ONLINE
STORE
"ASK THE BACH MAN"
FORUM
PARTS, SERVICE,
& INFORMATION
CATALOGS AND
BROCHURES

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
October 27, 2021, 12:22:15 AM
Home Help Search Login Register
News: Please read the Forum Code of Conduct   >>Click Here <<
+  Bachmann Message Board
|-+  Discussion Boards
| |-+  General Discussion
| | |-+  Street lamps and lighting
« previous next »
Pages: [1] Print
Author Topic: Street lamps and lighting  (Read 6530 times)
bigjoe11a
Guest
« on: June 08, 2012, 10:11:22 PM »

I just got my new EZ command Train Set and it doesn't come with an option on the power pack to wire lighting for street lamps and other lighting. The DC power packs come with one. So if the EZ Command power pack doesn't have one. How do I run track switches and lighting and other accessories for my layout.

I didn't want to buy a DC train set sense they cost like $50.00 or more and the DC power pack a lone cost like $60.00, Does any one have some ideas on this. I didn't want to spend a lot of money on this sense I paid $260.00 for the EZ Command train set with DCC.

Joe


Logged
Desertdweller

View Profile
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2012, 11:29:02 PM »

I have been down this street with my previous model railroad.  It featured full structure and street lighting, in addition to track signals.

All the structure and street lighting was incandescent.  The track signals used L.E.D.'s.

Even though it was a small N-scale railroad, maintaining the lighting system just got too much to deal with.  I decided not to repeat it on my current railroad.  It is now always "daytime".

If I were to attempt this again, I would definitely use some of the brighter L.E.D.'s instead of light bulbs.  A few dozen little incandescent bulbs throw off quite a bit of heat, and draw a lot of power.  You will definitely need a dedicated power pack to run these lights.  Using your main power pack for this will take a lot of power from your trains and switch machines.

You can paint the inside walls of your buildings black to prevent light leakage.  The black paint will absorb heat as well as light, so make sure your buildings are vented to let the heat escape.  Light glowing through the walls is not a bad effect if it is done evenly, and can simulate a building with exterior lighting.

I suggest you buy some terminal strips (sold by Radio Shack as "barrier strips").  Pre-wire these so every other terminal on one side of the strip is wired to the ones beyond the next one.  This is hard to describe.  Try numbering every terminal down one side, then wire all the even numbered ones together, and all the odd numbered ones together.  Run wires from the bottom two terminals on this side to your power source.  Then you can run two wires from each light to each pair of terminals on the other side.

Some lights can be wired in series to lower their brilliance.

Try a model railroad swap meet or garage sale to find the small power packs you will need.  You could also wire your system to the DC output, and use the rheostat as a dimmer switch, but the pack will heat up pretty fast if you try that,

I would also recommend you plug all powerpacks into a power strip, and use the switch on this strip to turn all power to your layout on or off.  Most power strips also contain a circuit breaker and a surge protector.

Good luck!

Les
Logged
NarrowMinded


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2012, 11:56:08 PM »

Hi,
Look around your house for old power packs for cell phones cordless tools Etc.

Cell phone plug in power packs or "Wallwarts" as some call them are usually in the 5vdc range but not much output, a really good wallwart which is common is the charger for kids ride on toys, most are 6vdc some are 12vdc others with higher voltages and more output amps are Laptop computer power power supplies, which are often 15vdc to 24vdc.

Remember the lighting is separate from the track/train controls and you are better off using s separate power supply,  the majority of Long time Model Railroaders use separate power supplies for accessories and Lighting.

NM-Jeff
Logged
Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


View Profile WWW
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2012, 12:02:45 AM »

Like Dessertdweller, I paint the insides of plastic buildings with black paint to reduce light leakage.  Unlike Dessertdweller, I then paint them white over the black to bounce the light around and reduce the size of the bulbs I need.

I like lighted buildings and my favourite time on my layout is dusk, enough light to see the buildings but not so bright as to over power their inside lighting.

Jim
Logged

Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.
Len

View Profile
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2012, 02:35:38 AM »

You can usually find 25-50 Watt 12VDC power supplies for outdoor/garden lighting on sale in the $30-$35 range. You'll have to light up a fair size model city to strain one of them. Use 14V bulbs and they won't get as hot as a 12V bulb, and you'll double the bulb life running them on 12V. Or you could use a 'gazillion' LED's and not strain it at all.

Len
Logged

If at first you don't succeed, throw it in the spare parts box.
Doneldon

View Profile
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2012, 03:50:31 AM »

Wall warts come in all voltages and with just about any amperage.  Between the unused wall warts and old power packs from I have no idea where, I have at least a dozen power supplies to choose from. I use smaller ones for LED runs and larger ones for incandescent. Like Len, I like to run incandescents a little under spec. They'll last just about forever that way.

By the way, turning your car's (automobile, not train cars) interior lights just a tiny amount below full brightness means you'll never have to disassemble your dashboard or stand on your head on your car's floor to change dash lights. And it works with expensive recessed lights and fancy chandelier bulbs in your home, too. Run just a couple of percent below full and they'll be immortal. I have recessed bulbs which were installed when we built our home in 1992 and they are all still operating. A few in places where I didn't install dimmers have been replaced two or three times. And, it's nice to be able to vary your lighting for mood, eating, watching TV, romance or whatever. The only limitation seems to be that few CFLs respond to reduced current; most won't light at all without full power. However, CFLs last a long time, anyway, using only a fraction of the electricity along the way.

Say, Bach-Man! I know much of this post isn't about Bachmann products but at least it's not about other manufacturers' model railroad goods!

                                                                                                                 -- D
Logged
bigjoe11a
Guest
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2012, 05:14:58 AM »

Thanks for the help. I guess I'll have to buy a DC train set with a power pack in it so I can run my lighting it. Thanks again.

Joe
Logged
NarrowMinded


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2012, 12:40:36 PM »

BigJoe,
I thinking your missing the point, if you already have the EZ-Command keep it.

Just find a 12v power supply (CHEAPER and BETTER then using the built in power supply)

there is No reason electrically that you must use power that come from your train controller.

As for your switches, buy DCC switches and you control them from the EZ-command, they have address' and are controlled like the locomotives using the buttons on the controller.

NM-Jeff
Logged
bigjoe11a
Guest
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2012, 05:44:36 PM »

Wow. I didn't know that. Thank you. I'll have to look for DCC Switches.
Logged
bigjoe11a
Guest
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2012, 06:23:17 PM »

Wow. I didn't know that. Thank you. I'll have to look for DCC Switches.


Update:
Guys those switches cost like $40.00 each. That's way too much for some thing like a switch.
 
Logged
rogertra


View Profile WWW
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2012, 06:32:02 PM »

Personally, I think that using your DCC throttle to control switches, turntables etc., is unrealistic.  Engineers do not line switches from the cab, or at least not generally.  The switch is always/mostly lined by someone else.  In my era, the engineer never left the cab to line any switch, that was someone Else's job.

All my switches will be hand operated right at the site of the switch and the turntable, while remotely controlled, will be controlled from it's own control box.

My staging through yard switches will be controlled from their own panel, one at each end and these will be electrically controlled as they are, in effect, "off stage".

But, of course, each to his own so do whatever turns your crank.

Logged

Jerrys HO
Guest
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2012, 06:37:40 PM »

I agree with rogertra, all my turnouts are controlled through switch throws. I find it faster and easier to work them.

Jerry
Logged
bigjoe11a
Guest
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2012, 08:02:38 PM »

Thanks Guys. It's just I wanted to start a hobby, I just didn't know that getting into train modeling was going to cost me a lot of money. How ever I didn't know there were switches that were DCC. So I guess I will have to watch for a deal on them. It does sound like it's a better way to go.

I could use the right side of the EZ Command center to control the switches where on the left side I could use that to control the engines. So it does make sense.

Thanks again
Logged
NarrowMinded


View Profile
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2012, 11:03:13 PM »

Check  Thefavoritespot.com and evilbay for deals on switches
Logged
Pages: [1] Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!