LOUD diesel horns?

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wa6mdi
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LOUD diesel horns?

Post by wa6mdi » Thu Aug 03, 2017 5:07 pm

Hi,

I just acquired a 2.5 inch switcher loosely modeled after the D&RGW # 50. Currently it has what I would call a generic Wal Mart horn. Medium loud and kind of flat. Looking to replace it with something that is a little louder and attention getting. Room is not a problem and there is a 12 volt system with an automotive battery, so current is not the problem either.

Just wonder what other operators have come up with?

Thanks

Dick

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Atkinson_Railroad
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by Atkinson_Railroad » Thu Aug 03, 2017 6:33 pm

The Italian made Stebel is a very good horn.

You can hear what various models sound like here:

http://www.stebel.it/stebel/products.as ... PNEUMATICS

Pricing info can be found at their USA website:

http://www.stebel-usa.com/product/38/mo ... ompressor/

If you go the economy route choosing something from an auto parts store, there’s a good chance you’ll be disappointed.

John

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makinsmoke
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by makinsmoke » Thu Aug 03, 2017 6:46 pm

Hi Dick,
Unless you have air on your loco you are stuck with electric. With 12 volts auto or truck horns
are easy to find.

Do a little research and find out what the 50
had on it in the way of an air horn. Once you have that you can find out the frequency of the air horn and buy a 12 volt horn of the same frequency.

You can find little 12 volt compressors but the trouble is finding a decent air horn. Either they are European type high pitched jobs or regular diesel or locomotive horns. In either case no one will want to spend the day around you yanking
on it. And you'll be deaf as well!

Take care,
Brian

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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by Glenn Brooks » Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:45 am

+1 for adding a small air pump and maybe a holding tank. Also, I read somewhere that diesel RR horns were multi chime. Meaning the RR's mounted three to five horns, each with a different pitch, in a bundle on the cab. So you get a sweet, distinctive, multi chime sound. You might consider finding two or more horns and combining with your existing flat base horn to produce exactly the right sound you are looking for.

Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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Karl_Losely
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by Karl_Losely » Fri Aug 04, 2017 8:58 am

Two suggestions.
First suggestion.
Go to a automotive recycling yard and hunt for the horns off of something like a Regal or other luxury car. They sound rather nice, although a bit more like a boat horn than locomotive in my opinion. You need to get all 3 or 4 horns though for the nice sound, and they are well hidden.
Second suggestion.
Harbor Freight has a 3 chime air horn set with compressor that doesn't sound too bad, especially if you have your own compressor to supply the air.

Karl

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slsf1060
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by slsf1060 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 11:04 am

I'll second the Stebel horns. I have a "nautilus truck horn" that is a single note at 300hz. It's real close to one of the WABCO single note hooters that Baldwin used on their early switchers. It's loud enough but not "kills your ears" loud.

Check the frequencies and you could mix or match two different 2-note horns and come up with a good sounding horn.
Darren McNeely

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BigDumbDinosaur
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by BigDumbDinosaur » Mon Aug 07, 2017 8:51 pm

slsf1060 wrote:I'll second the Stebel horns. I have a "nautilus truck horn" that is a single note at 300hz. It's real close to one of the WABCO single note hooters that Baldwin used on their early switchers. It's loud enough but not "kills your ears" loud.

Check the frequencies and you could mix or match two different 2-note horns and come up with a good sounding horn.
300 Hz is too high, approximately E♭ above middle C. The WABCO horns used by Baldwin were about a major sixth lower in pitch, which would put the frequency around 195 Hz. The honkers used on E- and F-units, as well as the GG1, are even lower pitched, around a D below middle C and thus around 140 Hz.

Really a shame acoustics don't scale... :cry:
——————————
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slsf1060
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by slsf1060 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:44 am

BigDumbDinosaur wrote:
slsf1060 wrote:I'll second the Stebel horns. I have a "nautilus truck horn" that is a single note at 300hz. It's real close to one of the WABCO single note hooters that Baldwin used on their early switchers. It's loud enough but not "kills your ears" loud.

Check the frequencies and you could mix or match two different 2-note horns and come up with a good sounding horn.
300 Hz is too high, approximately E♭ above middle C. The WABCO horns used by Baldwin were about a major sixth lower in pitch, which would put the frequency around 195 Hz. The honkers used on E- and F-units, as well as the GG1, are even lower pitched, around a D below middle C and thus around 140 Hz.

Really a shame acoustics don't scale... :cry:
300hz works for me. Like I stated, it's close. And I'm not going to have a 2 plus whatever foot horn bolted to the top of my diesel...
Darren McNeely

and the sons of Pullman Porters, and the sons of engineers,
ride their father's magic carpets made of steel.

www.swlsonline.org

rkcarguy
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by rkcarguy » Wed Nov 01, 2017 12:35 pm

Hella makes a set of electrics that pair a 420hz with a 300hz, has anyone tried the 300hz by itself? Could mounting it within a chunk of ABS pipe deepen the tone? I was thinking of trying that and pointing it at the ground. Maybe only one way to find out...
I'm trying to shop for a horn for my Baldwin S-12, and because I don't want to tick off the neighbors I'm looking for something not all that loud...just enough that if I'm crossing my driveway and someone is there I can wake them up a little:)
I'm trying to gather everything that will mount within the body, as I'm going to start sizing the fuel and hydraulic tanks soon and they are going to take up most of the remaining space.

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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by Kimball McGinley » Wed Nov 01, 2017 2:53 pm

Aren't there also all-electric sound systems made? I mean, something that has a digital recording of a real loco horn. All you need then is an appropriate speaker.

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DianneB
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by DianneB » Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:54 pm

Kimball McGinley wrote:Aren't there also all-electric sound systems made? I mean, something that has a digital recording of a real loco horn. All you need then is an appropriate speaker.
I made an ------ loop player for my 24 foot boat. It has a clip of a BIG ferry horn and when I blow the horn, everybody is looking around for a monstrous BIG ship! :mrgreen: They work GOOD!

cp4449
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Re: LOUD diesel horns?

Post by cp4449 » Sat Nov 11, 2017 11:07 am

Go to junk yard. Find a 1970-80’s Cadillac. Caddie have two horns, one high, one low. You will find them on each side of the engine compartment. Guaranteed to scare someone when you hit the button....
C.P. Mahony
Former 1" Foreman
Los Angeles Live Steamers

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