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O Gauge Monthly Photo Polls:

November 2018 Winner!

"Shawmut coal train."
by member Richard E

Vote Now!    Photo Poll: Dec. 2018

Submit Now!     Photo Poll: Jan. 2019

Past Polls   Winner's Gallery

Most-Recent O Gauge Topics:

Richard E
Topics: 71   Replies: 32
posted on Nov 8, 2018:

A set of brand new Alco FAs is being serviced at the Lincoln Park fuel racks. This is normally EMD territory and the hostlers are familiar with Alcoâ??s steam power but are all curious about their diesels.
Brand New FAs
Richard E
Topics: 71   Replies: 32
posted on Oct 25, 2018:

A Shawmut Russian Decapod Heading to Kessler No. 2 with a train of empty hoppers. The will pick full loads and head north to Hornell NY.
Shawmut coal train.
Topics: 72   Replies: 126
posted on Sep 8, 2018:

B&O "Speedliner" RDC number 1961 slows upon crossing Highway 5, for a stop at Rossiter Junction on the Baltimore & New York Railway.
West Bound Local
Topics: 72   Replies: 126
posted on May 17, 2018:

They are back! Well, that Mercury convertible hauling New Moon trailer is not a train, but in the "Long, Long, Trailer movie it was referenced as such when 'Nicky" was learning to handle the rig.
This is a repeat entry. It was posted for August 2017 but this site closed from August to late October, so no votes were cast or counted.
So, I thought I would try it again. I'm hoping some of you will also post photos for June 2018!
The trailer is scratch built in styrene and hauled by a 1954 Mercury Sun Valley, since a '53 (used in the movie) was not available. The car and trailer wear accurate California tag numbers.
The rig has just passed over the Baltimore & New York main line grade crossing on Highway 5, on its way to a new adventure.

"Think of it as a train - 40' of train!"
Topics: 72   Replies: 126
posted on Apr 25, 2018:

Back when coal was king - heating homes, buildings and for small businesses like my father's bakery in the 1940's and 50's were the customers. Local coal dealers had dump pits with silos or, a dump trestle. Anthracite was the main coal used in the northeastern US, dug from mines in NE Pennsylvania. Coal dealers stored it in various sizes such as egg, pea and buckwheat. When a carload was delivered it had to be carefully spotted where that size coal was to be dumped. Each bay of a dealer's coal dump trestle usually held a specific size of coal. Not good to mix them up!

Spotting the drop
Topics: 45   Replies: 64
posted on Apr 10, 2018:

This will be a crew car to go with the crane that I just finished.
It will have a small cabin on one end with tool boxes along the sides in front of the cabin.

I'm using a short base made out of aluminum from an old Lionel tender for the frame of the flat car that the cab will be mounted to.

The deck for the flat car is made from a sheet of styrene that has grooves in it to represent boards.

Searching thru my collection of trucks, I found this pair of old lief spring archbar trucks that will be perfect for it.

The are mounted on the underside of the flat car.

The end sills and couplers are mounted on each end.

These caboose steps will be mounted on one end to make it easier for getting on and off the car.

The area is cut out on each side of the deck where the steps will go.

Then the steps are mounted in place.

The cab is going to be built out of 1/8 inch plywood.
I've cut the opening in one of the sidewalls for a window and I'm machining the edges to make the opening square using a 1/16 diameter end mill.

When all of openings are cut out of the side panels, they are then glued together.

The sidewall of the cab are all glued to the floor.

Gluing the roof on the cab.

Strips of plastic and wood are glued to the edges of the roof to trim it out.
Plastic " L " trim is glued on the corners and strips of plastic are glued to the sides for the bracing.
Small nails are put in to represent the carriage bolts that hold the trim and bracing strips on.
The doors and windows are all glued in place.

The walkways have been added to the roof of the cab.

Making the railing for the end of the car is next on the list.
The holes are being drilled into the end sill for mounting a piece of brass angle that the railing will be attached to.

Here I am using a small hand drill to hold the tap for putting threads in the holes for 00-90 screws.
These screws are only .040 diameter and I have to be very - very careful when tapping the holes in the pot-metal end sill.
The piece of brass angle is to the top right in the photo and the two screws that I'll be using to fasten it in place are at the tip of the pencil.

Here is how the brass angle fits on the end sill.

The two halves of the railing are bent to shape and the piece of brass angle is soldered to the bottom ends of the railing.

Then the center supports are soldered onto the railing.

The finished railing is mounted on the end sill.

Here I'm soldering a piece of brass angle to the back side of the ladder so I can fasten the ladder onto the end sill.

The bottom of the ladder is fastened on with a small screw and the top is fastened on with two small nails.
The two hand rails are mounted on top of the foot board to finish the mounting of the ladder.

The brake wheel has been mounted on the opposite side of the railing.

Using a small end mill for making the hole for the mounting stub on the smokestack that I'm using for this.

The smokestack is pressed into the hole in the roof.

The ladder on this end of the cab has also been mounted in place and the two hand rails are fastened onto the foot board on the roof.

Here is the finished crew car.

I set the crew car and the crane outside and took a couple of photos.

MOW crew car
Topics: 17   Replies: 16
posted on Mar 26, 2018:

MTH AIU relay outputs can be used to activate the momentary pushbuttons on wireless remote control transmitter fobs. The AIU SW(itch) port outputs close for exactly 1/2 sec when the Straight or Diverge button is pressed on the DCS remote. The AIU ACC(essory) port output closes for as long as the ACT button is pressed, or indefinitely if the ON/OFF latching buttons are pressed.

On eBay and elsewhere, there are many low-cost transmitter and receiver components using the somewhat dated but tried-and-true garage-door wireless technology using 315 MHz or 433 MHz RF and basic Amplitude Shift Keying (ASK) coding. These products use the venerable 2262/2272 chip set which can be configured to generate over a thousand unique addresses - enough for any practical train layout.

An example of transmitter and receivers:

For just a few dollars, you get a 4 channel remote fob and a 4 output receiver. The transmitter is powered by a 12V battery. The receiver requires 5V DC; and one of its 4 digital outputs is activated when the corresponding button is pressed on the transmitter. The low-current digital outputs could then drive a relay or transistor to control the remote load. Or, there are relay receiver modules that integrate one (or more) relays.

The idea here is to demonstrate how to attach the AIU to a wireless fob so that ALL remote control can be performed from the DCS handheld remote...rather than having multiple handheld control devices.

In the above 4-button remote fob, there are 4 momentary push-button switches. So the idea is to simply tether the 2-terminals for each push-button to the AIU. As it turns out, one of the terminals for each push-button is in common. This common wire means only 5 wires need to be tethered out to the AIU. This common wire will go to the "IN" terminal of the SW(itch) or ACC(essory) ports. And the "IN" terminals will be daisy-chained at the AIU.

Here is an ACC port in action using 2 buttons to control 2 of the outputs of the 5V receiver. There is enough output current on the receiver to drive a small LED. As discussed earlier, the receiver output would more likely drive a relay or transistor in a practical application. Refer to another thread showing how this exact receiver module controls the action of an MTH operating reefer boxcar.

Note that it is unwise to mistakenly press the ON button when using the ACC port. This would continuously activate the remote control transmitter (note red LED on transmitter) until turned OFF.

This video shows a SW(itch) port controlling two pushbuttons. The take-away is the exact 1/2 second AIU relay closure when the Straight or Diverge control is pressed is long enough to generate a wireless burst that the receiver can detect and decode.

In the above video, the relay module is shown operating in different modes. These relays generally provide 3 operating modes. 1) Momentary, 2) Toggle, 3) Set-Reset.

In Momentary, the relay is closed as long as the button is pressed; this is like the ACT button of an Accessory Port.

In Toggle, the relay closes and opens on successive button presses (same button). There is no equivalent mode in the AIU. Note that with this method, the Straight and Diverge controls of a single SW(itch) port can control 2 ON/OFF relays.

In Set-Reset, the relay closes on one button press and the relay opens on a different button press. This is similar to the ON-OFF (separate buttons) behavior of an ACC port.

MTH AIU: activating wireless fob remote c...

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