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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
1. does anyone know where i can get loco lamps for steam engines please ?


2. also, how would you mount them to loco's ? glue ? bluetack ? etc


3. do any of you with layouts put telegraph poles on it and put the wires on ? only ask as 98% of layouts i have seen in magazines etc do not have telegraph poles or wires.
to make a layout look great, i think its brill that people weather their track, loco's, coaches, etc etc but do not put poles on the layout. i wonder if modellers think that in the steam days etc they had mobile phones to communicate with each other or all signalmen had to have ESP ????
 

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The owner of our local modelling shop was telling me there's a product from the dolls/miniatures range that's superior to bluetack and easier to remove. I'll try and get more concrete info for you Kodiak.
 

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or you can try 1st class trains. www.firstclasstrains.co.uk Just had a look at Express Models and that looks great.

I have a couple of pics of lights mounted on steam loco under what decoder to use in dcc section. I drilled holes in the loco body 0.5mm in dia soldered my wires on my LED lamp lights and fed it through the holes. From there you wire into decoder or to pick up's making sure you have the correct resistor.

The holes if you can see them



The light with 0.3mm single strand wire soldered on



Lights mounted held in place with superglue from the under side



Working light on Pullman to give you an idea of what it may look like. It is straight now! since I took picture.



Hope that gives you somewhere to start from.
 

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Re your question 3 about telegraph poles, you may find this topic Telegraph Poles of intererst.

I have seen an article in one of the model railway mags in the past year where an 'O' (7mm/ft) layout did have the wires modelled in such a way that they could be moved for storage or for the layout to be taken to an exhibition. I'll post details when I can locate the article.
In 4mm ('OO') layouts there are considerable problems:
(i) getting a thin enough 'wire' (thread may be used);
(ii) if you do get a thin wire/thread it is difficult to tension;
(iii) very likely to get damaged during use or other work on the layout;
which are the reasons why very few modellers attempt to include such fine detail. It probably is better done on permanent layouts that are not likely to move.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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QUOTE (John Webb @ 15 Aug 2007, 11:36) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>(ii) if you do get a thin wire/thread it is difficult to tension;
This is very true. The same problem presents itself when modelling overhead wire equipment.
It is very difficult to get thin materials to hang nicely in smaller scales because they simply don't have the mass needed to create their own tension. Cotton type threads are particularly bad at this, and also give a 'hairy' appearance because of the nature of their construction.
Adding artificial tension simply by pulling on the ends gives far too straight a result. Hanging wires are always installed with extra length to allow for contraction in cold weather, and hence always form a catenary (or hyperbolic cosine) curve.
There are only two candidates I have found which come close in my opinion, having looked into this on and off myself intermittently over many years.
The first was a very thin elastic thread, which came on a reel - and I've no idea what I did with it! I'm pretty sure it came from a sewing shop or similar.
The second is so-called micro-wire or micro-braid, which is a very small diameter rope wire - usually made of stainless steel, and hence rather expensive.
 

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for individual, or paired wires from poles I have in the past used the copper windings of a redundant electric motor.

these I have stretched out to remove kniks...carefully, as it is fragile stuff.....then carefully applied to pole terminals with a loop or two secured with a drop of Cyano.

to achieve the realistic 'droop' is easy, but needs really doing on a firm surface first.....simply carefully 'bend'the wire to the required droop before fixing.

however, it is fragile, will not withstand an errant finger...and needs colouring.

now, is it black, or is it green?

the issue of stringing wires is dubious.

when I did it, I modelled the US scene, and in urban areas, poles and wires abounded..it being a major iconic detail to my british eyes.

but, in the end, stringing wire was a waste of time......I had little time for repeated repairs, and not all the poles could be strung anyway, as access was needed for the ungodlyhandfromthesky.......switching being ackward even with the use of Kadees.

For some of the british telegraph poles often seen up to the early dayz of diesels, there were so any wires from each pole, the actual replication of this wire forest seems......... pointless.......??

the odd wire, to complete a highly-detailed scene, on the other hand, may be worth it?
 

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The product I was thinking about for a blue-tack replacement is made by Lemax and is called StickyMax. It's a vaselene looking material and about that colour too. It's not really suitable for porous surfaces like paper/timber as it is a little oily like bluetack. I'm going to be using it to attach cars to STVA flat wagons. I'm not sure about a loco's painted surface though.

Might be worth testing first. It only cost me AUD4.40 (GBP1.78).
 

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QUOTE (alastairq @ 15 Aug 2007, 19:39) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>...and needs colouring.

now, is it black, or is it green?

There are several factors in the colour. Seen from a train silouetted against the sky they appear black. Seen from above (ie from a bridge) they were originally a greeny colour where 'verdegrise' (copper carbonate) had formed on the surface of the bare wire. But in later years (and currently on some preserved railways) black plastic-covered wires were (or are) used, I think because this gives better protection from weather and improved insulation when tied to an insulator. Also allows the use of paired cables for better transmission and reduced interference without loosing the traditional 'single wire' appearence.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi all and sorry for the delay in thanking you all. Been a busy chappy.

right, sounds great the head and tail lamps that light up but i would hate to try and wire them up and melt the body work by accident ! so, i think just bog standard ones will do for me.

as for the telegraph lines, has anyone tried putting 2 in polystyrene and using cotton thread and using your missus's hairspray to make them stiffen like wire ?

just an idea and yes i understand that poles and wires may not be to all modellers liking but it does add some realisam to the layout.
 

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Re Telegraph poles and wires:
I've found an article which describes how these were fitted to a 7mm scale layout, using an American product for the 'wire' - actually a latex product which appears to have some elasticity so that the 'wires' can be lightly tensioned.

Look for "Telegraph poles in 7mm scale for Long Preston" by Jamie Guest, published in 'Railway Modeller' for July 2006. (Volume 57, No. 669, pages 418-421).

The American product is 'EZ Line'; the author of the above article got it via www.berkshirejunction.com - please note I haven't tried this site myself. He says that there is a thin version suitable for 4mm scale telegraph wires.

Hope this is of help.
Regards,
John Webb
 

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Paul Hamilton aka &quot;Lancashire Fusilier&quot;
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As an aside to the above post regarding the operating head code lights, would they be able to be used as the lamps for semaphore signals too? I am thinking of the LMS Adlake typ which to be honest in 00 scale is quite small, and if I didn't need to drill out a white metal casting myself, these ones from First Class may be the go. Thoughts anyone?
 

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QUOTE (Lancashire Fusilier @ 17 Mar 2008, 16:08) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>As an aside to the above post regarding the operating head code lights, would they be able to be used as the lamps for semaphore signals too? I am thinking of the LMS Adlake typ which to be honest in 00 scale is quite small, and if I didn't need to drill out a white metal casting myself, these ones from First Class may be the go. Thoughts anyone?

***I and most I know doing working semaphore lights are using 0603 SMT type LED's with ultra fine magnet wire soldered to them - this will fit inside the lamp if the drilling is done carefully. I have some images of signals fitted with them somethwere - meanwhile here is a photo against a ruler to show size - this brightness is too high by the way - I use 10~12k ohms on them when in a signal lamp.

I have these ex stock if you'd like to PM me

Richard
DCCconcepts
 

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I find this discussion somewhat strange.

As a German modeller (based in New Zealand) all my locomotives come pre equiped with lights, my semaphore signals are all lit and have slow motion motors on them.

Am I taking to much for granted?

John
 

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QUOTE (john woodall @ 17 Mar 2008, 07:57) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I find this discussion somewhat strange.

As a German modeller (based in New Zealand) all my locomotives come pre equiped with lights, my semaphore signals are all lit and have slow motion motors on them.

Am I taking to much for granted?

John

In a word: "Yes"!! In the UK there is no one selling 'off the shelf' complete 4mm scale signals of British prototypes complete with working signal lamp and operating motor that I am aware of. I can only guess at some of the reasons for this, not least that such an item would, I expect, be very expensive. It may be too that there are so many different prototypes to choose from that no single one would do. Even in BR days the Western Region stuck with lower-quadrant semaphores and there were still many other variations about from the 'Big Four' elsewhere on BR, many of which did not get changed other than when the area they were in was resignalled or closed down.

I must admit I am currently struggling with the construction of some working signals, but I quite enjoy it when I can find the time, or the loft is not too cold or .....

Regards,
John Webb
 

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QUOTE (John Webb @ 17 Mar 2008, 10:36) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It may be too that there are so many different prototypes to choose from that no single one would do.

That, as well as the fact that the UK market is much smaller is probably why.
 

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As far as locos are concerned , British steam engines lights were small paraffin handlamps only lit after dark. Even in the 1980s diesel loco marker lights were barely visible in daylight - to me models with working lights look unrealistically bright for this period

Semaphore signals were also lit by paraffin lamps behind coloured glazing, and only visible in darkness. Added to which there was such a vast variety of signalling practice from so many pregrouping companies in Britain , most of which survived to closure/resignalling with colourlights , and that the permutations and types of signals needed at each location would mean a lot of "bespoke" items , and it perhaps explains the lack of ready made working examples (Colourlights are available)

I seem to recall working semaphore signals came 2nd in last years MREMag poll , only to be greeted with the comment that the result was meaningless because it didn't say which signals , and the claim that it would be impossible to get modellers to agree on a single type for mass production . In other words , the result was kicked into touch. Personally, I'd say LMS/BR upper quadrants would suit most people , or at least be a very reasonable compromise...
 
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