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July 03, 2022, 01:42:40 PM
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Author Topic: Lighting wire and paint for passenger cars  (Read 685 times)
Terry Toenges


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« on: May 03, 2022, 11:42:07 PM »

I'm going to try to get my Santa Fe heavyweight passenger cars lit up. I just got the interiors for them. I am buying some ESU lighting strips.
I will need some wire to run to the wipers. What gauge wire would those be? The short leads coming off the lighting strip are very small gauge wire. The wires that are connected to the red light are thicker than the two power wires. I'm cutting the red lights off and they won't be used.

« Last Edit: May 07, 2022, 01:28:39 PM by Terry Toenges » Logged

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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2022, 10:29:40 AM »

I don't have anywhere down here to buy little wire so I  have to order it on-line. I don't do a lot of electrical stuff.
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jonathan


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« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2022, 12:27:48 PM »

Terry,

Congrats on the project. I lit my heavy-weights as well.

For really small gage wire, I like to use old electronic equipment.  There always seems to be that stuff just laying around.  Perhaps you have an old mouse or USB connectors?  That kind of wire is stranded and very flexible. Just a thought.  Smiley

Regards,

Jonathan
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2022, 04:30:25 PM »

That's a thought. I don't know if I have anything like that laying around. In looking around on line I'm seeing like 22 gauge to 36 gauge in small stuff. It's hard to tell without being able to actually look it in person. I'll have to drill holes to run wires so I don't want it too big. Since I have 8 cars to do, I'll need quite a bit of it.
The power leads at at one end of the light strips so I'll have to run at least one long wire to the far end of the car.
I ordered some long wipers for the trucks. I now see that the truck screws are off set and not in the center so I'm not sure about the wipers.
I'm contemplating getting some conductive tape and seeing what I can do with that. Maybe solder the light wires to pieces of the tape and glue them to ceiling. Then run pieces of metal or stiff wires up inside the car interior bathrooms so they contact the roof tape when the bodies are put on. On the bottom, I could solder the pick up wires to tape and put it on the floor. When I set the interior in, the bathroom wire will contact the floor tape. When I put the body on, the ceiling tape will contact the top of the bathroom wire.
I'm thinking of doing it this way so I can easily remove the body if one of the light strip goes bad.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2022, 01:54:25 PM »

The plan for the passenger cars. I have some of the lights ordered. I'm going with the ESU light strips with the powerpacks.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2022, 10:52:50 PM »


Soo... When you have your passenger cars apart to work on them and their chassis are just sitting there AND you have a bunch of dinosaurs and Flintstone stuff from Dinosaurland, what do you do? You make your own Dinosaur Train. The locos are Bachmann DCC 4-4-0's. The cars are Athearn passenger car chassis. I'm working on the interiors of the cars.
The video is here -
https://youtu.be/AoFiX_5ma9Y
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2022, 11:25:36 PM »

They got off at Rose Rock.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2022, 04:15:16 PM »

I got some of the ESU light strips yesterday. I stuck a strip up temporarily too see how it would look. It's not wired yet. I hung the wires out the door and hooked them to a 9 volt battery. I love it.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2022, 03:00:30 AM »

Has anyone used these ESU power packs? I guess they are like capacitors to keep the lighting constant. I want to use them with the passenger car light strips and want to know if they get hot. I was going to put them down in the belly (the depression in the chassis) and run the flat copper tape under the interior to the power pack then back out to the wiper. I don't want the melt anything. If they get hot, maybe I could drill some holes in the ends of the belly (where they wouldn't be visible) to cool it off

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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2022, 01:48:16 AM »

I found my answer. There are two solder pads on the light strip for the power pack that it has to be connected to.
I can solder it directly to the strip or use wire from the pack to the strip.
If I use wires, I have to figure out where to locate the pack in the interior and how to get it there when I put the body on unless I use pretty long wires to place it somewhere, then put the body on. Then I have long wires hanging down somewhere inside.
If I solder it directly to the strip, I have to cut parts of interior walls away because the pads are right above where the walls are on some of these.
I used a Pullman interior in the baggage car and cut the seats down and painted them to look like boxes. I drilled two small holes in the solder pads and stuck the pack prongs in the holes and temporarily stuck the strip up in the body. When I lowered the body, the pack hit a wall so I had to cut away part of the wall. The wall can't be seen in the baggage car anyway.
On the Pullman, coaches, diner and observation I will have to cut walls. I guess it won't be that visible anyway unless someone gets down and looks real close inside.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2022, 02:22:38 PM by Terry Toenges » Logged

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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2022, 02:22:19 PM »

The lighting strip with the power pack. It's not soldered yet.


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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2022, 02:38:32 AM »

Happy happy joy joy! I got the baggage car lit and it works. My Bachmann F7A pulling my LIT baggage car. This was a lot of work but I'll be glad to get the other seven lit. I did the baggage car first. I figured if I was going to screw something up, let it be the baggage car because that wouldn't matter a whole lot.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2022, 03:08:31 AM »

This is how I got the power to the light wires that I attached to the ceiling.

I used .008 thick bronze sheet. I didn't want wires because they would cause the interior to raise.

I attached the light wires to the ceiling. I folded some flat copper tape over the wire ends then stuck them to some double-sided gooey tape that I stuck to the ceiling. Then I bent the flat metal strips over so they would contact the copper tape when I put the body on. This way I can remove the body without having to disconnect wires.


« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 03:10:03 AM by Terry Toenges » Logged

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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2022, 03:46:37 PM »

The ceiling inside. The wires are wrapped in the copper tape and stuck up there with clear gel tape.
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2022, 12:55:21 AM »

I'm really having a frustrating time with these lights. I have four cars that work great and work like they are supposed to work - I can turn them on and off with E-Z Command and they come on right away. I have one that takes about three passes around the loop until it stays lit. It kind of flickers on and off during that time. It will stay lit for a few feet the go off for a few then back on. I have a couple of others want to stay unlit most of the time. Occasionally, I'll get a short time where they light and then go back off. The last one is really unpredictable. Sometimes it works and sometimes it won't come on at all. Some will stay lit when the train is sitting still. As soon as it starts moving the lights go out.
I have cleaned the track a couple of times. The four that stay lit do good so if the track was a problem they wouldn't stay lit. I have also cleaned all 96 wheels and 48 axles.
Off the track, all of the cars stay lit when I attach a 9 volt battery to either the axles or wipers. They don't flicker, just solid light.
I just don't know. I have the electric stuff all connected the same way in all of them - axle wipers connected to screw that goes up through the floor. Bronze phospor strips connected to the screws on the floor. At the end, I have the strips bent up so they contact the copper tape enclosed light strip wires on the ceiling when I put the body on. I even ran pieces of copper tape up the inside walls on each side of the door that contacts the ceiling tape.
-------------------------
I've trimmed the wipers down a lot so they aren't near as wide as they are here. I do have nuts on the screws to maintain good contact.

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I have the strips taped down against the sides so they aren't touching. The ends are bent over where they touch the ceiling

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The ceiling with the bare wire ends enclosed in the copper tape and stuck up there with gel tape.

« Last Edit: June 03, 2022, 10:40:00 AM by Terry Toenges » Logged

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