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  1. O

    melted black wire track

    Is this a recent occurrence on normally functioning track? New track configuration? New loco? Normally you would need a reversing module on a figure 8 (I am ready to be corrected). It sounds like your loco is shorting the track.
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    B-E stripping shovel

    it's 160 feet high 1:1 so the model would be 22" tall!!
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    Do you add glazing to your windows?

    I was going to recommend microscope slide covers, but Espeefan beat me to it. For foreground structures, it's the best.
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    Dead Rail HO ?

    If you really wanted to go dead rail, how about real steam in HO!
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    Where is "the line"?

    To quote "Roadhouse": "Opinions vary". The operating sessions that I have been a part, few as they have been, were fun. Not "You can't do that!", "YOUR GOING TOO FAST, REDUCE SPEED 10%". I like operations. But my likes and dislikes don't rule the world. Neither does anyone else in this hobby.
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    Foreign power

    I'm contemplating not only running foreign motive power but multiple eras:1959 and relatively current. I haven't decided on the newer road name but it'll probably be UP.
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    Weather Channel Photo contest - Train pics

    I've seen clouds like that one over my house. I just didn't have the foresight to run over to the tracks and get a train in the picture.
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    Plywood + Foam, just plywood, or just foam?

    I like foam over plywood, BUT it does complicate turnout installation if you use under-railroad turnout control, like Tortoise machines. Other than that, it's your choice.
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    The Olympic Games ...

    The US was the only country that prohibited pro athletes from representing. They don't anymore.
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    Tortoise Machine Installation...

    Wouldn't ya know it. Model Railroader has a video this month of this very thing. Spooky.
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    Buss and feeder question

    I have read that solid wire is recommended for the buss on DCC systems, but I don't know why. I use 18g feeders and 14g buss wire. Every section of track should have a feeder, be it a full length of flextrack or a 9" piece. I also would recommend suitcase connectors over trying to solder to the...
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    Tortoise Machine Installation...

    Tortoise machines use a positive pressure on the points when they are thrown to keep the points tight to the rail(s), so it's "always on". If you're using turnouts with built in springs, you will want to take them out for use with the turtles.
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    Windows 10 debackle

    I use Macs now almost exclusively. I have a Win10 laptop but haven't used it in months.
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    Santa Fe 3751

    As a boy, I had the privilege of seeing big steam up close. My father kept pace with a steam engine in Louisiana for miles as I draped myself on the back window and just stared in awe. It looked alive! I also rode passenger between Ft Worth, Texas and Birmingham, AL through New Orleans. Riding...
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    Feeders... am I doing something wrong?

    I check resistance on the circuit. If the resistance is zero (or close to it for a VERY long lead) then the circuit is most likely good. The downside of this analysis is that a circuit under load may fail. If your solder joints are good (shiny solder, mechanically strong) and your connections...
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    What are your sources for news?

    All news is biased. Every bit of it. IF you want balanced news you have to (1) go to a news source that has no skin in the game regarding the story (BBC for a story about the American midwest) or, more accurately, pick sources with opposite bias and carefully, very carefully, pick out the real...
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    Running Bear's Coffee Shop LIV

    ERIC - I third or fourth the dental school idea. I recently finished my course of treatment and all is well. It takes more time but less money than a commercial dental practice. 90 degrees and HOT.
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    Passenger v Freight?

    Since I love riding the rails, I love passenger trains. But not to model. While there is some switching opportunity, a passenger train only makes one, or a few, stops in a town, dependent on size of town. A freight train may make many stops. Lots more switching opportunities.
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    N-scale: Building the 105 freeway.

    Remember the phrase "selective compression". But if you want to model it, it's your railroad. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.