St. Williams Order Board operational

My friend Chris Abbott dropped in today and we tackled a couple of projects on the layout. The first was to hook up the control for the order board at St. Williams.

As reported previously, Chris has been working in his machine shop to modify a garden scale, brass ground throw from Sunset Valley Railroad to use as the control for the order board. (I also have another use for these, which I’ll detail in a future posting.) He’s added a lever belowdecks to allow the ground throw to act on an R/C aircraft control line.

For the St. Williams order board, I decided the best place to install the control was on the slide-out work desk I built for this position. The photo below shows the work desk. The ground throw is in the upper right.
Order Board Control photo OrderBoard-Control-01_zpseb625c11.jpg

The next photo is a close-up of the control. (I’ve put a blank plastic label in front of it. It will be replaced, in time, with a label that identifies this control’s function.) Click on this control to see another picture, showing the mechanism that’s mounted through and below the shelf:
Order Board Control photo OrderBoard-Control-02_zpsdb247386.jpg

The photo below shows the mechanism from underneath the slide-out shelf. The wooden block holds the red sleeve to the shelf. Chris’ awesome lever is connected to a brass-plated steel clevis used in R/C aircraft, which is in turn connected to the yellow push rod.
Order Board Control photo OrderBoard-Control-03_zps70a0521c.jpg

The operation is simple – one pulls out the drawer (akin to opening the station) and flips the lever to the desired position. (The label, when installed, will indicate “set” and “clear”.) The short video below shows the order board in operation. Enjoy if you watch…

Thanks Chris!

More to come on today’s work session…

12 thoughts on “St. Williams Order Board operational

    • Thanks Daniel. I’m really pleased with the order board. I didn’t set out to make it work but when I went to install it on the station, I thought, “I’ll make it positionable.” Then I thought “that’ll require some stops so it doesn’t go past 90 degrees.” And then… well…

    • Hi Bruce:
      Good question. As Chris has already noted, the cable is fine with the slide. That said, I left the cable quite long and we mounted the control on the right side of the shelf – which is the farthest away from the station – so the cable would not bind. I tested this several times before we did the installation.

  1. Great session. Glad the mechanisms worked as planned. More stuff to come 🙂

    Bruce, the cable has plenty of flex – the end points are far enough away from each other that there is no bind in the motion of the sliding tray.

  2. I actually had enough time to get a train from staging to Port Rowan and back. Trevor handled the paperwork as conductor. Swapped a box for a tank at St. Williams, spotting the tank on the siding for the return trip. Placed a load of farm tractors on the team track in Port Rowan & swapped a loaded for an empty box at the mill. Picked up an empty tank from the coal/oil siding & turned the engine. Re-assembled the train and headed back to staging, picking up the tank at St. Williams along the way. Fast clock duration from 11:00AM to 3:30PM at 4:1 ratio, if I recall correctly.

    We discussed bell and whistle signal requirements for the route, especially at road crossings.

    The Gravett tree armatures are progressing very nicely; These will really make a difference to the visual presence of the various scenes. State of the art has certainly moved ahead in terms of materials and processes for treemaking.

    Smooth DCC operation throughout; no derailments, no table thumping.

    Dream Player sounds add greatly to the sense of place and time.

    The newly installed valance removes any visual distractions from your uppermost field of vision, allowing you to concentrate on the modelled scenes.

    I have at least one important machining project to undertake; the sector plate mechanism. There are also refinements to the sector plate loco cassette(s) and staging track power routing that we have discussed.

    Despite the high level of completion and operational functionality already achieved, there is certainly enough future work on the scenery and rolling stock to keep Trevor busy for a significant time to come. I think it’s great!

    • Thanks Chris – and I couldn’t have achieved this without you. I’m really enjoying working on projects together – each bringing our skills to the table.

      You’re right – there’s still a lot to do. I’m looking forward to it, too!

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