coaster

Eurobricks Citizen
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  1. The colors of the samples are darker. The mold shop just used a stock gray for these samples. We have color-matched coupons, so production parts will match the dark bley as closely as possible.
  2. Thanks all. @Ludo, I've looked at a couple distribution options, but I haven't gotten in touch with anyone yet. It's on the to-do list. @BMW, I noticed that too. The studs are about .001-.002" undersized. It's being addressed. EDIT: By the way, here's a picture of the "field test" of R104s at Brickworld. NILTC was kind enough to rip out a corner of ME tracks:
  3. Hi Ludo, they won't cost anything. These corrections are within the original scope of work, so it's on the toolmaker to fix. Otherwise, the studs are a bit undersizeds, so that's being corrected as well. They work fine, but I'd like it to be better. The bottom clutch and connection with other tracks is perfect though. They'll correct the tool and then send me new samples. Once I approve those, it'll be full-tilt production! And at that point, I'll open it up for pre-orders.
  4. As promised, here are pictures of the production samples. There are a few minor bugs to be addressed (such as the missing "BT" mark on the studs), but overall, they came out really well.
  5. That is correct. I'll post pictures later this weekend. There are a few minor bugs, but they came out great. A couple easy fixes and they'll be perfect.
  6. They'll be sold in sets of 8, and it'll be $29.95 for the R104s and $34.95 for the R120s.
  7. Thanks. Hopefully this is the first of many molds to be made. Those trenches are what are known as runners. The plastic injects into the very center between the runners in what is called the sprue, and the runners supply the plastic to the forms. The small point contact where the runners meet the forms are called gates. After molding, the sprue and runners are broken off and recycled, leaving just the tracks.
  8. Hmmm, I wonder what these might make...
  9. Hi @Rail Co, you haven't really missed much. I have the models available on Shapeways, but they're not cheap. Sadly, there's little I can do about that because Shapeways sets their price. Molded versions will be way cheaper. I do have R104 and R120 injection molded curves coming out soon, and once I can get those out in the field and get activity going, I'll relaunch the kickstarter for the switches. Tracks will only be PF for now, but I'm building flexibility into the tooling to allow me to expand to 9V in the future. Most of our conversation lately has been centered around switch design details and testing. I'm in a bit of holding pattern until the tooling for the curves is complete, but once it is, we'll rock and roll.
  10. Seems like the consensus is to go with the angled guards. I'll fix up the switches and double crossover to reflect the change. As for strength, I'm not worried about it. Only the one side of the turn-out guards are cantilevered, and they're really just for show. The wheel flanges should never actually come in contact at that point. Also, the LEGO 9V ones, as Ludo pointed out above, didn't even bother with the support ribs, though they were added to the PF mold. I think breaking off a connecting end is more likely (I've got a few of those that haven't fully survived). And don't worry, there are no plans to use any hollow studs.
  11. 1) Depends on your printer. If you have something like a Makerbot, it'll be ok, but not stellar. It will hold up pretty well. If you have access to a high end printer ($50k+), it'll be awesome. 2) Depends on the model. I've downloaded a few of those, but some have been way off dimensionally. Probably a result of someone tweaking the model for their own printer. Overall, the 3D printed track works, but the connections do wear out after a little bit of play.
  12. Before and after on the guard rails: Yay or nay on the change? @Ludo Here's a closer view of the switch stand: Note the axle hole goes all the way through: The switch turntable goes 180°, and actuates the throw bar close-far-close. This way, you can set it on either side and set it to point the direction of travel.
  13. Hi Ludo, I understand. I don't mind deviating from the LEGO design. There's a number of aspects where I question why they did it the way they did, or I recognize they cut corners on the tooling. My objective though is to have my tracks blend seamlessly with the LEGO ones. The focus should be on the layout as a whole, so there needs to be some level of cohesiveness. It could be because I focus on tracks that I notice, but I dislike the overall appearance of the ME rails because they don't blend well with the LEGO ones. I find the differences distracting. Something like angling the guard rails though is innocent enough. HERETIC! :) If you're not opposed to cutting tiles, it may be better to simply break off the posts on the underside. This will allow you to slide the tile off center from the studs, and in a couple places fit the entire tile between the guard.
  14. When I started the project, there was no way I could compete with the standard LEGO straight. You could get them for $.50 or less. Now they go for about $2.50, but there's knock-off versions from China that can be had for $1. That said, I will have to make a tool that has some small straights to pair with the switches, and I've been asked about 2x and 4x straights before. I'll see what can be added to the tooling, there may be something there. A 2x straight though would probably be $3.50-4.00; about the same as what ME is asking.
  15. I'll play with the guard rails tonight, see what it would take to add the 15°. As long as we don't have to lose any studs, I'm fine with making the change. @davidzq I've toyed with that exact idea regarding the studs. There's no clean way to get the studs in there, even going halvsies. Here's some tile area sketched over the studs: Note that I can get an additional half towards the frog, but there's nothing really to the left towards the outer guard because of the support ribs. I can certainly hollow the studs, that's easy to do, but unless you've got super-secret 1x2.5 tiles, there's no point to it. In places where a half-stud does because an option though, I will hollow those to make it clear they're shifted off the other studs. @TCRR Constitution Well, I'll have the larger curves soon. Even though the project didn't reach it's funding, I ponied up and bought some of the tooling, because I'm confidant I can recoup it. And, I will relaunch the kickstarter soon for the switches. I was shooting to have it ready to go mid-June, but I may delay it a bit to give the new curves time to get out into the market. But even if I never get a funded kickstarter project, I'm determined to bring these tracks to bear. Money that I make from the R104 and R120 curves will be directly reinvested in additional tooling.