Sorry for the lack of updates, we've been working on the layout until
too late at night and I've been too tired to write the reports. But, here goes
a summary of tons of progress since the last report:
Remember those switch cards we were building? Well, they are all installed
in the layout now. Plus Switch Card #7, the first one into staging from
Gifford City, is now 80% wired! Between Jeff and Alvar they developed the
full wiring diagram for all of staging. This is making it much easier to
actually install all the feeders, terminal blocks, and wiring in general.
We may have everything wired by the Open House! (which means that with
all the switches 'normal' we should have a working loop in staging by
the Open House!)
And how about Berkmanville? Its comming along! Further design work went
into it, to make sure that its feasible to have the paint area and BK.
Meanwhile Malcolm and Alvar have been working on the down slope for the
BK cuttoff. Malcolm has also began to design the support for the mainline
Then there is the Coca Bubblie area and Gifford City. Ed installed 1/4"
plywood on all the area under the telephone building, so that the buildings
have a foundation to put them level with the street. Plus, he refinished
the building next to Coca Bubblie. Meanwhile Bill continues the detailing
of the Vegetable Oil facility. JP has been working on the ramp up 100th
street, including the installation of the fake troley track. He also has
worked on detailing other sections of the Gifford City area, including
adding signals in some areas.
John Shriver has finsihed the main wiring of all the blocks of the trolley
system! A trolley can now run all around the system non-stop. Therefore,
he began to test methods for paving the streets again. The street paving
should give Gifford City a finished look really fast!
James has been working on the software and hardware for System 3. He already
has an alpha version of a display and track. There is lots more to do, but
it seems that System 3 is becoming a reality! The real test will be when
System 3 is used to operate the Staging Yard... the yard will not be wired
to System 2, it will be the testing ground for System 3. Of course, if
anybody else wants to get involed with the System 3 design, I'm sure James
will appreciate the help!
Alvar continued the painting of the Green Building elements over a weekend,
with quite good success (a little too yellow this time, maybe). But the
elements are now ready to begin the construction of the front faces of the
building. Maybe a partially built one will be there by the Open House?
So, in summary, over this past month the trolley system main loop has
been completed and pavement work has started. The Staging Yard electrical
work is well under way, with the posibility of functionality by the Open
House. And Gifford City continues to gain detailed all over.
Ed, James & Alvar began the day by entretaining a Boy Scouts troop. It
was almost a mockup Open House, with up to 20+ people in the clubroom at
once! The show went really well; the parents and kids were all very
amused with the layout.
Then the work began. Malcom made the first major cut for the helix by
creating the downslope from staging to Berkmanville. This section will
hold the two mainline tracks out of BK going up to Sawyer and 'the rest
of the world'. On the other side of the room Ed continued to detail the
Coca Bubblie area, Bill worked on the vegetable oil facility, and Andy
on Caveat Emptor. Ed also took two bags of empty cans and got our deposit
back from Star.
James worked on System 3 design; he and Jonh Barrington discussed a GUI
for it. The GUI is still on the preliminary design stages, but the
main background processes that do all the work are close to completion!
Alvar worked hard on getting the Staging Yard wired. All of the feeder
wires are now installed. All of the X-block relays are also in place.
The next step is to connect the terminal blocks to the switch cards.
Jeff assited Alvar towards the end of the day (or night).