My second linear motor layout is now taking shape. This is another small Aussie layout, a 48" x 17" model in T scale (1:450) of a typical but fictitious location on the outer edge of the Melbourne suburban network. Quite a few lines around Melbourne drop down to single track for their last station or two before the terminus. The setting is the 1970s / early 1980s, and will feature electric multiple unit stock from that period, all 3D printed.
Here is a simple animation of how these linear motor tracks work. The track consists of three interleaved strings of coils acting as electromagnets. At any time, one string is generating North poles, another string South poles, and the last string is turned off. Any models with suitably-spaced magnets get dragged along.
The coils are on 2mm centers, so the vehicles naturally move in 1mm steps. There are some additional tricks to reduce this step size to 0.25mm for slow running, but they are not shown here. The vehicle magnets must be alternating poles on on 3mm centers, most easily achieved by using 3mm disc magnets.
The layout is new almost complete - just waiting for the trees and backscene. The full complement of rolling stock is now built, painted and tested. At exhibitions, the plan is to run three typical trains: a long one hauled by the Garratt, a medium train hauled by one or two NAs, and a fire patrol trolley.
The rail linear motor test track is now evolving into a small micro-layout. The Monbulk Creek trestle bridge is a popular viewing spot on Puffing Billy, a 2'6" gauge tourist railway on the outskirts of Melbourne, Australia.
The scenic base is now in place, so time for the detailing, correct trains, and trees. Lots of gum trees.
After a long break, I have started working on the linear motor tracks again. This time, having a 3D printer means that the main emphasis will be on rail rather than road.
This little layout tests:
- the latest track design (with wide curves optimised for rail),
- a good track-surfacing technique (self adhesive labels printed with images derived from AnyRail 3D views),
- small scale train models (trickier than it looked, getting independent vehicles to move like a train is like herding cats),
- a simple queuing system (simulating storage loops to provide variety without needing points),
- and will be the basis of a small Australian narrow gauge micro-layout.
A project I have been meaning to tackle for a while. I have quite a few old Farish suburban coaches stored away, and wanted to convert some of them to have clerestory roofs.
These roofs are simple drop-in replacements for the originals, and are available on Thingiverse. I want to see how a full rake looks when painted!
British and Australian model railway layouts in OO, N, T and others.
- My Layouts
- Other Layouts
- T Gauge
- Working Roads
- Hybrid DC - DCC Controller
- Using LEDs
- Controlling the Fleischmann Turntable
- Constant Brightness Tail Lamps (OO scale)
- Point Motors and Relays
- Point Motors and Toggle Switches
- Dapol Signals
- Colour Light Signals and Automation
- Synchronized Fast Clocks
- Wire Sizes and Voltage Drop
- DC Controllers
- Controller Types
- Feedback Controllers
- Working Level Crossing
- General Tips
- 3D Printing