Everything on model trains, model railroads, model railways, locomotives, model train layouts, scenery, wiring, DCC and more. Enjoy the world's best hobby... model railroading!

9 Impressive Scale Model Houses To Download and Build

Above Bench Turnout Motors

Pete asks:

“I have a few turnouts that are over a ledge where there is no room for my preferred under bench Tortoise motors. Two turnouts in that location are hard to reach so I need to use a track-level turnout motor. I see there are several HO brands available such as Atlas, Peco, and Piko. Some reviews indicate they may be subject to burnout. Suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

7 Responses to Above Bench Turnout Motors

  • Dalesays:

    Have you considered the Circuitron Remote Mount? It uses a thin cable to connect the turnout from underneath to a switch machine mounted in a more convenient place. It does require about 1/2 inch of space under the turnout but the machine itself can be mounted up to about 18 inches away.

    • Petesays:

      Thanks, Dale. I will look into it.

  • Frank Bsays:

    If ordinary turnout motors are correctly wired to the right type of switch, it is virtually impossible to burn them out, because these motors are solenoids which only ever take current for a fraction of a second when operating.

    If they are wrongly wired to the wrong type of switch, so that a current is continually passing through them, they will certainly burn out.

    • Frank Bsays:

      Manufacturer’s websites usually have freely downloadable manuals for their products, which show the necessary wiring circuit.

  • David Stokessays:

    Frank is right, use spring loaded momentary switches on solenoid type machines (Peco etc.) Tortoise and other “motorised types have a double through/centre off switch to operate.

    There is no law that says points need electricity to change them – there are many manual systems available if they are conveniently located using wire in tube, lever and spring and hand of god arrangements.

  • David De Bondisays:

    Hi Pete,
    I have found the Peco surface mounted point motors fine where I couldn’t put my underneath Seep motors. Never had a solenoid motor burn out on me. I use a CDU ( Capacitor Discharge Unit ) for my solenoid motors with momentary on-off-on switches. All runs like a charm.
    David De

  • Peter Stoeblingsays:

    Thanks everyone. I’m going to try the Atlas motors first – easily available and inexpensive.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Add a photo or image related to your comment (JPEG only)

Use Tiny Railroad Micro Controllers

Download Your Free Catalog

N Scale Track Plans

Watch Video


Model Train Help Ebook

Model Train DCC HELP


FREE Tour Inside Club

Take a FREE tour inside the club.

Scenery Techniques Explained

Scenery & Layout Ideas

Model Railroading Blog Archive

Reader Poll

Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.