Saturday, May 28, 2016

A New Kitchen part 14

I made good progress today despite having a few minor setback this morning.  I got started around 9am this morning gathering up the parts for each cabinet and preparing them for assembly, then getting the tools lined up.

The first cabinet I started with was a drawer stack. 

Then the upper cabinet that goes directly above it.

By lunchtime I had six of the cabinets assembled, stacked and drying. 

After lunch I got the last two cabinet assembled, the two biggest ones.  The sink upper [which is upside down]

And the sink base which is freshly clamped and drying.

I might try to go back over tonight and get the nail strips added in and then flush routered and fill the nail holes so that I can get them sanded and stained on Sunday.  But I don't know, the couch feel pretty good right now...

Jump to A New Kitchen pt 15

Friday, May 27, 2016

A New Kitchen part 13

Well almost 4 months later and I'm finally ready to get back to the cabinets.
I left off the progress after I most of the most of the components ready.  The next step was to get the cabinet boxes cutout and built.

This afternoon I finally found some router time!  Within 2 hours I had all the parts cut out and ready to assemble for the 8 cabinet boxes I need to build.  Damn!  The time saved and the accuracy of CNC routers is incredible, doing this by hand on the table saw would have taken a day or more to get the same results.  

The material list called for 7 sheets of 3/4" C3 Maple plywood, 2 sheets of 3/4" Ash plywood and four sheets of 1/4" Birch plywood for the backs.

After the router was done I ended up with this cart of parts and a few parts stacked up waiting for assembly.

With the 3 day holiday weekend I'm hoping to have all eight cabinets assembled, sanded and ready for stain bu Monday night.  If things go real good I'm gonna try like hell to get the boxes stained and finished as well.

Jump to A New Kitchen pt 14

Thursday, May 12, 2016

"What am I supposed to do now?"

Another project off my list of things to do while I'm waiting for time to get back to my cabinets.

I've been thinking about this for some time now, ever since the first few full blown sessions, before most of the crews had any ideas of what to do after having a throttle thrown in their hands!

Normally I would get a "Deer in the headlight look" or the first question was "What do I do now?"  In the past I've explained how and what each train does and what's expected of the crew and their responsibilities were.  But there is a lot to digest and to retain.  

Several weeks ago I was chatting with Greg in Texas (as he was thinking about a possible trip). During the phone call he asked if I had some sort of rule book or instructions?  I said no, but have been thinking of trying to come up with something.

So after discussing it with a few of the crew, Greg and Steven I sat down and came up with this.  These are printed on 3-7/8"w x 6-7/8"t  pieces of paper.  I picked up some clear plastic ID badges off of eBay and also grabbed a few lanyards with swivel snaps so we didn't need to carry them in hand.

One side has the general Operating Rules of the layout, the other side has the basic instructions for each train.  The instructions only explain what each train does during the session.  I left it up to the crews to decide how the cars are to be switched once they reach the industries.  

As a bonus, the four lanyards matches the colored tabs that each train works with. The Winnfield Turn works with Blue tabs so it's lanyard is blue. The Haskell Turn is green, The W&OV Razorback is Yellow.  I chose Red for the Main Yard operator. The rest will use velcro to keep them near there needed location,   I also added roads logo to each of the instructions.

We'll see how this works on the next session...

Saturday, May 7, 2016

New Tabs

So far the Tabs have been working very well for us, everyone loves them.  It has reduced the amount of paperwork I need to print off per session and now there is no need for the crews to carry anything around but the throttles.

One issue I've been struggling with however are the captive service cars.  One of the problems is that some of those cars do not reach El Dorado yard in time before one of the Turns leaves El Dorado yard.  Likewise the W&OV Razorback makes it to El Dorado and leaves the yard before some of the captive service cars can return to Malvern as well.  

So what we've been doing is to keep a supply of these captive service cars in El Dorado on a track we've designated as the "Pool Track"  Basically there is a day delay before these get switched on to the proper train.  Now when these cars are called for, the El Dorado crew collects them from the Pool Track.  

I also, while staging the layout, have to go through and make sure there are enough of these cars on hand that I can tab for that session.  It can get a bit confusing at times, both for me and the crew as the tabs we are using now are some of the same tabs with the same color and designations for where they are coming from and and going to.

After our last session a month ago, Quin started thinking about how to correct this as we had a few issues with misplaced cars.

What he came up with was to make a new Tab, color it orange for El Dorado and place a "Y" on it.  After further disscusion we decided to go a bit different route.   Since pick up tabs are WHITE, I would keep these new tabs White as well.  Instead of a "Y" I would use the designation "EDY" for El Dorado Yard.

So now when I stage the layout and I start placing the WHITE pickup tabs, I'll place a white tab with "EDY" on the captive service cars that will be picked up.   Now I can tell the crews WHITE tabs are the tabs you pick up from and industry, period, regardless what designation is on the tab. In Malvern this gets kind of confusing as there can be three colors of tabs that need to be picked up: White, Blue and Green!

When the white tabbed cars get to El Dorado, the yard crew can now easily separate the white NB, SB and EDY tabs and not worry about which track to put them on.  Likewise, when I stage the layout I can easily remove just the EDY tabs and can reload the captive service cars with the proper destination tabs for that session.

Clear as MUD?  Hopefully it will be.

In this case, the pulpwood flat is empty and sitting on the Crushmoore pulpwood spur and will ultimately return to the ICG at Ruston, LA.  The Malvern Switcher will pick it up because it's a WHITE tab.  When it reaches Malvern later, the El Dorado yard crew will just place it in the yard along with everything else.  Then when I restage the layout, if needed I'll place a BLUE ICG tab on it so the yard crew can add it to the Winnfield Turn.  If it's not called for, it will just sit at El Dorado without a tab until it's needed in a future session.

We'll see how it works on the next session, which will be shortly I hope...