Servo Installation

Here is one method for installing servo motors below points on a baseboard. It's ideal for using with our DCC/DC servo module, but can be used with any similar servo decoder. This is by no means the only method for installing servo motors; many retailers offer purpose-built servo brackets. Some even include a mechanism for converting the servo arc into a perfect linear motion, but this isn't required as the servo has plenty of torque on its own. If you have some woodworking skills (in particular, can cut a mortise), this offers a quick, cheap and robust method for installing servo motors.

Tools and Materials

You will need a few basic woodworking tools: a saw, chisels, mallet, pencil and small screwdriver. Only a 12mm chisel is required, though the 6mm and 24mm come in helpful.

Tools

'Doorstep' sized timber, with a profile of 32x12mm, is ideal for making the bracket and is commonly available. Piano wire is required for moving the point; size 7 (equivalent to 0.46mm, 0.018" or standard wire gauge 27) is perfect for this.

Method

Cut a 90mm length of timber. Mark out the centre of the largest face, then mark lines 5mm and 19mm either side. This way, the centre of the servo spindle will fit through the centre of the block. Cut a through mortise 12mm by 24mm (the 24mm chisel is useful for marking out). Cut a notch on the reverse side for the servo cable to fit through.

Sawing timber

Marking out

Start cutting a mortise

Through mortise

Cable entry

Installation

Now the bracket is mostly complete. Move to the top face and drill holes 30mm to each side of the centre; these will be useful later on for lining up the bracket with the point. Finally, bend the piano wire through the servo horn, use a servo controller (our DCC/DC servo module is ideal) to centre the servo before putting the horn onto the spindle.

Completed servo bracket