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(Yes, I'm responding to my own snarky comment in the third person.)
(Bob Dole thinks Bob Dole will make a great presidential candidate.)
(Jimmy's going to get you Kramer!)
The link you provided offers some very nice looking rail configurations. My only concern is color matching the dark gray Lego rails with 3rd party rails. In this case, I would probably go all 3rd party black for consistency and to get nicer track configurations. And I think I would still sleep well at night using the 3rd party tracks.
Gotta love threads like this; inspirational pictures and links, advice on a subset of Lego collecting/building, a small snark fest, apologies, jokes.
Will the Emerald Knight going to be a freebie later in the year with a train release?
Ideally I'd rather motorize it using a motor in the locomotive itself, as it's very fragile right now when it comes to derailing. If the track isn't just right, and the stars aren't in alignment, the front wheels pop off and the whole train falls over. This is partly because the coal car is pushing the locomotive; the cables that go between them, as well as the magnetic coupler, are very good at transmitting vertical force to the locomotive. This vertical force causes the front wheels to lift. I have to carefully tuck all the loose cables in so that they are as tight as possible, to minimize derailing. As soon as one of my kids pulls the coal car and locomotive apart, the cables become untucked and the train is unsteady again.
- Put the PF train motor under the coal tender, and the battery box in the tender. This required rebuilding the tender to make it a bit longer and higher.
- Put the IR receiver in the locomotive's cabin. This required rebuilding the roof so that the IR sensor could poke out the top. If you don't do that, you don't get good reception.
- I put a boat weight in the front of the locomotive to try to add downward pressure on the front wheels to help prevent derailing. It didn't really help much.
- I put a technic beam on the wheels to make it look more like a steam engine.
I also made him a dark green caboose, partially to add some weight on the backend. The PF stuff is in the middle car: