Help Newbie Choose/setup Digital!

PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
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620
Tamworth, Staffs.
No connection..
Compare it with the diagram in Post #7..
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
No connection..
Compare it with the diagram in Post #7..
Thanks Phil. Ah but I am not that Electrically Literate to make the connection with the Circular bit in the pic and the circuit diagram. Thus my query. As they say you do not know what you do not know!
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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Greg that looks interesting I could even make one of them, presume the Bridge Rectifier is the round blob with 524 on it. Also where the Middle Lower Wire comes out of it is there a join to the centre of the 4 Diodes or should it be isolated. That is not too clear from the Picture.
No join in the middle of the "string" of 4 diodes Jon, just close in the picture.

It's a cool circuit, the full wave bridge allows the voltage to be reduced no matter what the polarity.

The addition of the "string" of diodes "inside" allows setting how much voltage drop you have.

That particular situation reduces voltage by 6 diode drops (trace through the circuit and count the diodes to get from one side to the other)

Put this in series with either motor lead and you drop the voltage by 6 times 0.7 volts, or 4.2 volts. Need more voltage drop? Add more diodes in the "string".

This circuit uses fewer diodes than the more traditional 2 parallel strings of 6 diodes each, and is likewise more compact. The picture is not the most compact way to assemble it physically, but it shows the circuit clearly.

Greg
 
A

AMuller396

Registered
29 Oct 2017
8
1
Los Angeles, CA
Guys,

I included a picture of my plans for my garden layout. I would like to get some critique from you guys and also some tips of do's and don'ts. Im also now having doubts on using the Piko Smart Control at 5 amps. Im not sure if it can handle this large of a layout. Ive looked into the ESU Cab Control which is similar to the Piko Smart Control but at 7 amps. I might have to go back to the drawing board on choosing a DCC system. Id like to stay under $500 if possible.

Im very new to this so I'd need some advice how to wire everything up. It seems to me it will be daunting, so im kind of worried, and might just scrap the whole thing. I have 80% of the tracks and Id like to run a Harz style era scenery/trains.

Do the LGB Turnouts need to be adjusted for DCC run other than connecting to a decoder?

On the bottom left of the layout I was at first thinking of using LGB R2 (1646mm) Diameter, but saw that Piko had a slightly larger Diameter Track G-R3 (920mm Radius) so am going to use that since don't want to use the LGB R3 (2486mm Diameter) which will cut into my grass area by a lot.

Thanks in advance

136292_8c0baa922869b371efec286efbfd2404.jpg
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
23,888
620
Tamworth, Staffs.
Clever! - No reverse-loops (fingers-crossed, I didn't miss one)? :think:

The passing loop on the right-hand side, is nowhere near long enough. - This does depend on what you intend to run, of course.
If the intention is to extend double-track, down the right-hand boundary, then it can be made longer then, but it will limit the length of train quite drastically.

Do the LGB Turnouts need to be adjusted for DCC run other than connecting to a decoder?
You can drive two points, from one channel, if you have a loop arrangement that you want BOTH ends to be one-or-the-other, at the same time.

Alternatively, you can set the points at each end of a loop, and 'push-through' in one direction. - You do not need to drive the point then.

Others will be along in a minute.. :)
 
idlemarvel

idlemarvel

Registered
13 Jul 2015
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Ascot
I agree with PhilP PhilP about the passing loops, as long as you are happy for trains to always use the right hand track then you can use the manual point switches to act as a real-life "sprung point" to save yourself the expense of motors and the tedium of wiring. The more you can use sprung points the better (cheaper, less wiring, less maintenance)

If you value time over money then for those points that do need a motor you could consider using Massoth single motor accessory decoders in situ as they are quite weatherproof and the wiring is then minimal. They will actually drive two motors. It's more economical to use 4 port accessory decoders (I think there are 6 port ones available not from Massoth though) but they need more care if you want to place them outdoors and you may want to bring them in for winter.

You can use LGB points (motorised) with DCC with no adjustment. Most accessory decoders (like Massoth) are set up to give the appropriate power blip (technical term) for each direction.

As your proposed layout is about 20 time bigger than anything I've ever had, I'll let others discuss how many power connections you might need, more than one that's for certain. As for amperage, that depends on how many trains you will be running at the same time. Note that even if trains are stationary they can still be using 0.5A or more if they have smoke unit turned on, or if all the carriages are using track power for lights.

Hope some of this helps.
 
a98087

a98087

Registered
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Wiltshire
Make sure you Install additional track connections, that way any problems with poor rail joints will be minimised,

But looks a good fun layout,

Dan
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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You only have one "S" curve, where you immediately go from a curve in one direction to a curve in the opposite direction. It's in the bottom left curve on the "inside" track. ease that curve a bit, get a piece of straight for transition, and eliminate the straight before the switch.

Greg
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
15,245
560
71
St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Guys,

I included a picture of my plans for my garden layout. I would like to get some critique from you guys and also some tips of do's and don'ts. Im also now having doubts on using the Piko Smart Control at 5 amps. Im not sure if it can handle this large of a layout. Ive looked into the ESU Cab Control which is similar to the Piko Smart Control but at 7 amps. I might have to go back to the drawing board on choosing a DCC system. Id like to stay under $500 if possible.

Im very new to this so I'd need some advice how to wire everything up. It seems to me it will be daunting, so im kind of worried, and might just scrap the whole thing. I have 80% of the tracks and Id like to run a Harz style era scenery/trains.

Do the LGB Turnouts need to be adjusted for DCC run other than connecting to a decoder?

On the bottom left of the layout I was at first thinking of using LGB R2 (1646mm) Diameter, but saw that Piko had a slightly larger Diameter Track G-R3 (920mm Radius) so am going to use that since don't want to use the LGB R3 (2486mm Diameter) which will cut into my grass area by a lot.

Thanks in advance

View attachment 258566
This may help to get your Right Hand Loop a little bit longer. Also be very careful not to try any Crossovers at the Top near the Planting as you would in efffect create a Reverse Loop with all the Problems that would entail.

if you like the Harz you may like to look at my Vid and Line Build linked below. I am into the Harz Lines, Selktalbahn being my chosen route.

136298_a5be25f6dc1e92094b0152a1027baee8.jpeg
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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There is no reason to not have reversing loops, it is a simple process, with a few insulators and a "black box". Being free of the constraints of simple DC layout design is one of the advantages of DCC.

Reversing loops are not complicated, especially if you use the "short sensing" methodology, instead of adding all the complexity of the isolating sections and relays and complications the Massoth and similar units demand.

Greg
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
23,888
620
Tamworth, Staffs.
I was not suggesting they are difficult, or bad, just that the OP has not got any in what is shown. - Reverse-loops being a common 'gotcha' for people new to track-powered model rail.
 
A

AMuller396

Registered
29 Oct 2017
8
1
Los Angeles, CA
I agree with PhilP PhilP about the passing loops, as long as you are happy for trains to always use the right hand track then you can use the manual point switches to act as a real-life "sprung point" to save yourself the expense of motors and the tedium of wiring. The more you can use sprung points the better (cheaper, less wiring, less maintenance)
Thanks for the tip on the switches that dont need motors, Great Idea!

Make sure you Install additional track connections, that way any problems with poor rail joints will be minimised,
Dan, where on the layout should I do this and how many locations? Also, can LGB 10153 be used to separate the tracks into blocks?

You only have one "S" curve, where you immediately go from a curve in one direction to a curve in the opposite direction. It's in the bottom left curve on the "inside" track. ease that curve a bit, get a piece of straight for transition, and eliminate the straight before the switch.
Greg, Im not quiet sure where this point is? Are you referring to the bottom left section of the layout? if so If I add a straight I would need to increase the removal of the Grass Area, which I want to keep to a minimum. What sort of problems will this have going from left to right curve?

This may help to get your Right Hand Loop a little bit longer. Also be very careful not to try any Crossovers at the Top near the Planting as you would in efffect create a Reverse Loop with all the Problems that would entail.
if you like the Harz you may like to look at my Vid and Line Build linked below. I am into the Harz Lines, Selktalbahn being my chosen route.
JonD, Thank you for the suggestion. Will definitely incorporate that! Thanks for the lINK. Enjoyed seeing your layout. Looks Great!

There is no reason to not have reversing loops, it is a simple process, with a few insulators and a "black box". Being free of the constraints of simple DC layout design is one of the advantages of DCC.

Reversing loops are not complicated, especially if you use the "short sensing" methodology, instead of adding all the complexity of the isolating sections and relays and complications the Massoth and similar units demand.
What product would make this easy?


Any one can comment on what DCC to use? Still wondering if theres anything out there for less than $500 that can work on this layout? If I use the Piko smart control at 17v how do I make sure all sections get a full 17V im sure theres going to be a voltage drop. Im probably not gonna run more than 2 or 3 trains at the same time.
 
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Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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The autoreverser to use in G scale is unequivocally the DCC specialties PSX-AR.... better than anything else on the market.
Research it and you will see. Used in Z to G scales. Used by clubs. enough, research it...

17v is too low in my opinion for G scale unless you are running only about 25 scale mph, so no suggestion there.... yes there is always going to be voltage drops, figure a volt or 2 if your wiring is good and you are drawing several amps.

I'm concerned you are trying to scrimp on the DCC system but you will run up to 3 trains at a time?

5 amps could be marginal with lighted cars unless you have all LGB, short trains and no lighted cars.

Get the NCE system, 10 amp, about $650, great throttles, can be connected to JMRI, etc.

Greg

p.s. read up on "S" curves in model railroads, a wealth of information, no reason to repeat it here other than to tell you it is a bad idea.
 
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a98087

a98087

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8 Nov 2009
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Wiltshire
Dan, where on the layout should I do this and how many locations? Also, can LGB 10153 be used to separate the tracks into blocks?

You could use the Lgb 10153, but it’s fun cheaper to use an insulated rail clamp,and I’ll be tempted to fit the jumper wires , at the top centre of the pictures here it’s says trees and plants, and one on the far left sided where the two tracks run parallel.

Dan
 
A

AMuller396

Registered
29 Oct 2017
8
1
Los Angeles, CA
Just wanted to update. I think I've homed in on a DCC setup. Im thinking of purchasing a ESU Cab Control (21V, 7A) for $370. Its the twin of the Piko Smart Control but with 7A and can be expanded higher by 4A or 8A boosters.

Anyone use this right now?
 
P

phils2um

Phil S
11 Sep 2015
369
153
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Reversing loops are not complicated, especially if you use the "short sensing" methodology, instead of adding all the complexity of the isolating sections and relays and complications the Massoth and similar units demand.
I've been using a LGB 55085 Reverse Loop Module (which is identical to the Massoth 8157001 Reverse loop Module in everything except color) on my outdoor RR for three years now. It works perfectly and without any problems. There are no additional relays required - just the module itself (which does indeed have a couple of internal relays). Yes, using the sensors track segments rather than short circuit sensing does involve some additional wiring. And, some thought and careful following of instructions is required to make sure the sensor segments are wired correctly. But, once installed, it works just fine with no operator intervention required. And, if desired, an internal jumper can be changed to make the module short circuit sensing too which eliminates the need for the sensor tracks. The module is weather resistant (not weather-proof) and designed for use outdoors. Mine resides in a Polo trackside building year-around along with a 4 channel DCC switch decoder that controls routing through my wye. The building protects the module from direct exposure to rain and snow. If you're interested check out my "Phil S' RR" thread under the "Large Scale Pictures" heading on this site.

I've read the PSX-AR manual. I like the fact that it is all solid state. It also has provision for additional operating possibilities (and wiring complexity!) It is less expensive at one-half to two-thirds the cost of the Massoth or LGB modules. But, it will require a weather-proof enclosure to make sure it is adequately protected when used in the outdoors.

Finally, I may be paranoid, and my concern may be completely un-warranted but I just don't like the idea of using my expensive locomotives as a short circuit to cause the polarity of my reverse loop (mine's actually a wye) to change over.
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
15,245
560
71
St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
I've been using a LGB 55085 Reverse Loop Module (which is identical to the Massoth 8157001 Reverse loop Module in everything except color) on my outdoor RR for three years now. It works perfectly and without any problems. There are no additional relays required - just the module itself (which does indeed have a couple of internal relays). Yes, using the sensors track segments rather than short circuit sensing does involve some additional wiring. And, some thought and careful following of instructions is required to make sure the sensor segments are wired correctly. But, once installed, it works just fine with no operator intervention required. And, if desired, an internal jumper can be changed to make the module short circuit sensing too which eliminates the need for the sensor tracks. The module is weather resistant (not weather-proof) and designed for use outdoors. Mine resides in a Polo trackside building year-around along with a 4 channel DCC switch decoder that controls routing through my wye. The building protects the module from direct exposure to rain and snow. If you're interested check out my "Phil S' RR" thread under the "Large Scale Pictures" heading on this site.

I've read the PSX-AR manual. I like the fact that it is all solid state. It also has provision for additional operating possibilities (and wiring complexity!) It is less expensive at one-half to two-thirds the cost of the Massoth or LGB modules. But, it will require a weather-proof enclosure to make sure it is adequately protected when used in the outdoors.

Finally, I may be paranoid, and my concern may be completely un-warranted but I just don't like the idea of using my expensive locomotives as a short circuit to cause the polarity of my reverse loop (mine's actually a wye) to change over.
I have been involved with the running of a Line using LGB then Massoth Reverse Loop over quite a few Years. No problems or damage were endured by any of the Locomotives used on the Line and there were a lot of different and expensive LGB Locomotives involved.

As for the original Track Plan I can forsee a few issues with incorporating a Reverse Loop, the main one being that a Train in its entirety if fitted with Metal Wheels would need to be completely writhin the Shorting Section before passing out of it. As things stand I cannot see a resolution for that, short of adding a Central Line somewhere on the Tracks that run Parallel. Here there may not be much room for this additional Track? As I have shown below the new Central Track creates a Reverce Loop of sorts but may indeed be shorter than the longest projected Train. The Shorting Section ends in what looks to be a Crossover but as it will,be the Shirting Section it should just have one point from the Right part of the line and the one shown at the bottom.
136430_6691ae22383b8303583018463980f5c1.jpeg
 
L

LGeoB

Registered
12 Dec 2017
75
6
Perth, Western Australia
I've been using a LGB 55085 Reverse Loop Module (which is identical to the Massoth 8157001 Reverse loop Module in everything except color) on my outdoor RR for three years now. It works perfectly and without any problems. There are no additional relays required - just the module itself (which does indeed have a couple of internal relays). Yes, using the sensors track segments rather than short circuit sensing does involve some additional wiring. And, some thought and careful following of instructions is required to make sure the sensor segments are wired correctly. But, once installed, it works just fine with no operator intervention required. And, if desired, an internal jumper can be changed to make the module short circuit sensing too which eliminates the need for the sensor tracks. The module is weather resistant (not weather-proof) and designed for use outdoors. Mine resides in a Polo trackside building year-around along with a 4 channel DCC switch decoder that controls routing through my wye. The building protects the module from direct exposure to rain and snow. If you're interested check out my "Phil S' RR" thread under the "Large Scale Pictures" heading on this site.

I've read the PSX-AR manual. I like the fact that it is all solid state. It also has provision for additional operating possibilities (and wiring complexity!) It is less expensive at one-half to two-thirds the cost of the Massoth or LGB modules. But, it will require a weather-proof enclosure to make sure it is adequately protected when used in the outdoors.

Finally, I may be paranoid, and my concern may be completely un-warranted but I just don't like the idea of using my expensive locomotives as a short circuit to cause the polarity of my reverse loop (mine's actually a wye) to change over.
Never had a problem with Lenz reverse loop devices (work by detecting a short). The time it takes to detect the short and switch polarity is very short.

Geoff
 
L

LGeoB

Registered
12 Dec 2017
75
6
Perth, Western Australia
Never had a problem with Lenz reverse loop devices (work by detecting a short). The time it takes to detect the short and switch polarity is very short.

Geoff
Forgot to mention. I never leave electronics outside wired to the track. One lightning strike is all it takes, even if it is a couple of hundred metres away. I lost a Lenz device and a TV with such a strike. All of my DCC stuff is in the shed and I disconnect turnouts and air gap the track when not in use.

Geoff
 
JimmyB

JimmyB

Phase 1 complete, roll on Phase 2
23 Feb 2018
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Weston-super-Mare
Forgot to mention. I never leave electronics outside wired to the track. One lightning strike is all it takes, even if it is a couple of hundred metres away. I lost a Lenz device and a TV with such a strike. All of my DCC stuff is in the shed and I disconnect turnouts and air gap the track when not in use.

Geoff
Geoff, valid point, I lost a router, video player (a while ago) and blew the TV fuses in a lightening storm, never considered disconnecting my devices TE and ancillary drivers, I assume a strike will take it all out - never happen with battery power ;)