How are you using fiber optics?

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by kf4jqd, Jan 25, 2001.

  1. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member

    Hello everyone:

    I would like to know how you are using fiber optics? I want to experiment with them on my layout. Here are some questions I have.

    1. Do you use one light source?
    2. If you do use one light source. How do you get the different colors for signal lights?
    3. I have installed fiber optics in schools. I have never seen them(fiber) painted. Can that be done?
    4. How do you attach it to your light source?

    When I helped install fiber optics for a local Tech College. We use $1Million test equipment. The light source has to be right on for telecommunications. Plus we used lasers. The machine that cost $100thousand to put the connectors on. So I want to know how are you doing this cost effectively? I have been using L.E.D.'s. They work out great. But I would like to brag that I have fiber optics on the layout too! PLEASE help!!!!

    Andy
  2. Railery

    Railery Member

    1. U can use one light source with many strands grouped together than spreading out to where u want them. Or u can use multiple light sources around the layout. i know a 25 watt bulb makes a good light source. U can use 12 volt bulbs to, for example, adding ditch lights in older athern engines.
    2. Use a colored filament paper to change colors. Just like the filaments used in spotlights. Sometimes called gels.
    3. i know u can paint the outside black and leave the tip clear. i've never seen anyone paint the ends.
    4. using glue on the outside edge to attach. Not on the tip.

    I've read an article where u make a cardboard wheel with a few holes punched out and colored gels put in each hole. Attach this to a slow motor so it turns in front of your light source. Run your fibers to each of the holes but not fastened to, and then run the fibers up to your sign or whatever. This causes the sign to flash different colors. Looks sharp.
  3. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    The using of fibre Optics was discussed in the HO forum, check it out.
  4. vanda32547

    vanda32547 Member

  5. Ray Marinaccio

    Ray Marinaccio Active Member

    I've been using fiber optics for locomotive marker lights.
    I heat the end to make the bulb and drill small holes in an LED, insert the strand and super glue them in. You could use multi color LEDs to change colors.
  6. shortliner

    shortliner Member

    Cut the input end square and smooth, and superglue it to the LED. Paint the LED and fibre where it joins black. You can either heat the output end to make a "Bulb", or cut it and polish the end with metal polish and cardboard - You can also use "lucite" (here in UK called perspex) and apply light to a polished edge, scratches on the back eg writing, will "glow", and make illuminated signs, when seen from the front. You need to write in reverse!!
    Shortliner(Jack)away up here in the Highlands

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