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Japanese Modelling & Japan Rail Enthusiasts Forum


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About nah00

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    Koki Fanatic

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    Pittsburgh, PA

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  1. Fiberglass pencil?

    I was re-watching the episode of James May's The Reassembler where he puts his old train set back together and he used a fiberglass pencil to clean up the contacts and copper bits on the motor. Has anyone used one of these and do they really make a difference?
  2. What did you order or the post deliver?

    Are those the Ricoh ones below the Super Green Shuttle Liner ones? I thought of picking those up since I think they have different numbers from the set before. Wish I had waited on the rerelease of the Super Green Shuttle Liner containers, most of mine are Tomix and a slightly different size. Speaking of size, how does the Kato taki compare to the Tomix one?
  3. Is it truly drop-in on the DD51? The Digitrax website seems to indicateso but I've never had to take apart one of my Kato DD51s.
  4. So for me I have no desire to run my Japanese stock with DCC. I may buy a few EM13s and set them to a generic addy so I can run some of my Japanese stock at shows but my main focus would be on my North American stock. I planned from the beginning to start small to learn hands-on and not get overwhelmed and still be able to run trains (my layout idea is the basic prefab door with a double loop on top, one side serving a mine and the other a small diesel service facility). The $450 price tag for the Digitrax Evolution set is a bit high but I like the idea of being able to 'follow' my train (even if it is only a few feet) plus I'll be able to explore more of the programming options on my own at my own pace. Some of my Japanese stock is so old I'd really be worried about damaging it and I don't even want to think what gymnastics I'd like to go through for something like the Wide View Hida or Narita Express with pre-installed light sets.
  5. Anyone Assembled Greenmax EMU kits?

    I have one still in the box I've never got around to putting together or painting and likely never will. Only Greenmax cars I put together were 4 Mani-44s for my Euroliner, they weren't too bad but the underfloor detail is a bit tricky to get set in the right place. Also the kits were ANCIENT so the dry transfers were a real joy to put on. Once assembled though they behave well, no derailments or major problems.
  6. What did you do on your layout today?

    Same here, some have been filled in with putty, other have been unceremoniously covered up with styrene and ground cover.
  7. nice SD40-3 in HO

    Likely from the 2010 refurb. Figure they had 30 years on them then (my guess is CSX took the latest production -2s they had and rebuilt them) so lasting until 2040 isn't really out of the question, EPA and emission standards getting more strict hurt them but that's less of an issue now (for better or worse). I wonder if they've tried to increase their revenue by offering rebuilds to smaller regional railroads that use the -2.
  8. Got my first Broadway Limited locomotive, the NS Conrail Heritage unit ES44AC. Runs great, the sound is a nice gimmick and louder than I though it would be. Also even though it's an anachronism I got a caboose for it too, nothing like having a locomotive that meets the strictest emission standards hauling a rake of hoppers full of coal.
  9. So this weekend I got the chance to run some of my North American rolling stock on my club's layout and I added DCC boards to them (both were contemporary Atlas diesels, only hard part was getting the contacts into the holes on the Digitrax boards). After running them pretty much all day (and keeping track of them, five trains on a loop requires cooperation) I was amazed by how smooth and frankly how easy DCC operation was. Now I know that converting Tomix to DCC can be a bit like removing an ingrown toenail with a rusty pair of pliers and for the most part the 'operation' bit of my Japanese layout doesn't require DCC but I've been thinking of building a smaller North American layout and DCC just seems the logical choice. There is a larger upfront investment but it seems that expansion is much easier, wiring becomes very simple, you have a lot of options as to what you can program your locos to do and the interface while somewhat dated is reliable. However this upfront investment seems to outweigh the long term costs of DC, namely that expansion means a new power pack, new wiring and more work. Am I just being overly enthusiastic because I tried something new and novel or is it really a better system in the long run? Digitrax's logo of 'run your trains, not your tracks' is catchy but there is truth to it - aside from the occasional random derailment (and occasional rear-ending a train because I was talking to a guest and not minding the throttle) I had no real issues with the system and programming it wasn't difficult. Also I ran my Kato EF-210 on it and had directional lighting on DCC track...is this model designed for this?
  10. Tomix - New Releases

    I wasn't particularly pleased with that either especially since given the extra detail on these I would feel much better if they were in soft foam instead of something that has no give.
  11. What did you order or the post deliver?

    I've found that a lot of Tomix non--runners just need a bit of cleanin since they seem to come over-lubricated from the factory.
  12. Greenmax seems to be really good in the 'oh cool I want that...wait nevermind' department.
  13. What did you order or the post deliver?

    Found this hiding at my local hobby shop. No box but strangely the rerailer was still with it, not a huge deal since I have an empty box from the H5. $50 later and it has a new home. I'll eventually get the 3 car add-on but seeing as I just got the Hokkaido Shinkansen I'm not in a rush. Funny thing is is that I used to HATE the E5 but it really grew on me over time.
  14. What did you do on your layout today?

    I was going to get the Tomix Koki 50000 set but backed off on it. I have a few Kato 50000s and with their gradual phasing out over the past few years adding that many more isn't something I necessarily want to do. On the other hand though if I went that route I could retire all of my off-color Kato koki-104s and their old 18D containers. I do really like the extra handrail detail on them though. I wish they'd do a rerelease of 2786, I don't have many 40 foot containers in my collection.
  15. What did you do on your layout today?

    Now if only Popondetta would get their act together and release a not completely messed up Annaka freight I would be running close to this exact train...