BLOCKsignalling manufactures low-cost control systems for model rail enthusiasts, which are designed to be highly flexible and sophisticated whilst being simple to install, configure and use.
New Semaphore Signal Controller
Our DAP1 semaphore signal controller is used by 100's of modellers to automatically operate their semaphore signals using the train approaching the signal to trigger the signal operation using an infra-red sensor mounted below the track. This works very well but requires connecting up and possibly some soldering as well.
We were keen to provide a solution that would simply work straight of of the packet, without the need for soldering, programming or making any additional connections. So here it is.
The four wires from the signal connect directly to the four terminals on the module, with the power feed doubling up on two of the terminals.
The sensor is then inserted into an 8mm hole drilled through under the track. With the power on, the approaching train will trigger the signal, and the signal will automatically revert to danger after the train has passed.
For more information on using this simple module, see our page dedicated to the DAP1-NS.
We are finalising our system of loco detection, based on transponders installed witin trains. When triggered by a magnet placed under the rails, these transmit an identifying serial number and other data to a detector located a short distance along the track.
Signal controllers and headcode displays will automatically operate signalling and update headcode displays and occupancy indications on control panels as trains more around the layout.
New Train Detector with 8 Channels DET8-BR
We already have an 8-channel train detector using photoelectric cells, and a cunning reference detector which changes the threshold according to the ambient light level of the room, the DET8. This detects trains passing over the sensor and then lights leds on a control panel or operates 2-aspect signals following bult-in programs which you can easily change to suit.
We also wanted to offer a detector which can track trains in blocks by monitoring their traction current. In fact carriage or loco lights will generally be sufficient to trigger the detection circuits.
With DC layouts, the detector can show the train direction. Plenty of simple-to-program options as usual.
Available: October 2014.
Station Stop Module SSM1
We have designed the Station Stop Module to operate a DC train around a loop, stopping automatically at the station platform. A pair of sensors ensure that the trains stop at the appropriate point at the platform, irrespective of the direction that the train arrives from.
The waiting time at the platform is adjustable, and can be set to random to provide a very realistic operation. There are plenty of options for adjusting the operation to suit, including connecting control panel leds or 2-aspect signals.
Shuttle for DCC Locos
BLOCKsignalling DCC Auto Shuttle Modules can operate a DCC locomotive backward and forward along a stretch of track, with realistic acceleration and deceleration at the ends of the line and automatic changes in the direction of travel.
A shuttle operating in the background adds interest to a layout, and ensures that there is always something going on. DCC equipped locos are ideal, providing a realistic show whether a slow shunter in a small yard or an express on a long run.
Our DCC shuttle operates from 12V to 16V DC (an old laptop power supply is ideal, and we have provided a socket on the board just for that purpose).
The loco changes direction when it enters a section of isolated track at the end of the line.
Operates with short addresses in the range 1 to 99.
Includes built-in programs for slow-speed shunting and high-speed lines, with variable and random waiting times at the end of the run.
Sneak Preview of our Section Controller for DCC
Many locomotive DCC controllers can be configured to brake automatically to a standstill when the track feed is switched from DCC to DC. They can also be set to accelerate automatically when DCC is re-applied.
The BLOCKsignalling DCC Section Controller monitors for trains entering a section using infra-red sensors located below the track, and switches the signal at the entrance to the section to red. At the same time, DC is switched to an isolated section in front of the signal, causing any following trains approaching the signal to decelerate to a standstill.
When the train fully exits the section (crossing over the exit infra-red sensor), the signal switches back to green.
If 3- or 4-aspect signals are used, the modules can be connected together to correctly operate the single yellow (and double yellow aspects, if appropriate) automatically.
Further details and wiring diagrams can be found here.
Fully Automatic Level Crossing Module LCS6
It's only a matter of days now, and our long awaited fully automatic level crossing module will be available.
We have been holding back until we are entirely happy with the servo operation, to lower the barriers or operate the gates with the most realistic movement possible. The simple programming allows sequential or overlapping operation of the gates or barriers to replicate the real article.
Also built-in are 18 of the most varied level crossing sounds, enabling you to model UK, continental, Asian and American crossings with the most realistic effects. There are bells, gongs, Yodalarm sounders, and others from all around the world, so there is certain to be one to suit.
Finally, warning led lights can be connected to show the yellow and flashing reds common in the UK, but can also be set to display various alternatives commonly found around the world.
There is a full page dedicated to the operation of the module, including the simple programming of the lights, barriers and sounds here.
We have placed an 1/8 page advert in Hornby Magazine's August Issue featuring some of our best sellers. Due in newsagents on 31st July.
Why not ask to see them in the flesh in your local model shop ? OnTracks is our trade distributor.
BLOCKsignalling Guest Appearance
BLOCKsignalling gets a mention in the June 2014 issue of Railway Modeller. Our Dapol signal controllers (DAP1) and light aspect controllers (ASP1 and ASP2) are grouped with new products from our trade distributor, OnTracks.
You can find further detail on this range at:
New Arrival: 8-Channel Train Detectors
Here is a sneak preview of our new 8-channel train detectors.
If you need detection in a number of locations, the cost can soon mount up. Our 8-channel detector is designed to provide sophisticated detection at low cost per monitoring point.
We are still deciding on the final features - but you can be sure that the module will be feature packed. Update: Now available.
Model Rail Shuttle Module with Infra-Red Detectors
We already have a couple of model rail shuttles in our range, but really wanted to add infra-red train detection. This allows any train to be detected without needing modification.
Infra-red detectors are located at both ends of a length of track, and automatically detect trains as they pass overhead.
Relays on the module stop the train, and after a period of time, reverse the track polarity to send the train back up the line.
We have added interest by allowing different delays at each end of the line (1 to 240 seconds), and that time can be either fixed or random.
There is also the option to connect leds to show the status of the module (these can be positioned on a control panel), or to connect simple 2-aspect light signals which change to allow the train to depart.
Lots of options for both DC locos and DCC locos set to run on DC.
See our page on the Infra-Red Shuttle SAS2-IR for information and ideas.
Infra-Red Triggered Points Controller
We love driving trains, but sometimes it is great to add a bit of extra interest by running other trains in the background or let them look after themselves while you are concentrating on some shunting.
A train running round and around the same track soon draws attention to itself, in all the wrong ways. When used with facing points, our points controller can reroute trains on to alternative tracks, either randomly, or just a proportion of trains. Perhaps set it up to send every fourth train on to a different line, or to randomly send trains to sidings (you can stop them with diodes or dead track).
Alternatively, use it with trailing points to automatically select the points to match approaching trains. If you have trains in sidings, as you run them towards the main line, the points will automatically route them.
Plenty of possibilities for both DC and DCC layouts.
Checkout our page on the Infra-Red Points Controller (IRP1) for more ideas and full details.
Introducing our Encapsulated Reed relays
We have introduced some miniature reed relays to our range. Designed to detect trains which have been fitted with magnets to their undersides, these are ideal for block occupancy detection and other triggering requirements.
These could easily be disguised as an AWS ramp or other track feature.
Each time a magnet passes over the sensor, the contacts inside close and a short output pulse is produced. Most of our modules can be programmed to accept these brief inputs as triggers.
Reed relays can be connected in parallel, giving the advantage that trains in several locations can detected and feed into a single module - for instance if you have a level crossing across a number of tracks, a train approaching on any track will trigger the module.
You can see from the picture below, these are really compact. The encapsulated section is just 15mm long (around 1/2").
BLOCKsignalling is owned & run by Steven Heaton address 12 Ennerdale Cl Leamington Spa.
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