Hump Yard Purveyance Turnout Control?

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Railthumper, Nov 26, 2005.

  1. Railthumper

    Railthumper New Member

    Hello all,

    Has anyone had any experience (direct or indirect) with the Humpyard Purveyance turnout control lever kit? Here's the link:

    It looks like it works on the "choke pull/wire-in-tube" concept. I'd like to hear from anyone who has either used this contraption or the oft' seen "choke-pulls", particularly if they could compare their operation/installation/reliability with conventional electrical switch machines like say the Tortoise. Also would a signal-routing board still be needed since the position of the levers are visible?

    My thinking is if I was to go this route [​IMG] , maybe it would be better for reliability sake to use micro snap-switches instead of the brass wire contacts [provided in the kit] for frog power/signalling?

  2. zedob

    zedob Member

    I have never even heard of them before, but I like them, alot. I was thinking about installing some over size switchstands on the facia of my layout (I saw it in a MRRer mag in the eary '70's and always thought it was a neat idea). I'm tempted to buy one just to see how well it works.

    Thanks for the link!:thumb:
  3. Railthumper

    Railthumper New Member

    Thanks Zedob!! This looks like my first "contribution" back to the forum [​IMG] .

    Still looking for anyone willing to share their experiences of wire-in-cable turnout control verses electric motor control and some insight into their reasoning why they may have selected one over the other.

  4. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    My reason for not using twin-coil switch machines was that I handlay my track. My turnouts were spiked rail - Code 70 in HO - on wood ties with the only PCB being the throw rod. I wasn't sure the turnouts would stand up for long to the jolt of a twin-coil switch machine. This was 25 years ago. I had planned on using a system using Nichrome wire (which expands when heated) and a spring to throw my turnouts. I went electrical because I needed contacts to control frog polarity, and I'm an electrical engineer anyway. I never actually built the Nichrome wire machines, but did install the toggle switches to control the machines and polarity. I just used my fingers to throw the turnouts until I tore the layout up.

    Fast forward to present. I'm handlaying track again, and again the only PCB in my turnouts is the throwbar (or throwbar reinforcement under the ballast). There are slow motion switch machines (Tortoise, etc), twin-coil machines, push rod and slide switch systems, wire-in-a-tube systems (Humpyard is a nice commercial version), and hand throws - all available with contacts.

    I will not use the twin-coil with hand-laid turnouts, but they work well (and I have used them) with commerical turnouts, and they have great wiring flexibility with multiple control positions easily accomplished. Very reliable, especially if powered by capacitive discharge system. You do here them "snap".

    I have seen slow motion machines in use. They are relatively expensive and noisy when throwing, but work well. Wiring options, especially for multiple control locations, are sometimes a little more difficult to understand than twin coil, but just as easily implemented.

    The push-rod and slide switch and wire-in-a-tube are inexpensive in a do-it-yourself form (but pretty pricey in commercial versions) but give you the advantage of locating your control to the fascia.

    Hand throws typically are mounted beside the turnout, and are simple and cheap. However, you need the "hand of God" reach in for any turnouts not near the edge of the benchwork.

    Since you have to have some form of mechanical linkage at the turnout in any case, what system you use is really personal preference and how many locations you need to control a given turnout from. Electrical machines give you much greater freedom in locating the controls, and multiple locations are easily achieved. Mechanical systems allow you to feel the throw of the turnout, but are limited to one control site per turnout.

    yours in switching

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