Sunday, 18 January 2015

Instructions for Clearance Posts with Lamps

21 January 2015
  • Painting instructions changed
  • Resistor values changed and example photos added.

Clearance posts with lamps were placed at fouling points of sidings and loops and were painted white for visibility. The lamps were lit at night usually by the Station Assistant and spares would have been kept along with kerosene in the lamp room attached to the men’s toilet.

The Model
A sprue of eight clearance posts and lamps are available in White Strong and Flexible (WSF), Frosted Detail (FD) and Frosted Ultra Detail (FUD).

The WSF posts are available for those that don’t want to risk breaking the posts when using a track rubber to clean the track.

The FD and FUD are higher resolution than the WSF posts but at the potential expense of breaking if knocked.
As the FD and FUD is a translucent acrylic resin this feature has been used to enable the lamp to be lit by those modellers if they are so inclined.

The WSF does not require cleaning other than a brushing to remove any adhering powder.

THE FD and FUD should be rinsed for 30 seconds or so in acetone and allowed to dry.

If the lamp is WSF or FD/FUD and is not to be lit then paint the post and lamp with matt white and after drying for a day or two, paint a second coat of matt white paint. Paint the lamp lens silver.

I you wish to light the lamp then follow these steps:
The lens of the FD and FUD lamps may be white after cleaning with the acetone but don’t worry.

Apply a small droplet of Super Glue (ACC) to the lens and to the base of the baseboard mounting this will turn the lens and base clear.
Paint first with matt black but do not paint the lens. There is also no need to paint below the circular base.

Once the first coat is dry (allow a day or two) then paint  the post and lamp with matt black paint again followed by matt white once dry, again one to two days.

The mounting post diameter is 3mm so drill a 3mm hole at the fouling position of a point probably about 200mm from the frog or to suit.

If you wish to have the lamp lit then a 3mm sunny/golden white LED can be placed in the 3mm hole below the baseboard. The golden white LED is a more yellow light suitable for a kerosene lamp.
Of course a suitable resistor will be required for the LED. The usual value resistor used for 12 – 13.5v DC is a ¼ or ½ Watt 1K Ohm.

I prefer a 10K Ohm resistor as it doesn't appear to be on when it is 'day light' and is slightly less bright in the dark perhaps replicating a kerosene lamp.

Here are some examples:

1K Ohm resistor - Light shows in 'daylight'
1K Ohm resistor - Light flare from lens
10K Ohm resistor - Lamp appears to be off in 'daylight'
10K Ohm resistor - No light flare from lens


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