Re: Digest Number 4

Dale Gloer


as I said in my previous post, if your layout runs correctly on DC
then it will run correctly on DCC.

However, as Ulrich has pointed out, it is easy to ignore or not
notice little glitches that occur on DC that will cause DCC to shut
down. Those little hesitations in a switch with DC could be
temporary shorts that will cause the DCC system to shutdown and stop
all trains. So be critical when evaluating how your layout performs
on DC before you can say that it functions correctly. Go ahead and
just connect up your DCC system but don't be surprised if your
properly operating DC layout turns out to have some glitches that
will be exposed by DCC.

Regarding cutting up switches. This is heresey on Allan's forum -
BUT - you don't need to perform any of the modifications just
because you are switching to DCC. And all the modifications
actually apply to DC as well. The modifications describe how to
make switches trouble free forever. On my previous layout, I used
Peco Electrofrog swithces and did not do any of the mods. On both
DC and DCC I had the usual problems of poor contact, etc. when
depending on point rails to make contact with stock rails for power.
On my new layout I have made the mods on all switches as I installed

Regarding Ulrich's comments on wiring. Rewiring is a good idea
following the priciples that are also given by Allan and others.
however, to get started, you probably don't need to. Start running
DCC and if you find trouble spots, address those first and then
develop a plan to do the wiring conversion in stages so you can keep
your railroad running and upgrade it at the same time. It can be


--- In, Ulrich Albrecht <albreuf@m...>

One of the statements I often heard about conversion from DC to
DCC is
that if everything works under DC, just hook up a DCC booster, and
will work. In my opinion, this has to be taken with a grain of
salt, and
here are my reasons:

a) DC uses much lower current loads than DCC. I you use a booster
Digitrax DB150 or DCS100, the maximum output is 5A, while a good
pack in DC may deliver 2A. You may end up overloading your DC
wiring with
a DCC-booster. I rewired my lauout completely.

b) DC is much less sensitive to shorts than DCC. This applies
to turnouts. A metal whell that short circuits a turnout may not be
noticed by the DC powerpack due to the short duration of the
short, but it
will trigger the booster.

My sugestion, rewire the whole thing unless you have a AVG#18
power bus
(actually I would use AVG# 14 or lower when rewiring). The #18 is
unless your loads will exceed 3A, in this case it will cause a
drop. Also make sure that all your wheels are in gauge, so that
they do
not touch parts of switches which are connected to opposite
outputs of the
booster. As far as Peco turnouts are concerned, I have no
experience, but
if you do not have a short under DC, your set-up should work
except for


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