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Re: [HOn3] 3% or 4%

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  • jeff reynolds
    ... Alan, After years of experimenting about what engines could pull how many cars up what grades, it came to this: maximum weighted C and K class
    Message 1 of 21 , Feb 28, 2006
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      >Alan wrote: "I am putting in some grades on my layout having trains
      >climbing in the
      >mountains. Is a 4% grade over a 8 ft area going to be to much for the
      >engines that are out there and the new Blackstone engines that are
      >coming. Any help on grades much appreciated."
      >Thanks
      >Alan Hartley
      >Springfield,MO.

      <SNIP>

      Alan,
      After years of experimenting about what engines could pull how many
      cars up what grades, it came to this:
      maximum weighted C and K class engines with micro motors and 6.3;1
      gearheads will pull the prototype number of cars from 0% grade up to
      a maximum of 3% grade. The car weights were finally settled at 1-1/4
      oz, total per 30 ft. freight car. A 34 ft. stock could be 1-1/3 oz.
      This was after years of juggling to get it right. Beyond 3%, the
      "proto-like" pulling falls off rapidly. I think it has to do with the
      defacto lack of tractive effort of the motive power. I got rid of any
      4% grades when I moved in '91. Notice how much lighter the car
      weights are than the NMRA standards. I cram just as much weight
      (cerobend) into the engines as I can: cab roof inside, fill the
      boiler and melt out just where the motor will clear when reassembled.
      glue on weights on the pony and trailing trucks. My RGS #461 (and
      tender) weigh a mighty 15 Oz. and pulls like mad. My# 455, #463,
      #452, # 453, and #462 are just slightly lighter. It is wierd that as
      close as they are in actual weight, they all act and pull
      differently. Equalization maybe. Also the #461 has been run so much
      that the plating is gone on the drive wheels. Maybe better traction
      with raw brass? The #452 will hardly pull what my #41 or #42 will
      pull. I also weight the tender beyond stock for better pickup.
      In conclusion, stay at 3% or less and you will have a better chance
      at prototype operation.
      regards, as always, jefe


      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
    • Don Bergman
      Alan I have a 15 section of 4% grade and wish it was longer. Keystone Hill between Illium and Telluride (Gets we from the lower level to the upper level in a
      Message 2 of 21 , Mar 1 10:23 PM
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        Alan

        I have a 15' section of 4% grade and wish it was longer. Keystone Hill between Illium and Telluride (Gets we from the lower level to the upper level in a hurry) , and a shorter section of 4% 9' between Pleasant Valley and Dallas Divide. It is a great excuse to double, triple and (yes we tried it once) quad the hill. And if no one is around then we double the hill. With DCC it is one of my favorite operating experiences. Do watch the curves. Keep them large - nothing less that 24" radius and larger if you can. I had trouble with the c-16's not pulling more that 2-3 cars up the hill, stuffed them full of weight and they now pull more than real C-16's could haul. (have to remove some the next time they hit the work bench)

        I also have a ton of 3% and 3 1/2% great railroading.

        Don Bergman
        RGS ----- Original Message -----


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • David
        Don, where did you find the room to put the weight in the C-16 s? Also who makes them? Thanks David
        Message 3 of 21 , Mar 2 12:57 AM
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          Don,
          where did you find the room to put the weight in the C-16's? Also who
          makes them?
          Thanks
          David
        • Arthur Dutra III
          Sorry if this is a repeat I ve been very busy and haven t read the posts in over a week. Don t forget that curvature has a big impact on the effective grade
          Message 4 of 21 , Mar 2 9:41 AM
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            Sorry if this is a repeat I've been very busy and haven't read the posts in over a week. Don't forget that curvature has a big impact on the effective grade experienced by the train. A 4% grade with significant curvature may have an effective grade on 5+%.

            There was a nice description of effective grade and how to calculate it, in MR (I think) a couple of years ago.


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Don Bergman
            David, I use solid core solder. And miscellaneous weights I have collected over the years (weights often come with car kits and I do not use it all so I
            Message 5 of 21 , Mar 3 2:20 PM
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              David,

              I use solid core solder. And miscellaneous weights I have collected over the years (weights often come with car kits and I do not use it all so I save it for wherever it will fit). Also if there is room use fishing sinkers.

              Don Bergman
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: David
              To: HOn3@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 3:57 AM
              Subject: [HOn3] Re: 3% or 4%



              Don,
              where did you find the room to put the weight in the C-16's? Also who
              makes them?
              Thanks
              David







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            • captaindavekrembs
              ... (weights often come with car kits and I do not use it all so I save it for wherever it will fit). Also if there is room use fishing sinkers. ... side
              Message 6 of 21 , Mar 3 7:46 PM
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                --- In HOn3@yahoogroups.com, "Don Bergman" <DBRenegade@...> wrote;

                >
                > David,
                >
                > I use solid core solder. And miscellaneous weights I have collected over the years
                (weights often come with car kits and I do not use it all so I save it for wherever it will fit).
                Also if there is room use fishing sinkers.
                >
                >
                > Thanks
                > David
                > I have salvaged roof flashing lead a little over 1/16" thick, it fits every where, roofs, cab
                side walls. I also use those duck decoy weights that are about 1/8" and long and flat.
                These can be cut with scissors and formed to shape.
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
              • Pete Doty
                I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail joints, yet runs flawlessly! He explained his reasoning and I accepted it as being
                Message 7 of 21 , Mar 4 8:54 AM
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                  I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail
                  joints, yet runs flawlessly!
                  He explained his reasoning and I accepted it as being pragmatic. "If I need
                  to move it" etc.
                  So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?

                  Of course if you do, no acid core, right?

                  Pete
                • Bill
                  Hi Pete; Out here in SoCal, where temperatures get really hot in the summer, I have noticed that rails do expand. I leave a gap, normally 1/32 between sections
                  Message 8 of 21 , Mar 4 9:17 AM
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                    Hi Pete;

                    Out here in SoCal, where temperatures get really hot in the summer, I
                    have noticed that rails do expand. I leave a gap, normally 1/32
                    between sections to allow for expansion. I have seen this gap close
                    up. I prefer not to solder the rails but rather use a small jumper
                    wire between rails, or simply wire that section of track to the main
                    power lines under the layout.

                    I am sure other parts of the country to not experience extreme temp
                    swings, but my layout is in my garage. When it is 110+ outside, its
                    gets really hot inside my garage.

                    Also I have never really liked relying on rail joiners to reliably
                    transfer power from one rail to the next. I guess soldering the rail
                    joiner is a personal choice rather than a hard fast rule.

                    Bill Beverly

                    > So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?
                    >
                    > Of course if you do, no acid core, right?
                    >
                    > Pete
                    >
                  • dan
                    On using lead in your models: note that a lot of us model railroaders are collecting grey hair as fast as we collect un-built kits. I know I used to be pretty
                    Message 9 of 21 , Mar 4 9:53 AM
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                      On using lead in your models: note that a lot of us model railroaders are
                      collecting grey hair as fast as we collect un-built kits.

                      I know I used to be pretty casual about toxics but I want as many good years
                      of model building ahead of me as possible.

                      Please remember to wear rubber, latex, or vinyl gloves when handling lead.
                      Lead poisoning in no joke.


                      --------------------------------
                      Daniel Swearingen, Tiburon Ca.
                      http://www.polyweb.com/dans_rr/blog/

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: HOn3@yahoogroups.com [mailto:HOn3@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                      captaindavekrembs
                      Sent: Friday, March 03, 2006 7:47 PM
                      To: HOn3@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: [HOn3] Re: 3% or 4%-weights

                      --- In HOn3@yahoogroups.com, "Don Bergman" <DBRenegade@...> wrote;

                      >
                      > David,
                      >
                      > I use solid core solder. And miscellaneous weights I have collected over
                      the years
                      (weights often come with car kits and I do not use it all so I save it for
                      wherever it will fit).
                      Also if there is room use fishing sinkers.
                      >
                      >
                      > Thanks
                      > David
                      > I have salvaged roof flashing lead a little over 1/16" thick, it fits
                      every where, roofs, cab
                      side walls. I also use those duck decoy weights that are about 1/8" and long
                      and flat.
                      These can be cut with scissors and formed to shape.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • Hart Corbett
                      With regards to weight in cars, I have two coffee cans of lead shot which was made to be used in reloaded shotgun shells for hunting. This lead shot can be
                      Message 10 of 21 , Mar 4 10:41 AM
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                        With regards to weight in cars, I have two coffee cans of lead shot
                        which was made to be used in reloaded shotgun shells for hunting. This
                        lead shot can be glued into all sort of odd corners, sometimes just one
                        or two pellets in a given location. I'm not sure that lead shot is
                        still manufactured; it may be all steel or iron shot now. Even such
                        non-lead shot can still be useful even if it's not as heavy as lead.
                        I've used the lead shot in everything from HOn3 flat cars (as long as
                        one is not picky about the appearance of the framework underneath the
                        car) to 1:20 engines and cars. Such reloading shot used to be
                        available in sporting goods shops which catered to hunters.

                        I've also used sheet lead (also probably not available now) upon
                        occasion. I have a good supply of it left over from an insulation job
                        with which a neighbor was involved more than 30 years ago. In one
                        instance, I built a 1:20 West Side Lumber Co. caboose in wood. Even
                        with the trucks, it would have been far too light. Accordingly, the I
                        made the floor planking inside the caboose with sheet lead. Works
                        great. Perhaps such a technique could still work using non-lead
                        metals; make the floors of the planks themselves out of metal instead
                        of trying to fit some sort of sheet metal between the planks and the
                        frame.

                        Best regards, Hart Corbett
                      • Mike Lehman
                        I only solder rail joiners in the very few cases when I am depending on the joint to conduct electricity. This tends to be small, short sections of track, such
                        Message 11 of 21 , Mar 4 10:49 AM
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                          I only solder rail joiners in the very few cases when I am depending on
                          the joint to conduct electricity. This tends to be small, short sections
                          of track, such as a stub-end siding where the power is fed from the
                          feeders attached to the turnout or for track over a bridge, where the
                          power is fed from the adjacent section of track.

                          Generally, every section of track on my layout has feeders attached to
                          it. That is:
                          * all turnouts
                          * all sections of flex track (except as noted above)

                          I tend to only use rail joints for mechanical alignment and rely on
                          feeders for power supply. The mistake many make is in assuming that you
                          can kill two birds with one stone by soldering rail joiners. You're
                          better off soldering power feeders instead.

                          In addition to the improved reliability of power, this is also a factor
                          if you ever anticipate converting to DCC. This helps spread the amp load
                          out over many reasonably sized feeders. If you depend on just a few
                          feeders and multiple rail joints to feed power, then the feeders may
                          need to be replaced with heavier gauge wire in order to run DCC.
                          Otherwise, lots of amperage has to feed through multiple rail joints, a
                          problematic situation if you'll be running several trains at once on a
                          section of track.

                          And I never use acid flux for trackwork and especially rail joints. They
                          are practically impossible to clean up enough to prevent corrosion in
                          the future.
                          Mike Lehman
                          Urbana, IL

                          Pete Doty wrote:

                          >
                          > I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail
                          > joints, yet runs flawlessly!
                          > He explained his reasoning and I accepted it as being pragmatic. "If I need
                          > to move it" etc.
                          > So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?
                          >
                          > Of course if you do, no acid core, right?
                          >
                          > Pete
                          >
                        • Mark Kasprowicz
                          Used lead for years. A int dead yet - no one shot me with it yet. Though that might be about to happen. Mark Kasprowicz
                          Message 12 of 21 , Mar 4 12:07 PM
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                            Used lead for years. A'int dead yet - no one shot me with it yet.
                            Though that might be about to happen.
                            Mark Kasprowicz
                          • Neil L. Putz
                            Pete, You are correct. Acid core solder is NEVER for electronics. Use only rosin core. Neil ... From: HOn3@yahoogroups.com [mailto:HOn3@yahoogroups.com]On
                            Message 13 of 21 , Mar 4 12:07 PM
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                              Pete,
                              You are correct. Acid core solder is NEVER for electronics. Use only rosin
                              core.
                              Neil
                              -----Original Message-----
                              From: HOn3@yahoogroups.com [mailto:HOn3@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Pete
                              Doty
                              Sent: Saturday, March 04, 2006 11:55 AM
                              To: HOn3@yahoogroups.com
                              Subject: RE: [HOn3] Trackwork



                              I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail
                              joints, yet runs flawlessly!
                              He explained his reasoning and I accepted it as being pragmatic. "If I
                              need
                              to move it" etc.
                              So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?

                              Of course if you do, no acid core, right?

                              Pete




                              HOn3 list web pages are:
                              http://www.railwayeng.com/hon3/
                              http://groups.yahoo.com/archive/Hon3/
                              http://groups.yahoo.com/files/HOn3/




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                            • Neil L. Putz
                              It s amazing how prototypical scale rail is to the real thing when it comes to temperature. Example: SERIOUS rail expansion along the tracks parallel to I-10
                              Message 14 of 21 , Mar 4 12:10 PM
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                                It's amazing how prototypical scale rail is to the real thing when it comes
                                to temperature. Example: SERIOUS rail expansion along the tracks parallel
                                to I-10 between Tucson and El Paso, for all those who are familiar with that
                                part of the country.
                                Neil
                                -----Original Message-----
                                From: HOn3@yahoogroups.com [mailto:HOn3@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Bill
                                Sent: Saturday, March 04, 2006 12:17 PM
                                To: HOn3@yahoogroups.com
                                Subject: [HOn3] Re: Trackwork



                                Hi Pete;

                                Out here in SoCal, where temperatures get really hot in the summer, I
                                have noticed that rails do expand. I leave a gap, normally 1/32
                                between sections to allow for expansion. I have seen this gap close
                                up. I prefer not to solder the rails but rather use a small jumper
                                wire between rails, or simply wire that section of track to the main
                                power lines under the layout.

                                I am sure other parts of the country to not experience extreme temp
                                swings, but my layout is in my garage. When it is 110+ outside, its
                                gets really hot inside my garage.

                                Also I have never really liked relying on rail joiners to reliably
                                transfer power from one rail to the next. I guess soldering the rail
                                joiner is a personal choice rather than a hard fast rule.

                                Bill Beverly

                                > So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?
                                >
                                > Of course if you do, no acid core, right?
                                >
                                > Pete
                                >






                                HOn3 list web pages are:
                                http://www.railwayeng.com/hon3/
                                http://groups.yahoo.com/archive/Hon3/
                                http://groups.yahoo.com/files/HOn3/




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                              • Dieter Stehli
                                I do not solder my rail either, except in long curves to avoid getting a kink where the joiner is, but then I will cut a gap in a better suitable location.
                                Message 15 of 21 , Mar 4 2:44 PM
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                                  I do not solder my rail either, except in long curves to avoid getting
                                  a kink where the joiner is, but then I will cut a gap in a better
                                  suitable location. When laying the track I attach three pairs of feeder
                                  wires per length of flex track, all connected to a bus. This permits me
                                  to cut gaps wherever I want if required later due to expansion, without
                                  having to install jumper wires. More work during installation, I agree,
                                  but more flexibility and less work later.

                                  Dieter

                                  Am 4. Mrz 2006 um 17:54 Uhr schrieb Pete Doty:

                                  >
                                  > I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail
                                  > joints, yet runs flawlessly!
                                  > He explained his reasoning and I accepted it as being pragmatic. "If
                                  > I need
                                  > to move it" etc.
                                  > So is there a good reason NOT to solder your rail joints?
                                  >
                                  > Of course if you do, no acid core, right?
                                  >
                                  > Pete
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > HOn3 list web pages are:
                                  > http://www.railwayeng.com/hon3/
                                  > http://groups.yahoo.com/archive/Hon3/
                                  > http://groups.yahoo.com/files/HOn3/
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
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                                • Brett Payne
                                  Pete, I only solder rail joints if they fall on a curve and are therefore likely to try to pull out of alignment. But I do solder a drop wire to the power-bus
                                  Message 16 of 21 , Mar 4 7:50 PM
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                                    Pete,
                                    I only solder rail joints if they fall on a curve and are therefore
                                    likely to try to pull out of alignment. But I do solder a drop wire to
                                    the power-bus under the layout from each length of flextrack.
                                    Brett

                                    Pete Doty wrote:
                                    >
                                    > I recently visited a neighbors layout and he does not solder his rail
                                    > joints, yet runs flawlessly!
                                    >
                                    >


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                                  • jeff reynolds
                                    ... Yep, Dieter s got the ticket. My style is to have a feeder wire to every piece of unsoldered rail. I too, leave the joiners loose for contraction
                                    Message 17 of 21 , Mar 4 8:12 PM
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                                      Dieter wrote:
                                      >"I do not solder my rail either, except in long curves to avoid getting
                                      >a kink where the joiner is, but then I will cut a gap in a better
                                      >suitable location. When laying the track I attach three pairs of feeder
                                      >wires per length of flex track, all connected to a bus. This permits me
                                      >to cut gaps wherever I want if required later due to expansion, without
                                      >having to install jumper wires. More work during installation, I agree,
                                      >but more flexibility and less work later."
                                      >
                                      >Dieter

                                      <SNIP>
                                      Yep, Dieter's got the ticket.
                                      My style is to have a feeder wire to every piece of unsoldered rail.
                                      I too, leave the joiners loose for contraction and expansion. I
                                      solder my turnouts on PC ties (about 80 solder/pc tie turnout on my
                                      layout). For curved sections of track I'll solder pieces of flextrack
                                      together (at the joiner), in a tangent, first. Then do the curving to
                                      fit the locale. I also cut the little spacers off the bottom of the
                                      rails between the ties. It's good to see air under code 40 rail. For
                                      yards, I have put a bunch of junk flex track pieces together and
                                      soldered/joiner them together. I just make lengths of stock,
                                      soldering whatever I have together, sometimes over 40 to 55 and back
                                      using a smashed on one end 55 joiner soldered to the bottom of the 40
                                      rail, and some cardstock to even the railheads. I've even tried code
                                      40 on one side and code 55 on the other for some short sections.
                                      Pretty wierd, but it works. You can do this on curves for some super
                                      elevation. Although, my only super elevation on "Mears' Madness" is
                                      been a constant headache with long trains (4-5 engines, spread over
                                      about 50 cars). The cars just don't have enough weight to track any
                                      other than straight up. After the current move, the super elevation
                                      is going away.
                                      regards, as always, jefe
                                    • James Bogener
                                      You all probably know this, but when prototype railroads went to ribbon rail welded joints, they noticed this same problem. I m not sure exactly how they deal
                                      Message 18 of 21 , Mar 14 7:49 PM
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                                        You all probably know this, but when prototype railroads went to ribbon rail welded joints, they noticed this same problem. I'm not sure exactly how they deal with it...maybe calculate the expected expansion for a given location and include appropriate spaces?

                                        Just thought this was an interesting prototype tidbit. From someone planning a garage layout, I'd wondered if this was a problem in modeling as well. Now I know to plan for it.

                                        Bill <traintalk@...> wrote:

                                        Hi Pete;

                                        Out here in SoCal, where temperatures get really hot in the summer, I
                                        have noticed that rails do expand....


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