Date   

Re: PECO c55 turnouts are *not* easily modified to work with DCC!

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

All:

Thanks to Kay Sievert for providing photos of the code 55 Peco
Electrofrog turnouts and bringing the problem to my attention. I have
updated the website to show that the code 55 Electrofrogs are
different than the larger size Electrofrogs. Peco appears to have
quite a variation in their turnouts. Short of me buying one of every
turnout they make, I have to rely on you to bring differences to my
attention. If you have a Peco turnout that does not fit with what I
have shown in the website, please let me know. We will take the
conversation off the forum and update the page. Corrections will then
be announced here on the forum.

Allan


DCC Wiring

Alex McConnell <wood.gift@...>
 

I am trying to locate the wire colour codes for wiring DCC trackwork.


Re: DCC Wiring

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

There are no standard colors for wiring your trackwork. I suggest
black and white only because this is common household wire that is
inexpensive and available at your favorite home improvement store.

You might want to check my website where I talk a little about wire
color. The discussion on wire color begins at:
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track.htm#a11


Late Starting

stephenaslancaster <stephenlancaster@...>
 

Hello

I have a Digitrax dz123 wired to a can motor installed on
a MDC Shay. When I apply throttle the is a time delay before the
engine begins to move. I can see that it is going from 0volts to
what ever speed it takes to finally get moving. My question is,
can the dead space be programed out? Is there a reason for this
behavior? Thanks for any help. Stephen


accessory decoders to drive relays

John Coker
 

Hello folks! I am a new member of this group (and newly entering
model railroading and working my way through all the new stuff
available through DCC).

I was browsing the reviews of accessory decoders on Tony's Train
Exchange and they all seem to be intended for short-term loads. I.e.,
they expect to be off except for brief periods when they are on to
operate a switch machine. Does anyone know if any can be used in to
drive a relay coil to implement an electronic toggle switch? For this
use, I would like need them to continuously power the relay when
"thrown", not just for a short period of time.

FYI, I want to drive a DPDT relay to switch one stub on my layout to
the programming outputs for mobile decoder programming. Since
everything else is to be computer controlled, I would like to use an
accessory decoder and control this state from the computer as well.
(Ideally this would be interlocked with the switch leading to this
stub so that the switch could not be thrown for the stub while in
programming mode.)

John


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Yes. Simply use an accessory decoder designed to handle a Tortoise stall type switch motor. Thes are designed to provide a continuous rather than a pulse output. You can attach the relay to one of the 'Tortoise' outputs, without an actual tortoise motor being present. Put a diode in series with a 12Vdc relay coil so that it operates in only one 'direction' of output power. be sure to also use a 'catch' diode across the relay coil.

DonV

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@...
[mailto:WiringForDCC@...]On Behalf Of John Coker
Sent: Monday, August 15, 2005 2:21 PM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] accessory decoders to drive relays


Hello folks! I am a new member of this group (and newly entering
model railroading and working my way through all the new stuff
available through DCC).

I was browsing the reviews of accessory decoders on Tony's Train
Exchange and they all seem to be intended for short-term loads. I.e.,
they expect to be off except for brief periods when they are on to
operate a switch machine. Does anyone know if any can be used in to
drive a relay coil to implement an electronic toggle switch? For this
use, I would like need them to continuously power the relay when
"thrown", not just for a short period of time.

FYI, I want to drive a DPDT relay to switch one stub on my layout to
the programming outputs for mobile decoder programming. Since
everything else is to be computer controlled, I would like to use an
accessory decoder and control this state from the computer as well.
(Ideally this would be interlocked with the switch leading to this
stub so that the switch could not be thrown for the stub while in
programming mode.)

John






http://www.WiringForDCC.com
Yahoo! Groups Links


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

I wanted to add to Don's advice about using accessory decoders for
stall type motors. That is true. However, you can't use just any
relay. Check the maximum current the decoder can put out for a stall
type motor. Then make sure you relay does not require more than that.

If there is a relay you want to use, you may have to shop around for a
stall type motor accessory decoder that can put out as much current as
you need. I know that some of the accessory decoders can only put out
40mA or less. Some relays require about 160mA.

There is also a type of relay called a "high sensitivity relay."
These relays are specially designed to work with computer type
equipment and draw much less than the typical relay. They cost a
little more than the typical relay, but not too much.

Be careful. I'm talking about the coil sensitivity rating of the
relay NOT the current carrying capability of the relay CONTACTS. Your
coil sensitivity rating should be about 160mA or less (especially for
a high sensitivity relay) whereas the CONTACT rating should be about
5A.


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

John Coker
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "Vollrath, Don"
<dvollrath@m...> wrote:
Yes. Simply use an accessory decoder designed to handle a
Tortoise stall type switch motor. Thes are designed to provide a
continuous rather than a pulse output. You can attach the relay to
one of the 'Tortoise' outputs, without an actual tortoise motor
being present. Put a diode in series with a 12Vdc relay coil so
that it operates in only one 'direction' of output power. be sure
to also use a 'catch' diode across the relay coil.

Thanks for the info.

Reading between the lines in your reply, it sounds like the Tortoise
expects continuous DC input, with the polarity varying to control
the switch position. I assume that means that the outputs for these
type of switch machines are always at 12VDC and ground, with
alternate polarites when the switch is thrown and clear. Is that
correct?

Can you please elaborate on the function of the "catch" diode and
the appropriate types of diodes to use for an electronics neophyte?

John


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

John Coker
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "wirefordcc"
<wire4dcc_admin@c...> wrote:
I wanted to add to Don's advice about using accessory decoders for
stall type motors. That is true. However, you can't use just any
relay.
Thanks for the info.

I just picked up a simple PCB mount relay from Radio Shack (part #275-
249A) which seems to be perfect. It has a 12V 60mA coil and a 5A
contact rating.

John


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

John Coker
 

After looking again at the output capability of the various stationary
decoders, 160mA seems high. I found this "low signal" relay from
Mouser which seems more appropriate:
http://www.mouser.com/catalog/623/1188.pdf

The Omron G5A-234P-DC12 only draws 16.7mA at 12VDC. (They have an
even lower signal one that draws 12.5mA, the "high sensitivity" version.)

These relays should be able to be driven by any stationary decoder,
including the popular NCE Switch-It.

Now, if someone can suggest appropriate diodes to be used with this
relay, I'll be set.

John


Re: accessory decoders to drive relays

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Well, OK. Pick any signal diode - get 2. 50 V or greater, 100ma or greater. Its just not critical. 1N400x, 1N914, 1N4148, whatever you can find in your junk-box or at Radio Shack.
The cathode end of each diode is marked with a band. the other end is the anode.

Connect them cathode to cathode and connect those to one side of the relay coil. (this will be the + end).
Connect the anode of the first diode (the catch diode) to the other side of the relay coil and to the sw machine driver (this will be the - end).
Connect the anode of the second diode to the other output terminal of the sw machine driver.

The relay should pick up when the sw machine driver is set for one direction and not pick up when set for the other direction. You can test it w/ a 9V battery.

And Yes...Find a sensitive relay that activates with a minimum of coil ma. Look for one with more than 400 ohms of resistance (<30 ma) if possible. The Omron G5A-234-P-DC12 w/ 720 ohm coil DPDT will work but has only a 1 amp contact rating. See also Omron G6B-2214P-US-DC12, DPST, 5 amps, 480 ohm (25ma) coil, ~$5 in the DigiKey catalog.

DonV

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@...
[mailto:WiringForDCC@...]On Behalf Of John Coker
Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2005 2:01 PM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: accessory decoders to drive relays


After looking again at the output capability of the various stationary
decoders, 160mA seems high. I found this "low signal" relay from
Mouser which seems more appropriate:
http://www.mouser.com/catalog/623/1188.pdf

The Omron G5A-234P-DC12 only draws 16.7mA at 12VDC. (They have an
even lower signal one that draws 12.5mA, the "high sensitivity" version.)

These relays should be able to be driven by any stationary decoder,
including the popular NCE Switch-It.

Now, if someone can suggest appropriate diodes to be used with this
relay, I'll be set.

John





http://www.WiringForDCC.com
Yahoo! Groups Links


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

John Coker
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "mmogen2004" <n_meister@m...> wrote:
Allan,

Mike Mogensen here perplexed as usual in Indy.

Was wondering if you or any member has had first hand experience
implementing transponding/detection using BDL162 and RX4.
Hi Allan. I'm also interested in getting this to work, but am not
quite as far along as you are. I did notice that DigiTrax decoders
seem to come factory set with transponding turned off. (I'm not sure
if that's what you meant by CV 62 since I'm using DecoderPro.)

I've also heard that some sound-equipped locos break transponding
(notably QSI decoders). I have a couple of these and was planning to
add DigiTrax TL1s and have been told that it won't work. I will give
it a try, but so far haven't gotten all the pieces I need in one place.

It's interesting that there have been almost no responses to questions
about transponding. I asked similar questions on the DigiTrax group
and got only responses saying things like "it doesn't work" and "it's
not useful." The former may be true, but the latter certainly isn't!
There may be some "dirty little secret" to the DigiTrax
implementation or maybe most people are waiting until a standard
method is added to the DCC spec.

Hang in there and let us know your progress. You're not the only one
interested in this feature.

John


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

bobgrosh <bobgrosh@...>
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "mmogen2004" <n_meister@m...>
wrote:
Allan,

Mike Mogensen here perplexed as usual in Indy.

Was wondering if you or any member has had first hand experience
implementing transponding/detection using BDL162 and RX4.
I've been using it outdoors on my G scale layout for several years.
While detection using the BDL is a real pain outdoors, the
transponding is very reliable. I have more than 50 transponders
working.

One thing important to remember is that the size of the current pulse
is important when in districts consuming a lot of amps. The resistor
and capacitor on F0 are a must for high current users. I decreased
the resistor value by 1/3 to make sure it would work with the large
motors in my locos. Also, In "G" scale some manufactures have added
capacitors to some of their electronics that are directly across the
rails. They have to be removed or a limit resistor added.


B0B


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

I think the biggest problem with transponding is the cost. I'm not
saying Digitrax is overcharging (I'm sure others will :-), it's just
that the shear number of transponders, detectors, and BDL16's you need
adds up to a pile of money and time to install. It's not for everyone.


Re: Late Starting

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

It sounds like you have your acceleration CV set too high. Set CV3 to
0. Your problem should go away. Once you are sure your problem is
gone, you can program CV3 to any value that gives you acceleration
that you like.

Allan


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

bobgrosh
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "wirefordcc"
<wire4dcc_admin@c...> wrote:

I think the biggest problem with transponding is the cost. I'm not
saying Digitrax is overcharging (I'm sure others will :-), it's
just
that the shear number of transponders, detectors, and BDL16's you
need
adds up to a pile of money and time to install. It's not for
everyone.

One reason I switched from detection to Transponding was the cost.

Transponding if far more powerful than detection. That translates
into doing much more with far fewer components.
First of all, The TD4 Transponding function decoder is one of the
cheapest four function decoders out there. Put one in a caboose for
the lights, and Transponding didn't cost you a thing. I use Digitrax
decoders in my locos, so Transponding didn't cost anything there
either. When a train crosses a boundary between two Transponding
sections, software can track the location, speed and length of the
entire train. Ther is no absolute need to put a transponder in every
car.

Second. There is no real need to use the 16 detection sections on a
BDL 168. Divide the mainline into just three Transponding zones and
software can track the locations of a hundred locos and cabooses. You
can virtually set up 360 degrees ( virtual detection blocks ) on your
mainline with only three insulators and feeders. Software can activat
one or hundreds of signals based on the ocupancy of these virtual
blocks.

When I changed over my Garden railroad from block detection to
Transponding I removed literally 125 pounds of copper wire from the
garden along with 30 insulators, 60 resistors, 11 BD1's, and one of
the four BDL16 cards. Had I gone to Transponding first, instead of
trying to make detection work outdoors, I would have saved hours of
frustration and hundreds of dollars.

B0B


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

bobgrosh
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "mmogen2004" <n_meister@m...>
wrote:
Allan,

Mike Mogensen here perplexed as usual in Indy.

Was wondering if you or any member has had first hand experience
implementing transponding/detection using BDL162 and RX4.

I read all the info I could get before starting, both the manuals
that
came with the units and also Loy's DCC Encyclopedia.

I wired the BDL and RX4 up on a board and then applied the section
in
the RX4 manual (8.6) to test it on a piece of flex track using one
zone.
I used a loco with a DN163AO decoder, with CV61 set to 002 to
perform
the testing.

Detection works OK using the LT5 tester and the correct diodes
light
up to detect occupancy so am satified that detection works as it
should but I get no indication of transponding either in the BDL
162
or on the DT400 throttle using the FIND key.

I double checked all the wiring and OPS Switches on the BDL using
the
troubleshooting tips in both the manuals and the DCC Encyc and am
satisfied that all are correctly set; still no transponding.

Maybe the magic wand or secret incantation was omitted from the
packaging?

I know this can be a complicated subject but everything I read
doesn't
seem to indicate and impossible implemantation.

Thanks,
Mike
Just a thought, You do not need to select the loco for detection, but
you do need to select it for transponding. Did you try to run the
loco on that short test track? If the loco is transponding the front
LED should have a slight flicker to it when the headlight is off.

B0B


DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING

mmogen2004
 

Just a thought, You do not need to select the loco for detection, but
you do need to select it for transponding. Did you try to run the
loco on that short test track? If the loco is transponding the front
LED should have a slight flicker to it when the headlight is off.

B0B


Bob,

Apparently someone has gotten this system to work! Good!

The loco DID run forward and back on the test track; turning the
loco around, it worked the same way and the LED does flicker when
the headlight is off so according to what I've read, this does
indicate that transponding is turned on.
However, I get no loco address showing in the DT400 when I push
the 'FIND' button with the loco sitting on the test track.
Unless I missed something, this is the way to find a particular loco
sitting on a detection section, like track in a hidden area;
You select the address you want to locate then push the 'FIND'
button but no section is indicated in the DT400 display.
Digitrax gave me the answer 'o' the day: check your wiring.
I set up a terminal strip as shown in their manual.
I used #18 stranded wire from the terminal strip thru the RX4 on the
non-printed side, exiting the printed side and then soldered to pin
#1 on the connector that the BDL162 plugs in to. I loosely looped
the wire as shown in their instructions.
Should I have also soldered the wire to pin 'A' on the pin connector?
If I move the wire from the test track section to any of the other
pin connectors, the LT5 shows that detection is working in each
respective section.
So, according to what I've read, loco detection works fine but
transponding is not showing the address sitting in a detection
section.

This is as far as I've gotten so far because I want to be sure
transponding works as it should before laying all the track in my
yard and hidden areas.
Was wondering if any later info/manual was available on this.

Mike


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING

bobgrosh
 

Mike
Possibility 1: You need a wire from the booster ground to pin 11.

Possibility 2: You need one detection section wired up and working.
Leave it connected, don't remove the wire and then connect up just
Transponding. The board needs the DCC track signal for Transponding
to work. My guess is that you probably have got detection working and
then just added the wires for Transponding, but I mention this just
in case.

Possibility 3: Each time you try something, reverse the a and b wires
at the booster. If it is not working, reverse the A and B wires right
at the command station/booster and try a second time. (I had a RX4
with the printed side backward from the others, maybe you got one
like that too.)

The direction the wire passes through the RX is important, as well as
which track feeder wire is connected to "A" on the booster. Each time
you try it, also swap the loco from end to end on the track. If a
loco transponds in one orientation but not the other, then you are
close to having it work, but still have a polarity issue as far as
the direction the wire travels through the RX1 or the polarity of the
booster output. When everything is connected right, a Transponding
car or loco will work regardless of orientation on the rails.

Just to confirm, the dt400 find key does indeed seem to be a good
check to see if Transponding is working. I have used it often.

One last thing if all the above still does not help. Plug your
throttle direct into the command station, connect the BDL directly to
the other loco net socket on the command station. (eliminate all
other devices from the LocoNet). Make sure the loco net cable is a
good cable, A Digitrax factory cable is a best choice. Check the
cable against the diagram in the big system manual and make sure the
colors and polarity match the diagram exactly! Mis-wired LocoNet
cables may work fine for most other devices, but will not work at all
with Transponding. Don't ask me why, I don't know why Transponding is
so picky about the LocoNet cable, must be another polarity issue.

If all of the above still does not help, then let me know. I'll hook
up my spare command station and a BDL and experiment. Perhaps some
good clear photos of your test setup could be posted or emailed. I
live in Florida. Planning a vacation? Maybe you could stop by and
bring your stuff.

B0B


Re: DIGITRAX TRANSPONDING/DETECTION

bobgrosh
 

I knew I had worked on a page to explain transpondiing, and it had to
be somewhere. Well I finally found it. Still needs to be cleaned up,
but here it is.


http://1stclass.mylargescale.com/ally/04technology/0402Transponding/Hard
ware/default.htm

Maybe there is something on these two drawing that will help.

B0B