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Point Motors

15632 Views 53 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  steamrailuk
N Scale:
Point motors are my frightener and always have been. They are big, noisy and power hungry, but most they are expensive. Not when buying one or two but when buying 30-40 or more and one doesn't even get to see them, under the board. If you want something simpler and neater on top the price doubles. There rarely seems to be more than a penny or two discount for quantity.

This is probably a stupid post but I have wracked my brain trying to find an alternative. I cannot believe that nobody has found an answer to one point one solenoid.
It is easy for one switch to operate many, but not the other way round. It spoils the cost estimate prepared for the wife, when one forgets to factor the solenoids in...

Has anybody come up with anything at all, other than finger pressure.

Yes; I know I am leaving myself open here.
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Nothing more to be said then. I look forward to much more help from you guys.
Already had success from the workbench area with cog wheels.
I anticipate needing quite a bit as a newbie to railways, I don't even know which side of the tracks we drive on in UK, left or right

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Wiggy, Its all ok, I'm an engineer too - doesn't mean a thing I've discovered. Most of the good ideas in my house come from my wife - and I will continue to credit them in that way too (if I know what's good for me!)
Ah , Donone ; look what you have ! New ideas , communication ,and the polite exchange and debate of ideas .

Bravo Donone !

I have just popped in and had a quick flick through , haven't the time at the moment.

I shall return.

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Look forward to your return Rowan; Hopefully you will bring something good to the table!
I know you dont want a manual system but maybe others do so I'll just throw in the Blue Point turnout controller .a US made product that provides manual control via push pull rod or a wire like a choke control (remember those) and includes a built in switch for the electrics .Attaches under the baseboard and gives a nice positive click when engaged .Very useful for Shinohara and Tillig track where no locking is built in.Works on most scales ,great for walk round layouts .
I've seen these before just couldn't remember what they were called or where they were!!

Thanks for the link!

I just think they're too expensive, for a manual point operation!

Font Gas Parallel Wood Tire

More info HERE


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QUOTE (wiggy25 @ 9 Oct 2008, 15:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I've seen these before just couldn't remember what they were called or where they were!!

Thanks for the link!

I just think they're too expensive, for a manual point operation!

View attachment 812

More info HERE
I agree they are expensive I got mine as I am unlikely to build a large layout in terms of actual trackage so its not too bad .its an elegant solution to that kind of problem but not for a large mainline layout .I dont want to get involved in electric operated points .I got them to operate SMP points .
I was thinking of using these but coupled with a memory wire actuator (which is actually quite inexpensive actually) and then you have a quality point motor I reckon which is totally silent, robust and also repeatable across multiple installs.
Not having used any of this wire type stuff rossi, I find it difficult to see how the movement can be so accurate as to not cause overrun in either direction. Is the inner and outer difference precisely the movement the point requires.
It is possible to save money by using some manual points, so it is of interest.
To see memory wire in action on signals and turnout see
What a good thread with a heap of information.

Memory wire sounds good and inexpensive. I really liked the thought that went into your disk idea Paul, food for thought in this and other applications.

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Too kind, it was minutes of thought only, needs more refinement and I think that a hybrid of Richard's idea would be the best solution however a total memory wire solution could well be the go.
I've "bin lookin" around for any/ all ideas on accuation of points.With the ideas , links that have come out of this thread it has built on information I received out of this thread, and this thread ,

I like Donone's idea in starting the thread of what other ways there are of doing things.
Lots of new stuff ; to me, sharing the ideas, where we are all richer.

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QUOTE (Robert Stokes @ 5 Oct 2008, 11:41) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Sorry for coming to this thread rather late. I haven't read every word of every reply so I hope I'm not repeating something.

There is a very cheap and simple method, if your points are not too far from the baseboard edge, which I used on a previous layout. You fashion a bit of strong wire (I used old bicycle spokes) into a long L shape. The short part comes up through the board into the point tie-bar. You will need to file it down to the correct diameter for the last couple of mm.

The long part runs under the baseboard in guides made from staples or U-shaped tacks. Adjust its length so that it comes through the baseboard edging a short way. you can glue some sort of small knob on the end to push and pull.

This method was effective and cost practically nothing. Its only drawback is that you can't easily operate two points at the same time. Also, you can't easily collect the operating wires together.

I was thinking of something very similar to that idea that I've seen on a Model Railway programme. The layout I saw used thin copper tubing with piano wire running through it to the points; set just below the surface of the board and operated by levers at the edge of the board, which in this case were disguised as crates to hide them.

Hope this is helpful and may be a possible solution depending on the design of your layout.
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