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DC wiring question on a new layout

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Friday, June 11, 2021 2:11 PM

richhotrain

I am a  DCC user, so I have no skin in this game. But, when the thread started out, I tried to follow along to see if I could learn something about DC block wiring and common rail.

But, at this point, this thread has become useless because of so many contradictory statements. Somebody must be right, and somebody must be wrong. Is there any way to sort this all out in order to salvage this thread?

Rich

 

Not necessarily. "Common rail" does not have a fixed definition.  Atlas Complete Wiring book describes common rail as a system with only one rail being gapped for electrical control.  That allows two or more cabs to be conveniently connected without doubling up all the block wiring but only blocks are needed to create a common rail system. One powerpack will do. As is commonly accepted.  

Alyth Yard

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Posted by richhotrain on Friday, June 11, 2021 2:26 PM

gregc
richhotrain
A lot of the replies seem contradictory to one another. 

can you site a specific example.  i only see confusing lengthy replies that may be self-contradictory

greg, I cannot believe that it is not obvious to you. The thread is littered with one guy saying this is fact and I am right, while the next guy says you are wrong and I am right. No, I am right and you are wrong.

Read back through the thread, and you will see what I am talking about. Who is to decide who is right and who is wrong? It renders the thread useless in my opinion.

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by richhotrain on Friday, June 11, 2021 2:57 PM

Lastspikemike

"Common rail" does not have a fixed definition.  Atlas Complete Wiring book describes common rail as a system with only one rail being gapped for electrical control.  That allows two or more cabs to be conveniently connected without doubling up all the block wiring but only blocks are needed to create a common rail system. One powerpack will do. As is commonly accepted.   

Oh well, I give up. I don't care anyhow because I am a DCC user. But I always thought that Common Rail was a well defined method of wiring as opposed to two rail wiring.

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Posted by RR_Mel on Friday, June 11, 2021 3:30 PM

Rich

Common rail is just what its name says, there is one rail common through out the layout.  In DCC both rails are common.  The reason I don’t like or use common rail is it ties the direction of the DC locomotives locomotive to the same direction.  

By using two separate power packs one can operate a DC locomotive in each direction but that requires one power pack to be connected positive to negative on the common rail.
 
I prefer to individually control the track polarity for each block individually, in both DC and DCC modes.  

Back when I was learning two rail power vs. Lionel three rail I decided it was easier to switch both rails when controlling my layout.  Even as a teenager connecting the positive terminal of one power pack to the negative of the second power pack didn’t sound like the way to operate two trains.

That was a decision of an early teenager and after 49 years and 10 months working in the electronics field nothing change even a little bit.

Like I said it’s strictly my preference to switch both rails rather than take a chance of crossing the voltages of two power packs.  I like the no brainer approach.

Mel



 
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Posted by CSX Robert on Friday, June 11, 2021 3:56 PM

richhotrain
But I always thought that Common Rail was a well defined method of wiring...

It is, at least for the 35+ years I've been model railroading every discussion of common rail wiring I've seen has refered to the same thing.  "Common rail" wiring refers to a method of wiring a layout for multiple cab control where one rail and one terminal of each cab is wired to a common point.  It doesn't refer to the  number of feeders, the common rail can have one or a hundred and more, it's still "common rail wiring" if those feeders all tie into the same common point with the cabs.  A single cab DC layout is not "common rail" wiring. Sure there is a common left rail and a common right rail, so some people may call that a common rail layout, but without having one of the rails tied into a common connection between two or more cabs, it is not "common rail" wiring as generally understood in model railroading parlance.  Even if that single cab layout has multiple blocks that can be switched on or off through a single pole switch, it still would not generally be considered a "common rail" layout.  What distinguishes "common rail" wiring is that common connection between the cabs.

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Friday, June 11, 2021 5:02 PM

I just quoted what Atlas calls common rail in Chapter 3. They even have a diagram of a simple oval with one power pack, figure 3-1. You have to move on to Chapter 4 before Atlas adds a second Cab (powerpack). So, clearly, there is not a commonly accepted definition of common rail.

The Atlas 220 Controller is designed to work with common rail and allows polarity to be reversed for Cab A relative to Cab B, each Cab is given its own reversing switch and the powerpack reversing switches are not used.

Atlas diagram shows all the positive powerpack terminals connected to the same polarity and only the negative terminals go to the control rails. Or maybe the opposite since DC doesn't care which way the current flows around the circuit. Atlas doesn't label their diagrams with positive and negative until they start discussing reversing sections when current direction relative to the rest of the layout becomes important.

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Posted by CSX Robert on Friday, June 11, 2021 9:03 PM

Lastspikemike
I just quoted what Atlas calls common rail in Chapter 3. They even have a diagram of a simple oval with one power pack, figure 3-1. You have to move on to Chapter 4 before Atlas adds a second Cab (powerpack). So, clearly, there is not a commonly accepted definition of common rail.

I don't have the Atlas book, so I'll take your word for it.  As I said, every discussion I've seen has been about mutliple cab control, but that may just be because when someone has a question about common rail wiring that's usually what they are wanting to do.  Allowing for that it's still a far cry from "all DC layouts are essentially common rail."

Lastspikemike
The Atlas 220 Controller is designed to work with common rail and allows polarity to be reversed for Cab A relative to Cab B, each Cab is given its own reversing switch and the powerpack reversing switches are not used.

The reason the Atlas 220 Controller has direction switches for the cabs is because with a reversing section you want to be able to reverse the cabs separately from the reversing section.  If you were to use the power pack reversing switch, to traverse a loop you have to stop the train in the loop, throw the power pack reversing switch and the loop reversing switch, and then you can proceed out the other end.  With the 220 controller you can throw the cab reversing switch while the train is in the loop and proceed through the loop without stopping.  Without a reversing section you do not need the 220 controller and are free to use the power pack reversing switches.

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Posted by gregc on Saturday, June 12, 2021 5:15 AM

Lastspikemike
The Atlas 220 Controller is designed to work with common rail

there's no reason the 220 couldn't be used on a non-common rail layout.   they are designed to plug into atlas 215 modules

Lastspikemike
and allows polarity to be reversed for Cab A relative to Cab B,

there's no need to reverse the polarity relative to the other cab.   there is a need to independently control the polarity of both the reversing section and mainline

Lastspikemike
each Cab is given its own reversing switch and the powerpack reversing switches are not used.

the powerpack reversing switch can certainly be used on both the mainline and reversing sections

Lastspikemike
Atlas wiring book page 37 figures 5-6 and 5-7 show incorrect connections from powerpacks to the 220. The 220 packaging diagram is also incorrect.

perhaps you can explain what is wrong with the Atlas wiring using the following diagram we can all see

 

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, June 12, 2021 6:16 AM

gregc

 

 
Lastspikemike
each Cab is given its own reversing switch and the powerpack reversing switches are not used.

 

the powerpack reversing switch can certainly be used on both the mainline and reversing sections

 

I've been staying out of these DC wiring threads because they are full of questionable or hard to understand advice and I don't have the time to sort them out.

But first off, I would never recomment anyone use the Atlas system....

Second, the power pack reversing switches can be used as a "local direction switch" for the cab in question, but it is not really the best approach.

By only using the separate reversing switches established for the mainline and reverse loops, you can establish a protocal where the direction switches are always in the same position relative to the actual direction of travel, best defined as east/west on the main, and clockwise/counter clockwise in reverse loops.

Every time you change the power pack direction switch, you reverse this whole protocal changing everything down stream. Very confusing at best.

As an example, on my DC powered layout I use Aristo wireless throttles. The layout is designed and wired such that if you push the left direction button on the throttle, the train ALWAYS moves to you visual left, etc.

My reverse loops (of which there are just one loop, one wye, and one turntable) are wired in a  semiautomatic fashion which maintains this directional continuity.

My entire layout is designed such that you are always viewing the trains as if you are facing north, left is west, right is east.

This is a distinct advantage for helping operators understand the layout, be they DC or DCC controled, but is a serious advantage on a DC layout direction switches set the direction of travel relative to the track, not the locomotive "front".

Sheldon     

    

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, June 12, 2021 8:23 AM

Lastspikemike
Atlas wiring book page 37 figures 5-6 and 5-7 show incorrect connections from powerpacks to the 220. The 220 packaging diagram is also incorrect.

The wiring diagrams provided by Atlas are correct.

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
I would never recomment anyone use the Atlas system..

Like Sheldon, I would NEVER suggest anyone use the Atlas wiring components.

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
I've been staying out of these DC wiring threads because they are full of questionable or hard to understand advice.

Yes. They always get muddled up by inexperienced people giving bad advice about a subject they do not comprehend.

That is why I deleted my posts about DC reverse loop wiring. The replies full of incorrect information ruined the thread.

Only people that have successfully wired multiple DC layouts, and understand DC control, should be participating in these conversations.

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Saturday, June 12, 2021 8:47 AM

The Atlas schematic for the 220 is not accurate as I previously noted. In particular, the circuit to  the "common rail" output from the same polarity input is not shown. To understand my remark you need to understand that the two reversing switches in the 220 just always be set to center off when ganging the 220's. Terminal C is then not connected in any 220 in the gang except the last one. Describe the line on the schematic that shows how the common rail power flows from either Cab A or B input terminal through the 220 to power the input terminal on the ganged 220. 

The schematic has not been changed but the 220 design has. Only the control rail terminal now carries through by external connectors.  Correction, the original 220 had four inputs which become two outputs. The schematic and the Atlas Wiring book ignore this change except for a written note. That written note does not appear in the Atlas Wiring book. Older 220 have to be used only downstream from the newer design of 220. Perhaps the original 220 could not be ganged. 

The schematic does show that when the C circuit did flow through the ganged 220's that the powerpack connection diagram ls incorrect. The inner of the two input terminals flow though the C common rail connection according to the schematics. That is correct as you will find if you check with a multimeter. The Atlas figure shows the powerpack is connected in series rather than in parallel to the 220. I know that is incorrect because I followed the figure and not the schematic.  If you wire the powerpack according to the figure instead of according to the schematic you will get a dead short. 

I know that the information I posted is correct because I ganged three 220's to feed three "reversing sections" and checked polarity using a multimeter.

Incidentally, it is actually confusing to refer to reversing sections and "main lines" as if these are different electrically. It makes more sense to realize that electrically speaking you automatically create two reversing sections as soon as you create one.

I did not say you cannot use the powerpack reversing switches  I said that you do not. If you do try to use the power pack reversing switches when using the 220 controller you will eventually get confused, I guarantee it. Electrically, there is no difference between using the 220 with 215 selectors and a series of DPDT block control switches except for polarity control. The 220 is quite convenient because it exploits the advantages of common rail wiring. There are disadvatages to common rail noted elsewhere. The major advantage of DCC is elimination of the need for any block control. Except for reversing sections.

I wired up one reversing section to a snap relay to bypass the reversing loop reversing switch and in that case you may need to occasionally manually reverse the reverse polarity within the reversing loop because of that feature. Reversing a train through a reversing loop with "automatic" reversing polarity controlled by the turnout can cause operating issues.

It is amazing how egotistical many posters seem to be about "their way" of describing stuff.  The rest of us idiots should just leave the forum or maybe just tug our forelocks before logging in. Who needs to log in, just read the words from the forum gods.

No comments required.  

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:10 AM

Lastspikemike
The Atlas schematic for the 220 is not accurate as I previously noted. In particular, the circuit to  the "common rail" output from the same polarity input is not shown. To understand my remark you need to understand that...

I cannot follow what you are stating.

Please post a corrected schematic drawing comparing it to the one that Greg showed, and also please include sketches outlining the 220 internal wiring design changes. That way I can understand your explanation.

-Kevin

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

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Posted by mikeGTW on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:24 AM

Kevin he is not going to post any pictures he refuses to do so 

And I totallly agree with CSX Robert  Sheldon and Kevin   

I have been in this since about 1970   worked at real RR for 30 plus yrs in signal dept as lead signalman foreman and tech    So as far as I can see the diag for the 220 is accurate   I don't know what the expert on all things relative to MR thinks is wrong with it but after all he has only been in this for the last two years

He also goes on about his layout (no picts)  and a club  (name ???) 

 

I never used any of the atlas controllers pcs  thought I had some in a junk box can't find them  I use  just their switches   over 100 on my layout   still have a few of the old brass kits new in box  kinda wonder if they changed the brass formula at some point cause those kits are still shiney no corrosion at all

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:26 AM

Lastspikemike

Incidentally, it is actually confusing to refer to reversing sections and "main lines" as if these are different electrically. It makes more sense to realize that electrically speaking you automatically create two reversing sections as soon as you create one.

Conceptually this is bad way to view this, because, based on my 50 years of experience, it actually confuses people more.

Yes, you are also reversing the main, but, per my earlier comments, DC operation is much easier for operators to understand if reversing switches are orientated "east - west" relative to physical movement.

Every layout is a little different and may require different solutions, but the ability of an operator to look at a reversing switch and KNOW which way the train will move is a huge advantage.

Since reverse loops typically change that flow, they need a different convention, hence clockwise, counter clockwise.

See, this is why I'm not in these conversations any more.

If the original poster would like some help, he is welcome to send me a PM.

Sheldon

    

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Posted by mikeGTW on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:29 AM

I forgot all my layouts have been common rail   all with mutiple controllers  

And I have one Y on my layout controlled by relays  

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:30 AM

jjdamnit
Since you are using Atlas controllers I suggest purchasing The Complete Atlas Wiring Book... Unfortunately, it is currently listed as Backorder on the Atlas website.

At least two copies of the 2017 edition of this #12 are currently up on eBay for close to the listed price.  I'm reasonably sure 'used' copies will show up on Amazon or some of the 'discount' book sites from time to time.

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Posted by mikeGTW on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:33 AM
I just tried calling Atlas and only Mon thru Fri so I will call them and see what they have to say
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Posted by richhotrain on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:37 AM

Overmod
 
jjdamnit
Since you are using Atlas controllers I suggest purchasing The Complete Atlas Wiring Book... Unfortunately, it is currently listed as Backorder on the Atlas website. 

At least two copies of the 2017 edition of this #12 are currently up on eBay for close to the listed price.  I'm reasonably sure 'used' copies will show up on Amazon or some of the 'discount' book sites from time to time. 

Why bother if the information and diagrams in the book are incorrect?

Rich

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Posted by CSX Robert on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:42 AM

Lastspikemike
Incidentally, it is actually confusing to refer to reversing sections and "main lines" as if these are different electrically. It makes more sense to realize that electrically speaking you automatically create two reversing sections as soon as you create one.

While you can change a train's travel direction with the direction switch, it can travel anywhere on the mainlines and will never change the direction it is physically pointing relative to the track.  When the train traverses a reversing section, it can change the direction it is physically pointing, how is labeling that a reversing section confusing?

 

When you add a reversing section, either section of the layout could be considered a reversing section relative to the other (section 'A' reverses trains for section 'B' or section B reverses trains for section 'A'), but most layouts have a section that makes sense to have as the "mainline" with any reversing sections reversing trains relative to that mainline.

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Saturday, June 12, 2021 9:52 AM

So which way is "clockwise" on a single track connecting two continuous running loops? And if the polarity of the exit from one loop is opposite to the polarity at the entry to the other loop which is the "correct" direction?

If you use Atlas 220 controllers there is no "main line" to have default polarity. If you use fully isolated blocks with independent polarity control (DPDT to each block) for each block which block is the main line? 

I fully recognize the dyed in the wool views of many posters to this forum.   

Not many fresh "faces" though, perhaps there's a cause and effect connection there.

Alyth Yard

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, June 12, 2021 10:02 AM

Two parallel tracks should have the same "east - west" orientation and not require a reversing section.

The real problem here is the rest of the short sighted thinking about cab control and how to connect the track sections to the throttles. But this is all I have time for.

Sheldon 

    

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Posted by CSX Robert on Saturday, June 12, 2021 10:05 AM

Lastspikemike
So which way is "clockwise" on a single track connecting two continuous running loops? And if the polarity of the exit from one loop is opposite to the polarity at the entry to the other loop which is the "correct" direction?

Did you actually read his post or just skim it?  He talked about clockwise and counter clockwise specifically in reference to loops, as well as pointing out that "every layout is a little different and may require different solutions."

 

Lastspikemike
If you use Atlas 220 controllers there is no "main line" to have default polarity

The "mainline" when using Atlas 220 controllers is whatever is connected to the right-hand side outputs of the controller.

 

Lastspikemike
If you use fully isolated blocks with independent polarity control (DPDT to each block) for each block which block is the main line? 

 

You generally don't have independent direction control for each block (for each block on the mainline the direction is controlled by the cab currently selected, not an independent direction switch for that block), you have direction control for each cab and each reversing section, but again "every layout is a little different and may require different solutions."

 

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Posted by Ablebakercharlie on Saturday, June 12, 2021 1:44 PM

jjdamnit
  • Another option would be to use terminal strips (A.K.A. terminal blocks or barrier strips). These come in "sizes" from 2- to 10-terminals.
  • To energize the entire strip you can fabricate jumpers from spade connectors and short pieces of wire or buy jumpers made of solid metal to connect the terminals.

  • From there it's a matter of running wires from the lugs (screw terminals) on the terminal strip to the track section. 

Before converting my 4' X 8' pike to DCC I had 16 control blocks (4 atlas controllers) with only a single "negative" common.

Because of the size of my pike I found 20 AWG wire sufficient for the power feeds for both the common and blocks.

For the turnouts I used a separate power source connected to two Capacitive Discharge Units through Atlas switch control boxes (#56). But that's another post.

Keep the questions coming, update us on your progress, and...

Hope this helps.

 

 

Hello All,

Thanks very much everyone for your input re my wiring question!  Much appreciated. 

The first response by jjdamnit addressed my main issue re the Atlas 215 selectors.  I want to take the approach of wiring each block as a stand alone to make trouble shooting easier.   Because something always goes wrong with wiring, right? Or is it just me?  :)   I couldn't visualize using the terminal strips for the second leg (that's the correct term, right?) for all the blocks but now it seems simple.

 I got the Atlas selectors as I thought they were a reliable means for blocking but it sounds like there are some better alternatives.  Since I bought them I am going to go with them for now but will start researching alternatives.  

Sheldon, if you read this, I would be interested in your approach to DC wiring.   I would love to do a wireless set up but internet searches have not come up with success.

Once again,  thanks everyone.  I enjoy reading the spirited debate on layout preferences and am continually amazed by the wealth of information that can be obtained from the membership by simply just posting a question!

 

charles

 

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Posted by RR_Mel on Saturday, June 12, 2021 1:55 PM

Charles

Good choice, Sheldon is the goto guy for DC wiring.


Mel
 
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, June 12, 2021 2:10 PM

RR_Mel
Good choice, Sheldon is the goto guy for DC wiring.

Yes +1.

-Kevin

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Saturday, June 12, 2021 4:32 PM

Ablebakercharlie

 

 
jjdamnit
  • Another option would be to use terminal strips (A.K.A. terminal blocks or barrier strips). These come in "sizes" from 2- to 10-terminals.
  • To energize the entire strip you can fabricate jumpers from spade connectors and short pieces of wire or buy jumpers made of solid metal to connect the terminals.

  • From there it's a matter of running wires from the lugs (screw terminals) on the terminal strip to the track section. 

Before converting my 4' X 8' pike to DCC I had 16 control blocks (4 atlas controllers) with only a single "negative" common.

Because of the size of my pike I found 20 AWG wire sufficient for the power feeds for both the common and blocks.

For the turnouts I used a separate power source connected to two Capacitive Discharge Units through Atlas switch control boxes (#56). But that's another post.

Keep the questions coming, update us on your progress, and...

Hope this helps.

 

 

 

 

Hello All,

Thanks very much everyone for your input re my wiring question!  Much appreciated. 

The first response by jjdamnit addressed my main issue re the Atlas 215 selectors.  I want to take the approach of wiring each block as a stand alone to make trouble shooting easier.   Because something always goes wrong with wiring, right? Or is it just me?  :)   I couldn't visualize using the terminal strips for the second leg (that's the correct term, right?) for all the blocks but now it seems simple.

 I got the Atlas selectors as I thought they were a reliable means for blocking but it sounds like there are some better alternatives.  Since I bought them I am going to go with them for now but will start researching alternatives.  

Sheldon, if you read this, I would be interested in your approach to DC wiring.   I would love to do a wireless set up but internet searches have not come up with success.

Once again,  thanks everyone.  I enjoy reading the spirited debate on layout preferences and am continually amazed by the wealth of information that can be obtained from the membership by simply just posting a question!

 

charles

 

 

Charles, I would be happy to help. My first question is do you have a track plan you can post or email?

Then I would like to know a little about what you would like to be able to do, how you would like to operate your layout.

If you know how the private message feature works on this forum, and yours is working, feel free to send me a private measage.

Sheldon

    

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Posted by gregc on Saturday, June 12, 2021 4:33 PM

Lastspikemike
To understand my remark you need to understand that the two reversing switches in the 220 just always be set to center off when ganging the 220's. Terminal C is then not connected in any 220 in the gang except the last one.

i think what you're trying to say is that if the cab reversing switch is set to the center position, the C terminal is unconnected.

i don't believe the cab reversing section is intended to be set to the center.

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

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Posted by Ablebakercharlie on Saturday, June 12, 2021 4:57 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

 

 
Ablebakercharlie

 

 
jjdamnit
  • Another option would be to use terminal strips (A.K.A. terminal blocks or barrier strips). These come in "sizes" from 2- to 10-terminals.
  • To energize the entire strip you can fabricate jumpers from spade connectors and short pieces of wire or buy jumpers made of solid metal to connect the terminals.

  • From there it's a matter of running wires from the lugs (screw terminals) on the terminal strip to the track section. 

Before converting my 4' X 8' pike to DCC I had 16 control blocks (4 atlas controllers) with only a single "negative" common.

Because of the size of my pike I found 20 AWG wire sufficient for the power feeds for both the common and blocks.

For the turnouts I used a separate power source connected to two Capacitive Discharge Units through Atlas switch control boxes (#56). But that's another post.

Keep the questions coming, update us on your progress, and...

Hope this helps.

 

 

 

 

Hello All,

Thanks very much everyone for your input re my wiring question!  Much appreciated. 

The first response by jjdamnit addressed my main issue re the Atlas 215 selectors.  I want to take the approach of wiring each block as a stand alone to make trouble shooting easier.   Because something always goes wrong with wiring, right? Or is it just me?  :)   I couldn't visualize using the terminal strips for the second leg (that's the correct term, right?) for all the blocks but now it seems simple.

 I got the Atlas selectors as I thought they were a reliable means for blocking but it sounds like there are some better alternatives.  Since I bought them I am going to go with them for now but will start researching alternatives.  

Sheldon, if you read this, I would be interested in your approach to DC wiring.   I would love to do a wireless set up but internet searches have not come up with success.

Once again,  thanks everyone.  I enjoy reading the spirited debate on layout preferences and am continually amazed by the wealth of information that can be obtained from the membership by simply just posting a question!

 

charles

 

 

 

 

Charles, I would be happy to help. My first question is do you have a track plan you can post or email?

Then I would like to know a little about what you would like to be able to do, how you would like to operate your layout.

If you know how the private message feature works on this forum, and yours is working, feel free to send me a private measage.

Sheldon

 

Sheldon,

Thank you very much for responding.  I have enjoyed reading your posts since I have been "lurking" these past couple months and have wanted to get your input re a DC layout setup since that is your set-up choice vs DCC.  

Now I must sheepishly admit I can't figure out how to send a PM - I looked in the profile / settings section and couldn't figure it out.  Can you or someone else offer assistance?  I would be happy to post /send the layoutplan and track pics for critique.

With much appreciation,

 

charles

  • Member since
    March 2021
  • From: Vermont
  • 34 posts
Posted by Ablebakercharlie on Saturday, June 12, 2021 5:24 PM

Here is a pic of the layout - that is if I did the correct things.....

DC Train Layout

  • Member since
    February 2007
  • From: Christiana, TN
  • 1,753 posts
Posted by CSX Robert on Saturday, June 12, 2021 7:12 PM

There actually is a minor error in the schematic, but it's pretty obvious how it's supposed to be.  In the cab B reversing switch, one of the connections to the C circuit is missing.

Lastspikemike
In particular, the circuit to  the "common rail" output from the same polarity input is not shown

The circuit to the common rail output from the "same polarity input" is not shown because the common rail output is not necessarily wired to the same polarity and is not wired directly to the cab inputs.  The common goes after the cab direction switch because which polarity of each input it goes to depends on the direction switch for that input.

Lastspikemike
Describe the line on the schematic that shows how the common rail power flows from either Cab A or B input terminal through the 220 to power the input terminal on the ganged 220.

When the cab direction switches are in the center position, cab A and B inputs are connected directly to cab A and B outputs, just as the schematic shows.  There is no connection to common because you cannot pick it up until after the direction switches in the last 220, before that you don't know which side of each cab circuit is common.

Lastspikemike
The inner of the two input terminals flow though the C common rail connection according to the schematics

No they don't.  The common rail connection goes to the two cab direction switches and whether or not it is connected to an input and if so which one is determnined by the direction switches.

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