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Author Topic: Please help me signal my layout  (Read 1547 times)

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Offline LAandNQFan

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2019, 11:38:32 PM »
Don't knock yourself out over accuracy - remember that we are modelling.  The art is in giving yourself something which looks convincing, is plausible, and is fun to operate.
Perhaps the proof that there is intelligent life in outer space is that they haven't contacted us.
Layout thread: http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=23416

Offline Lankyman

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #16 on: February 08, 2019, 09:44:17 PM »
Please don't take my comments the wrong way. There is nothing wrong with your layout, i have seen many such in real life. I was just highlighting the problem that the level crossing gives and which, in real life, would have to be considered. You don't have to have a signal immediately on each side of the crossing, these days it would have to be at least 200 yards if it was a colour-light anyway. The platform starter could serve this purpose and, in the opposite direction the protecting signal could be off scene which is what you have depicted. All this means is that every shunt into and out of the yard must have the crossing gates/barriers closed to road traffic. If you intend to do a lot of shunting then that means the road will be closed for long periods so it becomes a road traffic bottleneck. If you think about, for a through train the gates will be closed from the moment the signal is cleared for the train to depart from the platform to it clearing the crossing. In the other direction the gates will be closed from a time before the train reaches the distant signal. wherever that is, until it clears the crossing. This is not a high speed route so trains will be travelling relatively slowly. For a shunt move the gates will be closed from the time a signal is cleared to depart from the yard until the movement returns clear of the crossing.

Unless you are going to model a working level crossing none of this matters because the gates will probably be closed to the road perpetually anyway so Rule 1 applies. Forget about historical accuracy and do it your way and you will find that your trains work fine. Alternatively do what I do with my layout and ignore the signals because I have made my layout too complicated. I can signal it in either colour lights or semaphores but is it simply too complicated and nobody makes the configuration of signals that I would need. In my head I know where the signal would be, what they would look like and how they would function. Remember that in real life many signals are bespoke and the design is a one-off so if you want to model it you will have to scratchbuild it. My previous comments were only made to illustrate the fact that, as you have a level crossing in your design, you will need to take into account of its type and how it works. Every level crossing has its own legal order produced by the Department of Transport which stipulates what type of crossing it is and whether the crossing is normally open for road traffic and closed to rail or vice-versa. It will also stipulate how and when the crossing can be used.

Don't let the detail bog you down, just get on with building your own railway and make your own rules.

Ron
Ron

Offline mickster04

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #17 on: February 08, 2019, 10:46:14 PM »
Wow. Gotta love this forum. Such a wealth of knowledge! Yeah, I'm dropping the crossing as it would require sacrificing a lot of proximity to protototype. I don't need my. Layout 100%, but I do want it vaguely. Feasible at least, and a level crossing would push that envelope too far I think. Thanks!

Offline DarrwestLU6

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2019, 12:38:19 AM »
Great thread and comments everyone and I've learnt something about signalling. Just in passing if you've not seen it, I can recommend: https://signalbox.org/ for historic data and a concise summary of signalling practice.
Hogwarts to King's Cross - My layout under construction: http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=43358.msg536504#msg536504

Offline springwood

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #19 on: January 27, 2020, 09:53:45 AM »
Hi all, progress on my layout (Springwood) continues..slowly! Amongst a myriad of other things, I am thinking about signals. It's era 7 (BR blue, TOPS etc). I certainly want some signals, but just can't fully decide whether to go semaphore or colour lights  :hmmm:
As per comments in the prior threads, I am not looking to go to the n'th degree of detail and get it exactly like the real thing, merely after a bit of 'basic' guidance. Would I be ok to post some photos/sketches and try and solicit some help in this regard from you 'experts' out there??

Offline mickster04

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #20 on: January 27, 2020, 09:02:03 PM »
Please share your layout :) I would like to see what others are doing :D

Offline springwood

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #21 on: January 30, 2020, 09:36:02 PM »
Didn't really hear much back following my post of a few days ago so thought I would share a few pics and a diagram with my thoughts on 'going semaphore'. Please come back to me with your comments and suggestions and ask away if you have questions! You will see on the diagram I have '??' at the end of the branch bay platform. Really not sure here as a train could proceed straight on and continue on the branch or possibly cross onto the down main. Thank you









Offline njee20

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #22 on: January 30, 2020, 10:08:42 PM »
A layout of that size would basically be one signal block, so you need one signal in each direction, potentially at the end of the platforms, plus one at the end of the bay platform.

Online crewearpley40

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #23 on: January 30, 2020, 10:21:12 PM »
Colour signals are ok to wire and solder .just need wires, screwdriver, solder, iron, just ask @DarrwestLU6 who kindly helped me wire up my berko eckon signals. How we managed. Semaphore plenty has been put on here but would look good too.

Offline Train Waiting

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #24 on: January 31, 2020, 09:12:08 AM »
Hello

That's a very nice-looking layout.

As you asked, for basic signalling, which will look great on this layout, I can make a few suggestions.  Your layout is set around 1980 or so, when there were still a lot of semaphore signals around and many of the track and signal layouts had been simplified.  From your locomotives, this layout does not appear to be set in the Western Region, so the semaphores will be upper quadrant.

I am assuming that branch line services are restricted to locomotive movements and, perhaps, some freight traffic and that there would not be passenger train movements from the main line to the branch platform.

For the up line, a home signal before the facing crossover and a starting signal where you have the up home signal.  The distant would be the other side of the tunnel but if you want a nice yellow signal on show, then put it a little closer to the tunnel mouth, say at the end of the curve, and enjoy the fun of Rule 1.

For the down line, a home signal between the tunnel and the platform, a starting signal where you have the down home signal and an advanced starting signal beyond the facing crossover.  There is not enough space, in my view, for a down distant signal.

This arrangement defines what is known as 'station limits'.  If I'm correct regarding the branch line, entry to it from the main line could be controlled by ground signals beside the points.  For your era, these would be ground disc signals. 

How does that look to you?  If remotely helpful, please say and we can then have a think about the branch line.  If I have misunderstood the possibility of passenger movements to/from the branch line, please say and I'll provide you with a suggestion.

Best wishes.

John

'Why does the Disney Castle work so well?  Because it borrows from reality without ever slipping into it.'

(Acknowledgement: John Goodall Esq, Architectural Editor, 'Country Life'.)

The Table-Top Railway is an attempt to create, in British 'N' gauge,  a 'semi-scenic' railway in the old-fashioned style, reminiscent of the layouts of the 1920s to the 1950s.

For the made-up background to the railway and list of characters, please see here: https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=38281.msg607991#msg607991

Online crewearpley40

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #25 on: January 31, 2020, 09:28:50 AM »
I share John's thoughts. Scenery and station buildings. The loco shed area are you using a modern kit ? Bh enterprises has a card variety that would not look out of place.

Offline springwood

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #26 on: January 31, 2020, 10:33:16 AM »
Thank you, John (Train waiting), very much for your opening comment and guidance - most helpful!
Yes, the intended era is late 70s/early 80s and approx location would be (not surprisingly!) around where I live, which is 10 miles or so NE out of Chester. Mainlines (on the layout) will see the usual variety of passenger and mixed freight activity, depicting services to and from the Warrington/Manchester area to the east and via Chester to the north wales coast in a westerly direction. As the branch line is essentially end-to-end, the intention is to just run a local 2-car DMU sort of 'shuttle' service (see DMU parked at branch station in pic 1 and steam specials. There may be instances when a service needs to join the down line from the bay at the main station.
Note: Any locos running light engine returning to the yard from the mainlines have to use the branch line and crossover at the branch station to enter the yard.
I like your suggestions for the placement of signals and I have revised my sketch diagram - see attached.

Questions:
1. Visually, are a home and advanced starting signal the same?
2. To cater for movements from mainstation branch bay to down main, would I require a home junction signal? As per this link https://www.petersspares.com/ratio-262-junction-or-bracket-home-or-distant-signal-plastic-kit-n-gauge.ir
3. Certainly would like to have working signals, but do you think there is any scope to automate??!

4. The attached pic shows 2 signals at my local station - are these both upper quadrant home or would the top photo show an advanced starter?

Thanks again - look forward to hearing from you..and others.




Online crewearpley40

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2020, 10:37:05 AM »
I f I'm thinking correct Frodsham/ helsby. Plenty of class 20, 25 37  40 47 action. I used berk eckon and cr signals. . Plenty on the market if Google  n gauge semaphore signals⁶
« Last Edit: January 31, 2020, 07:42:19 PM by crewearpley40 »

Offline Train Waiting

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2020, 02:51:22 PM »
Thanks you very much.  Let's start with your questions:


Questions:
1. Visually, are a home and advanced starting signal the same?
2. To cater for movements from mainstation branch bay to down main, would I require a home junction signal? As per this link https://www.petersspares.com/ratio-262-junction-or-bracket-home-or-distant-signal-plastic-kit-n-gauge.ir
3. Certainly would like to have working signals, but do you think there is any scope to automate??!

4. The attached pic shows 2 signals at my local station - are these both upper quadrant home or would the top photo show an advanced starter?



Q1: Yes, home, starting and advanced starting signals look the same.  A red arm with a white band to the front and a white arm with a black band to the rear.  The correct terminology nowadays for one of these signals is a 'stop signal'.  A driver cannot pass one in the 'on' position without authority.  For a stop signal, the on position is with the arm horizontal.  You could also call this signal aspect 'stop'.  The stop signal furthest in advance of the signal box is nowadays called a 'section signal'.  This signal allows a train to proceed into the next block section.  A lot of modelling terminology simply calls a semaphore stop signal a home signal.

Q2: Let's cover this later, if you would like us to consider the branch line.

Q3: Automation is for another ForumFriend to deal with; it's not my thing!

Q4: Thank you for these super photographs!

The signals stuck up on posts are all upper quadrant stop signals.  Upper quadrant means that when the signal is cleared to the 'off' position, the arm is raised about 45o upwards.  By your period, upper quadrant signals were almost universal on BR apart from the Western Region which used lower quadrant signals.  When these are pulled off, the signal arm falls by about the same amount.  The model signals illustrated in your link are lower quadrant stop signals from the Western Region. 

Your first photograph is of interest as it shows the ground disc signals controlling access to the siding and crossover.

Without seeing the location or a signalling diagram, I think the first photograph shows a starting signal and, in the background, a home signal.  As the trailing crossover is in advance of the starting signal, I think there is a good chance that there might be an advanced starting signal ahead, beyond the crossover.

I'm fairly sure that the second photograph shows a starting signal.

As for your revised diagram; I think it is excellent and ideal for your layout.  You could move the down home away from the tunnel and a bit closer to the platform.

I realise that I've rambled on a lot here.  Please let me know of any questions you have and whether or not you wish to think about signalling the branch line.  The really important thing to consider is, when a train is moving from the branch bay platform to the down main, could there be passengers on it?

Best wishes.

John
« Last Edit: January 31, 2020, 02:53:52 PM by Train Waiting »
'Why does the Disney Castle work so well?  Because it borrows from reality without ever slipping into it.'

(Acknowledgement: John Goodall Esq, Architectural Editor, 'Country Life'.)

The Table-Top Railway is an attempt to create, in British 'N' gauge,  a 'semi-scenic' railway in the old-fashioned style, reminiscent of the layouts of the 1920s to the 1950s.

For the made-up background to the railway and list of characters, please see here: https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=38281.msg607991#msg607991

Online crewearpley40

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Re: Please help me signal my layout
« Reply #29 on: January 31, 2020, 03:02:34 PM »
If its helsby theres a good shot on geography.org.uk , google semaphore signals helsby. This is where the the control of the block  section from chester to warrington is. The photo shows another signal controlling exit from ellesmere  port

 

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