Topics

Signal Blocks


Perry A Pollino
 

I have a N scale DCC layout. I have power districts controlled by DCC specialties circuit breakers.
I am thinking about adding signaling. At first I considered using IR. Primarily because my power districts are not lined up with what I would like for signal blocks.
I started to look at Atlas signal system. 
My question: Can I wire signal blocks with power detection separate from my power districts?
 How would I separate the two so as not to cause a short. 
Perry


wirefordcc
 

Hi Perry,

I'm not sure I understand what you are proposing.  

For each section of track that you want to block detect, you would run that bus wire through a block detector like the NCE BD20.  That same section of track would need insulated joiners or gaps in the rail that has the block detector.  Since the layout already exists, you would cut gaps.

You can still use your circuit breakers.  The circuit breaker would come before your block detector.  Your circuit breaker can provide power for multiple blocks that are being detected.  

You cannot put your circuit breakers after the BD20's.  The little amount of power drawn by the circuit breaker would make it look like the block is occupied.  

Allan Gartner
Wiring for DCC


Perry A Pollino
 

All of my Circuit breakers are centrally located. a buss line runs from each circuit breaker/AR.
I have a main line, and a secondary line on the same circuit breaker. I would want to put 2 blocks for detection within this power district. Can I do that? Or do I have to re do the power district to match the signal block. 
I had originally planned to use IR or photo detection but discovered I can only set timers for occupancy. 
Thanks you for you advice in advance.




On Sunday, September 13, 2020, 08:09:54 AM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Hi Perry,

I'm not sure I understand what you are proposing.  

For each section of track that you want to block detect, you would run that bus wire through a block detector like the NCE BD20.  That same section of track would need insulated joiners or gaps in the rail that has the block detector.  Since the layout already exists, you would cut gaps.

You can still use your circuit breakers.  The circuit breaker would come before your block detector.  Your circuit breaker can provide power for multiple blocks that are being detected.  

You cannot put your circuit breakers after the BD20's.  The little amount of power drawn by the circuit breaker would make it look like the block is occupied.  

Allan Gartner
Wiring for DCC


wirefordcc
 

Hi Perry,

You can have multiple block detectors after each of your electronic circuit breakers.  I am doing this very thing on my railroad.  Your power district does not need to match your signal block.  That would be expensive!

Just don't try to have several power districts going through a particular block detector.

Allan


Perry A Pollino
 

I am not quite wrapping my head around how to create a block within a power district. 
I have a drop on every section of track that is attached to my buss. I did use Vampire connectors for this.  Each power district has a separate buss.
When I gap my rail for a block. do I also need to cut my buss?
sure wish I was not so isolated from other model railroaders. 
I learn best when i can put my eyeball on things.
Perry

On Sunday, September 13, 2020, 12:26:25 PM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Hi Perry,

You can have multiple block detectors after each of your electronic circuit breakers.  I am doing this very thing on my railroad.  Your power district does not need to match your signal block.  That would be expensive!

Just don't try to have several power districts going through a particular block detector.

Allan


wirefordcc
 

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC


Bill Wilken
 

Alan,

Your proposed piece on signal block wiring diagrams would be very helpful.  It's taken me a lot of digging to find documentation of this sort.   Let me suggest that you take particular care when referring to "the bus."  Below, you advise that "when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at the same point."  But which bus?  The one for track power?  The signal bus?   While I know which bus you're referring to, the answer may not be obvious to the uninitiated.  

In the documentation you propose, it also would be helpful to offer tips on wiring issues that might not come readily to mind to the newcomer, particuarly changes that often must be made in existing layouts wiring, e.g. track power feeds.    Similarly, it would be great if you could add some very practical tips and tricks, e.g. showing how to use the same signal bus for parallel tracks.  And, then, there's the matter of integrating signaling with turnouts or interlockings, something that I'm currently wrestling with.

Bill




On Sun, 2020-09-13 at 10:53 -0700, wirefordcc wrote:

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC


Steve Haas
 

Here’s a link to the Writing for DCC website: WWW.wiringfordcc.com

 

Part 2 on Track Wiring has the following section: http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track_2.htm has a section that addresses what you want to accomplish there.

 

Scroll down to: Block Wiring for Large Layouts (V2.0)

 

Best regards,

 

Steve

 

Steve Haas

Snoqualmie, WA

 


wirefordcc
 

Thanks Bill,

 

I’ll add this to my list of things I would like to include when I get to writing this up.

 

Allan

 

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Wilken
Sent: Sunday, September 13, 2020 5:09 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Signal Blocks

 

Alan,

 

Your proposed piece on signal block wiring diagrams would be very helpful.  It's taken me a lot of digging to find documentation of this sort.   Let me suggest that you take particular care when referring to "the bus."  Below, you advise that "when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at the same point."  But which bus?  The one for track power?  The signal bus?   While I know which bus you're referring to, the answer may not be obvious to the uninitiated.  

 

In the documentation you propose, it also would be helpful to offer tips on wiring issues that might not come readily to mind to the newcomer, particuarly changes that often must be made in existing layouts wiring, e.g. track power feeds.    Similarly, it would be great if you could add some very practical tips and tricks, e.g. showing how to use the same signal bus for parallel tracks.  And, then, there's the matter of integrating signaling with turnouts or interlockings, something that I'm currently wrestling with.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

On Sun, 2020-09-13 at 10:53 -0700, wirefordcc wrote:

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC


Perry A Pollino
 

Bill and Allan.
 
Maybe I missed something.  Can I run a separate signal bus that a block detector will see? And not have to cut my power buss.



On Monday, September 14, 2020, 09:47:04 AM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Thanks Bill,

 

I’ll add this to my list of things I would like to include when I get to writing this up.

 

Allan

 

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Wilken
Sent: Sunday, September 13, 2020 5:09 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Signal Blocks

 

Alan,

 

Your proposed piece on signal block wiring diagrams would be very helpful.  It's taken me a lot of digging to find documentation of this sort.   Let me suggest that you take particular care when referring to "the bus."  Below, you advise that "when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at the same point."  But which bus?  The one for track power?  The signal bus?   While I know which bus you're referring to, the answer may not be obvious to the uninitiated.  

 

In the documentation you propose, it also would be helpful to offer tips on wiring issues that might not come readily to mind to the newcomer, particuarly changes that often must be made in existing layouts wiring, e.g. track power feeds.    Similarly, it would be great if you could add some very practical tips and tricks, e.g. showing how to use the same signal bus for parallel tracks.  And, then, there's the matter of integrating signaling with turnouts or interlockings, something that I'm currently wrestling with.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

On Sun, 2020-09-13 at 10:53 -0700, wirefordcc wrote:

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC


Perry A Pollino
 

Please disregard my last post. 
I just found you tube video from an Aussie modeler and Now I can see it. 
Perry

On Monday, September 14, 2020, 10:40:40 AM CDT, Perry A Pollino <texasperry@...> wrote:


Bill and Allan.
 
Maybe I missed something.  Can I run a separate signal bus that a block detector will see? And not have to cut my power buss.



On Monday, September 14, 2020, 09:47:04 AM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Thanks Bill,

 

I’ll add this to my list of things I would like to include when I get to writing this up.

 

Allan

 

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Wilken
Sent: Sunday, September 13, 2020 5:09 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Signal Blocks

 

Alan,

 

Your proposed piece on signal block wiring diagrams would be very helpful.  It's taken me a lot of digging to find documentation of this sort.   Let me suggest that you take particular care when referring to "the bus."  Below, you advise that "when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at the same point."  But which bus?  The one for track power?  The signal bus?   While I know which bus you're referring to, the answer may not be obvious to the uninitiated.  

 

In the documentation you propose, it also would be helpful to offer tips on wiring issues that might not come readily to mind to the newcomer, particuarly changes that often must be made in existing layouts wiring, e.g. track power feeds.    Similarly, it would be great if you could add some very practical tips and tricks, e.g. showing how to use the same signal bus for parallel tracks.  And, then, there's the matter of integrating signaling with turnouts or interlockings, something that I'm currently wrestling with.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

On Sun, 2020-09-13 at 10:53 -0700, wirefordcc wrote:

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC


wirefordcc
 

Hi Perry,

You can tap off your power bus and run the tapped wire through your block detector.  After coming out of your block detector you would create your signal bus.

Allan


Paul R Greenwald
 

Perry-

A link to that you tube video?

Thank you,

Paul R Greenwald 
PRRT&HS 1802
NMRA 129229 


Perry A Pollino
 

Link Sent


On Monday, September 14, 2020, 11:28:43 AM CDT, Paul R Greenwald <pennsyrrfan4905@...> wrote:


Perry-

A link to that you tube video?

Thank you,

Paul R Greenwald 
PRRT&HS 1802
NMRA 129229 


Perry A Pollino
 

Allan,
Thanks much. 
Now that I put my eyeballs on a diagram via a YouTube video, it is much clearer to me.
I need to create a test track for myself and I will be good once I wire up my test track and get hands on.
My style of learning as I was told is "Concrete" So I learn best when I see and do, over reading and trying to apply what I read. If that makes any sense. I need pictures. I have always struggled with reading comprehension. Turns out I was a slow reader because my mind had to draw a mental picture of everything I was reading. 
I learned this in my 30's. I took a career course that included a battery of tests. 
I have not been tested for Dyslexia. Too old to care about it now but back then they suggested I get tested. 
Now if I  had known this in high school, I would probably be in a different place today. I choose school of hard knock over college or trade school because of my struggles in high school.
I work for a school now as a facilities manager, I see how schools now make "accommodations" in my day you were branded and hung out to dry. 
OK getting off my Soap Box.
So I have found your site very useful over the years. 
Thanks much for what you do.
Perry


On Monday, September 14, 2020, 11:27:30 AM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Hi Perry,

You can tap off your power bus and run the tapped wire through your block detector.  After coming out of your block detector you would create your signal bus.

Allan


thomasmclae
 

Here is an easy way to think about signal blocks with occupancy detectors:

A Block is whatever track is fed through a block detector. (Or photocell or IR detector)
You can have many buses, circuit breakers or wiring districts, but that is irrelevant. What counts is the detectors.

There can be one section of track fed through the occupancy detector, or several track segments. (If multiple, should be contiguous), Both count as ONE signal block.
You count blocks by detectors, not wiring districts.

If you start from scratch with a new layout, this is easy to plan.
Retrofitting to DC layout wired 30 years ago, might require more work.

Thomas
DeSoto, TX


pekka_groups
 

Perry,

Look at the last image at:

    http://www.sumidacrossing.org/LayoutControl/DCC/DCCCircuitBreakers/

The green boxes are your old circuit breakers. The blue dots are your new train detectors for signaling.

pekka

[not connected to sumidacrossing.org, just found a convenient image by Googling!]

On 2020-09-14 18:40, Perry A Pollino wrote:
Bill and Allan.
 
Maybe I missed something.  Can I run a separate signal bus that a block detector will see? And not have to cut my power buss.



On Monday, September 14, 2020, 09:47:04 AM CDT, wirefordcc <bigboy@...> wrote:


Thanks Bill,

 

I’ll add this to my list of things I would like to include when I get to writing this up.

 

Allan

 

 

From: w4dccqa@groups.io <w4dccqa@groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Wilken
Sent: Sunday, September 13, 2020 5:09 PM
To: w4dccqa@groups.io
Subject: Re: [w4dccqa] Signal Blocks

 

Alan,

 

Your proposed piece on signal block wiring diagrams would be very helpful.  It's taken me a lot of digging to find documentation of this sort.   Let me suggest that you take particular care when referring to "the bus."  Below, you advise that "when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at the same point."  But which bus?  The one for track power?  The signal bus?   While I know which bus you're referring to, the answer may not be obvious to the uninitiated.  

 

In the documentation you propose, it also would be helpful to offer tips on wiring issues that might not come readily to mind to the newcomer, particuarly changes that often must be made in existing layouts wiring, e.g. track power feeds.    Similarly, it would be great if you could add some very practical tips and tricks, e.g. showing how to use the same signal bus for parallel tracks.  And, then, there's the matter of integrating signaling with turnouts or interlockings, something that I'm currently wrestling with.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

On Sun, 2020-09-13 at 10:53 -0700, wirefordcc wrote:

Hi Perry,

 

Yes, when you gap your track for your block, you will need to cut your bus at that same point. 

 

Let’s say you have two signal blocks that you want to make within a particular power district.  Gap your track and cut your bus at the point where you want to create two signal blocks. 

 

When you do this, you will likely have one section of track still connected to your electronic circuit breaker.  Snake this bus wire through the block detector.  You should now have one detected block.

 

For the section you cut and is now dead, Add some wire to this isolated section of bus and snake it through a block detector and attach the end of the new wire to the output of your electronic circuit breaker.  You should now have two wires attached to the output of your electronic circuit breaker and two detected blocks.

 

I want to write some more on block detection in the future.  I’ll need to create some diagrams, too.  I’ll keep your email around and may be back in touch when I get to doing this.

 

Allan Gartner

Wiring for DCC