Topics

Programming track wiring


Nick Ostrosky
 

Looking over the newly posted material on this topic I'm feeling a little dense.  I currently have a Powercab with the NCE auto switch for a separate programming track I installed directly under my layout.  Always a pain to move a loco from the main to programming and back again to test my results, especially when I'm having to tweak things several times to get it where I want it.  But the wiring in these diagrams with the auto switch has always seemed overly complicated to me - adding DPDT switches, etc.

My question: would this diagram also work so I could simply create an isolated section on my main for programming, or would I be at risk of something (catastrophic?) happening to any or all of my equipment?  The auto switch should permit only one type of power going out at a time, so what are all the DPDT switches doing that the auto switch is not?

Thanks!

Nick


wirefordcc
 

Hi Nick,

I looked at your diagram.  You cannot have the programming track wired to your layout mains.  At a minimum, that shorts the two together.  It might even damage some of your equipment.

Are you using programming on the main whenever you can?  This is especially handy when you are tweaking things like volume, selecting different sounds, momentum, and the like.

I gather you are using the NCE PowerCab with the AutoSwitch.  The simplest thing you need is the DPDT throw switch shown on my website at:  http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track_2.htm#d2.  The very first diagram I have is under "Work Bench Programming Track."  On my last layout, this was the arrangement I used.  I just had six feet of track on my work bench for when programming on the main wasn't appropriate.  When programming on the main works, as it does on most locomotives today, I just programmed things on my layout.

If you want a programming section on your layout, I highly recommend an arrangement like I show on my website under "Layout Programming Track with Deadzone."  This prevents you from inadvertently crossing from the mains to the programming track.  If you are using a PowerCab with AutoSwitch, Jim Exler recently contributed some diagrams showing the wiring up of these NCE products as well as layouts using the NCE SB5.  These arrangements help prevent you from damaging things and the need to send off for repair.  The switches alone are cheaper than the cost of shipping and definitely less than the cost of repair.

Allan Gartner
Wiring for DCC


whmvd
 

Hi Nick,

There is a much easier option, and that is: do ONLY the address programming on the programming track. Then, put your engine on the main, use programming on the main and have instant gratification while leaving your wiring untouched!

Wouter


On Sat, 18 Jul 2020 at 15:37, Nick Ostrosky <nick79ostr@...> wrote:
Looking over the newly posted material on this topic I'm feeling a little dense.  I currently have a Powercab with the NCE auto switch for a separate programming track I installed directly under my layout.  Always a pain to move a loco from the main to programming and back again to test my results, especially when I'm having to tweak things several times to get it where I want it.  But the wiring in these diagrams with the auto switch has always seemed overly complicated to me - adding DPDT switches, etc.

My question: would this diagram also work so I could simply create an isolated section on my main for programming, or would I be at risk of something (catastrophic?) happening to any or all of my equipment?  The auto switch should permit only one type of power going out at a time, so what are all the DPDT switches doing that the auto switch is not?

Thanks!

Nick


Carl
 

Hi Gang:

When I was building Jim's new work bench, ( https://www.instructables.com/id/Jims-Model-Railroad-Work-Bench/ ) I tried to talk him into a trestle over his bench. My thought was, he could use it as a programming track and also a work track for adjustments. I would leave a gap between the rails so you could reach the bottom of the locomotives with screwdrivers, etc. When he was done, he could run the loco back onto the layout without touching it. I do like the isolation section. Perhaps also make the toggles "center off".

Carl.

On 7/18/2020 10:53 AM, whmvd wrote:
Hi Nick,

There is a much easier option, and that is: do ONLY the address programming on the programming track. Then, put your engine on the main, use programming on the main and have instant gratification while leaving your wiring untouched!

Wouter

On Sat, 18 Jul 2020 at 15:37, Nick Ostrosky <nick79ostr@...> wrote:
Looking over the newly posted material on this topic I'm feeling a little dense.  I currently have a Powercab with the NCE auto switch for a separate programming track I installed directly under my layout.  Always a pain to move a loco from the main to programming and back again to test my results, especially when I'm having to tweak things several times to get it where I want it.  But the wiring in these diagrams with the auto switch has always seemed overly complicated to me - adding DPDT switches, etc.

My question: would this diagram also work so I could simply create an isolated section on my main for programming, or would I be at risk of something (catastrophic?) happening to any or all of my equipment?  The auto switch should permit only one type of power going out at a time, so what are all the DPDT switches doing that the auto switch is not?

Thanks!

Nick


Nick Ostrosky
 

Thank you for all your responses on this.  Someone did point out quickly what I was too dense to see - the obvious!  I typically do my programming with JMRI, hence the desire to “write” changes and once the Auto SW goes back to “main” power test those changes without having to do anything else, but I see why that’s a problem.  I will look further into programming on the main, but was under the impression (from the JMRI group) that this wasn’t always optimal.  I like the trestle idea but in my circumstance it wouldn’t be practical, though it is an idea to file away for later.

 

I will also pull the photo from the library so no one stumbles across it and think it’s one way to do things.

 

Thanks!

 

Nick