Reader Wayne Smith asked about the modifications my friend Chris Abbott made to the Sunset Valley RR garden scale switch stands I use to control the switches on my layout.
(Click on the photo to read more about these stands)
Since reading your blog on the switch stands, I have purchased one of the switch stands to see if it would work on my layout.
However, can you advise how Chris made the connection at the base of the switch stand to the torque tube/crank, which is fed down through your wood base.
I assume he must machine it from the square section into a round section to make the joint.
Look forward to your comments and/or some photographs of how this works.
I asked Chris if he could provide some comments and since they may be of use to others, I’m quoting Chris here:
Wayne, sorry to disappoint, but there was actually very little machining involved. A short section of K&S round tubing was slipped over the square at the bottom of the turnout stand’s shaft to extend its length. This round tubing was cross-drilled to match the hole in the stand’s shaft where a long set-screw had been removed. A flat piece of brass bar was soldered to the bottom of this short tube to act as the throw lever for the Bullfrog. An even shorter tube section, just slightly larger than the shaft extension, was pressed into the pine shelf material to act as a guide for the shaft extension.
Chris also provided the photos, below (thanks Chris!)…
(Note the brass cube at the base of the shaft, between the legs of the switch stand. As it comes from Sunset Valley RR, this has a long set-screw in it that’s drilled so that one can insert a wire to link the stand directly to the head bar on a garden-scale turnout)
(Looking at the underside of a shelf. The lever has been drilled in a couple of places to give us some options when connecting the clevis that is part of the R/C aircraft control rod system used to control the Bullfrog. Note also that the extension tube passes through a larger brass tube that’s pressed into the shelf to act as a guide. Once installed on the layout, a small shot of WD40 sprayed onto the extension tube and allowed to work into the space between it and the guide tube keeps everything running smoothly)
(The extension tube projects from both sides of the shelf. The switch stand will be mounted with small screws onto a pair of ties glued to either side of the extension tube, then linked to the extension tube with a screw. This allows the whole mechanism to be disassembled if necessary – although the stands were mounted on the layout at the end of February 2012 and there’s never been any reason to take them apart)
Wayne – it was a very good question: Thanks for asking and I’m glad Chris and I could provide an answer!