Jump to content

Nominations for Tractor of the Month
Garden Tractors and Parts on eBay



Photo
- - - - -

Time With the Garden Railroad


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted July 05, 2015 - 07:51 PM

Finally got some time to spend on the garden railroad. With all the rain this spring did not get to the railroad between the garden and trying to keep up with the mowing. After 3 long days I finally got 90% of the weeds pull or cut out and a lot of Preen down to stop further germination of seeds. Every spring I need to replace ballast and some fine rock up against the 2 X 6 that supports the track. this year it was a little worse due to all the rain this spring. I put down about 115# of 5/16" ground granite (red). I use waterproof glue diluted down with about 20% water. I put the glue down first and the ballast on top. this is applied along both edges of the ties.

This brings up a couple questions:

What does the majority of you use for ballast, or do you use ballast?

What do you support your track on?

Is your track at ground level or elevated? If elevated how much?

What is your preferred form of power to operate your trains? Standard analog Dc? DCC? Battery? Battery back up? Radio signals? IR signal?

Be interesting to see what the majority of people use.

I was using a Crest Train Engineer until the receiver went South. Now I am building and Locolinc system. Waiting for the final touches on the Cow Cal NW-2 unit with receiver and sound. Will power it will 20 V drill driver battery. Can hardly wait to get back in operation again.
  • tinbender7, holdenboy1960, Bolens800uk and 1 other said thanks

#2 boyscout862 ONLINE  

boyscout862
  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 8923
  • 9,803 Thanks
  • 7,543 posts
  • Location: N.E. Connecticut

Posted July 06, 2015 - 08:02 AM

I put away my Lionel trains about 50 years ago. While I was in the Army, my mother tried to give them away. Fortunately, nobody wanted the big trains in 1970s. Only played with with my son and his Little Tykes ride-on train when he was small. It sits in the attic now waiting for grandchildren.

 

Your setup sounds very interesting. Please post some pics. Good Luck, Rick


Edited by boyscout862, July 06, 2015 - 08:03 AM.


#3 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted July 06, 2015 - 08:12 AM

I put away my Lionel trains about 50 years ago. While I was in the Army, my mother tried to give them away. Fortunately, nobody wanted the big trains in 1970s. Only played with with my son and his Little Tykes ride-on train when he was small. It sits in the attic now waiting for grandchildren.

 

Your setup sounds very interesting. Please post some pics. Good Luck, Rick

The attic is not really a good place to store those trains.  That grease that is packed around the gears, etc. will dry out and get hard as all get out with the heat.  When you do get them down they will have to be fully cleaned and lubed up to run.  Damage may have already been done but lets hope not.


  • boyscout862 said thank you

#4 boyscout862 ONLINE  

boyscout862
  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 8923
  • 9,803 Thanks
  • 7,543 posts
  • Location: N.E. Connecticut

Posted July 06, 2015 - 08:25 AM

The attic is not really a good place to store those trains.  That grease that is packed around the gears, etc. will dry out and get hard as all get out with the heat.  When you do get them down they will have to be fully cleaned and lubed up to run.  Damage may have already been done but lets hope not.

Thanks for the warning. I agree with you, that is why I haven't done anything with them. They were bought in the late 50s and early sixties but once I started saving for a car in 1966, they were put away. I've got to setup an 8' x 10' table to match what I had back then and then clean all the track and lube the engines. I'm also worried about the big transformer. Its in its original box but has been sitting for 49 years. We will see when I get to it. Good Luck, Rick



#5 toomanytoys84 OFFLINE  

toomanytoys84

    Aaron

  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 45129
  • 8,243 Thanks
  • 5,082 posts
  • Location: Ohio

Posted July 06, 2015 - 07:29 PM

A hot dry attic would be a good place for a transformer!
  • boyscout862 said thank you

#6 shorty ONLINE  

shorty

    Member

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Member No: 6172
  • 3,567 Thanks
  • 3,950 posts
  • Location: Lancaster County Pa

Posted July 06, 2015 - 10:24 PM

About 6-7 years ago I helped my dad put in a garden railway. We raised it up about two feet. For two reasons, drainage the miniture plants do not like wet feet and to keep the grandchildren off a little better. We made a small mountain with a tunnel and a stream running down to a fish pond. I didn't help too much with laying the track. I think Dad laid the track on top of stone dust. And every year it needs to get reballasted. He is still running with track power yet, keeps talking about adding on board controllers. The main engines that Dad runs all have programmable sound cards for more realistic sound. Dad also likes to run live steam. It is neat to see that run on cool night when you can see the steam and hear the occasional relief valve. I need to get more pics of his set once again. I can't find any right now.


  • boyscout862 said thank you

#7 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted July 08, 2015 - 08:34 PM

Your transformer will be OK up in the attic.  The new grease we have to work with now is not a problem in the heat but the old stuff they used back then does not like a lot of heat.  Will just take some time to soak them good and pick all the dried grease out of the gears.  I serviced about 80 brass engines a fired of mine had in his attic in Chicago.  He would send me about 12 or 15 at a time.  I would service them all, get them running good (as can be expected with opine frame motors) and send them back.  He sold them all on eBay.

 

Had overcast here most of the day but managed to get a few photos of the railroad.  The next major project is to raise it up on concrete blocks.  Will go 8" high and get it closer to level.  Now it has about a 6" rise up the back side.  When your trying to run 2 trains it is hard to keep up with the increase and decrease in speed needed to climb up that grade.

 

Crossing Shed.JPG   Railroad Town.JPG   Railroad SE.JPG   Railroad NW.JPG   Railroad North.JPG   Railroad Center-1.JPG


  • daytime dave, Gtractor, grnspot110 and 2 others have said thanks

#8 daytime dave OFFLINE  

daytime dave

    Live long and prosper

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 531
  • 4,485 Thanks
  • 6,353 posts
  • Location: Upstate NY

Posted July 08, 2015 - 11:13 PM

Great photos.  Looks like a really nice garden railroad.



#9 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted July 31, 2015 - 07:27 AM

Got the track down to a 1% grade.  I found I was off a lot more than I thought.  In the 3rd photo, the track by that signal light mast was the high point.  In the 5th photo the track on the left of the photo was the low area.  10.5" low !  Have the low brought up about 6" and except for the one industrial loop, it now has the 1% grade, up  and down.  Have a load of gravel with lots of fine ready to be put in place this morning, to bring the town area up to track grade.  Then reset all the buildings.  I have a good supply of 3/4" cedar strips I plan to use to build retaining walls in a few places, especially along the service track opposite the coal tipple and water tank.  Have another engine with receiver board installed and another board to put in a Steamer.  I need one more Locolinc receiver board for a 0-4-0 switcher.  Then I can switch from diesel to steam and run 2 engines/train at the same time.  Anyone out there have an extra board let me know.


  • Alc said thank you

#10 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted July 31, 2015 - 08:13 PM

Hand placed, one shovel full at a time a little over a ton or rock this morning.  Our rock is all crushed limestone and I got some with a lot of fine.  Class A  they call it.  I usually run it over a 3/8" hardware cloth screen but had a supply on hand so didn't bother this time around.  Got it all in place and one row of building set just before noon.  After lunch I set the other row and quit for the day.  Was 90° and 70% humidity.  Wen to the basement and put another receiver board in a Bachmann 4-6-0.  Will test the board out in the morning.  I all work well, will put the engine back together and it will be ready for the track.  I now have three engines with receivers and two battery cars, and 4 batteries.  I use the Makita Li-Ion 18 V batteries as they charge in about 20 min.  A battery will run about 45 min to an hour.  Will get photos again in the next day to so.  Raining again now.


  • KennyP said thank you

#11 FixItCharlie OFFLINE  

FixItCharlie
  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 47950
  • 360 Thanks
  • 259 posts
  • Location: Aurora,IL

Posted August 23, 2015 - 11:24 AM

Where did you get the electronic bell.

 

Charlie



#12 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted August 28, 2015 - 12:02 AM

That came from a crossing in town that was closed.  A salvage yard near by got the items for removing them.  Being a good friend of mine I got them for scrap price.  The electronics were in the mast yet but the top and PVC below were busted up and speaker horn was gone.  The arm and assembly box is about 500 lbs. on these old ones so didn't keep them.  I got it for scrap price by weight.  I traded the cast from a parted out H Farmall tractor for the signal building.  The search light signal is the same vintage as the crossing signal, all cast iron.  It is non - operating as the K2 operator had been removed.

 

Been working on Garden Tractors so haven't done much with the railroad.  3 or 4 times a week around 3 or so I go open the door to the train shed and rive one out and sit back and relax and watch it run.


  • Alc said thank you

#13 MH81 ONLINE  

MH81

    Proud to be Deplorable

  • Staff Admin
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 802
  • 27,319 Thanks
  • 28,636 posts
  • Location: N. W. PA

Posted August 28, 2015 - 06:12 AM

What an absolute labor of love.
When you get one out sometime, can you post a few pics or even a short video?

#14 chieffan OFFLINE  

chieffan
  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 62695
  • 6,166 Thanks
  • 4,507 posts
  • Location: SW Iowa

Posted August 30, 2015 - 04:43 PM

Sorry for the late reply.  Been busy keeping up with mowing and working on tractors, my first hobby.  Only videos I get are with a cam corder and would not have any idea as to how to post them.  Will grab some photos when I have the trains running again.  Granddaughter and I were out running them for an hour or more this afternoon.  Sun was not out so not good for photos but I will get them and post them.

 

Have three engines running on battery power now.  No more track cleaning !!  Just have to keep the ground cover plants from invading the rails.






Top