Date   
Re: Buying DCC system

dcesharkman
 

For your stated needs, you will want to step up to the top tier systems like
the Digitrax Super Chief, the NCE Power Cab or the Lenz set 100 ( I think)



These are all fully featured units.



I use the Super Chief and am happy with it generally. I have run out of
capacity on it as my layout grew larger. I ran out of accessory address
space is the only thing that bothers me about it. But in reality, none of
the others would have a large enough address space either.



The best part about the top tier systems is that all you need as your layout
grows are power boosters.



David

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...] On
Behalf Of Erich Behm
Sent: Saturday, May 08, 2010 7:41 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Buying DCC system





Hello everyone, I have not purchased a DCC system yet, but have researched
the various systems. They claim to be able to do this or that, but I would
like to hear from actual users. What I'm hoping for is a system to control
everything from the throttle, (turnouts, lights, crossing guards, 7-8
engines + more later) basically everything on a layout. I would also like a
system that allows for expansion. Right now I'm the only operator but I
would also like the capability of 2 or more operators. I would love to hear
from anyone and their experience with the system they use, good or bad. Is a
starter set the best way to begin? I would like it to be somewhat user
friendly, but I'm sure if I need help this group will easily get me through
any problems. Thanks for any input.

Re: Buying DCC system

Richard Gagnon
 

--- On Sat, 5/8/10, David C. Eaton <dcesharkman@...> wrote:

From: David C. Eaton <dcesharkman@...>
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] Buying DCC system
To: WiringForDCC@...
Date: Saturday, May 8, 2010, 2:37 PM
For your stated needs, you will want
to step up to the top tier systems like
the Digitrax Super Chief, the NCE Power Cab or the Lenz set
100 ( I think)



These are all fully featured units.
-------------------------------------------------------------------

The NCE Power Cab is entry level but you can upgrade.
NCE also has the Power Pro 5 and 10 amp systems and radio capabilites.

Do a Google search for each company and you will find my possbilites. That will take guessing out of the loop.
Also, do a Google search for dcc systems reviews.

Rich

Re: Buying DCC system

dcesharkman
 

Thanks for correcting me. I get the NCE products mixed up.

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...] On
Behalf Of rg
Sent: Saturday, May 08, 2010 11:56 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] Buying DCC system





--- On Sat, 5/8/10, David C. Eaton <dcesharkman@
<mailto:dcesharkman%40yahoo.com> yahoo.com> wrote:

From: David C. Eaton <dcesharkman@ <mailto:dcesharkman%40yahoo.com>
yahoo.com>
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] Buying DCC system
To: WiringForDCC@ <mailto:WiringForDCC%40yahoogroups.com> yahoogroups.com
Date: Saturday, May 8, 2010, 2:37 PM
For your stated needs, you will want
to step up to the top tier systems like
the Digitrax Super Chief, the NCE Power Cab or the Lenz set
100 ( I think)



These are all fully featured units.
----------------------------------------------------------

The NCE Power Cab is entry level but you can upgrade.
NCE also has the Power Pro 5 and 10 amp systems and radio capabilites.

Do a Google search for each company and you will find my possbilites. That
will take guessing out of the loop.
Also, do a Google search for dcc systems reviews.

Rich

Buying DCC system

mgstewart <mgstewart@...>
 

Erich,

Others probably can provide trade-off comparisons among various systems for you to consider. This is simply one fella's story. I started with the 8-amp top-of-the-line Digitrax Empire set. There's enough troubleshooting involved in wiring a layout without compounding matters by freting in the back of the mind whether you've exceeded power limits, etc. I have an excellent dealer, CharlestonDigitalTrains.com, who councils me thru my conundrums and I've found that the Digitrax folks themselves are genuinely interested in my success and offer technical advice on call. I've mis-managed to burn out several decoders and other components; Digitrax has, in all instances, replaced them without charge.

From my experience, I extract two lessons: 1. Find a dealer that you "click" with. 2. If you don't pick Digitrax, make sure the system manufacturer/distributor offers strong (and generous) technical support.

Malcolm Stewart

Buying DCC system

mgstewart <mgstewart@...>
 

Eric,

Oops! I meant Super Chief rather than Empire Digitrax model.

Mea Culpa, Malcolm

Re: Buying DCC system

richhotrain <redking56@...>
 

I bought an NCE PH-Pro 5 amp system just over 5 years ago, and I am completely satisfied with it. It supports a 22'x42 P-shaped layout with a large number of sound equipped locos with no problem. I have not even had to consider a 5 amp booster.

My one regret is that I have not gone wireless, but an RB02 for $160 extra and an upgrade to each of my two throttles would complete the task. Right now, I am tethered to a series of UTP panels around the layout that work just fine.

I heartily endorse the NCE PH-Pro to you. I have never experienced even the slightest problem with the system.

Rich

Re: Buying DCC system

John <jc_oop@...>
 

My personal experience has been Terrible with NCE, I have had great support from Tony's Trains and Digitrax.

8am SuperChief with wireless.

John

Re: Buying DCC system

Bill Aulicino
 

John,
Could you be more specific???
Bill

----- Original Message -----
From: John
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Saturday, May 08, 2010 5:31 PM
Subject: Re: [WiringForDCC] Buying DCC system



My personal experience has been Terrible with NCE, I have had great support from Tony's Trains and Digitrax.

8am SuperChief with wireless.

John

Re: Buying DCC system

Richard Gagnon
 

You can always go over to the Yahoo NCE Group and take a look. NCE does respond to phone calls. Email takes a little longer.
Some people make the mistake of only going to the NCE Group which is NOT sponsored by NCE. The NCE Group like other Yahoo Groups are run by volunteers who like the product.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NCE-DCC/

Many DCC modelers make the mistake of believing a Yahoo Group is run by the company and become disgruntled when they cannot seem to get support for the product.
I have belonged to Yahoo DCC groups since they started and I see this quite often.

Rich




Inside every older person is a younger person wondering,
what happened?

Re: Buying DCC system

John <jc_oop@...>
 

I will be short,


Purchased an NCE PowerCab to start and I liked it and wanted to expand, Larry @ NCE suggested getting a Smart Booster and a Dumb Booster and that would handle my 11x22 layout fine. One problem the Smart Booster doesn't work with ANY reversing module(tried them all). Tony at Tony's Trains offered to take everything back in exchange for the 10amp PowerPro setup, which was fine. I called Larry @ NCE back to ask a question and he jumped all over me and said I was trying to Rip off NCE because with the price differnce of the exchange I would have got the Power Pro system for about $30.00 less than if I would have bought the ProCab in the first place. The conversation ended with Larry of NCE suggesting I purchase a Digitrax system. So I did.

Don't know what had got into him that day, I had delt with him before and all was fine. One thing for sure is I will NEVER OWN ANOTHER PIECE OF NCE.

They sold there starter system as upgradable and it was as long as you never had a reverse loop. They lied several times about the abilities of there system.

Tony's Trains was great, they helped me deal with the headaches of NCE and got me on the rite path with Digitrax.

Buy from Tony's Trains, buy Digitrax, even a Zepher system. The Zepher is a great starter and is very expandable.

John

Re: Turntable DCC reversing unit.

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Denny,
You could make another short isolated section of track wired with fixed polarity between the turntable and any presently adjacent A-R sections, forcing them to both conform to the same polarity as a loco passes between them. Will work nicely when a loco with all wheel pick-up like most diesels runs through.
DonV

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...] On Behalf Of Denny Anspach
Sent: Saturday, May 08, 2010 12:15 PM
To: DCC Wiring; LCList Construction; Jeff Aley
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Turntable DCC reversing unit.

Friends, I have reached a point where I am now wiring the turntable bridge in my engine terminal. My plan has been to wire through a very simple MRC reverser (Reverser "C"), a seemingly simply project. There are two lead tracks from the "outside", each of which is the functional one leg of a distinct wye (i.e. the turntable can function as the tail track of the wye, and rotating the turntable between the two legs replicates exactly the function of a tail track turnout).

Both legs of this wye arise from an important, but secondary section of the layout that is controlled by a PSX-AR reverser ("B"), which in turn butts in three places against a primary layout section that is also controlled through another PSX-AR "A". These two PSX-ARs work extremely well together inasmuch as one of the units ("B") has been programmed to respond a few milliseconds or so after the other (a valuable feature that IMHO makes these units really stand out).

Now, my rationale is that the MRC reverser will probably work OK against the legs of this "wye" powered by "B" as long as no other trains are at the same time crossing the other frontiers between "A"
and "B", i.e. B is faced with having to respond to reversing from "A"
and "C" simultaneously (or close to it). Most of the time, trains will NOT be crossing simultaneously (I am a single operator), but when friends are operating with me, a lot of trains are being operated simultaneously.

Now, should I just stop worrying and "see what happens"; ditch the MRC reverser for yet another PSX-AR programmed yet again for an additional delay (a relatively costly solution for the scope of the problem); or even rewire one of the legs (turntable track leads) so that it shares the circuit of "C", rather than "B"? What do you smart guys think?

FYI, my turntable bridge rails are hardwired through a hollow pivoting armature, rather than through the pit rails. I have adopted the approach of some of our Australian friends of simply leaving a dangling loop of wire under the pit, betting on the probability that the various moves of the turntable over its life clockwise/ counterclockwise will balance out. If one or the other eventually winds up the feeds (probably not in MY lifetime), the dangling wires are accessible, and they are connected with a plug easily undone.

Denny

Denny S. Anspach MD
Sacramento







------------------------------------

http://www.WiringForDCC.comYahoo! Groups Links

Re: Buying DCC system / OT

terryintexas7@...
 

Earl would love to see photos of your layout
Contact me off list at
_TerryinTexas7@... (mailto:TerryinTexas7@...)

In a message dated 5/9/2010 7:50:49 A.M. Central Daylight Time,
hacketet@... writes:

Earl Hackett

Modeling the C&O in 1952

Re: Buying DCC system

Earl Hackett <hacketet@...>
 

I have the EasyDCC system. The EasyDCC Yahoo group, like the others, is not
run by the company, but in the years I've belonged, anyone presenting a
problem to the group has had it resolved.



Earl Hackett

Modeling the C&O in 1952



************ Original Message *************



Many DCC modelers make the mistake of believing a Yahoo Group is run by the
company and become disgruntled when they cannot seem to get support for the
product.
I have belonged to Yahoo DCC groups since they started and I see this quite
often.

Buying

Erich Behm <erichbehm@...>
 

Thanks so much for all the input so far. I have been leaning towards Digitrax Super Chief based on what I have found on the internet so far, but like I said I wanted to hear from actual users first. If anyone else has comments I sure would like to see them before I make a final decision. Again, thank you for all the input.

Re: Buying

dcesharkman
 

I have been very happy with the Super Chief. It has been very reliable and
fully featured. There are a lot of third party products supporting it using
Loconet interfaces too. In my case, the layout ended up be bigger than it
could handle, but that is not a knock against it, it is just a limit that
very few folks would ever approach.



Now to add more fun for the party, add a Locobuffer USB from RR-Circuits and
download JMRI (free) and you are on your way to computer controlled layout
etc. JMRI includes DecoderPro, and that makes programming the decoders as
easy as it gets. It also includes PanelPro that allows you to control
sections of your layout.



Now you have the ability to conquer just about everything DCC related.



David

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...] On
Behalf Of Erich Behm
Sent: Sunday, May 09, 2010 7:48 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Buying





Thanks so much for all the input so far. I have been leaning towards
Digitrax Super Chief based on what I have found on the internet so far, but
like I said I wanted to hear from actual users first. If anyone else has
comments I sure would like to see them before I make a final decision.
Again, thank you for all the input.

Re: Buying DCC system

Richard Gagnon
 

Our club has the NCE Power Pro 5 amp system and we use MRC reverser's with no issues. We just have the convenience of knowing details about DCC. Obvious Man belongs to our club and tells use to do some Internet research rather than be led by the hand. It has worked for use for some years.

Rich




Inside every older person is a younger person wondering,
what happened?

Re: Buying DCC system

esimard
 

Hello, personally I am very happy with Digitrax but I don't want to start a yes but mine can do yada yada yada.

I think that you will find the all the major players will do what you want. None of them are perfect and with each you will have a bit of a learning curve. Once you are installed, up and running you will not be doing much with your command station. But you will be spending a lot of time with the throttles. I would investigate each systems choices here. Do you like the way it feels, can you easily operated with one hand, how easy to acquire a new engine etc? Some throttles can move turnouts and with an unexperienced user shutdown the layout, do you really want this? Other throttles are of the utility type and can only run a train and do the necessary functions. Most systems allow mixing of the two throttle types. At first I thought moving turnouts would be important, but by the time you find the TO's address, change the throttle to switch mode, close/throw the TO, switch back to running mode, I don't use it. Facia switches were faster and easier. Some operators have enormous thumbs and keep hitting the power on/off switch - they only get utility throttles that don't have this ability.
Just my 2 cents.
_Ernie

Re: Buying

gnrybob <Robmorrison@...>
 

Erich,
I have been a very happy Lenz system owner/user since 1993 when I bought the first Lenz system. There have been several upgrades over the years but all the components have never given any trouble, except one cable which apparently had a wire break. Replacement was free. Support from the US Lenz agency has been excellent, specifically by Debbie Ames who runs it. She is very knowledgeable and pleasant to work with. If you have any questions, feel free to email me.
Rob Morrison

--- In WiringForDCC@..., Erich Behm <erichbehm@...> wrote:

Thanks so much for all the input so far. I have been leaning towards Digitrax Super Chief based on what I have found on the internet so far, but like I said I wanted to hear from actual users first. If anyone else has comments I sure would like to see them before I make a final decision. Again, thank you for all the input.

Re: Buying

Harvey L. McRae
 

I have been using the Digitrax "Empire Builder" for 12 years or more.. I have the DB150 - 5 amp as my main power supply, and a DB 200 - 8 amp as a booster. I'm know now that for my current layout the DB 150 would be ample for all my requirements.

The Digitrax system has so many options, that I have just barely scratched the surface, with what I have been doing. Secondly. The DIGITRAX people have been wonderful to work with.. Also I deal with Bill Dixon at Central Hobbies in Vancouver, British Columbia and Bill is a walking Digitrax knowledge box..

I do have one caution....If you purchase your equipment from XYZ supplier in Any Nowhere land, because you were able to save $10, $50, or $100. bucks, don't expect your local dealer to supply you with all his knowledge at the drop of a hat.. Support the dealer that you know will provide the time and expertise to get you back on track when you are having trouble.


Harvey L. McRae
838 McKenzie Rd.,
Kelowna, B.C. V1X2B3

Web: www.harriscreekcentral.webs.com

----- Original Message -----
From: Erich Behm
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Sunday, May 09, 2010 7:47 AM
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Buying



Thanks so much for all the input so far. I have been leaning towards Digitrax Super Chief based on what I have found on the internet so far, but like I said I wanted to hear from actual users first. If anyone else has comments I sure would like to see them before I make a final decision. Again, thank you for all the input.

DCC Reversers

emrldsky
 

Hi I am somewhat confused about exactly how the DCC reversers work and how the entire layout is affected. For example, the layout is a main line with a parallel passing siding; there is a reversing loop at each end of the main line. There are 4 power blocks; the main line, the siding, reversing loop 1 and reversing loop 2. All block polarity switches are set to position A. On DC, after the train enters reversing loop 1, the polarity control switch for the main line block has to be thrown to position B so that the train will continue on without causing a short. Likewise, if the train is to use the siding, that switch must also be thrown to B, and the switch must be thrown to B for reversing loop 2 just as the train is to enter the it. Then the whole sequence must be repeated just before the train exits the reversing loop 2. And so it goes every time the train changes direction via the reversing loops. That works fine for one train. So, how complex does it get for two trains? or Three, or more. The number of power blocks grow along with the number of trains that are to be run at once.
Now comes DCC and the auto reverser. Does the entire layout, assuming it is the same one, get its "polarity" switched back and forth? What happens for multiple trains?