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Manual operation of dwarf signal using Peco turnouts

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  • Member since
    December 2015
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Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, January 20, 2020 10:31 AM

Todd it wasn't my video and I don't have Peco so I can't tell you which would work for you.

 

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Monday, January 20, 2020 10:22 AM

BigCityFreight, are you using DCC or DC.

The method Rich is using will only be effective with DCC where there is power on the rails all the time.

I have been using the slide switch method for manual turnouts for about 20 years now, in HO, yes you just search around for sub miniature switches with enough throw, and I make a small wire "V" spring to connect them to the throw bar.

I use DPDT switches and use the contacts for powering frogs, DC power routing and signaling.

I do not use PECO turnouts.......

Sheldon

    

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Posted by richhotrain on Monday, January 20, 2020 9:51 AM

BigCityFreight

Rich,

This is very interesting as almost all my switches are spring-loaded Peco insulfrogs. Do you have any pictures or diagrams of the wiring? Do you put one wire on each rail prior to the points? And where (and how many) wires go to the frog? Does it matter if I have feeder wires beyond the turnout (I don't like to rely on just the turnout to route power)?

Thanks

Todd 

Before deciding on signaling, I powered my Peco Insulfrogs on all three ends of each turnout. However, for rail power to work properly to the signals, I needed to gap the two ends of the turnout opposite the tail end. So, now, power only feeds into the tail end of each turnout. The other two ends of each turnout have insulated plastic rail joiners attached. But, because the Insulfrogs are power routing, feeders at only the tail end are sufficient.

I connect the green signal to the straight stock rail to indicate the straight through route. I connect the red signal to the curved stock rail to indicate the divergent route. The common wire(s) from the signal connects to the frog rails.

On my dwarf signals, there are three wires, a white, red and green. The single white wire is internally split to the two LEDs, so that single white wire connects to both frog rails by splitting the common wire. If your signals have two white wires, connect one to each frog rail.

One last thing, if any of your signals are bi-polar LEDs, add a diode to the green wire to avoid bleeding the red and green together resulting in an amber color. The diode will prevent backfeed, so that the green and red are distinct.

Rich

Alton Junction

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    January 2016
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Posted by BigCityFreight on Monday, January 20, 2020 8:32 AM

Henry,

This is exactly what I had heard about, though in my case I don't need to power the frogs - the switch would just flip the dwarf signal from green to red with the Peco switch handling everything else. I'm in HO not N, so I was wondering how you found a slide switch with the right amount of travel -- just trial and error?

Thanks

Todd

  • Member since
    January 2016
  • 36 posts
Posted by BigCityFreight on Monday, January 20, 2020 8:30 AM

Rich,

This is very interesting as almost all my switches are spring-loaded Peco insulfrogs. Do you have any pictures or diagrams of the wiring? Do you put one wire on each rail prior to the points? And where (and how many) wires go to the frog? Does it matter if I have feeder wires beyond the turnout (I don't like to rely on just the turnout to route power)?

Thanks

Todd

  • Member since
    December 2015
  • 6,957 posts
Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, January 20, 2020 8:06 AM

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 19,242 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Monday, January 20, 2020 7:21 AM

Peco turnouts, both Insulfrogs and Electrofrogs, can be used independent of any switching devices to control trackside signals by drawing power from the rails.

On my current layout, I do this with spring loaded Peco Insulfrogs, using no other switching device but my finger to flip the points. Dwarf signals and searchlight signals are wired to the stock rails and frog rails to determine polarity on my DCC layout.

Rich

Alton Junction

  • Member since
    December 2001
  • From: CA
  • 241 posts
Posted by bruce22 on Sunday, January 19, 2020 11:24 PM

Peco sell a PL13 turnout indicator that may be what you're looking for. It's designed to fit onto their switch machine but it can be adapted to be used without and installed underneath on your baseboard

  • Member since
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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, January 19, 2020 9:53 PM

Hi BigCityFreight,

One simple method is to use Tortoise switch machines. LEDs can be placed in series with the power supply to the Tortoise motor. No resistors are needed. You will need a +12v/-12v power supply to operate the Tortoise motors. As a bonus, the Tortoises can be used to control the polarity of the frog if you want to power the frogs.

Dave

 

  • Member since
    January 2016
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Manual operation of dwarf signal using Peco turnouts
Posted by BigCityFreight on Sunday, January 19, 2020 9:25 PM

I'm interested in having turnout direction indicated by a dwarf signal. I found some old posts where someone has mentioned using the action of the turnout bar on a Peco turnout to operate a surface mounted switch of some sort. But I could never find anymore information on this and was wondering if anyone has any idea how it could be done and what components you would need.

The turnouts are already mounted on the layout and ballasted, so I'm looking for something with minimal disruption. I'm guessing the dwarf signal would be powered to green by default, and the turnout being thrown would move the throw bar into contact with a switch of some sort that would change the signal to red. Any information or guidance on how this might be accomplished is appreciated.

Thanks

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