Echo Lakes

An interesting series of videos on Magnorail can be found on the klatchco56 channel on YouTube. Here's the latest entry :


Coastal Command 1942

A 009 model railway by Darryl Foxwell

Coastal Command were often referred to as the Cinderella service in WW2 as their important job looking after the shipping lanes was eclipsed by the Battle of Britain and the large bomber raids over Germany. However, this does not make them any less interesting. If you have seen the book - Wings on Rails - Arcturus Press 2003 - you will see the front cover shows a railway loco and carriages crossing a runway while a large aircraft waits, props turning, for the loco and carriages to pass.

The bicycle and the other vehicles that are used on the Magnorail conveyor system are a constant pull for all ages.

Coastal Command 1942
Coastal Command 1942
Coastal Command 1942

Three hybrid bikes on a day tour


Highway in N scale

One of our clients, Wim Wetsteijn, built a four-lane highway using Magnorail! The beauty is that due to the independent tracks, the cars in the left lane overtake the cars in the right lane. Here’s a short impression:


Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’

Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
1. Het ontwerp voor het traject van het Magnorail-systeem is met wat stukjes karton bepaald. Op basis van de schets van het traject wat de voertuigen moeten gaan afleggen heb ik een grondplaat gezaagd waarop het kettingsysteem bevestigd kan worden. Die hele grondplaat, inclusief de bedding van een riviertje wat in het landschap zal worden opgenomen, is uitneembaar gemaakt. Zo kon ik op m’n gemak de hele constructie op de werkbank in elkaar knutselen.
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
2. Het kettingsysteem van Magnorail is hier provisorisch vastgezet met push-pins, daarna kan de geleiderails definitief met de bijgeleverde schroefjes worden gemonteerd op de ondergrond.
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
3. Het wegdek wordt gemaakt van stevig maar niet te dik karton. Om het wegdek goed te laten aansluiten op het kettingsysteem moeten wel alle tussenruimtes opgevuld worden. In dit geval met stukjes MDF die gelukkig even hoog waren als de geleiderails waar de ketting in ligt.Hierboven het overzicht van de totale Magnorail-baan. Twee ‘rondjes’ die naast elkaar liggen. Onderaan zijn beide aandrijf-units te zien. Die vergen wat ruimte om zich heen vandaar dat beide kettingen hier wat uitwijken. Niet erg, want dit gedeelte komt niet in zichtbaar deel van de modelbaan. Je ziet dat er best krappe bochten mogelijk zijn. Maar niet te veel, want dan wordt de weerstand van de ketting te groot en wil het motortje niet meer…
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
4. Het hele traject is ten behoeve van eenvoudige montage op een aparte plaat gemaakt die in z’n geheel in de modelbaan kan worden geschoven.
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
5. Om alles te testen werd het kartonnen wegdek even provisorisch vastgezet. Ik heb grijs gekleurd fotokarton van 300 gr/m2 gebruikt (geheel volgens de aanwijzingen van Magnorail, eerdere experimenten met plasticplaat waren geen succes).
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
6. -
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
7. Tesa tapijtkleefband (dubbelzijdig) werd overal aangebracht waarna het karton (met beleid en veel geduld) kon worden vastgedrukt. Er zijn helaas geen foto’s van deze fase aangezien ik geen handjes over had om ook nog het knopje van de camera in te drukken 😉
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
8. Omdat het grijs van het karton alleen niet echt een overtuigend wegdek weergeeft, heb ik met de airbrush met wat verschillende kleurtjes grijs en grijsbruin een waasje over het karton aangebracht, inclusief wat onregelmatige vlekken en vakken die de talloze reparaties in het wegdek moeten voorstellen.
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
9. Lijnen op de weg horen er natuurlijk ook bij, om ook de miniatuur-weggebruiker enig houvast te bieden. Maar op de modelbaan is het 1968, en toen waren ze nog niet zo scheutig met wegbelijning. Summier toepassen dus. Ik heb de witte lijnen aangebracht met de airbrush.

Eerst afplakken met geel tape.

Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
10. Dan met de airbrush een witte laag aanbrengen.
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
11. Als laatste stap dan voorzichtig het tape weghalen natuurlijk…
Traffic on layout ‘Gbf Unterhaltung-Oben’
12. En dan nog iets tot slot: De nieuwe slepertjes voldoen uitstekend. Laat ze los in het voertuig steken, zo is de wegligging optimaal en kun je heel gemakkelijk een ander autootje op de sleper ‘prikken’. Dat heb ik in de eerste fase van de bouw fout gedaan, ik had de metalen slepertjes vastgelijmd aan de voertuigen. Niet doen dus!! Laat het los, zou ik willen zeggen.

Mountain diorama part 5

De last part on the construction of the mountain diorama is all about the bridges, tunnel entrances, mountains and the trees and plants.

Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5
Mountain diorama part 5

Mountain diorama part 4

A train in scale N on the diorama, that would be nice. There was still space at the back of the diorama. There might be a railway bridge just like the car bridge crossing the valley, coming from a tunnel in one mountain wall and disappearing in a tunnel on the other side. A piece of N scale railroad track of 20 to 30 cm in length would then be visible for the spectator. With on it a stationary train? Or maybe a shuttle train that runs back and forth between the tunnels. That would be a short train, a single locomotive with up to just one wagon.

Another possibility was the vertical loop train. 10 years ago for the first time to see on the N model layout the blue tram in N. Two vertical wheels, one left and one right, across which an endless papertape runs. On the tape the lok and the wagons are attached one by one with a transparent plastic strip. One of the wheels is motor-driven making the paper band move and the train with it.

The train will hang upside down at the bottom, but when it is on top, he crosses the bridge in such a way that the wheels of loco and wagons follow exactly the rails. The paper band runs through the hollow bridge plate, invisible to the public. The transparent strips protrudes through a ridge between the rails to help ensure that the paper band conveys its movement on the train parts. The run up of the train at one wheel will take place inside the mountain, just as the down run does at the other wheel.

A train consisting of 1 locomotive and 13 freight wagons is thus possible. A magnet on the paper band passes a reed contact at the right time, making the train stop and wait in the backdrop on a following passage across the bridge. In the junk box I found plenty of N wagons and a German diesel locomotive. All heavy parts had to be removed because the vertical loop train carries the motto: the lighter the better. On the pictures is to see how the installation of this train course has become.

For the control of the canoes, the steep jeep, the motorway and now also the train allows an Arduino board, put together and programmed by David. When testing there was to hear an irritating buzz, presumably caused by the pulse width control of the Arduino. To the elimination of this buzz is worked on. Now it is time to look to the scenery in part 5.

Mountain diorama part 4
1. Vertical wheels, still without papertape between them.
Mountain diorama part 4
2. View under the diorama where the train is hanging upside down.
Mountain diorama part 4
3. Dieselloco where metal basis is removed and replaced by a lighter polystyrol one.
Mountain diorama part 4
4. Motor driven wheel.
Mountain diorama part 4
5. Vertical loop train integrated on diorama.
Mountain diorama part 4
6. All technics on the diorama is ready now. Next move is shaping the scenery.

Mountain diorama part 3

1 november 2014

Now the basis of the new diorama is there, we can get started with the higher levels. We chose the bone shape for the road wich will cross the bridge. Actually a pursed oval with a turning loop at both ends. In one of them the Magnorail engine will be installed. The idea was to make the bone course removable. That makes maintenance a lot easier.

The slow jeep that steeply goes up, stops at a point and driving backward, requires a different drive principle. No oval with a circular chain but a measured piece of chain that in a twice as long piece of track is moved by the magnorail engine in two directions. Because the jeep is creeping up the path a slow motor is applied.

Additional magnets at the ends of the chain reed contacts are switched to stop the jeep and let drive it back. This reed contacts are located at both ends of the track. There will be no slider used to propel the jeep. As with the canoes two magnets are built in which are attracted by the magnets in the chain. This is a difficult job because the polarity has to be right, so you get no repulsion instead of attraction. The main advantage of this method is that the surface where the jeep drives about does not need to be smooth as with the sliders. Bumps or other discontinuities are easily overcome. The track is laid in curves because in a straight line it does not fit.

After testing the chain, covering of the three Magnorail courses can be started. First, every inch on both sides of the track is covered with double sided adhesive tape. The yellow cover tape will be removed later on. The canoe course is cut out from photocard of 0.4 mm thickness and painted in colour of water, olive green. This is followed by a layer of high gloss varnish. After drying the yellow cover can be removed and we paste the water surface. This should be done right at the first time because adjusting while pasting is not possible. We can now test if the canoes sail well.

The bone course is covered with a double layer of gray painted photocard, thickness 1.0 mm. By this thickness there can be propelled 4 car sliders . Bumps on the road surface can be washed away with cleaning solvent. The steep jeep course we cover with 1 mm thick cardboard.

We put the bone shape road over the river somewhat sloping to have an impression of the form which the diorama will finaly have. The scenery, we must just fantasize. I am thinking about adding a train track one way or another to the diorama. If this will be so and whether there is a moving or stationary train, is explained in section 4.

Mountain diorama part 3
1. Applying double side sellotape.
Mountain diorama part 3
2. This turnloop is somewhat modified.
Mountain diorama part 3
3. Water surface cut out of one piece of fotocard and painted.
Mountain diorama part 3
4. Layer of gloss varnish.
Mountain diorama part 3
5. Dog bone course sellotaped.
Mountain diorama part 3
6. Paint is still wet on the dog bone.
Mountain diorama part 3
7. Four car sliders can be moved on the dog bone.

Mountain diorama part 2

13 october 2014

Why passes often so much time between getting an idea up to the realization? Because there are other things that need to happen first. In my case, it was the finishing of a model of the school where I taught physics as a teacher from 1996 till June 2014. I wanted to offer my school a nice parting gift to my retirement. I think, it has been estimated.

After this project, there were other priorities. It was the time for a renovation of the “Blue tram in N”. Already 2 years this system was no longer been shown in an exhibition. February 2015 it will be present in Lahnstein, Germany. Several weeks of work were put in it. So the summer passed. The Leipzig fair approached, so that took a lot of time for preparation, both the “Hezelpoort” as also the stuff for Magnorail.

Back from Leipzig, I could start the mountain diorama at last. First of course the basis, the base plate on which everything is built up. I discovered that Birch plywood is very well suited. It is light in weight and let good saw, or even cut. It is sold in thicknesses from 3 mm. 5 mm was used for the base-plate. A hole for the motor part of the canoe course was already saved. The edges are made of planed pine slats 5,5 cm × 1.1 cm. There must be space for a Magnorail motor. For that he needs at least 5 cm.

Then the canoe course was formed. Out of the middle of the background, it comes forward meandering. In the front, he disappears on the right side where he goes back again. The canoe course engine is provided with a slow Magnorail motor. Once the chain in the track is laid, we test whether he is running smoothly. Therefore it is covered with a transparent PVC plate. This is only for testing. The chain remains in the track and you can see it is moving. Click the motor part at the bottom with the engine running.

Then, the surface next to the track must be brought on the same level as the top of the track. With paper, the shapes of the curves are set first onto Birch plywood with a thickness of 8 mm. These forms were cut out with a jigsaw. A recess in the plywood must be made to the points of the screws. I do that with the Dremel. All in all it’s a time consuming job. You can fill the room also with smaller pieces of plywood, and do not cover even the screws.

If it is done properly however, it looks nice, although everything will disappear under the watersurface, wich is made of fotocard of 0.4 mm. In the next posting, the road with the bonelike form and the steep road for the Jeep will be explained.

Mountain diorama part 2
1. Base plate with hole for Motorpart.
Mountain diorama part 2
2. Installing the track.
Mountain diorama part 2
3. Inserting the chain and testing.
Mountain diorama part 2
4. Cutting sideflaps (optional).
Mountain diorama part 2
5. Shape of curves copy on paper.
Mountain diorama part 2
6. Filling space beside track with 8 mm plywood.
Mountain diorama part 2
7. Canoe course ready to cover with “watersurface”.

Mountain diorama part 1

During Intermodellbau 2014 in Dortmund, Arno initiated the plan to build a new demonstration layout for the Magnorail products. The existing N scale layout with the typical Dutch canal scene might not be that appealing to German, Swiss or Austrian customers.

This new layout will be situated in the mountains: a road with a bridge between two tunnels to demonstrate moving cars. Then, two canoes under the bridge, also moved using the Magnorail system, but with a slower motor and tiny magnets in the boats.

Also, a Jeep will go up a hill, meet a trunk blocking the road, and revert. For this, the proven system of magnets in the vehicle, much like Horst Wolf did with his tractor, should ensure the Jeep goes up and down the bumpy trail.

The première is planned for Intermodellbau 2015, again in Dortmund. Some shopping has been done to get the canoes, cars, trucks, mountain animals and vegetation.

Loek will build this layout (who else 🙂 ), David will take care of the electronics to make sure everything moves as intended. Well that’s the plan. Next step: construction.

Mountain diorama part 1
1. Laser cut mountain hut, animals and canoes.
Mountain diorama part 1
2. Cars from the 7ties.
Mountain diorama part 1
3. Jeep with magnets underneath, one visible.
Mountain diorama part 1
4. The Jeep once again.
Mountain diorama part 1
5. Laser cut plants.

Sneak preview of a demo layout

This time it's not going a to be a Dutch landscape, but a bit in the mountains with slopes and a little stream with canoes, all in N scale. There's also a jeep climbing up a rough trail until it meets a log, and then slowly reverts. Here's a short clip shot during the construction:

The whole thing is controlled using an Arduino board.

Sneak preview of a demo layout

Campsite

Several cyclists on the small campsite near to the railroad (Helmut Liedke). The diorama is partly created by children and is shown at the exhibition in Vienna.

Campsite

Gate

Cycling biker through a gate on a track with two turning loops by Helmut Liedtke.

Gate
Gate

Airport

A taxiing aircraft (1:500) as eye catcher under a glass coffee table. Made for good friends by Rombertus van der Berg.

Airport
Airport

Bicycles of all sorts

A nice picture of the bicycles a customer created in his ‘workshop’: Copyright Rob Mooij

Bicycles of all sorts

Auhagen Feldbahn

A customer sent us these pictures of how he makes an Auhagen Feldbahn engine and a carriage move using the Magnorail track system. The module was on display on June 28 and 29 2014 near Kevelaer (DE)
Copyright Horst MAK Kaarst

Auhagen Feldbahn
Auhagen Feldbahn
Auhagen Feldbahn

A tractor on an uneven track

One of our enthousiastic customers has managed to make a tractor move on a coarse path. He has used the Magnorail track system underneath, and put an additional magnet in the tractor. This provides enough pull to move the vehicle.
Modellbahn-ArbeitsgemeinschaftKaarst -MAK-

A tractor on an uneven track

Lorry in Scale N

We've created a short video where a lorry in N scale is moved using the Magnorail system. On our test track we've used one of the vehicle sliders to do this.The sliders has a small pin. The only modification to the lorry was to drill a small hole in the bottom.

I'm sorry for the low video quality.