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wiring LED signal light to Tortoise machine

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  • Member since
    January 2002
  • From: Loudonville, NY
  • 759 posts
wiring LED signal light to Tortoise machine
Posted by Benjamin Maggi on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 7:45 AM

I purchased one of the inexpensive LED railroad searchlight signals from EBay. The listing says that the LEDs have resistors to allow them to be powered with 12-16v DC, and I have a 12v power source so I should be set.

It is a single-target signal that shows RED with one polarity and GREEN with the other. There are three wires coming out, and the seller indicates that this is wired for COMMON ANODE.

How should I wire this up to a Tortoise switch machine so that when the turnout is thrown via a DPDT switch the signal will display green for one route and red for the other? 

Thanks. 

Modeling the D&H in 1984: http://dandhcoloniemain.blogspot.com/

  • Member since
    February 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 29,842 posts
Posted by rrinker on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 8:19 AM

  With a 3 wire LED, you need a 12V power supply. If they are common anode signals, that means the common is +, so connect the common wire fromt he LEDs to the power supply +. Connect toe - of the power supply to one of the Tortoise switch terminals - 4 or 5. Your other two LED wires go to eaither 2 and 3, or 6 and 7 depending on if the power supply is connected to 4 or 5.

 If the wrong color LED lights based on turnout position, flip the LED wires at the Tortoise.

                                      --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    January 2002
  • From: Loudonville, NY
  • 759 posts
Posted by Benjamin Maggi on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 10:23 AM

Can I assume that contacts 2/4/6 are one side of the switch, and 3/5/7 are the other side. Meaning, I should use one side or the other for the three connections?

Thank you Randy. I will try that. 

Modeling the D&H in 1984: http://dandhcoloniemain.blogspot.com/

  • Member since
    February 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 29,842 posts
Posted by rrinker on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 5:35 PM

2-3-4 are one switch, with 4 being the center and 2 and 3 being the contacts. In one position, 2 and 4 connect, when the Tortoise moves the other way, 3 and 4 connect.

The other pair is 5-6-7, with 5 being the common, and the connection being 5-6 or 5-7 depending on which way the Tortoise is pointing.

The sheet that comes with them has the diagram.

                                    --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    July 2009
  • From: somerset, nj
  • 3,444 posts
Posted by gregc on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 5:02 AM

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

  • Member since
    February 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 29,842 posts
Posted by rrinker on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 8:17 AM

 Just reverse the + and - in the lower right hand corner - the OP said the signals are common anode.

                                       --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    January 2002
  • From: Loudonville, NY
  • 759 posts
Posted by Benjamin Maggi on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 9:54 AM

Thank you. That diagram will be very useful (with the polarity reversed in the lower corner).

Ben

Modeling the D&H in 1984: http://dandhcoloniemain.blogspot.com/

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