Saturday, March 19, 2011

Work Session

OK, Dick pointed out that my updates are coming about once a month, and I need to do more than that...

Of course, progress hasn't been much quicker. Chris, Dick, Pete and Pieter came by for a work session several weeks ago. The plan was to get as much of the Whiting Street Yard done as possible. Chris and I worked on turnouts, and Dick and Pete (replaced by Pieter in the afternoon) worked on the fascia.

So, after the day of work, and learning a lot about how to run a work session, Chris and I finished one turnout. Dick and Pete and Pieter completed the fascia (which looked great). But after Chris and I worked on the turnout all day, we found that there were a lot of things that we wanted to change in the process. It took a while because I was presumably showing him how I was building turnouts, but I also did a lot of managing, finding requested supplies, etc.

Anyway, we were having a lot of issues with the turnout staying together during assembly. Gluing it has worked fine for me in general, but there is quite a bit of handling while building it, and this was the first time I was using CA entirely. But the biggest issue was that we cut the actuating wire just a little too short. Since this is soldered to the bottom of the throwbar, it is difficult to replace. So the measurement is pretty precise, and critical. Because the wire was too short, the Caboose ground throw was extended fully, including the spring. It didn't have enough throw to push the points all the way over.

So...we learned quite a bit, but it meant we needed to go back and revisit the approach I had been planning on for a couple of years now. My initial thought is that it might be easier to scrap the CV turnouts and go with Micro Engineering turnouts for the entire layout. Not an inexpensive proposition, particularly because I already have the supplies for the CV turnouts. It also doesn't address the usual shortcomings in appearance with commercial turnouts.

Next update - Chris and I see if we can figure out what we're doing wrong...

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