Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

Buffer Stop
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2021 3:10 pm
Contact:

Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#1

Post by Buffer Stop »

Newbie first post!

Having got my baseboard painted I shall soon be putting my track layout in place, and I would appreciate a little help/guidance in the use of Hornby R047 on/off switches and R618 isolating track sections please.

I have five sidings which will incorporate R618 tack sections, along with decoupling ramps, the idea being that a loco pulls into the siding, is decoupled from what it’s pulling, and then is moved past the R618 where it can be isolated, allowing me to shunt stuff around with another loco.

I have two issues to solve. One I think is straightforward, the other perhaps a little more tricky.

The first issue is that the cables bundled with the R047 switches are too short. I think that that’s an easy fix. By using some Hornby X8011 pins (or the Gaugemaster GM14 equivalent, as it seems that the X8011s have been discontinued) I can make up cables to the length that I need.

The second issue is where I want to be clever. I’d like to incorporate an LED somewhere at the switch end of things such that when the siding receives power (I’m using analogue, not DCC) and the switch is in the closed position, the LED lights-up to identify the correct switch to use. I like the idea that the R047 switches can be banked together, but I’m not 100% wedded to them. If there’s something else out there that makes life easy, after all the R047 is just a simple on-off switch, then I’m up for that and I can sell the R047s, which are still sealed in their bags. My current thinking is some sort of box in which I’ll mount the switches, which will allow me to use surface-mounted LEDs. I can’t see why this shouldn’t be possible. The LED current draw should be low, assuming that I select the correct components. Has anyone else tried this please? Am I missing something really obvious here? Is there something out there more suited to the task? The only issue that springs to mind thus far is that LED brightness will be governed by the amount of power being fed to the track, which given shunting operations, might be quite low. I can find plenty of surface-mounted switches with 12V LEDs embedded in them via a Google search, which at face value, seem ideal. However they all seem to have 3 connecting pins, and I only need 2.

Apologies if this topic has been aired before or I’ve posted in the wrong forum.

TIA

Clem
Chuffchuff
Posts: 99
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2019 9:23 pm
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#2

Post by Chuffchuff »

Some useful information on https://www.brian-lambert.co.uk/Electrical_Page_1.html

Page 3. https://www.brian-lambert.co.uk/Electrical-Page-3.html Has details of wiring LEDs at the bottom of the page.

I think you will be needing double pole switches where one side connects the train wiring and other pole is controlling a separate supply for LEDs.

The whole matter gets more interesting if you add electric points which can have there own supplementary switches that can control signals , etc.

Rgds

Edit. Ref to page 3 added
User avatar
Brian
Site Admin
Posts: 1639
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:49 pm
Location: SE Kent
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#3

Post by Brian »

Personally,I would not use any Hornby lever switches. Instead I would opt for toggle switches, mainly because of the cost of all Hornby levers v toggle switches and the neatness a toggle switch offers and the physical size of the Hornby levers!

A simple ON/ON DPDT toggle switch can be as little as £0.79 ish.https://www.bitsbox.co.uk/index.php?mai ... ts_id=3175 It can also be used as a On/Off switch too. Plus it gives two separate sets of contacts.
Image << Click the Icon to go to my website
Buffer Stop
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2021 3:10 pm
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#4

Post by Buffer Stop »

Thanks for the replies. I did think that it wouldn’t be straightforward. I’ll check out the links kindly posted.

One other thing did occur to me: the LED would only be illuminated for the period that the track section has power. Once the points to the siding are closed (or is that open?) the LED will go out even if the associated switch is closed. However, as the LED is only there to (initially) indicate which switch to use, no biggie in the grand scheme of things.
User avatar
darkscot
Posts: 339
Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2020 9:03 am
Location: West Yorkshire
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#5

Post by darkscot »

You may want to consider a point position indicator?
http://www.blocksignalling.co.uk/index. ... or-ppi4-dc
Many times the wrong train took me to the right place.
User avatar
darkscot
Posts: 339
Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2020 9:03 am
Location: West Yorkshire
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#6

Post by darkscot »

Brian wrote: Wed Jul 28, 2021 10:29 pm ...and the neatness a toggle switch offers and the physical size of the Hornby levers!
I think there are those that like the large size of the Hornby levers, they sort of mimic the levers in a real signal box. They wouldn't be my choice either though and of the two options I would favour the toggle switches. In the past I have used the 'electric pencil' method, I found it neater, easier to wire up and quicker to use. This time though I am using a digital switch decoder to operate the solenoids and controlling that from my multiMAUS handset.
Many times the wrong train took me to the right place.
Buffer Stop
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2021 3:10 pm
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#7

Post by Buffer Stop »

Thanks once again for the kind replies. A lot of this is very new to me, and it's going to take time to understand all of this new stuff. Things have moved on a lot since my last foray into railway modelling when I was a small boy, 55+ years ago.

My local model shop suggested starting with a DC/analogue setup, get the track basics sorted along with a decent baseboard, get into the modelling, and, as I (and my wife, who's a passenger with me here) get more proficient, move onto more advanced stuff like DCC/automation and so forth. The locos that I currently have are non-DCC, and so for now, want to keep things simple, as much as I really want an all-signing and dancing setup from day one. There really is so much to get to grips with!

I found Brian's web pages really helpful. He seems a pretty clever guy, and there's a lot to digest there. As for the R047 switches, I'm not bothered if I use something more compact. I can put together a box to bank some SPST switches using terminal blocks as connectors (or soldering), so any recommendations there would be helpful. My main stumbling block seems to be the 3-pin LED 12V switches that are available. I only have a simple Gaugemaster controller at present, giving a 12 DC track feed and a 16V AC accessory feed, which I was planning on using for point switches.
User avatar
Brian
Site Admin
Posts: 1639
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:49 pm
Location: SE Kent
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#8

Post by Brian »

Hi
Deepening on point motors to be used, if solinoid, then you need to use sprung to centre off switches which are frequently called (On)-Off-(On) where the bracketed (On) cant remain in that position once the switches lever is released. These are either SPDT or DPDT types. :D Never use On/On or On/Off switches with solinoid motors, as the motors coil will burn out if power is left on the coil for more than a few seconds.
Image << Click the Icon to go to my website
Buffer Stop
Posts: 86
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2021 3:10 pm
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#9

Post by Buffer Stop »

So, the layout is down and after I’ve had a go with track pins, I need to wire-up the R618s to the R047 switches. I have some pins, Gaugemaster GM14, which seem to be the same as Hornby X8011, but I’m struggling to work out what wire/cable to use. I can’t find out what gauge cables the pins will accept, and I’m not sure whether to crimp the ends or solder. Any insights would be gratefully received!
User avatar
Brian
Site Admin
Posts: 1639
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:49 pm
Location: SE Kent
Contact:

Re: Being clever with Hornby R047 switches and R618 isolating track

#10

Post by Brian »

For Track feeds on a DC layout then 7/0.2mm equipment wire will be fine.
The Hornby wire end pins are crimped, but can be carefully fitted with the aid of a pair of long nose pliers or as you suggest soldering the wire to the pin then bending over the pins tabs with pliers. Soldering will make the very best connection.
Image << Click the Icon to go to my website
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests