1st of a series of lights, for a layout in northern califonria


This light is the 1st in a series, for a customer, – The eventual goal, is that each signal light will have its logic controlled by an interaction of block detection and software on the computer.

The light is crafted by South Bend Signal Company and is primarily made using brass. I was basically handed the light from my customer and told to make it work, and figure out where to place it along with some others within his layout.

With the eventual goal in mind of controlling the lights throughout the layout via computer and block detection. I opted to use a micro-sized lighting decoder from NCE called a Light-It.  This allows each light to be addressed as either an Accessory or mobile decoder.  which can then be connected to the railbus for power and control.   for my test and development of small boxes to mount the light and hide the decoder in I’m simply using a block of wood, the decoder is attached to the back of the block. the lights themselves are individually controlled but are on a randomly timed on/off function.


The signals are wonderfully crafted, while the lighting decoders proved a lot of possibilities for lighting, for everything within buildings, passenger cars, cars in the on the road etc. they can also be set up as a stationary accessory decoder with a simple on/off or as a mobile decoder with the ability to control various lights.

here’s a brief video of the lights being randomly operated.

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