Author Topic: Modutrak Searchlight Signals (WAS: Building BeNscale Signals)  (Read 21215 times)

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peteski

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #61 on: August 22, 2014, 09:00:54 PM »
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Ryan,  the RYG LED I pointed you too uses the tru-green chip in it (525 nm), not the cheaper yellowish green.  It is very close to the green used in the signals (which are slightly on the bluish side).  Mike mentioned using blue tape over the LED. Not sure how the red and yellow will look when shining through blue tape.

Mike:  you can contact Mouser to ask if they can order those red/white LEDs for you (and what is the minimum quantity).  Or you could order them directly from the manufacturer (for probably higher price than Mouser's):
http://www.kingbrightusa.com/product.asp?catalog_name=LED&product_id=AAA3528QWDSURKS-AMT
http://www.kingbrightusa.com/product.asp?catalog_name=LED&product_id=AAA3528QWDSURKS

If you don't need too many, you might also be able to talk to their sales staff and tell them that you would be interesting in a (free) sample.  ;)
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ChrisKLAS

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #62 on: August 22, 2014, 11:44:57 PM »
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Unfortunately BeNscale, like so many other sole proprietor signal companies before, seems to be fading away.  I've been trying to get a big order for about 4 months so that we can get the signals going on the Franksville/Caledonia leg of the layout.

Glad it's not just me. I placed (and prepaid for) a not-so-large order of 5 signals back in April and haven't heard a word. My two e-mails looking for a status update (both in the last month) have gone unanswered.  :facepalm:
« Last Edit: August 23, 2014, 12:04:52 AM by ChrisKLAS »

ryan_wilkerson

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #63 on: August 23, 2014, 01:51:08 AM »
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Good to know, thank you. I had written down some notes from another post last year that the ideal ranges for 3 color signals are:
Red: 625-628nm
Yellow: 589-593nm
Green: 522-527nm

The BIVAR you listed is just right: 631nm, 591 nm, 525 nm
It looks like it takes 4 wires...one for each color and a single common.

I'll get some and then compare them to a 1:1 signal and see how it looks  :)

Ryan,  the RYG LED I pointed you too uses the tru-green chip in it (525 nm), not the cheaper yellowish green.  It is very close to the green used in the signals (which are slightly on the bluish side).  Mike mentioned using blue tape over the LED. Not sure how the red and yellow will look when shining through blue tape.

Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #64 on: September 22, 2014, 12:04:51 PM »
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With a full redesign of the signals to match Milwaukee prototype, a new PCB base was needed.  This one will accept all three ladder spacings, allow SMD resistors to be mounted right to the base, and take care of the transition from magnet wire to 26ga wire to the signal driver.

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New etchings should be in next week, and hopefully some lost-wax castings as well to take care of the hand-hole base and finial.
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Scottl

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #65 on: September 22, 2014, 02:28:48 PM »
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That base circuit board looks perfect for different installs.

Several people mentioned upthread that BeNscale seems to be out of communication.  Any updates from anyone with orders?  I was just about to order something.  I hope he is still operating his business.  These products look very nice.

peteski

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #66 on: September 22, 2014, 04:04:19 PM »
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With a full redesign of the signals to match Milwaukee prototype, a new PCB base was needed.  This one will accept all three ladder spacings, allow SMD resistors to be mounted right to the base, and take care of the transition from magnet wire to 26ga wire to the signal driver.

New etchings should be in next week, and hopefully some lost-wax castings as well to take care of the hand-hole base and finial.


Now we're talking!  It makes so much more sense to use SMD resistors.  The brass bits will also dramatically add to the appearance.  Nice job Mike!   Did you design the PC board and did the artwork for the brass bits?

Where did you have the PC boards made?   I have a hard time finding a place which will make a prototype-quantities of very small circuit boards (of the size you had made).
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railnerd

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #67 on: September 22, 2014, 08:16:56 PM »
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Where did you have the PC boards made?   I have a hard time finding a place which will make a prototype-quantities of very small circuit boards (of the size you had made).

that purple sure looks like OSHPark to me…

-Dave

Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #68 on: September 23, 2014, 10:38:54 AM »
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That base circuit board looks perfect for different installs.

Several people mentioned upthread that BeNscale seems to be out of communication.  Any updates from anyone with orders?  I was just about to order something.  I hope he is still operating his business.  These products look very nice.

No, but I stopped trying to contact him 2 months ago.  He was busy over the past 6 months.

Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #69 on: September 23, 2014, 10:44:34 AM »
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Now we're talking!  It makes so much more sense to use SMD resistors.  The brass bits will also dramatically add to the appearance.  Nice job Mike!   Did you design the PC board and did the artwork for the brass bits?

Where did you have the PC boards made?   I have a hard time finding a place which will make a prototype-quantities of very small circuit boards (of the size you had made).

I was using PCB2PCB for the boards I was designing, but these are OSHpark and designed by another member and electronic engineer, Bob.  I like leaving this stuff up to the experts if I can help it.

I did the design on the brass parts (Solidworks) and layout for the etchings (AutoCAD).

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Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #70 on: September 27, 2014, 11:01:39 PM »
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The new etchings showed up today.  PPD-Ltd only had phosphor bronze in .006 and .010, so I requested nickel silver instead since all the tabs were designed at .008" thickness.  The nickel silver is a little stiffer than brass, and solderable unlike stainless steel.  So it is a fine material choice.



These parts are much more delicate than the BeNscale ones, but side by side are worth the extra care needed during assembly.  Here's the first signal side-by-side with an old BeNscale signal:


Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #71 on: September 27, 2014, 11:03:14 PM »
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peteski

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #72 on: September 27, 2014, 11:06:14 PM »
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Looking good Mike!
But to me the platforms look odd. On the 1:1 signals, do they also extend forward of the mast?  On the similar signals used by B&M the platforms did not extend beyond the mast.
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Sokramiketes

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #73 on: September 27, 2014, 11:16:52 PM »
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Looking good Mike!
But to me the platforms look odd. On the 1:1 signals, do they also extend forward of the mast?  On the similar signals used by B&M the platforms did not extend beyond the mast.

Ye of little faith!



These are Milwaukee Road style, so now a match to what we actually need for Modutrak.

bbussey

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Re: Building BeNscale Signals
« Reply #74 on: September 28, 2014, 12:20:19 AM »
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Sweet!
Bryan Busséy
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