}> I am 60 and returning to model railways after 40 years absence. My
}> hasn't a lot changed :)
}> I always like track building and my father [now deceased] was
}> particularly good at building TT point work when he retired.
}> So I decided to try 2mm Fine scale and build my own track using the
}> 2mm association jigs.
}> Woe is me, my first attempt with the 2mm association track jig is a
}> disaster :( see
oh deary me a
}> real cock up.
}I'm afraid that one is toast. Don't waste time trying to recover it.
Yes I was quite proud of how badly I cocked up :)
}> Obviously I am seriously out of practice, as I used to be an
}> electronics engineer I can solder much better than that, but never so
}> small :)
}> If any one here knows anything about the 2mm association track
}> building jigs I could use some basic instruction.
}Might do better asking on the 2mm Virtual Area Group (its a Yahoo mailing
}list, links via the member's pages on the 2mm website).
Yes I know I read it as a list, but I am a Usenet fan have been for years
since before there was spam and email lists were Ezmlm, none of this easy
web shite + bloody adverts and posers and all :)
} You'll get a couple
}of hundred experts there, all willing to help the beginner, rather than
}hoping I've spotted a 2mm question here.
That was the plan but you have done just perfect thanks ;)
}> How do I get the bugger out without ripping it out ?
}> Any tips on my woeful small scale soldering would be welcome, my eyes
}> are not as young as they used to be but I an most unsure how to even
}> get this solder into the jig :(
}There is a book, called "The Beginner's Guide to 2mm Modelling", from the
}2mm Scale Association shop, which costs a mere ô. About 1/4 of it is
}devoted to building plain track and turnouts, with photographs, step-by-step
}how to do it, as well as some theoretical background. I recommend you get a
Got one, I will read it yet again :(
}Things which people don't necessarily spot on the track jig.
}1) There are some small holes underneath. They are so you can prod the
}sleepers from below with a pin or bit of rod held in a small pin-vice. Prod
}a small bit at each hole at a time, or you'll bend the track.
Yup that would work missed that trick :(
}2) Thermal contraction. If you put sleepers in jig, then rail, then start
}soldering at one end, then to the next sleeper, and so on, the whole rail
}heats. It expands a tiny bit. Then as it cools, it contracts and tends to
}lock everything into the jig. Because there is variation on manufacture (of
}both jig and sleepers) it affects some people (and their jigs) more than
}others. Way out is to solder a sleeper at one end, then the other, then one
}in the middle. From then on you can go alternate ends of the jig.
Missed that one too :(
}4) Solder. Use 60/40 lead/tin, or 188C solder paste. I've not tried modern
}lead-free solders in the jig, so how it behaves is unknown.
I have a big store of 60/40 lead solder. Fuck the government nobody takes
any risks any more :(
} But the sleepers
}(and jig) are SRBF based, and thus not as tollerant of the higher
}temperatures as fibreglass PCB (*).
Yes but I don't think that affects me, I am running the Soldering iron at
420 deg C.
}Shouldn't need lots of additional flux (don't really need any if things are
}clean and using multi-core solder or solder paste). If flux is needed, I
}would suggest Carrs Green Label, applied with small paintbrush.
}Advantage of using multicore without any additional flux is that one can
}form a chair-like blob, which looks pretty convincing when painted.
Yup that is just lack of skill on my part I will get better :)
}5) Cleanliness. This is a difficult balancing act, because if you clean the
}rail really well, the solder tends to flow along it, and you don't get
}"blob" solder to represent chairs. But, on balance, I would recommend you
}run the rail through something to clean it before soldering. Wirewool, or
}very fine wet and dry paper, or a GaryFlex block.
Yes this makes sense, I did wonder about that before I "had a go".
}In general, clean the sleepers before use (again fine wet&dry or Garyflex,
}(or glass-fibre pencil if you like splinters in your fingers)).
Yup, I don't. I think a brass cirular brush in the Dremel would work ?
}6) Chair sizes (the solder blobs). Multicore solder can be cut with a knife.
}So cut a few dozen (or hundred) little cubes/spheres off the reel into a tin
}lid. Make each chair by picking up a lump with the soldering iron and
}rapidly transferring to the jig. Perhaps with practise you'll be able to
}grab the right amount directly from the reel with the iron, though that is
}quite difficult to do reliably.
Well I will try the "chop up" system but I ought to be able to contol
solder, it is just pracice and I haven't done any for years.
}7) Soldering action. Bring the iron initially into contact with the side of
}rail, aim for halfway up the rail side, then rock it downwards to hit the
}sleeper. That should give a decent joint without delaminating the copper
}from the sleeper.
Yup that would work :)
}8) Iron size. I have built lots of track with an 18W Antex. My iron of
}choice these days is an Antex 50W temperature controlled, but its a bit
}pricey at around ñ00. Your Antex looks fine for the job, bit size not
}dissimilar to what I use.
That's what it is, only Digital control :) 238 UKP in total from Antex.
}Don't mix the soldering tip with different solder types; certainly don't use
}a tip which has been on whitemetal, and I am inclined to keep lead-free and
}lead-based solder tips separate until the use of lead-free is more fully
}understood by modelmakers.
I have yet to meet this problem, but your point is well made, thanks.
}9) Until used to it, I would put the jig in a vice so it stays still. The
}recommended way is to put the jig in a vice with the sleepers vertical, and
}work on one side. Then turn over.
}( I tend to only use the top of the jig to initially locate the rails and
}the first few sleepers, then I take it off and work on the bench. I use an
}old screwdriver as a prodder to push the rail down near where I am
Ah! Yes this I can do :)
}10) Some Jigs can be tight. Talc can be used as a lubricant. If its
}excesively tight, then maybe its made out of tollerance. Discuss matter with
}2mm shop keeper who could get it inspected.
It felt fine, pushing the sleepers in, but I had missed the Temperature
change effects and the holes under the sleepers, thanks.
}11) Cleaning up afterwards. If you used any flux, which includes the
}multi-core solder or solder paste, then you need to clean up thoroughly. If
}using Powerflo (don't**
) that means within 30 minutes. Others can be
}cleaned within a few hours. I clean up with a toothbrush, JiF abrasive
}cream cleaner, then finish in water. Also clean the jig at the end of a
}session. I think Powerflo can be cleaned with meths.
Good Idea, thanks.
}12) I would try to find someone locally who's done it before. There are
}Area Groups, and there are others who are usually willing to offer
I usually go to Usenet first :)
}(* and the man who chops the sleepers to size can't chop fibreglass as it
}will wreck his machine. He supplies lots of scales, not just 2mm, so the
}issue will be the same for them all ).
Yes I noticed a little variability bit not nearly sufficient to even think
* its brilliant for plumbing, but far too agressive for most modelling
}work. And its tendency to do damage if there is a spec left is
Thank you so much I have a much better idea what to do now, thanks very