Author Topic: Has this ever happened to you?  (Read 1268 times)

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eja

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2017, 12:48:40 AM »
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If you want easy and reliable then just put an oval loop of Kato Unitrack on a piece of plywood, A Kato DC throttle, and one of their train sets wit a matching DC loco. That setup will run reliably for a very long time with no extra fiddling involved.  You can even add some of the Woodland Scenic pre-built structures.

The older I get, the more inviting this option sound !

AlkemScaleModels

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2017, 08:28:37 PM »
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I call this "But first syndrome."

As in, I need to spike down that rail. But first I have to go upstairs to get the pliers. Once upstairs, I see the vacuum cleaner and decide I need to vacuum the shop. But the extension cord is broken, so I have to fix it. So I break out the soldering iron. Once  I vacuum the shop and I head back downstairs without the pliers.

Repeat......

Bernard Kempinski

JMaurer1

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #17 on: May 22, 2017, 12:59:38 PM »
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...There's a Hole in My Bucket dear Liza, dear Liza...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There%27s_a_Hole_in_My_Bucket
Sacramento Valley NTrak

randgust

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #18 on: May 22, 2017, 02:28:42 PM »
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Wow, I think I've had three consecutive weeks of epic layout 'yak shaving' here.

I decided that as I got a batch of tiny TCS golden-white LED's for Christmas - and my son soldered nice leads on them - that adding a couple streetlights in Winslow would be a good small project I could get done in about an hour or less that would be fun in continuing my night operations project.

Well, powering more LED's is problematic, as I have a separate wall-wart circuit over to the only 3v LED's already at the fuel racks.  It's a PITA finding an outlet for that LED series, really need to make a permanent circuit.   Found and ordered a voltage blocker so I can power LED's from my standard streetlight voltage bus.  That will be mounted under the enginehouse for easy access.....but wait.... I did get a Berkshire Jct. arc-welder circuit a couple months ago, and it's got to fit under there too before I fit in the voltage blocker.   So I better put it in first.   And that took a couple days, long enough for the voltage blocker to arrive.  That's OK. 

 Meanwhile, ran the lit passenger train around and discovered that ONE of the Rapido easy-peasy light units was inoperative.    Probably a dead battery.... pulled that apart ... changed batteries, nothing.   Occasional flicker...wait, the glass reed switch is actually cracked.  Huh.  Contact Rapido for a replacement.... now passenger train out of commission for a couple days.

Back to the welder, well, it works, way too bright.   Put LED in brass tube below enginehouse, add foil in roof to reflect, yeah, that looks better.   Another day.  Got in voltage blocker, had to add more solder lugs, trace power wiring to new circuit....nothing.    Power not working to streetlight circuit now, traced entire thing.  Finally found broken wire INSIDE insulation, pull apart and fix.  Two more days on that one.

Get voltage blocker installed and tested on existing LED circuit.... adjust ..... works great.   Now, back to the streetlight.   Tomorrow!

Next day, turn on power, two LED's on fuel rack now not working.  Just touch them and they work again, oh well, still works.   Get in parts for Rapido board, replace that, everything works in the train again anyway.   Another day.

Next day, come it, start on streetlight mounting, excavate for first pole mount, pull bulbs out of old Model Power streetlights and replace with LED's and test.    Test on circuit with a 470-ohm resistor,..wait..... fuel rack lights out again!  Spend rest of evening debugging LED's and find that I never soldered the common wires together in the circuit... probably because I couldn't see to get an iron under there.  While making work space for soldering, knock over a pile of magazines that land on an unused picture frame, shattering glass in all directions.   Spend an hour cleaning up glass mess and floor.

Next day, power up the circuit again, drill a hole for the new streetlight.... and note that one of the four Miniatronics yard light towers has now gone dark!  Crap.    Check with a meter, it's burned out after....five years?   OK, carefully surgically remove it, disassemble it, and take one of the Model Power 16v bulbs and put back in it (so the color matches) and reassemble.    Repair and test yard light tower, there goes another day.

Yesterday.... solder up streetlight to longer leads, thread through mounting hole....  glue in place, ready to install...

What the heck did I do with that 470-ohm resistor?   Spend another 30 minutes looking for it.

Nope, ran out of time.   Still trying to mount a streetlight after three weeks.   We're gonna need more razors, and possibly another yak.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2017, 02:31:07 PM by randgust »

OldEastRR

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #19 on: May 22, 2017, 06:56:54 PM »
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And how many total minutes of train running time did you get, randgust?

randgust

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Re: Has this ever happened to you?
« Reply #20 on: May 23, 2017, 08:15:55 AM »
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I did at least have to run the passenger train for a few minutes to get my motivation for this project back!

As of last night, the single 'improved' LED streetlight was finally wired in and operational.

Now it should take me at least two more evenings just to put away all the tools and materials scattered around since I came up with this idea.
Oh, and as the final closing, as I was soldering in the leads on the terminal strip, I rolled back on the office chair, hung up on the power cord, tipped, lost my balance, grabbed for the wall, and knocked down another picture frame, ripping the hanger.  But no shattered glass this time.