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Woodland Scenics' Just Plug Lighting System

Read this review from Model Railroader magazine
Woodland Scenics’ Just Plug Lighting System
Woodland Scenics' Just Plug Lighting System
The Woodland Scenics Just Plug lighting system is truly plug and play. You can connect up to four LEDs into each Light Hub.

You want lights on your layout, but the thought of designing circuits, stripping wire, tedious soldering, and mounting lights just turns you off.

Well, you don’t have to go through all that anymore. Woodland Scenics has a solution, and all you have to do is plug components together to make a customized lighting system.

The basic piece of the Just Plug Lighting System is the Lights and Hub Set. It includes a pair of stick-on surface-mount light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and a Light Hub, which has controls to vary the brightness of the lights and sockets to plug everything in. Choose where you want your lights, peel off the backing, and stick them on. Then plug the wires into the Light Hub.

Each Light Hub can control up to four LEDs. Up to four Light Hubs can be connected together to control up to 16 LEDs using a separate Expansion Hub.

Woodland Scenics offers a power supply that plugs into the Light Hub or Expansion Hub, or you can use the auxiliary terminals on your direct-current power pack. To do that, you’ll need to purchase a connecting cable, cut off one of the plugs, strip the wire, and wrap it around the terminal posts. I know, now you’re back to stripping wires, but it’s just two.

I installed lights in a Woodland Scenics Built-&-Ready Harrison’s Hardware structure. I wanted to use the diffusing film and light block kits on the structure. The diffusing film instructions told me to finish what I needed to do with the light block kit first, so I set the film aside and opened the other box.

Inside the light block kit I found a plastic bottle of thick black paint, and two rolls of black putty. I used a brush to paint the black coating on the inside of the windows I didn’t want illuminated. The paint cleaned up with soap and water. I didn’t need to use the putty, which is designed to fill gaps where building surfaces join or seal a building to the layout surface.

Once the paint was dry, I installed the light-diffusing window film on the windows I wanted to illuminate. Woodland Scenics includes a sheet of adhesive dots it calls Micro Sticky Spots to attach the film to the building. Originally, I applied the dots to the building, but I learned it’s easier to apply them to the film first.

I also found I needed to use the window tint in the kit in addition to the diffusing film. The diffusing film is light gray, and shows through the windows with the lights off, contrasting with the blacked-out windows. When I used the window tint film, all the windows looked the same with the lights off.

Installing the lights was just a matter of sticking them where I wanted them. I plugged all of the lights, an auxiliary switch, and the power supply into the Light Hub and flipped the switch. Success!

The whole project, including going back to make adjustments, took only a couple hours. If the idea of lighted scenes on your layout seems desirable, yet daunting, the Just Plug system might be the solution to your dilemma.

Woodland Scenics
PO Box 98
Linn Creek, MO 65052

Prices: Lights & Hub Set (includes two warm white Stick-On LEDs), $19.99; LED Stick-On Light (2 lights with 24" cable/pkg., warm white, cool white, yellow, orange, green, blue, red), $9.99; LED Nano Lights, 2 lights with 24" cable/pkg., warm white, cool white, yellow, orange, green, blue, red, $9.99; red flashing, yellow flashing, $11.99; Light Hub, $16.99; Expansion Hub, $15.99; Auxiliary Switch, $9.99; Power Supply, $19.99; Connecting Cables (two), $5.99; Extension Cables (two), $5.99; Light Diffusing Window Film, $16.99; Light Block Kit, $16.99; Tidy Wire Kit, $6.99.

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