Date   
Re: Another DCC reversing loop , more complex

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

See [reply]s below.

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@...
[mailto:WiringForDCC@...]On Behalf Of Rasa and Blair Smith
Sent: Saturday, April 08, 2006 8:07 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] Another DCC reversing loop , more complex


Thank you, Don. See responses below. As usual, you hit the nail on the
head, but I have more questions.

1. Small Loop B must be longer than a anything that passes through it. Let
track 3 be connected to a conventional A-R.
Wire up track 2 of loop B through a DPDT relay that selects track power
from either the A-R power of track 3 or
fixed polarity of the outside track loop depending on position of turnout
at 3.

B is actually the defining length of this section of the railroad, so that's
fine. The longest of the storage tracks on the RHS is only a foot or so
longer than loop B. Despite using the relay solution on the previous
trackage question, I had not considered it's applicability as you have
described. Looks like I've got an extra set of gaps to put in at sw 2-3.
No problem, I'll issue the necessary work permits for the track gang.

[reply] When laying track, always consider providing insulating rail joiners at the diverging frog end of every switch to separate reversing loops, signal detection blocks & other types of electrical power control sections or districts. You can always wire them together under the layout when first built...Rewiring them later for a different purpose is much easier if the gaps are already in place.

2. An even easier answer for track 4. Wire it up through a conventional
A-R. Connect track switches and enough of
the big outside loop to the left to allow for an entire train as being part
of that A-R section. If you use a good solid
state A-R, like DCC Specialties OG-AR, it doesn't matter that the train
passes through those sections of track (from D)
without actually reversing direction of travel. It won't wear out.
Sounded good to start with, but...

3 - Why would a PM42 (or other relay) wear out preferentially to Solid State
reversing at track 4? I don't see it switching constantly just because
trains are traversing it. Except when we are turning trains, it would
simply remain aligned with the last non-reversing section track it aligned
with, and both ends will be aligned, just as the AR for B will; what am I
missing?

[reply] My bad. You are right. For continuous running around the outer loop neither A-R unit would not need to flip after the first pass.

4 - If a train traverses 4-A-2, 2-A-4, 3-A-4, or 4-A-3, it may occupy two AR
sections, with about a 5' section of non-reversing track between them thru
A. As I understand it, hitting the second AR section, with reversed
polarity may cause both AR to flip, then flip again, quite possibly
oscillating. What have I missed? Is this related to your SS
recommendation for 4?

[reply] No, the two passing tracks "1" and from the 2/3/D switch to 4 are fixed in polarity. This satisfies the requirement of not having two A-R tracks joining one another. If sw D selects the route from 2 down toward the outer loop, track 2 is at the same fixed polarity as A. Re-read my #1. However, if you want to consider a 2nd train waiting at short track 4 while a 1st train traverses the Left outer outer loop toward/from sw D or track 1, then perhaps another relay to select "Fixed polarity of A" vs "A-R via4" track power, based on the position of the switch joining track 4 would be in order.

I count 9 track gaps to do the above. (2) at sw A, (2) at sw D, (2) for both ends of track 4, (1) each at the sw for 2 passing tracks leading up toward the "D", and (1) 1/2 way around the Lower Left loop.

DonV

Re: Another DCC reversing loop , more complex

Blair & Rasa
 

Thanks, Don. I've learned the hard way to install the extra insulating
joiners, over the protests of my tracklaying crew. In fact, on the portions
of the layout that may become signalled or otherwise occupancy-detected, I'm
considering insulating the points-end as well. Reason - Jim Moir's
Grapevine signalling system. Jim recommends isolating all 6 rail points as
part of the installation.

As for the reversing section at 4, I'll have to think about it; although,
I'll be able to lay that track in about a month, then "experiment" instead
of thinking - grin.

Thanks for all your help
Blair Smith
Building the 1985 ACR from Soo to Hearst in HO.

Re: Another DCC reversing loop , more complex

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

Blair,
You can isolate each switch (6 insulated joiners) and it is prototypical to do so. But then you need yet another train detector for that tiny block. After much thinking about how complicated I wanted my signal system to be vs what it would cost, I decided to make the whole track switch a part of the electrical track block leading up to the points. After all, if there is something on the switch it is also blocking the path that leads up to it. Insulated joiners at the diverging (frog) ends of the switch define separate electrical blocks of signal detection, reversing sections, booster districts or manual switch controlled staging sidings. It makes sense to put insulated joiners there.

On mainline tracks I put one of my reflective IR train sensors at the gaps of each diverging path and a low cost DCC track current sensor on the feeders to each section, which includes the track switch. I then diode couple each IR sensor from each end of the block to the appropriate track current sensor(s). And...Whaa-Laa! Whole train detection without special conductive wheel sets! Even works with (ug) plastic wheels.

Think about train flow over every path and direction around your layout plan. Draw it out to scale if possible and consider trains longer than that allowed in Loop B, and possible trains waiting to enter those same tracks, once clear. Using a relay to select the source of track power from one set of tracks to another depending on the turnout path (fixed polarity or from an A-R unit of another track) is an easy way to get what you want.

DonV

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@...
[mailto:WiringForDCC@...]On Behalf Of Rasa and Blair Smith
Sent: Monday, April 10, 2006 8:53 PM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: RE: [WiringForDCC] Another DCC reversing loop , more complex


Thanks, Don. I've learned the hard way to install the extra insulating
joiners, over the protests of my tracklaying crew. In fact, on the portions
of the layout that may become signalled or otherwise occupancy-detected, I'm
considering insulating the points-end as well. Reason - Jim Moir's
Grapevine signalling system. Jim recommends isolating all 6 rail points as
part of the installation.

As for the reversing section at 4, I'll have to think about it; although,
I'll be able to lay that track in about a month, then "experiment" instead
of thinking - grin.

Thanks for all your help
Blair Smith
Building the 1985 ACR from Soo to Hearst in HO.




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

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

helinut2 <gcm2@...>
 

Well, I did just as George said. Got the RShack Digital, set to about
485 deg. I think I'll go higher next time - you say 675!. It did take
a sceond or 2 longer then I would have liked. Soldering 20 g copper
stranded to code 100 rails. USING FLUX! My first try was sloppy, but
it worked, and my next 6 or 8 were getting pretty good now and then.
Got some very good mechanical joints. I only slopped up onto the rail
top twice, then filed it off.

To any other beginner (I'm definitely), here's my "system". Weight
down the track (I use the heavy solder roll). I have a little aligator
clip to hold the wire laid against the rail, and a BIG clip on the
other side of the joint just as a heat sink. May not be needed. Flux
with toothpick, tin the solder tip, stick solder point just on the end
of the wire against the rail, and flow solder from the wire end out
onto the rail. I got the hang of it.

The only slight melting trouble I had was when I accidentally brushed
the solder tip against the plastic ties.

Gonna get 20 g solid and try that tonight. I think that will be easier
like Allan sez.

A minor brain treaser part of this is keeping straight which side is
which on curves (red & black wire), and the one switch I did so far.

Also, after reading up on this whole deal and learning all I can, I'm
gonna solder track sections together (at the joiners) in lengths of
about 6 feet, each of these sections with the soldered feeder piece in
the middle. Is 6 feet too short? Allan sez 10' for code 100.

Thanks everybody.

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "George Pavlisko" <lrprat2@...>
wrote:

Counter point: DO NOT SOLDER any turnouts just the track. If a
turnout
dies you must replace it. The answer to your soldering is what I had
to do, I bought a Radio Shack Digital soldering iron for $69.95.
Set the temp a 675deg for rails, 550deg for feeders and 475deg for
decoders and Tortise. No plastic smell!!!
IF you are using flextrack then solder BOTH rails in the curves and
every other (alternate east and west rail) in the straights. Keep
your
red and black rails straight and have at it. 683 ft of track and 110
turnouts and still going. Once you get the hang of it it is fun to
solder.
Take Care
George P.

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

Vollrath, Don <dvollrath@...>
 

You will find that using solid wire is easier than stranded...especially when bent to the right shape to hold it in place while you solder. No need for the alligator clip...which also sucks away some of that precious heat. A higher setting of temp will have more heat in the iron for instant transfer to the joint when needed. Be sure that whatever you put on top of the rail to hold it down isn't taking away heat either...or worse... going to melt into a mess.
DonV

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

Earl T. Hackett <hackete1@...>
 

Typical temperatures for wave soldering PC boards is 700 F. My Weller iron has a thermocouple in the tip and is set to 700 as well and I seldom have a problem unless the mass gets really large - like code 100 rail. You might consider a larger tip (more thermal mass is a good thing when you're trying to heat up a relatively big hunk of metal) rather than a temperature over 700F.

----- Original Message -----
From: helinut2
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:45 AM
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Solder or no solder - thanks


Well, I did just as George said. Got the RShack Digital, set to about
485 deg. I think I'll go higher next time - you say 675!. It did take
a sceond or 2 longer then I would have liked. Soldering 20 g copper
stranded to code 100 rails. USING FLUX! My first try was sloppy, but
it worked, and my next 6 or 8 were getting pretty good now and then.

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "helinut2" <gcm2@...> wrote:

Well, I did just as George said. Got the RShack Digital, set to
about
485 deg. I think I'll go higher next time - you say 675!. It did
take
a sceond or 2 longer then I would have liked. Soldering 20 g
copper
stranded to code 100 rails. USING FLUX! My first try was sloppy,
but
it worked, and my next 6 or 8 were getting pretty good now and
then.
Got some very good mechanical joints. I only slopped up onto the
rail
top twice, then filed it off.

To any other beginner (I'm definitely), here's my "system". Weight
down the track (I use the heavy solder roll). I have a little
aligator
clip to hold the wire laid against the rail, and a BIG clip on the
other side of the joint just as a heat sink. May not be needed.
Flux
with toothpick, tin the solder tip, stick solder point just on the
end
of the wire against the rail, and flow solder from the wire end
out
onto the rail. I got the hang of it.

The only slight melting trouble I had was when I accidentally
brushed
the solder tip against the plastic ties.

Gonna get 20 g solid and try that tonight. I think that will be
easier
like Allan sez.

A minor brain treaser part of this is keeping straight which side
is
which on curves (red & black wire), and the one switch I did so
far.

Also, after reading up on this whole deal and learning all I can,
I'm
gonna solder track sections together (at the joiners) in lengths
of
about 6 feet, each of these sections with the soldered feeder
piece in
the middle. Is 6 feet too short? Allan sez 10' for code 100.

Thanks everybody.

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "George Pavlisko" <lrprat2@>
wrote:

Counter point: DO NOT SOLDER any turnouts just the track. If a
turnout
dies you must replace it. The answer to your soldering is what I
had
to do, I bought a Radio Shack Digital soldering iron for $69.95.
Set the temp a 675deg for rails, 550deg for feeders and 475deg
for
decoders and Tortise. No plastic smell!!!
IF you are using flextrack then solder BOTH rails in the curves
and
every other (alternate east and west rail) in the straights.
Keep
your
red and black rails straight and have at it. 683 ft of track and
110
turnouts and still going. Once you get the hang of it it is fun
to
solder.
Take Care
George P.

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

You can go every six feet if you want. That's what I would do on my
own layout if I was soldering joiners. But that is probably just a
bit of overkill for code 100 and probably even code 83, so I tell
people 10' (actually, you would probably do 9 feet since that would be
3 flex track sections.)

Allan

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

helinut2 <gcm2@...>
 

I used about 600 deg last night for both soldering feeders and rail
joiners. Works great and quick.

--- In WiringForDCC@..., "Earl T. Hackett"
<hackete1@...> wrote:

Typical temperatures for wave soldering PC boards is 700 F. My
Weller iron has a thermocouple in the tip and is set to 700 as well
and I seldom have a problem unless the mass gets really large - like
code 100 rail. You might consider a larger tip (more thermal mass
is a good thing when you're trying to heat up a relatively big hunk
of metal) rather than a temperature over 700F.
----- Original Message -----
From: helinut2
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:45 AM
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Solder or no solder - thanks


Well, I did just as George said. Got the RShack Digital, set to
about
485 deg. I think I'll go higher next time - you say 675!. It did
take
a sceond or 2 longer then I would have liked. Soldering 20 g
copper
stranded to code 100 rails. USING FLUX! My first try was sloppy,
but
it worked, and my next 6 or 8 were getting pretty good now and
then.


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Wiring Colour Coding

Dick Freeman <dick.freeman@...>
 

Thanks for the feedback some weeks ago on USA wiring standards. Iíve now
been able to convert them to UK practice.



I am building an OO / HO layout mainly based Digitrax equipment and about to
commence track laying and wiring. It intend having one Super Chief Command
Control (with integral booster), three auto reverse controllers and three
Detection Zones each with a detection decoder (hence a maximum of 16 wires
each running to the Rail A).



In addition to track power distribution there will also be wiring for point
(switch) decoders and motors, signalling LEDs and motors as well as
illumination of landscapes etc.



Iíd appreciate guidance on colour coding for wiring: particularly for the
track power distribution. I had in mind to provide different colours
feeding Rail A of each detection zone.



Dick Freeman




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Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

helinut2 <gcm2@...>
 

This is a do-I-have-this-right question. I have a double-crossover,
4 switches with a crossover in the middle. As far as the switches
go, I'm not going to solder any of the joiners from the adjacent
rails to the switches as advised all over the place! so they can be
easily replaced.

Do I have to solder feeders to all of them (attach wires where shown
by Allan on website) in that relatively small area? Seems like
overkill to have 8 feeders dropping down in a 1-sq foot area... but,
if that's the way, then so be it. (Unpowered frogs, Atlas switches,
by the way).


--- In WiringForDCC@..., "helinut2" <gcm2@...> wrote:

I used about 600 deg last night for both soldering feeders and
rail
joiners. Works great and quick.

Re: Wiring Colour Coding

Earl T. Hackett <hackete1@...>
 

I know there are same color standards, but when it comes to power distribution wiring, but I see no reason why you can't develop and document your own color code. Over the years a lot of modifications to the original track plan have been made and there are a few more on the way. These changes required the addition or modification of power distribution wiring, but I had made the mistake of using only a limited color code - booster A had red and black leads, B had green and brown, etc. A booster might supply 12 to 15 signal detection blocks. So when I had to cut into the middle of a supply wire there were 7 or 8 of the same color all in the same cable. Thus I occasionally cut the wrong wire and several times I didn't notice it until weeks later and it often took many days to find the error.

I finally tossed in the towel and am finishing a complete rewiring of the layout. I've gone to twisted pair wiring for each power block. There's some debate about whether this is necessary, but from an organization perspective it can't be beat. I use a unique pair of colors for each signaling block in each cable race - 6 colors will produce 15 unique color pairs. Each pair goes from a DPDT switch on a power distribution panel to the tracks so the wiring is self documenting. The color combination for a particular block is easily determined at the power distribution panel and the pair can be instantly identified at any point along the run.

Twisting the wires is easily done by hand and takes almost no time at all. I cut a pair of wires a little longer than necessary and make one into a tight coil held loosely with a single wire tie. The coil can be easily wraped around the other wire and drops from the rails are soldered to the appropriate wire as the run progresses.

I took some 'before' pictures and will have to get same 'after' pictures to post on the photo page so you can see the effect of this transformation.

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

Earl T. Hackett <hackete1@...>
 

I have power drops from every individual piece of rail, no matter how short. Yes, in some areas there are a LOT of drops, but in my rewiring project, I've found several joints where the unsoldered rail joiners were not conduction power. So yes, I do recommend putting in all those drops. It's easier to do it with the original construction than to add it years later.

To keep things reasonable, I do solder joiners when short (3" or less) lengths of rail were required to fill a gap between turnouts. If the turnout has to be replaced, the short length of rail just gets replaced too.

----- Original Message -----
From: helinut2
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Friday, April 14, 2006 9:38 AM
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Solder or no solder - thanks


This is a do-I-have-this-right question. I have a double-crossover,
4 switches with a crossover in the middle. As far as the switches
go, I'm not going to solder any of the joiners from the adjacent
rails to the switches as advised all over the place! so they can be
easily replaced.

Re: Solder or no solder - thanks

wirefordcc <wire4dcc_admin@...>
 

I assume you are looking at the double crossover in my website at:
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/switches_walthers_old.htm#a2

Earl's advice is correct. Here is a little more info to justify the
need to do so much soldering. The Walther's #6 double crossover is
actually 4 independent turnouts. They are not wired together.
Hence the need to solder to all 4 of them.

My drawing is based on the old, non DCC friendly turnout. I presume
the new DCC friendly turnout is also 4 independent turnouts. This
gives you maximum wiring flexibility. If your double cross over has
a reversing loop going through it, you will need to wire it a little
differently. See my website for more info on this topic at:
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track_2.htm#a43

Allan

Re: now soldering switches in crossover

helinut2 <gcm2@...>
 

I have a separate 25 deg crossover in the middle of the 4 switches.
This setup is 2 places in my layout.

Looks like I'll be soldering to all 4 (well, 8) switches. I sure
like Earl's idea of going ahead and soldering the joiners between a
short track section and switch. This is exactly what I have in some
cases.

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

I assume you are looking at the double crossover in my website
at:
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/switches_walthers_old.htm#a2

Earl's advice is correct. Here is a little more info to justify
the
need to do so much soldering. The Walther's #6 double crossover
is
actually 4 independent turnouts. They are not wired together.
Hence the need to solder to all 4 of them.

My drawing is based on the old, non DCC friendly turnout. I
presume
the new DCC friendly turnout is also 4 independent turnouts. This
gives you maximum wiring flexibility. If your double cross over
has
a reversing loop going through it, you will need to wire it a
little
differently. See my website for more info on this topic at:
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track_2.htm#a43

Allan

Re: now soldering switches in crossover

Earl T. Hackett <hackete1@...>
 

But just solder one end of the short rail - leave the other unsoldered to allow for expansion.

----- Original Message -----
From: helinut2
To: WiringForDCC@...
Sent: Friday, April 14, 2006 11:31 AM
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: now soldering switches in crossover


I have a separate 25 deg crossover in the middle of the 4 switches.
This setup is 2 places in my layout.

Looks like I'll be soldering to all 4 (well, 8) switches. I sure
like Earl's idea of going ahead and soldering the joiners between a
short track section and switch. This is exactly what I have in some
cases.

Shinohara HO code 100 switches and DCC.

rockpizza09
 

I am new to DCC and have a question about some Shinohara switches
that I have. I have been on the wiringfordcc web site in particular
the turnout page:

http://www.wiringfordcc.com/switches.htm

I noticed that in the first section INFORMATION #2-17: "What is a
DCC Friendly Turnout?" the second illustration of a turn out looks a
like the Shinohara switches that I have. There appears to be two
differences on my switches 1. At the points of the switch they are
connected together by a metal strip held in place by a rivit. 2. On
my switches there is an electrical conection which is common between
the stock rails, closure rails and frog rails.

I went to this page
http://www.wiringfordcc.com/switches_walthers_old.htm and read about
making older Walthers Shinohara switches DCC friendly. This appears
to be a lot of work and I don't understand why it needs to be done.

Since the stock rails, closure rails and frog rails are all connected,
if I were to hook up the switch as a power routing switch as shown on
the web page, insulating the frog rails, without making all of the
rail cuts, would this switch not be DCC friendly?

What am I missing here? Any help would be appreciated.

I am using a Digitrax DCC system.

Thanks

Rock

Re: What do you think of the Wiring For DCC website?

Dick Freeman <dick.freeman@...>
 

Allan



Iíve just filled in the survey with complementary ticks all round. But I
also thought that via this note Iíd add a further thought to you for
consideration. The website is currently a set of useful topics but would
perhaps benefit both inexperienced and experienced DCC practitioners to have
a check list of the steps to be addressed when planning the wiring of a
layout.



Such a check list could say list the appropriate sequence of processes to be
handled when planning the design and building of a wiring network and assist
all concerned in avoiding pitfalls and as a consequence helps us all improve
the quality, efficiency and maybe economics of what we do. It could also
perhaps be used as a useful means to cross refer (link) to all the topics on
the site.



I hope this is of interest.



Keep up the good work and a happy Easter,



Dick Freeman

-----Original Message-----
From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...] On
Behalf Of wirefordcc
Sent: 30 March 2006 04:03
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] What do you think of the Wiring For DCC website?



Now you can express your opinion about the Wiring For DCC website.
Just go to: HYPERLINK
"http://www.wiringfordcc.com/wirefordcc_toc.htm"http://www.wiringfordcc.com/
wirefordcc_toc.htm and the
brief survey at the end of the What's New section. Thank you for your
support!

Allan





HYPERLINK "http://www.WiringForDCC.com"http://www.WiringForDCC.com




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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Cubicle trains and reversing loop

Irene and Lubos Palounek <PAL@...>
 

Cubicle train

What about using Märklin C-track? You can get started by purchasing a
"not-too expensive" Märklin start-up set, see, for example,
www.eisentrains.com

On top of filing cabinets, or in full view in the corner, you can
build "return loops" which are easy to implement in the Märklin
C-track 3-rail system and have just little over 30 inches diameter. If
you buy two starter sets with two Mobile Controls, you can build a two
parallel track version and let yourself and a guest each operate one
of the trains. I would probably build a "30 inches diameter helix" on
of the ends and put the tracks on two levels or go up and down to the
"return loop" end.

C-track is so easy to assemble, looks nice, and is so robust that you
can run trains on them with practically no de-railments. And the
relatively small curve radius fit niceky in the corners

Any thoughts or comments? Being retired, I cannot try it myself.

Cheers, Lubos

Wiring Tortoise and Hare/powered frogs

modelbuilderca <Howard_Lloyd@...>
 

I am new to DCC and am building a new layout (HO) using Tortoise switch
machines and Hare decoders. There is nothing I can find in the
directions for wiring up the Hare that contemplates powering the frog.
(I am using Walthers DCC friendly turnouts with insulated frog.)Am I
correct that Hare cannot be used to power the frog? If so, is it OK
not to power it? (I am mostly running 4 axle diesels, but cannot tell
for sure that every engine in the future will be able to negotiate a
dead frog. I do hear that there is some danger of a damaging short if
the frog is powered.) So, advice please: powered frogs yes or no;
Hare decoder yes or no? Thanks.