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Archive for October 7th, 2013

Durango Yard Track Work

After a summer of relative inactivity on the D,D&SNGRR, I am finally pushing myself to get going again. Several factors: I'm going to be doing the cutting for the rest of the benchwork and the track sub-roadbed down below my layout room in my un-heated garage, and in Minnesota the season for being able to work under those circumstances is rapidly drawing to a close.  I have ordered some High Density, color-changing LED lighting for behind the back drop.  I decided to go with HitLights.com because they sell a higher density RGB LED string at a lower price than Micro-Mark, but I am going to get the Micro-Mark "Topside Creeper" ladder; it will be the only way I can reach the back of the Durango section of the layout.  I have a couple of spots where the backdrop turned out just a little low for what will go in front of it, so Dave Burgess of Backdrop Junction made me two little extensions I can layer in.  More on that later.  I need to wire up some track work so I can play with the Digitrax control system I bought last January.

After a summer of relative inactivity on the D,D&SNGRR, I am finally pushing myself to get going again. Several factors: I’m going to be doing the cutting for the rest of the benchwork and the track sub-roadbed down below my layout room in my un-heated garage, and in Minnesota the season for being able to work under those circumstances is rapidly drawing to a close. I have ordered some High Density, color-changing LED lighting for behind the back drop. I decided to go with HitLights.com because they sell a higher density RGB LED string at a lower price than Micro-Mark, but I am going to get the Micro-Mark “Topside Creeper” ladder; it will be the only way I can reach the back of the Durango section of the layout. I have a couple of spots where the backdrop turned out just a little low for what will go in front of it, so Dave Burgess of Backdrop Junction made me two little extensions I can layer in, and I need to wire up some track work so I can play with the Digitrax control system I bought last January.

Whenever I lay more track I seem to change the track plan.  Some of that is due to getting used to how much space things take in O-scale; at other times it is due to new ideas about how to arrange things.

Whenever I lay more track I seem to change the track plan. Some of that is due to getting used to how much space things take in O-scale; at other times to new ideas about how to arrange things.  Some times there are sacrifices, and I have to weight the options, but I rarely regret changes when I have to make them.  The plan has become a generalized guide rather than an exact blueprint.  On this new set-up for the Durango yard, I tried to move things as close to the front edge of the layout as possible, and I succeeded in getting a lot more of the action within my 32 inch reach.  The Topside Creeper will take care of the rest.

Most of the track work is laid out in this view, and a few of the structures set in place.

Most of the track work is laid out in this view, and a few of the structures set in place.  The whole “table” will eventually get turned 90 degrees and set into the narrow end of the room seen behind.  Unfinished tracks will continue around the corner to run up the long side of the room on the left in this photo.

In this view from the other end of the roughly 4x8 ft. table, you can see the trolley track (standard HO Code 83) that I re-routed inside the turn back curve of my Micro-Scale Code 83 On30 track.

In this view from the other end of the roughly 4×8 ft. table, you can see the trolley track (standard HO Code 83) that I re-routed inside the turn back curve of my Micro-Engineering Code 83 On30 track, so it wouldn’t have to cross all of the yard tracks to get to the residential area of Durango.

I'm using Loctite Power Grab construction adhesive to secure the track

I’m using Loctite Power Grab construction adhesive to secure the track on to the homasote base.  It really does grab quickly; the push pins would hardly be necessary, but I’m not gluing down the turnouts yet, so they hold everything in alignment.  My wife came in this afternoon and said of the push pins, “Oh, those are pretty.”

Since this is all a railroad yard area, I am not using the California Roadbed that I will be using out on the main line.  The ties in this area will be buried in cinder ballast almost up to the level of the track.  This will also help to conceal the different track styles I am using.

Since this is all a railroad yard area, I am not using the California Roadbed that I will be using out on the main line. The ties in this area will be buried in cinder ballast almost up to the level of the track. This will also help to conceal the different track styles I am using.  The water tower shown here will eventually be located in Silverton.  I am going to build a typical round D&RG water tower for Durango.

That is also the case for this small store, but I put it here for the photogenic value for today.

That is also the case for this small store, but I put it here for the photogenic value for today.  The cardboard retaining wall around the turn back curve will come down once I have the whole table in its final position.  Until then, it prevents locomotive tragedies.

I'm feeding every track section with power from 18 ga. solid track feeders.

I’m feeding every track section with power from 18 ga. solid track feeders.  They will connect to 14 ga. stranded bus wire with 3M Scotchlok Insulation Displacement Connectors.  By feeding every piece of track I can leave the rail joiners un-soldered to facilitate thermal expansion and contraction of the track.

These scratch-built drop bottom coal gondolas will deliver coal through between the tracks grating.

These scratch-built drop bottom gondolas will deliver coal through between-the-tracks grating.

The Maintenance of Way shed got moved to make room for the Icing Dock.  See previous track plans.

The Maintenance of Way shed got moved to make room for the Icing Dock. See previous track plans.

The Icing Dock got moved to simplify the track work to the Freight House and the Stock Pens.

The Icing Dock got moved to simplify the track work to the Freight House and the Stock Pens.

The Freight House is now one track closer to the front edge of the layout.

The Freight House is now one track closer to the front edge of the layout.

The Caboose track had to be sacrificed so the reefers could reach the Icing Dock.  The cabooses will just have to find space elsewhere, or share this track.  Durango yard switching gets more and more interesting.

The Caboose track had to be sacrificed so the reefers could reach the Icing Dock. The cabooses will just have to find space elsewhere, or share this track. Durango yard switching gets more and more interesting.

One thing that has never changed is the location of the Durango Depot; it is still right at the front edge of the layout.

One thing that has never changed is the location of the Durango Depot; it is still right at the front edge of the layout.

#28 approaches the Coaling Tower.

#28 approaches the Coaling Tower.

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