Saturday, January 3, 2015

3D Printed Signal Pictures

I  have received a comment about the difficulty of seeing the signals on the very light coloured computer rendition of the signals on my Shapeways shop. Unfortunately I have no control over this as it is part of the Shapeways system. Also there is no zoom which is annoying.

Here are a couple of photos of a distant signal in its raw as received state. Sorry but this is the best I have been able to do, it is very hard to photograph a white object.

Distant Signal Side View

Distant Signal Front View
The 'T' shaped part at the bottom is the main operating crank that is to be cut off the short sprue at the top, placed on the small post behind it and held in place with a small screw (see assembly instructions on the Signals Branch blog).

There is a spare counterweight lever(s) printed on the base of all signals, I left them there from my pilot model just in case the Frosted Ultra Detail ones were fragile but so far they seem to work fine.

Here is a picture of the details parts without the handling protection enclosing framework. The material shows as being clear but it has yet to be rinsed in some acetone to remove a light oil that is used by Shapeways to remove some waxy supporting material from the printing process. Once rinsed in acetone the material goes whitish.

Signal Detail Parts
Here is a view of a completed bracket signal (an early version) showing the operating mechanism below. As you can see from the pictures the main structure of the operating mechanism is printed as part of the signal. The mechanism is designed to fit in a 20mm (single arm posts) or a 22mm (multiple arm post) hole in the baseboard. The mechanism has also been designed to be within the depth of a baseboard construction of 13mm board plus 2" x 1" (what is that in mm?) frame.

Early Version Bracket Signal
The silver screws adjust the throw of the signal arms and the large operating crank absorbs the mechanical throw protecting the delicate signal arms and rods above. Please note that the heads of the two silver screws interfere with each other so I suggest the use of 8BA or 2-56 screws (see the assembly instructions for more detail). I have used some of those black acetal plastic Kadee screws with success (and I have a heap collected won the years).

Here is a picture showing a two arm outer home and distant signal and two Tam Valley servo motors mounted underneath the baseboard. I like the Tam Valley Singlet servos as they are relatively cheap, include a DCC accessory decoder on the control board, have an auto adjusting feature for the throw and are easy to install.

Two Servo Motors Driving Two Signal Arms
Here is a video just to show that it works.

And another video showing the down loop starter at Wollar, yes I know some like to call it an inner home or some such.... ;-)

Til next time.


Peter said...

Geez Ray you make it hard I didt know what to watch the 57 or the signal !! nice vid as always

Ian Phemister said...

Hi Ray,
Is there an option for ordering the posts in the Frosted Ultra? Just for us pedantic few that are not concerned about the flexibility but want the little extra fidelity?