I’m just wrapping up a few more tasks on Prince Street tonight and thought I’d share an update on the layout. As mentioned, I have the first half of the track in place now and this means that if we had power in the rails we could bring a train from the fiddle yard and into the back platform. I have the second siding in place as well now so once that train has arrived, the station pilot can be used to move the coaches from that train and place them in the departure siding, thereby releasing the engine so it can be serviced and made ready for it’s next run out.
I dug out an old 1/4″ DPDT slide switch and modified it to function as means of actuating, holding and routing power through a turnout. I also drilled out the throwbars on the two installed turnouts so they could be connected to this switch. I did try fitting this switch to see how well it would work to throw these turnouts and everything looks like it’s going to work out great. The slide switch’s throw is greater than I need for my N scale turnouts and I’m relying on the actuating rod (music wire) to compensate without placing too much stress on the turnout’s throwbar – I find that placing about 1-1/2″ of distance from the turnout to the switch seems to be the happy balance. The wire I’m using is 0.020″ diameter. I’m not sure what I’ll elect to use to actually throw the switch back and forth but I think a piece of brass rod should be fine to move the slide switch. Of course there are much more attractive options than the ubiquitous knob-on-the-fascia route. I think that Trevor Marshall’s use of large scale stands is very cool. Given that I grew up on a steady diet of British model railway magazines I think a small lever frame like this one from Brassmasters would be extremely cool and it might be something I try out here. With only three turnouts to move I feel this might be a great opportunity to try something different. One thing is for sure, no Caboose Industries ground throws.
I thought I’d take a few progress photos of the layout and starring in these shots are a pair of Micro-Trains CPR heavyweights. The cars are generic designs but should be perfectly fine standins for the 1300 series cars that CP had been using in Montreal commuter service through to the of the sixties. Here’s the photos:
It’s always fun to daydream and as I knelt down low enough so I could peer down along my little layout and imagined myself into the scene I couldn’t help but recall some photos from this article on CPR Montreal commuter train, steam hauled, in the late-1950’s: