I think Brian is refering to a servo used in a Radio Controlled model, (but please correct me if Im wrong Brian)
For my layout I think I will start with wire in tube point control then upgrade to motors as money allows.
Ron's post above links to a site that uses Radio Contro servo motors.
If you are in the UK, there are several people doing something similar here; they were mentioned last year I think in the Tracks, Layouts, Scenery section. Try using the 'Search' facility of the Forum (right-hand side of header) - that may bring them up for you.
Thanks everyone for the replies. Its all got a bit too deep for this newbie, all I really wanted to know was if there were any alternatives to the Hornby and Peco surface mounted point motors. (I didnt really want slow-acting or radio controlled etc.) It seems not, and since I am not confident with either product, I will persevere with under-board motors, even though it means cutting holes in places a man of my age should never have to go.
Shane, you can mount the large Peco/Hornby motors underneath without the big hole , Peco motor instructions show you how or even on top using PL12. With this, a building can be fitted over the top of the motor similar to the Hornby Unit R8015 http://www.hornby.com/search.html?q=r8015
Have not tried the new Hornby surface mounted motor but I am happy with the Peco unit.
I have bought 4 peco surface mount point motors and 2 have disintegrated in weeks. The top piece of plastic has flicked off and the copper coil underneath is corroded and swollen. I have not used solvent, glue or paints anywhere near these as they are in a plywood totally unscenicked fiddle yard. I am fussy about air quality around my railway due to lung problems.
Perplexed of Perth
A word of caution about using standard radio control servos. They cannot be used as supplied as they need an electronic driver circuit (to take the place of the radio control equipment). There are some manufacturers who make such circuits and some designs are available on the internet.
Back when I was very young, someone produced a very useful 1:1 rocking lever assembly that was mounted in a half inch hole in the baseboard (I still have a couple somewhere). You could use a surface mount point motor or tube and wire underneath and have an unobtrusive connection to the turnout on the upper surface. Does anyone know if such a thing is still available?
Guagemaster also make point motor similar to the peco motor. A large number of my point motors are above board hidden in buildings, embankments etc. Sometimes they are remote from the point. I use peco above board mounts together with model aircraft cranks rods and tubing. I also prefer guagemaster since 1) they have a nice switch built into them and 2) when I have to use an underboard mounting the pins are much longer, 3) there is a little more room to elongate the mounting hole so that correct alignment is easier
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