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admin 27.12.2015

Both the road and sidewalks are painted styrene and reflects the crossing before the 2010 road widening on Douglas. Since the street grid intersects the backdrop at an angle I'm not sure that photo backdrops will be effective.
However my concern is that since the road intersects at an angle that I would never get the perspective correct. One thing I notice about prototype grade crossings is that the roads are flat and level both sides on highways.
The first person who commented, Kevin sent me a picture of street scene I used on my layout. Use the form below to delete this Beckman Family Smiles Heading West On The First Train In Hawaii image from our index.
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Fortunately, there are many products already on the market to make a project like this easy enough for even a beginner to implement. For this project, a pair of NJ International crossbucks, FlashMaster circuit and additional detector cable (for a second track) were required. For this project, optical sensors included with the NJ International detection circuit were used. For multiple tracks, or for more intricate installations like this (a multiple track crossing in the middle with switches on either side of the road within the activation zone,) additional sensors must be added.These optical sensors rely on a steady source of light directly in line with the sensor. I completed the installation for one track and tested the system before adding additional sensors for the additional track.To install the detectors, simply drill a hole between two ties.

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The difficult part that was concerning me was trying to form the styrene strips so that they would fit in between the rails, form naturally around the guard rails and would look prototypical. My idea was to cut out the sections of the template and then glue these onto the styrene and use these as master templates. The first series of strips is 0.75mm these are cut to a width of 12mm and are placed in between the inner rails, and in between the tie plate details.
Once the packing strip was installed I test fitted the top strip to ensure that there was clearance for the wheel flanges passing between the strips and the inner rail edge. The next series of pieces to be installed were the diverging route, straight section of unloading siding and the small section in between the two turnouts.
Overall this has been a great and fulfilling project to complete, not only because I found a workable solution and fairly easy method of cutting and installing the section. The next stage will involve finishing off the remaining loading dock area and the metal fabrication siding to the right of the grade crossover.
Hope you all enjoyed this and get something out of it, and as always look forward to your comments and questions. Well yesterday work continued on laying the concrete unloading area for the Warehouse and the Metal Stamping Plant, within the Appliance Manufacturing Plant. This process is the same for the section in between the track as what I used in the crossover, the remaining section had 3mm cork roadbed added first then the 1.0mm sheet styrene laid over the top to again just finish under the top of the rail. Then using pressure I run my fingers of both section of the rail to leave a indentation in the paper and the paper to be cut out. Once the section is cut out I then place it into the section and trim and alter it to suit, it is taking me about 30 min to complete both sides on the centre rail section. More like proto-freelanced, but the proto bit refers to the actual railroads (Conrail, Reading Lines & Chessie System) and eras more Andy. If you additionally match that narrower flange way on both sides of the insert,  you could have the plastic inserts ending up wider than the back to back of the wheels.
The advice of using the twin nubs of the NMRA gauge for FW's is definitely recommended.
This is best I Have seen, it really looks better if you get a chance to operate this fantastic layout. The signals, circuits and detection for this HO scale project are made by NJ International. Instructions are included with the FlashMaster circuit to replace these with other detection methods if you so desire.This board uses three sensors per track to detect a coming train from either direction. When a train (or anything else) brakes this light beam, it activates the sensor and the circuit. You can do this with a train car, or your finger.When you first turn on the power, the crossing lights should not flash. Meredith is the only grade crossing that features gates on the prototype so I wanted to include all the bells and whistles. I placed masonite pads underneath the layout to give the bellcranks something to stick to, but I'm still tweaking them.

The Walthers cantilevered signals also need a bit of work to make them more realistic, mostly in the form of paint.
Up next is adding scenery and blending the road into the ground, as well as some general weathering.
From a simple warning sign to a complex array of lights, gates and bells, keeping the public and their vehicles out of the way of a train is a matter of grave importance.Crossings are an great modeling project as well and can be incorporated easily into just about any scene. This company makes amazingly accurate signals (both for crossings and other railroad signals) and many accessories in several scales. It also interprets the inputs from the detectors to know when a train is approaching and when it has passed.
If doing it before, consider making the signals removable, or plan to cover them during the scenery work.
The base can be easily hidden under a little bit of groundcover.Let the wires dangle below the platform for now, they will be hooked up soon. For this reason, NJ International recommends placing the sensors in the track, with a light source somewhere overhead.You can angle the sensors a little if necessary to avoid shadows (like from people watching and running the trains) triggoring a false activation.
The wires to the signals are top right, and wires to the six detectors are along the bottom. If they do, you probably have a single sensor that is not getting enough light and is reading as if a train is present.Turn the power off and shine some extra light (a flashlight works) directly on one of the sensors.
So if you match the guard rail flange way on the same side, you will likely have the plastic working as a continuous rubbing guard rail. Add the animation of flashing lights as the train approaches and they become even more interesting.
If you need help with the scenery, follow these step-by-step instructions used to complete the paved crossing seen here.Drill a hole next to the road. This tells the board when a train is approaching, when it is on the road, and when it has passed. This particular installation was part of a night scene some careful light placement was required, but still possible.
In this installation, the board was attached to the accessory wiring bus which supplies a constant 12 Volts of DC current to the many lights on this level. Then simply plug them onto the board.Connect the proper output wires from the signal wire to the leads from the signals themselves.
The gates are powered with a Tortoise switch motor and two Circuitron Remote Signal Activators.
For example, the NJ International flashing circuit and detection could be used to operate signals from a different company or in a different scale.No two installations are ever exactly the same, but the steps shown here will work for most. The hole must be large enough to accept the wires and any resitors or diodes pre-wired onto the signals.

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