Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

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Greg_Lewis
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by Greg_Lewis » Wed Sep 10, 2014 11:08 pm

Who is the fat guy with the grey moustache? Jack is thin and has black hair.
Greg Lewis, Prop.
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Harlock
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by Harlock » Wed Sep 10, 2014 11:19 pm

beautiful centerpiece for your railroad Jack.
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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Thu Sep 11, 2014 10:13 am

Hello My Friends
Hey Greg Lewis, why I'll have you know I resemble that remark!
Too much fun!
Jack

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Mon Nov 17, 2014 11:58 pm

Hello My Friends
Last October work started on the Alcalde & Coalfield Railway. Progress has been slow and steady, the turntable is made as you all know and about the first of November the rough grading was completed with the last few buckets of fill between the mountain and valley division. The grading was a challenge at times. The Alcalde & Coalfield is located in what they call "Sand Canyon" which seems to be someone's idea of a joke as there aint much sand, mostly just rock. There were a couple days when progress was only a foot or so, and the back hoe bucket made a couple trips back to the shop in Grover Beach to have the teeth welded back on. But hammer headed stubbornness prevailed, the tractor survived, and the rough grading is finally done! The Waushakum style switch has been started with a few design changes. The drawings for the switch show the rails sliding in slotted aluminum tie-spacers. This set up looked a bit problematic. Upon referencing the photos available, it was noticed that the design had been changed to rollers to guide the rails. The way this switch works is, one end pivots, and the other end moves on rollers in an arc, remember it's a high line with your feet hanging down so a normal switch just won't do. When the track changes from straight (the main line) to curved, (the turntable lead) the rails change length a bit. There are 120 little brass rollers on 120 stainless steel pins mounted to floating steel ties with stainless steel nylon lock nuts to keep the little rollers from going astray. The rail is 1/4" x 5/8" cold rolled steel. The main part of the switch is 2" x 4" rectangular steel tube. It will be assembled and tested here at the shop in Grover Beach and then transported up to the railway and installed there on a concrete footing for the pivot end and a slab for the rolling end. Then the switch will locate the turntable, and the steaming bays and tree planting around them can begin. Then the railway will grow out from the switch in both directions. As soon as some track is down it will be "let the games begin" with tiny coal burners zooming back and forth. There is a little 3/4" scale Invicta setting in the shop that I just can't wait to build a fire in and have a go with. Too much fun! So here are some snappies for you to look at. The first is the 12 foot long frame for the switch, two and three are the switch pivot, and latch bits. When the latch pin is fully engaged it will activate the signals.
Attachments
Switch1.jpg
SwitchPivot.jpg
SwitchLatch.jpg

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:30 am

Here are a few more. The first is the water line past the half way water tank , on to the steaming bays and then out towards the mountain division loop to water the trees. A back hoe sure is a handy little trinket to have laying around. The next photo is the mountain division cut. This one went much faster than the valley division cut. Photo number three here is of the mountain division fill. It's about five feet high at it's highest point and seven feet wide at the top, lots of bucket loads of material, most of which came out of the cut. Photo four here is of the valley division fill which was completed last winter. You can see some of the trees just starting to turn their fall colors. The trees are mostly just little twigs for now and there are around 100 of them planted around the railway. The valley division has quaking Aspens, poplars, Arizona ash, honey locust, red and silver maples, hybrid willows, silver birch, and Chinese pistache. The mountain division has Douglas fir, Austrian black forest pines, Italian stone pines, giant thuja, giant sequoia, and Colorado blue spruce. Not to mention the native junipers. Grow trees grow!
Attachments
WaterLine.jpg
Mtn.Div.Cut.jpg
MtnDiv.Fill.jpg
ValleyDiv.Fill.jpg
Last edited by JBodenmann on Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:39 am

One last photo for now. A beautiful Tehachapi sunset. I really look forward to having a gaggle of live steam model builder friends over to run tiny coal burners and do some pointin' and talkin'. In a few years once the place is done, I would like to have the small scale meet there. It's just a small railway but I think we could make due. No shortage of things to do!
See you in the funny pages..
Jack
Attachments
Sunset.jpg

Andy R
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by Andy R » Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:11 pm

Jack,
Regarding the photo of the end of the fill of the Mtn. Div., (with the hood of the tractor in the foreground):
Are you going to build a bridge there?
Or put in a culvert?
Or more fill?
Regards,
Andy
p.s. It's looking good.

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:25 pm

What you see is the end of the uncompleted fill. When that photo was taken there was about seventy feet of fill to be put in place. It's now completed. Woo hoo!
Jack

jcbrock
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by jcbrock » Wed Nov 19, 2014 9:05 pm

Great progress Jack. I will be interested in your updates as you continue building the turnout, as we're likely re-doing our turnout at the St Croix and adding a few more. We're considering an arrangement where you have fixed and curved segments that roll/slide in to form the route: a transfer table with two tracks, one straight and one curving to match the diverging route. Our experience with changing-length rail has been bad, so we are trying to eliminate that and use a fixed-length section. What we would really like is something with a mechanism that can be thrown from onboard the train.

Returning to an earlier topic, I picked up some 1/4 x 1 hot rolled after talking to the Manitoba guys, as they use it for rail. It seems awfully stiff to bend without rolling, but I intend to try it for our anti-tip rails and possibly as a rail for additional gauges. They say it'll work, but it is likely I won't find out until springtime as that annoying white stuff has started to arrive.
John Brock

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:48 pm

Hi John
Thank you for the complements. I was up at the railway this weekend and started on the final grading. This final grading and earth compacting was where the switch will be. It will have concrete footings at each end with threaded studs sticking up so that everything will be adjustable. Just because there is some concrete in the ground that doesn't mean that things won't settle. I like your idea of the movable span with both curved and straight sections, but I have already started my switch, and had I not, I would be seriously considering your idea. Waushakum's switch works fine and I think I can make mine work as well. I will keep you all informed as progress progresses. I have also been considering 1" x 1/4" hot rolled for the anti tip rails. My plan is to weld them together end to end in a straight configuration and then fit and weld them to the cross bars on the uprights. I will have to make some simple fixture to hold them when they are welded end to end as this will be done in the field. I plan on getting a John deer Gator and fitting it out as a little welding truck with either a Miller or Lincoln gas engine welding rig, an oxy acetylene set and some tool boxes and vise. I think this little trinket will come in most handy as I have a few other projects in mind. No shortage of things to do!
Jack

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Sun Mar 01, 2015 3:05 pm

Hello My Friends
It's been a while since an update was posted so here is what has been happening. The main priority has been the high line switch, so here are some of the components. The first photo shows the latch plates and the tubes that plungers for the micro switches for the signals will go through. The tubes will pass through the pillars and be welded in place. The second photo shows the plunger and return spring and the third photo the plunger spring and latch plate which will hold them in place. In photo four you can see how the latch plate retains the plunger. When the switch is aligned and the latch pin is engaged fully it will push in the plunger and trigger the micro switch and set the signal to either green or red, or green, red, or yellow if you are aligned with the turntable. Photo number five shows both sides of the pillars. The left pillar shows the plunger out the backside where it will trigger the switch. I still have to make an enclosure to mount the switch and conduit and protect the switch. The pillars will mount to the concrete base with four 1/2" studs. The other holes in the pillars are for the mounting bolt for the 2"x6" pressure treated supports for the ties and track.
Attachments
LatchBits.jpg
Plunger.jpg
Plunger&Latch.jpg
PillarComplete.jpg
Pillars.jpg

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JBodenmann
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Re: Alcalde & Coalfield High Line

Post by JBodenmann » Sun Mar 01, 2015 3:23 pm

Now here is the cool part. The switch its self. This was just a mock up to see if, and how things were going to work. There are no ties yet as I just ordered the material for them. I am getting some dark brown Trex material which will be cut into ties, 3200 of them. Then they will be pre drilled in the drilling fixture. Photo two shows a closer view with the switch in the straight, or main line configuration. You can also see the rollers that allow the rails to shift when the switch is moved. And the third photo shows the switch in the curved position which will align it with the turntable. The rails are 1/4" x 3/4" hot rolled steel. The plates that hold the rollers and slide sideways will slide on teflon sheets that will be recessed in the tops of the ties. I was very pleased at how well the switch works and what a smooth even curve the rails form. The next step will be to cut and fit the ties to the switch, get everything painted and then up to the railway and finally installed. Then the turntable and steaming bays will go in. The plan is to get moved to Tehachapi this summer and then progress on the railway should move along quite nicely.
No shortage of things to do!
Jack
Attachments
Switch.jpg
Switch2.jpg
Switch3.jpg

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