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Bracket Signals.

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  • Bracket Signals.

    Is there any update re the bracket signals in OO gauge?. I went to the Model Railway exhibition at Alexandra Palace in 2016 and was told that they would be available at the end of 2016/beginning of 2017. As they did not appear I sent emails to Dapol but got no reply. In June last year the Hornby Magazine contacted you on my behalf and was advised “The bracket signals are now in tooling and we expect to have product out to market later this year or early next year.” That was one year ago. Is there any update that you can provide to your subscribers?

  • #2
    Dapol Junction signals.
    I have a sneaky suspicion that Dapol are aware of the problems relating to the semaphore signals currently available. As I related in my post "Semaphre signalling in modelling".
    The problems involve a production fault in the actuation method, whereby the motor does not always engage to actually move the signal arm. I also pointed out that the current wiring system is partially superfluous, and could both be simplified and improved to provide positive detection of which position the signal arm is actually in !!!

    Semaphore Junction signals are however a minefield in respect of British outline. It must be understood that basically a seperate signal arm is required for each optional track available at the junction ahead. Further the signal arm for the primary route should in most (but no all) cases be higher than the semaphore arms relating to subsiduary routes. Also, depending on the layout of the junction ahead, the "subsiduary" arms must be to the left, or right or both sides of the higher primary route signal. Realistically few "Junction semaphore" signal gantries were "Standard products" and in real life a high proportion of sempahore junction signal gantries had to be specially made to suit a specific location.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Worting Junction box (02).jpg Views:	1 Size:	160.4 KB ID:	7456
    Above: Worting Junction (near Basingstoke). About the simplest "Junction signals" I can find a photo of. The rear view of two signal gantries seen above the rear of the "Battle of Britain" steam hauled Exeter to London Waterloo train are: Left gantry as viewed, is for trains approaching from the Salisbury/Exeter direction. The right gantry is for trains approaching the junction from the Southampton/Bournemouth line which decends down the hill from Battledown flyover in the extreme distance.

    As these two routes are approaching what becomes a four track mainline from here to London, each train needs to be signalled either to the Up Slow or Up Fast. The Up Fast is the track the steam loco is on, while the Up Slow is the track passing immediately in front of the signalbox to the steam locomotives right.

    Important points to note are the height of each signal arm. The higher arm on both gantries relates to the straight ahead route, so telling the driver no speed reduction is necessary. The lower arm on each gantry therefore clearly signifies that a speed reduction will be necessary from "Line speed", as in both cases a train would have to use a crossover to change tracks from Fast to local or visa versa.

    Other important points of interest. The point the steam loco is actually passing over is part of an "Emergency crossover" for which NO signals were provided. Its use required the signalman to use flags, as it is convienently outside the signalbox window. The signalbox itself is a LSWR type 4 box, available in OO scale model form, from Kernow Models in Cornwall. The train on the left is the rear of a "Hampshire" 2H or 3H unit, heading from the Down Slow onto the Down Southampton line. So all rolling stock in this picture is available in OO scale, including the Bulleid and Maunsell coaching stock.

    Note also the 65mph stencil speed sign with an arrow below the numerals. This is for trains crossing from the Down Fast (to the right of the sign) to the track the DEMU is on, (Down Southampton line). The photo dates to the 1957-61 period as the "new" DEMU has a tail lamp and white shades (not red). Tail lamps were replaced on BR(SR) (Post 1951 design) multiple units with red tailshades from 1962, on journeys wholly within SR territory.

    As the Dapol signalling range already includes certain Southern signal types, I would suggest the Junction gantries seen in the picture provide a good subject to model !!!!

    The Duke 71000
    Last edited by The Duke 71000; 28 June 2018, 17:26.


    • Joel Dapol
      Joel Dapol commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for your comments and suggestions. Our guys have worked hard on the mechanism and electronics for the new junction signals and hope to show something really positive on here soon ( a couple of weeks)

  • #3
    Regarding the last comment from Joel Dapol is there an update regarding this matter yet?


    • #4
      Regarding the post from Joel Dapol dated 28 June which stated that he was hoping to show something really positive soon (a couple of weeks), is there anything to update?


      • The Duke 71000
        The Duke 71000 commented
        Editing a comment
        The possible slow response by Dapol to your desire for more information about the proposed Bracket (junction) signals, may be tied into the current isssues concerning these models that I have re-iterated in my latest Post below..
        I think we are all hoping that Dapol will eventually produce Bracket Junction signals, but such models present further issues concerning realistic control, mechanically, electrically and from the point of view of interlocking...

    • #5
      Stealing a March !

      Dapol being the only current British outline manufacturer (I'm aware of) with a range of electrically operable semaphore signals, have within their grasp a head start in solving a serious headache faced by many modellers. It is quite obvious that even many exhibition layouts in Britain have serious issues in understanding how to impliment semaphore signalling realistically on their layouts. This should not be the case, whether you use DCC or more traditional 12v DC systems, all comers can be easily catered for. But as yet this semaphore signal range is hamstrung by two problems involving the current mechanism. These are:

      1. The motor whirrs but the signal arm does not actually move in approximately 10% of attempts to change the signal. So if you cannot actually see the signal from where you are sitting, you cannot tell if it has changed. Which is going to make you look like a bit of a lemon on an exhibition layout, if your trains go hurtling past signals at danger !!!

      2. The wiring system as provided prevents the user from interlocking the signal to either points or other relevant signals, so preventing realistic operation of the signals.

      For example in its simplist real life form, a semaphore signalbox has a minimum of a "Distant", a "Home" and a "Starter" signal, positioned in that order, on each "Running line". The fundamental rule of semaphore (Absolute Block) signalling requires that both the "Home" and "Starter" signals MUST be in the clear position BEFORE the "Distant" signal can be pulled to clear. This situation is guaranteed by the mechanical interlocking in the lever frame of a real life signalbox.

      Therefore the current "Momentary contact" wiring method via the two yellow wires. Prevents any real life method of operation of these models. The models must as a result be altered so that a positive 12v constant supply changes the signal (preferably to clear) and switching the power OFF changes the signal back to danger. Danger being the "Normal" position of semaphore signals. This would allow these models to be connected to a "DCC semaphore signal actuation module" where the Module also provides the basic interlocking. So solving the nighmare of many modellers, unfamiliar with the complexities of real life semaphore signalling. For those of us still in the "Analogue" world a simple ON/OFF two wire feed would allow the models to be connected to a simple on/off switch or via relays to provide whatever type of "interlocking" we desire or need !!!

      The Duke 71000


      • #6
        I have just received a newsletter from Hatton's. They have given reference numbers for three motorised GWR junction bracket signals. One is a two arm left hand junction bracket and the others are left and right hand single brackets. I hope a two arm right hand junction bracket will be produced. Can anyone confirm this?


        • #7
          Since my last post I've noticed that Hatton's have another entry for a bracket signal - 4L-001-005 Signal - motorised, GWR bracket. Maybe this will become the right hand junction bracket two arms.


          • #8
            For those that may require them the OO Gauge Servo operated signal user guide is attached.....
            Attached Files

            Dapol Staff Member