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April '98
This page describes work accomplished on the new TMRC layout during the month of April 1998, as taken from the descriptions posted to the club mailing list.
April 4

Work continued on Gifford city. The last of the platform extensions were build by Andy Miller, and the street layout is now under way.

Meanwhile Jeff Birkner, Dick Lord, and James Knight worked hard to get power to the layout in the center of the room.


April 7

Additional wiring was added under the tower. A cardboard mockup was made for the street layout in the Gifford City station area. Work began on the sidings for the produce center and the newspaper plant, two industries which will be just outside the boundaries of P-yard.

Two pictures were added to the page: "LayoutL" and "LayoutR". Both are shots from the tower taken on March 24, 1998. "LayoutL" shows the turntable and belongs to the left of the one that shows the Gifford City buildings ("LayoutR"). There are two loops around the tower. A train leaving Gifford City curves around the buildings in LayoutR and proceeds left into LayoutL passing the entrance to the turntable. The train then passes around the upper loop and returns to Gifford City (LayoutR) on tracks parallel to those it just used. If the train then passed through Gifford City, it would pass down the left side of LayoutL and drop down to the lower loop around the tower, passing under the roundhouse. It would then return to Gifford City (LayoutR) on tracks parallel to those it just used.
LayoutL LayoutR

You may click on the images to see larger versions.


April 11

John Purbrick worked on the industrial siding in the east entrance to Gifford City. He had started work on this siding previously, but was mistakenly not reported, sorry John! This siding will, at some point, have a 'Y' turnout, of course, hand-laid! Meanwhile Andy Miller continued to work on the platforms of Gifford City. All the wood pieces are now here, with the next steps being to fit them and then paint them. Ben FrantzDale continued to work in patching old sections of layout, especially when 'cracks' appeared in the scenery.

Meanwhile S&P (Jeff Birkner & James Knight) continued to distribute power around the layout.


April 14

John Purbrick continued his work on the sidings that serve the proposed produce plant. The coloration of the ties and ballast is based on a recent examination of the Grand Junction line nearby.

Jeff Birkener, Alvar Saenz-Otero and James Knight worked on additional wiring under the layout. Also a concrete anchor was placed in the ceiling to provide additional support for the cable tray that carries wiring from the System area to the layout. Joe Onorato and John McNamara worked on the designs for the walls of the tower A design in which the walls slope outward to provide increased knee room, provide increased desk space, and provide anchor points from which to suspend scenic backdrops, is gaining favor.


April 18

Andy Miller, John McNamara, Bill Onorato, and Alvar Saenz Otero discussed the production of a commemorative car for the 50th anniversary of TMRC. Andy also continued work, together with Ishak Akyuz, on the platforms of the new Gifford City station. John Purbrick continued his work on the industrial sidings at the east exit of Gifford City.

Alvar and Ishak took out all the old switch motors (actually solenoids) and all the old point in preparation to replace them with tortoise machines. Jeff Birkner finished most of the power distribution work under the layout. James Knight, Jeff and Alvar then worked on the last steps needed for the new relay boards of System 3. A 'final-beta' design is expected next Saturday so that the boards go into production before summer starts.


April 21

Ishak and John P worked on converting some of the P-yard switches to use Tortoise switch machines. These machines eliminate the need for adjustment and can be driven by the new electronic switch throwing system without need of extra interface components. John M did some further work on the roundhouse rehabilitation.


April 25

Bill Onorato and John Shriver worked on the trolley bridge that crosses the east end of Gifford City. Ishak Akyus, Ben FrantzDale and Alvar Saenz-Otero worked on the switches in P-Yard. All but 4 of the old switches now have the new style points. Also, Ishak installed two more tortoise machines. Andy Miller brought in the new cars for the 50th anniversary series. He began to paint the golden areas already. Dick Lord checked that all the existant track was correctly spiked ... and found a record breaking section of 17 ties without a single spike! These sections are now fixed :-)

Alvar helped James Knight check the PCB design for the new switch relay cards. A final check this coming Tuesday by John Purbrick should be the last thing needed before the cards go into production. After checking the design James and Alvar worked to get the big loop up and running again.


April 28

Ishak and John P continued their work on converting the P-yard switches to Tortoise machines, with some help from Alvar, Claude, and John M. Andy Miller painted and scribed some of the new P-yard platforms. Jeff Birkner brought in some relays for the new switch control cards, and James checked component placement clearances on a full size copy of the control card layout. James and John M also cleaned track and loco wheels in preparation for Alvar's Thursday presentation to visiting alumni.



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