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NZR 70ft Turntable

It was decided that to turn locos by hand just added to the risk of the big drop or damage in some way so a turntable was needed. As my largest loco was the Ja it was a no brainer that a 70ft version was called for, who knows there may be a day when something larger will use it!!! Below 2 Pics; A wooden frame was built & braced accordingly with the required sized hole cut out with a jigsaw, not forgetting to save the insert as it is a crucial part of the next step!

Below Left; Work out the depth of the pit & cut a strip off 3mm plywood, tack & glue to the insert. I used brass tacks which I had left over but any small nail with a head will do the job & staples, now for the hard bit!! Once it is dry you have to make it fit in the hole so the width of the cut the jig saw made was about 2mm so in theory you have to sand another 1mm all the way around, you have to try & keep it as even as possible all the way around or it can get out of shape so the secert is sand & have a try fit!! Below Right; Once it has been fitted, glued & secured in place sand flat to the base board & fill any gaps etc

Below Left; Board is in place with a centre spigot in the middle with the hand laid rails leading to the pit, I can't say enough that you have to brace it as you don't want any twisting at a later date as this may result in the turntable jaming up when being used. Below Right; After the pit was complete the pit rail had to be made, this was where the clubs trusty old rail-bender came into play. Sleepers were cut, glued & then the rail was spiked into place.

Above Left; We are now viewing the underside of the turntable itself, we started with a solid piece of MDF & stepped it back in layers. The decking is all exterior timber cut to required sizes, once again I use the glue & pin technique to get a lasting bond. Above Right; The sides are in place which are 2mm styrene with flat 0.5mm flat made into angle to give it more detail. Below Left; Just a general view of the underside sitting in the pit, the wheel at the end is only a temporary measure to mark out where the pit rail was going. Below Right; The deck plate is riveted in place.

Above Left & Right; A detailed view of the power pick-up arrangement. I used a LGB pick-up (skate) at each end of the turntable, this runs along the pit rail which is connected to the delivery track. as you can see  Below Left; A gap in the rail is an insulation point with another diagonally across the other side to get the power from the delivery track to the turntable. The only down side to this is you must remember to hit the reverse button before moving off!!! Below Right; The push-bar has been machined out of a alloy rod withe the box staples being used for the up-rights of the hand rails. Some long lengths of welding wire was purchased to do the pipe effect on the hand rails which has turn out quite well.

Above Left; Close uo of the added detail of the push-bar & railings. Above Right; It took a bit of working out to get the correct bends to mount the push-bar to the main frame of the turntable (more good luck I think) it all worked out well in the end. Below; Ja1268 is awaiting permission to proceed onto the turntable, have just noticed the LGB Santa Fe mikado to the left is no longer with the AFR it was recently sold to the local Railway here in Ashburton & sometimes visits on run days. 

Below Right; I might have got a bit carried away with the 6 pics but it will show all quite a lot of the detail on the turntable before it heads to the paint shop & of course 1268.

 

 

Below; Fresh from the paint shop, Just a quick note I have changed my brand of paint as VHT is close to $20 a tin so have gone to Rust-Oleum @ $12.00 a can from the local Bunnings Store. There Primer range has a great choice of colours with White, Red Oxide, Grey & Black which will cover the while range of Railway items. I have found that it covers very well & is less prone to run unlike the VHT. Or maybe I have become more patient!!  

Below; The next 4 pics are of the turntable in its pit, the railings have been painted 7 the pit ballasted with Woodlands Scenics HO Coarse mix to try & get the finer texture.

Below; The finished article!!! You may notice that we now have an addition on the turntable module with a buffer stop!! This was added as I found out if you forget to change the direction on the hand piece there is on one way to go & thats over the edge!! Lucky for me it was a Bachmann Big Hauler so no damage was done.

 

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