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Model Railroading > Train time at the Depot

Date: 06/13/19 20:26
Train time at the Depot
Author: atsf121

So the train depot in Lehi, UT was open on May 10th as part of the Spike 150 celebrations in Utah and I dropped by.  I met Darlene who was the hostess that evening and learned her grandparents had lived in the Depot while her grandfather worked for the railroad.  While I was looking at the maps and photos on display on the main floor, I overheard her ask another gentlemen if he knew anything about model trains because she wanted to get their N-scale layout working again.  He said no, so I told her I had model trains and could probably help.  Took some coordination with the local museum director who had the key to let us in on a day I could sneak away from work - who actually gives us some community service hours each year so I got to use a few today.  Anyway, I took my oldest with me and we were able to remove the plexiglass sides off, clean the track, the steam engine wheels, and the car wheels for the two main trains.  When we tried the powerpack we didn't get any movement on the track.  I brought my old powerpack so we hooked it straight to the tracks with alligator clips and were able to get things moving.  So we played with the different engines for a bit and decided the UP 2-8-2 was the best runner of the group.  As we were finishing up, I crawled underneath again to see what was stored under there and to take another peek at the wiring.  We figured out we could open the center backdrop and reach in to work on the trains if we ever need quick access.  Taking the plexiglass of will still be better for major cleaning or maintenance.  But with the cover open, I noticed a bunch of what I think are Altas eletrical DPDT switches.  Found a different set of wires and hooked my powerpack in and viola, the train ran. So we hooked up the other powerpack and all was good in the world.  I'll need to spend some more time looking at the wiring and the DPDT switches as the powerpack is an old MRC  Tech II DualPower so we might be able to get two trains running.  The DPDT switches are in behind the backdrop so that's an odd place that will make it hard to switch trains.  But at the same time, this is a display layout with a passing side, a couple of sidings, and a 3 track yard.  So it's not really setup for multi-train operation.  It will probably be one train running with the others parked out of the way.  But it was a fun way to spend a few hours of "work" this morning with my son.

Between this layout and the Utah Live Steamers I've been doing more on those projects than my home layout in the past 2 years.  Two adoptions, a house remodel, work, kids, etc have all conspired to keep me busy eslewhere.  :)  Need to get back to that home layout, soon!

1 - Jacob cleaning the car wheels after Darlene had cleaned the track
2 - Video of one of our test runs.  I think the UP 2-8-2 is a Kato product, it sure ran smooth
3 - When I was poking around underneath I realized we could open the cover of the center backdrop, so a quick selfie was in order

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