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TOU

Posted: Mon Feb 07, 2011 5:43 pm
by doktorstamp
Being one who realises there is never a one-size-fits-all solution; what would members recommend as the drive for TOU?
Tortoise
Fulgarex
Colbalt
Servos; Is a particular brand recommended here
Any other makes.

regards

Nigel

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Feb 07, 2011 6:16 pm
by David Knight
At the risk of sounding a bit flippant, it depends ;) . If you have a large layout where everything is controlled from a single location then one of the motorized variety is the logical choice. However, if you are proposing either a shunting plank or a shelf type layout where you will be following the train around the tried and true wire-in-tube has much to be said for it both in terms of simplicity and cost.

HTH

David

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Feb 07, 2011 6:56 pm
by grovenor-2685
Choice of motor also depends to a degree on the type of TOU you are intending to apply, and how much DIY effort you want to put in.

Cobalt is designed for RTR track, for Hand built P4 you will need to adapt it and as its so new there is not much precedent yet.
Tortoise, similar but much longer established and can be used directly with Exactoscale Tortoise adapters. (It may be possible to use these adapters with Cobalt subject to some DIY mods.
Fulgurex, fairly flexible in choice of TOU but large, noisy and with reliability problems.
Servos, I have tried the rest (except Cobalt) and have now settled on Servos, you need to do a bit of work arranging mounting and linkage but very cost effective and adaptable. I initially used the 'standard' size but am now using the micro ones as used for signals in the recent MRJ article. They do need an electronic drive circuit for which I use the MERG kits. (Some people suggest removing the electronics from the SErvo and just using as a stall motor, I have not tried that so can't confirm or deny)

The board I am currently working on has 3 points, one with a Studiolith (P4 Mk1) TOU, one with an Exactoscale (Bernard Weller type) TOU and one with an Exactoscale Tortoise adapter. All three are driven by Servos. The latter being my 'New works' standard.
The job was to add that third turnout but I took the opportunity to remove the original stall motors from the other 2 points and replace them with servos.
See also "Servo drive unit"
This shows the larger version of the Servo but the micro one goes together essentially the same way.
Regards
Keith

Re: TOU

Posted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 10:53 am
by doktorstamp
Thank you both for your replies.

Who do I need to speak too re the circuit from MERG?

regards

Nigel

Re: TOU

Posted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:29 am
by craig_whilding
doktorstamp wrote:Thank you both for your replies.
Who do I need to speak too re the circuit from MERG?
regards
Nigel

http://www.merg.org.uk/

Re: TOU

Posted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:25 pm
by grovenor-2685
Who do I need to speak too re the circuit from MERG?

As Craig says details are on the MERG site, any other queries you can ask me directly.
Regards
Keith

Re: TOU

Posted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 9:56 am
by David Thorpe
Has anyone tried the Conrad point operating motors? They're currently on offer at £3.99.

DT

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 1:30 pm
by barhamd
I've used some Conrad point motors on my P4 line, but not for turnouts. They have a reasonably quiet 'thunk' but I'm not sure about the torque. I suspect they might have difficulty holding a turnout over, particularly if there is a bit of spring one way or the other in the switch rails. I've used them for operating shunt signals. They are a bit odd to wire as they come with a common and two inputs wired with diodes going in opposite directions.

David Barham

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 2:02 pm
by LesGros
David Barham wrote about conrad TOU motors
...They are a bit odd to wire as they come with a common and two inputs wired with diodes going in opposite directions.


Does anyone have connection instructions/guidance that they could post please

Re: TOU

Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:02 am
by Flymo748
LesGros wrote:David Barham wrote about conrad TOU motors
...They are a bit odd to wire as they come with a common and two inputs wired with diodes going in opposite directions.


Does anyone have connection instructions/guidance that they could post please

Hi Les,

I'm about to install some Conrad point motors. I picked up four or five as "cheap and cheerful" ones to use on the demo board that I'm building. It's actually nearing completion. I had some free time last Sunday and installed electromagnets for uncoupling on the board, and I've fitted one TOU and Conrad point motor:

Motor 002.jpg


Note that they haven't been physically connected or wired in yet. That's a task for my next bout of free time in a weekend or two. I really must write some of this up on my Beer & Buckjumpers thread as well...

Anyway, to your question: the Conrad point motor instructions are actually all available online: http://www.produktinfo.conrad.com/datenblaetter/200000-224999/219998-an-01-ml-Weichenantrieb_m_Umschaltung_de_en.pdf

They don't look great for an electrical idiot like me, but they certainly seem adequate to make a start. The Conrad website is also refreshingly honest, with warts-and-all reviews published on it, so you can form a true opinion of how these work. http://shop.conrad-uk.com/hobbies/model-railway/model-railway-accessories/track-accessories/219998.html

And of course at four quid a pop, it's not expensive to use them in experiment with...

HTH
Flymo

Re: TOU

Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:52 pm
by TonyMont
Hi Flymo,
I have read the two links you posted and agree that the motor looks interesting and inexpensive, I will be very interested to see how you go on with the installation and wiring, please keep us posted.
Best regards,
Tony.

Re: TOU

Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:21 pm
by LesGros
Flymo,
Many thanks for posting the links, and also to DaveyTee who kindly sent a copy by snailmail, got it today. I have a few of these units and found the wiring Ident colours a bit of a puzzle, which I had put to one side for later consideration. I also wondered what was going on inside the unit. It appears that "which brown and which blue to connect where", involves a bit of trial and error?

Hopefully we can learn from your experiment. BTW, the TOU actuator looks neat; is it a DIY job with plastruct?

regards

Re: TOU

Posted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:43 pm
by Flymo748
LesGros wrote:Hopefully we can learn from your experiment. BTW, the TOU actuator looks neat; is it a DIY job with plastruct?

I shall certainly pass on whatever experiences I have with the Conrad motors. Unfortunately it looks like I'll be working much of the evening and weekend, and I've just been summoned to the Netherlands for the first three days of next week, so I'm afraid that it may only be in a few days.

The TOU is indeed a homemade construction. The owner of a certain Scottish Layout Whose Name Shall Not Be Spoken was very scathing about the pictures of it last night in the the pub ;-)

However I've taken a number of pictures of them during construction. I'll wait to get it all connected up and working (no point in promoting an idea that that is frankly a bit rubbish) and then stick them all up on the Forum.

Cheers
Flymo

Re: TOU

Posted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:31 am
by Andy C
Flymo748 wrote:
LesGros wrote:Hopefully we can learn from your experiment. BTW, the TOU actuator looks neat; is it a DIY job with plastruct?

The TOU is indeed a homemade construction. The owner of a certain Scottish Layout Whose Name Shall Not Be Spoken was very scathing about the pictures of it last night in the the pub ;-)

However I've taken a number of pictures of them during construction. I'll wait to get it all connected up and working (no point in promoting an idea that that is frankly a bit rubbish) and then stick them all up on the Forum.

Cheers
Flymo


Owners of Scottish layouts should not scoff Flymo - I used a TOU very similar to that out of plastruct sections (although I used a heavy duty plastic right angle section from the DIY store that dare not mention its name for the mounting plates) when I built Spotland Bridge some time ago when Moby Dick was still a tadpole.

They were very, very successful and a similar arrangement was put on New Hey until I changed the motors. The bit of copper clad on the motion arm which the capiliary tubes are soldered to adds a degree of fine adjustment. Carry on sir, let not others put you off!!!

Interestingly no one has mentione the Finney and Smith / Hoffmann point motors yet which i will be using on North Ballachulish (along with the plastruct TOUs lol) - anyone had any experience of them?

Re: TOU

Posted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 11:20 pm
by DougN
All very interesting. I really like the idea of the Conrad motors they seem to do what we want (linear motion, controllable etc) and are extremely cheap!....(brings me to wonder if they will post to me here in Australia....though I note a few UK suppliers of womens clothing are now advertising on radio out here, buy on the internet and post with in 5 days!) I think they could be good for signals and other things I am playing with at the moment.

has any one pulled one of the turntables apart to turn into a model rail turntable drive?

Re: TOU

Posted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:26 pm
by John Fitton
grovenor-2685 wrote:Fulgurex, fairly flexible in choice of TOU but large, noisy and with reliability problems.

Keith


Keith,

I have over 15 installed and a large number to be installed this winter. What are the reliability issues with fulgurex motors? I find they can be quitened down quite a bit by not screwing them down hard to the baseboard, and fairly copious amounts of labelle lube.

John

Re: TOU

Posted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:44 pm
by grovenor-2685
On the layout I experienced these on we tried quite a lot of things to quiet them, including fitting with rubber between them and the board, still made a lot more noise than we liked. Other than that the main issue seemed to be with the end of throw cut off contacts getting out of adjustment and the nut then jamming at the end of the thread at which point the motor does not have enough torque to start it and it needed manual intervention.
We also have one on our MERG demo which does not even have points connected but still gets stuck on occasion.
Since there are better and cheaper alternatives why bother.
But if you already bought them and they work for you, OK.
Regards
Keith

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:44 am
by John Fitton
Thanks Keith,

I have noticed that if I drive them too fast they can get jammed, so I run them at a lower voltage. Havent actually measured it though, might be worth doing for future troubleshooting..

John

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 11:59 am
by ChrisMitchell
Just picked up on this thread.

I used the Hoffmann motors on my layout and was very pleased with the results. The Conrad motors look almost identical from the pictures and are a fraction of the price. Has anyone made a comparison?

Chris

Re: TOU

Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 2:24 pm
by Russ Elliott
Fulgurexes are certainly happier on a more modest voltage, say 8V to 10V. Some can be a bit noisy, but suitable lubrication (I use some bicycle jelly oil on the gears) helps a lot.

Re: TOU

Posted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:07 pm
by TEZBEDZ
Flymo748 wrote:
LesGros wrote:Hopefully we can learn from your experiment. BTW, the TOU actuator looks neat; is it a DIY job with plastruct?

I shall certainly pass on whatever experiences I have with the Conrad motors. Unfortunately it looks like I'll be working much of the evening and weekend, and I've just been summoned to the Netherlands for the first three days of next week, so I'm afraid that it may only be in a few days.

The TOU is indeed a homemade construction. The owner of a certain Scottish Layout Whose Name Shall Not Be Spoken was very scathing about the pictures of it last night in the the pub ;-)

However I've taken a number of pictures of them during construction. I'll wait to get it all connected up and working (no point in promoting an idea that that is frankly a bit rubbish) and then stick them all up on the Forum.

Cheers
Flymo

I am interested in the construction of the TOU, I have started to build some similar to those in Iain Rices book. Yours look very neat.

Re: TOU

Posted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:07 pm
by TEZBEDZ
Flymo748 wrote:
LesGros wrote:Hopefully we can learn from your experiment. BTW, the TOU actuator looks neat; is it a DIY job with plastruct?

I shall certainly pass on whatever experiences I have with the Conrad motors. Unfortunately it looks like I'll be working much of the evening and weekend, and I've just been summoned to the Netherlands for the first three days of next week, so I'm afraid that it may only be in a few days.

The TOU is indeed a homemade construction. The owner of a certain Scottish Layout Whose Name Shall Not Be Spoken was very scathing about the pictures of it last night in the the pub ;-)

However I've taken a number of pictures of them during construction. I'll wait to get it all connected up and working (no point in promoting an idea that that is frankly a bit rubbish) and then stick them all up on the Forum.

Cheers
Flymo

I am interested in the construction of the TOU, I have started to build some similar to those in Iain Rices book. Yours look very neat.

Re: TOU

Posted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:47 pm
by Flymo748
TEZBEDZ wrote:I am interested in the construction of the TOU, I have started to build some similar to those in Iain Rices book. Yours look very neat.

Hi Terry,

Over ----> there...

On my "Beer and Buckjumpers" thread :-)

http://www.scalefour.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=425&start=300

Flymo

Re: TOU

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 3:25 pm
by martin goodall
TEZBEDZ wrote:[I have started to build some similar to those in Iain Rices book.


I have used Iain Rice's TOU design on 'Burford' and am very pleased with this form of point actuator - simple and reliable. Iain has described and illustrated this design in at least half a dozen different publications, so it deserves to be well-known.

On my layout, the drive comes up beside the point, because I laid the track before I finally decided how I was going to drive the points. I originally had in mind installing working above-baseboard point rodding, which I had successfully used on 'Crichel Down'. Not my own idea; I was copying Ray Hammond's method (as used on 'Buntingham'), and this in turn was based on an article in MRC in the early 50s by [A?] Williams. But I had a fit of laziness and decided that under-baseboard rodding was going to be easier in this case.

'Flymo's' TOUs certainly look neat.

As they say, there's more than one way of skinning a cat.

Re: TOU

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 8:55 pm
by Chris Mitton
Flymo748 wrote:Over ----> there...

On my "Beer and Buckjumpers" thread :-)

http://www.scalefour.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=425&start=300

Flymo

Having hijacked a bit of Paul's thread already with my own bowdlerised under-board TOU, glad to see this topic has come back on the thread it really belongs.....but....

Please can someone explain to me any bright ideas for using one of these on a double slip? I can't see that using four tubes and droppers would work, since the two pairs of blade-tips have to move in different directions, separated by an angle equal to the crossing angle. Any suggestions welcome before I start to build the damn thing, hopefully some time next year.

Regards
Chris