The next session will be during the Southern California Layout Tour in the South Bay August 19th, 2017! Hope you can stop by or join in the op session.
|Most of the open area will be an orange grove|
|More orange grove area with a small farm building in front|
|Most space will be an orange grove|
|Tearing out the offending track|
|Replacing the cork|
|Track replacement finished|
|You can barely see the tree grid|
|Orange trees for my grove|
Next up was adding power to the rear industry turnouts in Bakersfield. Joel has always been complaining about this for so long and I agree...it was a pain in the ass. But you know how excited I was to pull everything out from under the railroad and put my body through contortions just to hook up the turnout motors! Gee my two favorite things...installing tortoise motors and electrical and both at the same time! Yippee!
|Testing the circuit|
|Completed install. This switch is recessed into the fascia and a different switch used because this particular turnout is under dispatcher control as well.|
|One of the local control turnouts installed. Labeling yet to be formalized.|
|Here is the hook-up arrangement. I made several of these prior to installation.|
|Testing the circuit and LED|
|Testing the power to the frog before final installation|
|Example of the installation|
|Testing the circuit|
|Chris (left) and Joel (right) building the swing gate to the Traffic Center|
|Adding stiffening to the structure to hold the gate|
|Are they boxing?|
|Getting closer to being finished!|
|It actually opens|
Next project...way back about 100 years ago Joe Warner installed rotary switches to control the Bakersfield Yard throats. They work great, however, they are a little complicated for operators. Since late 2016 Dave Waterstreet has been wanting to update the yard throat controls for Bakersfield Yard to make things easier for the operators. Our schedules finally aligned in May 2017. The new push button panels will replace the original rotary switches and the panels look great. Unfortunately, they are electrically complicated with computer chips! Should one of them die, there isn't anything I can do about it and I would lose control of the yard! Not something I really want to entertain. A story...When I was a kid I asked my grandpa why he didn't have automatic windows in his car. He said it was because it was just one more thing that could break. We all now have automatic windows but the concern is the same. The new panels would not be fixable and they are not commercially made so I'm dead in the water should they break! Needless to say, I'm having second thoughts about the panels. That said, upon installation of the first one, it didn't operate. Is that a sign? Dave was beside himself. I was glad it didn't operate while he was still here and didn't die after he left. He lives in Portland so fixing things would not be easy.
|Original yard throat panels installed by Joe Warner...way back when!|
|The North End panel. The black dots are small pushbuttons.|
|Frustration! Don't worry Dave...I can't figure it out either!|
|I'm gonna get this to work even if I have to sit here all day!|
|Attempting the install|
Yet another project...the new JMRI dispatcher panel. While I've had a JMRI panel for many years, it had so many bandaids (updates) on it, it was difficult to operate, especially for a newbie. Not only that, but the original computer it was created on was failing and the panel needed to be installed on a new computer. The original panel was created using custom icons and those didn't transfer well to the new computer. Needless to say, things were a mess. Mark graciously offers to rebuild the new panel. Below is the old panel.
|The master, Mark Lestico, at work on the new JMRI ops panel|
|Another broken turnout!|
|Lastly, no matter how hard I work on the railroad, the boss is always micromanaging!|