Date   
Re: A question on DCC track wiring using yard point triple turnouts

George Galyon
 

F YI..our club uses a Shinohara C100 (old version with double crossbars on the point rails) three-way in our passenger yard..unmodified for DCC.  It works just fine with all of our rolling stock.  We feed power at the point end using just point-stock rail contacts (a real no-no..but it works).  And, so far, nothing shorts out at that "trouble spot" adjacent to the point-closure rail connection.  I did jumper wire the point-closure rails because the rail joiner connection that came with the Shinohara 3-way was useless as an electrical connection.  Depending on what vintage you have, there may be another little short prone spot adjacent to one of the frog wing rails.  Just trim back the wing rail and/or put a little dab of JB weld on the tip of the wing rail and you'll be good to go.

I know that many will advocate converting the Shinoharas to be DCC friendly by removing the crossbars on the point rails.  Run it first to see if you have any shorting problems caused by those crossbars.  Chances are you will not..and you can save yourself a bit of tedious work.    It's a particularly difficult conversion on the old, double-crossbar Shinoharas...not so bad on the single crossbar versions. 

Sprog Pi-Sprog-One

Jay
 

Hi!
Has any one used this system for their layouts yet?
It definitely looks intriguing, especially if you already have some Raspberry Pi' 3's laying around.
It is here: http://www.sprog.us.com/pisprog.html
They also offer a 3D Printed case for it.

Jay

Re: Sprog Pi-Sprog-One

Joseph Melhorn
 

I just recently bought one with the 3D printed case, but have not had a chance to hook it up and try it. My to-do list keeps getting longer and longer…

Joe Melhorn

Sahuarita, AZ

 

Re: Sprog Pi-Sprog-One

Rob Toler
 

Hi Jay, I have not used it so far but have considered it. Model Railroader recently did a review on this and found it to work pretty well using either Android or Apple throttle apps. I am currently using a Lenz DCC system so I might not need the Sprog part but using the Lenz computer interface, which I already have, I should be able to interface to the Raspberry Pi to use cell phone throttles and JMRI for programming etc. 

Re: Sprog Pi-Sprog-One

John M Wallis
 

Hi Folks:

 

Our club used the Pi-SPROG 1 as the command station/booster for a T-TRAK layout we set up last October. It worked very well with one exception.

 

A normal DCC Booster attempts to restart automatically after shutting down due to a short. The Pi-SOROG 1 shuts down, but requires a manual turn track power back on.

 

Regards,

 

 

John Wallis

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Rob Toler
Sent: Thursday, January 17, 2019 10:10 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Sprog Pi-Sprog-One

 

Hi Jay, I have not used it so far but have considered it. Model Railroader recently did a review on this and found it to work pretty well using either Android or Apple throttle apps. I am currently using a Lenz DCC system so I might not need the Sprog part but using the Lenz computer interface, which I already have, I should be able to interface to the Raspberry Pi to use cell phone throttles and JMRI for programming etc. 

Wiring help needed

Tim Lee
 

Hello 
I have built the atlas Ho-16 layout from the atlas book 11 atlas ho layouts for every space. I have purchased a Digitrax Zephyr XTra. Being new to model railroads, and Dcc, I’m looking for advice as how to wire this. Do I need the plastic track joiners. If so where should they be placed. Also do I need any other dcc electronic devices .
Any advice is greatly appreciated

Tim

Re: Wiring help needed

Jay
 
Edited

Tim,
Generally you won't need to isolate most places.
Reverser loops are different animal.
That layout looks like there are no reverser sections.
On a layout that size, you might want to consider a Digitrax PM42 Quad Power Manager.
This would split up the layout, for electrical short protection.

Jay

Re: Wiring help needed

Al Silverstein
 

Tim,
 
Should you determine that you need to divide your layout into power districts with the Digitrax Zephyr Xtra as the command station then I have four suggestions of value:
 
1) Be sure to set the trip current of the PM42 to 1.5 amps,
2) Be sure to set the trip speed of the PM42 to the fastest setting,
3) Be sure to set the command station to the slowest trip setting of 1/2 second,
4) and if you can afford it use the DCC Specialties PM42 breakout board which makes wiring the PM42 easier.
 
Note here that there are other circuit breakers available but should you choose one of those other circuit breakers you will still need to set the current to below that of the command station capabilities, set the circuit breaker to be as fast as possible, and set the command station to respond slower than the external circuit breaker.
 
Also make sure that the wiring between the command station and the circuit breaker and the circuit breaker and the rail bus is at least the same size as the rail bus.
 
Al Silverstein
 

Re: Wiring help needed

Tim Lee
 

Please be patient as I’m new to this. Are you saying that I need a digitrax pm42 ? I can purchase one.  Do I then wire from zephyr to pm 42 then to track bus ? Or 4 power lines to 4 different areas of track from pm 42 


On Jan 19, 2019, at 7:59 PM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

[Edited Message Follows]

Tim,
Generally you won't need to isolate most places.
Reverser loops are different animal.
That layout looks like there are no reverser sections.
On a layout that size, you might want to consider a Digitrax PM42 Quad Power Manager.
This would split up the layout, for electrical short protection.

Jay

Re: Wiring help needed

Al Silverstein
 

Tim,
 
Using a circuit breaker like the PM42 is not generally necessary with a Digitrax Zephyr command station. The Zephyr was designed for smaller layouts with one or two operators in mind. The current output of the Zephyr is only 3 amps.
 
External circuit breakers are generally used to protect a layout where multiple operators are operating multiple trains where a short in one area would drastically effect a second or third operator operating trains in other areas of the layout.
 
Al

From: Tim Lee
Sent: Saturday, January 19, 2019 9:25 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Wiring help needed
 
Please be patient as I’m new to this. Are you saying that I need a digitrax pm42 ? I can purchase one.  Do I then wire from zephyr to pm 42 then to track bus ? Or 4 power lines to 4 different areas of track from pm 42


On Jan 19, 2019, at 7:59 PM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

[Edited Message Follows]

Tim,
Generally you won't need to isolate most places.
Reverser loops are different animal.
That layout looks like there are no reverser sections.
On a layout that size, you might want to consider a Digitrax PM42 Quad Power Manager.
This would split up the layout, for electrical short protection.

Jay

N scale DCC locomotive

Don Poitras
 

Can my n scale  DCC decoder equipped locomotive haul other locomotives that are analogue or only DCC ready on my future n scale DCC layout or do they all have to have decoders and programmed to my nce power cab?Thanks,Don

Re: N scale DCC locomotive

Glenn
 

NO!

The motors would not run and possibly overheat with the DCC current on the rails.

With the motors not running you would only be dragging the engines.

The only way you could accomplish coupling the engines together would be disconnecting them electrically and removing gears at the axle letting the wheels turn freely.

Glenn

-----Original Message-----
From: donvicpoitras@...
Sent: Jan 20, 2019 4:21 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] N scale DCC locomotive

Can my n scale  DCC decoder equipped locomotive haul other locomotives that are analogue or only DCC ready on my future n scale DCC layout or do they all have to have decoders and programmed to my nce power cab?Thanks,Don

Re: N scale DCC locomotive

Don Poitras
 

Hello Glenn,Understood.Other than disconnecting them electrically,to follow the lead loco,would I have to have decoders in all of them and program them individually in my power cab and controll them individually?I apologise,if these questions sound silly and stupid to you,but I honestly don't have a clue.This is all new to me and bottom line....I'm hooked on trains!If you could help me ,you'd be my HERO!👍😁Don....have a good one!
From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Glenn <ghazel@...>
Sent: January 20, 2019 6:47:56 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] N scale DCC locomotive
 
NO!

The motors would not run and possibly overheat with the DCC current on the rails.

With the motors not running you would only be dragging the engines.

The only way you could accomplish coupling the engines together would be disconnecting them electrically and removing gears at the axle letting the wheels turn freely.

Glenn

-----Original Message-----
From: donvicpoitras@...
Sent: Jan 20, 2019 4:21 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] N scale DCC locomotive

Can my n scale  DCC decoder equipped locomotive haul other locomotives that are analogue or only DCC ready on my future n scale DCC layout or do they all have to have decoders and programmed to my nce power cab?Thanks,Don

Re: N scale DCC locomotive

Jay
 
Edited

This may have been overkill on my part.
All of my engines have decoders in them.
The Double Headed units are consisted in JMRI.
This was under the consist tab in JMRI.
Each consist is given their own address.
Even my 4 unit passenger consist is one address.
This makes life much easier.

Jay

Re: Wiring help needed

Jerry Michels
 

Tim,

You got the basic idea, the PM42 would be wired after the Zephyr, and then out to the layout.  The PM42 provides short circuit protection, but also gives you the ability to divide the layout into four separate blocks, each with its own short-circuit protection.  So if a train derails in one of the blocks, trains keep running in the other three.  The block with the short circuit will automatically reset itself once the short is removed.

One note, if you do decide to buy a PM42, also buy the PM42 breakout board offered by Accu-Lites.  It make installation very, very easy.  If not, you are looking a using a 44-pin connector which you need to wire yourself.
 
Jerry Michels
Amarillo Railroad Museum

Re: Wiring help needed

Chuck Stiles
 

Tim

I don't have access to the Atlas layout design you refereed to so I don't want to comment on the specifics of the layout or if it would require a PM42.
I do know this from experience. You can wire and Run your layout with the Zephyr. Wiring provision for a future PM42 might be advised. If you can Post a copy of your layout to the Group may make things easier.
Placement of the plastic insulation joiners is critical. Now is the time to decide what you want to do with your layout in the future, and install your buss wiring accordingly. Take into consideration if you want to create blocks, and possibly future automated signaling, operating crossing gates etc. Trying to create blocks at a later date can be more difficult.

Good Luck
Chuck
Brick NJ 

Re: Wiring help needed

Jay
 

Re: Wiring help needed

Don Vollrath
 

Tim, If the layout is indeed that of https://www.trainsetsonly.com/page/TSO/PROD/150-HO16 as Jay has suggested then...
1. There are no reversing loops so no DCC polarity reverser is needed.
2, You might want to isolate one or more sections for either electronic circuit breaker or track occupancy detectors for signaling, etc. Passing sidings are a good location for this.
3. The easiest way to do #2 is to provide plastic isolating joiners on all 4 rails of the frog end of mainline turnouts/track switches.
4. Doing #3 forces you to provide individual DCC power feeders to all isolated sections of track. Drop these feeders down under the layout to connect to either a common DCC bus following the general flow of track... OR as each track section is fed through individual occupancy sensors or circuit breakers added now or later to suit your plans.
5. Put your DCC command station/booster near the middle of the layout "L" and fan out the DCC track power bus in both directions to flow under the layout, but do not connect it up into a continuous loop. Use #18 or larger wire for the DCC main bus... in twisted pair or 'zip' cord.
6. If you plan on using accessory decoders make provisions for a separate DCC feeder sub-bus to power those units. In that case provide an electronic CB (PSX is the suggested brand) for the main DCC bus feeding the track and wire up the accessory sub-bus directly from the booster output.  

DonV

Re: Wiring help needed

Carl
 

Hello Tim:

The isolated track can also be wired as a program track. Then once programmed you can switch to DCC and test run the locomotive without picking it up.

Carl.

On 1/22/2019 11:52 AM, Don Vollrath wrote:
Tim, If the layout is indeed that of https://www.trainsetsonly.com/page/TSO/PROD/150-HO16 as Jay has suggested then...
1. There are no reversing loops so no DCC polarity reverser is needed.
2, You might want to isolate one or more sections for either electronic circuit breaker or track occupancy detectors for signaling, etc. Passing sidings are a good location for this.
3. The easiest way to do #2 is to provide plastic isolating joiners on all 4 rails of the frog end of mainline turnouts/track switches.
4. Doing #3 forces you to provide individual DCC power feeders to all isolated sections of track. Drop these feeders down under the layout to connect to either a common DCC bus following the general flow of track... OR as each track section is fed through individual occupancy sensors or circuit breakers added now or later to suit your plans.
5. Put your DCC command station/booster near the middle of the layout "L" and fan out the DCC track power bus in both directions to flow under the layout, but do not connect it up into a continuous loop. Use #18 or larger wire for the DCC main bus... in twisted pair or 'zip' cord.
6. If you plan on using accessory decoders make provisions for a separate DCC feeder sub-bus to power those units. In that case provide an electronic CB (PSX is the suggested brand) for the main DCC bus feeding the track and wire up the accessory sub-bus directly from the booster output.  

DonV

Virus-free. www.avast.com

Jack Wabbit

David S <docdata3d@...>
 

I posted this on another DCC groups but no answer yet so here it goes again.

I just purchased a Jack Wabbit Quad for Tortoise switch machines and have some questions prior to wiring it up.  I'm emailing with Erick at the place where it was purchased but so far, I'm still not understanding everything I need in know.

The unit can be powered by DCC track voltage or external DC.   The Tortoise switch machines need to DC to operate but need the DCC to get the signal to throw the machine. 

So, if the JW is powered by DCC, where does the DC come in for Tortoise throws?  If it is powered by DC, where do the DCC signals come from to tell the Tortoise to switch?

If I powered it with DCC, can I still use the manual pushbuttons to throw the machines or is pushbutton use only for DC power to the JW only?

Thanks,
Dave