from: Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom
  Open full page     Single message by Martin Wynne from topic:  Templot2 change log
6 Oct 2015 23:34
Templot2   version 212a    Build: # 10628    6th October 2015

Templot2   version 213a    Build: # 10690    1st November 2015

1. There is a useful new V-crossing type indicator on the trackpad, showing the current type of V-crossing for the control template and allowing quick changes to/from regular/curviform:


R = regular
C = curviform
G = generic
P = parallel

I = irregular-type half-diamond

Showing in green on white for turnouts and regular half-diamonds or grey for plain track templates.

For irregular half-diamonds, it also shows I prefix (usually with C, but not necessarily).

Clicking it toggles regular/curviform as the two types most often used.

Right-click on it to access the full V-crossing dialog.

2. Sleepers adjacent to rail joints on plain track can now be automatically widened, if your prototype requires it. This should avoid a lot of timber shoving: :)

If not wanted enter the same width as the previous line (10") or zero.

The result is quite noticeable, this is a pair of 12" joint sleepers with 10" plain sleepers:

n.b. Don't use this option on templates which have already had joint sleepers shoved to 12" width. Otherwise you will end up with joint sleepers 14" wide.

I have also implemented a modify group to match function for the timbering settings. This is not a new function, it was already on the storage box. But an entry on this menu is convenient, and also avoids the risk of failing to reset the option after use:

At the same time I have made the timbering data... menu item easier to find (it was previously at the bottom of the menu):

3. More basic geometric shape items have been added on the sketchboard: square, triangle, arc, ring, segment, quadrangle, enclosure, corner are new:

These provide a bit more flexibility in creating symbols and custom combined items. For example the ring will be useful for goods line signal arms on signal box diagrams.

They can all be resized, stretched and rotated as before. And can be outlines, infill, or both, in any colours you wish, with adjustable transparency.

For the arc and ring, the inner radius can be set as a % of the outer radius. Setting zero for this produces a full arc sector -- useful for coloured pie diagrams.

4. Geometric and freehand shape items can now have their outlines edited. Red diamond marker items are added which can be dragged to new positions, deleted, inserted, etc. Click the ? help button for more information.

5. I have made some improvements to the editor for formatted text blocks on the sketchboard:

The above editor in Templot is suitable for neat formatted plain text. But for tables, icons, logos, etc., importing or pasting from Word (or other RTF source) is needed. The sketchboard is often used for signal box diagrams, so being able to import locking tables, etc., is useful. Save from Word in RTF format. For large images add these to the sketchboard separately as overlaid image items.

New options for coloured background, border, and adjustable margins have been added to the formatted text blocks.

Formatted text blocks can be rotated on the sketchboard.

6. There are some changes to the gauge/scale pre-sets:

00-SF has been renamed 4-SF. This is a name change only, there are no changes to the settings. There have been objections to the 00 designation for other than 16.5mm track gauge.

EM-SF has been added. 18.0mm gauge with 0.8mm flangeways (0.8mm check chairs are available from C&L). This maintains the 17.2mm check gauge for existing EM wheels, with the improved appearance of narrower flangeways. Minimum back-to-back 16.5mm, not suitable for RTR wheels. 

H00-DN has been added. 3.75mm/ft on 16.2mm track gauge. 1.0mm flangeways.

P-32 has been added. ScaleOne32 standard, see:

0-XF has been removed as unworkable.

7. There is a new option for centre-line-only track templates to be drawn in the style of the background shapes (colour and line width) when used as dummy templates. They are often used as such to represent curving baseboard edges and other structures, and as construction marks. This option will make them more prominent and their meaning clear. geometry > centre-lines only (dummy) menu item.

8. The make transition function has new dialogs when one or both of the original templates is itself a transition curve:

Previously only the peg location option was available, often requiring inconvenient swapping of the peg to the opposite end, and confusing beginners.

9. When running under Wine on Linux / CrossOver all modal dialogs can now be escaped via the keyboard (ESC key).

and in 213a  ...

10. Since the earliest days of Templot, the turnout road centre-line has linked directly from the V-crossing to the deflection point DP (CTRL-3), instead of following the actual turnout curve:

Until now I have left this feature unchanged, mainly because it is a useful aid when zoomed out on the trackpad, or looking at the printed templates, to identify quickly the hand of the template.

But it is not entirely convenient, so I have belatedly done something about it. The turnout-road centre-line will now follow the curve, and terminate at the switch heel:

This is still visible, just, as a hand marker when zoomed out:

This now makes it much easier to peg partial templates onto the turnout curve -- for example when inserting catch points into a turnout, or creating type-2 tandems where the second switch is in the turnout road of the first switch. Previously to do this it was necessary to run the peg along the rail rather than the centre-line to the required position. Now you can start from say CTRL-6 peg position and run it directly down the centre-line (CTRL-F8 mouse action).

Here for example I have inserted a set of catch points into this turnout:

11. Two option boxes have been missing from the V-crossing dialog for 15 years. :(

I have now added them.

This dialog is at template > V-crossing settings... menu item, or real > V-crossing options > V-crossing settings... menu item. Or by right-clicking on the green crossing-type indicator at the top left of the trackpad.

There are two likely reasons for selecting the fixed at... option for the crossing entry straight on regular-type V-crossings:

1. you are shortening this particular turnout to get a better fit to the available space, without wanting to change the switch size or crossing angle. In this case you would leave the boxes unticked, so that the setting reverts to auto-fit on subsequent templates. Or

2. you are matching a specific prototype drawing to produce a custom template. In this case you would probably want to tick the boxes, so that the setting is retained in all your subsequent templates.

Note that the fixed at... option is selected automatically when you use the the SHIFT-F11 mouse action (adjust V-crossing entry straight).

12. Sometimes the position at the left of the screen of the pop-up context menu for a selected background template is not convenient. It can now be changed:

The settings are included in your saved program preferences (if you are saving them).

13. There are new mouse actions to adjust the adjacent track centres settings, instead of entering the dimensions directly. This makes use of the geometry > centre-line options > functions* in order to see what you are doing, which means these need to be reset afterwards.

(*Unless you are already using the geometry > adjacent options > adjacent rails as guide lines option. In which case changing the centre-line to use the dummy vehicle is optional.)

The new mouse actions will be useful in two situations:

1. where you have some existing double track at an unknown spacing, and wish to create some connecting double track into which you can insert a crossover, say.

2. when using the dummy vehicle tool to determine the required spacing for running clearance at different radii. Here is a quick bit of scruffy video illustrating that:

(That's in the awful fuzzy MP4 format, so everyone on the planet should be able to see it.)

You can see that I determined that a track spacing of about 46mm centres would be preferable for this EM track at this radius, instead of the usual 6ft way (44.67mm centres).

I could then have gone on to do tools > make double-track TS if I wished.

14. Sometimes when zoomed in on the control template it is not obvious whether it is straight, curved, or a transition curve template. Which it may be necessary to know before making adjustments.

You can easily find out by clicking the geometry menu to see which of the top 3 items is showing a bullet mark.

But I thought it would be convenient to have the information visible at a glance, so I have added a curving indicator on the information panel. This shows:

st  for a straight template
co  for a constant radius template
tr  for a transition curve template

If a slew is present in the template, there is also a tilde character (swung dash) prefix:

~st    ~co    ~tr

15. Symmetrical Y-turnouts:

There is a new peg position at peg on split deflection:

This puts the peg on the TP switch toe position (CTRL-2) but at half the switch deflection angle. Which makes it easy to peg an irregular half-diamond onto a bit of plain track to create a switch front.

This makes a quick way to improvise a symmetrical Y-turnout.

In practice in many track planning situations there would be no need to create a separate switch front, it could be pegged directly onto an existing approach track. Then rolling the rails to put the switch-front rail joints in the right place.

It's not a perfect solution, because being a half-diamond template some turnout functions are not available. But as a quick alternative to a full construction using partial templates I think it will be very useful.

Taking this a bit further, there is a new option to replace the K-crossing timbering with the timber spacings and rail joint positions copied from any switch you choose (or those for a custom switch). This works best if you match the K-crossing angle with the switch tip deflection angle. For example in this case I selected a GWR 10ft curved switch, and set the K-crossing angle to 1:37 to match:

This doesn't change any of the rail alignments, so it is still not a proper prototypical switch. But it looks better, with the switch tips correctly overlapping the timber centre, etc. If you choose a curved type switch from the list, it will be quite close.

Comparing the above screenshot with the previous one, you can see the improved timbering at the switch tips, and the rail joint positions.

This is now the alert message when accessing the switch settings dialog when there is a half-diamond in the control template:

bug-fix: the track gauge was wrong after making plain track from a gaunt turnout. Fixed.

bug-fix: flat-bottom rail foot lines were being created for centre-line-only templates. Fixed.

bug-fix: the make transition function failed if the fixing peg was not on the main-road centre-line. Fixed.

bug-fix: the make diamond-crossing at intersection function was setting the V-crossing type as curviform even when the diamond-crossing was a regular pattern. Fixed.

This change-log topic is now far too long, so further update changes will be announced individually on Templot Club as they are made. September 2017.

Download the latest version of Templot:


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