Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

reverse loop module

7 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    February, 2018
  • 3 posts
reverse loop module
Posted by mxgallan on Monday, February 05, 2018 4:57 PM

hi, ok i'm sure this has been discussed on here in length, so what reverse loop module best suits a nce dcc system. i know digitrax, mrc, lenz. psx and bachman all have them,  but which one is the best in compatability and reliability.


  • Member since
    December, 2008
  • From: Mount Vernon WA
  • 968 posts
Posted by skagitrailbird on Tuesday, February 06, 2018 11:09 PM

The "best" is probably the PSX-AR by DCC Specialties. Sold by Tony's Train Exchange and others for about $45.  Adjustable trip values for the circuit breaker, can automate the  in/out turnout.

Roger Johnson
  • Member since
    September, 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 17,630 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, February 07, 2018 3:42 AM

The PSX-AR is a highly reliable auto-reverser. It is a solid state unit that reacts quickly to an electrical short. I have four of them on my layout.

The Digitrax AR-1 relies on a mechanical relay to correct an electrical short and, as such, it reacts a bit slower. Because of this, the AR-1 can be problematic if it is placed downstream from solid state units such as a PSX circuit breaker.

The AR-1 is a lot less expensive than the PSX-AR, so it all depends upon the rest of the electronic setup on your layout. At one time, I used AR-1s for my reversing sections, but when I decided to create power districts and protect them with circuit breakers, the AR-1s became less reliable, so I replaced them with PSX-AR units.


Alton Junction

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: Phoenix, AZ
  • 1,721 posts
Posted by bearman on Wednesday, February 07, 2018 5:31 AM

A member of my club has a reverse loop Y on his layout and uses the PSX-AR.  Works like a charm.  I am with Rich and Roger on this one.

Bear "It's all about having fun."

  • Member since
    December, 2004
  • From: Bedford, MA, USA
  • 18,156 posts
Posted by MisterBeasley on Wednesday, February 07, 2018 9:00 PM

I've got a couple of PS-REV units.  They're the older version of the PSX-AR.  After 10 years, they're still working flawlessly.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • 21 posts
Posted by cowjock on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 7:40 PM

Tamvalley dual frog juicers works well, just installed a second reverse loop on my layout last night using a FJ flawless easy installation.  If you want make it automatic (switching the switch) go with DCC SP PSX-AR works very well. I use a Power Pro 5 amp system no problems with either one.

  • Member since
    January, 2014
  • 826 posts
Posted by ROBERT PETRICK on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 8:03 PM

One more vote for the PSX-AR from Tony's. Solid state and reliable. I have two that are about 15 years old, and they are as good as ever. They were about $25 then; about $45 now. But there are a couple of models, some with additional features, I think. Mine do reversing and power management. If there's a short in the loop, the PSX-AR does not shut down the rest of the layout.

I also have a Digitrax AR-1. It is a mechanical relay sort of thing. It makes an audible 'click' when a train passes the insulated gap whether the polarity is reversed or not. But that is not necessarily a problem because every reversing section either starts or ends at a turnout, and there is the normal 'clickity-clack' as the train crosses the turnout frog anyway.



  • Member since
    January, 2010
  • 2,173 posts
Posted by peahrens on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 6:30 AM

I have a NCE 5A Powerhouse Pro system and have 2 OG-AR auto-reversers that are 6 yrs and counting, no issues.  I knew I did not want one with a relay, so the discussion started there.  They are now $32 and I chose them basis conversation with a Tony's fellow, which I highly recommend for peace of mind regarding what will work well with your particular system and intended use (amps per power sub-district, etc.).  Note that it is NOT for use with the NCE Powercab nor Digitrax Zephyr, thus I encourage that talk with Tony's.  

The PSX-AR is showing at $54 now.  So if the extra $ are not a biggie, or your system might need the adjustability of the trip setting, etc., that might be your need (or preference).

Another consideration is features such as trip indicators and related connections.  I did not consider that in making my choice, early in the layout process.  My reversers / circuit breakers are under the table so I can not see any indicator lights.  In the OG-AR case, I was lucky that there are easy connection points for external LEDs to flash when the breaker trips (short circuit) so I added LEDs to my track diagram on my control panel, a nice feature as I can tell at a glance that a short has occurred in one of my 3 sub-districts.



Modeling HO with a transition era UP bent

Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Users Online

There are no community member online

Search the Community

Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!