Springing Peco Points

bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Hi All,

My first post. Yes I'm fairly new to this gauge, I normally play with much larger stuff.

I have designed my layout and found that I need to spring load some Peco points. They seem to 'trail' with no problem, but I want them to return to the same setting and wondered if anybody had a simple foolproof method of achieving it. I had thought to re-drill the over-centre spring hole in the blade link but am reluctant to do so without confirmation that it will work.

B.
 
Neil Robinson

Neil Robinson

Registered
24 Oct 2009
9,417
538
N W Leicestershire
No personal experience and the following is probably over complex and expensive.
However it ought to work.
Peco produce an adapter to fit LGB point motors to their points.
http://www.buffersmodelrailways.com...ounting-plate-for-g45-turnout/prod_14460.html < Link To http://www.buffersmodelra...urnout/prod_14460.html
I'm pretty sure that LGB manual and electric point motors are interchangeable and I'm certain that the manual ones have the springing you need, so you could fit a manual version to the Peco adapter.
http://www.dragon-gscale.co.uk/lgb-12060-switch-drive-manual-2-pieces-382-p.asp < Link To http://www.dragon-gscale....ual-2-pieces-382-p.asp
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Thanks Neil,

That would certainly be an option, slightly expensive, but not out of the question. I did email Peco and they had no suggestions which I find a little odd. Surely almost every railway has need of a sprung point somewhere.

B
TVBL
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
I've had further thoughts on this one. Perhaps a single blade spring, like a length of clock spring. Rust might be a problem outside. It might be also prudent to remove the existing spring to soften the load.
 
MRail

MRail

16mm etc - Live steam, battery & trams
A friend is currently converting some 45mm Peco points using the springs from old floppy disks.
I'll be going over to assist with test running on Saturday, so I could get some gen.

My own 32mm points are soldered on copper clad sleepers, and I use LGB pickup brushes for return springs.
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Sounds interesting Rob, please keep me informed as to the results. It's a slightly tricky problem as the spring weight needs to be just right to stop problems. I'm still working on the problem too. I'll shortly (hopefully) be posting a complete break-down of what I'm up to, track wise, and the 'need' will be totally clear then.
 
stevelewis

stevelewis

Registered
24 Oct 2009
2,480
38
Buckley NR MOLD NORTH WALES
Theres a very simple solution!!

First remove the over centre spring ( & Put it somewhere safe in case you wish to return the point to its original format)

2Nd if your point is laid on a wooden base** insert a wood screw ( Or panel pin) approx 3.5" from the tie bar end on the side relevant to which you require the point to 'spring ' to.

Drill a small hole in the end of the tie bar and insert a small piece of brass wire ( Or paper clip unbent) This has to be shaped in a HOOK Shape, link the brass wire to the screw/ panel pin with a suitable rubber band

You will have to experiment a bit to get the correct tension and you will find that the rubber bands will need regualr replacement ( but not that frequently) if outside.

This method has been used by me and several others with Peco points in various scales for many years and it works! Springs are OK but they tend to lose spriginess very quickly and it becomes a chore replacing & resetting them.

** if your points are not laid on a wooden base then use a suitable piece of wood under the point to accomaodate the screw/panel pin fixing.
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
That's another solution, I knew if I posted, ideas would come out of the woodwork.

Actually on the point that is critcal, it has a brass sheet base at the pull bar end so I could drill that and fit a small nut and bolt. I do think the removal of the original over-centre spring will be essential.

Thanks Steve.
 
bobg

bobg

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3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
A friend is currently converting some 45mm Peco points using the springs from old floppy disks.

Not using doppy fliscs very often these days I had difficulty laying hands on one, but now that I have, I can see the attraction of the spring (or two?)!!!
 
MRail

MRail

16mm etc - Live steam, battery & trams
Similar springs can be found inside redundant VHS cassettes.
I repaired an LGB R1 point with one of these, making it spring one way for my tram line.
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Cheers for that Rob, I had a play with the doppy flisc spring today and found that I had some points that it wouldn't operate, so had to set about servicing them. Most of the problem was just a build up of general crud (2nd hand) but two of them were binding on the slide. One of those was due to tight screws (rust) and the other I had to ease the butt end of the blades with a file to get clearance. I cant really see what caused the need, but everything seems right now.

I did find that it was strong enough to overcome the original over-centre spring. I didn't have time to test it with a lightweight truck.
 
bobg

bobg

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3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Thanks Ross, good tip. At the moment I've left them dry so they are less inclined to gather the dust and dirt that was there before. I'll see how they go on.

Never did like WD40 for those jobs, it tends to dry out quite quickly and you're back to square one.

PS (It softens skin of the hands so tell the wife and get her to do the job)

That'd be a good idea.......if I had one. I managed to escape, years ago. Second best day's work I ever did.:happy::happy::happy:
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
As promised, further experimentation has been carried out. No conclusive detail for the use of springs has been discovered yet except that several sets of points all required different 'weights' to change them, even with the over-centre springs disabled.

A standard is required with which to work and I settled on "the lightest piece of rolling stock must operate the point on it's own, EVERY time, without failure or de-railment". Fairly obvious really I suppose. For me that rolling stock is a W&L flat truck (without load).

Getting back to basics, full-size practise is to use a weighted lever for this purpose. I could find no suitable lever, even for modification, from any of the usual suppliers. Whilst I probably have the equipment to make such an article I don't have the patience for the failures. The thought of weights stayed, and I realised that half of my points are high in the air, on a shelf along the fence, so the photo shows the current system.

It is, I hope, obviously temporary. The Blu-Tac could be replaced with clear silicon sealer, or the short length of rail (anti-friction) could be replaced with a Mylar strip. Much prettier weights should be no problem. What is difficult to see in the photo is the fishing line used to hang the weight. But it WORKS, 99.9999999%, I have fitted it to 3 sets and had one occasion during testing when an axle lifted but dropped back in the groove straight away, a slight reduction in the weight should fix that.

 
MRail

MRail

16mm etc - Live steam, battery & trams
Sounds interesting Rob, please keep me informed as to the results

Attached pic (not mine) of Peco point with Disk spring. I hope it's clear enough.
The lever is an afterthought and simply presses against the end of the tie bar, allowing the point to be held over against the spring.
 
bobg

bobg

Registered
3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
Good one Rob, my efforts with these springs would have done a "Harold" (had someone's eye out) if I'd continued, something to do with 7 1/4" fingers and G scale I think, besides I've run out of springs again for the time being.

I found the main difficulty after the weight changing for each set was the distance that the crossbar has to move (around 6mm).

I still have a few sets of points left to sort out, but at least I can run round my terminus without a signalman now.

Time to go testing again.:D
 
G

Glengrant

Registered
24 Oct 2009
11,031
11
NE Scotlamd
I am reading this with much interest. I have fitted, with much grief, two LGB motors to my G45 points. It too ages to get things to work. I did not use the adapter plate. I could not, at first, get the throw to operate the full distance. I did all sorts of adjustments below the points, shims, easing off of retaining screws, then finally I got the things to work by removing the spring under that plastic plate between the blades, then it worked. They have survived one winter. Absolute cleaning away any sort of debris is essential, and need constant attention. So now, without the assistance of any spring, the switch blades sit neatly into the stock rail recess. How long will this last? I do not know. I have a feeling that some of you proper engineers, which I am not, will look askance at this "make-do" setup. Your comments will be welcome (not too rude please)
 
bobg

bobg

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Middle Earth
Well further to what I said previously I have now motorised my terminus (Trent Town) I DID use the prescribed adaptor plates, which come with a small plate with a hole and a slot. The hole is a press fit on the point crossbar and the slot loose fit on the motor peg. The over-centre spring is left in place and they work 100%. The only minor problem I had was to make sure that the slotted plate was centralised or binding on the peg caused sticking. I totally agree with your comments on making sure everything is kept spotless. I have found that WD40 or another lube just collects dirt and the best is silicon furniture polish, which dries leaving a slippery film.

I have not abandoned sprung points, there are still two out on the system. They are sprung with the floppy disc springs mentioned above and also seem to be above satifactory in terms of operation. We will see what transpires over their first winter.
 
W

Wobbleboxer

Trains! and former caravanner (hence the sign on)
27 Oct 2009
703
0
Northants, UK
bobg, just to confirm you are now using LGB motors on Peco points with Peco adapter plates AND have left the original springs in the points and all is working OK?

The reason I ask is that I am in the same position but haven't actually laid anything yet, I just have all the components. But playing around in the workbench I was doubting whether there is enough oomph in the motor to overcome the original spring, so was considering something like the PC disc spring option. Maybe once I get them laid it will all be fine. What are you powering the motors with by the way? I'm using an Aristo TE and was planning to use their accessory receiver with about 15-18DC.
 
bobg

bobg

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3 May 2010
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Middle Earth
P.M.ed Colin.

Yes Peco G45 points and LGB motors. Powered by an old LGB controller from the D.C. 18v side.
 
M

MR SPOCK

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25 Oct 2009
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Cornwall uk
cornwallrailroad.webs.com
[align=center]I took out the centre over spring, and then fitted a basic coil spring to one side of the connector rod, this make the blades spring back to the desired setting, you may have to adjust the tension a bit as light weight stock may ride up and derail,
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