Peco Auxiliary Switches

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by bigdonnie, Dec 16, 2004.

  1. bigdonnie

    bigdonnie Member

    I just finished building and wiring the control panel to my N scale coffee table layout --- pics to come.

    I have used auxiliary switches on the turnout motors to power bipolar LEDS on the panel to indicate turnout positions.

    I have 10 auxiliary switches --- 7 work very well regardless of turnout position, 2 power the LED in one turnout position only and the last one doesn't work at all :)confused: ). As well, for a couple of the switches in one direction only, sometimes the LED will work and sometimes not.

    Here's what I think the problem is with these switches. Peco has designed them to be used for either HO or N turnouts (which makes sense), but because the total movement of an N turnout (and therefore the auxiliary switch itself) is only about half of the movement for an HO turnout, I suspect that there is a very fine line between good and bad contact within the switch (I should have taken a picture of the insides of one of them to make this clearer).

    Couple of questions:

    - has anyone else used these aux switches for an N scale application and run into the same problem?
    - if so, did you find a way of resolving the problem so you got proper contact in both positions?

    I think I'm going to make up my own slider contacts to replace the Peco ones --- the actual contact area is very, very small

  2. sputnik

    sputnik Member

    I had a similar problem with a couple of them (I use the same switches to route power). Before I secured the switches to the turnout machines, I tested them, and I turned the malfunctioning switches around, and things worked well after that. Other than getting glue in one of them, I have had no problems since.

  3. bigdonnie

    bigdonnie Member

    Just to make sure I understand what you did --- you rotated the copper (brass?) 180 degrees so that the 2 opposing contact legs were now on the other side of the switch?
  4. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    Also try spraying them with electrical contact cleaner from the autoparts store. Fred
  5. sputnik

    sputnik Member

    I don't think so.

    To explain further, I did not disassemble the Peco switch in any way. I first permantently mounted the turnout machine to the turnout and tested it's operation. Then I slipped the Peco switch onto the turnout machine (there are two types of Peco switches that attach to the bottom of their turnout machines, I used the cheaper, thinner, "slide" type of switch, and I can hunt down a part number if you need me to), and tested it. When it didn't work, I took the switch off of the machine, simply rotated it 180 degrees, slipped it back on, and tested it again. Whether it worked the first or second time, once it worked, I used a little ACC to secure the switch to the turnout machine, and installed it on my layout.


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