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What power input is this?

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Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, February 11, 2019 10:15 AM

duplicate post

Henry

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Posted by gthomson on Monday, February 11, 2019 1:21 PM

He was a member of our club that suddenly passed away Sad

I was the only other member of the club into trolleys. We have some very smart members for sure so I could bring it up with them but was a bit apprehensive of asking something that might have been obvious.

There might have been other items that did not get passed along to me. 

Is there a trolley guru here in the forum I could talk to? I will post more pictures but I'm not sure if they will help. The connector labeled "power track" connects directly with the track and the overhead wires and the connector labeled "switch power" connects to the first tortoise and then I think daisy chains to the others. There are 4 switches on the outside of the  layout frame to control the turn outs. 

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Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, February 11, 2019 1:51 PM

You could go to your first post and edit the title to something like:

Powering a Trolley Layout.  

Or just start a new thread with as much detail as you can give us about exactly what you have.   That should bring anyone with that interest into the discussion.  If these are European trolleys, we have Europeans that can tell you more about the systems like Marklin.

Looking at the Bowser site, I see they made DCC trolleys, which were switchable between pure track power and track cantenary power.  That exhausts my knowledge of trolleys.  Edit Aside from finding a power connector you didn't expect, I think this should not be hard.

Henry

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Posted by rrinker on Monday, February 11, 2019 4:08 PM

gthomson

He was a member of our club that suddenly passed away Sad

I was the only other member of the club into trolleys. We have some very smart members for sure so I could bring it up with them but was a bit apprehensive of asking something that might have been obvious.

There might have been other items that did not get passed along to me. 

Is there a trolley guru here in the forum I could talk to? I will post more pictures but I'm not sure if they will help. The connector labeled "power track" connects directly with the track and the overhead wires and the connector labeled "switch power" connects to the first tortoise and then I think daisy chains to the others. There are 4 switches on the outside of the  layout frame to control the turn outs. 

 

 Well, then that sounds very straightforward. 9-12V DC power supply to the one for switch power. The toggles control the Tortoises.

 Variable input to the track power one to control the speed and direction of the trolleys (don't forget to swap the poles to go the other way, trolleys with pole pickup don't like to run backwards!). I'd be willing to bet the original owner had a small handheld DC power pack to plug in there, but any DC power pack will work just fine.

 Electrically, the connections are irrelevent. You cna always remove those sockets and wire directly to the power sources, or install a different kind of socket. But you can easily find wall warts with the right plug and the right voltage for the switch one, so it might be nice to leave that. Most DC power packs have screw terminals to attach the wires to, so it might be easier to remove or bypass the track power jack with just wires to attach to whatever power pack you end up using. Making a small shelf to hold a power pack would be a good addition as well.

 There's nothign special electrically about trolleys compared to diesel and stem models, they work exactly the same except that one side of the power pickup is an overhead wire instead of both rails - if it's wired that way. Sometimes the wire is just for show. There are commercially available trolley models that actually use the overhead, so if the layout is wired for such, that's the kind you want. Many are switchable, there is a small switch under the shell to select between regular 2 rail or overhead operation. 

                                          --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 BigDaddy on Monday, February 11, 2019 4:50 PM

I butchered my answer, typing the exact opposite of what I intended.  Good thing the FBI wasn't asking the question or they would be back at my house at 5 am.  Embarrassed

 

Henry

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Posted by gthomson on Monday, February 11, 2019 5:45 PM

rrinker
Electrically, the connections are irrelevent. You cna always remove those sockets and wire directly to the power sources, or install a different kind of socket. But you can easily find wall warts with the right plug and the right voltage for the switch one, so it might be nice to leave that. Most DC power packs have screw terminals to attach the wires to, so it might be easier to remove or bypass the track power jack with just wires to attach to whatever power pack you end up using. Making a small shelf to hold a power pack would be a good addition as well.

No everybody it's all good I think I found the answer i was looking for and I guess I thought there might be a different answer but i would bet he just plugged in a 9-12 v wal wart to power the switches and then had some kind of special transformer he used to operate the trolley or maybe it just ran continuosly? I think changing the sockets and adding a standard transformer would be best.

I have a few trolleys and one has the option to switch from live wire to track. The others are just track.

i'll post another thread specific to trolleys to find the guru's Smile

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Posted by Lone Wolf and Santa Fe on Monday, February 11, 2019 5:54 PM

gthomson
I'm not familiar with powering a layout with a standard DC power supply (Wal Wart). I have dozens of Wal Warts which powered portable CD players, portable phones, etc.. Can any of these be used or do I need to ensure a specific voltage?

You need a specific voltage. If you read the labels closely on your wall warts you will see that they can vary widely from millivolts to much higher levels. Some wall warts are user selected voltage so you can pick the correct voltage. What you need to do is identify the devices which the power supply goes to then get the proper power supply. If it is for powering standard remote switches for turnouts by Atlas or similar then you need something like 20 volts AC, not DC. (20VAC is the AC accessory output from a standard Tyco electric train transformer.)

I don't have any Tortoise machines so they might be different.

 

Modeling a fictional version of California set in the 1990s Lone Wolf and Santa Fe Railroad
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Posted by rrinker on Monday, February 11, 2019 6:32 PM

 Tortoises run on DC. 9-12 volts. There are two ways to control them, but from the way this layout is wired, they are being controlled by DPDT toggles wired as reversing switches. Motor inside the Tortoise turns one way, points move to one side. Reverse it, just like reversing a loco, the points flip to the other side.

                                     --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 gregc on Monday, February 11, 2019 6:35 PM

gthomson
I think changing the sockets and adding a standard transformer would be best.

could you look at what the connector goes to, first?

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

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Posted by rrinker on Monday, February 11, 2019 6:37 PM

gthomson

 

 
rrinker
Electrically, the connections are irrelevent. You cna always remove those sockets and wire directly to the power sources, or install a different kind of socket. But you can easily find wall warts with the right plug and the right voltage for the switch one, so it might be nice to leave that. Most DC power packs have screw terminals to attach the wires to, so it might be easier to remove or bypass the track power jack with just wires to attach to whatever power pack you end up using. Making a small shelf to hold a power pack would be a good addition as well.

 

No everybody it's all good I think I found the answer i was looking for and I guess I thought there might be a different answer but i would bet he just plugged in a 9-12 v wal wart to power the switches and then had some kind of special transformer he used to operate the trolley or maybe it just ran continuosly? I think changing the sockets and adding a standard transformer would be best.

I have a few trolleys and one has the option to switch from live wire to track. The others are just track.

i'll post another thread specific to trolleys to find the guru's Smile

 

 Is the layotu a continuous loop? Just with some alternate paths depending on the position of the point (if they are standard trolley type turnouts, they probably only have 1 point, instead of a pair)? If so, it's possible some fixed voltage way applied to the track and the trolley just ran at whatever speed that voltage allowed, and through flipping of the Tortoise coontrols, it was directed around alternate paths.

 Can you post a picture of the layout itself?

                                        --Randy

 

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

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

  • Member since
    March, 2017
  • 68 posts
Posted by gthomson on Monday, February 11, 2019 7:09 PM

Update, I found a 12V wal wart power supply from an old portable DVD player. Plugged it in the switch power connector and got some activity from the tortoise engines. One of the units has a wire that needs to be re-soldered but the rest work. 

Here's some more pictures of the layout. Really appreciate everyone's help here.

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Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, February 11, 2019 7:34 PM

I'm not fond of the builder's use of wire colors.  Black wires go to red and gray wires. Gray wires go to red wires and red wires go to green wires.  But if it all works I wouldn't change it.

I would not want to string catenary.  He did a nice job there.

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

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Posted by rrinker on Monday, February 11, 2019 7:42 PM

 Looks like it was made to expand off the end there.

Note that live overhead has an advantage like 3 rail - there are no issues with reverse loops. So all you have to do is apply power to the tracka dn overhead and run around any way you want, no reverse loop issues.

                                        --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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