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Understanding the NCE EB1 Circuit Breaker (in Combo with PSX-AR)

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 5:54 AM

mlehman

Rich,

That is nice and tidy. Nothing like that here...Whistling

I tested the CB1 linked by itself to my booster. Whenever the CB1 shorted, so did the booster. Not sure what else I could do after trying it wired in multipl ways as best I could.

Thought I had my last PSX going, as I could get both LEDs working on it and power to the track. First short, though, and it would jjust lay down and blink. Or it would stay powered, but any DCC commands were ignored -- the loco would continue on, zombie style.

So I'm still a couple of bottles shy of a six-pack on this project unless someone else know a trick to revive the PSX or can suggest a new tack on what to do to get the CB1 working right.

 

Well, even you are not working now, calling an EB1 a CB1.  Laugh

OK, let's get serious. With only the EB1 on the bus, the booster, along with the EB1 shut down on the short.  With only the PSX on the bus, the booster shut down but the PSX did not shut down on the short.  Or, at other times, the PSX did not shut down and neither did the booster???

What are you doing to create the short?  The quarter test?

What would happen if you placed only one known good PSX on the bus?

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by rrinker on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 6:54 AM

 Sounds like you may have a crossed feeder to a different circuit breaker district or else a bad gap somewhere at one end or the other of the section you are trying to use the EB1 on.

 Or if those breakers are all hooked up downstream of the old toggles which you have all set on the A position - might there be one feeder to the EB1 district that comes from a different block toggle?

 

                                --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 7:15 AM

richhotrain
 

With only the EB1 on the bus, the booster, along with the EB1 shut down on the short.  With only the PSX on the bus, the booster shut down but the PSX did not shut down on the short.  Or, at other times, the PSX did not shut down and neither did the booster??? 

What are you doing to create the short?  The quarter test? 

What would happen if you placed only one known good PSX on the bus? 

Rich 

 

rrinker
 

 Sounds like you may have a crossed feeder to a different circuit breaker district or else a bad gap somewhere at one end or the other of the section you are trying to use the EB1 on. 

Or if those breakers are all hooked up downstream of the old toggles which you have all set on the A position - might there be one feeder to the EB1 district that comes from a different block toggle? 

                                --Randy 

Inquiring minds want to know.

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 9:38 AM

Hey, it was late and my brain was half asleep, just needed to take my body to bed...Sleep

The PSX all work fine, except for that last rogue one, no matter where installed. It was involved in an altercation with a bridge rectifier at one point and it's acted funny ever since. Thought I'd found a bad diode and fixed it, but maybe one of the power transistors or a IC is the problem???

More in the next answer...

Mike Lehman

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 9:50 AM

rrinker

 Sounds like you may have a crossed feeder to a different circuit breaker district or else a bad gap somewhere at one end or the other of the section you are trying to use the EB1 on.

 Or if those breakers are all hooked up downstream of the old toggles which you have all set on the A position - might there be one feeder to the EB1 district that comes from a different block toggle?

 

                                --Randy

 

 

In testing, I hooked the EB1 up directly to the booster track output so there was no issue with the wiring back to it.

I shorted it by attaching a wire to one output and touching to the other. The LED on the EB1 went out, as it should when shorted, and the booster started blinking its distress call, which the EB1 shouldn't if one assumes it is supposed to act similarly to the PSX series breakers.

The breakers I've been putting in are wired to bypass the bus that's in use and hook up right next to the CS/booster to feed the circuits going on that particular breaker.

The toggle switches are all downstream from the breaker, so I wouldn't think a miswired one is issue as no problems with them before the alteration. At least I'm pretty sure they're not all that way, given I've tried the EB1 on probably half a dozen different locations with exactly the same results.

I did try several different amp settings, all lower than on the (5 amp) CS/boosters, hoping that might help. I've left the EB1 at its fastest breaker setting of 16ms. Still no joy.

Mike Lehman

Urbana, IL

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 9:56 AM

mlehman

The PSX all work fine, except for that last rogue one, no matter where installed. It was involved in an altercation with a bridge rectifier at one point and it's acted funny ever since. Thought I'd found a bad diode and fixed it, but maybe one of the power transistors or a IC is the problem???

I wonder if DCC Specialities could repair the "rogue" PSX or, at least, allow a trade-in discount on a new one?

Might be worth a call. 1-800-671-0641

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 10:04 AM

mlehman

I did try several different amp settings, all lower than on the (5 amp) CS/boosters, hoping that might help. I've left the EB1 at its fastest breaker setting of 16ms. Still no joy.

 

The factory setting on the EB1 trip current is 2.5 amps. On a dead short, 2.5 amps will be sufficient to trip the EB1, so it ought to be left there.

Rich

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 10:22 AM

Mike, when you say that all the PSX work fine except the rogue PSX, does that answer my previous question which was, What would happen if you placed only one known good PSX on the bus?

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by rrinker on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 11:20 AM

 Another test - hook the input of the EB1 to a booster and short the output - does it work? Could just be a bad EB1. ANd Rich's idea, try one of the known working PSX's in this district. If it works, then we're back to  maybe a bad EB1, if the PSX also doesn;t work right, there's a wiring problem with the track bus and feeders in that section.

                            --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 12:59 PM

rrinker
Another test - hook the input of the EB1 to a booster and short the output - does it work? Could just be a bad EB1. ANd Rich's idea, try one of the known working PSX's in this district.

Randy,

Already tried direct connection of the EB1 to the booster, with the results as noted above.

I pulled the known good PSX-1 I installed on the Cascade and moved it to the area where I'm trying to get the PSR-AR to work and hooked it up. Sahzzam! It worked great, just hookup and go. Drop a quarter and it shuts down just that district.

So doubt the wiring is the issue.There may be some adjustment possible on the EB1 that I haven't tried yet and it seems to act just like it should, except for the problem that it passes the short through to the CS/booster. It does protect the power district it's installed in, but effectively adds no flexibility or protection beyond what's on the CS/booster already.

Hooked the haunted PSX-AR back up. Instead of uncontrolled DCC power getting through, this time was another variation, a sort of 2/3 voltage version that allows control, but only at a lower speed. It does shutdown with the quarter test properly, but it won't bring the power back afterwards - I have to manually kill power to the board to make it reset. I did do a full reset to factory on the flaky PSX-AR values that may have made some difference here.

Otherwise, after testing on the same circuit, a known good PSX unit works.

An iffy PSX unit has issues.

A EB1 just doesn't work, as it doesn't isolate the command station/booster from the short it sees.

Mike Lehman

Urbana, IL

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 1:12 PM

OK, Mike, that helps.  

Clearly, that rogue PSX is damaged. I would encourage you to call DCC Specialties about a repair or a trade-in on a good one.

As for the EB1, it isn't acting like it should.  Call NCE and discuss the performance issues to see what they have to say. It could be faulty or maybe it simply requires a reset to factory default. NCE may be able to advise you on how to get it working properly.

Rich

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 1:16 PM

richhotrain
I wonder if DCC Specialities could repair the "rogue" PSX or, at least, allow a trade-in discount on a new one?

Yeah, I thought about that when I first tried dealing with it maybe 10 years ago. Might still be worth an inquiry if a repair is cheaper than new.

Mike Lehman

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 1:47 PM

richhotrain
As for the EB1, it isn't acting like it should. Call NCE and discuss the performance issues to see what they have to say. It could be faulty or maybe it simply requires a reset to factory default.

I tried the factory reset multiple times without solving the issue. NCE does stand behind their stuff, just was hoping it was something I could fix today. I am pretty happy with the PSX line at this point, so may just go that way when the budget allows.

Mike Lehman

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Posted by rrinker on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 3:14 PM

 Sounds like the EB1 detects the short but is not opening the circuit - something's not right with it. Bad power transistor or MOSFET or whatever they use as a switch, or maybe the line from the controller to the transistor is open. The controller is clearly seeing the short since it turns the LED off. I still prefer the PSX way of opening BOTH sides - the servo drivers I am making for turnout control will have TWO relays for frog power - first it turns OFF the frog power, then moves the points, changes the polarity, and then reapplies frog polarity - but it still should work.

               --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 3:50 PM

rrinker

I still prefer the PSX way of opening BOTH sides 

Same here, I prefer the PSX units as well.

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by mlehman on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 4:09 PM

Randy,

Yep, my conclusion, too, although I was thinking there moust be something wrong with it once we figured there was a problem at a recent op session. It's been in and working to shut things down for several months, but it's just been then that the offending loco and the people involved were in different rooms that made it apparent.

The EB1 looks like it's using a couple of power transistors, with the center leg cut off, similar to how the PSX-1 does. But the PSXs have been more idiot proof around here and that's a good thing.Dunce

I don't think there was anything I did that could account for the issue it's having. Seems pretty bulletproof and I don't remember any sparks flying, but something's dead inside.

The fact that my rogue PSX manages both lines may be why the incident with the bridge rectifier scrambled its brains. I'd forgotten the previous circuit was still energized with it iwhen I went to replace  the (bridge-rectifier enhanced) return loop reversing method with the PSX-AR. Fed the input with that and it wasn't right. Can't remember the exact issues, but I replaced it with a spare board and moved on. It's just that I did manage to get all the LEDs working and hoped lights on meant someone was home. Turns out it was just crazy Cousin Mel at homeGrumpy

Mike Lehman

Urbana, IL

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