Tuesday 14 August 2007

Turnout Operation

I decided to keep the turnout operation simple. In general I dislike motor operation partly because of noise but also because of the need for extra wiring. To me this is an added complication and more that could go wrong. I prefer mechanical operation and for Marks Quay I have used wire in tube. Some years ago I bought a starter pack from Cornrad Controls and had never used it, so this was my chance.

You will have seen the photo of the tie bar from the previous blog and I cut a groove in the baseboard to accommodate it. Likewise I cut a groove from the end of the tie bar to the edge of the baseboard where I mounted a slider switch to handle the movement of the switch blades and the electrical switching of the turnout. In the groove I laid the tube making allowance for an OMEGA loop. This is quite large and I let it hang down through a slot in the base board.

In one case, I had to add some additional wood to mount the switch to but this will be behind the back scene. One of the joys of not planning ahead! I won't detail the electrical side of this now as I will cover it later when I write about the wiring of the layout.

To connect the turnout operating wire to the switch I drilled a hole in the toggle and passed the wire through this. To lock the wire I used the metal part of electrical terminal blocks cut in half as these already have screws fitted, saving me the work of making them. I notice from the photo that one has split, and will require replacement.

This is not a new method of turnout control but one that I feel can be reliable and easy to use. The tubes are held into the grooves with some silicone sealant that I had to hand but any glue would have done.

I had the slider switches and control wire/tube in my bits box so still no more expenditure!

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