Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Discuss the prototype and how to model it.
Knuckles
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Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:26 pm

Hello guys, I'm new to all this but a few of you I have got to know. I have decided to transfer some of my stuff from the thread 'Warm Welcome Indeed! n00b and Model Examples' and continue it in seperate threads, this way things will be organised better. Previous work on track building experiments and plenty of other stuff can be found there but seeing as I have finally moved on from the 100% new guy, to actually making a start, I thought it'd be best to do this. I'm still a new guy, still hardly know what I'm doing but having a go anyway, after this Exactoscale turnout I'm going to have a go at C&L's Timber Tracks B6. :D

LINK: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1690

Building the Exactoscale C10 LH Turnout Kit, first attempt at a P4 turnout, or any turnout for that matter
Modified from the other thread:

I didn't have a smaller point kit at the Warley exhabition so I was given a C10 instead, no biggy (..big-gy? Meh) so I have started it, however, I have come to a serious problem so if anyone knows the best way of contact I'd be appreciative. An email with these pictures probably.

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Exactoscale P4 C10-LH Turnout Kit

Started by taping the template above the work area so I can refer to it. No need to build the track on this as there are pips to locate chairs.

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Instructions reccomened blue-tack to hold the 3 sections of timbering down, so once I de-flashed them I did so with White Teck. Same thing really.

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The crossing V or frog comes in one section so that was a relief, however, at one angle it looks slightly bent and I am unsure if this is the case or not. Being a n00b I'm just going for it anyway, if I come to a problem I'll have to deal with it then. (Something else happened instead, see below)

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I decided to do this as best as the instructions say. I know with experience you find better ways but as it's a first I'm doing my best to copy them sheep style.

One thing that's hard is the different chair types. They arn't that learly labled in my opinion and it took me ages identifying them.

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Crossing V finished with chairs. One problem is I needed to get a chair in the middle of the left bit and ended up just making a 'lump' of plastic to fit in. There was no way I was able to get it to just 'drop in' as I think the instructions were saying.

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Middle sleeper shows the 'lump' substitute.

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Timber 40, (1 before the end) shows how the previus picture should look with the chair in the middle of the two rails. Quite a difference but I wasn't prepared to unglue the whole assembly just for that. Interestingly the two outer chairs here are the wrong type, I used C chairs instead of E chairs becasue I could not find them for toffee. Visually there is hardly any difference and you get a few spares in the pack.

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Chairing the straight closure rail, making sure to put past mistakes into practice. Make sure the rail is the correct way up, make sure the keys are facing the correct way with correct bolt configuration, and make sure the one closest the fishplate points the other way. Also make sure the 3 different chairs are the right way too. A bit of faffing needed to be sure.

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Finished both straight and curved, the curved was slightly bent by hand and eye before putting chairs on, and I also haven't glued all the chairs in position on the curved one because instructions said not to; I'm guessing it's for accurate gauging later but don't know.

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The inside of one of the fishplates snapped off so I just glued it in poition, hopefully it won't be a problem.

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And now we have the mother of all cock ups, a cock up with which progress is most definently halted until Exactoscale sort me out. Will have to send an email with photographic proof soon.

Must have been a friday kit this, "Hurry up Larry I want to go home"

Chocolate tea pot this...

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What am I supposed to do with those? I'm not explaining the mistake, it's quite obvious. :P


After 2 months I finally managed to get the blade problem sorted out and progress has continued.

I fixed the blades in position as per the instructions, constantly checking with standard 18.83mm gauges in relation to the stock rails, I used a few different types as I seem to like doing to be sure.
Image

Looking here you will see there are no fishplates, that is because I kept breaking them, and then later I realised 'how' I was supposed to remove the switch assembily away from the main structure (as per instructions), as a result I decided to leave them off until later. I did do a few dry runs 'coupling' it together and 'uncoupling' and it worked fine until the fishplates broke...again...new ones! Oh, broke again! Might be a good idea to buy a lot of them. Another thing I want you to see in this picture is the large uneven gaps between the rails. They still slide through so I can tweak them but the problem is I can't seem to get them even in relation to each other. Unsure why. I've also hacked the sleepers a tad to give some damage effect. Looks like a hungry mouse has been around. :)
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Maybe this is the reason I can't seeem to get the aforementioned rail gaps even. Looking at the top middle rail where the closure rails start (extreem left part of the V-Frog) you should see the rail gaps here arn't even either, furthermore the lengths of the extreem ends seem to be, at a guess 0-6mm's or so different. If these are supposed to be even then this would explain the problem. I'm unsure if they are supposed to be even but if so then a bit of bastardisation with a file should cure it.
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Looking here, if you look close and especially if you zoom in you may see the switch assembily doesn't meet up to perfectly with the main body. The guage is what I'm talking about. I read somewhere that it's sometimes a good idea to have gauge widening here but I just went for standard (being my 1st kit), I think there is a chance it narrowed somewhat upon glue drying becasue it is a tad tight. The gauges still fit but you have to put them in with a bit of pressure, without doubt a friction fit bordering on a jam. However, C&L's flexible P4 track on a straight is a tighter gauge than this so I guess I can relax, if you have any tips on tweaking or smoothing the transition I'm all ears.
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Spot the glaring error! :? Seriously I'm kicking myself becasue there is little to be done now.
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Throughout the construction of this kit I've been vigilant on the key positioning, noting every one on the drawing and patting myself on the back for learning from past mistakes on my track construction tests. Well, I can say goodbuy to that Golden Rail Chair trophy now can't I? :(

Getting the chairs on the check rail and the stock rail was a bit of a game but not too hard. I filed the check rail ends to make chair insertion easier (essential a lot of the time with any rail it seems, without doing so you often unwittingly break chairs, this results in you launch them with a well placed expletive, or in my case chew them as a punishment for not working properly, blame the object, not the worker! Any excuse.) I made sure I gauged the stock rail from the point of the V first, seeing as that is a critical area. Once happy I did the ones adjacent.
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General impression. My little truck experiment wouldn't run without derailing in the middle but after adding a guage as a weight it has gave 100% reliable running through what I have constructed so far, so that's a confidence boost and a first step in getting something running, kind of. :) Next is to do the straight stock rail and check rail, and find/decide a way to join the blades. Is it really that 'bad' to have a fixed non pivoting join? The blades are very flexible.
Image

Any comments, suggesstions so far? :)
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John Donnelly
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby John Donnelly » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:04 pm

Nice to see another 'novice' at work - I just built my first turnout (a B6) from a C&L kit last week...

John

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grovenor-2685
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby grovenor-2685 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:03 pm

I used C chairs instead of E chairs becasue I could not find them for toffee. Visually there is hardly any difference and you get a few spares in the pack.

Not really surprising that they look the same, the B, C, D and E chairs should be identical so far as the outside pieces are concerned, the only difference is in the wedge shaped piece that fits between the converging rails.

Next is to do the straight stock rail and check rail, and find/decide a way to join the blades. Is it really that 'bad' to have a fixed non pivoting join? The blades are very flexible.

Not 'bad' at all, in fact that is the way you are supposed to do it, the blades should move by flexing in the section over the slide chairs, they should be held firmly at the heel end, definately no pivot.

So its all looking like a good first effort so far.

Maybe this is the reason I can't seeem to get the aforementioned rail gaps even. Looking at the top middle rail where the closure rails start (extreem left part of the V-Frog) you should see the rail gaps here arn't even either, furthermore the lengths of the extreem ends seem to be, at a guess 0-6mm's or so different.

As I have always built my own rather than using kits and thus cut my rails to length and any discrepancy is my fault, I am not sure just how accurate P4 Track Co kits are with their lengths. From the photos it looks like your straight closure is a tad longer than the curved closure, I would expect them to be the other way round. measure them carefully and use the longer of the two for the curved rail, then if there is still a slight mismatch just shorten the longer one to fit, should just be a few file strokes.
Regards
Keith

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Flymo748
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Flymo748 » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:12 pm

Knuckles wrote:Any comments, suggesstions so far? :)


Nice work, looking as though it is coming together well.

You hit exactly the right solution in adding some weight to your test vehicle. Physics doesn't scale, so a "bare" chassis won't run anything like on a model the way that one would on the full size thing.

Has anyone mentioned to you about weighting stock? The general rule of thumb is to aim for 25g per axle. That's not gospel, and not always practical, but it's probably what most people use and it works...

Keep it up - looking forward to more updates.

Cheers
Flymo
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Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:21 pm

Thanks for the comments guys, as always I will endever to take as much of it on board as I can remember. I refer to these threads quite often too.

I read about the 25g's in the digest sheets and as such am looking for a cheap micro set of scales that I can keep on my desk, that way when I continue that wagon and more I won't have to keep going into the kitchen!
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craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:41 pm

iKea does a decent enough round digital scales you can stick stock on. It zeros if you need to put a longer bit of wood on top before weighing too..

Note that if you ever do track from scratch its then better to start from the straighter stock rail and gauge the crossing and then the other rail. You can then take the stock rails through the switch section and do the closures last.

With Exactoscale turnouts I personally like to replace the 'A' chair timber with a copperclad one with pins on top to solder the stock rails, wing rails and check rails to to ensure nothings moves relative to each other later on. Once laid though a bit of glue on the check rails will probably achieve the same thing tbh..

Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Wed Apr 25, 2012 6:54 pm

Ok, new update. Apart from the stretcher bars and TOU (took me months to find out what that meant) and the need to add the fshplates to the removable section again, it is pretty much complete. Both my test trucks run through it fine, one is that sprung cattle wagon in progress and the other is a Hornby 'Thomas Tank' truck with the wheels swapped for pinpoint axle P4, that's currently it, not even inserted cup bearings yet and as result the wheels don't spin perfectly on one pivot, the bob kind of, so if that goes through anything will! *Should.*

There is only one mini issue, when wheels (and some gauges) get to that 'pinching apex' just before the V-frog they sometimes want to ride up in the air a teeny weeny bit, but never actually derail, as a result when I push the wagon through very slowly it will slow down there. Any way to rectify this mini quibble? It may be ok because nothing has actually came off and it's relatively a smooth roll through, but I'm nit picking.
I must now commend Exactoscale for designing such a well thought out kit, it went together fairly easily (not without minor challenge!) and I think I've done a fairly acceptable job being my 1st turnout in P4, any gauge/scale for that matter. :mrgreen: If there is anybody newer than me to P4 (and believe me, I really am a n00b) then I reccomend these as a starting point, (no pun) many others say likewise.

I think I may need help with stretcher bar information - pro's, con's to the various systems. I haven't a clue here but I want to do a deicent job for possible future use of this turnout.

Image
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Appologies for the overt yellow lighting, always the same in the evening under my lamp.

Once I've sorted the stretcher bars (help) next up is that C&L Timber Tracks B6 kit. :)
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John Donnelly
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby John Donnelly » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:01 pm

Looks good - be interested to see what you think of the C&L kit...

John

craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:23 pm

That large roller gauge should always be a bit tight rolling through stuff, wheels however should have no issues and something like a steam loco/6-wheel vehicle could have issues.

Check the wheelsets all in the b2b gauge you have. If its not that then its possible that the wing rails on the Exactoscale crossing assembly have bent in towards the nose, i.e the etch has bent a little so the pinch point as you put it is narrower than it should be. I tend to test that area with the gauge that is basically just a flat piece of metal 0.68mm thick which you can run through this nose area for both track directions. If it has issues sliding through then this is possibly the issue.

If you got the pack of 4 gauges then hopefully you have one of these. Wheelrights do a round gauge with a hole in the middle but I prefer the long rectangle Brook Smith one.

Hth ready for the next one.

Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:35 pm

Hi Craig, I brought those gauges you just mentioned a while ago. it is a bit tight so what you have described might just be it. It goes through but it doesn't like it and upon moving it back out the whole crossing slid an inch through the chairs! A tad tight then. How am I supposed to alleviate this? Everythings already built. I could gently pair the metal away and thin the rail, this could cure it but I don't like the idea as it's a good example of a bodge (I do a lot of that but would rather refrain if possible here).

Bugger. :(
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Mike Garwood
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Mike Garwood » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:50 pm

Fear not gentle Knuckles...Boots the chemist have the remedy for this. First find the ladies nail section, then look for a nail file that's a similar width to the 0.68 (it's about 2 inches long). There will be one - as that's where I got mine from, it's just a question of looking.
Insert said file and GENTLY move back and forth until the flat fits without the sticking that you describe. That's what I've been doing with our layout and this works fine.

Mike

Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:57 pm

I'll try that Mike, thanks. :)

I'll let you know how it goes once I get it/them.
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Mark Tatlow
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Mark Tatlow » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:15 pm

Knuckles,

One thing that I feel that I have discovered about the P4 Track Co turnouts is that the switches tend to be assembled a bit too close together (so they are undergauged).

I think this happens as they are unsupperted in chairs for quite a long distance and thus when the guage is inserted it tends to slightly flex these out a touch, so they tend to get assembled too close together. I note you are using the P4 Track Co guages, I get around this by using the "1 bar" guage, which is 0.1mm larger than guage.
Mark Tatlow

craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:48 pm

I'd prefer the removal of the A and B chairs with a sharp scalpel and a refitting tbh to Mike's method. It may be possible to lift the assemly slightly then flattening off the etch and increasing width at the knuckles. If you do another one or have a fully assembled crossing in the C+L kit then check with that gauge before you lay the crossing.

Parts sliding in the chairs is why I did the copperclad sleeper mod I mentioned. My crossing did what I describe at caterpillar out of alignment while sat on my WB, you'd managed a more brutal way to get the same result!

Its all good practice and also why I sold my wagon chassis in pairs ie you get the spares to gain at least one finished properly ;).

wally

Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby wally » Wed Apr 25, 2012 10:03 pm

Reading the whole saga through again I noticed that you mentioned that the crossing assembly seemed to be "a bit bent" but carried on regardless, this may be the problem if all of the rail head surfaces are not in the same plane.

Try a straight edge along the tops of the rails to check they are all to a constant level, if there is rise on the approach to the crossing gap this will be the problem.

H T H,

Wally

craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Thu Apr 26, 2012 1:21 am

Wally - i'd expect them to go down towards the knuckles as the outer rail ends would rise if the halves of the knuckles were closer together?

Stretcher bars I did on Monday at the club. Exactoscale TOU under the board and you can just see the tops of the tubes and the pivot wires coming up to the blades. Next to these wires we have brass ears soldered to the switch rail and twisted round onto either side of a 0.3mm thick double sided copperclad fiberboard stretcher bar done in the prototype fashion and gapped twice on either side staggered.

Ideally I need to represent the prototype insulation for track circuiting as we have on the soleplate under the toes of the switches.

Thsi system gives you the two prototype stretchers (3 for a C I believe) that flex correctly but also the underboard robustness of the Exactoscale system. Pain to fit in situ as these ones were though!
craigwelsh-stretcher_bars-1.jpg
Stretcher bars on Slattocks


craigwelsh-stretcher_bars-2.jpg
Stretcher bars on Slattocks


Now I just need to fit a slightly more robust wire to the Tortoise as the blades aren't sitting home firmly enough due to the friction of the stretchers under the rail. There is a benefit to that though in that its stopping the blades rising more easily than the Exactoscale system along. Incidentally if you do read the Exactoscale instructions for their TOU you need to drill the holes for the tubes further apart than recommended...

The holes in the baseboard were somewhat excessive and will need a cover piece with a thin slot for the tubes to move in.

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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby DougN » Thu Apr 26, 2012 2:53 am

Craig, where dis you get the 0.3mm Copper clad. I am trying to chase some up for the same use here in Australia but I can't find a supplier. Where in the UK did you get it from? I recall at Scaleforum last year I think C&L had some sheets on their stand or some one along those lines?
Doug
Still not doing enough modelling

craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:52 am

DougN wrote:Craig, where dis you get the 0.3mm Copper clad. I am trying to chase some up for the same use here in Australia but I can't find a supplier. Where in the UK did you get it from? I recall at Scaleforum last year I think C&L had some sheets on their stand or some one along those lines?

Im afraid I didn't buy it but someone on rmweb who worked in a company cutting the stuff gave it to me when i'd asked him for some other bits.

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David B
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby David B » Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:15 am

We have a business near us which makes PCBs and a contact can occasionally get some offcuts they are disposing of. You will have to ask around!

David

40C
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby 40C » Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:27 am

I have some 0.25mm double sided copper clad sheet bought from Finney and Smith. Might be worth contacting them?

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grovenor-2685
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby grovenor-2685 » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:01 pm

And if you buy Ambis (Alan Austin) or Masokits (Mike Clark) etched tie bars then the bits of PCB are supplied.
Regards
Keith

craig_whilding
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby craig_whilding » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:23 pm

grovenor-2685 wrote:And if you buy Ambis (Alan Austin) or Masokits (Mike Clark) etched tie bars then the bits of PCB are supplied.
Regards
Keith

I don't like the Masokits ones now as personally I think the etch folding over both sides of them makes them too stiff. The Ambis simple ones sound to be closer to my solution from talking to users of them so i'd recommend buying some of them if people want the etch and pcb bit off the shelf.

As ever make such you have a multimeter ready to test the copperclad is gapped correctly on both sides before you fit it!

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randallb
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby randallb » Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:52 pm

Craig,

I really like the colour you've achieved on your sleepers and rail sides - what stain / paints did you use to get it? :)
Randall

Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:51 pm

Could somebody please explain to me the difference between functional and non-functional stretcher-bars? To me it's just a fixed bit of metal at 2 points eith in or out the design of the prototype. That's all I think I know.

I don't know what I am to do as there is so much choice and I'm not sure about the method of operation I will use when I do my next layout so can't really plan ahead.

I like the look of the Masokits ones though, more realistic than C&L's bars. (in the B6 point kit I'm to do soon)
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Knuckles
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Re: Knuckles's Turnout Construction Log

Postby Knuckles » Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:02 am

As well as the above, I've about sorted the turnout problem at the 'pinch point' as I call it. (when I remmeber the correct terminoloy I'll start using it)

Basically having looked extreemly closely and watching the wheels go through slowly with the shunting finger I've deduced the problem.

This picture illustrates the problem, it is a slightly exaggerated and crude edit but you will get the idea.

Image

they were made slightly offset from eachother, so with files and glass paper I tweaked it. Was worried that it might open things up too much but my 2 wagons went through it both ways a lot happier so I think that bodge worked!
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