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Archive for March, 2008

Tortoise installation completed!

March 13th, 2008

I’ve finally installed the last of my Tortoise motors on Intermodal module A. The last one involved a remote Tortoise mount…took longer than expected, and is more complicated than it looks! 40 steps on the instruction sheet…doesn’t seem like it would need so many steps, but there are a lot of little things to do that take a bit of time, most of it to do with alignment and wire bending…but at least I know how to do it now for next time!

Next to do is the installation of the Digitrax SE8C Signal Controller – that is a quick install – and the installation of the CML DAC10 turnout controller, including the connection of the Tortoise wiring.

In the meantime, here are the latest construction photos

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Yet another update…

March 6th, 2008

I’ve done a bit more work on the layout this evening. I have been working on Intermodal module A – I’ve finished off the wiring, including wiring the turnout frogs, and have installed one Tortoise motor…unfortunately I have run out of those now, so another trip to the local model shop is imminent – I need 3 more Tortoises for module A.

I also managed to put together the first building for Rochelle Intermodal, an engine shed for the intermodal yard GP38 switchers…

Engine shed for GP38 Obviously I still need to fill all the gaps, then paint and weather it, but it is a start! 🙂 One thing I realised I have to do is to straighten the switcher track – I had originally curved it very slightly, but with the engine shed there a curved track is obviously going to cause problems…

Tomorrow I will sort that track out and install the Digitrax SE8C under the module. Apart from that there is nothing more to do on this module until I get hold of the Tortoise motors, so those will only be installed next week. Once I have done that I can put both modules back up and fully test the wiring and Tortoise motors.

I am contemplating installing local LED’s recessed in the side panel to show the status of the turnouts, along with a basic track diagram for the particular location. Another option is to also add a switch so the Tortoises can be switched from the side panel as well as from the throttle. But still need to think a bit about that one…

Right, that is enough for tonight!

Be sure to look at the Photos page for the latest construction photos. More updates to come soon!

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Progress update and photos!

March 5th, 2008

Finally I have had the chance to upload some photos of the progress on Rochelle Intermodal! Click on the Photos link to view the latest photos.

Intermodal module B is now completely wired and is ready for scenery. Last night I finished off the soldering and installed the Tortoise motor (there is only one turnout on this module) . All the PowerPole connectors for power feeds between modules are wired up, along with the PowerPole connectors that carry the block detection wiring between intermodal module A and B (the block detector board, Digitrax BDL168, is on module A).

Tonight I will attempt to complete module A – at least I will get the wiring finished, but hopefully will be able to finish installing the turnout motors as well. I had to move the bus location slightly at the end of module B in order to install the Tortoise motor there, but that might not be possible on module A. I have a remote mounting kit for the Tortoise motor which I might have to use. At present I am not sure whether I will install motors on the yard tracks or find a method to switch them manually.

So, one board done and another almost done…the end modules (kindly donated by Jim Bainbridge – thanks Jim!!) need slight wiring alterations for the installation of block detection, but already have the PowerPole connectors in place for the power feeds.

I have successfully tested two signals on the main modules (intermodal modules A & B), and these work correctly, running off a JMRI PanelPro panel through the Digitrax BDL168 block detector and the Digitrax SE8C signal controller. Now all I need to do is finish installing the signals! I have been considering purchasing a few cantilever signal gantrys for the main tracks, as that will make signal installation a lot simpler, and will require less signals, as my main tracks are both bi-directional.

However, no rush for that as those can be installed at a later stage.

Right, back to work now…must earn some money to pay for all this!! 🙂

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