Monday, 28 December 2009

Laying Tracks

Track electrical feeds
For electrical connections I am using the brass sleepers and brass dress makers pins. I've never been a fan of soldering wires to rails, so this is a nice little alternative.
I have decided to use the standard Tortoise point motor with the Exactoscale adaptor base, then some how find a way of fixing it to the Easitrac points.

Top view of TOU
I'm quite pleased with how it's come out, a nice improvement on my previous PCB versions. A few things have been sorted out in this image; the top switch blade now does not over hang the sleeper and the second plastic sleeper from the left his been fixed down properly. I struggle to see these things when on the layout, so the camera does have it's uses after all. Below, I will try and explain how this was finally achieved.

Underside view of TOU

Control Arms

The two vertical brass tubes can be moved along the plastic slider bar to adjust the final rest position of the switch blades and the brass tubes telescope inside of each other to suit the depth of your baseboards. The adjustable components allow the switch blades to just gently touch the stock rail, this reduces wear and tear in the long run. The dropper wires are a snug fit in the tube (.3mm ID tube with .288mm dia wire) and is not soldered or glued, this stops any twisting of switch blade tips when throwing the points over. Both switch rails are individually adjustable, to make up for any misalignment when fixing the Exactocale base to the baseboard. Trying to put screws into wood to an accuracy of 5 thou can be a bit tricky at times.

Switch rail with dropper wire

Above is a switch blade shown upside down with a .28 PB wire dropper soldered to it. The wire is first soldered along the foot of the rail for extra strength and the bent outwards and under the stock rail of the turnout (this piece will keep the tip of the switch blade the same height as the adjacent fixed rail). Then after the next bend, the long tail piece will thread downwards into the baseboard and into the brass tubes mounted on the exactoscale operating arm below.