Basic analog track control questions. (Aristocraft TE)

Henri

Henri

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The recent thread about the Aristocraft TE got me thinking. I use this system myself, much to my pleasure. I like it a lot. I also have No less than three art5475 conrollers, brand new, never used.

My imagination runs wild but I run into some basic questions I need to know first. Maybe you gentle people can shed some light?

1) how do electric point motors work? Constant power or pulse power? What voltage? (LGB motors)

2) are these three way wired? Or two if pulse based?

3) how can you power a section of track based on point position? Using relais? How?

4) when using a art5475, how can question 3 be achieved?

5) can art5475 be left in the garden or better be mounted in the shed?

6) does the art5475 give a continuous voltage at the switching outputs or pulse voltage when switching?

Oh I feel so dumb!
 
Gizzy

Gizzy

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1) A pulse of DC power.

2) Newer LGB and Piko are 2 wires. By reversing the DC polarity you drive the motor in either direction.

3) I guess via a relay as you mentioned. A DC latching relay?

4) I am not familiar with ART 5475 operation.

5) I would suggest the shed

6) As per 4), but it may be possible to set for either a pulse or continuous voltage

And you certainly aren't dumb....
 
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chris m01

chris m01

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I use a 12volt supply from an old H&M controller to power my 5475 units. When you press button A on the tx a pulse of power is sent down the wires connected to A on the 5475. This will change at least two LGB point motors. When you press A next time a pulse is sent with the power reversed so the points switch back. Every time you press a button on the tx pad the power pulse sent from the 5475 is the opposite to what ir was last time. So if you keep pressing the same button the points will flick back and forth.

This pulse power can also be used to power a latching relay. This is useful in a number of ways as follows:-
1. It can be used to switch power to either side of a loop in line with the points. This is probably the most useful application. Some of mine power two points for a loop and a latching relay and these are fine. I used to use the LGB point mounted switch units for changing power to either side of the loops but found these were not overly reliable. The latches so far have been 100% good. If you do this make sure you buy relays that can cope with 24 volts and say 10 amps at least.
2. The latching relay can also be used as a simple on off switch. Just connect one throw of the relay into the circuit and leave the other throw unconnected. Again the relays have to be able to cope with the power required for your locos; I got mine from RS Components.
3. I bought DPDT (Double Pole Double Throw) latching relays. One pole is used to supply power to the track. The other pole is used to supply power to LED lights that I have fitted to the outside of the shed. These lights indicate whether power is switched on and also which way the points are set. I find this very useful so I can run trains and know where they will go without seeing the points themselves. I can also see when I have forgotten to switch the power off when I go to bed.

I expect there are more uses but this is all I have done so far.

From this I can see that both my main loops have power on and the points are set to the left hand lane. I can also see that the point at the siding is set to the main line rather than the siding. The photo was taken in bright sunlight. The larger lights are bicycle front lights from the pound shop chopped up and rewired to fit my needs.
102148_e2c93b8e0d6a043439e3359b10ea1026.jpg
 
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korm kormsen

korm kormsen

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1) how do electric point motors work? Constant power or pulse power? What voltage? (LGB motors)
- pulse power. old LGB 12V DC min. new LGB 16V AC min.

2) are these three way wired? Or two if pulse based?
- old model LGB with three connectors - DC momentary pulses - new models with "half wave" AC pulses - Ac with diodes used.

3) how can you power a section of track based on point position? Using relais? How?
- if using LGB switchmotors, by using the add-on switches, driven by the switchmotor.

( http://kormsen.info/lgb-manual.pdf chapter "Taking Control")

4) ff --- i don't know.
 
chris m01

chris m01

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1) how do electric point motors work? Constant power or pulse power? What voltage? (LGB motors)
- pulse power. old LGB 12V DC min. new LGB 16V AC min.

2) are these three way wired? Or two if pulse based?
- old model LGB with three connectors - DC momentary pulses - new models with "half wave" AC pulses - Ac with diodes used.

3) how can you power a section of track based on point position? Using relais? How?
- if using LGB switchmotors, by using the add-on switches, driven by the switchmotor.

( http://kormsen.info/lgb-manual.pdf chapter "Taking Control")

4) ff --- i don't know.
The current LGB motors receive dc current at the motor; there are no diodes inside the point motor unit that I have seen.
In my experience those LGB add on switches cause a lot of grief. The point motors are excellent but the add on switches are a constant source of failure. That’s why I now use latching relays.
 
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ntpntpntp

ntpntpntp

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The current LGB motors receive dc current at the motor; there are no diodes inside the point motor .
Correct: the LGB two wire system uses reversible DC. The LGB control box takes AC and uses diodes, but the motors themselves are DC.

The microswitches in the LGB point-motor addon-switches aren't rated for particularly high current, I had a couple fail. I replaced the microswitches.
 
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chris m01

chris m01

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Agreed. Those micro switches aren’t meant to take the amps used by a loco. As well as microswitch problems I also found the soldering on the pcb wasn’t very reliable. Poor show all round.

I have had zero issues with the latching relays from day 1 which is why I recommend this route over the point mounted switches. The relays are also cheaper.
 
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korm kormsen

korm kormsen

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since i changed to the "new" epl switchmotors in the early '80ies, i use the additional switches for supplying current to the track. (as shown/recommended in the LGB-manual)
the only component of the system that i had to replace now and then, are the 1700s reed contacts.

the diodes are not situated in the switch motors, but in the switchboxes and/or reed switches on the other end of the cable.
feeding constant half wave AC to switchmotors produces a loud, alarming buzz.
feeding constant DC to them, fries the switch motors.
 
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Henri

Henri

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Thanks all!! Very informative! Lots of information to chew on.

For powering the point motors: if AC is required, what part is needed to have the diodes ‘in place’?
 
Gizzy

Gizzy

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Thanks all!! Very informative! Lots of information to chew on.

For powering the point motors: if AC is required, what part is needed to have the diodes ‘in place’?
Easier to just use a DC output in the first place, rather than rectify AC with diodes....
 
Henri

Henri

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I guess I have to buy four motors and go from there, wheter they need AC or DC. Going through the 2028 LGB catalog it states 18 V but no indication of AC or DC.

If I want to combine with EPL I think it uses AC only?
 
Gizzy

Gizzy

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26 Oct 2009
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I guess I have to buy four motors and go from there, wheter they need AC or DC. Going through the 2028 LGB catalog it states 18 V but no indication of AC or DC.

If I want to combine with EPL I think it uses AC only?
LGB motors are DC, so you need to drive them with a DC pulse.

The EPL control box is usually supplied with AC, although I believe it will work on DC. It rectifies the AC input for each output to DC.


A cheaper solution to the EPL system can be found here;

Gaugemaster GM511 - SPDT Momentary Contact Toggle Switch G Scale Point Motors

I used these switches with the supplied diodes before I when to the dark side of MTS/DCC. I found an unused one at home last week, which I could post to you if you like Henri?

It's interesting to note that on most exhibition layouts I see in the UK (of all Scales/gauges), that even the DCC ones often have analogue control of points....
 
JimmyB

JimmyB

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This pulse power can also be used to power a latching relay. This is useful in a number of ways as follows:-
1. It can be used to switch power to either side of a loop in line with the points. This is probably the most useful application. Some of mine power two points for a loop and a latching relay and these are fine. I used to use the LGB point mounted switch units for changing power to either side of the loops but found these were not overly reliable. The latches so far have been 100% good. If you do this make sure you buy relays that can cope with 24 volts and say 10 amps at least.
2. The latching relay can also be used as a simple on off switch. Just connect one throw of the relay into the circuit and leave the other throw unconnected. Again the relays have to be able to cope with the power required for your locos; I got mine from RS Components.
3. I bought DPDT (Double Pole Double Throw) latching relays. One pole is used to supply power to the track. The other pole is used to supply power to LED lights that I have fitted to the outside of the shed. These lights indicate whether power is switched on and also which way the points are set. I find this very useful so I can run trains and know where they will go without seeing the points themselves. I can also see when I have forgotten to switch the power off when I go to bed.
Not wanting to high-jack this thread, but I am about add electric points, first thing I notice is that LGB/Piko seem to be interchangeable, and after reading this thread and the manual Korm provided a link for I understand that LGB 12030 will switch track power, but you suggest that the switch is not really up to the job, and suggest a latching relay powered from Art 5475. Please can you supply more details as this far simpler than running power from a switch box.
 
chris m01

chris m01

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The add on switch might be ok but I found them to be less reliable than I would have liked. I still have some in use on another section of track and they haven't given me any grief this year. This is my circuit diagram for the point and power control. The 12 volt feed is dc. I have only shown one circuit but the 55475 has five outputs so can have five circuits like this. A pulse is created by pressing letters A to E on the TE. I have only shown one point but often there are two in each feed. I use the spare connectors on the relay for my light indicators. In the diagram I have assumed that the centre pin is the feed and the circuit will be made to one or other of the outer pins. On some relays the feed pins are the ones closest to the power to the relay - there is usually a diagram or it can be checked with a meter.

102286_a6788b6ce1af8f4f10f7895c89ccf054.jpg
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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There is a camp of people who will say that the half wave "pulsed AC" at the right voltage moves the points more reliably than straight DC. Also less heating and chance of overheating if the switch is depressed longer.

Greg