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Discussion Starter #1
Hello...kinda new..building a 22ft X 16ft HO scale layout. I have a yard that I will use DPDT switches and bi color led's to control the turnouts..I guess I am not sure where to install the switches and led's to reflect where I want the trains to go. See below...am I making any sense? Thanks!!


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I had a yard turnout panel on my previous layout but found that I could control the yard much easier with just DPDT slide switches. It's much easier to control the turnouts locally instead of trying to reference a panel that's away from the tracks. Also, with the DPDT slide switches, signals or frogs can be powered too.
The slide switches can be seen right next to the turnout points.
 

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Are you asking where on the layout the parts go, or where on the control panel?
An you need to tell us what the circles and dots are?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The circles are toggle switches...and the dots are the led lights...kind started on it but got stuck...so I'm talking about making the control panel

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Placement of the switches makes sense to me except the one on the bottom center. When I have a crossover, I generally place the switch on the diagonal between the turnouts that are controlled by the switch. Here’s a shot of a panel for a Ross 4-way and a shot of a partial panel for some crossovers.

IMG_0938 (2).JPG

2016-03-31-5230 (3).JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So can u explain what happens when you switch the toggle one way versus the other way? I guess I don't get the concept.

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So can u explain what happens when you switch the toggle one way versus the other way? I guess I don't get the concept.

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If you throw the toggle one way, the turnout(s) throw that way.

If you throw the toggle the other way, the turnout(s) throw the other way.

For crossovers, since both turnouts must be thrown the same way, it's usual to just use one (toggle) switch to control both turnouts.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
If you throw the toggle one way, the turnout(s) throw that way.



If you throw the toggle the other way, the turnout(s) throw the other way.



For crossovers, since both turnouts must be thrown the same way, it's usual to just use one (toggle) switch to control both turnouts.
So the switches must be oriented up or down or side to side?

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This is one of my ladder sections. The toggle switches by the red and green LED's are for the switch motors. The toggle switches in the middle of each track is for power. I do that because some of my rolling stock have lights and I don't want them on all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
This is one of my ladder sections. The toggle switches by the red and green LED's are for the switch motors. The toggle switches in the middle of each track is for power. I do that because some of my rolling stock have lights and I don't want them on all the time.
Very nice...so the one toggle u have in the far upper right corner..which way does it go? Side to side? And when the green light is on which way does train go? Thanks!!

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Discussion Starter #12
So the turnout to the left of the far right one I see has green red green led. How does that switch work?

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So the switches must be oriented up or down or side to side?

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Whatever makes sense to you and/or your operators.

Usually the toggles are installed so that it's obvious which direction it's throwing the turnout - i.e. if your diagram runs left-right, the toggle will throw up-down so that if the toggle is thrown to the top, the matching turnout should be thrown so the the train would go into the top track on the diagram. To route the train into the lower track, throw the toggle to the down position. (The position of the toggle is towards the track the turnout is routed for.)
 

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It is a double crossover and out of sight to the left are two toggle switches that control which direction you want to go coming into the double crossover. If the train is coming in on the lower track and you want it to cross over to the top line then you throw the bottom toggle switch and the top red LED light will go on. If the train is coming in on the top line and you want it to go to the bottom line then throw the top toggle switch and the bottom red LED will light. Hope that helps.
 

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I would look closely at how you are going to use the yard and then see if you can use programmed routes. One push of a button and all the appropriate turnouts set to the desired position. Then you can use green LED's to highlight the route and red for everything else. much easier than having to manually scan to see it everything is right.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Whatever makes sense to you and/or your operators.



Usually the toggles are installed so that it's obvious which direction it's throwing the turnout - i.e. if your diagram runs left-right, the toggle will throw up-down so that if the toggle is thrown to the top, the matching turnout should be thrown so the the train would go into the top track on the diagram. To route the train into the lower track, throw the toggle to the down position. (The position of the toggle is towards the track the turnout is routed for.)
Thanks! Feel like an idiot asking all these questions...thanks again!

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Route control

I would look closely at how you are going to use the yard and then see if you can use programmed routes. One push of a button and all the appropriate turnouts set to the desired position. Then you can use green LED's to highlight the route and red for everything else. much easier than having to manually scan to see it everything is right.


Tommy24a;

Don't feel "like an idiot" for asking questions. We are here to help, and an actual idiot wouldn't know enough to ask questions. The fact that you are asking for help understanding something that is unfamiliar to you, shows that you are intelligent. not idiotic.:D

I strongly agree with Lemonhawk's suggestion above. I use route control for the yards on my layout. It does make things very easy, and it is simple enough that any visiting operator can understand and use it easily.

There have been many articles published in Model Railroader magazine about various route control circuits. Which circuit will suit your layout will depend on what type of switch machines you are using. If your turnouts are operated by twin-coil machines, like those made by Atlas and Peco, then push-buttons and a simple diode matrix will work. Use a capacitive discharge system (CDU) to protect the coils from burnout.

From the toggle switches in the prior responses, I assume that the panels shown control DC stall motors. If you use some DC stall motor, like a Tortoise machine, then the electronics can get more complicated. Some folks have used digital electronic sequencer circuits. I prefer a much simpler system that uses one rotary switch, a bunch of diodes, and a split, uneven voltage, power supply.
(see photos.) The one rotary switch controls all the motors needed to route the train onto the selected track. I didn't use LED panel indicators, since they weren't needed. The orange stripe on the knob makes it obvious which track has been selected. You could add LEDs if you want to. I like to keep things simple.
(By the way, the white panel on the left is not part of the track selection system. It controls the four sets of motorized doors, and the lights of the engine house above, and slightly to the left of that white control panel.)
I copied my route control method from a Model Railroader article. If you are interested, and are using DC motors to operate your turnouts, I can look it up and give you more information on the system I use.

have fun;

Traction Fan:smilie_daumenpos:

Cedar Falls control panel.JPG

Cedar Falls motors & linkages.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well quite a setup there....I do plan on the tortoise switch route...but at this point I will take what ever suggestions that anyone has into consideration...so far I have some small DPDT switches, bunch of bi color led's with holders. My grown Son and I are doing this layout and have plenty to learn. We have NCE power cab, and a 5 amp booster. We ran the buss wire and have it split into 3 different power zones each protected by a circuit breaker. Also have small feeder blocks to run feeder wire from. We just started the sub roadbed cookie cutter design.


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I'm kind of late to the party, but I'f you haven't sunk any real money into this yet, you might want to look at the turnout control systems from Tam Valley Depot (my preferred supplier) or Walthers. They are essentially the same. A miniature servo motor drives the turnout points, and a selector push button activates it. Two LEDs are displayed: a green one for the selected route, and a red one for the non-selected route. This makes it super easy to visually see which route is selected, and because it's push button activated, you don't have to try to see which direction things need to be thrown.

Here is a picture of a control board made using the Tam Valley products.

IMG_20170101_203835348.jpg

And a close up of the mounted push button assembly.

You will have to excuse the rough nature of the track diagram. It was made by my then 10 year old son.

IMG_20170101_203847995.jpg
 
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