Only the tour’s off

Last week we announced that the Railway Modellers’ Meet will take a different format this year. Encouraged to keep our distance and “be kind, be calm and be safe” by that delightful fascist, Dr Bonnie Henry, we won’t be meeting in person at SFU this year. Instead, we’ll be hosting a reduced program via Zoom. […]

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Styrene tubes for 622’s boiler

One of the supposed benefits of writing and blogging about my projects is that I can go back and repeat a technique that was successful, and sometimes avoid the ones that weren’t. Unfortunately, when it comes to how to roll the plastic sheathing for the boiler, the book on #10 is like a nude by […]

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Retreat to known ground

I’ve put the debacle of the micro connectors and missed resistor behind me, and as I said, I’ve decided to revert to connectors I know and trust. These are harvested from an IC socket, and are quite robust, but also big. Okay, big is relative in our world: I often tell people that a lot […]

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A bad week for electronics

You’d think that if your father had a doctorate in electrical engineering, at least a little wizardry might have rubbed off! Nope, he kept it all to himself, apparently. The story starts with the Hall effect sensor, which the ESU decoder wants to synchronize the exhaust sound. Countless YouTube videos make this gizmo look trivial, […]

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622’s tender cable

I struggled a little bit with whether to simply extend the leads from the tender-mounted decoder so that they could connect with the locomotive, or whether to create a cable with connectors on both ends. In the end, I decided on a cable, rather than having to deal with an obscene length of wires hanging […]

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Tender coupling

622’s tender coupling is a sandwich of phosphor bronze and styrene. The two layers of bronze carry track power from the two sides of the engine to the two sides of the tender through a mind-bending arrangement of layers and folds. Seriously, it is such a puzzle that I wasn’t certain I would have the […]

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Tender coupling tests

I recall a story about a cab ride where the engine backed around a tight corner, and the writer had act quickly to avoid losing their thumb between the cab and the tender. Photos of 622 and her sisters confirm the tender should be startlingly close to the cab. However, it would be a bit […]

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Tender lowered

Arguably, I should have built a whole new end beam, but replacing only the visible portion of the draft gear saved me from positioning eight bolts in two perfectly-aligned squares. It was a bit of a pyrrhic victory, however: assembling the shambles of shims and the mammoth metal plate that support the repositioned coupler and […]

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Slow modelling to the rescue

I’ve decided that the tender was indeed too high, making the 3D-printed body bolsters and end beam superfluous. Having rediscovered that photo of 624 wrecked at St Polycarpe, I know the body bolsters were the wrong shape anyway, so no great loss there. The end beam, however, needs reconfiguration to keep the coupler at the […]

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Paint and glue cupboard

For some reason, paint and glue does not want to sit in a drawer. It wants to migrate to the workbench and stay there. Maybe that’s because I can’t see the sides to identify the bottle when I pull open the drawer. Regardless of the reason, I had a little collection of fluxes, glues and […]

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