Newbie

Hi all,
I've been 'out of the circuit' (excuse the pun) for quite some time, and when i was active, i was very amateur!!! Could someone be kind enough to
explain the following two terms i've come across, and enlighten me to anything else i should know, regarding commonplace methods etc these days?
DCC (i know it's to do with precise control of the individual trains) Roadbed (yup, duh)
Thanks,
Barry
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DCC is digital Command Control. Each loco has an addressable chip inside, the track power is always hot, you drive the loco not the track. Roadbed is where the road goes when it is sleepy

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Ah figured it was someting like that! Who makes the best ones, and where's the best place to get them?

Thought so.
Baz
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"Baz'noid" <

inside,
where's
Roadbed is the ballast. The subroadbed is what the ballest is laid on.
-- Cheers Roger T.
http://www.highspeedplus.com/~rogertra / Home of the Great Eastern Railway
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Ah yes i had in inkling it would be.
Are there any other common terms i'm likely to come across that would confuse a newbie like me? Last time i worked on a model railway it was - track, points and a train. Since i was 15 at the time, and had easy reach, i didn't bother with point motors, power etc.
This time round i intend on using DCC, point motors, lighting and the faller road system on an N gauge layout, slightly smaller than a door (it's got to fit under my sofa as i have a small house!) I was going to construct a twice-round loop but i haven't got the height for an elevated section - any ideas how i can get round this for a double track?
Cheers!
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"Baz'noid"

Hundreds. :-)
Just ask when you come across them.
-- Cheers Roger T.
http://www.highspeedplus.com/~rogertra / Home of the Great Eastern Railway
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On Wed, 3 Dec 2003 11:08:19 +0000 (UTC), Baz'noid wrote:
=>I was going to construct a =>twice-round loop but i haven't got the height for an elevated section - any =>ideas how i can get round this for a double track?
Since N needs a vertical clerance of only about 1.5", or about 40mm, ypou should have plenty of room for an up-and-over 2x around loop. Try it. You just won't have much room for mountiaans, is all. :-)
The construction of the layout support will be a little tricky, since it has to be strong enough to withstand a fair bit of handling without warping enough to cause misalignment of the track. An egg-crate construction using 6mm ply about 3" wide may be best, with the grid spaced at about 12".
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor) <just one w and plain ca for correct address>
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mmmmm..... mountains......
Good point!!! I'd forgotten about that

has
i follow that - why not use a grid spaced at 12" for support and a single piece of 6mm ply? That's the way it used to be done!!! No doubt there's a blindingly obvious reason i can't think of!
I'm definitely going to look at the three-layer roadbed - is the best way to figure out the overhang on the curves still taping a pencil to the inner middle and outer edges of the longest carriage or is there a more techy way of doing that nowadays (boy have i been out for a while!!!! hmmm 15 away from 24 = 9 years since last one!)
Cheers Wolf,
Baz.
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On Thu, 4 Dec 2003 09:24:28 +0000 (UTC), Baz'noid wrote:
=>i follow that - why not use a grid spaced at 12" for support and a single =>piece of 6mm ply? That's the way it used to be done!!! No doubt there's a =>blindingly obvious reason i can't think of!
For your purposes, there are two overriding considerations: sufficient rigidity to withstand repeated handling, and weight. The eggcrate method is lighter, but maybe not enough to warrant the carpentry needed. That's your judgement call. In any case, rigidty is a function of depth. 1x2 with a 6mm ply skin will not be rigid enough. You may find that a hollow-core door is light and rigid enough. Check 'em out at your DIY builder's supply. You can cut about an inch off each side and 1-1/2" to 2" off each end without compromising integrity. Use insulation foam sheet for scenery to reduce weight.
=>I'm definitely going to look at the three-layer roadbed - is the best way to =>figure out the overhang on the curves still taping a pencil to the inner =>middle and outer edges of the longest carriage or is there a more techy way =>of doing that nowadays (boy have i been out for a while!!!! hmmm 15 away =>from 24 = 9 years since last one!)
Best to go with standard spacings. Here's a of spacing based on NMRA recommendations for long rolling stock. If in doubt, add a couple mm to the spacing.
radius    track    trackside     centres    obstacle 9"    1-1/4"    7/8" 11"    1-1/8"    3/4" 15"+    1"    5/8"
For intermediate radii, interpolate.
HTH&GL
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor) <just one w and plain ca for correct address>
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Thanks Wolf - I'll bear that in mind when i construct the frame
Could you break down the NRMA spacings a little - i understand the first being the curve radius but i'm not too sure what the other figures are!!! I'm having a blonde day today.
Cheers,
Baz
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On Fri, 5 Dec 2003 10:27:14 +0000 (UTC), Baz'noid wrote:
=>Thanks Wolf - I'll bear that in mind when i construct the frame => =>Could you break down the NRMA spacings a little - i understand the first =>being the curve radius but i'm not too sure what the other figures are!!! =>I'm having a blonde day today. => =>Cheers, => =>Baz => =>
Second figure is centre-tocentre track spacing -- more easily measured as left rail to left rail.
Third figure is track centre to nearest edge/side of trackside object - building, bridge abutment, tunnel entrance, etc. NB: Platform position is somehwat different, since it it's affected more by the swivelling of the rtucks (bogies) and the location of carriage steps - I'd experiment to find the best location for platforms. Scenic objects such as retaining walls and rock faces in cuts should not be a rpoblem if you allow sufficient space for track-side drainage ditches and such (without which the track won't look right IMO.)
Make a gauge. The cheapest is cardboard: cut a rectangle to the proper height and width. with a small tab centred at the bottom to slide between the rails. I made one such a gauge by layering boxboard (corrugated cardboard) pieces to about a 1/" + thickness. I made another out of a piece of 3/4" ply. Very handy tool.
Other people have cut a rectangle of 6mm ply to the dimensions of their longest and widest rolling stock, and attached a coouple of trucks. Roll this around the track to help locate track side structures - very handy for platforms. Make two, and you can check clearances along parallel parallel tracks very nicely. Make it out of acrylic plastic, and you can watch the wheels roll through turnouts (points) etc, and locate trouble spots. Etc.
HTH&HF
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor) <just one w and plain ca for correct address>
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Salv

reach,
faller
to
any
wrapped up, or one of CJ Freezers books :) Beowulf
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Build your own: http://www.merg.org.uk/resources/dcc.htm
Andrew
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On Tue, 2 Dec 2003 10:01:08 +0000 (UTC), Baz'noid wrote:
=>DCC (i know it's to do with precise control of the individual trains) =>Roadbed (yup, duh)
DCC = "Digital Command Control" The track in effect becomes a computer network, the controller is like the mouse that inputs user data to the "command station" (server), which in turn communicates with the loco. The chip in the loco translates the data into control of the current going to the motor, the lights, the sound-unit, etc. In effect, the loco is a smart peripheral. Chips are also used to control signals, turnouts ("points"), etc. Entry level systems by Digitrax and similar cost arounsdd $200US, including one or two controllers and loco-decoders. Many current-production locos come with a plug for attaching decoders; some locos come with decoders already installed.
Roadbed = the layer of wood underneath the ballast (cork) which is underneath the track. This three-layer track construction is highly recommended -- it has so many advantages that I'm always amazed that there are people that pin track directly to the plywood or chipboard they use for a train-table ("baseboard"), which is a Very Bad Idea. For that matter, using a solid table is usually a bad idea, too. Open framework is in most cases a much better option, but of course entails some carpentry, because among other things the roadbed has to cut to suitable curves. Etc.
HTH&HF
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor) <just one w and plain ca for correct address>
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DCC... I use Digitrax with my Hornby / Bachman etc. http://www.digitrax.com / I just got a couple of Z scale decoders, which make installation in a small space much easier. Just put one in a West Country loco, complete with Suethe smoke unit, and it works real well. Check the web site out, it may help you.
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it
better
open
of
work
and
Forgive my ignorance, but what is "the spline method" ?
Duncan
-- Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure . . . than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a grey twilight that is known as Seahouses
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On Wed, 3 Dec 2003 22:54:59 +0000 (UTC), Duncan wrote:
=>Forgive my ignorance, but what is "the spline method" ? => =>Duncan
Make thin strips of soft wood such as cedar or pine; dimensions about 1/4"x1/2" to 3/8"x3/4". These are the splines. Lay one spline on edge down the centreline of the track, pin it in place temporarily, adjust level / grade and curve, then glue and pin. Lay up splines against it on both sides, gluing and inning as you go, until the width of the roadbed is reached. Lightly sand the top. Makes very solid and very flowing roadbed. Lay track directly on it, or use the usual ballast layer. Some people space out the splines with short blocks of 1/4" wood - saves on splines. Length should be about 4-6ft, whatever is comfortable to handle, and stagger the joints. The fact that in effect you have one continuous roadbed helps dampen the sound, too.
Works best on open frame benchwork (layout tables, baseboards).
HTH
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor) <just one w and plain ca for correct address>
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"Duncan"

http://www.bcsj.org/rr/splines/index.shtml
Another version: -
http://siskiyou.railfan.net/model_ces.html
-- Cheers Roger T.
http://www.highspeedplus.com/~rogertra / Home of the Great Eastern Railway
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Try Google..........

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