Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Panel- Part 2

Work continues on the dispatcher's panel. The cabinet is just about finished and ready for paint. I still need to add pieces of Masonite to either end and fill in the screw holes.

All of the plugs have been added to the panel and the Masonite for the track occupancy diagram has been attached.

All that remains to do on the panel is add the 4-40 nuts and bolts to plug the small holes beneath each unused lever mounting position. Then its off to Randy Sieler's shop for a coat of olive green paint in a shade that will replicate what Union Switch & Signal used on their panels. Of course, there's a price for this service. And that price is a couple of hand-laid curved crossovers for the B&O/PC Cincinnati West Railroad.

And I've spent the last several weeks drawing up the electrical circuits for the various switches and levers. The diagram below shows the wiring for the turnout lever.

The diagram includes all of the electrical connections that will be needed along with the entries into the Signal By Spreadsheet software. Once Gerry Albers straightened me out on some of the nomenclature, i.e. active hi, active lo, etc. associated with his SBS product, the rest was relatively painless. And he also kindly reviewed each of the circuits. Without his help, I could have blown up all kinds of stuff and made clouds of smoke that would have been second in size and magnitude only to what Smokey Doll can create!

Monday, July 9, 2018

The Oven Box

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while understand just how much I enjoy building freight cars from the 1970's. My good friend John Miller has one of the most extensive and amazing freight car fleets representing many, many different types of cars that were running in the mid-to-late 1970's. All of the cars are beautifully weathered, too. 

I have long coveted John's freight cars and the running gag among all of us locals is that I take empty boxes to his work sessions and op sessions and fill them with cars. Well, it's usually a gag. At least some of the time. Whenever John comes over to run on the CWE, those "liberated" cars are hidden in the old west end staging yard that has been abandoned. Fortunately, it was abandoned because I couldn't get to it. Which means John can't get to it either, so what I've absconded with so far is safe.

Prior to John's last operating session, I asked that everyone bring some boxes for me. I mentioned that we needed them to move some stuff in order to fool John. Most people caught on and brought a kit box or two. Several people didn't, and one of who didn't seem to get it was Bill Doll. He took me out to his pickup truck to show me all of the boxes he brought for me. I almost felt bad for him. Almost. But of all the people in our group, he's the first that should have caught on.

So a week or so ago, Bill sent me an email about the new oven that had been delivered to his house. He said it came in a great big box and that he would be happy to drop it off for us. I asked that he send it to Michigan for us and offered to pay for the shipping. When we returned home today, the box below was in the mail.

I was almost afraid to open it. Recall that I had received some really special rolling stock from Bill in the past (see this post: So there was no telling what might be in the shoe box. But open it I did, and here's what was inside.

Bill was also kind enough to include a thoughtful note. 

And if that wasn't enough, he even provided special instructions for reassembling the box. Each piece has been carefully lettered and numbered so that even I might be able to get it all back together correctly. What a guy!

I just can't wait to get the whole box back together! Too bad I have to wait for the remaining 12 boxes to arrive. And I sure hope they don't each cost $7.25 to ship as this one did. Otherwise, I'll have to sell some of John's cars on eBay just to pay for the postage.

I really should have known better when I sent out the email asking for boxes. With the crowd that I run with, I'm fortunate that this is all of the damage that occurred. So far. And as always with this group, be careful what you ask for. Very careful.