Topics

DCC Meters

Mike Smeltzer
 

Good afternoon,

I was wondering if there was a way to adapt or modify this type of meter to use with DCC?  I know there is the DCC Specialties  RRamp Meter out there, but wondering if there was a way to use something like this instead?  This photo was taken off a listing on Amazon.

Thank you...

MIke Smeltzer


Paul O
 

Mike, you sure didn’t give us much to go on!

Amazon link; product name, model # …etc.

 

Paul O

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io [mailto:w4dccqa@groups.io] On Behalf Of Mike Smeltzer via Groups.Io
Sent: Tuesday, April 16, 2019 1:10 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] DCC Meters

 

Good afternoon,

I was wondering if there was a way to adapt or modify this type of meter to use with DCC?  I know there is the DCC Specialties  RRamp Meter out there, but wondering if there was a way to use something like this instead?  This photo was taken off a listing on Amazon.

Thank you...

Mike Smeltzer



Virus-free. www.avg.com

Mike Smeltzer
 

Paul,

Sorry about no link.  I wasn't sure if posting commercial listings was acceptable.  Especially this being my first post.

With that said.   The link is 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075V2WTT8/?coliid=I13ITLCIZIBO9O&colid=27J4DG3BRM1CM&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Mike Smeltzer

Charles Brumbelow
 

Am I correct that the electricity on the track in a DCC only layout is actually AC? If so you would need an AC meter. I believe measuring amperage requires a shunt. In some situations the shunt is internal and not noticed. In others it is external. 

Charles




On Tuesday, April 16, 2019, 12:10 PM, Mike Smeltzer via Groups.Io <SooBaldwin@...> wrote:

Good afternoon,

I was wondering if there was a way to adapt or modify this type of meter to use with DCC?  I know there is the DCC Specialties  RRamp Meter out there, but wondering if there was a way to use something like this instead?  This photo was taken off a listing on Amazon.

Thank you...

MIke Smeltzer


George Paroubek
 

Opps… The link may be helpful...

http://www.circuitous.ca/DCCammeter10.html

George Paroubek
 

I use this circuit board to measure current and correct for the non-sinusoid DCC waveform.  You need to buy a meter with matching specs as indicated on the website.

Hope this helps,
George Paroubek

Carl
 

Hi Mike:

DCC is an AC, but a square wave. An AC volt meter will be a bit off of the true DCC voltage. But it will still show high and low values, so should still be helpful for trouble shooting.

An AC volt meter is just a DC meter with a diode bridge.

Carl.

On 4/16/2019 5:25 PM, Paul O wrote:

Mike, you sure didn’t give us much to go on!

Amazon link; product name, model # …etc.

 

Paul O

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io [mailto:w4dccqa@groups.io] On Behalf Of Mike Smeltzer via Groups.Io
Sent: Tuesday, April 16, 2019 1:10 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: [w4dccqa] DCC Meters

 

Good afternoon,

I was wondering if there was a way to adapt or modify this type of meter to use with DCC?  I know there is the DCC Specialties  RRamp Meter out there, but wondering if there was a way to use something like this instead?  This photo was taken off a listing on Amazon.

Thank you...

Mike Smeltzer



Virus-free. www.avg.com

Richard Gagnon
 

I have used that circuit with with Harbor Freight meters. Works very well for DCC current.
My Harbor Freight meters read about 13.6 VAC on my NCE Power Cab.




On Tuesday, April 16, 2019, 6:42 PM, George Paroubek <george.par@...> wrote:

Opps… The link may be helpful...

http://www.circuitous.ca/DCCammeter10.html

Richard Gagnon
 


Scroll down a little to low tech meters.

Rich

Mike Smeltzer
 

Thank you all for the information on the meters.  I will order one of the lower cost meters and the adapter board and see how they work.

Thanks again...

Mike Smeltzer

PennsyNut
 

Oh my gosh! If it's "low cost", why not go to Harbor Freight. They have meters for free with a purchase of something. The free meters do what we need. Not specific to DCC, but we can utilize them to read DC volts and AC volts. And the main thing is consistency. I hook the command station to the middle of the layout and measure both AC and DC voltage at each end. And if the readings are equal at each end, you have consistency. And you can also measure continuity of current, as well as the resistance. What you sacrifice is the accuracy of the more expensive meters. If you want more, you pay more. But what's not to like about free? I have 3 of them. And even though they may not read all the same, it's that consistency that counts. IMHO.
Morgan Bilbo, new to DCC

Jay
 

A regular VOM will not give an accurate reading.
With a VOM, you have to use the AC setting.
The DCC signal is read as AC by the meter.
It is an approximation that can be as far as 5v off, depending on the quality of the VOM
Another method is needed to get the correct voltage, hence this thread.

Jay

Charles Brumbelow
 

This article may be relevant...


Charles





On Saturday, April 27, 2019, 11:52 AM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

A regular VOM will not give an accurate reading.
With a VOM, you have to use the AC setting.
The DCC signal is read as AC by the meter.
It is an approximation that can be as far as 5v off, depending on the quality of the VOM
Another method is needed to get the correct voltage, hence this thread.

Jay

Richard Gagnon
 

It has never been five volts off with my four meters.

Rich




On Saturday, April 27, 2019, 12:52 PM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

A regular VOM will not give an accurate reading.
With a VOM, you have to use the AC setting.
The DCC signal is read as AC by the meter.
It is an approximation that can be as far as 5v off, depending on the quality of the VOM
Another method is needed to get the correct voltage, hence this thread.

Jay

Jay
 

Rich, I had a cheapie from one of "those stores".
Compared to my DCC RRamMeter it was a full 7v off.
This was a needle type meter also.
It was close in regular voltage testing.

Jay

Jay
 

Hi!
In this article, he is just reading straight DC.
There is no DCC signal involved at that point.

Jay

Richard Gagnon
 

I compared with two Scopes. Did the math to convert P to P to RMS. This is model rail roading not rocket science.
I also have a digital scope that shows RMS also. I rarely mention it because of the naysayers.
Another forum some have simuilar results with the HF meter.
I have worked with different meters for forty years.

Rich




On Saturday, April 27, 2019, 12:52 PM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

A regular VOM will not give an accurate reading.
With a VOM, you have to use the AC setting.
The DCC signal is read as AC by the meter.
It is an approximation that can be as far as 5v off, depending on the quality of the VOM
Another method is needed to get the correct voltage, hence this thread.

Jay

Richard Gagnon
 

I know many say I believe but I have measured.

Rich




On Saturday, April 27, 2019, 1:29 PM, Charles Brumbelow via Groups.Io <mrb37211@...> wrote:

This article may be relevant...


Charles





On Saturday, April 27, 2019, 11:52 AM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

A regular VOM will not give an accurate reading.
With a VOM, you have to use the AC setting.
The DCC signal is read as AC by the meter.
It is an approximation that can be as far as 5v off, depending on the quality of the VOM
Another method is needed to get the correct voltage, hence this thread.

Jay

Jay
 

Hi Rich,
I just tried my 2 digital VOM's.
My Fluke 75 gave me a very close reading of 11.06v on my Z Layout.
The command station is going through a UP6Z.
My Micronta meter gave me 15.7v at the same point.

Jay

Brad Bunnin
 

Fluke meters are reliable, in the statistical sense. They’re also easy to use, versatile, and durable. But they’re not cheap. I was lucky enough to buy a used one from an electronics guy who was retiring. It’s worth keeping a lookout for a used instrument.

Brad 

On Apr 27, 2019, at 4:33 PM, Jay <jayfmn@q.com> wrote:

Hi Rich,
I just tried my 2 digital VOM's.
My Fluke 75 gave me a very close reading of 11.06v on my Z Layout.
The command station is going through a UP6Z.
My Micronta meter gave me 15.7v at the same point.

Jay