Re: Is this question allowed?

David J. Starr <dstarrboston@...>

Jim Betz wrote:
Are how to modelling questions about cabooses allowed on this
list? Specifically I have a question about lighting techniques
(not prototype specific but a "how would you do this?" question).
- Jim in San Jose
Ah yes, the lowly crummy ... not a revenue car and not a passenger car ...
I lit a caboose once upon a time. I got a 0.47 FARAD capacitor from All Electronics and did a home brew circuit to charge it and run a 1.5 volt lamp. All that worked, the cap held enough juice to keep the lamp lit for some 20 seconds after track power was removed.
I made wheel wipers from phosphor bronze weather strip and that works kinda. After a lot of tinkering and bending I got the tension right to keep the lights lighting. But the friction drag from the wipers was really bad. I coupled the caboose onto one of Andy Miller's coal trains and the wiper drag was so bad the train could not make the grade. And that was with one of Andy's solid lead PRR steamers on the point.
My advice is to go with axle wipers. The diameter of the wheel gives leverage to turn the axle reducing the overall friction drag.

David Starr

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