Friday, September 17, 2021

Wollar Triple Bracket Home Signal Control

Two posts ago I installed a triple bracket signal to act as the Home for Wollar station and yard. As I had some access difficulties if I wanted to install two normal bracket signals, I opted for the triple bracket.

The post was mainly about the small sleeper built retaining wall that I needed to make and install to retain the existing scenery where the triple bracket had to go.

This time I want to show what I did about controlling the triple bracket and also how I solved the visibility issue. The triple bracket was placed on the curve leading into Wollar and as such the arms were not easily visible to determine which track was set up for the train entering the yard.

As mentioned in the earlier post I cut the triple bellcrank style mechanism away and replaced it with one of my triple linear servo mechanisms by glueing it to the underside of the existing triple bracket base.

I then set up three Tam Valley Depot Singlet II servo control boards where I could access them from the front of the layout.

I extended a LED from each Singlet II to the front of the layout fascia and mounted the LEDs in a 3D printed box that showed which track each LED related to. The LEDs are bi-colour so show red or green depending on the signal arm position.

Here is the box with LEDs in place, working and showing green for the Main line.

Note the Accessory numbers A54, A55 and A56 as well as the L, M and BP written on the Singlet IIs with a white fine point paint pen. The L stands for Loop, the M stands for Main and the BP stands for the Back Platform track. Strangely, the Back Platform track is actually at the front of the layout. It is the track that the Cassilis branch trains arrive and depart from.

At the moment the triple signals can be operated by the buttons on the Singlet II control board or by accessory commands. The intent is to use an NCE Mini-Panel to change the appropriate signal arms based on the point levers (control panel switches). There is an Accept lever (switch) that can put all triple bracket arms to Stop.

So, the points will be set first, then the Accept lever will be set to allow entry and the appropriate signal arm will change to clear. The responding LED will show Green on the indicator box on the layout fascia.

Incidentally, the gap between the inner layout frame with the Singlet IIs and the outer piece of layout frame where the indicator box is mounted can now be filled with a piece of baseboard and the scenery will be extended down from the road to the front of the layout.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Small Signal Box Build

 I have a small NSWGR signal box meant for platforms on my Signals Branch Shapeways shop. The signal box is described as a 'Cheap Platform Signal Box'and one look at it and you can see why the NSWGR accountants must have loved it.

Links are here for those who may be interested.

Cheap Platform Signal Box available in Versatile Plastic or Fine Detail Plastic.

Detail parts for the Cheap Signal Box, door, windows, telegraph wire insulators, water tank and downpipe.

I have several of these signal boxes and I chose a Shapeways Versatile Plastic version to use as the basis for a junction signal box for the coal mine branch near Wollar. Now, as this is a platform version I needed to build a supporting structure for it.

Once again, I turned to my computer and ran Sketchup to design a corrugated iron lower supporting section. As part of the build, I also designed a flat base for the signal box to sit on. Extra parts were designed as well, these being a platform and steps, bellcrank and signal wire wheels for the area between the signal box and the track. I already had a small water tank designed so this came into the build but I needed a different downpipe from the gutter to the water tank and a water tank tap as well.

The corrugated iron support structure and the base were printed in PLA on my filament printer and the other small parts listed above were printed on my resin DLP printer.

Here are a few photos of the finished signal box. Overall I am quite happy with it and it is now put in place at the junction with appropriate scenery materials blending it into the scene.