Light fittings for 5 inch Loco

  G41 Chief Commissioner

Location: Footplate of any K class
Anyone in the model scene got any hints or ideas on how to fit lighting into 1" scale lamps and cab?

What would be the best light fitting to use and how would it be best fitted?

Any ideas will be great thanks.

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  G41 Chief Commissioner

Location: Footplate of any K class
This was men't to say Fittings not Sightings....damn auto correct!

( title fixed - Dthead )
  Conspiracy Station Master

You don't state, size, scale or type of lamps you want to use.  Picture would also be helpful.  

There are a few options for lighting, grain of wheat globes, lilliput globes, LED's etc etc.  Depends on many variables.
  G41 Chief Commissioner

Location: Footplate of any K class
Thanks David for fixing up the title.

As for the lamp, its a 1 1/4" scale of the LMS type loco lamp (See link for similar product)

It is a brass casting with a hollow centre, and the base is left open. The size of the opening is 7/16th of an inch squared.

Looking at running it off a 12v gel pack battery.

Also, cab lights will be mounted from the underside of the roof, one either side and a small LED type for the Gauge Glass.
  R704 Chief Commissioner

Location: Who cares you ain't gonna visit!
Hi Matt,
I'm doing something similar atm on the 12" stuff,
my question would be, how are you running the power?
what kind of plug would you use or are they permanently mounted?
i can think of a sealed system where each lamp is self contained with a column of the small button batteries contained within the top of the lamp, and the whole thing on a small custom PC board. for markers LED's at a reduced voltage would be ok.

depending the lens diameter try to find a small cheap torch close in size, this will give you a globe, socket and a reflector.

  TomBTR Chief Train Controller

Location: near Sydney
depending the lens diameter try to find a small cheap torch close in size, this will give you a globe, socket and a reflector.
Be careful with torches. I used a LED head torch for the headlight of this toy tram.

Although these torches can be used in wet weather they do not seem to be designed for extended periods in the open air. The first one I used developed a fault on the PCB. The next one has a waterproof plastic cover over the reflector, switch and battery compartment. I'll see if it lasts longer.


edit: image bug ok today
  G41 Chief Commissioner

Location: Footplate of any K class
Thanks all for your replies.

As for the lamps Nick, they currently are not permanently fitted, though, I may look at it. If I can find a neat plug the I would prefer to have them removable.

I need them bright enough to be effective for night time running.
  J502 Station Staff

Location: Sydney
Matt, I use Lilliput globes available from Jacar or RS Components. They are a M5 thread if I remember. They are better than LED because of the colour temperature and omnidirectional beam. Make a lamp base insert out of brass, drill a blind hole and tap for the globe. Drill a hole through the base to take the wire. Make a nylon washer the root dia. of the threaded hole and place it in the hole. This is the insulator between positive and negative. Buy some stranded teflon wire (temperature resistant). Push the wire up through the hole in the bottom of the lamp and insulator and strip about 10mm of insulation off the wire. Roll this 10mm into a tight ball and solder it. This is the contact for the globe. Pull it down into the base and make sure the ball sits on the nylon insulator and the teflon insulation of the wire goes through the nylon. Otherwise it will short out. Screw in the globe and  and secure the lampholder to the bottom of the maker light (10 or12 ba screws). The teflon wire is positive an the frame is negative. Lampholders for the cab and gauge glass can be done in the same way. This technique has worked well on the J for many years. I use a 12 volt 7AH alarm battery to power the 2 maker lights, headlight, cab and gauge glass lights. The headlight uses the most power and get about 15 hrs from a battery.
  J502 Station Staff

Location: Sydney
PS. The headlight is an incandescent prefocused torch globe.
  B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland
I'll just add my 2¼ cents worth.

I have three x 3 watt Cree warm white LEDs on my Maxitrak Planet. These are then fitted into 25mm diameter collimators (sort of a lens). The main headlight has a 10° beam, with the two lower ones having 25° beams. They are the correct colour and at night can light the track for over 50m ahead. Smaller diameter ones are available.

The Cree LEDs, collimators and LED drivers (for 12 volt) were found in the Jaycar / Electus catalogue.

As you can see in the daylight photo above, they really look the part.

The above photo was taken at Wandong in 2011 when I had only the one Cree LED headlight temporarily fitted to the Planet. Photo taken, hand held while the train was moving. I think this should demonstrate the effectiveness of the LEDs as headlights. Smile
  oneonefour Beginner

Location: Blue Mountains
Hi B 67,
LED's look great.
Could you please post some close up photos of your light fittings and show the way you wired them.
Which type of Cree LEDs did you use? XPG, XTE, XRE etc.
I'm trying to do the same for my Ride on Railways Hercules.
  B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland
No problems oneonefour. I'll do that a little later. I think there was only one kind of Cree LED available when I ordered mine, I seem to recall that the XPG arrived after I ordered mine. With technology constantly changing and improving, I'll have to check what I got via my old catalogue and see if it is still available. I remember that I originally wanted the 3 watt Cree LED for the main headlight and was going to use 1 watt Cree for the lower "ditch" lights. But the 1 Watt was discontinued, so I got all three as 3 watt. I just used wider angle collimators on them.

Will take some more photos to show what I've done and add them. In the meantime, I just discovered I have some "old" photos on my little-used flickr account. I've tried a few mounting methods and configurations. I'll add some better close-ups of how I did them soon.

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