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  1. #1

    To string utility wire or not?

    Has anyone else struggled with whether or not to string the power and telephone wires on your utility poles? I've seen some photos that look great, but I'm concerned about things getting tangled, the wire getting in the way and other things I haven't even thought of. What's been the experience around here? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Union City, California, United States
    Put a small fly on each post, and see if the spiders will string between them :tb-biggrin:

    Nope, not gonna happen on my layout (I also have a dearth of utility poles, so folks won't ask)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Connelly Springs, NC
    Berkshire Junction has a product called EZ-line that is proving to be a very valuable way of stringing wire, especially so in that it remains flexible so that there is no damage in case the wires are accidentally touched.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Falls Church,Va
    How modern is your era being modeled? A lot of utilities get buried today, and instead of poles you have those gray or green transformers on pads, and smaller versions here and there. If you have to use poles along the track mount them to the side of the track opposite the edge of the layout. That way you can reach a derailed car without having to reach over the wires or poles.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    San Antonio, Texas
    Don't do it! IMHO, of course. It is just something in the way to be broken off the first time you clean track or re-rail a car.

    But...I would pick a good place to take pictures and string some only in that location. It does look nice. I do recommend EZ Line for that and a lot of other things like guy-wire.

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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Mississippi Gulf Coast, USA
    I use Berkshire EZ-Line, Fine for in town, and Heavy for transmission from the power plant to the substation. The photos are indistinct, but show the lines if you look closely.

    BTW, EZ-Line stretches over 100% without breaking, then returns quickly to its original shape. The Heavy line in the photo crosses in front of the house interior power panel, but isn't harmed when the panel door is opened to access the circuit breakers because of stretching.

    Hank....I may have to Grow Old, but I Never have to Grow UP!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Southampton, UK
    I've seen EZ Line in use. It does make quite a difference to how the layout looks but it isn't going to happen on mine.


    Pete Davies

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Blog Entries
    Unless you can get the natural droop, I wouldn't bother.

  9. #9
    How modern is your era being modeled?

    The very late 50's, on one half, and the early 80's on the other. I'm doing sort of a split scene. However, the rolling stock and lines will always be B&O and friends up to the late 50's.

    Thanks for the input all! Both sides made sense! I'll have to see how things go as I move along. I like the idea of having one little area for photos that have lines.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    In the mitten
    Besides being able to reach the track easily, its a corss that line (no pun intended) thing. "I did it here, but those poles look funny without wires over there..."

    Also struggled with the natural droop thing too. Great point mcJaco. "How do I capture that look", I have wondered.

    Its kinda like the "do I put in the fence wires?" dilemma. For now, I am happy to "see them in my mind". Maybe someday...

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