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Crenshaw Extension

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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul 04 2011 at 8:11am
7-2-11 Tom D removed the old joint plates and bolts and re-cut the gap on the end of the rails. New Train Mountain type joint clips were installed on 6 sets of rail joints that were binding up and moving the track in to a big S turn in the track, called a heat kink. This new type of clip is much like the rail joints used on H O model train track and seems to be working well for us.

Charlie came along to see what I was up to so I showed him how to level the track and had him start leveling the track past where the joints were being worked on. It was hot out and he got about 25 feet of track leveled and came back and said he didn't think track leveling was something he liked and was a lot of hard work (it was hot out and we were in the sun so it was a little ruff) so he and Phil went back to the steaming bays and did some much needed work on the club steam locos and that was in the shade so that was a good thing.

Mark J and Howie went out and trimmed back all of the tree and brush branches back away from the track and worked at removing more weeds all the way to the end of the track.

Tom D worked at leveling the track from the red car all the way to the switch where the track goes from two tracks to one track, which is about 500 feet. It will need more leveling work to be done but its a lot better to run on now.


On 7-3-11 Ray, Howie, Tom and that hard working, good looking guy Steve,  moved the piles of new wood for the depot project to the side so that we can start to get the 60 foot radius track panels built and installed. That will make it a lot better for the club members to run down the Crenshaw Line loco first and not have to back their train down the line.

At the pot luck dinner-night run a few member made runs down to the sidings at the end of  Crenshaw and had a lot of fun. Robert and Ben derailed in two spots out on the line and marked the spots so we can go back out there and work on leveling out the track.

We will keep working on the track mainly from the depot to the windshield wiper table and get that track back in good shape so that we can use it on run days. We may work at adding a passing siding at the top of the hill with the wood tied track panels that we have removed from the main line lately.

We are thinking that with this passing siding when running two trains on the line if your heading out on the Crenshaw track, and you don't see a train coming down at you, past that siding, you can continue heading on out on the single track part of the line and the returning train can just wait at  the passing siding switch. At this point in time you cannot see the other train once they get past the top of the hill on the line, and there can be a long wait for the outbound train as the train in front of them gets turned around to come back in this will also make it so we can run three or more  trains down the Crenshaw line more safely.

Tom D       

Edited by PhilC - Sep 05 2011 at 2:16pm
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Dining with Ms Daisy View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dining with Ms Daisy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul 18 2011 at 9:07pm

Last Saturday Night Run after the potluck was the first time I made it to Crenshaw since we became members.  I really enjoyed the two trips and THANK YOU Tom for pushing and leading the effort to lay out the tracks all the way to the end of Crenshaw.  Ben and Robert always seem to manage a trip or two during night runs and now I know how special it is (well, except for the smelly cats!)

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug 01 2011 at 10:00am
Well, we got the track installed from the depot to the red car and started to ballast it. We are out of ballast and it looks like it will be a little bit time wise before we get more. The good thing however is that it will be a lot and it will be free so we will just wait. We have been test running on the new track and it feels OK. We still need to do some leveling out on the Crenshaw line before we start hauling riders down to the windshield wiper and back but we are getting there.

At this point we are thinking it would be best to put a 120 foot passing siding at the top of the hill on Crenshaw so the train going out can keep running out on the line if he dosnt see a train coming back down the line and there is away to pass a train at the top of the hill. That should make it so we can run 3-4 trains down Crenshaw if need be on a runday. 

Edited by PhilC - Aug 01 2011 at 1:43pm
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Steve C View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Steve C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug 01 2011 at 8:33pm
Cool, ordered the llast few parts for the F-7 from mdm locomotive works today! I have been meaning to do that for over a month now. All the parts are painted and there is about an hour of work left on assembly of the second truck! Just have to make some time in the shop now!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug 15 2011 at 1:23pm
0n the Sunday 8-7-11 run day we hauled public on the Crenshaw line up to  the windshield wiper and back with Howie's train. It was great to be back up and running on the Crenshaw line as it has been along time since we have done that.

The club got great feed back from the riders. This feat was accomplished with a lot of work from a small group of members that had some free time to put into the project.

On Saturday 8-6-11 Howie and Tom scraped up the last of the ballast and put it down on the Y track by the the red car. Man, we had just enough rock to get ballast down on all of the new track. We had to work around Max, Kelly and their two man crew that were working on the roof boards and trim of the new depot. That was a good thing, as its great to see they are moving along on that big project.

Tom D lined and leveled all of the track on the Y and then worked on the track all the way out to the new softball crossing, which is about 30 feet before the windshield wiper tun around table.

Tom worked until about 830 at night thinking if he got it done we may try to run some trains on the line the next day. Steve and Howie came out the next morning before the start of the run day and with the leaf blower machine  blew off all of the build up that was on and near the track.

The only bad thing was at some point when we where not running the Crenshaw line all the time, the lock on the turn table disappeared and it looks as though some people had some rough fun riding the table back and forth as it bent the stops and latches that line the table up with the track when you are turning a loco. Steve tried to hammer them back. He did get them a little better then they were, but they will need some heating up and bending to get them back so they are correct.

When Howie was turning his loco on the table he just had the conductor hold the table lined up with the track and all went well for the run day.

Steve also checked out a few old wood ties in a few spots before the run just to be sure all was right with the older track on the Crenshaw line. At some point we will have to go along this older part of the Crenshaw line track and replace every 4th tie a few times till we have all plastic ties on the line. Another option is that we may make some 20 foot all steel panels to replace some of the older track. The steel track takes the abuse that we think comes from the kids at the school next door a lot better but the new type plastic ties are much easier to work with and don't cost as much per panel. Well  time will tell on that item.

Tom D   

Edited by PhilC - Aug 15 2011 at 8:19pm
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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep 04 2011 at 6:29am
9-4-11 Howie, and Tom took out a high spot on the return track that was bugging Howie when he ran his train over it. We also raised a few low spots, did some aligning and leveling. We need some more ballasting rock so we can do some more and keep this track real straight and level as is settles down.

Howie and Tom then had Tom's son Wyatt join them and they worked on getting the spring loaded laches on the windshield wiper turntable to work right again. Howie had his new 4" battery grinder with him to try out and we started to try to make the notch in the spring loaded tab wider so it would fall in the tab on the table allowing the table and the tracks to  line up.

After grinding and trying to get the correct angle with the grinder, Tom tryed just beating the lever tab down over the tab on the table to try to get the slot to spread out some. Well  it worked so the frist side was done. Then Tom went on to tighten the bolt holding the end of the track down and got his finger jammed big time between the table and the track. Ooooch!!! Looks like it split his nail in half and ripped some of the skin off the bottom of his finger. Oh well things happen so after a break they went on to the latch on the other end of the table which was fixed more quickly by doing a little grinding and hammering,. Howie took some oil and lubed the wheels and ring rail.

That pretty much ended the work for the day as Tom's right hand figer needed some time to heal up. The Crenshaw line however, is ready for the Sunday run and maybe we will try running two or three trains down there. It will work if we get the timing wright or at lest it will be a good test for the train crews.

Tom D.   

Edited by PhilC - Sep 05 2011 at 2:14pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 21 2011 at 6:07pm
10-21-11, Well, we got one truck load of ballast stone so we got to work one after noon and with the help from a few members and there friends, ballasted over 500 feet of track on the Crenshaw Line that runs past the ball field. This part of the line has needed re-ballasting for some time now.

Next, Tom D built a new left hand switch and with the help of Shane-o, installed it just before the ball field crossing. They also put down about 40 feet of old wood tie mainline track that was previously removed from in front of the water tower. This track was removed as part of our track renovation project to remove all wood ties from the two main line loops.

We replaced a few rotted wooden ties and this track should be good for a slow speed passing siding. There is some more old wood tie track laying around at the club that we will try to rehabilitate to use the track for this passing siding.

Tom D is also done with building a right hand switch so the length of the passing siding will depend on how much old reusable track we find, or, we get some help with buying some more plastic tie stock. When this passing siding is done we will be able run three or four trains down the Crenshaw line on a run day. Tom D has these switches set up so padlocks can be used to keep the switches aligned so there are no head on collisions.

Kelly Smith has also donated some old battery powered signal lights so at some point after a lot of bonding wires and some insulator joints are installed, we can have block segments with red lights on the line to help keep the trains in order which should be fun to run a train on.

Next  Tom will be building a switch for the return track coming back from the end of the line to tie in by the windshield wiper turn table. We also need to build about 30 feet of new track which should use up the rest of the plastic tie stock onhand form the last order. Then it is time to build a 22.5 foot turntable. Tom D   

Edited by PhilC - Oct 21 2011 at 9:57pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 25 2011 at 10:27pm
On Sunday 10-23-11, Tom Downing took the tape measuring wheel that Steve Claude had dropped off a few months ago and ran it along every bit of track we run on at SOCal and came up with a total of track on the ground of 6786 feet. That includes sidings, yard, and main line.

The Crenshaw line came out to 1775 feet of track, the new track from the windshield wiper down to the end and back up to the return track to where it stops is 950 feet, with about 30 feet left to put down to the switch  at the windshield wiper. So when it's done it will be almost a 1000 foot run down and back.

After doing all that walking around Tom got to work and cut some 1 1/2 x 3/4 shims to go under the rail on the baseball crossing pad. This was done to get the rail head up above the crossing boards, as the other older crossing looks to have settled and some locos are hitting the crossing board as they go over them.

Tom replaced some rotted and missing ties on the last panel before the crossing, and then installed the rail on the crossing. At about this time Phil Cohen came walking up the roadbed and jumped in and gave Tom a hand and they cleared 40 more feet of the old wood chips and leveled the gravel and set 4 more track panels down. Then Tom installed the joints and ties under them.

These last 4 panels were in much better shape and didn't need any ties replaced, so that was about 55 feet more track down to add to the list. Tom had just finished building the right hand switch for the end of the siding in his shop that morning and had hoped to get it installed but we just ran out of time. So hopefully next weekend we can get that switch and a few more track panels in and do some ballasting to the new track.

I don't know if we will get the new passing siding all done for the next run day on 11-5-11 but we will try if we don't run out of ballast stone first. Tom put a call into his friend Steve A and he sad he will try to drop and load of ballast before the weekend, well see ?

Tom has also started to build the left hand switch that goes by the windshield wiper for the return track coming up from the end of Crenshaw. We will need to also build three or four more track panels as well, and then comes all the fun of installing them.  The wood chips are a good 12" to 18"deep in the part of the old road bed and will have to be cleared first. But we will get her done and it will be great fun for all of us at SOCAL to run on that new track.

Well that's all for now.

Tom Downing

   

Edited by PhilC - Oct 26 2011 at 2:00pm
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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 30 2011 at 5:11pm
11-26-11 Tom Downing built a new #8 left hand switch using the first of 6 steel frogs that Jerry Boudreaux made and gave to the club and the first of three sets of points that Joe Manzo made and gave to the club [thanks guys] .

The switch was built for the track coming back from the end of Crenshaw extension that will tie back in to the main line just before the windshield wiper. Howie and Tom hauled the new switch out to the location cut the track and installed the new switch sounds EZ but it wasn't.  This job fought us all the way.

Howie had some new battery tools that helped big time otherwise it would have taken a lot more time to do. Tom got out Rory's two bottom dump hopper cars, filled them with ballast rock and with Phil's help hauled them out to the switch and ballasted the new switch.

We took the piece of track removed from the main line for the switch and hooked it to the new lead coming off the switch and ballasted it. Tom then cleared a lot of the wood chips for about 30 feet to where the end of the track is coming back from the end of the line. It looks like it will take 2-3 new track panels to close the gap and a lot of ballast stone as the ground drops about 12-14 inches as it crosses the old rail bed.

Looking at the layout  of the two sidings at the end of the line it maybe best for trains to use the left side for the down track after the windshield wiper and the right side as the return track that way the trains have a straight run into the switches at the end instead of a tight "S" turn they have been trying to make. There is still a lot to do but we are getting there.

This was switch number 14 that I have made for the club and I am getting them so they are very smooth to run  though. I've learned lots of little things about building switches and it has been a lot of fun for me.

Tom Downing  

Edited by PhilC - Dec 01 2011 at 3:43pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 03 2012 at 7:59pm
Well Tom Downing with help from Howie, Phil, Rory, Wyatt,and Blake got the new passing siding opened up and it was used on the 1-1-12 run day.

It is about a 200 foot long siding so it is a long one. The new siding has changed SCLS. In the past the Crenshaw Line could only run one train. Then we double tracked the red car end of the line and started to run two trains. Then we tried to run three trains but it wasn't an easy thing to do. Now with the siding opened up, we at one point had four trains running the line, however running 5 trains can be done when the crews get more used to the set up and get the timing down, so they are not all bunched up on the line.

Signals are in the works and once they are up and running all trains can go up Crenshaw.  I would think we can run a few more trains if we have the riders and the train crews to do so. The only thing that has come up is with more trains running on the line, Tom found a few soft spots in the road bed and  four switches had the gage on the points a little to wide. That was an easy fix. Tom also had Wyatt and Blake put spray lube on the joints to see if it keeps the long straight track from getting heat bends in it. At this point it seems to be working.

Ray and Mathew came out one day and put one more train load of ballast stone in just past the new down track switch past the windshield wiper. Looks like maybe two more train loads of stone and 2 1/2 more 15 foot track panels and that track will be tied in.

Boy! It looks like the club will have to buy a lot of weed killer as we have a huge cop of weeds on the track this year. We put weed barrier mat down under all of the new track that we have installed in the past year, but it didn't work and it seems like there is more weeds where the mat is then where there is no mat ? Well looks like that plan didn't work out,well thats all for now.

Tom Downing

Edited by PhilC - Jan 03 2012 at 9:19pm
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