Date   
Solid State Question

Donald Scharenbroch
 

All

 

I am a little embarrassed to ask this but here goes. I am looking for some suggestion on learning enough about solid state wiring to build my DCC N scale train layout.

 

I have a Bachelors and Masters degrees in Information Technology and Information Systems. I have extensive experience in electromechanical systems and JIC and point to point wiring diagrams. I also can program. Unfortunately there was no reason during my career to be involved in solid state systems.

 

I don’t want to become an expert. I just need enough practical knowledge to build my layout. Does anyone have a suggestion on reading materials or source reference info?

 

Thanks

 

Don S

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

gowers21
 

Many circuits that I have seen include a diode with the resister.  This is a protection item so that if track power changes (within an auto-reversing loop using an AR-1, or during a short, for example), the LED will not be fed power from the wrong side.  A diode only allows power to flow in one direction and safeguards the circuitry.

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

James Shourt <jeshourt@...>
 

You will need a minimum of a dropping resistor to limit current and a diode to avoid reverse voltage breakdown of the diode (death).  I recommend using a full wave bridge and a buck regulator set to the desired current level and in this way you can eliminate the dropping resistors for each LED. I use buck regulators all the time as they can power up to 300 LEDs in parallel at 10 ma each if you use one of good design and set the output current/voltage correctly. The only other requirement in wiring LEDs in parallel is that they be of the same type and best if ordered at the same time so the batch is the same.

It is best to use some other source of power other than DCC track power as it comes at a high cost compared to a power supply from an old phone or other unused device.
 
James E. Shourt

Chief Engineer and Owner
Shourt Line by Soft Works Ltd
P O Box 1786 
Oceanside, CA 92051

Phone: 310.622.4431
Email:
js@...
Web: www.ShourtLine.com
Skype name: jeshourt for voice or video conference

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

Vollrath, Don <don.vollrath@...>
 

Quite a collection Rich. Each with its own application reasons for existence, complications, advantages and limitations of usefulness.

For a simple on/off indicator of DCC track power use a diode in inverse-parallel with the LED and a series resistor to limit the current. If you use a 2-leaded bi-color R/G LED  it will glow with both colors on and you don’t need the protective diode.

DonV

 

From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Sunday, October 09, 2016 11:09 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Powering LEDs with track power

 



Below is what I am seeing in various DCC forums.

http://tinyurl.com/gljej4u

My NCE Power Cab uses a red 3mm LED and a 1k resistor to monitor track power so I have used the same on a few sidings.

Rich


Re: Powering LEDs with track power

asychis@...
 

Yep, just the LED and a resistor. Jerry Michels

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

Keith Woodbridge
 

Hi Jim,

You can power an LED direct from the track using a 1k resistor in series but you have to get the polarity right. If it doesn't work first time, just reverse the connections.

This is fine where the track polarity remains constant which is true for most cases. However, if you have any auto reversers of polarity reversing boosters, don't use that particular section of track.

Have fun,

Keith

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

Vollrath, Don <don.vollrath@...>
 

One resistor to limit current and one diode to protect the LED from reverse voltage.


DonV

On Oct 9, 2016, at 11:09 AM, richg_1998@...<mailto:richg_1998@...> [WiringForDCC] <WiringForDCC@...<mailto:WiringForDCC@...>> wrote:






Below is what I am seeing in various DCC forums.


http://tinyurl.com/gljej4u


My NCE Power Cab uses a red 3mm LED and a 1k resistor to monitor track power so I have used the same on a few sidings.


Rich

Re: Powering LEDs with track power

richg_1998@...
 

Below is what I am seeing in various DCC forums.

http://tinyurl.com/gljej4u

My NCE Power Cab uses a red 3mm LED and a 1k resistor to monitor track power so I have used the same on a few sidings.

Rich

Powering LEDs with track power

Jim Rizzolo <jimrizzolo@...>
 

I'm thinking of powering LEDs using track power. Is this possible directly or do I need any special circuitry. If so what would that be?
Thanks in advance

Re: Using a three way wall switch to control turnouts

Robert Kenyon
 

Just be careful you don't wire the switch such that continuous voltage is applied to the switch machine or solenoid.  They can only take momentary current.  Some have contacts in the switch machine such that current is cutoff when the switch operates, but make sure you don't set up such that the solenoid is left energized.  Will burn out in short order.

I use Atlas HO switch controllers on my N Scale layout with exclusively Kato switches.  Using simple diodes, I establish a positive and a negative bus, and run one to each 1 terminal.  The separate third terminal is connected to the switch machine.  The other contact on the switch machine is wired back to the neutral of the DC buses.  Depending on which the position the sliding push button is in, either a negative or a positive current flows through the switch machine when you press down on the sliding push button.  You press down of the sliding push button, and release immediately so no permanent voltage is imposed - only a momentary one.  When you release the button, it springs back to the open circuit position.  You can tell which way the switch is set up by looking at which position the sliding push button is in.

Advantage - Much less expensive than the Kato controllers.  

Disadvantage - Switch position not as obvious to the eye.  Also, diodes will eventually need to be replaced over time.  Could fail in conduct mode but that will be evident the first time you try to operate a switch via the failed diode.  Never posed a problem for me. 

Item - This results in only a half-wave pulse hitting the AC switch machine (on Kato) but I never had a problem with a Kato switch not operating because of inadequate power.

Re: Using a three way wall switch to control turnouts

Stuart Bouchey <sbouchey@...>
 

A four-way wall switch (used between three-way switches) is a DPDT switch.

When wired as a reversing switch it can be used to control turnouts when using a single power supply.

Stuart

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: dale.gloer@... [WiringForDCC]
Sent: Friday, September 30, 2016 10:25
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Using a three way wall switch to control turnouts

 

 

A 3 way wall switch is just a SPDT switch.  You can wire it like the Tortoise diagrams which use a dual voltage power supply show.

Dale Gloer

Re: Using a three way wall switch to control turnouts

Dale Gloer
 

A 3 way wall switch is just a SPDT switch.  You can wire it like the Tortoise diagrams which use a dual voltage power supply show.

Dale Gloer

Re: Servo Motor Turnout Control

colinseggie@...
 

Thanks Paul,
A lot if not most of those 555circuits on Google are crap - dont wiork and sing tunes!!

Re: Dual Turnout Control

asychis@...
 

Thanks to all for the help.  Need to do some work on this, but I think I have some good leads.  Jerry Michels

Re: Servo Motor Turnout Control

Paul O
 

Doc, look in ‘Photos’; I just posted a simple diagram on how to wire a 555 to be able to control a servo between two positions: “Servo Control”.

Sorry, I don’t remember where I got the diagram so I can’t give credit.

Paul O

 

From: WiringForDCC@... [mailto:WiringForDCC@...]
Sent: Thursday, September 29, 2016 3:43 AM
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Servo Motor Turnout Control

Hi all ,I have been fiddling with 555 timers with little success. I know there ars commercial Servo drivers, out there but most are expensvive. Does anyone have an easy /relativly cheep servo control driver to turn our turnouts?(That they are prepared to share?) Alan Gartner says his timers are only for Stall Motors!!

Thanks Doc Colin

Re: Servo Motor Turnout Control

Stuart Bouchey <sbouchey@...>
 

Hi

In the pre Arduino days the NMRA monthly magazine twice published an article on a servo motor controller.

It used a form of perfboard and thru hole components; I built one and it worked very well.

Sorry, but I can not give you any specifics as all the MRR paper (including magazines) went to recycling when I moved.

As Jim said, there is a whole world out there.

Stuart

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

From: 'Jim Cubie' jimcubie@... [WiringForDCC]
Sent: Thursday, September 29, 2016 10:46
To: WiringForDCC@...
Subject: [WiringForDCC] Re: Servo Motor Turnout Control

 

 

There is a whole world out there on the web using Arduinos with special attachments to use servos to control turnouts.  There are cheap servos (and arduinos).  There was also an article in model railroad hobbyist in the last year or 2 about using cheap servos to control turnouts without Arduino controls.  Tam Valley sells servo based turnout controls.

Using a three way wall switch to control turnouts

Jim Rizzolo <jimrizzolo@...>
 

I was visiting a layout where the owner used three way electrical switches to control his turnouts. It seems like an inexpensive way to throw the turnout and power the frog. He mentioned that he got the idea from an article in Model Railroader. Does anyone have details on this?


Thanks

Re: Servo Motor Turnout Control

Jim Cubie <jimcubie@...>
 

There is a whole world out there on the web using Arduinos with special attachments to use servos to control turnouts.  There are cheap servos (and arduinos).  There was also an article in model railroad hobbyist in the last year or 2 about using cheap servos to control turnouts without Arduino controls.  Tam Valley sells servo based turnout controls.

Servo Motor Turnout Control

colinseggie@...
 

Hi all ,I have been fiddling with 555 timers with little success. I know there ars commercial Servo drivers, out there but most are expensvive. Does anyone have an easy /relativly cheep servo control driver to turn our turnouts?(That they are prepared to share?) Alan Gartner says his timers are only for Stall Motors!!

Thanks Doc Colin

Re: Dual Turnout Control

Rob McLear
 

Jerry in the January 2008 copy of Model Railroader there is an article describing how to go about doing what you want to do that is controlling Tortoise machines from two locations.   It starts on page 82, let me know if you don't have a copy of the mag.

Rob McLear
Aussie.