A fairly basic setup for spraying models. The key component was a stove hood with a working exhaust fan and built-in light (tested before taking!)
A simple 3 sided structure holds the hood and it is supported on a rudimentary table at standing height for the user.
Air is supplied from a 9kg ex. bbq gas bottle. There are multiple YouTube sites showing how to do that safely and correctly. The bottle is re-filled from my workshop compressor.
A simple bracket for an Iwata double acting air brush.
The hood was thoroughly cleaned to remove the old grease buildup. It has a protected fluoro light and a multi-speed fan that shifts a whack of air on the high speed setting.
I replaced the filter material with some obtained from a local auto spraying company. They gave me a small offcut.
An adaptor was cobbled together to carry the exhaust air outside the workshop. It has a self closing flap on the outside to keep unwanted visitors out. I also added and old flouro desk lamp to get a bit more light on the subject.
A nearby cupboard holds the necessary bits and pieces.
I use a technique described by Ian Dunn at a Modelling the Railways of NSW event.
The rolling stock or loco holder sits high enough so I can spray under it and it rotates to allow coverage of all surfaces. It can also accept track power so that the drive train of locos can be carefully sprayed while it is in motion (hence the elastic bands to keep the model in place).
Here is a mate’s Fleischman loco getting ready for the mechanism to be painted.
This post combines new material with some hidden away in other posts. The photo below was of a common speaker such as those supplied with Loksound decoders. They are quite suitable for large body diesels and other larger models that have enough room.
This was the 25mm (1″) 4Ω 1.5Watt speaker and enclosure used for a 42 class diesel project. A silly but important point is make sure you solder the speaker wires to the speaker terminals before you seal it in place!
It is very important to make sure that the enclosure is fully SEALED around, and behind the speaker. The bigger the enclosure, the better but we are usually stymied by lack of space. See below for using Canopy Glue for sealing.
One of the best speakers I have used is the so-called “Sugar Cube” speaker. With even a small enclosure, they are remarkably compact combined with good sound quality. The ESU version is 12mm x 14mm and 5.5mm thick:
I prepare some styrene strips equal to the height required and use a small machined metal block as an aid to assemble the pieces using a styrene cement.
The next photo shows one of the best TIPs that I have. If you are using super glue for assembling anything, use a small piece of teflon bearing material (or even thicker plastic) and drill a small depression into it. Put a drop of super glue in to the recess and it will last up to an hour or more without going off! It also helps when applying styrene cement. [PTFE teflon sheet can be purchased on eBay by searching for ptfe sheet]
To seal the speakers into their enclosure, I prefer to use “Canopy Glue” as it is sticky and remains in place, plus, it dries clear. As with the super glue, the best means of applying it is with a thin applicator such as a T Pin or a tooth pick:
THINK OUTSIDE THE SQUARE:
The speaker enclosure doesn’t have to be rectangular – consider a cylindrical one to fit inside the smokebox of a steam loco. I have fitted them to brass steam locos including 30 class, 36 class and whitemetal 32 class. Like this:
The curved part has been cut from a small section of plastic pipe which needs to be filed flat as in the previous photo. Two end plates have to be shaped to fit.
The benefit of the smokebox speaker is that the sound is coming from the correct part of the loco. The photos below show a 25mm speaker fitted to a custom housing in the tender of a 36 class brass loco. The sound was brilliant – but it was clearly radiating from the wrong end of the loco.
Fitting the cylindrical speaker can be difficult. In my brass 30 class (small) loco, the smokebox door was loose so I was able to remove it. For the larger 36 class boiler, I was able to insert the speaker from the firebox end of the boiler tube:
THERE ARE OTHER OPTIONS
This is an iPhone 4S speaker purchased from eBay. In this case I have split the speaker to see what was happening inside. As I understand it the chamber on the right is an acoustic cavity to improve the sound. The port where the sound exits is shown with a pink arrow, just below the speaker itself.
Here we have a 40 class diesel look-alike modified from a Kato RSD4/5 model. I like this model as it is well engineered and very smooth and powerful with 2 large flywheels. The tight space in the narrow hood filled with mechanism and weights meant I couldn’t easily fit a sugar-cube speaker but and iPhone 4S speaker sat nicely on top of the motor.
A close up shows the sound port on the RH end of the speaker.
Here is a sound file using an iPhone 4S speaker with an ESU V4 Loksound decoder programmed with an ALCO 12cyl 244 (FT) #73401 sound file. The loco sound volume is quite low and would be deafening if run at full volume.
I note that iPhone 4S speakers are currently (24/3/19) available on eBay from as little as $1.58 ea (+ GST) and with free postage.
For an even smaller loco, consider other iPhone speakers. The first 3 work but you would need to experiment. The iPhone 5 speaker may be a good option for a small loco.
Solder directly to the contact springs.
iPhone 5 speaker showing the parts that can be removed.
If you have had any interesting success with speakers, I would be happy to post that on this blog (with acknowledgement). Rick
Points /turnouts on my layout were initially operated manually using a wire-in-tube mechanism. There are currently 44 points on the layout and I started converting to servo control about half-way through.
The wire-in-tube (WIT) method I used worked very well and is shown to the right.
The mechanism is relatively easily fabricated and the cover is removable with one screw to allow easy adjustment of the point blades at the fascia.
It will handle a second wire to allow push/pull operation of 2 points in a crossover.
If there is any interest, contact me and I will add a section on the design and fabrication of the WIT method and the fascia mounted lever frames..
I changed to servo operation for the following reasons:
with this type of mechanical operation, control panels would not be able to operate the points (there are 4 mini panels on the layout).
the system selected allows precision adjustment of each point blade; variable speed of movement; position indication
servos can be installed from the top of a 50mm (+) foam layout
points can be controlled from a central position; a local panel; by a computer; as a route by changing many points at once and other options.
the system I use is based on the UK MERG model. Circuits vary from simple to complex.
Plus – I like working with electronics.
I have had some of the servos become very noisy in operation which I believe may be due to their being relatively poor quality CLONES. This ARTICLE sheds some light on the differences between “counterfeit” and original MG90S servos.
I will report back on my findings.
MERG sells kits for the above 2 projects and they cost just £1.55ea +postage from the UK for MERG members. Almost all of the more sophisticated CBUS kits are based on professionally manufactured Printed Circuit Board (PCBs) and usually kits of the necessary parts are available or you can buy the parts locally.
There are other alternatives:
The device shown to the right is a ” MegaPoints Controller” by a UK company and could be very good for those people not confident in building PCBs themselves. I have not used it or seen it in operation but it comes ready to connect to 12 servos and has 12 corresponding switch inputs. Here is their Website and here is a YouTube Demo There are 2 videos in sequence. Cost is said to be £50 in the UK.
I also notice that DCC Concepts have an “above board” system that looks interesting for someone not interested in a DIY approach – Cobalt SS.