefully I will get that completed by Sunday morning. That will make the whole layout operational again.
I will have to have a bit of a clean up as my layout is the location for Tuesday Night’s get together, and it is also the destination of one of the open layouts following the Modelling the Railways of Queensland Convention next Sunday afternoon.
Next week we might have some photos of the convention and the newly relayed trackwork.