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Love the pictures Steve. Great to see another Aussie big-big enthusiast.
Awesome Steve – this will be great for keeping some locos going! I don’t need motors at the moment but know what to do next time I need one :-).
Hi Steve, not any more: I bought one on eBay and also got one in an otherwise wrecked Hymek. I did have one that failed on me because the brushes actually wore out – it’s the only one that I have seen fail. I think it was simply used to failure.
Hi Trains2064, I just looked at the Churchrail Youtube video – WOW!! What a layout. I avoided using points at Adelaide because of the risk of derailments, so am impressed that you had the confidence to use them!
Hi Steve, you inspired me to get a red one for my display in Adelaide – thanks! I never knew they existerd until I read your post. I did not get a caramel one though – too rare!
Regards, Mike, Adelaide.
Nice set! From the pictures on the box, it looks as if there might have been a toy car included: was there?
Regards, Mike, Adelaide.
PS – I had an 0-6-0 tank painted as Thomas the Tank Engine – that was wildly popular with kids and parents alike!
Good question: I was focused very-much on the mechanics of making the whole display work for 3 days. Feedback from the crowd was really positive: most kids who visited the display enjoyed it a lot, because they could set the signals, stop the trains and start them again, raise and lower the level-crossing barriers. A lot of layouts at the show were strictly ‘hands off”, so mine was a nice change for the kids and parents and I encouraged touching and playing. On the outside loop, I had bogie-wagons carrying lollies (sweets) and instructions how to stop the train, take a sweet and re-start the train, so that was popular. Surprisingly, the bells on the stations were hardly touched – even though I showed the kids how to make noise with them! A number of older guys told me that they remembered Big-Big and were interested to know what became of it. A few people told me that they had some, but they had never before seen such a big layout. About four times I was asked where to buy it – I referred them to your web site, eBay and Vincent Tuinder. A lot of times people asked me what gauge it was: I took it for granted that people would know it was 0-gauge, but in South Australia the popular gauges are N, HO and Gauge 1 (or G-Gauge – for Garden Gauge). 0-gauge is popular in some of the States in Australia, but not all. So: all-in-all, really good responses from the crowd. And I enjoyed it too :-).
Hi there, from all I have seen, been told, read, searched-for, etc, I am pretty sure that the yellow 0-6-0 tank was never made.
I learned a lot showing a layout for three days. I had the three ovals plus I had two tracks with trains running back-and-forth using reversing switches. The first thing I learned is just how long the batteries last – remarkably, a set of batteries typically lasted for 8-10 hours. I thought I would be changing batteries hourly, but not at all. The batteries were inexpensive ones as well – $1 each (in Australian dollars). Next the importance of lubricating the rolling stock. I used Pecolube on the wagon wheels and locomotive motors, and Labelle 106 for the coach wheels and the locomotive wheels and gears. I needed to re-lubricate the locomotives after about 10 hours of running. I found that the reversing switches only worked reliably on my 0-6-0 tanks; the Hymeks and 0-4-0’s often missed the reversing switches and ran-on. I think the reason is because the reversing switches warp outwards with time, so they probably need supporting to keep them truly vertical to operate the Hymek and 0-4-0 reversing switches. Reversing the 0-6-0’s ongoing for 3 days was punishing for them, and there was wheel wear (evident because of a lot of red dust where they were reversing). The barrel loaders were quite unreliable with the bogie wagons, because the bogie wagons have lower sides than do the normal, 4-wheel wagons so the contact time with the trigger is less. Also, any train at speed through the barrel loader rendered it very unreliable, so I needed low-speed trains to be sure of success. I also used some of my clockwork Hornby 0-gauge engines and they ran really smoothly on the plastic track. Great fun. Also very tiring!