US&S Type N-2 Dwarf Signal – $9.95
This HO Scale kit builds 1 US&S N-2 dwarf signal. The resin kit includes concrete signal base, signal housing, signal housing door and clear rod for signal lenses. Note that the signal kit does not include LED’s. You will have to supply the LED’s for this kit. They are available pre-wired which is what we use. Generally they can be sourced inexpensively (25 for $10). We suggest using 0402 or 0603 LED’s. Voltage and resistors will depend upon what signal circuitry you are using. The concrete signal base can be either attached to the signal with CA or left off depending on how and where your signal is mounted. Some signals were mounted on station platforms or in locations where the concrete base will not be necessary.
The kit consists of (from left to right) the concrete signal base, signal housing, signal housing door and on the clear rod for signal lenses. As the pieces are cast resin, they will have an amount of flash that has to be cleaned off with a sharp hobby knife and fine sanding sticks.
Once the flash is cleaned off the pieces are ready to be painted. In the signal base there is a small hole that should be drilled completely through the base to route the signal wiring. If you plan on just using these as dummy signals then this hole does not have to be drilled.
When the flash is cleaned off the signal housing can be attached to the concrete signal base. The hole in the base should be oriented at the rear of the signal just below the signal. CA is recommended to attach the signal housing to the base. DO NOT attach the signal housing door to the signal at this time. It has been attached to the model to test for fitment in this photo. The fit should be where it holds itself in place.
The signals were painted in different ways. The Erie Lackawanna had the housings painted silver and the front of the signal with hoods painted black. The base would be painted to represent concrete. Paint the inside of the signal housing as well to help keep the light from the LED’s from bleeding through the housing. Same goes for the signal housing door, paint the inside. I painted the entire signal black and then went back and painted the silver parts of the signal over the black paint. The clear rods should be cut to a length of 1/8″. That will bring them to the front of the signal housing under the hood and leave enough room in the back for LED’s.
The clear rods fit is pretty snug. You may have to ream out the hole slightly with a round file if there is some resin flash inside the hole. Once the hole is the proper size, the clear rod should slide into place from the back side. It is recommended to use some acrylic clear gloss paint to hold the rod in place. It is painted around the rod on the back side.
As mentioned in the previous step, the clear rod should be even with the front of the signal housing opening. Paint the end of the clear rod with some more of the acrylic clear gloss paint. This will hold the rod in place and give a nice glossy finish to the end of the rod which was cut.
If you are installing LED lighting in the signals the LED’s are attached to the end of the clear rod in the back of the signal housing. The top LED is an 0603 LED while the bottom LED is an 0402 LED. This was done to demonstrate the size of the LED’s and how much room is available. Install the lower LED first. Canopy glue is used to hold the LED in place. Install the upper LED after the lower LED has set up. Run the wires down through the bottom of the upper housing and across the back of the lower led, then down through the concrete signal base. The signal housing door has a channel cast into it to accommodate the wiring being run in this manner. It will not interfere with the wiring when pressed into place. Use more of the Canopy glue to hold the upper LED in place. Once the upper LED is tacked into place attach the signal housing door. It should hold its place firmly. The last step is to add a little paint around the joint of the signal housing and the signal housing door. This will bond the housing door in place, seal any light leaks that may occur and make the signal look more finished. If the door needs to be opened at some point for LED maintenance it can be pried open with a hobby knife easily enough.
The upper LED on my signals was always red on the Erie Lackawanna.
In this instance I had installed a green LED that was improperly placed in my amber LED bag. The Erie Lackawanna dwarf signals were always red over amber. As you can see, the green LED is blindingly bright and will be toned down with the proper resistor.