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Old 02-04-2020, 06:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Track Signal Light Stand

Hello everyone,

I do apologize if this has been posted before. I really have done some searching and I'm not seeing what it is I seek.

I would like to try my hand at making a simple track signal light. I'm quite handy with electronics...that part doesn't concern me at all but from the model building aspect, I've never done anything quite like it. I would like to make a simple red light/green light on my little display. I'll activate it with IR detectors and get a 555 timer and some relays and other components to drive the LEDs but the model making part is where I fall short.

I've read where people are constructing these kinds of things but being really green, I was hoping to see a tutorial or some additional depth in the model building side of it. Dimension for the poles and suggestions on material all would be really helpful. Does anyone know of a website or a posting where I could find a little more info? Having no experience my expectations are really quite realistic and I really don't need something that looks 100% realistic but I would like something that looks reasonably passable.

I thank you all in advance for any suggestions you might have.
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Old 02-04-2020, 06:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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For pole-mounted signal lights, I use a piece of brass tube painted grey with a brass washer, painted black, soldered to the top for the "target." A piece of brass tube, also painted black, is soldered in the target and holds a red/green (common anode) LED. The ladder is a piece of 1/2" hardward cloth (galvanized mesh) cut to width/length.

You can see one next to Casey Joan on the left:



My other type is a low mount signal. Again I use a brass tube and bi-directional LED. In this case I use a brass fender washer soldered to a short pole. The concrete stand is hydraulic cement cast in a small "Dixie" cup.

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Old 02-04-2020, 06:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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This is wonderful. Can you tell me roughly how tall that light stand is? I don't have a turtle for scale of size reference :-)
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Old 02-04-2020, 08:10 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Todd;

Your masts must be sturdily mounted. Otherwise, I would think that a 1:1 tortoise could knock them a-kilter or even knock them down. Nice photo.

Regards, David Meashey
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Old 02-04-2020, 08:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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One more question if you don't mind. The shield or cover that you have around the LEDs. what is it you're using there?

I can see now that this is an artistic endeavor supported by a collection of well honed skills. Note to self..accept the failures as part of the skill development.

Once again, I thank you.
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Old 02-04-2020, 09:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by punkin View Post
This is wonderful. Can you tell me roughly how tall that light stand is? I don't have a turtle for scale of size reference :-)
Maybe about 8" tall.
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Old 02-04-2020, 09:38 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by punkin View Post
One more question if you don't mind. The shield or cover that you have around the LEDs. what is it you're using there?

I can see now that this is an artistic endeavor supported by a collection of well honed skills. Note to self..accept the failures as part of the skill development.

Once again, I thank you.
Short piece of brass tube with one side ground to a slant. Brass is nice becuae you can solder the whole thing together, though the brass fender washers take a big iron.
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Old 02-05-2020, 12:52 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Hobby Lobby here I come.

I thank you for the suggestions.
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Old 02-05-2020, 07:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The small hand held butane torches (about 6 inches tall) are great for soldering heavier material or larger pieces. Try Home Depot or Harbor Freight.
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