Sarum Bridge

Post details of your T gauge layouts and the progress you are making.
martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

I am afraid my camera skills are sorely lacking (though hopefully improving). I did use as much extra light as I had at hand (three desk lamps perched on chairs or clamped to a bookcase), but we had a dull and cloudy weekend down here in Melbourne so my preferred natural light option wasn't available. It will be easier to film when I get around to adding proper layout lighting.

I tried to make the signal shots as interesting as possible, but they don't show up all that well in the video. For example, the two home signals protecting the platforms are three aspect and quite busy in the shot, but their yellow state is barely detectable by the camera. I use a multiplexed driver chip to power them so yellow is actually rapidly alternating green and red flashes which works well for the human eye, but the camera shows this a slightly flickering reddish-orange. I can see them changing in the video, but I doubt most viewers would notice.

User avatar
tjejojyj
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 12:23 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by tjejojyj »

I thought the framing and editing of the video were fine and sometimes you need a camera that has a lot of manual settings to get the final "10%" of polish.
(It always helps to have a compelling and interesting subject!)
Hopefully I'll be in Melbourne when your displaying it.

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

It looks like Sarum Bridge will be making its debut appearance at this year's Caulfield (Melbourne) exhibition in August, one of the larger shows down here in Oz, so I've pulled it out of the cupboard and got back to work on it. Ah well, the best laid plans of mice...

I have completely reworked the speed control electronics, replacing the 3 555-based PWMs (one per speed notch) with 4 PIC-based units (one per section). These are all fully synchronised and driven by the one PIC to avoid speed surges when crossing section boundaries, and have basic inertia for smooth starts and stops. They are pretty much a drop-in replacement for the earlier bank - I just added a couple of extra plugs to bypass the old speed control relays and redirected a few other cables. It all behaves much better now.

I have also picked up a couple of new 16M motorised chassis, so over the next few days will be updating the two loco-hauled trains to be double-headed (adding a class 25 and a motorised siphon). With any luck, that should completely resolve the last lingering speed issues.

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

The permanently coupled and wired double-headed approach seems to work out well. Here is a quick video of a basic creep and start/stop test. The wheels and track are not particularly clean, and some of the locos were stuttering along and needing a helping hand when running individually. This is using my original test track and the standard Eishindo PWM controller.

http://youtu.be/7BAgmvBZjas

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

I am back working on the layout after a fair old break. This might have something to do with it being scheduled for its first public showing at this year's exhibition at Caulfield (Melbourne, Australia) in just over a week, one of our larger shows downunder. I'll try to post some pics and a new video of it in its completed (!) state after the exhibition, but here are a few work-in-progress shots.

----

The final form of the wiring. Most of that big circuit board on the left is now redundant and disconnected - I ended up replacing its controllers and speed-switching relays with a second board with a micro handling four synchronised PWM controllers, one per track section. It all works much better now - the trains speed up and slow down properly. I really should have done it this way to begin with and saved a lot of time and effort. The signals and level crossing controller are clearly visible.

Image

The layout in its current state, buried beneath heaps of grass scatter while waiting for the glue to dry. Tomorrow I'll pick the layout up, turn it upside down, and give it a good shake to see how it all turned out.

Image

The full set of buildings - still pretty rough and ready, but less so than the previous mockup version. Customised printed images wrapped around balsa formers, with Plastruct L-girders for roofs and short lengths of styrene strip for chimneys. The concrete footbridge is built from a length of Plastruct U-girder.

Image

User avatar
dkightley
Posts: 1274
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:43 pm
Location: Nottingham, UK

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by dkightley »

There's nothing like a pending show to focus the mind! ;) ;)

Your layout is looking really, really good.....and I look forward to seeing more pictures and video!

Good luck with the final preparations....and for the show.
Doug Kightley
Webmaster here and volunteer at the National Tramway Museum http://www.tramway.co.uk

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

Getting there at last - the station is finally starting to look like a station. Really just road vehicles, people and touch-ups still to go... ... and maybe some station nameboards and a new backscene.

Image

Image

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

Here are a couple of shots of the final pre-exhibition scenic updates...

The vehicles and people really, really help. I tried using the Eishindo people, but they are just vaguely humanoid plastic blobs. I ended up using the pre-painted, etched brass (2D!) 1:400 people from a Czech company called Eduard (they do accessories for model ships and aircraft). Their 1:450 ship's railings also make good fences - you can cut them out as 2-, 3- or 4- rail types as needed.

Image

Image

User avatar
dkightley
Posts: 1274
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:43 pm
Location: Nottingham, UK

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by dkightley »

This is stunning!!

The little people and the vehicles bring the layout to life!


Looks as if I'll have to investigate this supplier.......


btw. Are the platform lights simply flat headed nails??? If they are, they look perfect!
Doug Kightley
Webmaster here and volunteer at the National Tramway Museum http://www.tramway.co.uk

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

I was very pleasantly surprised by the standard of the Eduard figures (http://www.eduard.com/store/Eduard/Phot ... 1-400.html). BTW, the drawing on the linked page is accurate - that is exactly how they look. They are flat (which requires some care in placement for reasonable viewing angles) and a bit too vivid (a thin wash of light grey paint over the fret fixed that). I found that the easiest way to stick them in place was to leave the fretwork tabs on their feet, then bend these over with tweezers to make a stand. Bending the figures to put them on seats was also trivially simple.

The station lights are just Peco track pins.

Jmyrick
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 12:32 am

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by Jmyrick »

Incredible!

ivanf
Posts: 107
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by ivanf »

what doug said! :)

hope the exhibition goes well.

any plans for another video? I enjoyed the last one a lot.

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

The first day of the exhibition is over, and the layout performed well and always had a full crew of viewers. For what it is worth, Orbost is there and looking good as well - two T gauge layouts!

I do intend to make another video and update the article on my website as soon as the exhibition is over - the video should be pretty much a remake of the last but of the layout in its new guise, hopefully with improved camera technique too.

The stock is standing up well to heavy use, but I am glad I whipped up a quick and dirty 3-car class 101 as a spare train the night before. I found a suitable image on the web, turned it into a carefully-sized DIY roof-and-sides overlay with Paint and Gimp, printed it out on plain paper, glued it to some spare body shells, and applied a coat of matt varnish.

The usual cruel, cruel closeup...

Image

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

The railway survived its first exhibition. Other than a few gremlins with the optical detectors, one pair of locos slipping and an intermittent fault with the roads, it all held up very well. The track was completely trouble-free and needed no cleaning, the locos never stalled (other than the temporary single-motor-unit DMU) and only needed superficial wheel cleaning overnight. Very, very happy.

I've cobbled together a new video (no captions yet). I liked the previous format and plot, so have pretty much repeated it here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_5s75-t01A

ivanf
Posts: 107
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by ivanf »

Pleased to hear things went well. :)

And thanks for the video it's all looking fantastic!

hedge
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:03 pm
Location: South Coast UK

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by hedge »

Fantastic! Loved the bus/car crash. Lent an extra air of verisimilitude. Amazing achievement and should help put T on the map.

User avatar
dkightley
Posts: 1274
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:43 pm
Location: Nottingham, UK

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by dkightley »

Nice video...and glad the layout proved popular.

Another nail in the "T is a gimmic" coffin!! ;)
Doug Kightley
Webmaster here and volunteer at the National Tramway Museum http://www.tramway.co.uk

User avatar
nscaler69
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2013 2:12 am
Location: Adelaide, Australia

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by nscaler69 »

For Martink and any others in Australia, 3 photos of Sarum Bridge taken at the recent Caulfield exhibition have been printed in issue 26 of 'Model railways in Australia' magazine.
The first photo has the caption "You like mini mini railways. Well this is mini mini"

Greg M
Adelaide

martink
Posts: 276
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:13 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by martink »

It has been a long while since I have posted anything on this thread. Over the last two years the layout has been to a few shows and has had some minor upgrades to the control electronics. My plan was to basically retire the layout and replace it with a new, more ambitious exhibition layout, but alas, work commitments mean that the new one is postponed for at least another year.

So - plan B is give Sarum a minor facelift and let it have another year or two in the limelight.

The first stage of the upgrade is nearly done - a complete revamp of the electronics to finally get low-speed running and station stops up to the standard I want. The new system has been built, tested and (sigh) shipped to Doug for installation on The Bridge. I am now building a duplicate copy for my own use, and that should be ready in a week or two.

The second stage is get one or two new trains into service. With its existing set of three running continuously and full time at every exhibition, they get fairly tired by the end of the show, so having another couple to share the load should help a lot. I have a pile of Ozrail's improved wagons ready for the paint shop, and I hope the new wheel sets will let me run longer goods trains. Still thinking about the other one.

The third stage is to extend the layout by a few inches at the castle end. That has always been the rural backwater end of the layout, with nothing very interesting happening. This stage will add a simple working canal scene, with a couple of narrow boats shuttling back and forth. I can even see how I might implement a working lock, but the effort involved for that part says "not this year".

The fourth stage is to extend the layout a few inches at the town end, and then scrap the existing town and replace it with a much more extensive town scene, with a much more elaborate (working) road network.

The fifth stage will be to build and fit new backscenes. The existing ones were intended to be temporary, but experience shows there is nothing as permanent as a temporary expedient. Still thinking about these.

Anyway, the new stuff should start appearing on this thread piecemeal over the coming months.

First pic... the new control electronics and panel (unit #1, as shipped to Doug):

Image

zdrada69
Posts: 70
Joined: Sun May 07, 2017 10:38 pm

Re: Sarum Bridge

Post by zdrada69 »

Very impressive layout. Congratulations.

Post Reply