Author Topic: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited  (Read 2678 times)

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rochsub

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Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« on: September 14, 2013, 08:01:41 AM »
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   Just an update on using .003 EZ Line for power lines in N Scale. 
   First off, thanks for all the valuable information provide by forum members on the topic. 
   After running some trains following the installation of the power lines, my initial concern about the lack of visibility of the very small .003 EZ Line has been eliminated.  Although the lines may not be that easy to see if different locations, as trains run under the lines they become more visible depending on the color of the cars and its contrast with the charcoal colored power lines.  Its a pretty cool effect as you can somewhat see in the video below. I high recommend the EZ Line.  I've been getting mine from www.fiferhobby.com.  I also have been purchasing Osborne utility poles from fifer. 


rogergperkins

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2013, 08:37:33 AM »
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I thought power and telephone or telegraph lines looked great in the photos I viewed online.
It seemed to be that one added detail needed after I install the poles.
BUT after I put the lines on the posts, I found I inadvertently entangled myself it the "spider web" I created with the line.
And thus a century ahead of the reality, "buried all my power lines."  ;)

MichaelWinicki

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2013, 09:36:40 AM »
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Glad you're pleased with the results Daryl...

Strung poles do make a big difference... even with just the "thin" line.

« Last Edit: September 14, 2013, 09:38:32 AM by MichaelWinicki »

jereising

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2013, 09:35:26 AM »
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Daryl, looks great!

Only problem I've had is to get just a bit of sag into the wires.  The prototype are rarely piano wire tight.  I recently strung wire in the Bealville farm - Cliff areas and think I finally succeeded.  If I can figure out how to get a decent pic I'll post it.  They look good to the eye, but so far no luck with the camera :-(
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Midniteflyer

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2013, 10:00:10 AM »
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I agree the sag is a tuff one to get right, The lines add a huge amount of detail IMO. Here is a pic from my module of some guys repairing a bad pole. The lines are Fly Tying thread.
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Dave V

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2013, 10:45:37 AM »
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Even adding just a few representative wires makes all the difference.  Honestly, the lack of sag doesn't bother me.

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DKS

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2013, 11:07:17 AM »
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Only problem I've had is to get just a bit of sag into the wires.  The prototype are rarely piano wire tight.

I agree, although telegraph wires along the ROW are usually pretty straight; it's the power and telephone lines along roads that sag. For them I use solenoid wire, which isn't as much of an issue since these lines are away from the tracks where you want ready access.
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pnolan48

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2013, 10:44:47 PM »
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I worked on getting a little sag in my lines for a long time and decided it was just beyond my modeling capabilities to do it correctly over more than a single span.

I have been able to get sag on the radio lines of some of my ships using very fine nylon, but the masts are a lot more rigid than your ordinary telephone pole and, again, it's only for a span or two. It's such painstaking work that I usually don't bother, and no one notices. I have strung wires tautly, and then tried to stretch them enough to sag. By the time I got anything to sag, the lines looked more like twisted spaghetti strands.

I have used very fine piano wire with 90 degree bends at each end that were stuffed into drilled holes on yardarms. The length between bends was just slightly more than that of a straight line. Glued properly, the wire could spring up (wrong) or down. But the wire was really too thick, prone to kinks, and probably more fragile than nylon. Also, the wire was not thick enough to really hold the 90 bend. I've never incorporated it into models--by the time I got it with the proper sag, there was superglue all over the joints, kinks at the bends, different sags, different arcs, etc.

I've thought, after watching nylon thread unravel when exposed to solvents in dullcoat, that maybe I could . . .

No, I've given up on this effort.


rochsub

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2013, 11:20:04 PM »
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I worked on getting a little sag in my lines for a long time and decided it was just beyond my modeling capabilities to do it correctly over more than a single span.

I have been able to get sag on the radio lines of some of my ships using very fine nylon, but the masts are a lot more rigid than your ordinary telephone pole and, again, it's only for a span or two. It's such painstaking work that I usually don't bother, and no one notices. I have strung wires tautly, and then tried to stretch them enough to sag. By the time I got anything to sag, the lines looked more like twisted spaghetti strands.

I have used very fine piano wire with 90 degree bends at each end that were stuffed into drilled holes on yardarms. The length between bends was just slightly more than that of a straight line. Glued properly, the wire could spring up (wrong) or down. But the wire was really too thick, prone to kinks, and probably more fragile than nylon. Also, the wire was not thick enough to really hold the 90 bend. I've never incorporated it into models--by the time I got it with the proper sag, there was superglue all over the joints, kinks at the bends, different sags, different arcs, etc.

I've thought, after watching nylon thread unravel when exposed to solvents in dullcoat, that maybe I could . . .

No, I've given up on this effort.

I agree with you 100%  While I have never attempted sagging power lines, I just can't see it ever working out on an operating layout.  Even if you were able to get things perfect between two poles, one bump or even just stringing to the next pole would likely ruin your work.  I believe using the EX Line strung taunt gives the best effect with also being able to withstand a bump or two.  Installs fairly quickly as well.

Daryl

spookshow

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2013, 06:46:09 AM »
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EZ Line sags very nicely, but it's a time-consuming procedure (especially if you want all the lines to have the same sag). Unlike you guys, I've never been ambitious enough to string up more than a couple of lines per pole.



Cheers,
-Mark



rochsub

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2013, 11:44:02 AM »
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EZ Line sags very nicely, but it's a time-consuming procedure (especially if you want all the lines to have the same sag). Unlike you guys, I've never been ambitious enough to string up more than a couple of lines per pole.



Cheers,
-Mark

Hmmm..., those look very realistic.  Maybe sagging lines are a possibility.  I just completed stringing 72 poles with about 2800 scale feet of power lines.  Most of the lines are in and around the Proviso Yard.  While I don't think sagging lines are applicable for my particular situation (large amount of lines in an area of lots of operation), they probably do have there place in dioramas or other smaller applications.

Daryl

Dave V

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2013, 05:28:11 PM »
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Mark, those look fantastic!

I'm guessing you stiffened them with glue.  That obviously removes any if the elasticity that makes EZ Line so much less of an operational headache than thread.

On a different subject, I think I'd like to try to use the green EZ Line to represent the oxidized trolley wire for PRR catenary.  Obviously I couldn't reproduce the graceful sweeping arcs of the suspender wire and still maintain flexibility, but having at least part of the catenary wire system present (and elastic) helps reinforce the illusion while maintaining the ability to maintain the trackage (and trains) beneath.
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peteski

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2013, 06:18:43 PM »
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Mark, those look fantastic!

I'm guessing you stiffened them with glue.  That obviously removes any if the elasticity that makes EZ Line so much less of an operational headache than thread.


I doubt it. It is some sort of rubbery elastic material (Spandex?) which is non-absorbent. I doubt that it would be possible to stiffen it with glue.  But it is also very flexible, enough so to sag under its own weight. If you don't tighten it between the poles, it will sag.
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spookshow

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #13 on: September 16, 2013, 08:31:44 PM »
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I didn't use anything to stiffen the EZ Line - it's just as elastic/stretchy as delivered. All I did was glue it between the insulators on the poles (using white glue, since anything more chemically complex than that makes it go all twisty and crazy).

Cheers,
-Mark

gary60s

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Re: Scale Power Lines Using EZ Line Revisited
« Reply #14 on: September 16, 2013, 09:16:00 PM »
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I had really good luck with "sag" using my line stringing tool and EZline.





Gary