Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-1971

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Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:01 pm

....no more gluing Simon...the track will be maintained by droppers which pass through silcon tube bushes in the ballast/cork/aluminium sheet deck...the only new adhesive will bond a fine denier mesh of the twixt sleepers ballasting to just the sleepers...the only physical hold which the baseframe has on the track will be the droppers.

Dave

Terry Bendall
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Terry Bendall » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:11 am

Tor Giffard wrote:the only physical hold which the baseframe has on the track will be the droppers.


It will be interesting to see what happens in hot conditions. With an aluminium top to the baseboards which may well expend and contract, and with rail of a different material with a different rate of expansion things could get interesting. What works on a test board over a short length of time may not be suitable in the long term. It would be a shame to get all the track for such a large layout put down and then find after a year or three that things start going wrong.

Still its your train set etc. :)

Personally after 42 years of working in P4 I prefer to stay with tried and tested techniques which have been prooved to work. Last week we got Ravencroft Sidings out to check it over for the Uckfield show. It is all Exactoscale track with steel rails glued to cork and ballasted with granite chips. No problems at all with the track - a couple of droppers which failed and a little discolouration where some droppers were soldered to the rail. A quick clean of the rails and we were off. The layout has been stored in my workshop which is a timber building in the garden and subject to the usual extreems of temperature.

Works for me. :)

Terry Bendall

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 17, 2014 8:19 am

Mornin' Terry,

All materials expand and contract to a greater and lesser degree in heat & cold. The advantage with metal (aluminium) is that it is predictable and elastic. Working in the conservatory helps with the life test conditions because the daily temperature range is wider than anywhere else in the house and any potential issues are therefore accelerated. It may be that there is less/no more need for concern with my approach than with any other layout construction method but time will tell. Given how many badly built, warped wooden constructions are out there, I'm actually fairly confident about the standard of running on this layout.

Dave
Last edited by Tor Giffard on Wed Oct 29, 2014 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Will L
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Will L » Fri Oct 17, 2014 8:36 am

Aluminium base boards are an interesting concept and I'm sure we are all wishing Dave well with it. It did occurred to me to have a look at the relevant coefficients of liner expansion and it seems Dave will see some effects that we are currently not used to. Wood generally seems to expand less than nickel/steel(which are similar) and these expand less than aluminium. So while most of us have had the experience of track gaps closing up in hot weather, Dave is going to find his getting wider, but may run in to gap closure problems when a frost sets in.

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 17, 2014 8:54 am

Hi Will,

....that is why there will be no hard/inflexible connection between the aluminium and track. The silicon tubing should cushion the track from any changes in the aluminium, which after all, is a uniform sheet i.e. any expansion/contraction should be the same in all parts. The biggest concern which I have currently is the behaviour of the Evo-Stik bonding the cork to the aluminium over time...I've heard that it becomes more brittle as it ages, which is another reason for avoiding bonding the track to the cork.

Test frame progress.

Now that the Titebond has dried I've had the levelling/averaging sledge at work on the ballasted surface.

The first lesson is to carry out one thin, even application of glue across the entire surface and sprinkle one even application of ballast. The perils of running out of glue part way across include the overlap area (once more glue arrives) with glue on top of ballast/double thicknesses of ballast which can then produce this result once the levelling sledge gets to work on the surface. The repair is easy enough but the situation is best avoided.
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120 grade sandpaper on the sledge is about right for ensuring that a good/flat surface is produced. Any ballast which is sanded off is then put back into the shaker for next time
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The faint line across the lower part of the picture indicates where the glue ran out with the first experiment and a double thickness of ballast resulted...again easily avoided by having plentiful stocks of glue and ballast before starting. The repair involves another application of glue/ballast along the edge of the frame and levelling it again with the sledge
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....a similar issue here with some oversanding required to level the surface
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The perils of applying the glue too thickly...the dry glue appears like this at any high spots, after levelling has been done
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Dave

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Andy W
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Andy W » Fri Oct 17, 2014 11:27 am

Maybe I've missed something here, but I can't quite grasp why you are aiming for absolute evenness and flatness - nothing in the real world is like that. Great to see you experimenting though, interesting stuff.
Make Worcestershire great again.
Build a wall along the Herefordshire border and make them pay for it.

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 17, 2014 11:35 am

Aft'noon E,

This is just the first experiment for a junction test build, hence the larger flatter area. The next experiment will be using the same technique across diverging tracks with ballast only under the tracks.

Dave

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 24, 2014 5:01 pm

Evenin' all,

More work done on the layout today has seen the levelling/averaging sledge finishing the job across the ballasted surface....60 grade course sandpaper strips are now on the flip side of the glass to the 120 grade strips, giving a quick solution to any situations requiring heavy duty sanding but retaining the ability to quickly switch to a more gentle option. The 4ft x 2ft polycarbonate sheet upon which the first trackwork will be built has been machine screwed to the test frame and a couple of experimental holes drilled using the modellers drill press to trial the brass ento pin/silicon tube pairing...more drill bits ordered in uncommon diameters in the search for a better fit. A few experiments to come re n/s fittings to provide a strong joint when soldering the ento pin droppers to the underside of the rail. Longer turnout timber strips ordered from C&L to fit the requirements of the Templot diagrams.

Dave

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Tue Oct 28, 2014 4:38 pm

Aft'noon all,

Having had a read of Mr Rice's 'Finescale Track' book re creating crossing vee's I headed down to the local timber merchant for a few 1ft x 1ft squares of 3/4 inch MDF on which to trial the making of several crossing vee jigs for the layout....1:10 and 1:10.5 are the main vee angles needed for the test track build. He quickly sliced the MDF pieces and I came away with 6 for £5. Once home I ensured that there were no raised edges to them and sprayed the first with 3M Photo Mount before smoothing down an A4 piece of fine graph paper. Once a 1:10 rato had been marked on the paper I used more Photo Mount to bond 2 lengths of straight ply sleeper strips to the paper to act as a jig for the first crossing vee

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The smaller sheets of sandpaper work less well on the levelling sledge and have been removed
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A decorators scraper with razor blade is ideal for removing the double sided sticky tape/sandpaper from the glass...leaving a residue which is easily removed with a sponge scourer dipped in bathroom cleaning fluid
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Checking for flatness across the pre-ballasted test frame is easily done with this 1m stainless rule secured to a similar length spirit level to keep it straight
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Dave

Simon Glidewell

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Simon Glidewell » Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:50 pm

Keep up the good work Dave; looking forward to seeing some points being built...

All the best
Simon

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Tue Oct 28, 2014 6:18 pm

...me too Simon...gathering together the various components/tools etc has taken long enough.

Dave

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:06 pm

John Palmer wrote:
Tor Giffard wrote:What kind of digital still camera is required for good quality close up work?

Dave

How much do you want to spend, Dave?

If you want to make a big thing of photography, you could splash out on a DSLR and equip it with whatever specialised lenses you need. The DSLR body may cost several hundred pounds before you start adding in the cost of lenses, etc.

Having struggled to get shots from which I could decent enlargements on an elderly Olympus Mu, I recently decided to get a new camera having a reasonable macro capability. I did so with the specific intention of using this to reveal the shortcomings in my model making that ought to be made good. I ended up getting a Fuji X10, the main reasons for my choice being its large sensor and 1cm macro capability. I paid about £225 for mine, which is about £140 less than the price of the newer model, the X20. Didn't think the enhancements incorporated into the X20 justified the extra cost.

I am a complete tyro at photography, but I'm encouraged by the results I've been getting from the X10. It is, however, by no means the cheapest of cameras and you might well get results that are acceptable to you from a camera costing half as much.


Sorry John I must have missed this post whilst replying to another. I have my dads Lumix on loan just now and apart from needing the battery replacing, it seems to be doing fine. When he asks for it to be returned I'll probably get something similar.

Rgds

Dave

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Thu Oct 30, 2014 6:16 pm

Aft'noon all,

This afternoons conservatory session has involved joining together pairs of C&L thick plastic turnout timbers to suit the length requirements of the Templot diagram. A spot of superglue to the end of one sleeper whilst holding the two against a metal straight edge, on a glass surface has resulted in enough long timbers for the first part of the construction. The section of the test track with ply sleepers will just make use of the longer ply sections which are available.
I've bonded a couple of C&L plastic chairs to ply and plastic sleepers using Evo Stik to test being able to slice between the chair and sleeper in case there is a need to reposition chairs at any point due to creep. One of the stated shortcomings of using plastic sleepers is being unable to reposition chairs once glued if creep occurs. Whereas superglue sets very hard and would resist being sliced, Evo-Stik is more easily cut with a knife/scalpel.
Once the ordered 2.5mm drill bits arrive for creating the holes through the polycarbonate/aluminium baseframe deck then work with the droppers can start.

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Dave

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jim s-w
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby jim s-w » Fri Oct 31, 2014 1:02 am

Why haven't you used a glue intended for plastic Dave? Superglue isn't ideal and evo stick tends to eat into plastic over several years. There's a right tool for the job and it's not either.

It seems like every stage of your project you are abandoning tried and tested methods and techniques for no good reason. You seem to have made everything really really difficult for yourself.

HTH

Jim

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:14 am

Mornin' Jim,

You seem to need a little training in constructive posting approaches. Feel free to add comments such as butanone would be best in this situation or beware of the long term consequences of using Evo-Stik on plastic but kindly refrain from the know all, put down approach that seems to be your calling card.

I have experience in some areas of modelling but not in others, therefore some misguided techniques will appear amongst the experiments that I'm using on this TEST track whilst I negotiate my chosen learning curves.

Having studied the images of your latest layout and noted the sagging/uneven trackbed beneath the 08 and wagons on page 1, apparently due to insufficient support/poor quality baseboard construction, I think that you need to re-read the applicable "tried and tested techniques" before giving others the benefit of your clearly limited experience.

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=3805 is the link for those wishing to examine Jim's baseboard construction techniques.

Dave
Last edited by Tor Giffard on Fri Oct 31, 2014 4:59 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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jim s-w
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby jim s-w » Fri Oct 31, 2014 9:55 am

Hi Dave

I'm not the only one to ask something like this and yet you launch into an attack on me for it and try to belittle what I'm doing. (i have made it VERY clear that BR is a test build, a plaything) At no point have I said what I think you should do so your "know it all" comment is completely unjustified, I merely hinted that there's been thousands of layouts built using similar approaches and you seem intent on ignoring everything that's gone before for no apparent reason. Maybe you do know better but i stand by my observation that every stage of the process seems to be really convoluted and difficult because of it.

I'm sorry for any offence and I will refrain from commenting or asking any questions in the future.

Sorry

Jim
Last edited by jim s-w on Fri Oct 31, 2014 3:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.

andrew jukes
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby andrew jukes » Fri Oct 31, 2014 12:37 pm

Dave wrote
This afternoons conservatory session has involved joining together pairs of C&L thick plastic turnout timbers to suit the length requirements of the Templot diagram. A spot of superglue to the end of one sleeper whilst holding the two against a metal straight edge, on a glass surface has resulted in enough long timbers for the first part of the construction.....
I've bonded a couple of C&L plastic chairs to ply and plastic sleepers using Evo Stik to test being able to slice between the chair and sleeper in case there is a need to reposition chairs at any point due to creep. One of the stated shortcomings of using plastic sleepers is being unable to reposition chairs once glued if creep occurs. Whereas superglue sets very hard and would resist being sliced, Evo-Stik is more easily cut with a knife/scalpel.

I will try to be helpful and constructive!

Using new techniques is fine (how else do we progress?) but it is worth being sure that the motive is not to avoid problems which are widely assumed but which may be non-existent or trivial. For example, how much experience do you know of of solvent welded chairs 'creeping' out of position? Have you actually tried to correct a mis-positioned solvent-welded chair? Some time ago I posted a series of pictures on re-working a switch assembly on an Exactoscale turnout - it does involve destroying the chair(s) and (ideally) sliding new chairs in from the end of the rail but if it is simply one or two chairs some way from a railend I would scrape away the old chair residue and solvent weld two half chairs in place instead. If the misplaced chairs are trying to hold the rail in a position it doesn't want to be in - that's a bigger problem. Track is always best laid with the rails carefully shaped so there is no lateral force required from the chairs.

Incidentally, I would expect 'creep' with Evostick to be more likely so it'll be interesting to hear what your experience is.

The other surprise is that you need to extend turnout timbers much at all. Products like the C&L (Exactoscale) set of timbers, part no. E4XX PCT0 should meet this need. If you do need to extend plastic timbers, then I would recommend a clean butt joint with a strip of very thin plasticard underneath to keep the two sections in line while the solvent does its stuff.

Hope that does help

Andrew Jukes

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 31, 2014 12:57 pm

Hi Andrew,

I already have the longer plastic sleeper C&L product to which you refer on order but the conversation with Pete yesterday included suggestions of bonding two sleepers together and positioning the joint beneath a chair, hence, me having a go.

As for creep and the potential need to re-position a chair, I'm simply paying heed to the experiences of others with chairs firmly bonded to plastic sleepers and experimenting with options. From what I've heard of the 'over time' effect of Evo Stik on plastic I'm unlikely to adopt this combination anyway.

Pre-shaping, aligning rails to avoid lateral forces is high on my priority list already and will be the subject of a few more experiments.

This is my first experience with track building components and I'm enjoying checking out the possibilities with some hands on practice. Reading suggested techniques is fine but I learn at least as much from practical experiences.

Many thanks for any tips.

Dave

JFS
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby JFS » Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:45 pm

Hello David,

I find myself in agreement with Jim and Andrew - nothing wrong with experimenting but better I think to report on the outcome of an experiment - AFTER it has been completed (ie given plenty of time) rather than to describe the doing of it. Equally, experimentation is one-thing but wheel reinvention is another. I wonder why you don't float your ideas before you try them? From the posts above, it is clear that there is plenty of experience which could have saved you from a few blind alleys.

As one who previously mentioned that plastic sleepers and plastic chairs are hard to part (in MRJ apart from anywhere else) I feel very guilty now that I have sent you off down a completely blind alley - had you asked, I would have been happy to share how I dealt with the issue - a solution which does NOT involve Evo-Stick - an abomination which I would not have within a light year of track work - because I learned of its faults 35 years ago.

My fear in all of this is that a beginner might stumble across this thread and take some of the statements within it as "gospel", rather than as experimental musings. I know this to be a real issue since I have had a personal message exchange with another modeller who is trying his hand at P4 track and was throw into something of a panic by something he read here.

It is free country (well actually it used to be) and you may post whatever you wish, but I think a suitable health warning is essential. When you and I discussed this in person, I recall mentioning that the issue with track is that we have to live with what we create for the life of the layout and things which work on day one might prove a disaster five years down the line. For my first layout, I did what the experts advised and the mistakes were all mine. Only after 45 years, do I feel half competent to push the envelope myself. And I wrote about it ONLY after the track had been in use for five years (a mere blink of an eye in the life span of some P4 layouts!).

Good luck, but please take care,

PS. I tried ballast under my track once only and never again - with Triang Series 4 and that was 50 years ago...

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Paul Townsend
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Paul Townsend » Fri Oct 31, 2014 10:09 pm

Tor Giffard wrote:
I have my dads Lumix on loan just now
Dave


I bought a Lumix early this year in part because the lens adaptor to old Pentax mount is only £15.
I am very happy with the camera and have good macro facility with old and thus free kit.

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Fri Oct 31, 2014 10:27 pm

Thank you Howard,

I am guilty of carelessly using the speed of e-forums to short cut some learning curves by provoking reactions, without responsible consideration of the effects on the potential audience. I will modify future postings accordingly by asking for suggested products....might it be a good idea to have an easily accessible list of Society recommended products and their uses to facilitate quick reference, or does this already exist? Can you advise of your recommended route to bonding plastic chairs to plastic sleepers?

I am curious as to the difference between a very flat/level area of small grain ballast and any other very flat/level surface....it is that boundary which I'm exploring.

Thanks for the Lumix recommendation Paul...they appear quite suitable for our purposes here.

Dave

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Sat Nov 01, 2014 4:03 pm

Aft'noon all,

The second package of turnout timbers arrived from C&L today, including the longer, thick type which would hopefully be adequate for the Templot diagram. Unfortunately, several of the longest sleeper locations will still require butt jointing of two C&L ones...this has been done using Butanone. Various other sleeper positions had to have the longest single C&L sleeper positioned to cover all chair locations and then have a cosmetic extension added at each end.

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The longest turnout timber (right) in C&L pack 4TT101B is somewhat shorter than the longest in C&L pack E4XX PCTO
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The neatest drill holes for the dropper/silicon tube assembly were achieved once the base of the modellers drillstand had been modified. The fit is marginally loose but I have a source of 2.3mm twistdrills which may yet be ideal
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A few test drillings for the dropper/silicon tube locations revealed an issue with the hollow base of the modellers drillstand allowing swarf to get between the Templot diagram and the polycarbonate. Adding a plasticard section within the base has eliminated the problem.
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Dave

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John McAleely
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby John McAleely » Sun Nov 02, 2014 10:13 am

Following discussions with jim-s-w/Jim and Tor Giffard/Dave, I've removed a section from this thread that covered a personal disagreement. So that the thread now makes sense, I have removed a couple of comments which made observations on the disagreement. I'm keen to see this thread remain (in the long run) as a document of Dave's experiments with Tor Giffard.

Some will note I've not entirely sanitised this thread. I don't think entirely removing disagreement, or the words chosen by each party, is desirable for a discussion forum.

I will unlock it shortly.

Tor Giffard

Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Tor Giffard » Sun Nov 02, 2014 8:01 pm

....thank you John...I'll try and do full justice to your confidence in this thread.

Dave

Alan Turner
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Re: Tor Giffard (TG) former LSWR routes of North Devon 1951-

Postby Alan Turner » Sun Nov 02, 2014 10:37 pm

Tor Giffard wrote:Aft'noon all,

The second package of turnout timbers arrived from C&L today, including the longer, thick type which would hopefully be adequate for the Templot diagram. Unfortunately, several of the longest sleeper locations will still require butt jointing of two C&L ones...this has been done using Butanone. Various other sleeper positions had to have the longest single C&L sleeper positioned to cover all chair locations and then have a cosmetic extension added at each end.

P1100707.JPG


P1100709.JPG


The longest turnout timber (right) in C&L pack 4TT101B is somewhat shorter than the longest in C&L pack E4XX PCTO
P1100712.JPG


The neatest drill holes for the dropper/silicon tube assembly were achieved once the base of the modellers drillstand had been modified. The fit is marginally loose but I have a source of 2.3mm twistdrills which may yet be ideal
P1100708.JPG



A few test drillings for the dropper/silicon tube locations revealed an issue with the hollow base of the modellers drillstand allowing swarf to get between the Templot diagram and the polycarbonate. Adding a plasticard section within the base has eliminated the problem.
P1100705.JPG



Dave


The reason why your timbers are apparently too short is that quite simply the real railway would never use timbers of that length in that situation and certainly not that many. One or two in very special circumstances, which is not represented by your example, may be. Long timbers are very expensive and difficult to transport. If timbers have to be butted together then two smaller timbers would be "stapled" together with steel staples or bolted using steel plates. More usually the timbering would be designed to avoid long timbers. As for sticking bits on the end that is simply totally out of the question.

regards

Alan


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