Date   

Re: DCC system resets when accelerating locomotives

wirefordcc
 

Hi Phil,

 

I’ve been thinking about your problem.  Can’t say that I’ve seen it before, but I try to give you some useful thoughts.

 

You may have a couple of unrelated problems.  First, you talk about “heavy” resistance.  Do you mean high resistance?  If so, what reading did you get?  If the suitcase connector did not go together just right, you might a high resistance or nothing at all.  High resistance in wires going to your track is something you do need to fix.  I don’t think a high resistance is the cause of your Power Pro resetting.

 

Regarding the Power Pro resetting, I’m thinking you have a load, like a locomotive that is drawing just enough current to pull the power supply for the Power Pro down enough that causes it to reset.  The Power Pro has a neat feature where it can display track current.  (Note:  I believe this only works with the Power Pro and I do not think it works if you got a SB5.)  With no locomotive or any lighted cars on the track, the reading should be zero or nearly so.  If you are reading an amp or more, something is definitely wrong.  If you are reading about 2 amps, then any additional load applied a locomotive that is starting up, MIGHT cause the problem you are seeing.  See page 58 for setting your Power Pro to display track current.  You may have to back up a page or two to find out how to get the Power Pro to display the screen on page 58.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DC

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Phil T. via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, September 15, 2021 2:42 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] DCC system resets when accelerating locomotives

 

On my NCE DCC Power Cab layout, after over 10 years of successful operation, my DCC locomotives began to reset the system after I had accelerated above 3 or 4 on the 28 speed setting. By reset, I mean that the system turned off and then went through its starting cycle.

Using my multi meter I looked for residence and found heavy resistance in one rail leading to a turnout. I suspect it must be the problem, but I don't know what to do about it. Should I make new wiring connections there? Should I get a new turnout? What is the best way to handle resisitance?

Additional info:

My layout is small. It's the Yule Central from the Small Railroads You Can Build, edited by Bob Hayden in 1983. It's an oval on a 4 x 6 foot table with two spurs, a tiny run around track, and a small two track stub yard. There are six Atlas snap turnouts and four DPDT switches for block control.

I coverted to DCC around 2010 by upgrading wiring. I installed a 14 gauge bus line and attached the 22 gauge feeders with solder and suitcase connectors.

I sent my PowerCab into NCE and they tested it and found that it was working perfectly (I have the 1.28C Chip). They suggested I test my decoders and wiring, and perhaps consider purchasing a Smart Booster.

Further testing my PowerCab system on an EZ Track oval showed my decoders and PowerCab were working fine. Some of my decoders required resets to factory defaults.

I tested my wiring for short circuits using the "quarter test," and each time the quarter was laid on both rails my system turned off.


Re: DCC system resets when accelerating locomotives

Jim Betz
 

Phil,

  The PowerCab is seeing a short/high amp draw - there's enough power
for the layout to come up but not enough for the added draw of trying to
move a loco.  Sound locos draw more than non-sound.  Did you add more
locos sitting on the track?  Even one more than you used to use can cause a
problem. 
  Take everything off the track (including cars), test one loco at a time to see
if it is one of your locos - no?  Now start adding additional locos one at a time
to see if it just too many at once.  Start adding cars back - say 3 or 4 at a
time - still no?
  Look for a tool laying on the track just out of sight - such as a screw driver
or pair of pliers.

  If you've made any recent track changes - look there.  If you've done any
recent scenery work look for possible shorts caused by same.

  You -will- find this and when you do it will be an "Ahah moment".  The
basic premise is "divide and conquer".
                                                                                                        - Jim


DCC system resets when accelerating locomotives

Phil T.
 

On my NCE DCC Power Cab layout, after over 10 years of successful operation, my DCC locomotives began to reset the system after I had accelerated above 3 or 4 on the 28 speed setting. By reset, I mean that the system turned off and then went through its starting cycle.

Using my multi meter I looked for residence and found heavy resistance in one rail leading to a turnout. I suspect it must be the problem, but I don't know what to do about it. Should I make new wiring connections there? Should I get a new turnout? What is the best way to handle resisitance?

Additional info:

My layout is small. It's the Yule Central from the Small Railroads You Can Build, edited by Bob Hayden in 1983. It's an oval on a 4 x 6 foot table with two spurs, a tiny run around track, and a small two track stub yard. There are six Atlas snap turnouts and four DPDT switches for block control.

I coverted to DCC around 2010 by upgrading wiring. I installed a 14 gauge bus line and attached the 22 gauge feeders with solder and suitcase connectors.

I sent my PowerCab into NCE and they tested it and found that it was working perfectly (I have the 1.28C Chip). They suggested I test my decoders and wiring, and perhaps consider purchasing a Smart Booster.

Further testing my PowerCab system on an EZ Track oval showed my decoders and PowerCab were working fine. Some of my decoders required resets to factory defaults.

I tested my wiring for short circuits using the "quarter test," and each time the quarter was laid on both rails my system turned off.


MERG (Model Electronic Railway Group)

JerryG
 

Several posts on this forum have referred to MERG CBUS as a layout control protocol (perhaps most popular in the UK where MERG is headquartered), and several people have referred to the many electronics kits made available by MERG.  I joined MERG about a year ago (it is a hobby organization with about 4000 members) and have much enjoyed participating in their Zoom meetings as well as reading their quarterly journal and “knowledgebase.”  They have said that Zoom meetings will continue indefinitely as it has boosted their geographic reach and made it a more worldwide organization.  DCC of course is core to many discussions.  Just passing this on in case others may also find this group of value.  See https://www.merg.org.uk/.

Jerry 
________________________________________________
jerryg2003@...


Re: Odd Behavior of Reversing Section

jfm2830
 

I've already changed the trip time.


Re: Digitrax Throttles not working

Puckdropper
 

Check for the flashing dot between F11 and F12 on a DT400. The dot has three states, off, on, and frustratingly flashing. It should be on and not flashing.

Press [Pwr] then [Y/+] to make the dot go steady.

Puckdropper


Re: Digitrax Throttles not working

john
 

Your problem sounded familiar as soon as you said, "My Club." if you have someone who uses their own throttle it probably wasn't attached to the layout and was not affected by a software change and should work. When you turn on Digitrax, it beeps a code that tells you the systems status. The codes are in your command station manual, there are a bunch. Have you reprogrammed your command station and boosters. They can only store so much information. When you start up, use one throttle and one engine (preferably a lighted, sound, engine), turn on the power, if the engine doesn't operate, touch Pwr,  +,  Pwr and try again. Don't program on your layout, If you have folks that program with their throttle, move them to an isolated command station on a test track. When a throttle speaks, EVERYTHING on the layout listens. If you have a short, the equipment will shut down and restart until the short clears and the ticking sound it makes is very subtle. If there is any noise, you wont hear the very light ticking. Parking on switches and across gaps are a common cause. You can roll across gaps and switches for a thousand years and everything is fine, park on one and you can have a short. Consider using Electronic Circuit Breakers or Digitrax PM42s to separate power districts. 

I am guessing that you have already discovered the problem or it vanished. It didn't vanish, someone unknowingly fixed it. We go for months, even do OP Sessions without a hitch in our Getty-Up and suddenly humanity is teetering on the edge of DCC heck. It almost always turns out to me something simple. 

An alternative solution is to brew a pot of coffee and arm-chair for a time, that is fun too.

I hope you have as much fun as i do.

jd

On Tuesday, August 31, 2021, 01:20:18 AM EDT, ronmerrill69 via groups.io <ronmerrill69@...> wrote:


We are experiencing a problem on our club layout, I am hopeful that you guys might be able to help. 
All of our throttles  are not working. I have already trouble shot all our loconet cable. All seemed to show working with LT1, either 3 or 4 lights. Thought maybe our computer guy might have downloaded a new version on JMRI, and nocked out the throttles. Any thought?


Digitrax Throttles not working

ronmerrill69
 

We are experiencing a problem on our club layout, I am hopeful that you guys might be able to help. 
All of our throttles  are not working. I have already trouble shot all our loconet cable. All seemed to show working with LT1, either 3 or 4 lights. Thought maybe our computer guy might have downloaded a new version on JMRI, and nocked out the throttles. Any thought?


Re: Odd Behavior of Reversing Section

 

You have to change the Trip time duration on the PSX's and possibly the DCS240
 
I had a similar situation with the HMRC lay out... I feeds several PXS-1 from 210 and a 220,  the PSX-1's feed several PSX-AR
 
I am forgetting what Option switch has to be set... CV55 and CV65.. page 14 on the PSX manual ???
 
The PSX-1 is "too fast" on short detection thus trips out prior to the AR flipping polarity
 
my two cents
 
Cheers,
bill
 



From: w4dccqa@groups.io [mailto:w4dccqa@groups.io] On Behalf Of jfm2830
Sent: Monday, August 30, 2021 5:26 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] Odd Behavior of Reversing Section

I've had a ongoing discussion on the DCC4EVERYONE forum but haven't reach a solution so thought I would try this group.  The problem I'm experiencing is that we have a reversing loop that is handled by a DCC Specialties PSX-AR while the rest of the section handled by a DCC Specialties PSX.  What we are seeing is that as you cross between sections, the PSX-AR switches just like it should but the PSX may trip with a momentary short depending which rail gap is bridged first, i.e., if the left rail gap is bridged first, no problem but if the right rail gap is bridged first the PSX momentarily shorts.  I've adjusted the delay of the PSX so the PSX-AR should react faster but that did not help.  My research makes me think that this problem may be related to the Common Rail wiring.  This is an old DC layout (construction started in 1949) in the Montana Museum of RR History in Great Falls that we have just converted to DCC.  Currently using a single Digitrax DCS240 for DCC power and a total of 12 PSXs and 2 PSX-ARs.  We anticipate the we will have to added additional boosters as club members convert to DCC.

Any thoughts or recommendations?

Thanks, John Moonan


Odd Behavior of Reversing Section

jfm2830
 

I've had a ongoing discussion on the DCC4EVERYONE forum but haven't reach a solution so thought I would try this group.  The problem I'm experiencing is that we have a reversing loop that is handled by a DCC Specialties PSX-AR while the rest of the section handled by a DCC Specialties PSX.  What we are seeing is that as you cross between sections, the PSX-AR switches just like it should but the PSX may trip with a momentary short depending which rail gap is bridged first, i.e., if the left rail gap is bridged first, no problem but if the right rail gap is bridged first the PSX momentarily shorts.  I've adjusted the delay of the PSX so the PSX-AR should react faster but that did not help.  My research makes me think that this problem may be related to the Common Rail wiring.  This is an old DC layout (construction started in 1949) in the Montana Museum of RR History in Great Falls that we have just converted to DCC.  Currently using a single Digitrax DCS240 for DCC power and a total of 12 PSXs and 2 PSX-ARs.  We anticipate the we will have to added additional boosters as club members convert to DCC.

Any thoughts or recommendations?

Thanks, John Moonan


Re: Can a Circuit Breaker be Shorted from the Input Side?

Rich
 

Thanks very much, Don. That is what I need to know. 

Rich


Re: Can a Circuit Breaker be Shorted from the Input Side?

Don Vollrath
 

Rich, once the booster trips all power is lost to the rest of the layout… (booster district) including that to the input, and therefore also the output, of any PSX-AR also also wired from that same booster. So yeah, power will be lost to that AR section as well but no harm will be caused as the booster and all CB and AR circuits attempt to recycle and restart/recover.


DonV


Re: DCC Bus reversing question

Blair
 

Hi Jim

Okay.  Back to the beginning.  With reference to the drawing I posted in the photo section. 

Correction 1: The two red marks to the left of the crossover move to the right of the crossover..

Correction 2: at the top left hand corner of the drawing, switch "Rail B" and "Rail A" so that they are consistent with the Main Layout trackage, which is all fixed polarity, Rail A on the "outside".  Note, it is shown as being driven from a PSX.

When the crossover turnouts are all aligned for 'straight through', the trackage from L to Q will have the same polarity as the Main Layout.

When the crossover turnouts are aligned to crossover (they will all move together), the trackage from L to Q will have to have reversed polarity, so that they are consistent with the polarity of the turnouts.

That reversing of polarity is what I'm getting at in this thread; as stated, I COULD simply throw a DPDT relay with the turnouts, but that causes the usual power cycling for anything in the staging yard due to the slow nature of large mechanical relays.

With the AR section(30' long) across the top, the entire staging area cannot be driven by an Autoreverser as well, as we would violate the "no Autoreversers Adjacent" rule.  Besides, the yard will be one PSX section, the rest of the trackage in areas B and C will be a second section; hence, the autoreversing needs to happen BEFORE the PSX inputs.  See the drawing!

So I was seeking a way to use a solid state device to reverse the staging area when I throw the crossovers.  I have now found a path forward, I think, though I'm waiting for a response from the designer for a couple of details.

I'm well aware of the evils of adjacent autoreversers, and too-short sections.

Thanks

Blair

On 2021-08-29 10:32, Jim Betz wrote:

Blair,

  OK, now that we have that sorted out ... the only other way I see a problem is
if you have two different reversing sections -and- have them on both sides of
the cross-over section.  Your cross-over section is very short (compared to the
length of even a short train.  IF you have both 'sides' of the cross-over section
being a reversing section - then you can have them fighting each other (it's
more of a timing thing) because the wheels will close the gaps on both sides of
the cross-over section and connect everything up as one long piece of track.
If you have two reversing sections connected to each other (even if they are
only connected by the train) - sooner or later (and usually sooner) they will
end up both trying to "correct the short".  The -best- result when that
happens is that the train will stutter its way thru until the double reversing
clears - this could even mean you'd see the train hesitate for every car in the
train as it hits one or the other or both of those cross-over gaps.
  Keep alives will keep the train moving forward and eventually it will clear
and run smoothly - but it's pretty ugly to watch happening.  Testing with
just an engine or any train short enough to fit entirely in the cross-over
section will not demonstrate this undesirable phenomenon.
  You -may- be able to deal with this problem by setting up the two
reversers to trip at a different timing (one longer than the other) but
even then it may not be the final solution.  Sometimes, what we
think needs to be a reversing section - actually doesn't need to be.
  In your case, you may be able to use a normal (non-reversing)
breaker for the "right side of the cross-overs" and a reversing one
for the left side (including the cross-overs?).  I haven't gone thru 
your track plan and worked out if this will work or not ... I'll let you
do that.
                                                                                                      - Jim

P.S. Yes, I've seen this happen on a large layout where the "non-clearing"
train was longer than the reversing section.  The trains stuttering their
way thru this situation were in hidden staging and so the layout owner
didn't realize why the stutter was happening.

P.P.S. I strongly recommend the use of PSX breakers and reversers and
          would not do any layout with any other brand.  Amongst other
          things they provide is the ability to set both the trip current and the
          trip sensitivity (aka timing) with jumpers on the board.


Re: DCC Bus reversing question

Jim Betz
 

Blair,

  OK, now that we have that sorted out ... the only other way I see a problem is
if you have two different reversing sections -and- have them on both sides of
the cross-over section.  Your cross-over section is very short (compared to the
length of even a short train.  IF you have both 'sides' of the cross-over section
being a reversing section - then you can have them fighting each other (it's
more of a timing thing) because the wheels will close the gaps on both sides of
the cross-over section and connect everything up as one long piece of track.
If you have two reversing sections connected to each other (even if they are
only connected by the train) - sooner or later (and usually sooner) they will
end up both trying to "correct the short".  The -best- result when that
happens is that the train will stutter its way thru until the double reversing
clears - this could even mean you'd see the train hesitate for every car in the
train as it hits one or the other or both of those cross-over gaps.
  Keep alives will keep the train moving forward and eventually it will clear
and run smoothly - but it's pretty ugly to watch happening.  Testing with
just an engine or any train short enough to fit entirely in the cross-over
section will not demonstrate this undesirable phenomenon.
  You -may- be able to deal with this problem by setting up the two
reversers to trip at a different timing (one longer than the other) but
even then it may not be the final solution.  Sometimes, what we
think needs to be a reversing section - actually doesn't need to be.
  In your case, you may be able to use a normal (non-reversing)
breaker for the "right side of the cross-overs" and a reversing one
for the left side (including the cross-overs?).  I haven't gone thru 
your track plan and worked out if this will work or not ... I'll let you
do that.
                                                                                                      - Jim

P.S. Yes, I've seen this happen on a large layout where the "non-clearing"
train was longer than the reversing section.  The trains stuttering their
way thru this situation were in hidden staging and so the layout owner
didn't realize why the stutter was happening.

P.P.S. I strongly recommend the use of PSX breakers and reversers and
          would not do any layout with any other brand.  Amongst other
          things they provide is the ability to set both the trip current and the
          trip sensitivity (aka timing) with jumpers on the board.


Can a Circuit Breaker be Shorted from the Input Side?

Rich
 

Let's say that a PSX circuit breaker is wired directly to an NCE booster along with a Digitrax AR1 which is independently wired to the same NCE booster 
such that the AR1 is not wired downstream of the PSX.  

If a dead short occurs in the reversing section powered from the AR1, the AR1 will continually trip as the NCE booster constantly resets trying to resolve the short. During these constant attempts by the booster to reset, is there any adverse effect on the PSX since clean power is not reaching the input side of the PSX? Or does the PSX remain unaffected by the dead short?

In such circumstances, could the short find its way into the output side of the PSX?

Thank you.

Rich


Re: DCC Bus reversing question

Blair
 

Yes Jim, I did.  But even more disturbing, I posted an incorrect drawing, then kept defending it as correct.  The gaps, of course, should have been on the staging side of the crossing, because there's no need to reverse the crossing.  What I am reversing are the two sidings, the build tracks, the staging yard ladders, and the staging yard, no more no less.  Electrically, the sidings and all non-staging track will be one sub-booster district, and the 12 staging tracks a second sub-booster district.

Note to self - when what others are saying doesn't make sense, make sure you've given them the right working info.  Sheesh!

Mea Culpa.  Apologies to you, Al, Steve, Don V, Wouter, and Don W. 'Nuff said.

Blair

On 8/20/2021 9:52 AM, Jim Betz wrote:
Blair,

  You missed my point "whenever any train is crossing over".


Re: Reverse Loop Issue on my DCC Layout

Tom Grassi
 

Hello All,

I now have the AR10 working with those two blocks.  It was miss wired.  Once I had the correct wiring setup it works great.

My only question about the WYE frog I think I have that figured out too.   I believe I only need to solder one side or the other of the frog   I will test that once I get my Tortoise installed tomorrow.

Thanks


--
Tom Grassi
trgrassijr@...


Re: DCC Bus reversing question

Jim Betz
 

Blair,

  You missed my point "whenever any train is crossing over".  Said
another way - set it up so that whenever the turnouts are set to
cross-over then another train "can't enter the cross-over section".
Obviously the intended cross over route has to be powered - I'm
saying that the 'other' route should have enough track that is dead
(when the cross over is set) that another train can't attempt to
enter the cross over section from either of the other two approaches.
And that it is going to need to be a considerable length of track in
order to cover the situation of an ABBA set of your longest locos.
I would use "3 or even 4 feet" of dead track to protect that short.
                                                                 - Jim


Reverse Loop Issue on my DCC Layout

Tom Grassi
 

Hello All,

I have added to my layout a Helix and upper level,   Still working on both of those.  But on my lower level to the helix is all new also.
For the original layout I have an oval  on the oval I added two new turnouts  one is for going to the Helix and the other is coming back from the helix.
They both connect to a Atlas code 83 WYE Turnout 560.  All my track is Atlas code 83.  After I added feeders to my helix and to the lower level all polarity was fine.  
Then I got to the WYE for the return leg and that was the opposite polarity  . Both turnouts and the WYE make like a triangle. So now I have a reversing Loop problem.

I purchased a NCE AR10  yes my layout runs all NCE equipment.  

I connected the feeders From Block 26 which is the return section of track and Block 28 which is the WYE 
As soo as the Engine front wheel hit the block 28 it trips the breaker and my entire Power Pro shuts down.
So I disconnected my track from the WYE back to the Helix and from the Main Layout so only Block 28 and Block 26 were active.   Still the same problem

did several tests I removed the NCE BD20's from the feeders made not difference.

I use a Black and Red feeder wire on my layout Red is the inside rail and the black in the outside which is the insulated rail for my block detection.

On the WYE all rails on all three side are insulated.  The section of track on Block 28 is insulated at the other end which is connected to a turnout on Block 9

Block 25 is the other side of the WYE also insulated at the other end which is connected to a turnout on Block 7

So all my track is insulated

So after speaking with NCE support today we came up with this test.  Install my Tortoise machine and power the frog which will set the correct polarity.

My question is on the Atlas WYE the FROG is metal and has to connectors one on each side of the frog.  
do I connect both side of the frog to the Tortoise?  
Does one side of the frog go to one relay on the tortoise  and the other side of the frog go to the other relay on the tortoise?

I read and see where the reverse loop has to be longer than you longest train.  Well this is like a straight away.  It is not a circle.

I can post my JMRI layout on the forum if you need to see what I am trying to do.

My upper layout has two reversing loops that I have not started yet so this exercise will be handy.


Any other ideas,


Thank you

Tom

  





--
Tom Grassi
trgrassijr@...


Re: component electrical specifications?

whmvd
 

Cutting power works well, right up until the day keep-alives are put into your locos. Maybe something to think about...?

Wouter


On Thu, 19 Aug 2021 at 14:58, Dave Emery via groups.io <deemery=icloud.com@groups.io> wrote:
What I want is for both the track on the drop-gate itself and the leads in either direction to be controlled by the position of the drop-gate. (i.e. when the gate is down, the leads have no power.) To do that, it seems I will need two switches, one on either end, or use a contact switch (e.g. a ‘pogo peg’) that passes power across the closed gate’s gap. 

        dave





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