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Model Railroading > Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into position?


Date: 02/18/21 09:03
Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into position?
Author: wabash2800

I've been using a Radio Shack slide switch for a unique application that is stiff and snaps into position at the end of the throw.  I know that this is good to make sure that the contacts are in position. However, I need a slide switch that slides smoothly back and forth and does not snap into position.


Which is the norm with slide switches--slide and snap into position or just slide? It is also stiff. As for the stiffness, I tried a special lubricant for these kinds of items, and it did not help. It is how the switch is made. From what I can tell, there is no practical way to modify this Radio Shack switch without destroying it. I am also worried that based on how they are built, that this stiffness will cause them to wear out prematurly.

The electronic catalogues, product descriptions and drawings don't really make this distinction on slide mechanisms other than length of throw, size of button, electrical properties, etc.

Barring purchasing samples and trying them out, I thought I'd ask our folks on Trainorders, based on their experience. Also, perhaps we have some folks here with electrical supply experience. If I find what I want, I will need them in quantities and not limited overseas runs dumped on the market with a particular model eventually no longer available. (Yes, I can buy spares.)

Victor A. Baird
http://www.erstwhilepublications.com



Edited 8 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/21 09:54 by wabash2800.



Date: 02/18/21 13:30
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: ChrisCampi

There are many soft throw wall mount style light switches. Cheap at your local hardware store.



Date: 02/18/21 14:13
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: wabash2800

Thanks Chris, but the slide function is basically a dimmer, yes? I need to reverse polarity.

Victor A. Baird
http://www.erstwhilepublications.com



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/21 16:04 by wabash2800.



Date: 02/18/21 17:59
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: DTrainshooter

Having been in the business way back when I'd recommend finding a surplus electronic parts store near you. Many still exist and the nice part is that they will
have numerous different styles of switches usually stored in open bins where you can take them out and "play" with them to find the feel you're looking for.
The prices will be a fraction of what you'd normally pay too. When you find the right switch buy plenty of spares because usually what the store has is a one time
supply for that particular one. Here in Orlando, FL where I live currently we have Skycraft Surplus...most good sized cities always have a surplus electronics store.
Did a little poking around online...ever been to DIYit in Fort Wayne ? Or, there is a Fair Radio Sales in Lima, OH that sounds like the type of store I'm talking about.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/21 18:30 by DTrainshooter.



Date: 02/18/21 18:32
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: wabash2800

Yes, at one time we had such a place like that in a warehouse with tables and tables of electrical items that had been salvaged. I saw contractors in there too. It was a lot of fun to walk through the rows of tables and check everything out and pick up a few items.

Victor A. Baird
http://www.erstwhilepublications.com



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/21 21:24 by wabash2800.



Date: 02/19/21 01:17
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: Notch7

This may sound odd, but I immediately thought of it when I read your post.  I use a slide switch all the time with very little snap or resistance to it.  It is fairly small, works better when it wears, and lubes well with WD-40.  It is the EMD style generator field switch off a throttlestand.  I have no idea who makes them, maybe someone else does.  Ones off scrapped engines might be smoother.  Just a sincere thought.



Date: 02/19/21 08:11
Re: Slide Switches that slide smoothly and do not snap into posit
Author: wabash2800

Thanks Notch. Since I will need at least 40, that might not be practical. <G> I am going to try something else.

Victor A. Baird
http://www.erswhilepublications.com



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