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Ah, Winter in New England

by Carl on January 26th, 2013

Well it’s been hovering around zero here for several days and the Atlantic Shoals is starting to revolt. In spite of running a very large humidifier continuously my benchwork is on the move. With zero or less relative humidity the liken has gone brittle, the wood has shrunk, the track has pulled apart, the room is cold, and getting a train to run around the layout has become quite a challenge.


I have found over the past fifty five (did I say fifty five) years that when fixing  these issues  tread cautiously, keeping in mind that Summer will return, and not soon enough, because Summer has issues also, the wood will “grow” back, the track will buckle, and the liken will expand and intrude on the right of way.


A more serious issue in the winter is static electricity. I have a grounding pad next to my DCC boosters and I always ground myself, sometimes with a blue flash, before turning them on. Remember static electricity is composed of very high voltage and those little chips that hold the ones and zeros don’t like high voltage.


So when your layout gets cantankerous remember you are not alone and persevere. That turnout that worked perfectly for so long that now is causing derailments is not out to get you it’s just looking for some seasonal attention.


I have a “OP” session tonight and hopefully my operators will appreciate what we owners have to do to keep things running. I think most do.






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