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Treatise on overhead construction
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 Posted: Sat May 18th, 2013 06:47 pm
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Herb Kephart
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Like a lot of things Bill, it depends.

Without knowing what the HO pieces that you have in mind look like, I would say that if they are anywhere close to scale for HO, the drops (the vertical pieces between the arc and the running wire) will be far too close together for O. Remember On30 is still O SCALE, that is 1/48.

But-- buy a piece, lash up something quick to hold it up above the car roof an appropriate amount, and see what it looks like to YOU--that's the main criteria.

Herb



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 Posted: Tue Jul 9th, 2013 04:02 pm
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ebtnut
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Just as an update, we finally obtained the line poles from two different sources (Alpine and Brian Weisman).  The Weisman poles are nice because he has threaded the bottom for a No. 6 machine screw so you can install the poles from the underside without the nuts showing and you can get the screws in various lengths from your local hardware supplier to match the roadbed thickness (he supplies them with         1 1/4" screws, which are fine for 1" thick roadbed).  I got the poles for the loop installed plus two sets of span wire poles for street running this past weekend.  Next time I'm up I hope to install a bunch of the bracket arm poles along the PROW to the next town and try stringing some wire.  The loop is going to be "fun".  I anticipate lots of pull-offs in addition to the wire frog.  Is it still SOP to locate the frog by pushing your cars through the divering route until the pole pops off? 

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 Posted: Tue Jul 9th, 2013 10:22 pm
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Herb Kephart
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Till the pole jumps off the wire is a bit too far into the diverging route most times.

See the pix and method in post 34 here, for the method that I use.

And send us some photos of what you are doing--

Herb



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 Posted: Wed Jul 10th, 2013 01:13 pm
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ebtnut
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One thing occurs to me - we plan to go to DCC on the trolley (as well as the main layout).  Any thoughts on what I need to do about reversing the current once the overhead is in place?  We can deal with the current two-rail setup, which will likely last at least through the up-coming holiday open houses.  But if there are insulators that need to be installed, now would be the time to do it.  Also, I'll need some insight into how to post photos on this board when I get some ready.

DM

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 Posted: Thu Jul 11th, 2013 11:45 am
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Herb Kephart
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Regarding your two points-

I have always sectionalized the track, and had the overhead continuous, so never worried about insulators (which are always--like the rest of overhead components, overscale) I dont understand what you are referring to when you say "reversing the current". With DCC there isn't any reason to do so--is there?

Posting photos is covered in the first couple forums in the General Talk section. For some reason, no one seems to read what is there.  L: L:


Herb



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 Posted: Thu Jul 11th, 2013 01:30 pm
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W C Greene
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Looking at this from a "biased" viewpoint, I imagine that the layout is DCC which means that there are "positive & negative" rails (yes, I know it is AC delivery) which need to be insulated properly. When a powered overhead wire is introduced, there just may be some sort of imbalance in the force...or something like that. The beauty of overhead is that the track can be built just like I build it...no reguard for polarity since both rails are "negative" and the wire is "positive"...(I imagine).
Therefore, uness some smart fellow figures this out, I would think that trolley/traction operation on a DCC layout might require (1) the overhead connected to one feed, track the other...or (2) forget powering the overhead and just use the DCC the way it was intended-2 rail pickup. Get my drift? One or the other it seems.

Woodie



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 Posted: Mon Jul 15th, 2013 10:35 am
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ebtnut
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Woodie: Your raise an interesting philosophical point. With DCC being essentially "polarity neutral" for lack of a better term at the moment, using the overhead for one side of the power does essentially become optional. Purists would insist that I you're going to all the work of installing overhead, you should use it. Others might say it gives the right look, but if your two-rail works, go with it. Might have to cogitate on this for a while. I still intent to put in the overhead and make it work functionally, so the option will be there.

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 Posted: Mon Jul 15th, 2013 10:17 pm
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Herb Kephart
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One thing to keep in mind.

If you use the overhead for power, and the pole jumps off the wire--the car stops.

If the overhead is "dead" and the pole jumps off the two rail power keeps the car going.

Then the pole goes along bouncing off the cross spans, until it gets snagged on something in the overhead. Not good for the pole. Not good for the overhead. Good for laughs when the car does a "wheelie", providing it isn't your car or overhead.

NOT recommended.

Herb



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 Posted: Mon Jul 15th, 2013 11:37 pm
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W C Greene
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In other words...run overhead as God intended. Positive on the wire, negative on the track. Or be an attentive motorman while running the car.

"'Taint funny McGee!"
Woodie



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 08:19 pm
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ebtnut
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Herb:  Point VERY well taken.  You can get away with non-powered overhead in a case like the Pennsy guy where everything has pantagraphs.  But simple trolley operation is a different breed.  I had enough poles pop off the wire when I was a member of a trolley museum to know that.  Fortunately we normally never got much past 20 mph so didn't wreck any span wires. 

DM

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