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1st message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 05:53
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Its only right that I don't jump in and take on things that by-pass the basics. Watched the first video and took all in before deciding to go ahead and follow the routines in the video. 
Silly question but how do I draw a straight piece of track or is the default 'straight' always a turnout?

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2nd message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 09:47
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from:
John Palmer
 

 

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To convert a template with a turnout to plain track: (Menu) template -> convert to plain track.
To convert a curved template to a straight: (Menu) geometry -> straight.

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3rd message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 09:58
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Jim Guthrie
United Kingdom

 

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Tony,

The quickest way is to use the Quick dialog box which you can call up with Ctrl-Q. In that dialog box you can select a turnout with a choice of switches and crossings and radii. But you can also select plain track, either straight or with a choice of radii.

You can also select the default turnout which appears when you start up Templot and use the "Template/Convert to plain Track" menu item when you are left with a plain track based on the main route through the template. To get the track straight, use the F6 Curving facility and type in a very high radius value - like 1000000 - and you get your line straight. I don't think Martin allowed for the insertion of infinity. :)

Jim.
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4th message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 10:52
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Thanks Jim and John, will try that.
Cheers
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5th message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 11:00
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Jim Guthrie wrote: The quickest way is to use the Quick dialog box which you can call up with Ctrl-Q.Hi Jim,

Or click the NEW button at the top of the screen.

To get the track straight, use the F6 Curving facility and type in a very high radius value - like 1000000 - and you get your line straight. I don't think Martin allowed for the insertion of infinity. :)
Or just click the geometry > straight menu item.

regards,

Martin.

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6th message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 11:26
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from:
Jim Guthrie
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Martin Wynne wrote: Jim Guthrie wrote: The quickest way is to use the Quick dialog box which you can call up with Ctrl-Q.Hi Jim,

Or click the NEW button at the top of the screen.

To get the track straight, use the F6 Curving facility and type in a very high radius value - like 1000000 - and you get your line straight. I don't think Martin allowed for the insertion of infinity. :)
Or just click the geometry > straight menu item.

regards,

Martin.
Martin,

You must be tempted to give up in despair with all us ancients who still operate Templot as it was years ago.  :) :) :)

Jim.

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7th message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 11:45
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Jim Guthrie wrote:Martin,

You must be tempted to give up in despair with all us ancients who still operate Templot as it was years ago.  :) :) :)
Hi Jim,

Not despair exactly, but it is the reason for paragraph 3 at:

 http://templot.com/companion/terms_of_use.html

You can understand a beginner such as Tony getting mighty confused. That's why it's important that I do get on and make some progress with the Templot Companion. Just saying "lots of friendly help on Templot Club" isn't much help if the friends all say different things.

I do wonder how other software copes with this problem?

And having said I'm going to get on with the Templot Companion, I'm not actually doing it today or any other day for months now, because it is far more interesting to get on with the code for the NLS map imports, or the code for auto-generated outside slips, or the code for... :)

regards,

Martin.

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8th message | this message only posted: 15 Sep 2017 19:22
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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I watched one of the video tutorials and found it very interesting. I've tried following the routines in the video and managed to keep up with things. I was not able to activate the command Ctrl + F6 Snake through Peg and was really puzzled as to what it does. Can someone explain please.
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9th message | this message only posted: 16 Sep 2017 07:39
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Tony McGartland wrote: I watched one of the video tutorials and found it very interesting. I've tried following the routines in the video and managed to keep up with things. I was not able to activate the command Ctrl + F6 Snake through Peg and was really puzzled as to what it does. Can someone explain please.Hi Tony,

If CTRL+F6 doesn't work on your system, you can instead simply press 6 on the main keyboard. The same applies to the other CTRL+F functions.

If that also doesn't work, all the mouse actions can be accessed from the action menu.

There are two related functions, snake and slide. I have made you a bit of scruff video showing them in action:

 https://flashbackconnect.com/Default.aspx?id=6WxyhoKGPkY4JeXVAjxuTA2

The snake through peg mouse action translates the control template along its alignment, leaving its fixing peg and its alignment fixed in position on the trackpad. This means it remains in alignment with other templates, even if there is a gap between them. If its fixing peg is not on the main-road centre-line, it is moved there when this mouse action starts.

In the video the template alignment is in a separate background template so that you can see what is happening. That is not usually the case of course.

The slide through peg mouse action moves the fixing peg along its current centre-line and shifts/rotates the template on the trackpad to keep the fixing peg fixed in position on the trackpad. The template alignment shifts with the template.

If the peg is on the main-road centre-line and the template is not on a transition curve or slewed, these two mouse actions are very similar in end result. Otherwise they produce different results as you can see in the video.

In practice, snake tends to be used much more often than slide.

Note in the video that although the red fixing peg appears to get "left behind" it is still part of the control template. Each template has its own fixing peg, which can be anywhere -- it doesn't have to be within its boundary.

If my explanations above are impenetrable, sorry about that. Folks often complain that my use of English leaves them none the wiser. Perhaps someone else will jump in with an explanation in different words.

There is another mouse action called roam (beginner button or CTRL+F9 or 9), which can often be used instead, and is perhaps easier to understand. There is a more detailed explanation of that in a proper video (i.e. edited, non-scruff) here:

 http://templot.com/companion/4_where_do_i_start.html

There is a further mouse action called orbit (CTRL+F5 or 5) which could often be used too. In this case the fixing peg remains in its position on the control template and takes no part in the process. Try it and see. :)

regards,

Martin. 
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10th message | this message only posted: 17 Sep 2017 13:56
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Martin, there was a very simple explanation for the problem that I'm almost embarrassed to tell you about. On the Mac the Function keys require a Function (Fn) key to be held with the required F key. Since I never use Function keys on the Mac I simply didn't know. My apologies.
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11th message | this message only posted: 17 Sep 2017 14:18
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Hi Tony,

Glad you found the answer. :)

No reason to be embarrassed. I know nothing at all about Macs, having never used one.

And there is masses of simple stuff on Windows that still comes as a surprise to me.

regards,

Martin.

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12th message | this message only posted: 5 Oct 2017 05:59
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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A few basics I don't understand.......
1. The 'peg' is the red marker on the track?
2. If I lay a length of straight track and apply a curve to it. How can I make that or any section of track 'live' if I return to it later to make further changes?


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13th message | this message only posted: 7 Oct 2017 22:26
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Tony McGartland wrote: A few basics I don't understand.......
1. The 'peg' is the red marker on the track?
2. If I lay a length of straight track and apply a curve to it. How can I make that or any section of track 'live' if I return to it later to make further changes?
Hi Tony,

Sorry I didn't see this message until now. I will reply shortly.

regards,

Martin.

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14th message | this message only posted: 8 Oct 2017 00:52
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Tony McGartland wrote: A few basics I don't understand.......
1. The 'peg' is the red marker on the track?
Hi Tony,

Yes, every template has its own fixing peg:



You can imagine the red fixing peg as a "drawing pin" locating a paper template on the baseboard.

For example try the CTRL-F8 move peg mouse action (or just the 8 key). Moving the mouse from side to side slides the red peg symbol along the track centre-line. Leave it somewhere near the middle of the turnout. If you now try the F6 curving action you will see that the response is slightly different, with the turnout "fixed" to the pad at the peg. Try also the F8 rotate mouse action.

More about the fixing peg here:

 http://www.templot.com/martweb/gs_geometry.htm

2. If I lay a length of straight track and apply a curve to it. How can I make that or any section of track 'live' if I return to it later to make further changes? Click on the template which you want. It will highlight in white, and its menu will appear on the left of the screen. Click the make the control menu item, or press M on the keyboard:



The background template is transferred into the control template so that you can make changes to it.

And the previous control template is stored as a background template:



regards,

Martin.

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15th message | this message only posted: 8 Oct 2017 19:23
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Martin, thanks for this very informative reply. I spent a fair bit of the day exploring many commands. There is so much to learn, I'm being a disciplined as possible.

Is it possible to add a straight bit of track to another to continue a curve with a different radius, or is there an easier way to do this?
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from:
Tony W
North Notts., United Kingdom

 

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Tony McGartland wrote: Martin, thanks for this very informative reply. I spent a fair bit of the day exploring many commands. There is so much to learn, I'm being a disciplined as possible.

Is it possible to add a straight bit of track to another to continue a curve with a different radius, or is there an easier way to do this?
Hi Tony.
This can be done simply with the shift and join button at the top of the screen. When you move the ends of the two templates close enough they will snap together automatically.
There is also a rather more elegant way of of doing this with the transition curve method.
Move the peg to the end of the template you wish to fix or peg to the Trackpad. Ctrl 0 or Ctrl 1.
Use the F4 key to extend the length of the control template. Then selected the Geometry drop down menu, go to the transition curve sub menu and choose one of the options such as C curve expanding transition. This will generate a transition curve with the larger radius twice the smaller one if your starting track was curved. Now repeat the process but this time choose the Zero-length instant transition at peg option. You can now adjust the boundary between the two radius by using Shift + Ctrl + F3 adjust transition start position. You can adjust the radii of either using the F6 key (note which radius is being altered which can be changed with Shift + Crtl + F1 or Shift + Ctrl + F2.
This method is one that I use a great deal when planning of variable curves as it allows much more precise alignments to be created than using individual curves and straights so pays dividends later. It also demonstrates I think the power of the program and gives a glimpse of the possibilities within.
Regards
Tony.
Martin will probably explain an easier way of doing the above that I have missed.

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17th message | this message only posted: 9 Oct 2017 05:50
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Tony, thanks for that. Makes perfect sense but having laid one piece of track when I go to elect another, it cause my first piece to take on the new command and move from its position.......
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Tony W
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Tony McGartland wrote: Tony, thanks for that. Makes perfect sense but having laid one piece of track when I go to elect another, it cause my first piece to take on the new command and move from its position.......Did you save your Control template to the storage box first? The easy way to do this is to use the insert key. In Templot you build up a track plan as a series of background templates (shown in Blue on the Trackpad) in the storage box. You can only alter the Control template (shown in white). To make a copy of a background template and leave the original where it is place the mouse pointer on the desired background template and either right or left click the mouse and select C copy to the control from the menu that comes up.
Don't forget to save the contents of the Storage box to your hard drive at the end of the session.  Open the storage box and click the save all button.
Regards
Tony.
PS I wrote a beginners guide for an earlier version, which is now a bit out of date but you may still find it useful as it explains many of the basics. It can be found here http://templot.com/companion/beginners_guide_tony_wilkins.html


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19th message | this message only posted: 9 Oct 2017 11:58
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Martin Wynne
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Tony McGartland wrote: Is it possible to add a straight bit of track to another to continue a curve with a different radius, or is there an easier way to do this?Hi Tony,

Going back to the original question, yes it is possible. :)

However, it is not really something you should want to do. You are approaching Templot as if it is a "pick and place" program like AnyRail, XTrackCAD, and many others. It isn't.

Tony W has explained some of the alternatives, but the basic answer without dropping to the low-level functions, is "extend and split". This is the usual way to finish with one template and start with the next one, when there isn't a specific tools function to do what you want. By splitting from the first template you retain all its settings, and the initial curving radius will match.

I really must soon do some more on the new Templot Explained beginners guide, but in the meantime I have made you a bit of scruff video showing "extend and split". For plain track templates it is necessary to use the peg to mark the split position. Here is the video: 

 https://flashbackconnect.com/Default.aspx?id=_HdPZUrRoP5SIkRUmkIa5g2

p.s. before repeating the process for the next template press CTRL+N, template > swap end-for-end. Otherwise you would need to do make the control on the new background template. Try it and see.

regards,

Martin.

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20th message | this message only posted: 9 Oct 2017 19:22
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from:
Tony McGartland
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Martin, I appreciate this. To be honest,your video was pretty good and I managed to get the hang of it. Is it fair to say that laying track over a drawing could mean quite a few splits and movement of the peg to trace the layout of the track accurately?

I did a small section of track and I had to move the peg 4 times to obtain an accurate curve over my background drawing.
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21st message | this message only posted: 9 Oct 2017 21:00
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from:
Martin Wynne
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Tony McGartland wrote:Is it fair to say that laying track over a drawing could mean quite a few splits and movement of the peg to trace the layout of the track accurately?Hi Tony,

You are determined to jump in the deep end!

Aligning tracks over a background image is tricky. Even the original designer of your goods yard didn't have to do that. Normally I suggest not to try it until you have a good grasp of all the functions in Templot because you are likely to need all of them. This note is on the download page:



Your method of stepping along the track in a series of short templates will obviously work, but then how are going to insert the pointwork where it's needed?

Unless tracks are obviously dead straight, the usual method I would use is to add several strategic dummy templates using the CTRL+F10 swell function. You can then create transition curves between them, and later delete the dummy templates. Even then you may need an occasional slew as the only way to get an exact match. Sometimes the only possible conclusion is that the map must be wrong.

More about using CTRL+F10 swell here:

 http://templot.com/companion/swell_function_ctrl_f10.html

More about creating a transition curve between dummy templates here:

 http://templot.com/companion/link_existing.html

regards,

Martin.

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22nd message | this message only posted: 10 Oct 2017 04:57
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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Making a fresh new start......
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23rd message | this message only posted: 14 Oct 2017 05:47
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Tony McGartland
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Martin Wynne wrote: Tony McGartland wrote: Is it possible to add a straight bit of track to another to continue a curve with a different radius, or is there an easier way to do this?Hi Tony,

Going back to the original question, yes it is possible. :)

However, it is not really something you should want to do. You are approaching Templot as if it is a "pick and place" program like AnyRail, XTrackCAD, and many others. It isn't.

Tony W has explained some of the alternatives, but the basic answer without dropping to the low-level functions, is "extend and split". This is the usual way to finish with one template and start with the next one, when there isn't a specific tools function to do what you want. By splitting from the first template you retain all its settings, and the initial curving radius will match.

I really must soon do some more on the new Templot Explained beginners guide, but in the meantime I have made you a bit of scruff video showing "extend and split". For plain track templates it is necessary to use the peg to mark the split position. Here is the video: 

 https://flashbackconnect.com/Default.aspx?id=_HdPZUrRoP5SIkRUmkIa5g2

p.s. before repeating the process for the next template press CTRL+N, template > swap end-for-end. Otherwise you would need to do make the control on the new background template. Try it and see.

regards,

Martin.
I'm determined to grasp this, I'm back to the basics!

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Tony McGartland
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I am working through a section of track which has a simple turnout and a Y crossing right into the siding. This Y branches off at one side (where I have placed my peg) to a turntable and the other to an engine shed. Can I insert a I at the peg?
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Tony McGartland
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Think I've got it, I made a split at the peg, highlighted the branch, made it the control, then placed the turnout. Its a left-hand turnout, can I change this for a Y.
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Tony McGartland
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Think I've got it, I made a split at the peg, highlighted the branch, made it the control, then placed the turnout. Its a left-hand turnout, can I change this for a Y.
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DerekStuart
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Hello Tony

The way I would do that (which may not be the 'official' way) would be to curve the control template along the route you want and then change the vee to a curviform and then increase/decrease the angle until you get it how you want. (trying to keep to whole or half numbers- ie 6,6.5,7 etc)

That will give you a very close approximation of a Y. Also set timbering to equalised.

To get a more precise Y, you need to use partial templates, including half an ordinary crossover, but if I understand rightly you aren't quite at that point yet.

I'm sure others will be better placed how to make a more precise Y when you are ready to do so. Good luck.
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Martin Wynne
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Tony McGartland wrote: Think I've got it, I made a split at the peg, highlighted the branch, made it the control, then placed the turnout. Its a left-hand turnout, can I change this for a Y.Hi Tony,

You don't need a Y-turnout. Beginners keep asking for Y-turnouts, but they are really quite rare on the prototype. Unless you have actual prototype evidence of a split-deflection switch, all you need to do is to apply some contraflexure (negative curving radius) to an ordinary turnout.

Quite often when you do that, you will also want to change to a curviform V-crossing, so that the branch track diverges rapidly and curves away from the main road. But don't do that if the turnout is part of a curved crossover, leave it as (or change it to) a regular V-crossing.

You don't need to make a split to get a turnout where you want it. You can simply roam it into position. You can split off the approach and/or exit tracks afterwards if needed.

All that in this scruff video:

 https://flashbackconnect.com/Default.aspx?id=UalU_1Uz_WjSC4_ftCxHsA2

Note however how scruffy it is - in the last few frames I failed to release the mouse action before stopping it, resulting in an unintended change in the radius.

I'm finding making these videos really hard work nowadays. It took me about an hour to make this one, and edit it to being remotely usable on all screen sizes. :(

More about curviform V-crossings here:

 http://www.templot.com/martweb/gs_realtrack.htm#xing_types

regards,

Martin.

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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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p.s.

Note that in the video I used the menus to swap facing/trailing and swap hand.

These frequently used functions are also available on the beginner buttons:



In addition to the keyboard shortcuts which I would normally use (CTRL+N, CTRL+X).

Martin.

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from:
Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Martin, the videos are always welcome. I've done a little more but how how I extend the two branches coming off the turnout with straight track segments going into a shed?
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Martin Wynne
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Tony McGartland wrote:I've done a little more but how how I extend the two branches coming off the turnout with straight track segments going into a shed?Hi Tony,

You could split off, or add, separate straight templates, but the easy way is to first extend sufficient length (F4) on the existing templates and then click geometry > transition curve > easement to straight.

For the turnout, put the peg on CTRL-0 first.

For the lower track in your screenshot, you need to swap end-for-end first. (Or else do easement from straight instead).

Then use SHIFT+CTRL+F3 and SHIFT+CTRL+F4 to get the change from curve to straight where you want it. Just play about with them to see the effects, I don't think I have the strength to make another video today. You can use the quick keys [ and ] instead on most systems.

regards,

Martin.

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from:
Tony McGartland
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Martin,
I will explore myself, don't worry about the video. I'll read through some of the other postings, theres always a lot to learn from others


Martin Wynne wrote: Tony McGartland wrote:I've done a little more but how how I extend the two branches coming off the turnout with straight track segments going into a shed?Hi Tony,

You could split off, or add, separate straight templates, but the easy way is to first extend sufficient length (F4) on the existing templates and then click geometry > transition curve > easement to straight.

For the turnout, put the peg on CTRL-0 first.

For the lower track in your screenshot, you need to swap end-for-end first. (Or else do easement from straight instead).

Then use SHIFT+CTRL+F3 and SHIFT+CTRL+F4 to get the change from curve to straight where you want it. Just play about with them to see the effects, I don't think I have the strength to make another video today. You can use the quick keys [ and ] instead on most systems.

regards,

Martin.


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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Tony McGartland wrote: I will explore myself, don't worry about the video. I'll read through some of the other postings, theres always a lot to learn from othersHi Tony,

I have now had a nice boiled egg and put on thicker socks, so I will make you a bit more video shortly.

Tracks in an engine shed are typically at 15ft centres:



It would make a nice exercise to put that image on the trackpad as a guide.

regards,

Martin.

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Martin Wynne
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Martin Wynne wrote:I have now had a nice boiled egg and put on thicker socks, so I will make you a bit more video shortly.Hi Tony,

Another video, creating your engine shed tracks:

 https://flashbackconnect.com/Default.aspx?id=Bxx5m6dSF5usPBJVhpWTYw2

regards,

Martin.

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Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Martin,
This was another very informative video, I appreciate the time you have taken to produce it. It really shows how powerful the programme is and yet how simple (when you know) it is to use. I've a lot of reading and video to get through here today to keep me busy. Its now time for my 'nice boiled egg' too, cheers!
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Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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Martin, going through your tutorial video at moment. When I go to 'transition curve' - 'Easement to Straight' the arrow points in the opposite direction to yours? Why is this.......

also, I tried printing the drawing just to see what it looked like and although the quality was perfect, the printer didn't seem to print it all. Is it better to export to pdf for printing?
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Tony W
North Notts., United Kingdom

 

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Tony McGartland wrote: Martin, going through your tutorial video at moment. When I go to 'transition curve' - 'Easement to Straight' the arrow points in the opposite direction to yours? Why is this.......
Hi Tony.
It all depends which end of the template is attached to the previous one (Ctrl 0 or Ctrl 1). For a length of plain track Ctrl 1 is the reference end and has the line across the end.
To change it Wipe the template to the control, if it is not already the control template, and swap end for end (Ctrl + n), it will then match the tutorial.

also, I tried printing the drawing just to see what it looked like and although the quality was perfect, the printer didn't seem to print it all. Is it better to export to pdf for printing?What did you ask Templot to print?
If you used the print now option there are three choices, print just the control template (the black and grey one) or print all the background templates (the blue ones) or print group (only available if a group is selected. These options will produce an uncalibrated printout whose accuracy is not guaranteed. For a more accurate printout use the Output option, which is far more flexible, but you must set up the printer at the bottom of this menu first.
It does not need to be converted to a PDF unless you are going to have it commercially printed.
Regards
Tony.


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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Tony McGartland wrote: Martin, going through your tutorial video at moment. When I go to 'transition curve' - 'Easement to Straight' the arrow points in the opposite direction to yours? Why is this.......Hi Tony,

That is actually the better way round because it means the rail lengths and timbering are originating from the vee rail joints on the turnout.

Click the template > swap end-for-end menu item to swap a template end-for end, or press CTRL+N.

Note however that it has also swapped the 1st and 2nd radii when you want to adjust them, and an easement to straight becomes an easement from straight.

But I'm puzzled how you got there by following the video, perhaps you could post a screenshot?

I tried printing the drawing just to see what it looked like and although the quality was perfect, the printer didn't seem to print it all. Is it better to export to pdf for printing?There's no need to export a PDF simply to print, it is better to print directly from Templot. Whatever was missing in the print would also be missing in the PDF.

The two most likely explanations are:

1. you printed the control template (F11) instead of the entire track plan (all background templates, CTRL+F11). When you print the control template, only those background templates which happen to be on the same page(s) get printed.

or

2. part of your track plan is in the negative quadrants on the grid. In order to print them you would need to move the page origin (SHIFT+CTRL+F10). But it is generally better to keep everything in the positive quadrant my moving the entire track plan (SHIFT+CTRL+F7 or just press the BACKSLASH key).

regards,

Martin.

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Tony McGartland
Omagh, Ireland

 

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I imported the actual engineers drawing that I want to work on and I followed your video up to the point where 'easement from straight' occurred. As you can see the arrow faces the wrong way. I also have to adjust the other tracks on the mainline but can go to them later. I cannot find the actual menu command where you performed the straightening of the curved section in the engine shed.
Ps. What are the little tags on the shot TR014 etc?

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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Hi Tony,

Thanks for posting that. But it has a left-hand turnout and is different from the screenshot which you posted previously:



which had a right-hand turnout and which I used as a starting point for the video.

So it's difficult to know exactly what you clicked to get there. As it stands it looks that you would need to click geometry > transition curve > swap transition radii to get what you want.

Ps. What are the little tags on the shot TR014 etc? Little tags? Do you mean the template name labels? You can turn them off if not wanted by pressing the END key, or trackpad > hide name labels.

regards,

Martin.

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