Staging yard wiring question


Blair
 

I have a 12-track staging yard; in order to implement detection, I need to run one bus wire for each track's front rail, having run that wire through both an on/off switch and a current detector. All is fine there.  However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive.

Comments?

Blair


Steve Haas
 

I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . . However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks? I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed? I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.

If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.

I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.

Best regards,

Steve

Steve Haas
Snoqualmie, WA



Comments?

Blair


Blair
 

thanks, Steve, for the sanity check.  That's what I thought, but...  So the only reason I might run separate runs is if I want to provide the flexibility to split the yard across two boosters at some point in the future.

I'll probably wire 6 and 6, then, just in case.

Blair

On 6/21/2021 3:38 PM, Steve Haas wrote:
I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . . However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks? I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed? I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.

If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.

I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.

Best regards,

Steve

Steve Haas
Snoqualmie, WA


Comments?

Blair












Scott H. Haycock
 

One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:


I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . . However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks? I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed? I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.

If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.

I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.

Best regards,

Steve

Steve Haas
Snoqualmie, WA



Comments?

Blair










Blair
 

that was covered by the fact that I'm wiring one rail individually, and switching them when selected.  (i.e. when a turnout is aligned for a track, at either end, the track is energized).

On 6/21/2021 3:59 PM, Scott H. Haycock wrote:
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:


I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . . However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks? I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed? I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.

If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.

I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.

Best regards,

Steve

Steve Haas
Snoqualmie, WA


Comments?

Blair












george hohon3
 

I did this exact thing for the exactly the same reason.  In doing so, it prevents the command station from seeing a surge in voltage and therefore, a total power shut down.

To make the routing of power to a specific track as simple as possible, I use two, 12-position rotary switches, skipping every other contact so I am never more than one click away from shutting off the power to that track (each rotary switch controls the power to 6 individual tracks).  I also placed a power reading LED neatly between the ties to confirm a "visual" when power was on.  But this feature is no longer needed because all 12 tracks hold "favorite" trains with lighted interiors, along with their startup of sound.  You immediately know what track you've selected . . . .

George
in SLO


From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Scott H. Haycock <shhaycock@...>
Sent: Monday, June 21, 2021 12:59 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Staging yard wiring question
 
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

> On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:
>

> >>>>> I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . .   However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
>
> Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.
>
> If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.
>
> I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Steve
>
> Steve Haas
> Snoqualmie, WA

>
>
> Comments?
>
> Blair
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>






Blair
 

Why is it that no one reads the original post any more?  As I said, there is a relay, and a block detector, for one rail of each track.  My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.

Blair


On 6/21/2021 4:57 PM, george hohon3 wrote:

I did this exact thing for the exactly the same reason.  In doing so, it prevents the command station from seeing a surge in voltage and therefore, a total power shut down.

To make the routing of power to a specific track as simple as possible, I use two, 12-position rotary switches, skipping every other contact so I am never more than one click away from shutting off the power to that track (each rotary switch controls the power to 6 individual tracks).  I also placed a power reading LED neatly between the ties to confirm a "visual" when power was on.  But this feature is no longer needed because all 12 tracks hold "favorite" trains with lighted interiors, along with their startup of sound.  You immediately know what track you've selected . . . .

George
in SLO


From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Scott H. Haycock <shhaycock@...>
Sent: Monday, June 21, 2021 12:59 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Staging yard wiring question
 
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

> On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:
>

> >>>>> I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . .   However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
>
> Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.
>
> If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.
>
> I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Steve
>
> Steve Haas
> Snoqualmie, WA

>
>
> Comments?
>
> Blair
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>






emrldsky
 

On 6/21/2021 2:22 PM, Blair wrote:
My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.
Hi Blair,
In my opinion, there can never be too many feeders to any rail. It may seem like a lot more work on paper, but I have found, once you get the rhythm going, it is no big deal. On my layout I have a minimum, of one feeder per section, regardless of size, and one feeder every two feet, for both rails.

Peace,
Mike G.


Scott H. Haycock
 

Sorry.
 
  You said bus wire when I think you mean feeder wire, thus the confusion. 

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantm
ent

On 06/21/2021 3:22 PM Blair <smithbr@...> wrote:
 
 

Why is it that no one reads the original post any more?  As I said, there is a relay, and a block detector, for one rail of each track.  My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.

Blair

 

On 6/21/2021 4:57 PM, george hohon3 wrote:
I did this exact thing for the exactly the same reason.  In doing so, it prevents the command station from seeing a surge in voltage and therefore, a total power shut down.
 
To make the routing of power to a specific track as simple as possible, I use two, 12-position rotary switches, skipping every other contact so I am never more than one click away from shutting off the power to that track (each rotary switch controls the power to 6 individual tracks).  I also placed a power reading LED neatly between the ties to confirm a "visual" when power was on.  But this feature is no longer needed because all 12 tracks hold "favorite" trains with lighted interiors, along with their startup of sound.  You immediately know what track you've selected . . . .
 
George
in SLO
 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Scott H. Haycock <shhaycock@...>
Sent: Monday, June 21, 2021 12:59 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Staging yard wiring question
 
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

> On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:
>

> >>>>> I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . .   However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
>
> Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.
>
> If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.
>
> I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Steve
>
> Steve Haas
> Snoqualmie, WA

>
>
> Comments?
>
> Blair
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>






Blair
 

Scott

For me, a bus(or sub-bus) connects many feeder wires as one electrical component; feeder wires run from the bus to individual rail segments.  Feeders always have one end attached to a rail.  In this implementation, a main bus feeds the sub-busses, one for each track in the yard; each one is relay-switched, and current-detected for occupancy.  The other rail in each track segment is returned to the main bus uninterrupted.

If my sub-bus is your feeder, what do you call the wire running from the feeder to the rail?  I've heard the term 'dropper' used, but always thought that was just another term for 'feeder'.

Blair

On 6/21/2021 6:00 PM, Scott H. Haycock wrote:

Sorry.
 
  You said bus wire when I think you mean feeder wire, thus the confusion. 

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantm
ent

On 06/21/2021 3:22 PM Blair <smithbr@...> wrote:
 
 

Why is it that no one reads the original post any more?  As I said, there is a relay, and a block detector, for one rail of each track.  My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.

Blair

 

On 6/21/2021 4:57 PM, george hohon3 wrote:
I did this exact thing for the exactly the same reason.  In doing so, it prevents the command station from seeing a surge in voltage and therefore, a total power shut down.
 
To make the routing of power to a specific track as simple as possible, I use two, 12-position rotary switches, skipping every other contact so I am never more than one click away from shutting off the power to that track (each rotary switch controls the power to 6 individual tracks).  I also placed a power reading LED neatly between the ties to confirm a "visual" when power was on.  But this feature is no longer needed because all 12 tracks hold "favorite" trains with lighted interiors, along with their startup of sound.  You immediately know what track you've selected . . . .
 
George
in SLO
 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Scott H. Haycock <shhaycock@...>
Sent: Monday, June 21, 2021 12:59 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Staging yard wiring question
 
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

> On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:
>

> >>>>> I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . .   However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
>
> Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.
>
> If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.
>
> I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Steve
>
> Steve Haas
> Snoqualmie, WA

>
>
> Comments?
>
> Blair
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>






Scott H. Haycock
 

Hi Blair,
 
I've never heard the term sub-bus, but it's been awhile since I did any track wiring. In my understanding, a dropper connects to the rail.  If your bus is close enough, you can connect it directly. But if the bus is further away, or you want to put a on/off switch, etc. between the track and bus, connect an appropriately larger wire between the dropper and the bus. To me, this is a feeder.
 
Now that I get what your trying to do, it seems like it will work. 
 

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantm
ent

On 06/21/2021 6:50 PM Blair <smithbr@...> wrote:
 
 

Scott

For me, a bus(or sub-bus) connects many feeder wires as one electrical component; feeder wires run from the bus to individual rail segments.  Feeders always have one end attached to a rail.  In this implementation, a main bus feeds the sub-busses, one for each track in the yard; each one is relay-switched, and current-detected for occupancy.  The other rail in each track segment is returned to the main bus uninterrupted.

If my sub-bus is your feeder, what do you call the wire running from the feeder to the rail?  I've heard the term 'dropper' used, but always thought that was just another term for 'feeder'.

Blair

On 6/21/2021 6:00 PM, Scott H. Haycock wrote:
Sorry.
 
  You said bus wire when I think you mean feeder wire, thus the confusion. 

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantm
ent

On 06/21/2021 3:22 PM Blair <smithbr@...> wrote:
 
 

Why is it that no one reads the original post any more?  As I said, there is a relay, and a block detector, for one rail of each track.  My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.

Blair

 

On 6/21/2021 4:57 PM, george hohon3 wrote:
I did this exact thing for the exactly the same reason.  In doing so, it prevents the command station from seeing a surge in voltage and therefore, a total power shut down.
 
To make the routing of power to a specific track as simple as possible, I use two, 12-position rotary switches, skipping every other contact so I am never more than one click away from shutting off the power to that track (each rotary switch controls the power to 6 individual tracks).  I also placed a power reading LED neatly between the ties to confirm a "visual" when power was on.  But this feature is no longer needed because all 12 tracks hold "favorite" trains with lighted interiors, along with their startup of sound.  You immediately know what track you've selected . . . .
 
George
in SLO
 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> on behalf of Scott H. Haycock <shhaycock@...>
Sent: Monday, June 21, 2021 12:59 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Staging yard wiring question
 
One reason to have each track separately wired would be to prevent all the sound equipped engines in the yard from starting up at the same time when you power up!

Scott Haycock
Modeling Tarheel country in the Land of Enchantment

> On 06/21/2021 1:38 PM Steve Haas <goatfisher2@...> wrote:
>

> >>>>> I have a 12-track staging yard. . . . . . . .   However, respecting the second bus wire for each track back rail, is there anything that prevents that wire being common to several/all of the tracks?  I.e. could I wire, in the extreme, all 12 back rails to one common bus feed?  I had already assumed I'd run a wire for each track, but it occurs to me that that may be excessive. <<<<
>
> Nothing at all to prevent you from using a "common" bus for the other rail on each of those tracks.
>
> If you think about it, whether you install a second "block" bus for that other rail or tie them all together to a single block bus for the yard the logical flow of electricity is the same.
>
> I'd run that common "block" bus down the middle of the yard, six tracks on one side, six tracks on the other - will reduce the overall length of the individual track feeders.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Steve
>
> Steve Haas
> Snoqualmie, WA

>
>
> Comments?
>
> Blair
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>






Blair
 

Agreed, more feeders are better, in fact, I'm wiring a feeder per rail per section of flex.  But it's not what I was asking.  What I was asking about is:

For multiple parallel tracks in a yard, fed from the same booster, with one rail of each track wired through detection and an on/off switching by relay, is there any gotcha about wiring the SECOND rail in common on all the tracks.

I have 12 tracks in a 30' long staging yard, and there is significant time and wiring savings if I wire all 12 tracks, left hand rail, together to one bus wire (yes, that would be about 10 feeders/track * 12 tracks, or 120 feeders on that one wire) rather than having a second bus wire for EACH track.  This, however, means the feeders for the common rails would be much longer.

But, several messages ago, I indicated that I'd made a decision. Since the yard is divided, 6 tracks eastbound, 6 tracks westbound, I'll do a common rail for each half of the yard, in case I want to separate eastbound and westbound yards to separate boosters.  I may yet make that 4 bus wires, 3 tracks each, to keep the feeder lengths down.  We'll see.

The whole yard comprises >200 feeders for track segments plus 22 feeders at each end from the turnouts.  12 bus wires for the individual rails, 2 or 4 for the common rails, and 2 bus wires for each pinwheel ladder.  So I'll be wiring for a while.  Then, I'll do it all over again on the upper yard.  Glad I like solder smoke in the eyes!

Case closed.

Blair

On 2021-06-21 17:55, emrldsky wrote:
On 6/21/2021 2:22 PM, Blair wrote:
My question was focused on the best wiring of the second, common, rail.
Hi Blair,
In my opinion, there can never be too many feeders to any rail. It may seem like a lot more work on paper, but I have found, once you get the rhythm going, it is no big deal. On my layout I have a minimum, of one feeder per section, regardless of size, and one feeder every two feet, for both rails.

Peace,
Mike G.






Don Vollrath
 

Blair, as described there is no gotcha about wiring the SECOND rail in common on all the tracks.

DonV 


Tim
 

I had a 12 track staging yard on my last layout. I ran a 12 AWG (white) wire along each track that was routed through the detector with feeders on every rail. The other wire (black) I had a wire every 3-4 tracks just to keep the length of the feeders reasonable. It worked fine with no problems.

I've got a picture of this at home that I can upload if anybody wants me to.

Tim Rumph
Lancaster, SC


JoAnn Donaldson
 

I have two staging tracks on my layout. Both are in their own Power Zones. This so that if I cause a short, it doesn't shutdown the rest of the layout.

JoAnn Donaldson

On Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 10:04:33 AM CDT, Tim <tarumph@...> wrote:


I had a 12 track staging yard on my last layout. I ran a 12 AWG (white) wire along each track that was routed through the detector with feeders on every rail. The other wire (black) I had a wire every 3-4 tracks just to keep the length of the feeders reasonable. It worked fine with no problems.

I've got a picture of this at home that I can upload if anybody wants me to.

Tim Rumph
Lancaster, SC


Don Weigt
 

One consideration about one common rail connection to all those tracks is, how many trains might be moving on them at once. That single common wire is going to be carrying the sum of all motor, lighting, and sound system currents. Make certain it's heavy enough to handle those amperes with no more than a few tenths of a volt drop. Especially if the run to the booster is very long, you might want 12, 10, or even heavier gauge AWG wire (other countries, appropriate gauges per whatever local standard specifications are.)

You want train speeds and light brightnesses to be unaffected by others starting or stopping, and sound equipped locos can draw a lot of current while charging up their onboard capacitors.

Don Weigt
Connecticut



--
Don Weigt
Connecticut


Blair
 

As I said in my original messages, the 12 tracks are switched.  The expectation is that tracks which are not 'routed' via the switch ladder will not be powered.  That being said, I have a request already for an override to allow powering a consist that isn't 'selected' (to verify consist status while trains are coming and going from the yards), so your point is valid.  I'm also pondering whether we may split the yards across more than two circuit breakers, which again would require more separate bus wires for both rails - likely 4 common wires for the 12 tracks.  The common busses coming from the booster will be 12 ga, fanning to 14 ga for the individual tracks; all feeders are 6" 22 ga.

I'm not too worried about speed and light  brightness, as this is staging.  I get it fully for yards on-layout.

Oh well.  I have until Monday before I have to decide.  One more construction night tomorrow, then a construction day Saturday, then I get to wire it.  Thanks for the inputs, everyone.

Blair

On 6/23/2021 5:42 PM, Don Weigt wrote:

One consideration about one common rail connection to all those tracks is, how many trains might be moving on them at once. That single common wire is going to be carrying the sum of all motor, lighting, and sound system currents. Make certain it's heavy enough to handle those amperes with no more than a few tenths of a volt drop. Especially if the run to the booster is very long, you might want 12, 10, or even heavier gauge AWG wire (other countries, appropriate gauges per whatever local standard specifications are.)

You want train speeds and light brightnesses to be unaffected by others starting or stopping, and sound equipped locos can draw a lot of current while charging up their onboard capacitors.

Don Weigt
Connecticut



--
Don Weigt
Connecticut