It was Wednesday. It was HOT. It was a slow day. No one had much get up and go as the heat had made it get up and leave.
So while John and Bob One kept doing their thing on the new deck on the N scale layout at the club, I potted around doing more on the addition to the clubs' N scale Exhibition layout. What Peter A and I worked out was that we would convert the static dead end line to the cattle yard into an operating small point to point tourist train. The cattle yard would go and the track all be made operational.
Where the cattle cars are, we will have a small platform installed and maybe a small ticket office for the tourists to collect tickets. The cattle yard will become a gravel based car park for the tourists.
What was to be just a small amount of track work has gotten a little bigger as I found some of the old track was steel and rusty and crappy. So a bit more got ripped up than originally intended. But it is progressing nicely and should be easily ready for its first showing at the Bundaberg Model Train Show in March. Below is a pic of the middle module of the three I am working on. This oe has the two points required. The left hand ones will remain locked so that you cannot come or go form the mainline as we do not want interaction between the two. In fact, they are not even electrically connected.
The main work to date has been the track and in particular adding in working points and the adjustable joiners that span the modules of the layout. These joiners are the Kato 20-050 ones and are a boon to module based layouts. We make them so we leave them in one module and then slide them across to the next modules once that module is connected. So I had to cut back the trackwork and cork base to allow the static Kato piece of track (Kato 20-030 that has been cut in half and had the metal track removed) to be glued down with some Gorilla Glue - the slightly expanding type that grips like s to a blanket to all things including plastic.
The reason we remove the rail from the Kato 20-030 track is so that the normal Peco code 80 track can slide into the rail chairs and not require a joiner.
While we are talking Kato, I was after some buffers for the tracks and Peter A mentioned we had some Kato ones. So it was worth a look. So we eventually found them and they are perfect. They are a set track part, but the the buffer clips apart from the track and actually fits between the Peco sleepers nicely. We had three in our spare parts box and I need three - perfect.
When the old steel track at the cattle yard was removed, it ripped the skin off the foam and took some chunks of foam out of the module - not a problem. I repaired it nice and solidly with my patented PK's Goop. That's Vermiculite, Water, Poster Paint, Parfix Gap Filler. You squish it down with your spatula and then smooth it over and it makes a great base to work on. The cork and track was then glued in and I continued to add some Goop to where the platform will go.
So, back to yesterday. So I mucked about and cleaned the old scenery material off the left hand module where the new track is to go. I also carved out where the Kato components would go and glue the static part into place. Cork was glued down and then sealed with some grey paint. A section of track was carefully filed to take the rough edges off it and then slid into the Kato part. The track was then pinned down and some 50/50 white glue and water squirted over the track to glue it down.
So that brings us up to date. Peter A and I will need to decide on Saturday whether we want the track to stay at the same height from here on to the end of the tourist trackage on the far left, or perhaps let it raise up a centimetre or two - we'll see.