Author Topic: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction  (Read 3819 times)

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ednadolski

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #45 on: February 25, 2020, 07:24:17 AM »
+2
When I look at my modeled scene, I think "Hmmm...no signal lines visible on the poles...must be a model!"  When I look at the prototype photo, I don't notice the lack of line visibility. 

It's my brain playing tricks on me...because I expect as a rivet counter/a$$hat that I should string wires, and I haven't...when in reality, they're not visible.

@robert3985 this is just me ruminating, but I wonder if this perhaps is some kind of effect from the notion of "granularity" that I mentioned.  From looking at models all the time, our brains, which function as pattern-recognition engines, become conditioned & adapted to seeing detail parts that are in general oversized, on the order of say 50% to 100% or so (more or less).   In N scale this is prevalent in many areas, e.g. handrails, ladders, couplers, wheels, rail, line poles, scenery elements, etc... almost everything, really.  This leads to two effects:  (1) When we see oversized details, our pattern-recognizing brains immediately make a "this is a model" association. This holds whether looking at a model in-person or in a photo, tho each of those also has subtle cues that help our brains to recognize them as such. Subsequently, (2)  that association creates an expectation, which feeds back into our pattern-recognizer as a sort of control parameter or bias, that every detail in the modeled scene should be over-scale by about the same amount.  Then, when we replace an element in the scene with one that is truly scale-sized, to the point where we cannot actually see it (just like with true prototype proportions), our biased expectation leads our pattern-recognizers to conclude "model with missing element" instead of "realistic prototype scene with true-to-scale sized elements that I can't see".  To remove or change the expectation, it would first be necessary to change enough of elements in the scene to scale sizes/proportions, so that the initial "this is a model" association is removed, or at least weakened to the point where the brain has to look for other cues in order to answer the "what am I looking at here?" question.

I refer to that as, 'increasing the granularity' or 'increasing the resolution', somewhat like replacing an HD image with a 4k version.  It's in essence trying to increase the scale fidelity of the models, by removing the more obvious "giveaway" elements.

Our brains of course use many other subliminal cues, but addressing them all become more a matter of trying to create a virtual reality - something that really is at the center of our model building efforts ;)

Ed

randgust

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #46 on: February 25, 2020, 05:04:25 PM »
+1
I'll have to mic Verns's poles to defend him, but his insulators were basically painted off of the usual Atlas N poles, then cut off and applied to individual wood crossarms with metal bracing.  What I found next to impossible is gluing those individual insulators back on wood crossarms, upright, spaced, and so that the first time you even touch it they didn't fall off.

I had the entire layout populated with Atlas plastic poles at one time, repainted, and even after that they still looked like plastic poles and were fragile enough that some got periodically snapped off.  This was a huge visual improvement on some of the most photographed areas of the layout.

With real wood, the crossarms are small enough that brushing against them or snagging them snaps them off at the pole (yes, Verne notched the poles to fit the crossarms, that part holds, but the crossarm still snaps) although the poles themselves are pretty tough.   

I'm all for the Ez-line, but I know darn well the poles I have aren't up for it.    Mike actually encouraged me to deliberately snag the lines and stretch them, and watching them recover without damage, well, that did it for me.   

I grew up in the sticks with REA service, and one memorable Christmas was spent without power after an epic snowstorm putting trees down on the phone and power lines; I volunteered to help the one man still on duty on Christmas day on resetting the lines and poles through the forest through my area, using block and tackle and chainsaws.   Even the prototype stuff isn't built tough enough to take that kind of abuse but it breaks just like the model wants to.   Interestingly enough, some of the metal salvage debris (bolts, braces and a couple partial crossarms) were used to hold up my rural mailboxes for years and are still there decades later.

wazzou

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #47 on: February 25, 2020, 05:12:07 PM »
0
Anyone seen the Woodlands Scenics pre-wired poles?

Jason


I've only seen images but they didn't impress me as much as the ones Rapido offered.
Bryan

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Maletrain

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #48 on: February 25, 2020, 07:17:32 PM »
0
As I think about how to make really nice looking poles conveniently, it seems to me that poles injection molded in transparent plastic the color of insulators would make a lot of sense.  That way, the parts that are not insulators can be painted to look like wood, and the insulators are solidly attached and look realistic.  If the moldings did not include the diagonal braces for the cross arms, then brass etchings of cross arms could be glued on after painting, or perhaps even supported by tabs that are bent back and pushed into holes in the poles and cross arms before they are glued.

To me, the problem with currently available products seems to be that the people who do injection molds want to make "the whole thing" rather than "part of an assembly", so we get some sub-optimum aspects on the molded products because those aspects could be done better with another medium.

Manufacturers who make cars for us could probably make the poles like I envision.  MTL, what do you think?

peteski

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #49 on: February 25, 2020, 09:09:49 PM »
0
As I think about how to make really nice looking poles conveniently, it seems to me that poles injection molded in transparent plastic the color of insulators would make a lot of sense.  That way, the parts that are not insulators can be painted to look like wood, and the insulators are solidly attached and look realistic.  If the moldings did not include the diagonal braces for the cross arms, then brass etchings of cross arms could be glued on after painting, or perhaps even supported by tabs that are bent back and pushed into holes in the poles and cross arms before they are glued.

To me, the problem with currently available products seems to be that the people who do injection molds want to make "the whole thing" rather than "part of an assembly", so we get some sub-optimum aspects on the molded products because those aspects could be done better with another medium.

Manufacturers who make cars for us could probably make the poles like I envision.  MTL, what do you think?

Your idea has been partially implemented by our 3D genuses.  Remember this thread, and the following conversation?
https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=45869.msg595675#msg595675

Cross arms (and close-to-scale insulators) are printed as one unit using transparent green resin.  They can then be glued to wooden poles.



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ednadolski

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #50 on: February 25, 2020, 11:10:52 PM »
0
Wow those look great!   8)

ed

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #51 on: February 26, 2020, 10:17:18 AM »
0
Your idea has been partially implemented by our 3D genuses.  Remember this thread, and the following conversation?
https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=45869.msg595675#msg595675


Yes, that thread was one of the things that made me think about what I suggested.  Those finished cross arms sure look great.  But, the 3D print material and the glue joint to the wooden poles seems to make them pretty vulnerable to the snag and break scenario.  I am trying to think of a way to have pretty inexpensive but robust poles and cross arms that still look great.

randgust

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #52 on: February 26, 2020, 11:08:38 AM »
0
Just a thought - how hard would it be to actually drill and pin the crossarms on with .010 or similar wire?  When I've had to make similar connections between Delrin and something I've found it easier to drill/pin/ACC than rely purely on an adhesive for a joint like that.   My guess would be the crossarm or the pole might break, but probably not the glue joint.

p51

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #53 on: February 26, 2020, 12:44:50 PM »
0
Cross arms (and close-to-scale insulators) are printed as one unit using transparent green resin.  They can then be glued to wooden poles.


Wow, those look great! I used to Wiseman cross arms on my poles, and painted the insulators gloss green, but these look oh so much better.
Do they make these in O scale?

narrowminded

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #54 on: February 26, 2020, 12:51:42 PM »
0
Wow, those look great! I used to Wiseman cross arms on my poles, and painted the insulators gloss green, but these look oh so much better.
Do they make these in O scale?

I'm sure they can be done.  I think that was @Mark W who did those and he could probably scale them up or just draw them up for "O".  If he didn't want to do it I'm sure you could find others willing and able, including myself. ;)  Some dimensions might be handy for that. 8)

Also, I don't know if "O" would be large enough to make just the insulators to be glued into a cross arm. :|  Might be worth investigating.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2020, 12:53:24 PM by narrowminded »
Mark G.

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #55 on: February 26, 2020, 01:57:44 PM »
0
One comment on those cross arms - they have 4 insulators per side.  From what I have seen, signal wire cross arms always have 5 insulator positions on each side of the pole, with the inside ones being quite close to the pole.  Not all of the insulator positions are always used, but the spacing seems to always be the same, with blanks in some locations, sometimes.

So, if modeled with 5 per side, it should be easy to cut off any insulators in unwanted positions before painting the cross arms.

rodsup9000

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #56 on: February 26, 2020, 02:12:07 PM »
0
 I'm drawing up several different poles with the crossarms and insulators. I'll print them in green and see how robust they are.
Rodney

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robert3985

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #57 on: February 26, 2020, 09:34:49 PM »
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Much of what we're discussing here has been talked about before.  Here's TRW's "Lineside Pole Clinic" organized by DKS and contributed greatly to by me.  Of particular note are the scale drawings and prototype photos and also how lineside poles were set up, as well as various markings and meanings applied to them throughout the different eras as technology grew.   https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=46061.0

I have several newly found prototype drawings that I'll be adding to the clinic in the next couple of days.

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore

robert3985

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #58 on: February 26, 2020, 10:06:18 PM »
0
I thought I was missing something because the EZ Line I've always worked with is way thinner than the .010 phosphor bronze I've used for detailing, so I broke out the calipers.
Here is Fine EZ line laying through the calipers set at .010".  I know Berkshire Junction lists them at .010", but there's clearly quite a bit of daylight visible.


https://i.imgur.com/f90SVwq.jpg

Doing my best not to pinch, I read between .004 and .003".   When stretched, it'll easily go below .002".


https://i.imgur.com/wv2URoS.jpg


Birds sure love EZ Line too.   8)


https://i.imgur.com/Gh4YgSw.jpg


Sheen off the lines also help those 3D printed translucent insulators pop!  I know Spring Creek has a few packs left.   ;)


https://i.imgur.com/TtpbtvI.jpg

@Mark W  Welllllll....This changes things for me!  :)  .010" diameter was too big for me to consider, but anything under .005" is permissible, and even smaller is better, although I suspect that I don't want to stretch the EZ Line to the point that it decreases in diameter to .002"...which I think would be too tight especially if I've got a total of eighteen insulators on three crossarms on each pole.

Time to get my 3D crossarms w/insulators finished up and printed and send off an order to Berkshire Junction for several colors of EZ Line to experiment with!

Photo (1) - My 3D crossarms drawn from prototype dimensions taken from fallen UP Telegraph/Telephone Poles in Echo Canyon and photos of still-standing poles:



Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore

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Re: EZ Line from Berkshire Junction
« Reply #59 on: February 26, 2020, 10:18:32 PM »
0
Mark, are those Goldfinches sitting on your lines. :o

But it seems like a losing battle with gravity and the laws of physics to try to get model birds to sit on top of Berkshire Junction EZ Line, unless they are really close to the insulators.  (I'm gonna stick my pigeons on roof ridges and cross arms.)