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Track,DCC And Reverse Loops

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  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Track,DCC And Reverse Loops
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 12:06 PM
Hello,
I'm modeling the Cajon Pass in N Scale. I'm undecided in which track to go with. Kato Unitrack or Peco Code 55 flex are my two choices. The Kato track seems easy to use but the gray plastic roadbed does not seem to fit well into this type of scenery and adding a brown ballast just seems to me like it won't look right. Kato track I find is also very expensive and there is not much avaliable as far as things like turntables,signals etc. are concerned.
My main concern with flex track is bending the track without kinking it and getting the proper curve from it. Is there a trick or a special way to avoid this problem?
With DCC is there any special wiring you need to do as you lay your track? Are feeder wires still needed through out the layout? If using Peco do you need to add anything to the switches in order to use DCC such as a switch machine to it? With Kato are the pre-intalled wires on the switches still needed?
Also with DCC do you still need to create insulated blocks and do reverse loops also need any special wiring or just insulated as well?
Sorry for all the questions but I want to do this right the first time so any input anyone has would be greatly appreciated.I thank you in advance for your time.

Louie
  • Member since
    January 2001
  • From: Guelph, Ont.
  • 1,476 posts
Posted by BR60103 on Wednesday, November 12, 2003 11:59 PM
Lots of questions!
You should not worry about kinking the flex track; it'll usually recover unless you bend an angle in it. Check your hobby shop for metal templates that fit between the rails to give you a constant radius curve.
DCC still needs frequent feeders to prevent voltage drop.
All reverse loops need 2 sets of double gaps (i.e. in both rails) to prevent short circuits -- doesn't matter if it's DC or DCC. In DCC you need to wire the reverse loop separately -- the usual method is a reverse loop module (black box) that handles everything. If you have a switch machine with extra contacts you might be able to make that into a reversing switch for the loop.
If you have a plain reverse loop, you should make the reversing section as long as possible -- put the gaps just beyond the frog of the switch. If you have a number of tracks and turnouts involved, you will have to do some thinking and planning as you want the reversing section to be longer than a train.

--David

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