Date   

Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Nick Ostrosky
 

Interesting.  I don't have any Athearn locos at the moment (Bowser/Stewart, a couple Overland, and a lone Bachman).  I would be interested if anyone else ran into similar problems with other brands, and will keep this in mind as I get into the install.  Thanks!


Re: Wiring Programming Track

Jim Betz
 

Bill,
  The safest way is to use a 4PDT (4 pole double throw) switch that
cuts out either side of the programming track when in programming
track mode.  The auto switch still allows a loco to creep off the end
of the programming track.
  Other guys have put physical blocks on both ends of the programming 
track such as having a solenoid operated rod that comes up between
the rails (at both ends).  This also needs a multi-pole double throw
switch.  Its advantage is that the loco can never walk clear off the
programming track when doing a lot of reads such as when doing a
read-all-sheets in DecoderPro.  The disadvantage is it is more
complicated and so more work and also slightly more likely to fail.

                                                                                           - Jim


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Dale Gloer
 

Nick,

I have installed 3 of the Rapido Trains Railcrew uncouplers on my layout.  I was able to retrofit them into my existing benchwork and ballasted track following their instructions without having to remove the track.  They work very well although I found a little quirk.  If I have the uncoupler enabled and run a locomotives over the uncoupler it will no longer function.  I have to re enable the uncoupler.  Mostly this happens with some older Athearn locos.  It is caused by magnetic interaction with the loco and is due to the way the mechanism works.  Not a big deal, I just wait to enable the uncoupler until a loco has passed it.  The only downside to what you originally wrote is that they are not easily controlled by DCC without some wiring modifications.  If  you do modify the wring then I believe an DCC Accessory decoder that will operate Kato switch machines will operate the uncoupler (I haven't tried it).

Dale Gloer


Wiring Programming Track

mgj21932
 

I have an NCE PowerCab. Originally I wired a totally separate (physically and electrically via DPDT switch) programming track. Due to revision to track layout and space limitations, that track segment no longer exists and the opportunity for a physically separate programming track does not exist.
Looking at the wiring diagram for the NCE Auto-Switch it is unclear how the non-mainline segment wired as the programing track is powered when not in programming mode. Is the power vectored to that segment via the wires from the programming track output from the Auto-Switch when in non-programming mode?
Or do I need to also separately wire power to this segment from the mainline outputs on the Auto-Switch in order to power this segment when in non-programming mode?

I assume the former and not the latter, but would appreciate confirmation and/or guidance.

Asked same question in NCE forum (hope doing so doesn’t violate any protocol), so apologies to any who receive this question twice (and keeping gingers crossed that I don’t receive conflicting advice).

Thanks in advance,
Bill Demarest
N&W Steam Power


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Nick Ostrosky
 

I was actually considering the Rapido Trains Railcrew uncoupler.  I've watched a couple install videos and these seem to be the better/easier option for retrofit in my situation.


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Dale Gloer
 

Maybe I missed it but what type of remote uncoupler are you using?  At our club I have installed a number of KD Electromagnetic uncouplers.  We wanted to be able to push a button and have the uncouplers active for about 8 seconds.  These uncouplers draw a lot of current and leaving them on for too long will cause them to incinerate the coils.  I built a timing circuit using an LM555 for timing and a power Darlington transistor to switch the uncoupler power.  Note that these uncouplers require about 24 volts at 2 or 3 amps to operate successfully. The circuit worked but suffered frequent failures due to electronic noise cause by switching the power on and off.  I found a circuit that employed a relay and better design than my attempt on eBay for a few dollars each.  These work well and although we just use a pushbutton in the panel, they could be controlled by a DCC accessory decoder with a  couple of parts to interface them together.

Dale Gloer
Layout Supervisor at SAMRC


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Nick Ostrosky
 

Thank you all for your responses, it definitely sounds like this is better done with 12v DC.


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

whmvd
 

Maybe you could look at modifying the uncouplers to use servos instead? Much friendlier on current with so little load as an uncoupler causes, and no maximum duration. They only draw noticeably when something's actively working against them.

Wouter


On Thu, 8 Oct 2020 at 20:22, Nick Ostrosky <nick79ostr@...> wrote:
I have a couple spots on my layout where I'd like to use remote uncouplers and didn't see what I was looking for in past posts here.  I've seen references about activating these through a DCC throttle rather than using an SPST toggle (e.g., accessory decoder like NCE SwitchKat) but unlike a turnout I thought I would need to leave the power on until I could separate the cars, so at least a few seconds.  The NCE manual I downloaded references changing the “ON TIME” of the decoder outputs but doesn't indicate any type of "maximum" setting.  Does anyone have experience setting this up and recommendations for appropriate settings?  Is there a downside to operating this through DCC (i.e., having it on for 10-15 seconds draining power from other operations)?  Thanks!


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

wirefordcc
 

Hi Nick,

CVs in decoders have a maximum value of 255.  Of course, software for a particular CV may be lower.  You can experiment or contact Ed at NCE Tech support.  He's helpful and prompt.

Your remote uncouplers MIGHT draw more current than the decoder you choose to use.  I wasn't clear if you intend to use an accessory decoder or a loco decoder.  If you tried to use a loco decoder, you would have to select it first.  That wouldn't be convenient. Whatever you do, make sure your uncoupler doesn't stay on too long or it may overheat.  If it gets too hot, starts to melt, or emits smoke, you will know you went too far!

Allan Gartner
Wiring for DCC


Re: Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Paul O <pomilian@...>
 

Nick, the SwitchKat manual says that a CV can be set to a maximum of 255 (in milliseconds) which would give you about a quarter of a second of on-time max.
A momentary pushbutton switch wired to a separate power supply may be the best way to go. I believe those uncouplers have a pretty high current draw.

A DIY option would be a manual decoder, 555 timer, relay.

Paul  O


Groups.io Links:

You receive all messages sent to this group.

View/Reply Online (#12142) | Reply To Group | Reply To Sender | Mute This Topic | New Topic
Your Subscription | Contact Group Owner | Unsubscribe [pomilian@...]

_._,_._,_


Controlling uncouplers via DCC

Nick Ostrosky
 

I have a couple spots on my layout where I'd like to use remote uncouplers and didn't see what I was looking for in past posts here.  I've seen references about activating these through a DCC throttle rather than using an SPST toggle (e.g., accessory decoder like NCE SwitchKat) but unlike a turnout I thought I would need to leave the power on until I could separate the cars, so at least a few seconds.  The NCE manual I downloaded references changing the “ON TIME” of the decoder outputs but doesn't indicate any type of "maximum" setting.  Does anyone have experience setting this up and recommendations for appropriate settings?  Is there a downside to operating this through DCC (i.e., having it on for 10-15 seconds draining power from other operations)?  Thanks!


Re: QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

PennsyNut
 

v6 should be updated to v7. I don't know how, but that is a major problem with QSI.
There is a group, but it's for the newer QSI Titan decoders. https://groups.io/g/QSIndustries/topics
I have a v7 with problems and there are few people in that QSI groups.io that were able to help. In JMRI, go to DP, Actions tab, Single CV programmer, you should be able to read and write from that. As others have said, even though it's red, you don't need to bother with it unless it's critical. Also, I might add. I never say what or which is the best. I do not agree with that approach. All systems, decoders, etc. have their good and bad points. NCE vs Digitrax is BS. QSI vs LOC, WOW, Tsunami is also BS. You takes your pick, pays your money and get what you wish. If you like it, fine. If you don't, you change. But I don't knock any company and I sure wish others would quit using a negative approach. Just IMHO of course, no offense meant.
Morgan Bilbo, slightly over one year with very basic DCC


Re: QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

Craig Zeni
 

1000% agree.  The QSI decoders are well past their prime; the Decoder Buddy makes the upgrade pretty straightforward.

Craig Zeni
Cary, NC
Despatched from my infernal Android


On Tue, Oct 6, 2020, 12:28 Thomas McLaren's via groups.io <mclae5-lists=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
I have had good luck and easy conversion replacing QSI decoders with a Decoder Buddy. Converts the QSI to a 21-pin motherboard. I re-use the OEM speakers.
I then install a Loksound, but any 21 pin decoder works.
There is a newer Decoder Buddy Mini if the original is too large.

After years of fighting QSI, this is the best remedy I have found.

Thomas
DeSoto, TX 


Re: QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

thomasmclae
 

I have had good luck and easy conversion replacing QSI decoders with a Decoder Buddy. Converts the QSI to a 21-pin motherboard. I re-use the OEM speakers.
I then install a Loksound, but any 21 pin decoder works.
There is a newer Decoder Buddy Mini if the original is too large.

After years of fighting QSI, this is the best remedy I have found.

Thomas
DeSoto, TX 


Re: QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

Jim Betz
 

Ed,
  The PowerCab is the best programming environment you can have.  The 
QSI V6 decoders are some of the most notorious "problem children".  To
read the CVs in a V6 decoder I -often- have to go back to the individual
sheet and do a "Read Full Sheet" ... often several times before I get them
all.  You can also go to the "CVs" pane and read just one CV until you
get it read.  
  Having an entry in your DecoderPro roster that has a few RED CVs is
not a problem unless/until you feel the need to change them and want to
first read them.

  You may have better success if you can set up a totally isolated 
programming track section of your layout.  Be certain to read up on
how to do that the "best way" before you do so - there are instructions
on several web sites for doing so - just Google "NCE PowerCab 
programming track".  Locomotives "creep" during long read all CVs
and it is -very- important that they not go past the end of the
programming track.  The reason for having an isolated programming
track is to reduce any other loads that might reduce the ability of the
PowerCab to read/write CVs.  Many guys use a siding somewhere
that can be isolated with the flip of a DPDT.

  I have about a dozen V6 equipped locos and have stopped using them.
They are waiting to be converted to Tsunami 2 decoders.  (There are
other problems with the V6 decoders than the difficulty reading them.)
YMMV.

  DP is absolutely the best and I don't even consider any other method
for programming locos.
                                                                         - Jim


Re: QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

 

Ed,
I'm not sure where to find it on the other Decoder Pro pages but you can change it on the CVs page. Are you in Program Track mode? If so try reading the CV directly. During a "Read All,"  Decoder Pro will sometimes try to read a given CV, fail, and then try again later. An intermittent connection to the decoder will cause DP to change that CV to Red. Make sure you connections are clean.

As always, be in good health and do good work.

-Michael Boyle

 

          The miracle is this: The more we share the more we have.
                      Leonard Nimoy


QSI ver6 SW8 Decoder

Ed
 

I recently purchased a Walthers/P2K SW8 locomotive (HO scale) with a factory installed QSI ver6 SW8 decoder. My DCC system is an NCE Power Cab connected with Decoder Pro to a programming track. All went well as I made some minor changes to the programming until I did a "read all CVs". 4 CVs showed up as red: CV 1; 52.14, 52.28, and 56.10. The first 3 were cleared up by going to the appropriate page in Decoder Pro and making a change to the listed CV. However, CV 56.10 is not that easy. No where in the Decoder Pro program can I find a reference to that specific CV. The QSI manual lists it as "speed step to SMPH scale factor (PI=10)".  What does it mean to have this CV as red in Decoder Pro? If I need to change it, what do I change? I checked the groups.io website and can find no group for QSI in HO scale.

Ed Robinson


Re: Email per request to “newbie”

D B
 

Yup.  Understood.  Thanks.  Was just confirming renewal. 
Bill


On Oct 4, 2020, at 10:48 AM, whmvd <vandoornw@...> wrote:


Hi Bill,

Don't know what, if anything, you now expect to happen, but your membership of groups.io and the groups you're in are managed by yourself on their site.

Wouter

On Sun, 4 Oct 2020 at 15:10, D B <1932mgj2@...> wrote:
New email to replace mgj21932@yahoo
Bill Demarest






Re: Email per request to “newbie”

whmvd
 

Hi Bill,

Don't know what, if anything, you now expect to happen, but your membership of groups.io and the groups you're in are managed by yourself on their site.

Wouter


On Sun, 4 Oct 2020 at 15:10, D B <1932mgj2@...> wrote:
New email to replace mgj21932@yahoo
Bill Demarest






Re: Wiring For DCC Website Update

D B
 

Thanks Jim. 


On Oct 3, 2020, at 12:33 PM, Jim Betz <jimbetz@...> wrote:

Bill,
  Sometimes our email providers 'automatically' mark/reject emails from groups.io
because they -think- it is spam.  When that happens somehow groups.io knows it
happened and they mark your user for "having a problem" (or even remove you
from the group).
  Go back and make sure you have the correct "status" on a group by group
basis (by using the online interface to groups).  Especially check your "email
delivery options" to make sure they are right.
                                                                                                   - Jim

921 - 940 of 13004