Layout Lighting (Don’t have a catchy title for this one)

Layout lighting is another area where there are many trains of thought (that was pretty catchy-though). Florescent tubes are one option… with this method there are choices for tube color, number of tubes, fixture spacing and a concern of UV rays fading your scenery. I tried this option… the fixtures were expensive, cumbersome to install, hard to fit in space allowed, did not flow around corners, hard to obtain the color I wanted and did not give off enough light (sort of explains why I’m against them).

Another option is incandescent lighting. Generally speaking this method generates to much heat.

Best Railroad Lighting Fixture

 I opted for a highbred combination that includes all of the best features and none of the drawbacks….My lighting uses low cost Medium Base incandescent fixtures to hold Compact Fluorescent bulbs. The bulbs run cool, they are cheap (now anyways), they come in all the colors and I can pick the wattage to achieve the level of brightness I desire.  The wiring is a simple bus type arraignment, just Tee in as many lamps as you need. I am using 60w bulbs spaced at 1 foot intervals. For the color I alternate between Bright White (3500k) and Daylight (5000K). This gives me a natural color I feel is right.

Lighting Valence

 All this is covered with valence made with dropped ceiling components and a cracked ice panel. This gives the ceiling a finished off look. All this came from Home Depot. Lighting is complicated to get right, I hope with some of these suggestions you can avoid all the trials I have been through.

Model Railroad Light FixtureModel Railroad Light Bulbs

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