1. What is the TCL?
2. What needs to be done before you use the TCL?
It is assumed that you have done a Signal Layout
Design Plan of you train layout with the following:
a. Identified and numbered each signal block.
b. You know which signal model goes in each location.
c. Identified each target on each signal with
the number for the block it is protecting and the direction
of train travel it faces. For example, a target at the beginning
of block 3 for a westbound train would be numbered as 3W. Two
or more targets approaching the same signal block from the same
direction will be labeled as 3W, 3WD (diverging), 3WX (extra),
d. Identify each turnout (switch) with a capital letter.
(swA, swB, etc.)
If you are not sure of how to do all of this,
it may be helpful for you to look through the TCL to see examples. You may also check out PLANING in the Signal System section
for more information. You may also contact Custom Signals to have a Signal Plan done for you
at a small cost.
The TCL is made up of two schematics for each track configuration:
1. TRACK CONFIGURATION WITH SIGNAL PLAN.
2. CORRESPONDING circuit
board configuration FOR THAT PLAN .
To begin, start at the beginning
of a signal block. Then:
a. Search through the list of track configurations
until you find the one that is the same or similar to the part
of the layout you are trying to signal. You will find many different
track configurations used in prototypical and model railroading.
Print a copy of the track configuration that best resembles
that part of your layout. Please refer to the C1
as an example.
b. Each of these will have the sample signal track blocks
numbered. Write your TRACK BLOCK NUMBERS on the signal layout
plan next to the existing block numbers on the plan. You need to
keep both the original numbers and your own numbers so that you can reference your track blocks to the track
blocks on the TCL. You may want to use a different color pen to help distinguish your numbers.
Again, do not erase the existing numbers because you will need them
for further references.
c. Each signal target in the TCL protecting those blocks
will also be numbered for the block it is protecting and the
direction of train travel the signal faces. Write your SIGNAL TARGET HEAD NUMBERS from your signal layout plan next to the sample
signal target head numbers on the TCL so that they correspond to the signal blocks
on your layout. The only thing that will change is the number. Again, you may cross out the originals, but do not cover them up. You may also want to use your colored pen for this.
d. Write the TURNOUT LETTERS from your signal
layout plan next to the sample turnout letters on the TCL. If your turnouts are already numbered, you may use those numbers.
e. You should now have the track layout written
with your TRACK BLOCK NUMBERS, SIGNAL TARGET HEAD NUMBERS and TURNOUT LETTERS.
You will need this for the Circuit Board part and you should
keep this as a reference for future work.
f. Find and print out the circuit board configuration that corresponds
to the track configuration found in Part a above. Here is the
Circuit Board Configuration for the C1
Scissors Crossover as an example.
g. Find the sample signal head target numbers in the J3 boxes
for each circuit board. Each of these target numbers corresponds to one of the SIGNAL HEAD TARGET NUMBERS on the sample signal plan. Write your signal target numbers next
to the corresponding numbers on the circuit board configuration.
You can match them up using the original numbers. Again, you may want to use your different color pen.
h. The TRACK BLOCK NUMBERS indicate which block will be used for detection for each SCB. The detection number goes next to the Din on each PCB. Next, write the new detection numbers (Din)
next to the existing detection numbers for each printed circuit board.
The new detection number will be the same as the new signal block number
in the J3 box from Part g.
i. Next, write your SW TURNOUT LETTER from your
plan on the corresponding TSC board on the Circuit Board
j. Finally, change the TRACK BLOCK NUMBERS to the corresponding block
numbers from your signal plan.
This completes the modification for
this track configuration. You now have the correct Circuit Board Configuration
with your TRACK BLOCK NUMBERS, SIGNAL TARGET NUMBERS and TURNOUT LETTERS for this part of the layout.
k. Move down the layout to the end of the next
signal block. Repeat steps a-j for the next track configuration. Again,
you are simply replacing the numbers and letters in the TCL
with the numbers and letters from your layout plan.
Place the new pages next to the first set of
pages in the same order as your track layout.
Repeat this process for each part of your layout
moving down the tracks. Arrange and tape together the track configurations
as you print them out to form a diagram of your layout. Also
layout the corresponding circuit board configurations side by
side and tape them together to form a circuit board layout.
You now have the correct circuit board layout with your signal
numbers ready for mounting the circuit boards and making the
connections. If you can't find the track configuration you are
looking for, call Custom Signal for assistance.
Below is a finished plan.