Friday, February 26, 2016

It Works!

The new panels at Big Chimney and Cedar Falls Jct. have been installed and... hit the drum roll please... THEY WORK! Not that I had any doubt about whether or not the SBS components would operate as advertised. The question was whether or not yours truly could hook everything up correctly and have it actually perform as it was designed. And so far, everything looks OK.

The photo below shows the new panel installed at Big Chimney. Note the repeater signals on the fascia. The westbound signals on the cantilevered signal bridge at the west end of Big Chimney can be difficult to see and the dwarfs can't be seen from the aisle. Repeater signals were necessary to insure that crews would know what aspects were being displayed.

In the photo above, the turnout at the west end of Big Chimney is lined for the main and there are at least two clear blocks heading west. In the photo below, the turnout is lined for the siding and there are two clear blocks westbound.

In the photo below, the turnout at the west end of Big Chimney is lined for the siding and the turnout at Petersburg Jct. is lined for the branch. The name of the aspect shown for the siding is Approach and the indication is Proceed prepared to stop at the next signal. The westbound crew can expect to find a Stop indication on the westbound main signal at Petersburg Jct..

Last up is a shot of the new panel at Cedar Falls Jct. The repeater signal shows the aspect for the westbound main signal which isn't visible from the aisle. A bit of touch-up paint is needed on the fascia around the panel.

These two panels took an inordinate amount of time to complete due to the repeater signals that had to be wired up. The next three panels are fairly simple and should go together much more quickly.

I need to thank Gerry Albers, who is the mastermind behind SBS, for all of his time, effort and support in getting the RCS cards up and running. His patience with my lack of electrical knowledge and never ending questions has been a Godsend, and everything you've seen that's either signal or push-button route related has been a result of his help. But even more special than all of the help has been the friendship- thanks a million, Gerry.



  1. Nice setup Tom, love the signal indications on the panel.

  2. Thanks, Greg. I think that MI covered hopper car is finally about to happen. Stay tuned.

  3. Very nice Tom...very professional indeed. These panels certainly convey a ton of information to the operator. However, the operator better be on the ball and up on his rules qualification, ha ha. Good stuff.

    1. Thanks, Mike. I'm also re-doing the signs on the fascia to look more like the new panels. Sometimes it's two steps forward, one step back...


  4. Fantastic work Tom, I love the repeater signals on the panel something that I want to do for our layout with some masts that will face the opposite direction to the aisle.
    I can appreciate the work you have put in behind those panels and the fascia, signalling is a major commitment to implement on a layout. Jas...