Neil Young: Switch Accessible Train Set


What a fantastic thing, originating from around 1993. Singer-song writer Neil Young wanted to involve his two disabled sons into his passion of model railways. To do this he and the company he part owned at the time, Lionel and Able-Net created a switch accessible hand-set, the Lionel 6-12969 Trainmaster Cab-1 Command Base.


"The goal of the Lionel TrainMaster model railroad control system is simple: get everyone into the fun of operating Lionel trains. That means people who’ve been on the sidelines of model train operation, such as those for whom the physical challenge of using a traditional transformer is too great. The Lionel TrainMaster Big Red® switch lets you turn anyone into your “assistant engineer.” Simply connect the Big Red switch to CAB-1, press the pressure-sensitive switch, and the last command issued by your CAB-1 handheld controller is automatically duplicated. It’s great fun!"

Installing the Big Red switch is simple. Locate the small input jack on the top edge of CAB-1. It’s located near the telescoping antenna. Plug the wire leading from the Big Red switch into the jack. Next, enter a command on CAB-1- say, DIRECTION. Press the Big Red switch. The locomotive will sequence, duplicating the last command issued by CAB-1. As you become familiar with Train-Master, explore more operational possibilities with the Big Red switch. After all, you never know what you’ll learn from the newest members of the Lionel railroading hobby."

Many thanks to John Bannick of 7-128 software for the tip to this brilliant switch accessible train-set. I really wish more toy developers would follow suit for the price of a 40p component.


Lionel 6-12969 Trainmaster Cab-1 Command Base with Big Red accessibility switch.

Switch access to Lionel Train set

Switch access to Lionel Train set. Neil Young with his Son around 1994.

The CAB-1 Lionel Hand-set with attached Big Red accessibility switch.

Lionel steam train.

Neil Young smiling with his son.

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2 Responses to 'Neil Young: Switch Accessible Train Set'

  1. # Blogger moroQ

    thanks! great!  

  2. # Blogger OneSwitch.org.uk

    Agreed, and you're welcome!  

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