NRSM_296_AS

 

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FLUSHMOUNT PUSH BUTTONS FOR STALL MOTOR CONTROL

 

I Firmly believe in “heads up” control of a model railroad.  Switch machines on the North River are controlled by switch stands right by the points so the crew does not have to search around for a control.  This unfortunately is not always feasible.  Some turnouts may be located out of arm’s reach at the back of the layout while others may be located in tight areas.  Also, it is not feasible to have a control panel running the full length of the table.

 

This creates a problem.  Commercial switches are designed to be mounted on a PC board or on a relatively thin control panel; nothing is available for direct mounting on a ¾” fascia board on the front of a layout.  This solution is a low-cost “standard” control that is almost flush mounted with NO sharp edges or corners to snag an operator following a train down the edge of a table with his radio controlled walk-around throttle.

 

  

  

   

   

NRSM_201_ASConstruction begins with a simple template, especially where several controllers may be required. This template will serve two functions.  First, it will standardize the hole or cutout and thus make installation, maintenance and replacement easier.  Second, it will also be used to standardize the size of the controls made as we will see later. 

Dimensions can vary according to the user so it is up to you, the reader, to experiment a bit and determine the size that suits you best.  Once you determine a size you should use it for all controls created.  CAUTION:  Please read through this carefully before to determine dimensions required

 

 

NRSM_204_ASThe body of the control it made from 3/16” thick lattice and mass-produced in a strip.  Cut the lattice for the body sides and use simple stripwood for the top and bottom.  Use a spacer to keep the side just far enough apart for the control

 

   

 

Add the LOW spacers at the back of the control.  These will position the switches to be either flush with the front cover, slightly protruding, or countersunk.      

     

 

NRSM_220_AS       

The control body can be “test fit” into the template to test for fit. The plug in the center represents the control that will eventually be installed in the center later. Note that there should be some “play” between the three parts to allow for some minor adjustments and interchangeability in parts later on.

NRSM_226_AS    

     The HIGH spacers are now added.  These also serve two functions.  First, when the perf board holding the switches is in place, they will allow a “floating” action.  This prevents binding of the switch buttons when everything is in place.  they also hold everything in place

    

NRSM_230_AS

This glass-filled epoxy board can be found under a number of different names such as keyboard, plugboard and perfboard.

It is the foundation of any electrical project.  This board is made by Vector Electronics with .042 holes spaced on a .100 x 100 grid.  Most components can be readily mounted on this spacing.

 

   

NRSM_236_AS     These switches come in two parts.  The switch itself (on right) measures about 9 x 9 millimeters and is perfect for stall motors.  Do not try to use it with twin-coil machines as it will not handle the current.  The cap (on the left) comes in a variety of colors including green, blue, white, red and black.

 

NRSM_240_AS  

  

     Notice the “slop” between the perf-board and the high spacers.  This floating action is intentional and will keep the buttons from binding against the front cover plate when installed

      

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The pushbuttons are installed in the body   

    

      

     

   

NRSM_255_AS     The “keepers” are installed next.  Inspect all joints at this point and give any glue used time to set up before going further so that the assembly will not fall apart if the buttons are pressed to hard.

      

   

NRSM_279_A1SThe faceplate is cut to size next.    The hole in the center should be just large enough for pushbutton assembly.  Note the counter-sunk holes in the corners.  Use flathead screws to prevent the snagging of anyone passing by.

 

 

NRSM_282_AS    

I used another small template to drill the four screw holes that will keep the completed pushbutton assembly in place.  This insures perfectly even spaced holes where you want them.  Just make sure you lay the plate flat against a spare flat piece of wood to avoid splintering the holes.

NRSM_285_B1S   

The control panel schematic lines are thin pieces of stripwood painted white and then glued in place.  Round the ends to prevent snagging. 

     

NRSM_296_AS  

      

   

This is how the final product will appear. 

 

 

       

   

   

 

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Bob Van Cleef, MMR

Last update   7/25/2012