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January '10
This page describes work accomplished on the new TMRC layout during the month of January 2010, as taken from the descriptions posted to the club mailing list.
January 2

TMRC now owns a steam locomotive, our first in who knows how long (except BITCo #1/2, which seems to have wandered away).
It's the Bachmann Spectrum model of the Baldwin 2-8-0 ("Consolidation") which was made in more or less the same form for many railroads, and used from the beginning of the 20th century until the last steam locos retired. Our engine is undecorated, ready to have TNP markings applied, and maybe some weathering done..


January 9

John McNamara was so appreciative of David Lambeth's components that he set up a new cabinet to hold them.
Do you wonder what's in the drawer maked "cats, dogs"?


January 16

I thought--thought--I saw a giant bottle...

Man, less open it!

Fortunately someone still has steady hands. Alex was installing switch stands, and found one turnout wasn't working. He traced a bad solder joint.
The bottle vanished, but they've come to admire the new vegetation around Kirk Reeves' old tenement buildings from years ago. That bare patch will be Mr Borrelli's vegetable garden.
As we all know, there's no such thing as the wrong side of the tracks, just too far away.


January 20

David Lambeth sent another parcel, this time mostly raw materials rather than intricate models.
We were able to get the new 2-8-0 locomotive cheap, because it had a missing screw in the valve gear. John McNamara contributed a replacement from an eyeglass repair kit that he had, and here it is in place (3rd driver, below the air pump). Andy, is the eccentric properly set?


January 23

This is a new paved area for the Gifford Bulk Transfer facility. The foundation in the corner of the lot is for the office (under construction by Bill Onorato) and there will also be a small building housing a steam generator for unloading products that need to be heated in order to flow out of the cars.
Inspired by the sight of the blacktop at the bulk transfer facility, John P made a new vehicle entrance for F Yard.
Alex Keck has now made two beautiful little switch stands in Middle Heights.
Are they animated? Of course they are! Here's the linkage that does the work. (See "Videos" for an animation that shows how it works.)


January 27

We've been experimenting with some RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) devices. An installation was made in the entrance to Staging; here you can see a section of plywood which was removed and then re-used with the RFIDF antenna glued to its surface.
The plywood block is ready to be reinstalled. Once the roadbed is replaced above it, the block and antenna can still be removed from below.
The antenna is below this piece of perfboard.
This is the electronic board that drives and reads the antenna. It communicates via serial link. It's just a coincidence that there is a "Quad cab driver board" right next to it.
Everything has been put back together; the location of the antenna needs to be labeled so we know where it is!
This bad picture shows the best location for the RFID tags: glued to the truck kingpins. Tags on the underside of cars work, but we noticed some missed reads. This needs some more work.



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Tech Model Railroad Club of MIT
MIT Room N52-118
265 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

+1 617 253-3269
x3-3269 (on campus)
Email: tmrc-web@mit.edu
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