Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

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rustysparks
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Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:13 pm

Ok so got a set of ratio signals and I'm not too sure where to start

Do I have signals outbound and inbound? I guess I would?

For sidings I am going to scratchbuild some ground signal discs but for the mainline, I could really use a hand

My layout thread is here if anyone fancies having a crack at it for me?

https://www.newrailwaymodellers.co.uk/Forums/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=50467&start=30

I got the ratio signal pack as a starting point

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:05 pm

The main signalling you will need will be for starting the trains at the end of the platforms. Sighting looks good so no need for banner repeaters. There are basically two directions off your board through the tunnels, so if one wants correct signalling, every platform needs to have a junction signal at the exit. The higher of the two signals of the junction is placed on the side of the main route out.
Signalling is a subject in itself. For the platforms to depart to any siding or for shunting etc, you should have calling on signals. Ground shunting signals will be for the sidings that are off the main platform lines.
Take a look at signaling on the internet to see if a YouTube clip or similar can explain better in pictures where signals are used and where they are placed.
Some minor branch lines will use a token system. Yours looks too busy so is more of an absolute block type line.
One of the issues in signalling, is we love to complicate the trackwork and then we don't have the space for our signals! Yours looks ok for space. A layout I once made would have been almost impossible to signal without enormous gantries stretching right across the board!

rustysparks
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:36 pm

So in my head both lines are of equal priority and will see equal traffic. Could I have a secondary signal before the points that choose the tunnel to define direction?

Also what about incoming signals or would we assume that if the train is coming through the tunnels they were cleared on that section and will be routed correctly by the signalman on arrival?

My thinking for the ground signals would be on the 2 top sidings adjacent to the station and on the shunting loop alongside the station throat.

Also what level of signaling would be on the parcels bay on the nearest side of the station as it is quite small?

Or would the platforms use destination boards rather than a second signal?

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:56 pm

Due to the layout being in a short space, you will only have signals for outgoing train movements from the platforms, so don't worry about signalling trains coming from the back scenes to the platforms.
Junction signals where both routes have equal priority....The signals will be at equal height.
If you have signals near the tunnels as well, your platform signals will also need distant signals as well as starting signals.
You can get away with just starter signals on the platforms as you can assume the next signals off scene will be distant signals after a few miles of travel. (If you can simplify your signalling as much as possible I would do so as its so much easier!)
Basically, signals were provided where you need to stop trains conflicting on other lines, or where you need to hold trains, or where one needs to run more then one train in sections along a long length of line..
A mistake beginners can make regarding junction signals is to position the signal on the wrong side of the junction. The junction signal with the two signals should be positioned a good distance before the junction as it tells the driver the route that has been set for him to take (Hence the two signals). You do not normally find a single signal prior to a junction as the drivers wont know what route they will be taken on!
Modern multiaspect signals (Colour light signals) may seem a single signal but it will have "Feathers" instead(Five white lights at an angle above he signal to show the diverging route.. After around 2005 white lights were very bright. Prior to this date they were dimmer due to using older bulbs and not LED's so any modeller modelling junction signals take note as the newer Eckon/Berio signals have the modern bright lights, so they need to look for the older signals from the same range).
The Great Western Railway did use colour light type signals in certain places from about the 1930's onwards, but they were slightly different to the multi aspect type we have today.

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:12 pm

Great Western Railway signals were positioned on the left of the running line, or overhead on gantries if a more complex track formation means more signals are needed.
Modern signals can have up to three sets of feathers on each side in theory, but to simplify things, they use route indicator boxes instead with letters denoting routes, e.g. DM (Down main), UM (Up main), or even a letter representing the name of the branch line route... Theoretical example being HB for Harbour Branch.
To signal the old way one would have had many signals to do what just a few do today. Hence why they changed the system as new signalling ideas were put into practice.
Even today there are still a great many semaphore signals around, for example, if one travels west from Llanelli, one reaches Pembrey signal box with semaphores (In Burry Port as Burry Port was once in the Pembrey Parish), then Kidwelly is multi aspect, then Ferry side is back to Semaphore, then Carmarthen is all multi aspect, and further west, Whitland is mostly semaphore again! After Whitland the semaphores all dissapear.
I add these examples and the modern signalling just for anyone reading this post who may need the info.
I only know a little myself from the short time I worked on the railways. Many know a lot more and can advise accordingly, especially signal men!

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:17 pm

To sum up, junction signals on the platforms. Ground signals near the sidings and maybe where you need shunting procedures to take place. Keep it simple. (You correctly said about ground signals on the exit to sidings).

rustysparks
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:32 pm

So dual starting signals or single with a directional signal at the junction after the signal box before the lines split on the way out?

All my stuff is GWR period so will need semaphore signaling

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Thu Dec 29, 2016 4:49 pm

If attain is sitting at a platform and there are two main routes out, every platform with access to the two routes will need its own junction signal. The signal post of each signal is on the left of the rail or on the platform if that is the left and there is no room at the end of the platform. Normally on the ground at the end of the platform ramps.
If it is difficult to do so, a gantry is needed to span over the tracks.
Hope this makes it easier to understand.
As guards and drivers need to see the signal along with station staff, platforms on a curve where sighting for the guard would be an issue would have a banner repeater positioned half way along the platform. I do not know how the older railways like the GWR did this in signal form, but when I worked the railway it was done via a visual box that was illuminated from inside it via a bulb, which would repeat the aspect the signal was showing at the end of the platform.
I've never seen such a signal modelled in model form, though they are relatively common in real life if the platform is on a curve and the curve obstructs the view of the signals.
Banner repeaters are not just used at platforms. Basically they are used anywhere where signal sighting of the signal being approached is obscured.
Another two things I've rarely seen in model form are limit clearance boards and limit of shunt boards..
What you may find useful is if you can get hold of a railway rules book. These are not for general publication, but do sometimes find their way into secondhand stores etc. They have lots of useful information on signalling.

rustysparks
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:21 pm

Ok so probably got just enough in that pack to signal my main passenger platforms

Here is a pic of my station - you can see the start of the two exit routes bottom of pic

Image

The platform use from right to left is as follows

Image

Parcel bay
Normal bay platform
Main platform 1
Main platform 2
Goods inbound line (possibly going to fence the left side of the platform off - or could it be an "overflow platform"???)

Last 2 sidings on the left are pure goods traffic/loco stabling

If someone can let me know where they would place the signals here that would be awesome :)

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:07 pm

Good news. (So much easier to see the track plan as I write! Thanks for adding the photo). Looking at the track layout, the first three platforms can only send trains in one direction so only need one signal, not a junction signal.
It is only the final two platforms that need the junction signals.
The two sidings which don't have platforms need ground shunting signals.
There is a point I would add a signal in the other direction. This is near the clear bottle for trains to be held prior to entering the platform or the loop (They can only go into the one platform from here).
Ideally a single signal with two ground signals next to it, the two ground signals sharing the same ground post. The ground signals to allow trains to enter the sidings. The line next to the holding line where the trains pass over the double slip is a through running line and the signal would likely be before the back scene.
It is hard to see from the pics... I would put signals near the coaling stage on the way in. Not so easy to signal this bit, so maybe an idea to assume signals are off stage.

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Mountain
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby Mountain » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:11 pm

The smallest bay platform may get away with a shunting type signal instead.

rustysparks
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:03 pm

My thinking was in right to left

Shunting signal (should this be a ground signal or post mounted semaphore with the "S" symbol?)
Start signal
Start signal
Start signal with siding signal lower (with an "O" on the semaphore)
Start signal with siding signal lower (with an "O" on the semaphore)
ground signal on remaining sidings

Then a junction signal at the point where it splits to go through the tunnels?

My thinking was to have the signal box at this location too? Seems to have a good view of everything and I may possibly put a level crossing on but not sure yet.

There are no through lines, this will be modeled as a terminus

senorsenales
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby senorsenales » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:02 pm

If your bay platform is intended for passenger use, or at least trains that do more than a shunt move then you will need a start signal.

Shunting moves are based on low speed, not to exceed 20 mph, Drivers to proceed as far as the next signal or as far as he can see to be clear, so anything going on towards your junction requires something more than a shunt signal.

If you want to do a shunt move then you will want a shunting signal, as you describe or a small signal which denotes it is a subsidiary signal, rather than a running one.

rustysparks
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby rustysparks » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:41 pm

senorsenales wrote:If your bay platform is intended for passenger use, or at least trains that do more than a shunt move then you will need a start signal.

Shunting moves are based on low speed, not to exceed 20 mph, Drivers to proceed as far as the next signal or as far as he can see to be clear, so anything going on towards your junction requires something more than a shunt signal.

If you want to do a shunt move then you will want a shunting signal, as you describe or a small signal which denotes it is a subsidiary signal, rather than a running one.


Bay would be just a dump of a siphon or fruit vans as a shunt, no mainline inbound trains. Possibly used for loco stabling for a shunter on occaision.

Big question is should I have a junction signal before the split lines on the way out of the station?

senorsenales
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Re: Signaling on my layout - need a starting point

Postby senorsenales » Thu Dec 29, 2016 9:11 pm

Think about it like this. A signal is to let the Driver know that the line ahead is clear, at least as far as the next signal, and also lets him know where he is going.

If your junction is close to the starting point you could have a junction signal as the starting signal at the platform end, or, if it is going to be some distance away then have the junction signal near to the junction, it depends on your track layout between the platform end and the junction. In modelling form it is all a due to the space restrictions so there has to be a compromise in what you can have, it will never be 100% accurate.


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