It's official, the layout has gone digital. Though DC was fun, playing keep-away by only using the turnouts...:
...but it's time to start implementing realistic operation. So DCC it is!
To make a quick connect/disconnect between the command station and layout I purchased these XLR Connectors. They seem able to handle any maximum amperage the command station should dish out.
Under the layout shot. The female XLR Connector was mounted to a small project box and then wired to the layout. The male in-line XLR Connector was wired to a 16awg 3 conductor cord (positive, negative, neutral) which is wired to the Command Station.
Anxious to move forward with this project, I stopped by the craft store to pick up some of their casting rubber~ Amazing Mold Rubber. And after some time and effort, well... I found it ain't so amazing. I'm sure its fine for most crafts, but not for precision casting. In a nutshell, it shrinks!
There it is! In all its pink glory. Or so I thought.
The shelf life of the resin is much better. It cast just fine and faithfully with no shrinkage. But when I compared the castings with the originals, there was about 10% shrinkage with the "Amazing" rubber.
So, I'll pay the small extra for the much better quality of the Oomoo rubber compound. Lesson learned.
The 9th Annual State of the Company, Board of Directors Meeting of
The Dan D. Sparks Plywood Development and Transportation Co.
A Dubiously Structured Corporation (the “Company”)
Held on 22nd September 2015, 10:ish AM Arbitrary Daylight Time
at the Car House Tavern, San Dollar, California.
Board Members Present:
President: Dan D. Sparks
Chairman: Lettuceleaf M. Malone
Traffic Manager: Robin DeRail
Finance Manager: Count DeMonet
Director of Development: Arnie Clever
General Manager: David Lyman
Quorum present? Who can tell?
Man of Mystery: Fred Gurzeler
Technology Genius: Volkmar Meier
Company Orchestra leader: Bill Bolton Orchestra & Surf Band
· Chair, Lettuceleaf M. Malone called the Meeting to order at some point.
- Secretary Mrs, Roundbottom recorded the minutes between sipping her Gin Fizz .
· Secretary Roundbottom presented to the Board the minutes of the Sept. 2014 meeting of the Board for approval, whereupon motion duly made, seconded and toasted with another round of drinks.
Opening Message from Chairman:
Pompous windbags - The whole lot of them! I (Secretary Roundbottom) am supposed to be recording the speeches of these gentlemen, but between these marvelous Gin Fizz's and all this bellowing, I just can't be bothered. Truth be told they are all a lazy lot. Between Mr. Sparks racing his yacht (or whatever these moguls do), Mr Malone playing the ponies, and General Manager Lyman always loitering at the Nickelodeon and doodling cartoons all day, its amazing this enterprise is afloat at all!
Well, I suppose I should pay attention and record these proceedings. At the very least it should be entertaining to listen how these gentlemen will endeavor to put a positive spin on such a dismal year! So if anyone is interested here you go:
· Traffic Managers Report Provided by Chair:
Aye! The programs I instituted to remove nefarious characters and scalawags from eating up valuable bandwidth from this blog has been highly successful! See for yerselves:
Unique weekly blog hits (visitors, not page hits) from 9/22/2014 to 9/21/2015:
Overcrowded cars have been cleared out nicely! This blog hosted 3,294 visitors this last year (Sept. 2014 to Sept. 2015). That's down from a crushing 4,930 last year, and 3,355 the year before that. They visited 5,521 times, down from 8,960 times last year and 6,621 times the year before that. That makes for an all time grand total of 42,154 visitors. I'm quiet proud of that I am!
This blog is now averaging 21 visitors per day. These viewers of quality have a much longer attention span! Their attention has increased to over 2 minutes (2:09 minutes)! That's down from 29 average daily viewers watching for an average of only 1:58 last year!
Due to the way Google displays data now, it is no longer possible to ascertain what the top 3 posts for last year were. But it is possible for an all time basis, which are:
So to sum up: Less loiterers, and more viewers of quality! Aye!
· Finance Committee report provided by Chair:
A happy side effect of reduced ridership has been less heavy coins in the fairbox for the cars to have to carry around (It takes two large men to carry one of those!). The company should be seeing some significant savings from the reduction of weight!
The Count reported that revenue earned took a dive to an average of $0.03 per day, down from an average of $0.05 per day last year and $0.06 per day the previous year.
DeMonet continued with that the annual earnings for this last fiscal year came in at $10.18. Down from $19.43 last year and $22.78 the previous year. This now brings the grand total to $91.87. Google won't pay out until that total reaches $100, expected sometime this next "fiscal year" (Sept. to Sept.). The Board has agreed that the money will be put towards a DCC system for the layout.
· Board Development Committee's report provided by Chair,
Mr. Clever expressed his dissatisfaction that nobody listens to him and his planning has come to naught.
Despite this situation however, Arnie has carried forth and has been looking into robotics and automation with promising results. Some of which shall be instituted in the very near future!
Mr. Sparks' closing speech summed up his concern that the company has been seriously neglected and it's time to roll up our sleeve and make some significant progress on the layout.
And with that, Orchestra leader Bolton struck up the Orchestra/Surf Band with a rendition of Tales of a Raggy Tramline:
· Meeting adjourned around Noonish.
· Minutes submitted by a very tipsy Secretary, Mrs. Roundbottom.