Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Update to under-table turnout article

Expand Messages
  • D. A. Karp
    Hi all, For those interested in converting turnouts and other solenoid mechanisms to under-table drive, making them more reliable and attractive, I ve updated
    Message 1 of 8 , Feb 28, 2001
    • 0 Attachment
      Hi all,

      For those interested in converting turnouts and other solenoid mechanisms
      to under-table drive, making them more reliable and attractive, I've
      updated my article to include curved turnouts, double-slip switches, and
      uncouplers:
      http://www.creativelement.com/z/articles/undertable.html


      ___________________________________________
      http://www.creativelement.com/z/
    • jcubbin@optonline.net
      Hi, I made the modifications to my turnout as suggested on http://www.creativelement.com/z/ and it helped quite a bit. One question I should have asked in the
      Message 2 of 8 , Feb 28, 2001
      • 0 Attachment
        Hi,

        I made the modifications to my turnout as suggested on

        http://www.creativelement.com/z/

        and it helped quite a bit. One question I should have asked in the
        beginning of this thread is, exactly how smooth should a turnout be. I
        see there's a bit of a dip, briefly - I understand that. What I've
        found though is if I cut the speed to a crawl, many times the lok will
        "stick" inside the turnout. The only way out of it is a gentle push or
        tap of the table. Is this normal? If it is, do all scales suffer from
        this?

        Thanks
        John
      • D. A. Karp
        I believe the problem you re experiencing is that the locomotive, at very low speeds, it reaching a point where electrical contact is being broken. You ll
        Message 3 of 8 , Feb 28, 2001
        • 0 Attachment
          I believe the problem you're experiencing is that the locomotive, at very low speeds, it reaching a point where electrical contact is being broken.  You'll probably notice this more with steam locomotives, and less with electrics (due to the design of the trucks).  You can try some of these solutions:
                  http://www.creativelement.com/z/articles/power.html
          or you can, more simply, increase speed through turnouts :).





          At 03:59 AM 3/1/2001 +0000, you wrote:
          Hi,

          I made the modifications to my turnout as suggested on

          http://www.creativelement.com/z/

          and it helped quite a bit. One question I should have asked in the
          beginning of this thread is, exactly how smooth should a turnout be. I
          see there's a bit of a dip, briefly - I understand that. What I've
          found though is if I cut the speed to a crawl, many times the lok will
          "stick" inside the turnout. The only way out of it is a gentle push or
          tap of the table. Is this normal? If it is, do all scales suffer from
          this?

          Thanks
          John

          ___________________________________________
        • jcubbin@optonline.net
          I read that article but I m running a 8895, 2-6-0, no tender and it really takes a performance hit through the turnout. At first I thought it was perhaps
          Message 4 of 8 , Feb 28, 2001
          • 0 Attachment
            I read that article but I'm running a 8895, 2-6-0, no tender and it
            really takes a performance hit through the turnout. At first I thought
            it was perhaps because I had modified the turnout by removing the
            solenoid but I don't think this is the case.

            As I said it really does lurch at bit at slow speeds, I know you were
            only kidding about speeding the train up to avoid this, but that seems
            the only way to prevent the power drop.

            This is a pretty unpleasant situation as it tends to blow the rhythm of
            the lok. Is this just something that Z folks have to get used to?

            John
          • Ole Rosted
            On Wed, 28 Feb 2001 21:11:30 -0800, you wrote: Hi, This way of making turnouts is ridiculous and what I have been talking about the last three years here. ...
            Message 5 of 8 , Mar 1, 2001
            • 0 Attachment
              On Wed, 28 Feb 2001 21:11:30 -0800, you wrote:

              Hi,

              This way of making turnouts is ridiculous and what I have been talking
              about the last three years here.

              > You can try some of
              >these solutions:
              > http://www.creativelement.com/z/articles/power.html
              >or you can, more simply, increase speed through turnouts :).

              A turnout that demands heavy modifications from the user and/or
              letting the functionality be determined by the speed of trains going
              throug the turnout is a real BLUNDER. Shame on you Marklin!!

              Here's a test: take an 8800 (0-6-0) and run it very slow through a
              turnout (from any entry point). If it stops: trow the turnout in your
              garbage disposer.

              Of course there will be nu turnouts left when you are finished, and
              you will be at a point where you will realize, that you'll have to
              make the turnouts yourself. (Or perhabs buy JHM turnouts - they *look*
              good, I haven't tried them) .

              Although I'm strongly in favor of you making your own turnouts
              I'm actually not the right person to advocate this, as it has not -
              till now - been possioble for me to make one. The reason for this is
              evident: I must be more clumsy than the average Z'er, as I know, that
              several members on this list (and other lists as well) make turnouts
              on a regular basis.
              And I know of persons in Z-land who can make them in 30 minutes flat.

              The Märklin turnouts are a nightmare, and you'll NEVER get them to
              work satisfactorily. The "solution" is to only run truck based loc.s
              at full speed through them. Even that will perhabs need some
              modifications as described on the very fine

              http://www.creativelement.com/z/articles/turnout.html

              page.

              regards Ole Rosted






              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >At 03:59 AM 3/1/2001 +0000, you wrote:
              >>Hi,
              >>
              >>I made the modifications to my turnout as suggested on
              >>
              >><http://www.creativelement.com/z/>http://www.creativelement.com/z/
              >>
              >>and it helped quite a bit. One question I should have asked in the
              >>beginning of this thread is, exactly how smooth should a turnout be. I
              >>see there's a bit of a dip, briefly - I understand that. What I've
              >>found though is if I cut the speed to a crawl, many times the lok will
              >>"stick" inside the turnout. The only way out of it is a gentle push or
              >>tap of the table. Is this normal? If it is, do all scales suffer from
              >>this?
              >>
              >>Thanks
              >>John
              >
              >___________________________________________
              >http://www.creativelement.com/z/
            • M. Gottschalch
              ... First, I don t think he was kidding by much on the speeding up the lok to get through the turnout. The most of the Z loks have electrical pickup on only
              Message 6 of 8 , Mar 1, 2001
              • 0 Attachment
                jcubbin@... wrote:
                >
                > I read that article but I'm running a 8895, 2-6-0, no tender and it
                > really takes a performance hit through the turnout. At first I thought
                > it was perhaps because I had modified the turnout by removing the
                > solenoid but I don't think this is the case.
                >
                > As I said it really does lurch at bit at slow speeds, I know you were
                > only kidding about speeding the train up to avoid this, but that seems
                > the only way to prevent the power drop.
                >
                > This is a pretty unpleasant situation as it tends to blow the rhythm of
                > the lok. Is this just something that Z folks have to get used to?
                >
                > John
                >
                First, I don't think he was kidding by much on the speeding up the lok
                to get through the turnout. The most of the Z loks have electrical
                pickup on only two axles, usually the first and the last drivers. First
                check to make sure that the pickup wipers on the inside of the wheels
                are actually touching the back of the wheel as it moves from one side to
                the other. (they do have a bit of sideways play built in) I have had
                loks where the wipers were not bent out far enough to contact at all
                times. If that is OK, and the wheels are perfectly squeeky clean then
                the only option is more speed or to add more wipers as some people have
                done. On the smallest loks adding extra wipers to the center driver
                wheels is difficult but will give better electrical pickup.
                --
                Manfred
              • D. A. Karp
                I wasn t really kidding about speeding up slightly through turnouts. The problem is the turnouts are usually found in switching yards, where the speed is
                Message 7 of 8 , Mar 1, 2001
                • 0 Attachment
                  I wasn't really kidding about speeding up slightly through turnouts. The
                  problem is the turnouts are usually found in switching yards, where the
                  speed is supposed to be slow.

                  For an example of adding extra wipers to the wheels to improve
                  conductivity, see my review of the FR 8851 upgrade kit at:
                  http://www.creativelement.com/z/reviews/freudenreich.html

                  One of these days, I'll fuss around with my turnouts and try to add
                  "conductivity" where none existed before. I agree with Ole Rosted, in that
                  we shouldn't have to make all these modifications in order to have decent
                  turnouts. Since these are our only practical choices at the moment, I
                  suppose it's better to light a single candle than to curse the darkness.

                  I've got to wonder why both Peco and Micro-Trains make Z-scale track, yet
                  neither manufacturer has ever made any turnouts.

                  ___________________________________________
                  http://www.creativelement.com/z/
                • Bill Hoshiko
                  ... Ole You know that you are having a lot of fun with this problem of building a switch. You have gone into several new technologies that you never dreamed
                  Message 8 of 8 , Mar 1, 2001
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Ole Rosted wrote:
                    >
                    > On Wed, 28 Feb 2001 21:11:30 -0800, you wrote:
                    >
                    > Hi,
                    >
                    > This way of making turnouts is ridiculous and what I have been talking
                    > about the last three years here.
                    >

                    Ole

                    You know that you are having a lot of fun with this "problem" of
                    building a switch. You have gone into several new technologies that you
                    never dreamed of learning.

                    It is learning these new technologies that slows down your quest for
                    that perfect Z scale turnout. We have often wondered how we will spend
                    our time after retirement and model railroading leads us down so many
                    different paths that it seems we can never get to any real model
                    railroading. We have to learn carpentry, electricity, electronics,
                    computers, painting, casting, engineering, photography, machining,
                    focusing, planning, and if you want a Master Modeling Certificate from
                    NMRA you must even learn journalism.


                    And to you John,

                    Turnouts in all scales are the Achilles heel of model trains. If you
                    examine award winning model train photographs that include turnouts, you
                    will see turnouts that do not even come close to looking realistic.

                    Examine MR's 24th MR photo winner and look at how the turnout on the
                    lower right corner is attached to the rails leading to the RS-3.

                    It may very well be that the rail joiners used here is a consequence of
                    having a "floating turnout". I have often read that Atlas turnouts work
                    with a greater degree of reliability when installed in a manner to allow
                    the turnout to "float". That is: not being permanently attached to the
                    road bed. Their only connection to the rails on the layout is through
                    the rail joiners.

                    I am not trying to criticize the photograph. I just intended to point
                    out how the hobby has embraced the inability of model railroad
                    manufactures to build a better switch at a reasonable price. There are
                    many exceptions to this rule, and there are products offered that are
                    much more realistic but may be a bit more expensive and have a greater
                    degree of difficulty in installation than Marklin or in HO scale -
                    Atlas. Someday, we in Z, may have a manufacturer who will give us a
                    track and roadbed combination much like Kato which could bring smoother
                    operation but at a higher cost and with much less flexibility in track
                    planning.

                    Manufactured switch construction in this hobby has not been improved
                    upon since the 1940's. One positive change for the modeler has been the
                    introduction of plastic ties. The former fiberboard ties attached with
                    staples had a tendency to curl up because of moisture. (If you remember
                    that, then you are OLD!)

                    Almost all other changes to the popular manufactured switches has been
                    to simplify the process of manufacturing. ie: the use of the plastic
                    frog. And never forget the stamped metal one piece points with the ever
                    present super prototypical rivets. (Another feature of far too many
                    prize winning photographs and layouts. I think that the appropriate
                    comment here is for me is to "get a life")

                    Again, I am not trying to criticize the modeler. Just want to point out
                    how many in this model railroad hobby has criticized the difference in
                    32 inch wheels and 33 inch wheels on our model trains but totally accept
                    turnouts which show little resemblance to the prototype.

                    Another reason for the sloppy adherence to track standards is the
                    problem with electrical circuits. With my almost total ignorance of the
                    principles of electronics I do not understanding why we have any
                    electrical problems with our turnouts. I follow the rule that the
                    electrical path must follow (or lead) the path of the train. While
                    attempting to do this, if I run into a short circuit, then I must
                    install a gap. (Having been a bookkeeper for over 40 years has made me
                    very pragmatic)

                    There is also this talk of DCC compatible turnouts and non compatible
                    turnouts. If I understand this, it is a problem of a momentary
                    short-circuit. For non DCC power, a momentary short-circuit seems to be
                    acceptable but, for DCC it is a train stopping catastrophe.

                    I have always believed that even on a non DCC power system a momentary
                    short-circuit would not be acceptable. This short-circuit could cause
                    track supplied lighting circuits to blink. What about static sounds in
                    train sound systems? Don't ignore the pitting of your wheels. Our Z
                    scale wheels are much too small. Short-circuit pits are not scale
                    sensitive. Pitted wheels collect dirt and dirt interrupts electrical
                    connection.

                    So, John, if you want smooth, slow operating trains over your turnouts,
                    you may have to join Ole in his search for a more perfect Z scale
                    switch. (I am falling down on my participation in this quest and I have
                    to apologize to Ole for not being more active.) Do not join the rest of
                    the model railroad society and accept mediocrity. Go to

                    http://www.railway-eng.com/

                    This should set you on a path focused toward a more "perfect" track. I
                    have spent only 50+ years in this quest and still have no trains
                    running. Or you can accept the frailties of Marklin track and get on
                    with having fun operating trains. (Not that Ole and I are actually
                    enjoying ourselves trying to find that "perfect" Z scale turnout.)

                    Jeffrey MacHan's Val Ease Central uses Marklin products and operates
                    continuously before large crowds without problems. There are many other
                    Z scale layouts performing before large crowds at train shows that use
                    Marklin product so Marklin products are reliable. They just require a
                    little TLC. (Tender Loving Care)

                    Bill
                    El Toro
                  Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.