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"How to" Series

Tools and Materials


  1. RIX PRODUCTS HO-scale Railroad Telephone Pole kit (Stock #628-0032): (1) pole & (4) cross braces

  2. (2) ATLAS N-scale (plastic) truck wheel sets (for making pulleys)

  3. (1) 5/16" OD wood dowel or styrene rod: 1-2" long

  4. A-LINE #29220 chain: 12" long, 27 Link per inch (black)

  5. Adhesive: Styrene (thin) & Cyanoacrylate (thick)\

  6. Flat file: medium

  7. X-ACTO knife: Broad tip blade

  8. Flat-nose pliers

  9. Flush-cutting nippers

  10. Tweezers: Flat-nose & needle-nose

  11. Razor saw/miter box

  12. (4) TICHY #3015 18" HO-scale Drop Style grab irons (or 0.015 OD brass rod)

  13. 0.02" OD brass rod: 1-2" long

  14. Drill bit: #76 & #79

  15. Primer (for wood)

  16. Paint: Reefer White, Grimy Black & Engine Black












  1. If you don’t want to use the RIX PRODUCTS telephone poles, you could use 1/8” OD styrene rod or tubing for the pole and dimensional 1 x 2 for the supports.  Again, I just used what I had on hand.

  2. Also, if using 1/8” OD styrene: You can roughen the exterior of the pole by scraping it horizontally with the teeth of a razor saw.  Rotate the pole so that the grooves are evenly distributed but still somewhat random.  I do this also for my exterior light poles.  When painted with Floquil Roof or Rail Brown, it looks very much like a wood pole.  For metal poles, don’t scrape exterior.

  3. Lanterns would have been added for viewing/seeing ball signal at night.

Simple Ball signal: Step-by-step instructions (***Under construction***)


Step 1 - See "Diagram" for details


Step 2 -


Step 3 -


Step 4 - 

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