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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been building layouts both club and private for some time now and have always used Peco Code 100 Streamline. The time has now come for a new layout and the decision has been made to go for more scale appearance and use SMP Scaleway track and points. The making of the points are not a problem (I am using the plastic based kits) the set up for operating them is. With Peco you have a locking spring mechanism but with SMP you don't, I am undecided whether to use electric or manual for operation but need advice on how to ensure the blades stay where I want them.

Joss
 

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This should not be a problem with motor-drive units (ie Tortoises and Fulgarex) which will lod the blades in place. Solenoids are potentialy a bit rough for handbuilt points, especially plastic based ones, and I'm not familiar with locking methods for manual point operation
 

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Best advice I can give is to go for motorised such as Lemaco, Fulgerex or Tortoise (there are others). They will be much kinder to your points, have a more realistic action & no nasty CDU's.

They are more expensive, but if you require switching for live frogs, interlocking & so on they are around the same price as the Peco Museum Piece by the time you have added the cost of the adaptor base & extra switches.

Hope this helps.

BTW - welcome to the forum.
 

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You might be able to find second-hand H&M (Hamnett and Morgan) solenoid motors (type 'SM3') available at swap-meets, toy fairs, exhibition second-hans stalls etc. They have their own metal mounting frame for above or under-baseboard mounting. In the latter case there was a crank on a rod to fit the motor and bring the operation above the baseboard for connection to a point; but not all available second-hand have these with them.
More to the point you raise these motors have a locking mechanism built into the motor as part of the one-pole change-over switch. So they can even switch point frogs for you with no extra expense. If linked to the point with an 'Omega' loop you can be certain of the point being held firmly at either end of its travel.
But like all solenoids they do 'clunk' rather.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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Like John Webb, I prefere the H&M solenoid motors, used them for years on both Peco and SMP pointwork and never had any problems with them. Another bonus is they can be bought quite cheap at exhibitions and swap meets, much better too than the rough Peco ones.
The disadvantage is that the built in switch contacts are poor, I don't use these. I use seperate micro switches or another method of switching frogs. (More details on the link below)

Here is a link to a page on my web site that shows how I use them... http://www.frankcollins.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/projects.htm

Hope this helps.
regards
Frank
 

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The only problem I've had with H&M switches is if the previous owner damaged them, but the motors are easily dismantled for repairs. After that a bit of switch cleaner and very light lubrication seems to keep them running.
Regards,
John Webb
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Many thanks to all for your suggestions, I am very grateful for the prompt help given to a first timer on this forum you have all given me food for thought. Now to put something into practice and maybe I will be able to help someone else in the future.

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If you want to go with solenoid type then try Seep (available at Gaugemaster) I think they do 3 types a basic , one with a switch and a latching type very cheap and reliable but for me I would go Tortoise.

Shaun
 

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QUOTE (Joss @ 6 Apr 2007, 15:53) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I have been building layouts both club and private for some time now and have always used Peco Code 100 Streamline. The time has now come for a new layout and the decision has been made to go for more scale appearance
Hi Joss,

If you are looking for better 00 track appearance (and better running) you might be interested in 00-SF, which uses narrower flangeways with existing rolling stock by reducing the track gauge to 16.2mm. This idea has been around for years as "EM minus 2" but has recently been gaining greater interest with the improvements in RTR rolling stock. For more information and other users, see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/00-SF.

regards,

Martin.
 

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It would be a shame, having gone for SMP track, to spoil it with solonoid "snap" type point motors.
Slow motion, stall motor devices like those mentioned above would be much better.
I would choose Tortoise even though they are the more expensive option. You get what you pay for at the end of the day.
Don't pay more than £10 each for them though! A lot of retailers want a lot more (up to £12.99).
There are places to obtain them at a reasonable price and sometimes a discount for multiple purchases.
 
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