New Aristo "slow motion" Switch Motor

 ***need*** updated pictures and bohler info

Summary

An inexpensive slow motion switch motor, clone of another product. Not waterproof, has to have extensive sealing for outdoor use, weak spring causes incomplete throw of switch in all but pristine turnouts. Terminals labeled improperly on the PCB, power consumption almost double specification (but 180 ma is not much).

I would not purchase this except for indoor use, or you have turnouts that never get dirt or grit in them and you are prepared to goop silicon over the entire connector.

History

The motor was announced around 2004. The pictures here are from a prototype I saw in 2007. The product was supposed to be available in 2008. In February 2009, the production started.

It was originally announced that it would be water proof, but unfortunately, the promised waterproofing has not occurred:

"We failed making it waterproof, so we are re-designing it to make it water resistant. I'll know soon.

Yours truly,
Lewis Polk"

(from the Aristo forum  6/10/2004)

I was skeptical at the time on how the exposed circuit board could be made to be waterproof.

Description

It now seems that you will have to enclose the entire end in silicon or something. This is a poor design, but it is clear that this is an almost exact copy of the Bohler switch motor:

Part number ART-11298, about $25 street price.

I will post pictures of the new motor, but only one thing changed: the "throw rod" is now round, and there are indeed O rings on it.

The other major design flaw is that the spring that protects the mechanism when the throwbar reaches a "hard stop" is too weak, and there have been many reports of switches not throwing all the way. Outdoors, dirt and grit can increase the friction. This was clearly just a clone of the Bohler, no additional thought to it's suitability outdoors, etc. 

The battery box will also be available. The motor works with a small electric motor, and the motion is slow and prototypical. The throwbar attaches to the turnout, and the other side of the motor has an arm that likewise moves, maybe for a moving switch target, or what have you. There is a switch inside with (I believe) SPDT contacts (you can see the white silkscreening just up from where the wires are connected to control the motor. The motor has a limit switch, so the application of voltage will cause it to move and then stop at the limit. You then apply power to the other contact to reverse the motion. 

I

The underside shows an interesting feature, 3 sets of holes to allow variation in placement. I don't know why, I thought all Aristo switches were the same "distance". Notice that the connection to the throwbar is with 2 small pins, instead of a single one. This will make it more reliable and last longer. Lewis said something about the underside of the circuit board being insulated or coated. This is not a production model, so maybe this will be protected in production. 

 In addition, there will be a jumper cable available to"daisy chain" power to multiple switches.

 

Wiring:

http://www.aristocraft.com/techinfo/pdf/11298wire.pdf

 

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