Model train lights

Rob’s been in touch – this time he shows us how he adds his model train lights:

“Hi Al,

I have been looking for ways to put flashing for modern stock or flickering oil light lantern simulators in older pre-electronics stock.

I have discovered battery operated movement switched devices and small circuit boards for DCC track powered flashers.

The video I’m sending over shows how I installed a battery operated flickering oil lamp simulation in a brake van.

These are similar in many way to the caboose or way car in North America. The video was made in response to a viewers request. Perhaps some of your readers will enjoy it.


model train lights

model train lights

model train lights

If you’re after adding lights to your buildings, Bob’s post is very good too: Model train LED lights.

Now on to Tony:

“Hi Al,

Finally it’s off a graph paper pad! We’re making a nice trolley barn for 4-tracks with your modified ‘Engine Shed 3′ kits.

My son is doing a really great job doing the reliefs and making the modifications as per your very talented friend teaches in the videos.

I’ll have a reasonable car house and yard complex in a 4’x 3.5’ module after much redesign to optimize the available space.

The initial track is laid out in ETS tram track from the Czech Republic as I have powered all my trolleys (trams) to negotiate the sharpest radius curves they sell.

The four shortest stub ended tracks will be under the modified Engine Shed 3 building:

You can see from the existing wooden ties that I was once into HO. There is a small corner of the module at the right side of the bottom photo with wood HO ties. It’s there I’d like to put a small operator’s office/lounge building similar to the photo below only MUCH smaller.

Above the centermost windows is “PITTSBURGH RAILWAYS COMPANY” in the masonry. This was the company’s standard design with building sizing modifications to fit the available property at the trolley barns.

Do you have any suggestions from the buildings available – – – Or on your drawing board? My model is a reflection of the Plummer Street Car House in Pittsburgh below. Note the abbreviated office/lobby size in the drawing in the lower left of the drawing:



I do love what Tony is doing, over the years I have noticed the layouts based on a theme always turn out the best.

And it reminded me of Joe’s 1930s HO layout post from a few days ago too.

With regards to Tony’s question on the printable buildings, I think to build the operation office, I’d go with the first scratch build kit:

It would be simple enough to recreate – most buildings are just squares and rectangles in various disguises.

A big thanks to Rob for sharing his model train lights, and to Tony too.

Please do leave a comment below if Rob or Tony has got you thinking.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you get started on your layout, the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

7 Responses to Model train lights

  1. Fred says:

    Lights at 16 pounds for 2 make it a bit expensive, especially when postage to Australia is added

  2. david howarth says:

    Good idea Rob to save having to open up the truck to change the battery ….Dangerous Dave

  3. Stephen Hill Woodstock GA says:

    Joe I really like your replica , very detailed and intricate work you’ve accomplished.

  4. Robert Sylves says:

    Great thinking will have to try. Thanks Bob

  5. Erick says:

    Looks pretty kool?

  6. Mike Balog says:

    Good Idea Rob,,, showing how to mount the LED and Battery Holder under the car instead of inside it. Have an idea, to place the LED Flashing Lantern or Box on the Inside Wall of the Caboose… the way the old time Caboose Lanterns used to be mounted. Instead of on the outside wall facing the knuckle coupler. That would be more realistic as it would be to the side of the caboose door. Then, the wires under the car would be further away from the trucks… Just an Idea. Liked the cooper pick up strips for the pick up power from the rails. Perhaps you can show us how to install those too. ,,~ Mike, N.H. – U.S.A.. Friday Oct. 28, 2022.

  7. roland allard says:

    I like these flashing lights behind the last car by Train-tech, I am in Waterloo Ontario Canada where can I buy those, are they selling in Canada or USA
    Roland Allard

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