Well, I've failed - or the lights have! First, the wires dropped out of the lamp next to the crossing and now, after putting a supply to the remaining three, only one works. Too bright anyway, so its back to the drawing board. Still, for eight quid, what did I expect?
A poor pic, of poor lighting, taken a few minutes ago.....
Too cold outside anyway - car iced up, trailer roof iced up (and solar panel) - I'll have to wait for the currant bun to warm things up.
I'll leave the lights in situ for the time being - I can always say, when asked if they work, that the electric bill wasn't paid!
You could just say that the council haven't wired them up yet. The village we lived in for 33 years had no street lights in the main street for years and then some were usddenly installed, but weren't connected up until 1 months later
So I revisited the street lighting. Crawling underneath the layout, it was obvious why only one lamp was working - broken wires again!
So I had to disconnect each light and the crawl out from underneath to remove them. The one that did work was relocated by the haystack and the others consigned to the workshop. I then dug out two pair of Busch steet lamps. I say two pair because they were linked (in parallel) to a small on each polarity.
I had bought them as spares for the station - I find they are a bit chunky for street lighting but, needs must!
Testing before installing them, only one worked! The screw-in bulbs were slightly loose and it was a struggle to get to tighten them. The lantern should remove from the column but, in two cases it did not.
After a bit of vandalism (frustration?), I got the attic top off by breaking its' connection to the glazed part. A piece of plastic tube was used (pushed tight on the bulb) to screw things back to where they should be. Then a further test showed that they worked so it was locate and glue in position. Once the glue had dried I crawled back underneath and connected the lamps up....
and one pic taken without the flash .....
So I'm getting there. Tomorrow there will be the odd bit to do like take the Solar panel off, load the car with tool bag, stepladders, a couple of BH battery locos (for emergency use), pack the solar panel for safe transportation, and check the trailer lights work because it will be Sunday before I can connect the car up[ because I need to visit the water scheme's pump house. Tyre pressures checked on car and trailer. Now going to have a rest!
It's nearly ten & a half years since I started constructing the trailer - during those years it's been extended and also had a new roof fitted. However, one thing I hadn't done during all that time, was to fit a mains hook-up - just relying on a extension cable from the garage trapped in the doorway!
As an effort to make things easier for myself, I decided recently to install that missing hook-up. Being a plywood body (with metal frame of course), I had to make some pattresses to fix inside. Holding them in position whilst I screwed them in place from outside wasn't easy!
So, I now have a double 13amp socket, an RCD consumer unit, plus the hook-up plug fitted through the bodywork.
The next job is to install some lighting - I'm using some 'under cabinet' strip lights (connector cables ordered from ebay).
With the trailer being in the barn for the next couple of weeks, I connected it up in there and already the batteries are topped up. The Solar panel is of great help too. I've ordered an extension lead for outside use (garage to trailer) but, meanwhile I've just connected up using the adaptor.
I ran a buried connection about ten years ago to the barn (for winter use - lighting and power tools) so I have no problem for current draw up to 13amps. So I can even have a 2kw fan heater in the trailer when my fingers go numb!
What it also means, is that I no longer have to unload locos for servicing after each show!
I think my trailer layout, with its' R1 curves and points, soon brings to light any problems with my purchases! A recent purchase (BH in Southern livery) has proved it. Tested in the garden a couple of weeks ago it seemed OK.....
When I tried it out in the trailer it didn't seem to be picking up the current properly and then proceeded to derail. So I decided to clean the wheels and give the loco a close inspection. I cradle the locos in a cardboard box when cleaning or repairing the chassis and wheels. Once I applied power it became obvious that the rear driving axle was wide of gauge!
Having had previous experience of this I knew that the nylon axle joiner cum gear wheel had cracked.
So. off with the chassis cover plate. Pulling each wheel out (without removing con rods was easy because the rods were plastic. Then it was a case of pulling out the plastic, cleaning it and inspecting for cracks. There were plenty so I needed to tighten the bosses up. Making some copper rings to press on was easy and was the same as my repairs to another BH (Blue one posted somewhere on the Forum). Re-assembled, put back together, and then tested. So that pair of wheels was back to normal but, after a few seconds, another problem developed .
The front axle soon came out of gauge! Now the axle joiners on the front and middle axles are made of a different plastic - rather slippy stuff you ask me!
The joiner also acts for the "chuff" sounder - two metal strips fastended to the joiner give two chuffs per revolution (I think). Because of the nature of the moulding, with the metal strips being fastened in the ends, it was difficult to compress the plastic back to the correct diameter. I used the same method as the back axle but, in doing so, I obliterated the fastening positions for the strips....
...../ (you can see how tiny the screws are!). So no chuffing noise! You can just see the copper ring on one of the joiner pressed into it...
As I have already said, I think the plastic is a little slippy. Because of that one of the wheels would stay in position so I have glued it! It is re-assembled and, a rather feeble, pull test seems the glue might have worked. So it is awaiting testing - maybe today!
So, having waited (and waited) for days to test it out I finally got the Round Tu-it today! No problems - wheels stayed in place whilst I ran a few trips around....
I had looked at taking a front wheelset from a spare chassis. I did take it out but there were major differences - for one thing it was a solid axle with insulated wheel centres and it had no bearings! The axle just ran in the plastic! If the present repair fails then I will saw off the stub axles and bore out the wheel centres and make a solid axle to suit the brass bearings!