Welcome to New Zealand Rail 120, Lewis Holden's blog on modelling railways in New Zealand. I'm now modelling in 1:87 (HOn3.5). For NZR plans see the Plans page, or the NZ120 Facebook group.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Right said FRED - part I

This arrived in the mail the other day, another TradeMe purchase:

Wires and LEDs.
It's the circuitry for a FRED, or Flashing Rear-End Device. It's the flashing thing at the back of trains that replaced guards vans in 1987.

If you've ever wondered whats inside shipping containers, this won't help.
So I've removed the top off a 40-ft container that will eventually be permanently attached to a UK wagon with the FRED circuit inside and a battery pack (I thought of doing track pick-up but with AC current being used for DCC you'd need to add in an annoying rectifier and step down the voltage to 3v... too much hard work!).

The kit itself came with two different LEDs to attach - a small and really small one. I think I'll use the really small one.

Here's a video of the FRED in action on Westimaton's YouTube channel.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

HO trainiac

I was going to write a more interesting post about FREDs, but that will have to wait for another day. Instead, here's the Big Bang Theory on model trains.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

NZR track and more III

Part II here.

Righto, so after the camping mat was glued in place, it was painted quickly using some cheap acrylic paint (I think called "Burned Sienna") - it looks brown like dirt, which is the main thing:

Then it was time to add a powerfeed to the NZR track I'd made up. At the break in the track I filed away the oxidisation on the fishplates, and soldered hook-up wire to each rail:

I then drilled holes for the wires.

And now the track's in place:

Here's the holes for the wires with the track in place:

Then back come the books to hold the track in place as the glue dried:

Finally, I painted the sides of the track using Humbrol enamel "rust" in Matt. I can't remember exactly what its number is:

The next step will be to remove the paint from the top of the rail (with a fine-grade sandpaper), and away we go. I've already tested the track with Thomas and my DX, and it works fine.