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JR 500系

Flashing kits for Pantographs now finally available for sale!

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Posted (edited)

Sorry I've given up finding the original thread on this, but I know I saw this being discussed somewhere...

 

Anyhow, those flashing pantographs are now finally available for ordering, as a kit, made for Kato models presumably. Quite expensive for just one pantograph, and the LED is a little big... but nonetheless fun to add realism to your train, especially in night operations! 

 

http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10472689

 

Comes in a variety of types of flashes:

 

http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10472683

 

http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10472676

 

manufacturer's video here:

 

 

By   ExineTech エクシンテック  on youtube.

 

interesting!

 

 

* interesting point is in the translation on HS, especially for this statement; 

- Reproduce the shimmering panties while defrosting. 

 

I am like....   :lovestory:   -- shimmering panties?  :laughing3:

Edited by JR 500系
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Kabutoni   

- Reproduce the shimmering panties while defrosting. 

 

I am like....   :lovestory:   -- shimmering panties?  :laughing3:

 

Oh hell yeah, I'm defrosted already! xD

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I think I would prefer to have an accurate looking pantograph than one that has a massive lump on it that blinks intermittently.

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I think a bit of electrical know how would produce a far more elegant solution.  Still, quite fun.

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kvp   

I think a bit of electrical know how would produce a far more elegant solution.  Still, quite fun.

As much as i can gather from the info, it turns on at 50% of the throttle, which means around 6 volts. The circuit probably contains a diode bidge, a voltage regulator (like a 3.3V one) and a microcontroller that is flashing the led. 3.3V+~1V(ldo regulator)+1.4(diode bridge) = 5.7V turn on voltage. Program selection could be done by soldering certain tabls to select various settings bits. From an electrical standpoint, this is an elegant solution for any analog system and could probably be activated while stationary or at low speed with a Tomix CL controller.

 

The only ugly thing is the led on top, which is just a led on the end of two thin wires. There is a possiblility to use a smaller led, but i don't think you can do much with it. (besides mounting the led under the pantograph's shoe while still pointing it up to make it less intrusive)

 

On the other hand, these sparks are produced by two main factors: ice on the wire or electrical joints in the wire. For the ice cutter case, the random pattern under the pantograph is ok, while for the electrical joint case, the spark is stationary and always happens at the gap. In the second case, it would be possible to install the led on a catenary pole and use some form of pantograph sensor (like an ir beam) to trigger it. But imho it would not look as impressive as the fast moving sparks from the pantograph.

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cteno4   

It is a tough thing to do. One of those things that looks great at a distance but can fall apart when closer.

 

The led will be tough. Even a 0402 led is still like 8"x3"x3" scale and then you have more with the solder connections and magnet wire which is still going to be like 1" cable at best... I don't really see the wires, but in the video the pantograph is only in focus for a very brief time with limited depth of focus..

 

something very difficult to do.

 

Could potentiallly isolate the two sides of the pantograph to run power up with only plastic cross pieces and pickup, but that would be some fiddling.

 

Pantograph flashes are not something that is burned into my memory watching Shinkansens in person. I know I've seen them but one of those things that at 1:1 gives you a different mental impression on the minds eye and trying to trigger that at 1:150 just does not work so well. Some things just don't scale well to kick in our minds eye correctly and the model-reality does just not mesh for the effect desired.

 

Jeff

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Posted (edited)

I think these would look better on third rail emus, they seem to produce more sparks than pantographs.

Edited by Wonderbolt

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cteno4   

I think these would look better on third rail emus, they seem to produce more sparks than pantographs.

 

and would be much easier and more effective to implement! you are correct i do remember more sparks from third rail systems than pantograph in my visual memory.

 

jeff

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kvp   

There are lots of reasons for 3rd ral making more sparks. First the number of gaps is huge on a 3rd rail system, while an overhead wire tends to stay continous over long distances. Sparking usually happens on the make and break points, so stationary leds are better for these and since the shoes are usually on the bogies, a simple axle sensor is good for triggering them. Second reason is ice or other materias on the 3rd rail, usually a problem with top contact rails. They get dirtier faster than overhead wires because 3rd rail is closer to the ground and the top contact rail has a flat surface that can support anything that happens to fall on it. The led size is still a problem though, especiallly mounting them on bogies at shoe height.

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cteno4   

yes but the leds would be much easier to hide as 3rail pickups and wires pretty much hidden.

 

stationary would be cool but hard to time with the pantograph crossing the arm connection. i guess you could try to ping the pantograph with an ir sensor, but that may be really tough.

 

jeff

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Posted (edited)

While these LEDs make the train very realistic and a fun topic to talk about especially for those not into trains and do not know what those sparks represent, they are quite expensive... it costs around 60 USD for a typical 2 pantograph shinkansen train, or more if your train has more pantograph... imagine the 16-car 0 series with 8 pantographs!

 

The price is putting me off a little... at 60 USD, a train set can almost be bought...

Edited by JR 500系

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kvp   

The part cost is around 10 usd if you are willing to solder tiny smd components and internal lights are already installed so the pickups are present. It's essentially just a dcc light decoder programmed to run a preselected fixed effect in analog mode.

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Posted (edited)

Flashing pantographs is fun and all, but if it is not combined with an overhead line then it's a bit pointless I think. Are there overhead wires for KATO/TOMIX catenary poles, or do you have to fashion them yourself?

Edited by Yavianice

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kvp   

Flashing pantographs is fun and all, but if it is not combined with an overhead line then it's a bit pointless I think. Are there overhead wires for KATO/TOMIX catenary poles, or do you have to fashion them yourself?

Most japanese trains have imitation pantographs only, so they can't be used with a real overhead wire. If you install one yourself, then they will look funny riding way below the wire, so there are no wire kits for most japense poles. In N scale, they would be oversize, so leaving them off and having imitation pantographs is not just easier but looks better.

 

On the other hand, if you do have working catenary with spring loaded pantographs and you run your trains from it, then you will see plenty of real sparks.

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I think these would look better on third rail emus, they seem to produce more sparks than pantographs.

 

 

and would be much easier and more effective to implement! you are correct i do remember more sparks from third rail systems than pantograph in my visual memory.

 

jeff

 

At least on most Kato trains, the interiors already flicker like they use 3rd rail!  ;)

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