Date   
Re: DC Power Supply Question

Mark Gurries
 

The biggest problem with using such a high current power supply is a serious Fire hazard.  There is no forgivness with small wiring or improper wiring.

You need to a slow blow fuse or a circuit breaker of about 5Amps right at the output of the power supply.  That way any wiring problems will just pop the fuse or circuit breaker.

BTW: The DC output voltage is to low for the PowerPro to use anyway.   You will not get full track voltage.  It practice it takes about 19VDC to get the correct fully regulated output voltage at 5amps at the track terminals.



On Feb 19, 2016, at 3:50 AM, Jerry Breon jbreon@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote:

Some time ago I acquired a Pyramid PS-52KX Regulated Power Supply redundant from a professional project and am considering using it to power the accessories (lighting, Tortoise stall motors, etc.) on my under-construction HO scale NCE PowerPro-controlled layout. It is not my intent to utilize this unit to power any components of the NCE system, just the layout accessories.
 
Because the Pyramid unit furnishes 12-15 VDC at 52 AMPS, my specific question is what precautions should I take to ensure the unit can be safely used in a model railroad layout environment?
 
Thanks,
Jerry Breon
Mooresville, NC

Best Regards,

Mark Gurries
Electrical Engineer
DCC Website & NMRA DCC Clinics: www.markgurries.com



Re: DC Power Supply Question

Rich <regan@...>
 

Hello:
    That type (and brand) was developed more for Ham radio stations. A 52-amp supply can power a 200-watt output radio. I use a 30-amp supply for my 100-watt Yaesu and a few accessories. This particular power supply gets mixed reviews on the Ham Radio forums (because I think some Ops overdrive them and burn them up). This leads to one consensus: keep the total output to 40 amps or below. As to other ramifications using such a heavy-duty power supply in a model railroad situation: I’ll leave that to the electrical/electronics folks.
Rich, KA2VCW
Rochester, NY

On Feb 19, 2016, at 6:50 AM, Jerry Breon jbreon@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote



Some time ago I acquired a Pyramid PS-52KX Regulated Power Supply redundant from a professional project and am considering using it to power the accessories (lighting, Tortoise stall motors, etc.) on my under-construction HO scale NCE PowerPro-controlled layout. It is not my intent to utilize this unit to power any components of the NCE system, just the layout accessories.
 
Because the Pyramid unit furnishes 12-15 VDC at 52 AMPS, my specific question is what precautions should I take to ensure the unit can be safely used in a model railroad layout environment?
 
Thanks,
Jerry Breon
Mooresville, NC


Re: DC Power Supply Question

Glenn
 

I agree with Don, divide your output into several circuits and fuse them. Or connect them through voltage regulators, LM7815, LM7812, and LM7805 as needed. The last two digits indicate the output voltage. These voltage regulators will shut down at about 1 amp. You can find some regulators with a higher output.

 

There is also the LM317 series variable voltage regulator that can go down to 1.5V if you need that low of a voltage.

 

Glenn

 

 

 

 


From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Friday, February 19, 2016 09:37
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] DC Power Supply Question

 




Jerry,

Put lots of 2-3 amp branch circuit fusing close to the output connections of the supply so you can safely wire your accessory loads with 18-22 AWG. Make sure you also fuse or CB the input power connections to this supply at less than 8-10 amps as an internal component failure might turn the 120V supply cord into a fire hazard.

DonV

 

From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Friday, February 19, 2016 5:50 AM
To: NCE-DCC ; WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] DC Power Supply Question

 



Some time ago I acquired a Pyramid PS-52KX Regulated Power Supply redundant from a professional project and am considering using it to power the accessories (lighting, Tortoise stall motors, etc.) on my under-construction HO scale NCE PowerPro-controlled layout. It is not my intent to utilize this unit to power any components of the NCE system, just the layout accessories.
 
Because the Pyramid unit furnishes 12-15 VDC at 52 AMPS, my specific question is what precautions should I take to ensure the unit can be safely used in a model railroad layout environment?
 
Thanks,
Jerry Breon
Mooresville, NC



 


Re: DC Power Supply Question

Jerry Breon
 

I appreciate everyone's replies to my question and will certainly follow the sound advice to provide 5A fuse protection at the power supply's output. As an aside, power to all of my layout's equipment is energized by an illuminated (when ON) wall switch at the room's exit door as an added precaution.
Jerry
 

From: jbreon@...
To: nce-dcc@...; wiringfordcc@...
Subject: DC Power Supply Question
Date: Fri, 19 Feb 2016 06:50:23 -0500

Some time ago I acquired a Pyramid PS-52KX Regulated Power Supply redundant from a professional project and am considering using it to power the accessories (lighting, Tortoise stall motors, etc.) on my under-construction HO scale NCE PowerPro-controlled layout. It is not my intent to utilize this unit to power any components of the NCE system, just the layout accessories.
 
Because the Pyramid unit furnishes 12-15 VDC at 52 AMPS, my specific question is what precautions should I take to ensure the unit can be safely used in a model railroad layout environment?
 
Thanks,
Jerry Breon
Mooresville, NC

Small Enclosed Trailer

Arthur F. Rounds <arounds@...>
 

Fellow Model Railroader,

Due to health issues, I am no longer able to pull a trailer. I am forwarding a description of the trailer that I had custom made to transport my multiple modules to model train shows. I towed the trailer from Mont Vernon, NH to Springfield MA and back once. This was its total use. I have enclosed two attachments, one to view on your computer, and one of print quality for your clubhouse.


Arthur F. Rounds


Wiring for A Wye

mikedolan34
 

I belong to a Free-Mo Modular group and have a question concerning Wye wiring.
The nature of our group is such that each setup is different from the previous. I have built a Wye for use in the group and wired as it is, requires placement the same at each set up.
I would like to rewire this so that each leg of the wye could be swapped for the purpose of the reversing polarity. I would like to control each leg of the wye so that I could have Leg A as the reversing section at a set up but have Leg C as the reversing section at the next set up.
I've looked at SPST or DPDT toggles or maybe a 3 way Guitar type switch is required. But I'm confused.
Appreciate any feedback.
Mike Dolan
(New Member)


Re: Wiring for A Wye

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Mike
You can use a DPDT toggle switch to select which leg of the wye will be a reversing leg at setup time. Insulate both rails of each leg. Wire the rails of each leg to the 'throw' terminals of a separate DPDT toggle switch. Wire one end of each toggle switch to an AR unit. Wire the other side is the switch to fixed DCC. Flip the toggles to suit the setup. An alternate setup would be to let both legs be of fixed polarity and make the third switch of the wye determine the polarity of the turnout and tracks beyond according to the direction of the throw bar.
DonV

On Feb 21, 2016, at 10:00 PM, pkmjd@...<mailto:pkmjd@...> [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...<mailto:WiringForDCC@...>> wrote:



I belong to a Free-Mo Modular group and have a question concerning Wye wiring.
The nature of our group is such that each setup is different from the previous. I have built a Wye for use in the group and wired as it is, requires placement the same at each set up.
I would like to rewire this so that each leg of the wye could be swapped for the purpose of the reversing polarity. I would like to control each leg of the wye so that I could have Leg A as the reversing section at a set up but have Leg C as the reversing section at the next set up.
I've looked at SPST or DPDT toggles or maybe a 3 way Guitar type switch is required. But I'm confused.
Appreciate any feedback.
Mike Dolan
(New Member)

Re: Wiring for A Wye

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Mike,
Using a short leg of track for DCC auto-reversing is problematic. It would help if you could send a sketch of possible ways you envision how your module with the wye would be used. Post them in our files or photo section or send direct to me by email.
Be sure to check out other options at http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track_2.htm#a45.
DonV

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Sunday, February 21, 2016 10:19 PM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: Re: [WiringForDCC] Wiring for A Wye

Mike
You can use a DPDT toggle switch to select which leg of the wye will be a reversing leg at setup time. Insulate both rails of each leg. Wire the rails of each leg to the 'throw' terminals of a separate DPDT toggle switch. Wire one end of each toggle switch to an AR unit. Wire the other side is the switch to fixed DCC. Flip the toggles to suit the setup. An alternate setup would be to let both legs be of fixed polarity and make the third switch of the wye determine the polarity of the turnout and tracks beyond according to the direction of the throw bar.
DonV
On Feb 21, 2016, at 10:00 PM, pkmjd@...<mailto:pkmjd@...> [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...<mailto:WiringForDCC@...>> wrote:



I belong to a Free-Mo Modular group and have a question concerning Wye wiring.
The nature of our group is such that each setup is different from the previous. I have built a Wye for use in the group and wired as it is, requires placement the same at each set up.
I would like to rewire this so that each leg of the wye could be swapped for the purpose of the reversing polarity. I would like to control each leg of the wye so that I could have Leg A as the reversing section at a set up but have Leg C as the reversing section at the next set up.
I've looked at SPST or DPDT toggles or maybe a 3 way Guitar type switch is required. But I'm confused.
Appreciate any feedback.
Mike Dolan
(New Member)






------------------------------------
Posted by: "Vollrath, Don" <DVollrath@...>
------------------------------------

http://www.WiringForDCC.com
------------------------------------

Yahoo Groups Links

Re: Wiring for A Wye

mikedolan34
 

Thanks Don. 
I was thinking that would be the best. Appreciate the quick response. 
Mike Dolan


On Feb 21, 2016, at 11:18 PM, 'Vollrath, Don' dvollrath@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote:

 

Mike
You can use a DPDT toggle switch to select which leg of the wye will be a reversing leg at setup time. Insulate both rails of each leg. Wire the rails of each leg to the 'throw' terminals of a separate DPDT toggle switch. Wire one end of each toggle switch to an AR unit. Wire the other side is the switch to fixed DCC. Flip the toggles to suit the setup. An alternate setup would be to let both legs be of fixed polarity and make the third switch of the wye determine the polarity of the turnout and tracks beyond according to the direction of the throw bar.
DonV


On Feb 21, 2016, at 10:00 PM, pkmjd@...<mailto:pkmjd@...> [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...<mailto:WiringForDCC@...>> wrote:

I belong to a Free-Mo Modular group and have a question concerning Wye wiring.
The nature of our group is such that each setup is different from the previous. I have built a Wye for use in the group and wired as it is, requires placement the same at each set up.
I would like to rewire this so that each leg of the wye could be swapped for the purpose of the reversing polarity. I would like to control each leg of the wye so that I could have Leg A as the reversing section at a set up but have Leg C as the reversing section at the next set up.
I've looked at SPST or DPDT toggles or maybe a 3 way Guitar type switch is required. But I'm confused.
Appreciate any feedback.
Mike Dolan
(New Member)

using computer powerpack for accessory power

tradertoolkit@...
 

Hello all,


I am a newcomer to both DCC and this forum having had a large LGB indoor layout running in analog for many years.


I am converting the whole layout to DCC, well not converting. Re-doing from scratch. My intent was to let the Zimo command station control the track power and to have a separate power panel from a 950 Watt Kentek ATX computer power supply. I have built one before but I've read that for DCC no earth ground can be connected. I see why that is for the command station power, does this apply to power for accessories as well? ( signals, turnouts, lights etc)


One further question, my layout is indoors so the temperature remains fairly constant. Given that, is it still recommended to have every piece of track soldered to something? I had a thought to use the LGB track power terminals every 5-6 ft rather than solder the jumpers, although not prototype, is this a viable option?


Thank you for all the great knowledge I've read so far on this forum.

Re: using computer powerpack for accessory power

Mark Gurries
 

On Feb 22, 2016, at 2:19 PM, tradertoolkit@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote:

Hello all,

I am a newcomer to both DCC and this forum having had a large LGB indoor layout running in analog for many years.

I am converting the whole layout to DCC, well not converting. Re-doing from scratch. My intent was to let the Zimo command station control the track power and to have a separate power panel from a 950 Watt Kentek ATX computer power supply. I have built one before but I've read that for DCC no earth ground can be connected. I see why that is for the command station power, does this apply to power for accessories as well? ( signals, turnouts, lights etc)
If the accessories are not electrically connected in any way to the DCC system, there is no problem. Each INDEPENDENT electrical system can have it own earth ground. It just cannot be shared or connected to with any other layout electrical system that has it own Earth Ground.

ATX power supplies may have minimum current you must draw from them on the main output in order for them to work properly as in meet full specifications for all of the auxiliary outputs. But I suspect you know that if you built one before.

One further question, my layout is indoors so the temperature remains fairly constant.
It is not just temperature, which helps some, but humidity too. Wood will absorb or release the moisture from humidity based on the environment as required with its goal of reaching an equilibrium with the environment. It can enters and exit from the exposed end grain of the cut wood. Plywood is the most stable. All this translates to the wood moving under the track. One good idea is to allows the wood to season to the environment of the room in spring or fall where the humidity is nominal and then paint the wood to seal it from the humidity. With the humidity controlled at the wood level and a temperature controlled room, you will be able to lay track at your leisure.

Given that, is it still recommended to have every piece of track soldered to something?
The answer comes down to the question relating to what type of rail joiners are you using. if you have simple slide on rail joiners, the rails will be allowed to move inside them. Movement allows oxidation. Oxidation allows electrical resistance to build up. Worse case the connection can fail electrically. The point is do not rely on the common slip on rail joiner for electrical conductions. Only rely on them for mechanical alignment of the rails.

Soldering the real joiners does work but at some point there will be a break in the solder joints due to the stress buildup of any wood movement. This is the argument about making sure at a MINIMUM there is no more than 2 rail joiner between track feeders of a given rail. The assumption here is it allow one rail joiner to fail allowing the other one to pick up the load. But is not foolproof. It you want 100% non failure, you need to solder a track feeder to every monolithic piece of rail such that is does not matter what the rail joiners do or not do electrically.

Now in Theory if you had screw based rail joiners where the screws after fighting are locked some how, then you can get away with less track feeders because you have a electrically reliable rail joiner. However I am not an expert in in LGB or G scale in terms of how in practice screw terminals work. There may be others on this list that know better than I what work and what does not due to experience.

I had a thought to use the LGB track power terminals every 5-6 ft rather than solder the jumpers, although not prototype, is this a viable option?
Yes, You will have to make sure the screw does not come loose or you as unreliable as regular rail joiner. Locktight?

Best Regards,

Mark Gurries
Electrical Engineer
DCC Website & NMRA DCC Clinics: www.markgurries.com

Re: using computer powerpack for accessory power

tradertoolkit@...
 

Thanks Mark

So to be clear, if I intend on having the accessories controlled with DCC accessory decoders, then it CANNOT share the earth ground.

Options for auto-reverser ...

Richard Main
 

Hi all,

I am building a small HO switching layout, and some crossings and double-slips will require an auto-reverser (I will be using powered frogs). Some friends have recommended the Digitrax AR-1 or PM-42 to auto-set the polarity of the frogs.

What other options are there apart from Digitrax? (I'm not against Digitrax as such, just looking at what's around!)

Kind regards,

Richard Main
Melbourne, Australia

Re: Options for auto-reverser ...

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Richard, look for Frog Juicer for frogs and the PSXAR for other auto reverser duties.

DonV

On Feb 23, 2016, at 5:58 AM, Richard Main richard@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote:

Hi all,

I am building a small HO switching layout, and some crossings and
double-slips will require an auto-reverser (I will be using powered
frogs). Some friends have recommended the Digitrax AR-1 or PM-42 to
auto-set the polarity of the frogs.

What other options are there apart from Digitrax? (I'm not against
Digitrax as such, just looking at what's around!)

Kind regards,

Richard Main
Melbourne, Australia



------------------------------------
Posted by: Richard Main <richard@...>
------------------------------------

http://www.WiringForDCC.com
------------------------------------

Yahoo Groups Links


Re: Options for auto-reverser ...

redking56@...
 

For years, I was a big fan of the Digitrax AR-1, inexpensive and reliable. But, with its mechanical relay, it is just too slow to work well in the digital age. When I created power districts on my layout, and protected each district with a PSX circuit breaker, conflicts occurred with the AR-1 units. The solid state PSX circuit breakers were tripping faster than the AR-1s could reset. So, I sold off my AR-1 units and replaced them with PSX-AR units. No more conflicts.

Rich

Feeds for detection blocks

Steven Grzegorzewski
 

I will be using a BDL168 detector and will have a PM42 feeding into it from the booster.  The zone common will be rail A (red) coming out of the BDL168, and the detection common will be the rail B (black) coming out of the BDL168 also.  My question pertains to long blocks (6 to 8 ft).  I will likely need a second connection to the zone common (red).  Must I make the second connection to the long block from the same output of the BDL168 feed or can I connect it to the rail A bus that comes out of the PM42?  Additionally, for the blocks connected to the BDL168, do all the detector commons also need to be tied to the detector bus common (black) coming from the BDL168 or can they be also commented to the rail B bus feed from the PM42 for that power district?

Re: Feeds for detection blocks

Mark Gurries
 

On Feb 26, 2016, at 12:48 PM, sgrzegorzewski@... [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...> wrote:

I will be using a BDL168 detector and will have a PM42 feeding into it from the booster.  The zone common will be rail A (red) coming out of the BDL168, and the detection common will be the rail B (black) coming out of the BDL168 also.  My question pertains to long blocks (6 to 8 ft).  

Definition of block length, long or short, of a given block is relative to the typical train length your running.

Looking at the BDL168 manual dated 2013 that names of the wires and the color do not match.  We need to work from a common drawing.  I am using the 2013 version of the BDL168 manual as listed on the Digitrax Website.

i will attempt to answer you question based on Figure 1 and using the wire colors shown.

I will likely need a second connection to the zone common (red).  

With the exception of the PS14 connection, all wires running long distances to or from a PM42 or BDL168 that carry track power must be heavy gauge.  The problem people encounter is that large gauge wires do not fit on the connectors.  A common solution to deal with the wire gauge problem is to mount a terminal block next to the BDL-168.   The terminal block makes it easy to transition between different gauge wires.  You can actually pre-build the BDL168 on a piece of plywood along with the terminal block and pre-wire the BDL-168 to the terminal block with small gauge wire.  That way when you install it, all you doing is working with the large gauge wires.

Looking at the BDL168 manual dated 2013, the:

1)  red wire is the “Detection Common” wire.  This heavy gauge wire should be run under the track.  You should have multiple smaller gauge track feeders connecting the heavy gauge detection common to the rail that is powered by the same given booster.  It should not be a single connection.

2) gray/black wire is a “Zone Common” wire which is also supposed to be a heavy gauge wire.   When the heavy gauge zone common wire reaches the BDL-168, it can be broken up into 4 very short smaller gauge wires such that each Zone input, A,B,C and D will each have a connection with a wire that fits the connector.

3) blue wires are the “Detection Section" wires.  The long run from the BDL168 to the track again needs to be heavy gauge since they will carry the train current.   Since heavy gauge wire cannot be directly connected to the terminals of the BDL-168, again you will have to use a short length of smaller gauge wire to complete the connection between the heavy wire and the BDL-168.  For each heavy gauge detection section wire you should have multiple smaller gauge track feeders connecting it to the sections of physical rail that represent the detection section.  It should not be a single connection.

Must I make the second connection to the long block from the same output of the BDL168 feed or can I connect it to the rail A bus that comes out of the PM42? 

PM42 must be placed after the booster but BEFORE the BDL168.    The same concept of having a terminal strip to adapt wire gauge local to the PM42 to deal with the change in wire gauge also applies.

GRAY/BLACK WIRE:  You need to run the Zone common Gray wire from the booster to the PM42 RAIL A input connection.  Then from the Track A output, run the Gray wire out to BDL168 Zone connections A, B, C and D.  This assume you want all 16 detections zone powered by the same booster.

RED WIRE:  You need to run the Detection common red wire from the booster to the PM42 RAIL B input connection.  Then from the Track B output, run the red wire out to the rail to complete the detection common connection.

Best Regards,

Mark Gurries
Electrical Engineer
DCC Website & NMRA DCC Clinics: www.markgurries.com



Remote RRamp-like Indicators

Gregory Latiak
 

When I built the control panel for my layout I included an RRamp meter in-line to monitor power draw on the track. Due to an influx of sound locos I have been forced to add an additional booster and partition the track feeds. I would love to have a meter on both booster supplies -- but have no space to add a second RRamp circuit board. And I have considered but rejected ideas to switch the meter between the boosters as this would cause interruptions in track power that I would prefer to avoid.


Is there anything out there that I could use to provide equivalent power and voltage metrics where the display could be some distance from the circuitry? I would prefer to not scratch-build but would if necessary. (I did ask the RRamp people but they suggested switching it...).


I have also considered unsoldering the display and moving it to the end of a ribbon cable. Not sure I am feeling that bold, but...


Any thoughts or suggestions?


Thanks,


Greg Latiak

Re: Remote RRamp-like Indicators

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Greg,

If you want to permanently monitor booster output ampere demand, why not simply add one at each booster? See http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track.htm#a4 . Inexpensive multimeters with a digital DC ammeter readout are available at Harbor Freight and other discount suppliers.  

DonV

 

From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Wednesday, March 09, 2016 7:45 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Remote RRamp-like Indicators

 




When I built the control panel for my layout I included an RRamp meter in-line to monitor power draw on the track. Due to an influx of sound locos I have been forced to add an additional booster and partition the track feeds. I would love to have a meter on both booster supplies -- but have no space to add a second RRamp circuit board. And I have considered but rejected ideas to switch the meter between the boosters as this would cause interruptions in track power that I would prefer to avoid.

 

Is there anything out there that I could use to provide equivalent power and voltage metrics where the display could be some distance from the circuitry? I would prefer to not scratch-build but would if necessary. (I did ask the RRamp people but they suggested switching it...).

 

I have also considered unsoldering the display and moving it to the end of a ribbon cable. Not sure I am feeling that bold, but...

 

Any thoughts or suggestions?

 

Thanks,

 

Greg Latiak




Re: Remote RRamp-like Indicators

Gregory Latiak
 

Well, I would except that the space available is barely larger than a single RRamp circuit board. I guess I don't really understand the issue of correctly measuring booster output -- I would speculate (and please correct me) that current flow should be straight forward, but voltage measurement for the DCC waveform is probably 'interesting'. I have a cased RRamp that I use for spot checking the track, so I probably don't really need running voltage from the booster or the idiot lights. If it ain't DCC coming from the booster than I probably have other issues.

Anyhow, if a regular digital amp meter will provide a reasonable value then I am probably ok with that.

greg