Thursday, February 4, 2021

Scenery for Berkshire Junction part 6

Point rodding

As mentioned in part 5 this interlocking junction scene would appear incomplete without some point rodding detail. Adding the mechanical parts and rodding could also offer a visual indication how the junction switches and home signals were operationally connected to the continuously manned signal station tower during the pre-CTC era of the layout.  

The question was were mechanical parts available in HO scale for this detail beside the pipe rodding? No parts turned up during search in the USA but numerous parts are available in the UK. It appears that adding point rodding detail is popular in the UK, many 3D printed parts are available plus brass parts are also available to make functioning point rodding. Many of the highly detailed portable layouts in the UK feature a signal box (tower) with very detailed point rodding.

The part most needed was the rollers for rods, MODELU in the UK offers many 3D printed detail parts including rollers. These OO scale rollers appear similar to US prototypes and are available printed in side by side connected rollers see below.  

Gangs of 8 rollers were purchased then cut to needed number of rollers. Tichy .015" phosphor bronze wire scales to the prototype pipe well and fits nicely thru the holes in the 3D printed rollers.

It is 8 actual feet to the furthest signal from the tower structure, that's a lot of rollers!

Some detail at 2 of the junction switches.

Berkshire Junction was a very weedy place during the era of the layout as one can see below, this may aid in covering up inaccuracies and or detail shortcomings of the modeled point rodding although it may be a shame to hide a weeks worth of work!

           J. W. Swanberg photo

The rodding that exits from the tower will have to be be connected to the ground rodding, to do this the structure will have to be permanently installed into the scene and that is the next step.