Upgrading the Pokey

Discussion in 'Divisions' started by RogerRT, May 11, 2017.

  1. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Taking a week vacation so I decided to bite the bullet and start upgrading the Pokey. Like I said before I built the Pokey using switches & track recovered from my old layouts, what I didn't realize was the Pokey would would be the best & most enjoyable layout I have built (so far). I'll be retiring from the BNSF in 6 years & plan on moving back to the Thayer area, since this is the last layout I will built at this location I decided to upgrade to top-of-the line products. I figured I would start with south end of Pocahontas Yard since this area caused me the most problems, derailments, shorts, etc.. I chose Peco because they had the only curved turnout (ST-244) that would fit at the south end of Pocahontas Yard, this switch only came in code 100 so I guess I stick with that size of rail. I will also be installing Tortoise switch machines in the process, something I have never used before. I figured I wasn't to lazy to reach across & throw a switch, but I can't tell you how many times I reached across & knocked off a telegraph arm, shorted out the DCC when my watch touched the rail, or my sleeve clipped a car & knocked it over. The less you cross the fascia line the better. Roger

    img840.jpg
     
  2. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    First thing I ran a cleanup train with GP7 #500 & caboose #1261, once the train cleared the branch I took all the buildings off. This is what the problem area looks like with everything removed...The box cutter blade in the 2nd photo is what I use to pull out the track nails, works like a charm...

    001.JPG 003.JPG 004.JPG
     
  3. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    The 1st cut is the hardest, here you see how I install switches...I put 2 base wood ties on each side of the switch points to keep the area underneath free of obstacles...This will also be a good way to install & keep the tortoise switch machine working trouble free (I think)...

    005.JPG 006.JPG 007.JPG
     
  4. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    The track nails & Caboose Ind. switch throws are removed, with the Tortoise machines I will be able to use a more realistic throws...The crossing is dug out & both will be completely removed after the rebuild...

    010.JPG 011.JPG
     
  5. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    After a good soaking of 50/50 rubbing alcohol & water, time to yank the track up...

    015.JPG 017.JPG 019.JPG
     
  6. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Once the track is gone, time to yank up the cork...Surprisingly the original marking I used to lay the cork was still there...That's all for today, took about 2 hours start to finish ...time to let everything settle down & dry out...

    021.JPG 023.JPG
     
  7. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Time for another update...I tried to install the new switches but every time I got one thing done another issue popped up. There were other things that bothered me like HWY 62/67 along the back wall & the sloped embankment leading up to it. As much as I tried I could not find the space to do it justice so I decided to take it out. It was a hard decision to make but it would have taken up half the layout. With all these changes I figured the best thing to do was a complete rebuild from the ground up. The photos show some of the space issues with the HWY...

    003.JPG 008.JPG
     
    Ozarktraveler likes this.
  8. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    So I decided to do a complete rebuild, 1st thing I did was strip almost everything north of the bridge down to the blue board & push the embankment back, these photos were before I took up the HWY area..

    009.JPG 010.JPG
     
    FriscoCharlie likes this.
  9. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Now that I have a clean slate I installed the new embankment which is now 3-1/2" from the wall...

    023.JPG 024.JPG
     
    FriscoCharlie likes this.
  10. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Once that was done time work in the new yard, I started at the north end & worked my my south. I've tried other roadbed methods but I always come back to Midwest cork...some habits never change...

    027.JPG 028.JPG
     
    FriscoCharlie likes this.
  11. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    And here we are today, I finished laying the ground foam on the new embankment, all it needs now is to blend in the splices & add some lichen, fence posts & telegraph poles. Also finished laying out the south end of the yard, almost ready for B&B to lay the new track. The new yard look bigger but there is only 1 new track & they are longer, plus now I have plenty of room for industries...that's it for now...Roger

    001.JPG 015.JPG 008.JPG 010.JPG
     
  12. Jim James

    Jim James Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Wow. That's looking very nice especially with the backdrop. Thanks for the update.
     
    gjslsffan likes this.
  13. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    A really great looking job you are doing. I wish I had paid more attention to the backdrops here :(
     
  14. yardmaster

    yardmaster Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    Roger, enjoying the step-by-step walkthrough of the upgrade. Keep 'em coming. Slowly but surely I'm getting inspired to spend more time indoors working on train stuff as it gets warmer.

    Best Regards,
     
  15. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Looks like all the hoggers decided to stay marked up this weekend so I got a little time off between runs to do an update. The track is all down, wired & painted, I wired up the tortoise switch machines & built a control panel with toggle switches. One thing I learned real quick is to use strand wire instead of solid on the toggle switches as the solid will break off with all the handling otherwise it was a lot easier than it looked. I wired 9 of the 11 switches with switch machines as the 2 curved switches were located where it was impossible to wire. The 1st one off the bridge the wire would have been a foot long & the other had a 1X4 right under it. I put a couple of old toggle switches on the control just for looks, they don't control anything.

    021.JPG 022.JPG 023.JPG 024.JPG
     
    Ozarktraveler and paul slavens like this.
  16. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Here's a couple of overhead shots...

    030.JPG 034.JPG
     
    Ozarktraveler likes this.
  17. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Before I painted the track I ran a test train with my worst bad actors to see if there any problem areas, these 3 cars will find any flaw. They found only 1 place where the solder was a little high, but no derailments.

    066.JPG 064.JPG
     
    Ozarktraveler likes this.
  18. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Now that sounds familiar..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 17, 2017 at 11:55 AM
    RogerRT likes this.
  19. RogerRT

    RogerRT Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    So now it was time to see if there was any shorts so I ran a cab hop with the 500 & 28 to check out the track & retrieve the cars.

    075.JPG 076.JPG

    After setting out #28 to the pocket track I ran the power down every track & over every switch to look for problems. After not finding any, time for lunch & play a game of pitch in the caboose...

    084.JPG

    After lunch time to get the train together & head back for Hoxie...That's all for now...Roger

    090.JPG 094.JPG
     
  20. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Looking good Roger.
     

Share This Page