Keith's Analogue Tram System
A Portable Tram Exhibition Layout APT-E ??
Why trams? I acquired some second-hand LGB trams and trailers with a job lot I purchased some years ago.
They are quick to put out in the garden if I don't want to connect up all my railway rolling stock.
I then acquired a third one with trailer so I had a little fleet all with trailers.
I then purchased an LGB American New York street car which is a superb vehicle.
When LGB went bust I saw two more of these in Gaugemaster's cabinet, a New Orleans one and a Chicago one
so I thought I had better grab these as I might not see them again and indeed I haven't.
I then thought about an exhibition layout so I built up a portable tram layout about 12 feet long and
18" wide with a point at each end giving a spur at each end so I can run three trams automatically in sequence.
Having a tram layout is small enough to manage alone at it fits in my car together and
with the shops and cafés etc. which Peter Foxwell has constructed adds to the scenery and makes
it look more lifelike.
There are reed switches set in the track so when the tram gets near the end it changes the LGB point
behind it and a latching relay which controls the power supply to the track and an indicator LED so the
other tram at the end comes out after a short delay. There is a break in the tracks at each spur with
a diode connected across it in the usual manner for a basic shuttle.
The basic shuttle unit I use is from Mr Rails on the I.O.W. I have also added recently a sound unit under
the baseboard which gives a ›ding-ding“ as the tram moves off which he recorded for me on
a sound module from a MP3 file I emailed him.
The trams I run on my shuttle layout are OcCre Creativo kits.
I have built all 8 kits that they make and have fitted them with USA trains or Hartland motor blocks
depending on the wheelbase. I obtain these from G-Bits.
They have been fitted with LED lighting from a bridge rectifier, a 5 volt 7805 voltage
regulator chip and 5v. supercapacitor which gets charged up after a little running so it keeps the inside
lights on whilst it is waiting at the end of the layout.
When building these kits fit the motor blocks in after the floor and side frames have been constructed as
some flooring will have to be cut away as it intrudes into the cabin slightly and adjust it to get the
correct height before proceeding any further.
The instructions say build the body first which is OK for a static showcase model but I want mine to run.
Once the kit is built you can't get inside it. This also applies to the LED lighting and passengers and driver.
I have just exhibited these trams at a TLRS (Tramway and Light Railway Society) open day, which I also belong to,
in Bognor where they were most excellent 3½“ gauge trams running around the beautiful garden.
Keith and Barbara will be having their next Open Day on Saturday 27th August 2016
Visiting Stock is welcomed - but will need to have the appropriate LGB/Massoth Magnets Fitted
[Ask Keith for details: Self-adhesive magnets make a quick fix on the day]
Links to other Articles:
Lin's Garden Banen from 2002...
Bruksbanen Shunting Puzzle
Keith's Analogue Tram System
Phil and Lin Spiegelhalter Back to Solent Home Page Back to Fillin Home Page and Calendar
(Copyright Phil and Lin Spiegelhalter, Keith Lambert Tram Photos= Keith Lambert)