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Bernard

Building Lighting Kit

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Darren Jeffries

It's a good product but quite expensive. I am sure you could (if technically minded enough) put together something with more capacity for less money.

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Bernard

I agree, this can be quite costly especially if you want to light up a street or town plus where do you get extra light units?

 

While we're on the subject of lighting, does anybody have any advice on a practical way to light a street? On my first layout, I had the bulbs mounted on the board with a screw in socket connected to parallel wires under the board. I think I've seen someone mount the lights in the buildings with some sort of connector on the bottom of the building that went into a plug on the layout. Any ideas?

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Martijn Meerts

Wiring buildings can be done a lot cheaper and more realistic, but it requires quite a bit of work and experimenting ;)

 

Buildings need to be divided into separate rooms, each room will get a LED (or more than 1). If you want you can connect the various rooms to various decoder outputs (if you control them digitally), so you can turn on and off separate rooms etc.

 

I still need to experiment with it, but I have a system called "Light @ Night", which is an interface connected to a parallel port on a pc. You can connect up to 7 light boards, and each light board has like 40 separate outputs for LED's. Each output can get it's own effects, and you can combine outputs for more advanced effects such as traffic lights etc. That's all theoretical though, I haven't actually tried the thing =)

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Bernard

to2leo - That is an unusual way to buy lighting in a reel. It looks simple to apply and it really unique! Thanks for sharing.

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Martijn Meerts

I'd say for houses it's not that useful, but for say a factory hall or a large loco shed it's great.

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CaptOblivious

It might be awesome for lighting station platforms...what are the dimensions of those?

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Martijn Meerts

I think the biggest problem will be that you have to somehow hide the strip itself. Just painting it wouldn't work due to the components on the strip.

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SubwayHypes

I think i saw Jummamit on youtube use some kind of LED tape in his subway tunnel movies, have you guys seen those.

 

Man i wish i could get into the interior lighting, where should one start???  I have small experiance with LED lights in cars but those were always plug and play, im assuming i have to make some sort of circuit board.  Man i wish there was a N Scale Trains for dummies.

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CaptOblivious

I think i saw Jummamit on youtube use some kind of LED tape in his subway tunnel movies, have you guys seen those.

 

Man i wish i could get into the interior lighting, where should one start???  I have small experiance with LED lights in cars but those were always plug and play, im assuming i have to make some sort of circuit board.  Man i wish there was a N Scale Trains for dummies.

 

Well, you don't need to use a circuit board, exactly. Depends on what you're doing.

 

Best bet is to acquire a DC power supply (cheap at Radio Shack! Better to get a battery holder than a wall-wart, though.), a selection of LEDs (don't forget the data sheet! You need to know the characteristics, esp the "forward voltage" and "forward current"), a selection of 1/4 watt resistors, and finally some solderless breadboard and jumper wires (for playing with). (And a way to connect the power supply to the breadboard)

 

Then, consult these two resources:

 

First, beg borrow or steal a copy of the All New Electronics Self-Teaching Guide

 

Since the voltage drop across an LED is much less than the 12V your power supply provides, you'll need to use a resistor with your LED(s). This site tells you how to select one:

http://www.hebeiltd.com.cn/?p=zz.led.resistor.calculator

 

I know, I know, the answer is "Go read a book." But in this case, I promise you, the results are totally worth it.

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serenityFan

I am getting ready to install some tomytec diorama buildings onto the layout, and although I am not going to light them yet, I would like to 'future-proof' them so I can do it later on. These buildings have removable roofs so I can reach the interior without any problems.

 

So I am thinking installing wires from the inside of the building running down through the surface to a point below the layout where all the wires will terminate. Would this be enough or can anyone advise me on what other 'preparation' I need to install ...  :cheesy

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Bernard

How about this as an alternate. Instead of running the wires through the building all the way through to the underside of the layout, use a connector instead?

What I did with some of my buildings is I attached the light inside the building and had an electrical connector (in the USA Radio Shack) attached to the wires. Then at the underside of my layout I ran 2 parallel wires (+ and -)

from the transformer to the area I was going to have building. From that area I then spliced in 2 wires that ran up through the layout to where the building would sit and attached a connector to those 2 wire. The final step is to plug in the 2 connectors and you have lights. I like this method because if you ever have to do maintenance on a building, you can easily remove it from the layout.

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