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Old 07-17-2020, 09:57 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Ruger,

There are at least fifteen articles throughout Steam in the Garden that deal with the Ruby, including the late John Thomson's series on how to "Perk Up Your Ruby". Every Steam in the Garden issue is online and available in digital form (PDF). You only need a digital subscription to gain access. You can then download the PDF's and have a wealth of knowledge specific to the Ruby at your fingertips. Check it out at www.steamup.com.

Scott
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Old 07-17-2020, 12:49 PM   #12 (permalink)
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ruger
I know little about live steam, but
ive read the marc horovitz book, a passion for steam, which is a start. it helped me from feeling helpless regarding live steam mechanics. tweaking, well that another skill set entirely.


$4k , without joy would be enough to break most guys spirits.


FWIW,
I own the lgb aster frank s, manual and its a breeze once you read the article on firing it posted at southern steam (the US aster site)-the trick is to angle the tender front up a touch to avoid liquid butane from entering the fuel line until its fired.


I own a roundhouse R/C sandy river. its foolproof and a lot of fun. easy to light, easy to run.
if you buy any roundhouse, you will be delighted. they are designed to run easily and well. no conditions.
pricey, yes, but like certain autos, you get what you pay for in long term and in operational joy.


both will run, no issues on R1, but prefer wider radii.


I suggest, respectfully, that you chose a couple of first time steamers that are ...fussy to say the least.


I will say, if you try either the frank s or any roundhouse loco, your live steam life will go from unreliable and annoying, to simple and joyful.


I don't know what to say, other than, sell the things that make you unhappy, and, try again, if you like live steam.


I have not taken the plunge on the upper end asters, due mostly to my running limitations on my rather small outside layout. I am thinking of the Japanese logging Baldwin, however, despite it being a different scale.


I like the ceremony and other aspects of live steam. Larger radii, and, zero grades are a big plus, imho.


otoh, electric is so much more convenient and spontaneous. but its apples and oranges.


best of luck
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Old 07-21-2020, 12:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Thank you for the link, Scott. Looks like plenty of interesting items to read. Ruby is close to becoming a prop. I have a wandering eye for a RoundHouse or Regner rodded loco...but, we'll see. Ruby may be a little to 'hot' for my tight, crude track that would seem proper for a Heisler!

Have a good one!

Ruger


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Originally Posted by scottemcdonald View Post
Ruger,

There are at least fifteen articles throughout Steam in the Garden that deal with the Ruby, including the late John Thomson's series on how to "Perk Up Your Ruby". Every Steam in the Garden issue is online and available in digital form (PDF). You only need a digital subscription to gain access. You can then download the PDF's and have a wealth of knowledge specific to the Ruby at your fingertips. Check it out at www.steamup.com.

Scott
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Old 07-21-2020, 12:59 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Hey there, Steve. Thanks for the information. The Regner Heisler is practically as flawless as steam can get. I have trouble loading fuel - but, when the tank is 100+ degree from the sun alone, it does require a finesse. Fueling in the AM is a breeze as the tank is 78 degrees or so.

I will buy, probably, 2 more locos - one may be a RH. I like Sandy River....a lot.

Thinking last night, I wonder how many potential steamers have been 'run off' by the purchase of a cheap Ruby - just to have it derail. I'm sure most buy the Ruby and an R1 oval - like I did - just to have too many bad runs vs. enjoyable runs.

Less buyers in our industry can mean higher prices and fewer choices as time moves.

Anyway, have a good one and thanks again!

Ruger


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Originally Posted by stevedenver View Post
ruger
I know little about live steam, but
ive read the marc horovitz book, a passion for steam, which is a start. it helped me from feeling helpless regarding live steam mechanics. tweaking, well that another skill set entirely.


$4k , without joy would be enough to break most guys spirits.


FWIW,
I own the lgb aster frank s, manual and its a breeze once you read the article on firing it posted at southern steam (the US aster site)-the trick is to angle the tender front up a touch to avoid liquid butane from entering the fuel line until its fired.


I own a roundhouse R/C sandy river. its foolproof and a lot of fun. easy to light, easy to run.
if you buy any roundhouse, you will be delighted. they are designed to run easily and well. no conditions.
pricey, yes, but like certain autos, you get what you pay for in long term and in operational joy.


both will run, no issues on R1, but prefer wider radii.


I suggest, respectfully, that you chose a couple of first time steamers that are ...fussy to say the least.


I will say, if you try either the frank s or any roundhouse loco, your live steam life will go from unreliable and annoying, to simple and joyful.


I don't know what to say, other than, sell the things that make you unhappy, and, try again, if you like live steam.


I have not taken the plunge on the upper end asters, due mostly to my running limitations on my rather small outside layout. I am thinking of the Japanese logging Baldwin, however, despite it being a different scale.


I like the ceremony and other aspects of live steam. Larger radii, and, zero grades are a big plus, imho.


otoh, electric is so much more convenient and spontaneous. but its apples and oranges.


best of luck
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Old 07-22-2020, 11:59 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Thinking last night, I wonder how many potential steamers have been 'run off' by the purchase of a cheap Ruby - just to have it derail. I'm sure most buy the Ruby and an R1 oval - like I did - just to have too many bad runs vs. enjoyable runs.

Less buyers in our industry can mean higher prices and fewer choices as time moves.
An excellent observation. Those of us who have tried a Ruby and moved on to something better would agree with you. (Especially those with R1 curves. Note that the Accucraft specs call for 4' radius, 8' diameter for the Ruby!)



When asked, I always suggest the next 'grade' of Accucraft model - the $1,000-$1,800 Shay, Mogul, or similar medium size locos. They are much easier to handle and run very nicely.

BTW, don't be put off Accucraft by the Ruby. The medium size models, while not foolproof like a Roundhouse, are very nice and great fun to steam.
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Old 07-22-2020, 05:39 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I found the problems and foibles of the Ruby to great learning studies. I made numerous mods including turning it into a 2-4-4 Forney. I must admit that I haven't run it in a long time but I have never been sorry that it was my first steamer.
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Old 07-27-2020, 05:37 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I tell ya, Pete. I'll only recommend a geared loco for the budding enthusiast. You can hastily track down (in most cases), and have rewarding, forgiving performance from these crawlers.

My opinion only: you need $5K to get into this hobby comfortably....put $2K or so into a loco...do it right. Track, switches, leveling, etc will fill in the other $3K or so... Can always quickly sell (a quality loco) if steaming winds up not being your thing..

Of course, I've yet to operate a proper rodded loco....that may change within days...if I can find something... hmm Wilson....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Thornton View Post
An excellent observation. Those of us who have tried a Ruby and moved on to something better would agree with you. (Especially those with R1 curves. Note that the Accucraft specs call for 4' radius, 8' diameter for the Ruby!)



When asked, I always suggest the next 'grade' of Accucraft model - the $1,000-$1,800 Shay, Mogul, or similar medium size locos. They are much easier to handle and run very nicely.

BTW, don't be put off Accucraft by the Ruby. The medium size models, while not foolproof like a Roundhouse, are very nice and great fun to steam.
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Old 07-27-2020, 05:41 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I would agree. Ruby frustration is (for me at least) more of a knock on the company support. I'll get the Ruby going again - probably similar to yours in that I'll transform it into something else....within $ reason, of course.

It remains a cheap platform to exercise my own madness (i.e. replacing safety valve with bolt, etc).

Quote:
Originally Posted by placitassteam View Post
I found the problems and foibles of the Ruby to great learning studies. I made numerous mods including turning it into a 2-4-4 Forney. I must admit that I haven't run it in a long time but I have never been sorry that it was my first steamer.
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Old 07-28-2020, 02:54 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
It remains a cheap platform to exercise my own madness (i.e. replacing safety valve with bolt, etc).
I hope you didn't
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Old 07-30-2020, 07:24 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Thornton View Post
I hope you didn't
Hot rodder at heart. Yeah, I toyed around with Ruby after considering it a loss. Ran 78PSI (had to keep under 80 as out of pressure gauge #)..

Sounds fishy, I know - but that thing literally wheelied without rolling stock...insane I tells ya!

DO NOT DO THE ABOVE UNLESS YOU ARE PREPARED FOR THE WORST!!
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