Date   

Re: Indicators for turnout position

Max Maginness
 

Nick

 

With the built  decoder  in the SMAIL the pins 1 and 8 connector do not have the same function as  1 and 8 on the basic tortoise and my suggestion does not apply.  While there is DC inside the unit to actually control the motor but you cannot get at it.  
Sorry about the further run around.

Max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Nick Ostrosky
Sent: Saturday, December 28, 2019 3:14 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Indicators for turnout position

 

Yes, basic green machine with the built-in decoder (I believe referred to as SMAIL).  No DC involved at all, I power these from the track bus so the Power Cab/JMRI/WI Throttle can throw them.


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Max Maginness
 

The Walthers system uses servo motors that operate differently from a Tortoise.  Servos  use   the three wire connection – common, power and control wires respectively. They are incompatible with the Tortoise design.
  

My best suggestions if you want DCC control are:  
 1)  go fully with the Walthers system  OR
 2) use the SMAILS with panel pushbuttons as shown in the diagram at the bottom  of page 3 of their  instructions and separately use   the switch contacts on pins 2,3,4 or 5,6,7 to control panel lights . This will need a separate power source for the lights.

There are other alternatives if you start with basic Tortoise machines but you may be committed with the SMAILS version  you have?

 

BTW it’s a bad idea to have the switch machines get their  operating power from the DCC bus unless you run a separate  one from that for track power. Otherwise a short on the track will also prevent moving the turnouts.

If you would like to discuss on the alternatives   please contact me off line.

 

Max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Nick Ostrosky
Sent: Saturday, December 28, 2019 5:08 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Indicators for turnout position

 

It would probably help if I clarified further.  I did also purchase the Walthers distribution block 942-111, which I originally thought was DC only until last night when I realized is has 8 pins for I/O from a DCC device (e.g., my track power, and yes, don't I feel silly for not noticing this immediately).  It in turn has 8 three-wire outputs to power 8 turnouts.  Confusion point #1: why three wires to the turnout when only pins 1 and 8 on the Tortoise are used, acknowledging a Walthers turnout control may use this for other purposes (see 942-101 board image)?  Where would that third wire go on a Tortoise?  The way these are normally wired is distribution block to turnout, turnout to fascia button/LEDs.  My assumption at this point is the distribution block, and the Walthers turnout control, do "something" with that third wire, and I'm not seeing a clear equivalent to the Tortoise.

So, in short, is it possible to wire a Tortoise in the same fashion using these components, or is this all simply proprietary and works on Walthers only?  Thanks for helping, this should probably be a lot simpler than I'm making it.


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Nick Ostrosky
 

It would probably help if I clarified further.  I did also purchase the Walthers distribution block 942-111, which I originally thought was DC only until last night when I realized is has 8 pins for I/O from a DCC device (e.g., my track power, and yes, don't I feel silly for not noticing this immediately).  It in turn has 8 three-wire outputs to power 8 turnouts.  Confusion point #1: why three wires to the turnout when only pins 1 and 8 on the Tortoise are used, acknowledging a Walthers turnout control may use this for other purposes (see 942-101 board image)?  Where would that third wire go on a Tortoise?  The way these are normally wired is distribution block to turnout, turnout to fascia button/LEDs.  My assumption at this point is the distribution block, and the Walthers turnout control, do "something" with that third wire, and I'm not seeing a clear equivalent to the Tortoise.

So, in short, is it possible to wire a Tortoise in the same fashion using these components, or is this all simply proprietary and works on Walthers only?  Thanks for helping, this should probably be a lot simpler than I'm making it.


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Nick Ostrosky
 

Yes, basic green machine with the built-in decoder (I believe referred to as SMAIL).  No DC involved at all, I power these from the track bus so the Power Cab/JMRI/WI Throttle can throw them.


Re: Powering turntable and lights

Craig Zeni
 

How about simply programming the decoder so that the function outputs are non-directional?  I do it with my deciders.

Craig Zeni
Cary, NC
Despatched from my infernal Android

On Fri, Dec 27, 2019, 18:02 Max Maginness <m.maginness@...> wrote:

The white and yellow can just be tied together. That will leave the lights on controlled on/off by   F0. However the current capacity will be still limited by the decoder.   

max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of wirefordcc
Sent: Friday, December 27, 2019 10:53 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Powering turntable and lights

 

Monty,

I don't think you want to use the headlight (white wire) and rear light (yellow) for your yard and roundhouse lights.  These are tied to the forward and reverse direction of the locomotive.  Both usually can't be on at the same time and as you change direction of your turntable the lights will switch on an off.

For you yard and roundhouse lights, unless you feel compelled to control them with DCC, just wire them up to a switch.

Allan Gartner
Wiring For DCC 


Re: Powering turntable and lights

monty cunningham
 

DUH !!  I knew that!  Don't know what I was thinking.  Obviously I wasn't.
Thanks
Monty


Re: Powering turntable and lights

Max Maginness
 

The white and yellow can just be tied together. That will leave the lights on controlled on/off by   F0. However the current capacity will be still limited by the decoder.   

max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of wirefordcc
Sent: Friday, December 27, 2019 10:53 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Powering turntable and lights

 

Monty,

I don't think you want to use the headlight (white wire) and rear light (yellow) for your yard and roundhouse lights.  These are tied to the forward and reverse direction of the locomotive.  Both usually can't be on at the same time and as you change direction of your turntable the lights will switch on an off.

For you yard and roundhouse lights, unless you feel compelled to control them with DCC, just wire them up to a switch.

Allan Gartner
Wiring For DCC 


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Max Maginness
 

Nick

 

The suggestion (at least the one I made) did not involve track power at all – just putting the Leds in series with the DC power to the tortoise. To be clear by tortoise do you mean the basic green machine with an 8 pin connector or are you referring to this with a directly attached external circuit so you cannot access the connector pins?

Max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Nick Ostrosky
Sent: Friday, December 27, 2019 12:33 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Indicators for turnout position

 

The net result of running one of the track feeds to pin 1 of the 942-121 and back out of pin 3 to the #8 pin on the Tortoise was both LEDs showing yellow and the push button having no effect whatsoever.  Activating the turnout via the Power Cab still worked but both LEDs remained yellow.  Based on your suggestion I also tried running the power into pin 2 on the 942-121 and back out both the 1 and 3 pins to the Tortoise #8 with the same result.  I'm guessing that the Walther parts were made to work strictly with DC, since that's what they are selling as a power supply, and as a result this may not have been the "plug and play" I was hoping to find.  Back to Walthers they go...


Re: Using frog juicers for polarity control

mgj21932
 

Please excuse my lack of sophistication re DCC wiring.  I am new to this blog -- thanks for letting me join -- and have found the wiring instructions in the related web site invaluable.  I am in the process of converting an older DC-wired layout to DCC operation.  I have an NEC Controller and am starting the rewiring.  

From what I have read I understand that the Tam Valley hex-juicer can be used to auto-reverse polarity on up to three separate circuits.  In each case, I understand that two connections are used on the hex-juicer, one each connected to the two track rails, with both track rails for the specific segment insulated from the rails on adjacent segments which could have different polarity.  So far so good.  And so much better than the cumbersome arrangements needed to operate in DC.

I also understand that for non-reversing segments, such as a siding, a single wire from the hex-juicer (or from a single juicer) can be connected to one track rail, which is isolated on the siding side of the switch from the rail on the mainline side of the switch; but the other rail on the siding side of the switch need not be electrically isolated.  Is that correct?  

As the layout is currently designed, I can reverse train direction in both directions around the layout, or in simplest mode simply run a train in a figure eight in either direction (without changing any switches).

In addition to the hex-juicer, would you recommend circuit breakers  for each segment?  If so, where I have 4 reversing segments (both track rails isolated and wires to both track rails from the juicer(s)), plus two sidings (with only one track rail isolated), do I need 6 circuit breakers?  Or just 4?  

I have not gotten to the issue of actual control of the switches (until the basic wiring is resolved I'll be throwing switches manually and operating only one engine at a time), but would appreciate any recommendations you might have for switch control.  

Thanks again for any insight.
Bill Demarest
mgj21932@...


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Nick Ostrosky
 

The net result of running one of the track feeds to pin 1 of the 942-121 and back out of pin 3 to the #8 pin on the Tortoise was both LEDs showing yellow and the push button having no effect whatsoever.  Activating the turnout via the Power Cab still worked but both LEDs remained yellow.  Based on your suggestion I also tried running the power into pin 2 on the 942-121 and back out both the 1 and 3 pins to the Tortoise #8 with the same result.  I'm guessing that the Walther parts were made to work strictly with DC, since that's what they are selling as a power supply, and as a result this may not have been the "plug and play" I was hoping to find.  Back to Walthers they go...


Re: Powering turntable and lights

Allan AE2V
 

Monty,

I don't think you want to use the headlight (white wire) and rear light (yellow) for your yard and roundhouse lights.  These are tied to the forward and reverse direction of the locomotive.  Both usually can't be on at the same time and as you change direction of your turntable the lights will switch on an off.

For you yard and roundhouse lights, unless you feel compelled to control them with DCC, just wire them up to a switch.

Allan Gartner
Wiring For DCC 


Re: Powering turntable and lights

Steve Hubbard
 

I am using an older NCE decoder to run my Bowser turntable motor as it allowed me to control speed. I put a max output cap voltage to the motor for realistic turntable rotation speed. I was playing with momentum to slow start and stop of turntable.  Considered running bridge shack light off decoder however it would require 2 more contact wipers on the bridge mechanism so I opted out.. 


Powering turntable and lights

monty cunningham
 

I am thinking about using a decoder I pirated out of a Bachmann 2-8-0 to power turntable and to power roundhouse and yard lights.
Thinking I can use the orange and gray wires to power the turntable motor and use the yellow/blue and white/blue to power the yard and roundhouse lights.  Wire the red and black wires directly to the track bus.  Use some nominal address like 999 ?
I have several Evan Designs LEDs that I can use.  Was wondering about wiring them.  Can I use more than one of them on each circuit?  If I can should they be wired in series or parallel?
Good idea or Bad idea?
Thanks
Monty


Re: Indicators for turnout position

Max Maginness
 

If you are OK with using these just for indicators, try disconnecting the wire presently going to   either pin 1 or pin 8 of the tortoise and connecting it  instead to pin 1 of the 942-121 , then connecting Pin 3 of the 942-121  to the  pin on the tortoise you removed the wire from.

 

If the Yellow/Green indications are reversed from what you would like, swap the wires to pins 1 and 3 of the 942-121.

 

It maybe that the Tortoise will run slowly or stall with this change, since the LEDs will reduce the voltage available to it. However maybe worth a try

Pins 5 and 7 in the tortoise are simply switch contacts and cannot  by themselves  provide any power for the LED’s (or anything else)

Max

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Nick Ostrosky
Sent: Thursday, December 26, 2019 3:36 AM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] Indicators for turnout position

 

I scanned the materials on the site but either it isn't covered or I'm too dense to interpret what I'm reading and apply it as needed.  NCE system using five Tortoise machines with the built-in decoder, powered off the track bus.  I was hoping to wire up fascia indicators using Walthers Layout Control System Dual LED Fascia Turnout Controller part #942-121, connecting to pins 5-7 on the Tortoise - the quick connect cable seemed to make this a simple process and would give me the option of push button control in addition to cab control.  After reading the available materials I understand this would not give me push button control, but I would expect to at least see the indicators light for position.  No matter how I connect the wires I get nothing.  What am I missing, and would Walthers Two Color LED Fascia Indicator part #942-151 be the more workable option?

What I'm trying to avoid is having to buy a bunch of separate components - LEDs, resistors, connectors, etc.  Looking for more of a plug-and-play option, with push button control nice to have but certainly not necessary for a one-or-two operator layout.  Thanks!


Indicators for turnout position

Nick Ostrosky
 

I scanned the materials on the site but either it isn't covered or I'm too dense to interpret what I'm reading and apply it as needed.  NCE system using five Tortoise machines with the built-in decoder, powered off the track bus.  I was hoping to wire up fascia indicators using Walthers Layout Control System Dual LED Fascia Turnout Controller part #942-121, connecting to pins 5-7 on the Tortoise - the quick connect cable seemed to make this a simple process and would give me the option of push button control in addition to cab control.  After reading the available materials I understand this would not give me push button control, but I would expect to at least see the indicators light for position.  No matter how I connect the wires I get nothing.  What am I missing, and would Walthers Two Color LED Fascia Indicator part #942-151 be the more workable option?

What I'm trying to avoid is having to buy a bunch of separate components - LEDs, resistors, connectors, etc.  Looking for more of a plug-and-play option, with push button control nice to have but certainly not necessary for a one-or-two operator layout.  Thanks!


Re: Powering Points

 

Also known as "Music Wire" .  "Do it Best" hardware affiliates have the
best prices I have seen and have free shipping to their affiliates.

Best Regards,

Ken Harstine


Re: Powering Points

Carl
 

Hi:

Sorry: They also have music wire:

https://www.mcmaster.com/8908K34

Carl.

On 12/16/2019 3:09 PM, Richard Sutcliffe wrote:
Not likely, note that this is "softened"
What is needed is steel wire - and music has some "spring" to it.


Re: Powering Points

Richard Sutcliffe
 

Not likely, note that this is "softened"
What is needed is steel wire - and music has some "spring" to it.


Re: Powering Points

Carl
 

Hi Greg:

Is this what you are looking for:

https://www.mcmaster.com/6517K66

100 pieces for $11. All straight a foot long.

Carl.

On 12/16/2019 8:20 AM, Greg Harter wrote:
Our club changes out all the .025" wire with .032' wire.  makes a big difference.Getting harder to find this stuff!!!!!!

Greg Harter


Re: Powering Points

John Cahill
 

In case it helps, I get mine from a supplier of parts for R/C aircraft where it is used (I believe) to connect servos to control surfaces.
John


On Mon, Dec 16, 2019 at 1:20 PM Greg Harter <greg1462@...> wrote:
Our club changes out all the .025" wire with .032' wire.  makes a big difference.Getting harder to find this stuff!!!!!!

Greg Harter

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