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Found 91 results

  1. The Backstory: For years I've wanted to be able to display my 12v collection at shows/exhibitions/libraries or wherever, but the wiring is a challenge - I reckon on my last full layout there was 250 to 300 feet (75-90 metres) of the stuff, which on a static layout is one thing, but one built in modules for transport is a challenge. Three or four months ago I came up with a solution (more on that below) and the dreaming started. After much playing in Bluebrick, and nostalgic posts appearing here about older era trains, I settled on a plan. I still had a bunch of my old blue track from the 4.5v era, but no motors. Off we go to Bricklink then! The Layout So, here's the plan. Ten years ago I had a small portable layout on 4 modules, each 3x5 baseplates, and over the years have simply added more of these. Following my Bricklink spree, I now have 2 working 4.5v motors, so rebuilt the loco from set 183 and I have the loco from 7720 in progress. These 2 will feature on the 4.5v loop below, which is 3 of those modules. Next to the 4.5v loop will be the showpiece, the main 12v loops. 12v Lower by andyglascott, on Flickr And on the right of the layout will be the 9v loops. Unlike the other 2 eras, I will have 9v track left over, so this is likely to be expanded in due course, particularly as @michaelgale releases motors, power supply etc. 9v Loops by andyglascott, on Flickr Lastly, there will be another 12v loop, elevated, which will run across the back of all three eras. 12v Upper by andyglascott, on Flickr Putting all of those together looks like this (the white baseplates are roughly where the mountains, tunnels etc will be for the elevated sections. The green and grey sections are simply so I could keep track of where the 3x5 modules were to try and avoid having curves/points on more than one module. When it all comes together, in most likely a couple of years, I'll be able to run 6 trains at a time. Whole Layout by andyglascott, on Flickr The Beginning After all the planning, and clearing away of my last (incomplete) layout, I've finally started building the first module, part of the 4.5v loop. I decided to start here as this will be the quickest era to build, and to a large extent, each era can also be displayed as a stand-alone smaller layout. These three modules will be countryside/farmland, and the trains will reflect the farming side of it when they get built. Module 01 Pic 02 by andyglascott, on Flickr The 12v Wiring The solution that I've come up with is fairly simple, but does involve taking a drill to some baseplates.... At each of the 12v points or signals I'll drill a small hole through the baseplate and the wood for each module, thread the wire through and attach either the original Lego plugs or a quick connect/release plug/connector so that when the layout is set up I'll use already measured lengths of wire to go from that point to the control panels, which will be on their own module. This is going to be a heck of a journey, and build, I'll post updates from time to time, particularly at landmark moments such as completing an "era". I always said, growing up, I was keeping my Lego for my kids. It was really only an excuse, and I'm really glad I didn't sell my old blue track even though I didn't, for years, think I'd use it. Sadly my original 4.5v motors, battery boxes, lights and even signals are long gone, but I was only 7 or 8 when I got 7720....
  2. ThePhatController

    [MOC} CIE E428 Shunter in 12v

    I present my 12v recreation of the Coras Iompar Eireann (old name for Irish Rail) E428 diesel shunter. The E class (also called 421 class) was built in the Inchicore Works in the early 1960s and were retired in the early 1980s. This particular engine is located at a station in private ownership not far from where I live. The model is 6 wide and I tried to keep it as true to the 12v era as possible, including the full size train doors, no snots and all parts available in the 1980s up to the very early 1990s. (The orange colour arrived in 1993. I did try red originally but it need the orange for the iconic CIE colour scheme.) here is the photo I took of the original the shunter ran in both directions I added some engine detail... the 1 weight brick included is behind the first door so the grey brick is hiding it and the technic brick is on top of it. That's a technic cylinder at the back. i added some cab detail (based on some pictures I found online that I don't have a link to any more It runs well on my 12v R40 curves and switches. (No video yet as I had to move my layout) The front wheel is fixed and the motor pivots the back section also pivots to help keep the carriages connect through the switches. The carriage was also built to complete the display as per the real thing. Green train windows don't exist so I just used regular 1 x 4 x 3 windows and kept it 28 studs long. Comments and suggestions welcome!
  3. Hello all, A couple days back I posted a review on my YT channel about the 7740. I'm sure many of you know that set- it's a very iconic train, right up there with the Metroliner and Super Chief. I wanted to share it here for anyone looking for new information on it, or if you have no idea what the 7740 is and want to learn a little about the 12v system and its most iconic train. Hopefully this video contains valuable knowledge for you!
  4. Mine layout ain't what you can call small anymore, but I have to keep the 12v track clean. Otherwise it won't run badly or not. I made a short 5 min video how I clean and keep it clean the 12v track. Cleaning 12v track
  5. Hello EB, I don't think I have seen much information on the internet about this, so I thought I'd make a video (and share it here). Often when you're running 12v trains, metal rails and motor contacts become dirty with "black dust"- dust that settles on the rails and then is burned from the friction between the metal of the motor contacts and the metal of the rails. I am sure that other experienced 12v train fans out there know this and have your own way of cleaning the rails. I made a tutorial on how to clean rails and contacts, with easy to acquire materials- I use rubbing alcohol on a rag. Hopefully this video will help some of you, now and in the future, who are having difficulty with maintaining your 12v components!
  6. Reker1000000

    Lego 12v Layout 7

    I've made another 12v layout video, and this one includes an inner and outer loop, electrically connected through the points. The last clip took a couple of tries to film, since I had to do some quick point work and the trains collided in the first takes. These posts have been getting a lot of nice comments which means a lot to me as a content creator, and I'm glad people are enjoying my videos! I also have an extra clips video and a behind the scenes video, which I'll post links to in this thread as they release. Enjoy Layout 7!
  7. Hi all, since I read the very, very interesting thread about Torben Plagborg creations, I've been trying some new designs (some are just sketches, just to understand how things could work). Now, in this nice thread some nice 12v creations can be seen - but one captured my interest more than others. It's a little blue steamer with a black 12v motor. It seems pretty big, so I'd say it was an 8-wide experiment. In general, all the top shelves are very interesting. Starting from that little steamer, I began to think about a 12v locomotive in 8-wide. So I started designing another small steamer (I'd say a well known prototype): the great Deutsche Bundesbahn BR-80. 8-wide is not a common scale for me - I only tried it two times in my whole life, so it was a trial and error process. I tried to use parts that could have been available in the last 80s /first 90s - during the Phase II of the Gray Era and the advent of 9v era. And here it is...it recalls me a "fat" 7727/7730, with a touch of 7810... 8-wide gives some possibility also to work with odd number of studs (boiler is 5 studs wide instead of the classic 4-wide used in standard 12v steamers). I kept the standard cylinders, the ladders, rods, red buffers and magnets, which fit nicely an keep the 12v feeling alive. I used Some SNOT for the doors, using headlight bricks. Everything was already experimented at the time (e.g. the B-model wagon with horizontal sliding doors in 7735 instructions). Right side is quite symmetrical to the left one, apart some details. 12v motor looks nice, now that the body is correctly larger. Weights can sit on top of the motor - but the model could already be sufficiently heavy to have some decent traction and pulling power. I think adding lights won't be a problem nowadays, but for sure at the time (80s/90s) it could have been an additional challenge ! But...there are some issues that must be noted: The buffers overhang is quite...massive - and this SURELY will create problems with 12v switches, since the buffers will collide with the switching electric mechanism. Coupling wagons on R40 curves could be impossible...since this BR80 is longer than any other 12v locomotive or wagon not based on bogies chassis. Weight of a complete train could be excessive for the poor 12v motors. I think it has been a very fun experiment, a real "12v+" MOC...but being realistic - in my opinion it's too limited by the motor, wheels size...and 12v track geometry itself . Maybe, with 3d printed 12v wheels and a PF-based motor it could work on PF flexible track - but it would then loose 90% of its "vintage" appeal. I'd classify it as "Virtual Shelf Queen" ! Ciao! Davide
  8. Reker1000000

    Lego 12v train layout #6

    Of course, I've made another 12v layout... This one includes a good-sized switchyard with 2 signals and a decoupler, which I quite enjoyed using. The 12v remotely operated accessories really are something else for shunting! I also have 7810 upgraded with a black motor functioning as another freight engine. Let me know if there's anything you'd like to see in future videos, I am always happy to hear ideas for new content. In the meantime, I have a lot of videos racked up which I'll be releasing routinely for a bit (every 3 days, US Eastern time 9:00 AM). Next will be extra clips of this layout, releasing tomorrow! I will link it here as well, when it releases. Enjoy the video!
  9. Hello all, I'm starting a series on YouTube about how to enter the wonderful electric world of 12v Lego trains, and I thought I'd share it here for those of you who may have heard of this line but never learned much. In my opinion, this is the Golden Age of Lego trains and something that won't return in the foreseeable future- the remotely operated points, signals, plus other accessories and the train designs are uniquely fantastic. It's pretty inaccessable to those of us in the United States, and I know I would have really appreciated a guide when I started my journey nearly 2 years ago- so I'm trying to provide a comprehensive starter guide if you are just getting into 12v trains. This is one of the only videos out there to serve this purpose. The first part is already published and is about the different core components of a layout- and, it includes a section regarding voltage converters (aka "step up and down transformers") for those of us in the US, because we need to create European outlets to plug the 12v transformer into. I'm editing the second part right now, which will be an overview of the 9 train sets and which to purchase if you have no prior experience/knowledge, and I will reply to this post with the second part when it's published. I hope you all enjoy, and learn something new if you're just starting 12v! -Reker1000000
  10. Reker1000000

    7810 weights

    Has anyone figured out how to integrate the 2x6x2 black weight bricks into 7810 (with 12v motor installed)- and this is the important part- without altering the original stickered assemblies and without removing the stickers? I ordered the set but don't have it yet, and am planning to put 7865 into it once it arrives.
  11. Hi guys, im looking to build some 12v models in alternative colours. E.g. 7745 in all black or 7755. Looking at Bricklinking cheaper parts. Wondered if anyone had some pictures they may have of stuff they had done for some inspiration? Thanks in advance and I look forward to hopefully seeing some of your creations. ?
  12. Reker1000000

    MISB 7750

    Well, it finally happened... I never saw one for sale until now, but on BrickLink there is a seller with a MISB 7750 listed for 9,000 euros (about $9,500). Just posting this here because I thought it might interest some of the other 12v fans out there! This is a very very rare occurrance. Edit: Also realized there's a sealed 7755 (different seller) which went up for sale since yesterday as well...
  13. Reker1000000

    Lego 12v layout 5

    Hello everyone, My previous layout video got a lot of positive feedback here so I thought I'd post the newest one! Here it is. This is my largest layout yet, including 5 electric points, 3 signals, 1 decoupler, and 1 level crossing in addition to other supplemental sets and 3 train sets (7730, 7745, 7750). I'm pretty happy with how it turned out, and it even includes a night section that has the 7745 with lights in it. I hope you enjoy!
  14. Hi, I have a question for maintaining 12v tracks and motors, The motor speed at the first run was so fast that passenger coaches were derailed at the corner but after 10~12 mins running, it has become slower and stops in the middle of the track. So I though I may need some lubrication work and cleaning rails properly. Is spraying grease like Super lube works for lubricating 12v motors? or would affect solder part or plastic? or is there any tips for lubricating 12v motors? Also, cleaning the conductor rail, would whiskey or alcohol spirit with cloth work? as black spot does not go away. Thank you.
  15. Reker1000000

    12v layout

    Hello EB, I'd just like to share with you a new video I uploaded to YouTube yesterday, complete with 80s synthwave music, that is about a 12v train layout I made and features my 7750 I got recently along with a 7730 and 7745. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out! -Reker1000000
  16. Hi all and Happy New Year!!! Since I'm waiting for H0 parts to arrive to continue my experiments, I am browsing the Internet a lot to get some inspiration. Searching for some American locomotives I found (again) the Bipolar, a locomotive which I like a lot...but I always end forgetting its name. I recall the GG1 in my mind...but the name Bipolar name simple does not fit into my 64kb of memory (38911 bytes free)! So, I thought it could be nice to try this big lady in 12v, just for fun. In this case, I built the E-2, the lattest rebuild of one of the Bipolar family, made in 1953. It's a massive thing, and the two motors will surely be helpful to move the locomotive and the Hiawatha train (I did not design the wagons, but for sure they would be...heavy!!!). As the original E2, the locomotive has asymmetric details on the two "big noses". The colors are WRONG - yellow should be orange, black should be dark gray, so I kept a 7740 paint scheme, well suited to the color range available in the 80s. As any high-end locomotive it has some expensive parts (all the windows). One note - the 2x2 windows can be also in old gray (from 7740), a bit cheaper option. The locomotive has 6 point of articulation, I think it could manage the R40 curves - my real life DB BR78 is less articulated, just to made an example. As you can see, the whole body seems a bit taller than normal 12v trains, but all in all, the real bigger details are the two pantographs. I don't think I'll ever build it in real bricks - for the only reason that I'm not so convinced to see it going around R40 curves. Maybe it could be a good shelf queen I hope you like this one! Ciao! Davide
  17. Book Review (Review by Thorsten Benter) Almost a year has passed since initial publication of this book. There are a number of on-line reviews available – this one on EB seems to come in a bit late. Well, I don’t think so, in contrast. This book is a comprehensive how-to-build-a-train resource rather than a compilation of what is out there. And this sets the book aside from so many others. It will be up-to-date as long as The LEGO Company produces bricks and sets. Plus, with the arrival of the Powered Up system, more space becomes available inside the train body as compared to comparable PF functionality: The dedicated receiver becomes obsolete and no line of sight is required for communication creating some additional space – space for sophisticated building techniques! This books tells you everything you need to know about the historical LEGO train theme development at TLG, about scales and widths, about pivot points, microstriping, SNOTing and offsetting, and so much more with relevance to train building! (Note: A PDF copy of this review with higher resolution pictures will be shortly available at Holger’s website) Summary: A must-have for every LEGO train fan, for people entertaining the idea of getting into LEGO trains, and for people who still don’t know that they will become train fans after reading the book Superb photography of LEGO models, outstanding renders of CAD models In-depth analysis and assessment of the different LEGO train eras Demonstration and teaching of advanced building and design skills My personal LEGO book score: 10/10 About the book: Author: Holger Matthes Published: Oct. 2017 by No Starch Press Inc., San Francisco, CA, USA. Hardcover, 135 pages + 90(+) pages reserved for 4 full building instructions (ICE train, gondola car, Swiss Crocodile, and a vintage passenger coach), 150+ most relevant and educational figures (excluding the beautiful chapter openers or page breakers as well as the set building instructions), 20+ tables including bulleted lists. ISBN: 1-59327-819-5 Price: € 14 (Kindle edition, Amazon); € 23 (Print edition, Amazon) both as of 9-2018. $ 19 (ebook only), $ 25 (ebook and print edition, nostarch.com) both as of 9-2018. The present English edition published by No Starch Press is based on the initial German edition “LEGO Eisenbahn – Konzepte und Techniken für realistische Modelle”, which was originally published by dpunkt Verlag Heidelberg, ISBN: 978-3-86490-355-7. The initial German edition of the book based on Holger’s manuscript composed in 2015/16 caught the attention of foreign publishers: It began with the present English edition in 2017. It then took a bit longer until the Chinese publisher “Posts & Telecom Press” (who has already published a bunch of LEGO books written by fans) very recently released the Chinese version: http://www.ptpress.com.cn/shopping/buy?bookId=0ed0cd68-ca59-41fc-9bf9-193b06089996 (ISBN: 978-7-115-48419-2): After publication in 2017, No Starch Press’ English version became the reference for further translations. In summer 2018, the Spanish (“LEGO TRENES”; LEGO TRENES https://www.amazon.es/TRENES-Libros-Singulares-Holger-Matthes/dp/8441540179) and the Italian (“TRENI LEGO”; https://www.amazon.it/Treni-Lego-colori-Holger-Matthes/dp/8868956411) editions became available. And the Russian version is on its way (sorry, Holger couldn’t tell me any further information about its availability): (Note that the Russian cover on the right is purely made up by me – Google translator says the Cyrillic headline reads “in preparation” – but who knows …) About the author Holger Matthes is a hobbyist who has been building with LEGO since 2000. He was involved in the creation of various official LEGO projects such as the Hobby Train set #10183 and frequently presents his models and gives workshops at LEGO exhibitions worldwide [copied from Amazon website]. Table of content of the book (short version) Part 1: Overview and history Introduction A history of LEGO trains Part 2: Building your own train models (My own creations – MOCs) Basic principles Designing your own models Case studies in design Part 3: Building instructions A note on the included building instructions Appended to the body of the book, you’ll find four high quality and carefully composed instructions in addition to two free online instructions: Inter-City Express (ICE; driving and trailer cars, PF motorization, windshield designs) Gondola car Swiss electric Be 6/6 “Crocodile” Vintage passenger car Steam Engine BR 10 (as bonus online available at http://holgermatthes.de/bricks/en/br10.php) Steam Engine BR 80 (as bonus online available at http://holgermatthes.de/bricks/en/br80.php) There is further information available online. Holger directs you to https://www.nostarch.com/legotrains; but most of the very valuable stuff is actually hosted on his website. I highly recommend to visit his site: http://www.holgermatthes.de/bricks/en/index.php. You will find a wealth of background information, tips&tricks, how-to, and much more. The Book Let’s face it: Almost one year after initial publication, Holger still sets the stage with this book for LEGO train fans. It will be tough to get it much further; not on 135 pages (not counting the instructions pages), not with regard to the topics covered, not with regard to the width of the audience addressed. This book provides diverse perspectives on the art of building LEGO trains, coaches, and rolling stock – and is at the same time always determined, focused, and addresses most relevant “issues”. Train builders repeatedly face tough challenges: A train is not a building, which simply resides in all its beauty; rather trains are work horses – either hauling heavy cargo loads or endless passenger coaches, or switching rolling stock for hours and hours in a train show – or on your personal layout. At the same time, a LEGO train is “beautiful” and “esthetic” in the recognition of a train fan - as a building is for City fans. However, to be able to render real trains into LEGO models, regardless on the scale used, requires some serious knowledge about the myriads of LEGO bricks available, about advanced building techniques, and even electrical wiring skills. There simply isn’t much space in a LEGO train. Space as in “Space … is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space.” [Douglas Adams, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, 1979]. It is usually >extremely< packed inside a LEGO train model, particularly when electrifying it. Shaping the outer appearance with advanced building methods such as SNOT or angled and carefully secured pieces usually eats up all the space inside the hull. And lastly: Trains need to be sturdy. They not only haul heavy loads – they also have to run endless distances on track – in the best case on long stretches of straight track and smooth curves, here and there a bit bumpy – in the worst case negotiating endless and sharply bent curves and switch points in complex rail yards. This is exactly what Holger addresses in his book: How to achieve a sturdy, reliable, and at the same time esthetic and beautiful train. And we should just get it straight from the very beginning: Stickers are frequently recognized as the “icing on the cake”. And this is certainly true. BUT: Believe it or not, you can also legally “build” tiny lines, sloped coloring, narrowly split windows and much more when using advanced building techniques! And that sets aside this book from so many postings, building instructions, and other resources: Holger shows us how to accomplish “brick-built stickering” by using the endless variety of bricks and plates to build streamlined and nicely accentuated and smooth surfaces – rather than using the bulky, essentially non-LEGO-philosophy-but-by-TLG-released ICE #55768 nose with stickers attached all over it … There is so much more in the book. This is what I am trying to highlight in the following. Holger’s book is a must for us all: Beginners, advanced builders, as well as Train Tech gurus! And those who believe that they already are. One more thing to add: Photography and CAD image rendering. Or: A picture is worth a thousand words. Holger says: “The biggest thank you goes out to my old friend and master photographer Andy Bahler, without whose pictures this book would have been useless. His commitment, night after night, was above and beyond expectation …” The pictures are spectacular – you will notice right away. Organization of the book There are three parts in this book, although there is no such explicit assignment in the table of contents. Holger tells us on page 2 though: “The first part of the book gives an overview of LEGO trains over the different eras, covers some history, and answers questions about how to combine old LEGO trains from the attic with today’s kits. The second part of the book is about building your own LEGO train models, also known as My Own Creations (MOCs). Using my many years of experience building LEGO models, I’ll show you how to create proper train models, covering both the possibilities and the limitations. Finally, the book ends with step-by-step building instructions for several models.” Usually, the table of content is a good starting point for the organization analysis. However, this book is extremely focused and self-contained in each of the chapters of the three parts. This is very helpful (and also very different from other books), as the LEGO universe, including train worlds, is as diverse as it possibly gets. The number of pieces alone currently available through TLC’s official channels such as LEGO sets, PaB, and LEGO stores – or even more so – through the uncountable BrickLink stores around the globe is truly mind-boggling. Well, it is not only the sheer number, but more so the endless combinations possible – and what you achieve with such. Chances are: One gets rapidly lost and a little frustrated. Exactly this is NOT happening when “reading” this book. OK. We do it differently – as it seems appropriate for a “different” book: We walk through, as the very nice and focused organization of the book simply allows that. Part 1 “INTRODUCTION Decades ago, the toy designers at LEGO likely never imagined how durable their work would be. Today, parents can dust off their childhood LEGO trains and play together with their children who have just received their first brand-new LEGO train set. And fans of all ages can revive older sets and parts to create entirely new models.” In order to prevent such an almost natural “disorientation” or lost in parts and ways to connect them, in part one the book begins with a review of on-line resources. Information-, instruction-, and brick-availability-wise. Holger lists only the most relevant internet locations. Start here and progress further on your own. It makes your building life so much easier. As with every printed book, online references may become outdated at some point in time. Holger names thus only most reliable web portals, which will most probably exist for a long time. “A HISTORY OF LEGO TRAINS Let’s explore the evolution of the LEGO train systems from the earliest set to the present.” Next, there is a historical review of which type of train system was available at what time defining an era. This is rather significant. First of all, this approach results in a theme classification rather than a temporal evolution of sets: The blue, grey, 9V, RC, and PF era. As the pieces from different areas are naturally largely interchangeable (otherwise it would not be LEGO!), you may mix them as you see fit. Nevertheless, each era has a certain typical appearance – if you want to capture that, you need to know what was going on during that particular era. As an example, people in love with the grey (12 V) era often capture the look and feel of that time – for example studs everywhere, not many curved bricks/diverse slopes (as they were not available at that time) – rather limited colors schemes, black, red, and yellow ... The reader learns what has been produced when and in what color scheme. There is also ample of information on the technical features of each era – it appears as if the author is deeply involved and well connected in the LEGO train community – all the way up to participate in the design of selected sets. Holger shares his knowledge with the reader – always in a concise and focused way. It is pointed out that Holger is not even attempting to compile a complete list of sets available within the different eras – in contrast, he is summarizing the unique era characteristics and features. He focuses on power sources, tracks (including switches and crossings), and other elements (wheels, baseplates, in addition to unique features, such as trucks, couplings and buffers). The grey (12 V) era sections stands out of course, as this was the most diverse and most creative train theme ever (IMHO, of course!). Here you will find an – again unique – compilation of “remote-controlled accessories”, “windows and doors”, “light bricks”, “weighted bricks” … What I personally find extremely useful – and it must have been a considerable effort – is i) a summary table, listing the most important features of each era, and ii) Holger’s evaluation of these features he headlines as “Seen from today’s perspective”. Even long-time and experienced train enthusiasts will surely find valuable information in this chapter! Part 2 “BASIC PRINCIPLES Let’s dive into the world of LEGO elements and explore the endless ways to connect them.” Now that one knows the individual features of the different eras, Holger opens part two of the book with a compilation of relevant LEGO pieces for train building. It is really surprising how many there are! I have built trains myself – seeing all the various elements nicely grouped and organized makes it so much easier to get an overview of individual pieces, select the ones you may want to try out – and compare them to other options. This section is extremely helpful when you start off with a new model – or when you want to overhaul an already existing train. In the following section, Holger introduces typical train specific building techniques (although you can use many of them throughout the entire LEGO universe!). And is not surprising that there are eleven dedicated pages on SNOTing and fractional-plate offsetting in all three dimensions. These are the most crucial techniques when shaping the look of a train. SNOT (studs not on top) is a powerful technique and has become very popular among train fans. Originally rather restricted to a few elements, which allowed to “reverse” the building order, the LEGO Company has released a broad variety of SNOT elements over time. These are of course also shown in the preceding chapter on relevant LEGO train pieces. I’d say that this chapter is extremely important for beginners and of great interest to experts as there are various approaches shown side-by-side. At least for me this chapter is highly inspiring. The same is true for plate offsetting, i.e., building with only one half stud or even less displacement off the stud grid. First, the look of a train becomes much smoother even when not using curved bricks; secondly, this technique allows you to literally “build” colored surfaces with fine structures and even thin stripes (called microstriping). Without using stickers that is … Ever used minifig guns to create pantographs? Or ice skates as door handles? No? Well – Holger shows you! “DESIGNING YOUR OWN MODELS You might be wondering if you’re ready to begin making your own models. Which train should you build? Maybe you should start with the commuter train that takes you to work every day, or a freight train? And who hasn’t dreamed of a beautiful steam engine in LEGO?” Now we are getting down to business. The following two chapters of part 2 are not about “building a train” – they are about “how to do it right”. We are talking about scaling and modeling rather than “pushing along”. Before Holger goes into details though, he points out the importance of thoroughly choosing a scale. This is an extremely important decision to be made when attempting to model a real-world train. How much detailing is required? How much abstraction is allowed? Citing Holger again (page 73): “Building a recognizable model isn’t about scaling every part exactly, although proportion matters. Intentionally omitting some details or exaggerating others is usually necessary. Scale modeling with LEGO is a bit like drawing a caricature: the end result may not be an exact likeness, but it is recognizable and undeniable.” We learn about model scales (1, L, O, HO …), alternative approaches (scaling by wheel size) as well as choosing a model width (6-, 7-, 8-stud-wide). Don’t mix these up – almost any scale may be used for any track width! There are so many diverse examples here on EB. Holger narrows the scope of widths covered in his book to 6 - 8 stud wide (see cover page of the book), as these are the widths most builders choose – in addition to the official 6-wide LEGO models. He discusses the advantages and downsides of each of these widths in detail. A very important aspect when designing and building a LEGO train – regardless of the model scale – is the official LEGO track geometry. Maximum distances of fixed axles, alleviation of this rather restricted distance using articulated single trucks (a theme repeatedly discussed here on EB), sliding middle axles in three axle trucks – you will find all the answers in this book. When it comes to attaching cars to each other – even more design aspects have to be considered, which are all discussed: Pivot points vs car distance, additional pivot points to reduce car distance, the effect of pivot points on design issues, to name a few. And then: Steam engine design: 7 full pages! As far as I am concerned, steam engines are the most challenging models to render in LEGO. To say it with Anthony Sava’s words: “I'd buy a set with a steam engine in it, but I have little interest in buying a box on wheels.” (EB Forum, April 2nd 2018). Holger shows us all the challenges and caveats. The remaining sections in this chapter are: Power and Control, discussing mostly the implementation of PF elements, Modeling Details, and Track Design and Layout. Again, extremely valuable information and guides are given. One comment on third party suppliers: At the time of writing this book, both SBrick controllers (as a replacement for PF receivers, featuring wireless Bluetooth connectivity) as well as ME Models (as a supplier of wider radii curves) were actively present on the market. As of now (i.e., August 2018) though, the new LEGO Powered Up system introduced lately makes SBricks for trains almost obsolete – and Me Models have gone out of business some time ago. There are a good number of very good 3rd party alternatives for additional track pieces – large curve radii, complex switch point geometries to name only a few. They come as superb injection molded pieces which are almost indistinguishable from original LEGO track, as well as 3D printed varieties. I believe that a book of the format Holger has chosen simply does have to deal in-depth with such developments as they are much more volatile than almost any LEGO product. Taking aside the LEGO RC interim solution of course. But again, Holger gives a full account of why RC happened at all and why its lifetime was even shorter than that of many 3rd party small businesses. I really enjoyed this section very much. Regarding very recent developments by TLG naturally not covered in the book (the original German manuscript was written in 2015/16): The introduction of the Powered Up system leaves much more space within a train engine so that all the building tips and tricks provided in Holger’s book become even more intriguing! It appears as we can even more freely combine advanced power/remote control options with the present advanced building instructions. Which makes this book even more valuable! “CASE STUDIES IN DESIGN Armed with the tools and knowledge about LEGO modeling covered in the previous chapters, we’ll now take a closer look at the actual design process using some of my own builds as a guide.” This chapter needs to be explored – interpreted – by yourself. This is – as far as I am concerned – the heart of the book. Here you will learn how to begin designing a model. I find this part the most difficult: How to begin – looking at the all the bricks, plates, slopes, clips, there are so many of them … so we should take this to our heart: “Designing a model is a creative and personal process: there’s no right or wrong way to build a successful model. The guidelines in this section are meant to get you started. You’ll certainly develop your own strategies along the way.” Along with: Decide on a scale and choose the width: 6-, 7-, or 8-wide? Decide how the train will be powered and what type of track it’ll run on. Choose a target audience: should it be a realistic, recognizable model, or are play functions more important? You will notice: This is about >you<! Nevertheless, you will also learn a lot in this chapter. Holger has chosen a regional express train (Bombardier double deck train), a powerful electric locomotive (Siemens Vectron engine), and a (well, Holger is German after all …) steam engine (BR 10) as case studies. This is a very clever selection – as the techniques he shows apply to almost every engine I am aware of – including American diesels as well as American steamers … or all the various European trains, Emanuele (EB member LT12V) is currently presenting here on EB … And finally … Part 3 “BUILDING INSTRUCTIONS! Get inspired with these step-by-step instructions for building an Inter-City Express, a simple gondola, a Swiss Electric Locomotive Be 6/8 “Crocodile,” a vintage passenger car, and a steam engine.” From page 136 to 227 you will find first class, high(est)-quality building instructions for the above referenced models. There is nothing more to add. As said: This book is a must … Play Well! @Jim Thank you very much Jim for giving me the opportunity of writing this review for EB - it was a great pleasure. And for sending me this wonderful book! @HoMa Thank you Holger for writing this book. And for all the additional information you gave me when writing this review and for your comments! Thanks for reading, Thorsten
  18. Hi all, always starting from this inspiring discussion... ... @Reker1000000 introduced me to a very particular locomotive: "DB V3201 seems like it would be an interesting starting point for a locomotive to model in 12v style with the red motor..." The locomotive we're speaking about is the DRG V3201, one of the first experiments to upgrade from steam to Diesel engines. In this case, Diesel motors were available , but problem was related to transmitting their power to the wheels. Gears were too weak, Hydraulic transimission was still in development...so the idea was to replace steam with compressed air, therefore maintaining the "old" transmission system (including distribution) used by steamers. In short, it worked this way: DIESEL ENGINE --> COMPRESSOR --> RESERVOIR -->CYLINDERS --> COUPLING RODS --> WHEELS More or less what is seen in some Pneumatic locomotives made in Lego (great stuff!) with electric motors. Well, seems great, but there were many problems related to the heating of compressed air, its cooling (!) and cylinders lubrication - all for maintaining its efficiency. Here's an interesting link! http://www.douglas-self.com/MUSEUM/LOCOLOCO/diesair/diesair.htm All in all - a very complex hybrid system, with many gaps to be solved with engineering "patches". But it's a cool locomotive and making it in 12v style could really be a challenging task. First of all, it's the most asymmetric thing I've ever seen , second - it's a very tormented design - which cannot be captured fully in 12v style, due to lack of parts at the time. It's however a very peculiar locomotive (depicted also in a postal stamp!!!) and it's worth to be tried. Here it is, just out of the shed , helped by a small V60. In reality, this event could not happen, since the V3201 was scrapped many years before the launch of the little shunter, but since we can do whatever we like with our fantasy, I was more optimistic and imagined a restored V3201 ready for some hystorical train! The V3201 is based on the chassis of a BR78, which - luckily - is one of the 12v locomotives I've already tried to create. Therefore, chassis was already prepared and only needed to be adapted to the longer body. This big beast has a quite boxy body, which seems to be made soldering together some parts of cabins, cut from steam locomotives. The central part of the body is sticking a bit out from the overall shape, and this is due to the big submarine diesel and air reservoirs. The main charachteristics are the two big gray radiators, the small windows on the corridor side, and those big stairs. Stairs were a nice thing to replicate, even if these are not the same as in the prototype. I did not use the big train doors, since these did not allow me to recreate the stairs and handrails. In the real thing, the stairs go over the cylinders, so using the 12v standard ones was quite a mess. I replicated them with normal parts. and this was not a problem. I had however to "cut" the stairs in half, the upper one being fixed to the body, while the lower one being part of the bogie (and turning accordingly). With the 12v motor, this design needed to be somehow adapted. On a real 12v motor, the central hole can accept an half Technic pin. Using a normal Techic brick some plates and tiles solved the problem. The ladder is kept in place by the pin and "slides" together with the motor. Between the radiator and the cabin there's a small, virtually transparent door since it's made of a panel full of small holes. The body in reality should be 4-wide in that point. I tried fences, door fences, everything did not fit and SNOTting was quite impossible (for me at least), given the limited parts available. Even Marklin's model is solid in that point, so I concentrated more on having at least a grille pattern. Using the ladder part was not so nice, it was just confusing. I therefore tried the just seen @zephyr1934 technique (thanks to you and Katy!), to have some visible horizontal lines. I used 3794b parts (jumper) . It works also with normal plates, but this is way better. Doors features a possible, even if not used at the time, SNOT for the door hadle, using headlamps bricks. Here's a shot from above, showing the 7-wide central part of the locomotive. As you can see I played a lot with the jumpers parts. And here's the "blind side" of the locomotive there's not so much to say ,being pretty smooth! Apart big red wheels and red motor, 2x1x2 and 1x1x2 black windows are there, just to remember there's some 7730s and 7750s blood inside the veins of this "thing". Here is visible the big radiator... ...and here is visible the smaller one. Looking better at the central headlight you can see some "white stuff" between the bricks - it's the classic 12v light brick with the addition of a small diode. This old trick allows the headlight to be lighten up according to locomotive's direction. Radiator is made by 1x1 plates, trying to replicate the "pattern" of the real thing. I put here red lights in 7777 style, even if these should be white, according to prototype. A brief mention to the Shed - it's an old MOD - I do not sincerely remember if I already presented it here in Eurobricks. It's a 7777 build, converted to a more shed-looking thing. Since I like to replicate dioramas in 12v style, this could be a nice addition to the overall scene. I hope you like it! Thanks again to @Reker1000000 for his inspirational idea! Ciao, Davide
  19. Hi all, during a pleasant discussion in this thread... ...a very interesting question was raised by @SDLgo9 member: The 7777 idea book pages mentioned here are those three pages showing the blue matter (!) unloading station and the famous auto-unloading wagons. These wagons are pulled by an obscure locomotive, which is never fully depicted. In fact - the front view is missing, and there's no clear view of the boiler. I've NEVER taken care of it, nor analyzed it too much. It really seems a 7730-based locomotive, but simplified in some details. There's a strange combination of "simple look" and now overpriced rare parts. So maybe it's simple - but it is a wanted effect? Analyzing the whole scenery depicted in the book - it's not a place for a fancy locomotive. There's work to do - wagons are fully loaded and heavy, so that unloading station surely needs a workhorse. And these workhorse is powerful, maybe not so good looking, but simple and solid, ready for its everyday duty. Here's a rear view, similar to the one in the Idea Book: It's a long locomotive and it's not using the classic train base (like 7810). It's pretty boxy and looks heavy. I had to take the scans from Brickfactory and to modify the photos to see a bit better. But which parts were used of the body is pretty unknown to me. So, we have the 2x2x1 black windows on the rear part - being a 7730 derivate - there are also doors, and at this point, the 1x2x1 small black windows. But it seems (to me) that these are not facing towards the front, and instead are used as small side windows. Side reservoirs are big, so fitting the two weight bricks was not a problem. The smoke stack is visible and there's not so much to say - but the boiler...is not completely visible. I added a square steam dome just for completeness. There's an headlight on top of boiler, and it seems there are also two headlights on the "nose". They are not fully visible, for this reason I think these are not placed on the corners of the chassis. Let's try: Simple and straight - the boiler is not round, but goes down to the chassis, same "steering wheel" as in the 7730. Headlights are a bit more inwards. All in all it's a simplified 7730 nose. Then, a more "Narrow Gauge" look - always with 7730 parts: There could be more styles, just removing the front steering wheel part and playing with slope parts. Suggestions are welcome!!! Davide
  20. In 1980 the golden (grey) age of LEGO trains started. The Grey Era was lounged with a firework of great sets like #7740 and #7750 and the train station #7822 and the entire rail system with remote controlled switches, signals and later level crossing and decoupling unit. After collecting the missing sets over the last years, I thought of building some MOCs in the classic grey era style, maybe using some newer colours and elements. But to keep the characteristics of the original sets. @Paperinik77pk already came up with a lot of extraordinary stuff for the grey and blue era. So I took the social isolation time this weekend, lowered the blinds and got the photo equipment ready for some shots. Mallet Steam Engine (inspired by #7750 and the Baureihe 99 … I just wanted to build a "large" 12V style steam engine without copying the great work of @Paperinik77pk or the large steam engine in #7777) It opens like #7750 Rear view: Full side view: With historic cars: I build 3 of these cars, inspired by Hofzug Kaiser Wilhelms II. The cars are longer then the classic 6x28 train base plate. I added a 2x6 plate at each end. This requires a special way to lengthen the couplers and buffers. The bogie plate can not be moved outer due the limitations of the train base plate. And see the simple solution to fix the minifigure shield which I use as logo of the train: V100 diesel engine (based on #7755 with shorter base and 5-wide body) V100 diesel engine and so called "Silberlinge", very typical local train in Germany in the 1970s/1980s: Trains like this were able to operate in both directions due to a steering post in the end car: Side view of the "Silberlinge": Classic 12V style interior in both cars: Small electric engine in medium/blue and hopper car #4536 in brown, ready for the 12 volt system: Small electric engine in green/red hopper cars #4536 in brown, ready for the 12 volt system: Green electric locomotive with a red 12 volt motor inspired by Baureihe E 44: Green electric locomotive inspired by Baureihe E44: Enjoy and stay healthy these days! Best regards, Holger
  21. Hi All, It's been awhile since my last post, so I thought it was time I made another. I have been in receipt of a BB12VB-RED recently! Ahem, probably more like a year or so ago. As you can see from the photos, one of the pickups is very damaged… Another Eurobrick member, Alainneke, had already kindly made some replacements out of brass… I had sent him the diagrams of the pickups in AutoCAD, and extremely excellent reproductions were sent as a test in return. At the time I’d only opened my 'teenaged' black motor, as seen in photos, and the new brass pickup studs were supposed to be destined for it… The RED 12V motor is very, very rare, I have held back on using the replacement pickups until now… I am glad I have waited though, my apologies Alainneke! After reading VGO’s suggestion in post http://www.eurobrick...pic=50345&st=25, post #28, I tried the idea out on a black motor and it moved during the operation and I snapped a tab off the end, see pic. So I decided to build a jig out of Lego to hold the motor. The top part of my jig is real Lego, while the bottom is entirely made of Fako(Fake Lego) due to my needing to augment some of the pieces to fit the underside of the motor and wheels. I used MEK(Methyl-Ethyl-Ketone) to ‘weld’ the pieces together, along with some small strips of a smooth(no embossed numbers) credit type card, see pics. Okay, My advice is that you try and run a razor blade around the circumference of the bottom of the motor, hopefully using a ‘jig’ like shown. I do mean “Razor blade” as a “Stanley” knife blade will do the damage that I have shown in my earlier openings, try a ‘BIC single blade’… Making and using a ‘BIC’ single razor blade… I used the razor whilst the motor was in the top part of the jig. Once in the jig, use a 2.5mm rod/nail and hammer in both power plug holes, to gently persuade the bottom to come loose on either side. Seat partially opened motor on the ‘bottom’ part of the jig, and use the remainder of the credit/shopping card to gently hammer down on the wheel axle to pry the last of the plastic welds apart. The motor is now broken open… Here are some pics of the open casing with the old and new pickups, I will update the post after I have cleaned up the motor parts. If for whatever reason you need to take a wheel off, I.e. for cleaning excessive hair/crud in sleeve bearing, then you start by removing the cir-clip next to the sleeve bearing. Move bearing nearer to gear cog, then gently pries the cylindrical spring clip out of the wheel in the same area as the hole in the wheel. When you're cleaning the parts inside, be careful with the metal part 'A'. There are two small hardened steel discs that sit either end of the spindle, only the dirty grease is holding them in.... Now it's time for reassembly and re-greasing...
  22. 12 Volt Roundhouse full front view Back in April I presented some will received train MOCs in 12 Volt grey era style. Recently the Brick Train Awards caught my attention and this contest was a good reason to pick up on my 12 Volt Roundhouse project which started 2016/2017 but was never finished. So time was limited, the deadline came closer. But I made it. Now it's time to share the 12 Volt Roundhouse with you folks. I named the Roundhouse "Bamberg", the city I live in. And close to my place there is the ruin of the real Roundhouse. Nothing more to see there and the place is prohibited to visit. So my Roundhouse is just a phantasy model, like the 12 Volt grey era trains sets are also "phantasy", but pretty close to Deutsche Bundesbahn locomotives and waggons. The Roundhouse has 7 segments, one for each official steam engine of the Grey Era from 1980 - 1986 which are: 7710, 7715, 7722, 7727, 7730, 7750 and 7810. The side and back walls are build entirely with 1x2 and 1x1 plates in red and dark-red to model the characteristics of red brick walls. The segments are modular in a 3-1-3 configuration for easy transportation. The turntable is operated remote controlled using a Electric, Train 12V Remote Control 8 x 10 with 2 Circled Arrows Pattern which fits nicely with the more standard remote controls for signals and switches. An old 12 Volt Technic motor is integrated in the bottom of the turntable. The 2 cables are used to power the motor and the electric middle rail on the turntable. The cables are not placed well, the should go in the centre of the rotation point. Hmm, I need to think of a purist solution for this issue. If you build a turntable, the complete track level has to be elevated. So the complete layout (except the roundhouse and the turntable) is elevated by 2-3 layers of brick. This is really eating my basics and plates in old dark grey, dark tan and black. But it was worth it. Using an elevated brick build ground it was easy to hide all the cables for the good old 12 light posts and the power supply for the tracks in the Roundhouse. Finally some typical 1980's style vehicles and other accessory bring back the typical charm from this time. Trucks were only 4 studs wide ... long time ago. Enjoy the video and the pictures :-) Stay safe and healtyh and keep 12 Volt alive! Holger #7730 and #7727meet just outside the Roundhouse The blue workers are busy unloading the new #7750 train wheel from a #7720 platform waggon. A MOC diesel V36 engine brought in the valuable delivery. No social distancing required for LEGO blue work-men The backyard has an additional access by rail and by road. Can you spot the statue of the founder of the Roundhouse? Back door view through the Roundhouse. Can you identify the steamer on the turntable? My green Mallet steam engine on the turntable. #7750 (derailed, opps) is getting fresh coals. This graphic shows the wiring diagram. The 12 Volt trafo powers the turntable and the selected track. The V36 MOC engine has some trouble. The hood was lifted off so the blue mechanic man can fix this issue. It's getting late, but the blue workers are still busy. Not very secure to keep the lights on while weltering the mast? Top view of the Roundhouse at night. All pictures also in my Flickr album https://www.flickr.com/photos/holgermatthes/albums/72157715067356186
  23. Paperinik77pk

    [MOC] DB BR98.3 "Glaskasten" - 12v

    Hi all, this time I propose a real build, it's not completely new - many of you surely has seen it in some of my digital renderings, but was never built. I finished it yesterday, when the red motor finally was repaired and the missing rare 2x2 black window arrived. To create this one, my third copy of 7810 was used as donor for the baseplate and black windows. So I decided to keep the 7810 number when I chose the stickers (the renderings have 7730 decals). Just to explain, all my MOC locomotives keep numbering of original Lego sets from which are derived in terms of parts. To celebrate its arrival, I used my small 12v test track. As you can see is a very simple build, standardized in 12v style adding the black side doors (absolutely not present in the prototype), and 5 2x2 black windows. The red motor was a must- I tried to use the black one - but it wasn't the same thing!!! This motor was not running anymore, so I bought a black one in bad aesthetic conditions as donor. I removed the electric motor from black shell, cleaned all inner parts, reinforced the red shell internally with some superglue (it had some cracks), changed axles (using the ones from black motor) and performed a test. Once the test was ok - I finally glued the two parts of the red shell. Even if the chassis is common to other locomotives, it seems very small. The inside is small aswell, and I only could fit a lever in 7750 style. You can see the 12v light brick and its cables. I bought some 12v light microbulbs - maybe I will succeed to light up also the rear headlight when going in reverse. Even if it has no weight bricks, it still has a decent pulling power and runs fine with small wagons. Now it needs its own set of cars. I hope you like it!!! Ciao, Davide
  24. Two great trains are dueling on 12v gray track: the British Railways HST 125 vs the Deutsche Bahn BR403 "Donald Duck"! Two big countries with high expertise on trains,two different power sources (Diesel vs Electric), same speed (above 200km/h or 125mph). Who will win this Lego contest? None of them, since they both are built on the same Lego platform and shape - I created first the "Donald Duck" in Lufthansa colors and then I modified it a little to recall the HST125. So same power cars ,and same wagons, only with a different paint scheme . I've always focused on standard trains, and this is my first experiment with fast ones. After all , during "gray Era" we've seen a lot of steamers, diesels, electric trains...but only one example of fast train. So here's a shot of the DB403, with an applied sticker on front "window" to simulate double windscreens... ...and one of the "Screaming Valenta" - here the sticker is a bit different, but you can easily tell it is only a bigger one! Both are using parts available in the last years of "Gray Era" (so they could have been made starting from 1987). The HST could be a bit older than the 403 - since it's using the old style blue window in the cabin. I could also recreate a yellow sticker to cover the outer part of the trans-clear headlight, but I preferred to keep it as it is (just imagine the sticker detaching when the glue is old...I HATE that sensation ) Both could have working headlights, the DB403 can use a 12v light brick on top headlight. For the HST125 the problem is how to diffuse light from light brick to transparent slopes. But both trains could also leverage on 9V lights, which were already available at the time. The 9v Battery box fits easily in both bodies. Finally the 7745 has some internal competition!!! Hope you like these two! Ciao! Davide
  25. So, I'm curious... Does anyone else have a stage of a build, whether it be a building, rolling stock or, as in my case, complete layout that they have a love-hate relationship with? We move house too often for our liking, so recently I've been building new layouts every 2 to 3 years, and being a 12v based layout it involves a lot of wiring (see below for a bit of it). Much as I love the end result, the wiring drives me nuts and I really slow down in my progress when I get to the point of needing to do it all. Anyone else got "pet peeves" so to speak that are part of the fun? 20200927_115339 by andyglascott, on Flickr