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Atlas Mark V turnout

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Tuesday, March 12, 2024 3:16 PM

Wow!

    

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Posted by maxman on Tuesday, March 12, 2024 11:45 AM

Geared Steam

 richhotrain

   Two, off topic comments, made in passing, wind up leading to unnecessary debates, arguments and put-downs. 

Rich

 

  ....and yet it continues to grow (mold that is) Big Smile

 

Okay, you guys just won't leave this alone, will you.

Since you seem to be looking for a culprit, I will confess.

I read posts from the latest to the earliest.  So when I starting reading this thread I missed the fact that there were about 25 posts prior to mine when the year changed from 2024 to 2021.  So if you wish to have a drawing and quartering, let me know time and date and I'll be sure to be prompt.

As far as the snarky or offending comment goes, as far as I can determine the other party said that he had purchased a particular appliance (in 2021, which I missed) and I stated that "Unfortunately not really GE anymore".  That apparently was the fuse that set off the explosion.  It easily could have been ignored.  Now if anyone really believes that statement was snarky, attacking, and/or offensive in anyway, you can schedule a firing squad and I'll arrive on time for that.  You can do that either prior to or after the drawing and quartering.

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Posted by Geared Steam on Tuesday, March 12, 2024 10:23 AM

richhotrain

   Two, off topic comments, made in passing, wind up leading to unnecessary debates, arguments and put-downs. 

Rich

 

 
 ....and yet it continues to grow (mold that is) Big Smile

"The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination."-Albert Einstein

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Sunday, March 10, 2024 8:07 AM

DigitalGriffin

.

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL

I guess it just bugs you that it is a foreign company? They can't take the factory home with them and if its making money why would they?

Sheldon 

 

 

George Oliver ran GE into the ground.  He's strategy was to constantly sell off subsidiaries to boost stock price (for which he owned considerable amounts of stock). When he did all the damage he could to GE, he took himself and his cronies to Johnson Controls where he's doing much of the same thing.

He's basically doing a Hunter.

That said every time you turn an industry over to a foreign entity you risk becoming a puppet to them.  This includes appliances and model trains.  We can't build ships fast enough because enough steel mills and ship yards have been put out of business by foreign subsidizing.   This leaves the USA disadvantaged when it comes to making new shells, destroyers and submarines.

But that strays into politics.  And I don't want to get into that here.

And yes yes I know building trains here is cost prohibitive.  But if you are going to mfg overseas, don't put all your eggs into one basket.  Use several countries.  Intel, WD and Seagate all do this.

 And I'm really not happy with Walters Buy Out of Life Like.  Not only do they not honor the lifetime warranties on proto, but they no longer do steam.  

BLI and Bachmann are the last great hold outs for good steam variety.  And while I like Bachmann as a company, they are going down the "cut quality to control cost" route.  Re releases of things like the 2-8:0 seems to be losing details.  I don't like mold on piping!

 

Don,

I'm not going to disagree, although I don't really know (or care much) about the detailed history of GE. I just know I should not have been attacked, years after a simple conversation with someone else, because a particular person is invested in what happened to GE.

I would likely agree with all those politics we need not talk about here. 

Now for a few things I do know about. 

Walthers did not "go looking" to buy LifeLike. After both the founders of LifeLike had passed, the family decided to sell the business. Not just the train business, but the whole business - Lifoam Industries - the inventor of the styrofoam cooler and one of the largest producers of styrofoam products. Read this, model trains caused the invention of the styrofoam cooler.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life-Like

No one interested in the styrofoam business wanted the train portion of the business - so Walthers saw the opportunity and stepped up. So "buyout" has a connotation that does not really apply in my mind.

Bachmann and the changes in there product - The Spectrum line and overall quality uplifting of Bachmann in the late 80's was the brainchild of Lee Riley. I knew Lee back when he worked at Pro Custom Hobbies in Baltimore. While not a member, he was known to frequent the Severna Park Model Railroad Club where I was a member.

I agree it is a little disappointing that after his retirement and sudden passing that they have moved way from the "Spectrum" level detail on a few items. I have a large roster of Bachmann steam, mostly Spectrum.

BUT, I have never been comfortable using the word "quality" to define how accurate or well detailed a model is. To me "quality" is how well it runs, how well it holds up, is it correctly assembled from good materials.

And by that definition, Bachmann quality is not going down.

Bachmann saw a change in the market, a new, younger, call them "semi-serious" crowd (I call them the facebook modelers) and at the same time saw some overall resistance to higher prices. As a company that has always offered products for ALL segments of this hobby, they adjusted their product line accordingly.

Specificly, their USRA 2-8-2 & 4-6-2, the Berkshire, the upgraded GS4 and Niagria, as well as others, all reflect pretty good detail, including road specific changes and good, Spectrum level, mechanicals while holding prices down a bit. But agreed, not Spectrum level detail.

I will still take a Bachmann C&O or NKP 2-8-4 with lots of road specific details over the MTH version with the wrong dome placement for C&O any day.

I don't think the 2-8-0 has lost any details, the 4-6-0 did, no question.

And the models I listed above lack stuff like tender grab rails, etc. Easily added if desired.

I only have a few BLI locos, all steam, but I am not impressed to consider them better than Bachmann - just more expensive. Their USRA 2-8-2 and 4-6-2 not only have molded on detail - but have the same generic boiler on all of them. At least Bachmann managed correct B&O headlight/bell locations, correct trailing truck options, nearly correct tender variations, etc.

I have LifeLike steam, just the 2-8-8-2's and the 0-8-0's. And lets face it, they only made 5 different locos? Little secret about LifeLike and Bachmann, it was a friend of Lee Riley who headed up the Proto2000 line at LifeLike - I'm sure from things I know, that there was a gentlemans agreement there - you do mostly diesels and I will do mostly steam in the high end stuff......

Sheldon 

    

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Posted by DigitalGriffin on Sunday, March 10, 2024 5:55 AM

.

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

I guess it just bugs you that it is a foreign company? They can't take the factory home with them and if its making money why would they?

Sheldon 

 

George Oliver ran GE into the ground.  He's strategy was to constantly sell off subsidiaries to boost stock price (for which he owned considerable amounts of stock). When he did all the damage he could to GE, he took himself and his cronies to Johnson Controls where he's doing much of the same thing.

He's basically doing a Hunter.

That said every time you turn an industry over to a foreign entity you risk becoming a puppet to them.  This includes appliances and model trains.  We can't build ships fast enough because enough steel mills and ship yards have been put out of business by foreign subsidizing.   This leaves the USA disadvantaged when it comes to making new shells, destroyers and submarines.

But that strays into politics.  And I don't want to get into that here.

Don - Specializing in layout DC->DCC conversions

Modeling C&O transition era and steel industries There's Nothing Like Big Steam!

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Posted by DigitalGriffin on Sunday, March 10, 2024 5:42 AM

SeeYou190

Since the Mark V turnout is the newest offering by Atlas, and introduced well into the DCC era, I doubt there would be any problems at all to worry about.

Overall, Atlas turnouts are very high quality.

-Kevin

 

 

Other than the near impossible to solder to the frog, or the fact it pops out. Then there are the points often separate from the tie bar.  And finally it doesn't conform to NMRA standards.  (But only fast tracks does)

 

Technically speaking Atlas tracks are more of a bargain and aren't as easy to break once set up.  But of the 20 or so I've laid, about 4 of them had some sort of issue.  (Other than soldering that frog which I have to use a 2-56 for.)

Don - Specializing in layout DC->DCC conversions

Modeling C&O transition era and steel industries There's Nothing Like Big Steam!

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Posted by Geared Steam on Friday, March 1, 2024 12:56 PM

Absolutley, I wire drops on all sides of turnouts, using Wegos. They are bullet proof.

 

"The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination."-Albert Einstein

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 29, 2024 9:11 PM

Texas Zephyr

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL

So, you have an emotional and financial investment in this.

No, your logic is flawed, I never said or implied it was "made by GE" - it simply carries that brand name.

Just like a GRAVELY rider plow came in a box that says GRAVELY, it was sold by a GRAVELY dealer, but it came from the Agri-Fab factory. I own two of them, they were built to GRAVELYS design specs. I don't care what factory they actually rolled out of.

And those yellow John Deere snow blowers come out of the same building that builds GRAVELY lawn care equipment.

There is likely no bigger rivalry in lawn care then GRAVELY and John Deere - why are some tractors green? So they can . . . . .  blah blah blah that no one really cares about

 

 

I see absolutely nothing has changed on this forum in the last 3+ years or so, and this a huge reminder of why I no longer come here. 

 

Well, if you are still reading, did you bother to read the whole thread? Two years after the fact I get a snarky comment about a simple statement and somehow my response to that bothers you?

I don't spend much time on here anymore either, but the little I do I'm not going to be poked at over an innocent comment from two years in the past without responding.

I've pretty much had my fill of the software that does not work, the ads, and non sense like this.

God forbid someone has a different opinion......

Sheldon   

    

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Posted by Texas Zephyr on Thursday, February 29, 2024 4:41 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

So, you have an emotional and financial investment in this.

No, your logic is flawed, I never said or implied it was "made by GE" - it simply carries that brand name.

Just like a GRAVELY rider plow came in a box that says GRAVELY, it was sold by a GRAVELY dealer, but it came from the Agri-Fab factory. I own two of them, they were built to GRAVELYS design specs. I don't care what factory they actually rolled out of.

And those yellow John Deere snow blowers come out of the same building that builds GRAVELY lawn care equipment.

There is likely no bigger rivalry in lawn care then GRAVELY and John Deere - why are some tractors green? So they can . . . . .  blah blah blah that no one really cares about

I see absolutely nothing has changed on this forum in the last 3+ years or so, and this a huge reminder of why I no longer come here. 

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Posted by jeffhergert on Monday, February 5, 2024 10:59 PM

I don't always follow the General Discussion Model Railroader forum, mostly the prototype forum portion.  I just came across this thread.  I'm somewhat familiar with the old Amana Refrigeration.  I grew up in the Amana's and had, and still have, family and friends who work there under Whirlpool.

Amana was owned by Raytheon until 1997.  They sold it to a holding company.  Around 2002 they sold it to Maytag.  Whirlpool acquired Maytag, and Amana, around 2008.  They kept the Amana plant open, but closed the Maytag plant in Newton IA.  Caloric and Speed Queen brands also became associated with Amana, but I forget the time line.  It's all Whirlpool now.

The Amana plant under Ratheon and into the Maytag era produced microwaves, refrigerators and freezers.  Amana air conditioners and furnaces were made in Tennessee.  Having been away for many years, I don't know what the original plant now produces.

There is a railroad connection in this.  The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific RR ceased operating in 1980, but the corporate structure survived.  In 1984 the company was reorganized into the Chicago-Pacific Corporation and became a holding company.  It eventually acquired some appliance manufacturers, notably the Hoover Vacuum Cleaner company.  In 1988, Maytag merged C-P Corporation to get the appliance lines they held.  In the 1990s, they had some setbacks which ultimately led to Whirlpool acquiring Maytag.

Jeff 

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Posted by zstripe on Friday, February 2, 2024 10:08 AM

richhotrain
This turn of events is very interesting. I had to re-read the entire thread to understand how GE became an issue in a thread about Atlas Mark V turnouts

Richie,

I did the same damn thing..........lolololol....I think We've been Munsened...

Take Care, Smile, Wink & Grin

Frank

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Posted by richhotrain on Friday, February 2, 2024 8:27 AM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

So why was it necessary to comment on something I posted over two years ago?

Sheldon  

This turn of events is very interesting. I had to re-read the entire thread to understand how GE became an issue in a thread about Atlas Mark V turnouts.

When the OP first revived this older thread, I immediately recognized it as such when he first posted again a few days ago. The entire current conversation has been about turnouts until, all of a sudden, the issue of GE ownership is raised. Say what? So, upon re-reading the entire thread, I see where you responded to Pruitt's off-topic remark back in 2021 about appliances. Fair enough.

But then that passing comment was unnecessarily revived in 2024. The guy making the revival did not realized it was from an old post. Fair enough. But, he could have left it there. Why continue a meaningless side conversation just to take shots at you?

This brings up two of my ongoing beefs about the forum. One, old threads should be locked. You can always provide a link to an old thread for reference, but outright revival leads to confusion and situations like this. Two, off topic comments, made in passing, wind up leading to unnecessary debates, arguments and put-downs. 

Rich

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Friday, February 2, 2024 5:31 AM

maxman

Sorry, I was confused.  Everything from the middle of page two seems to have been posted from January/February 2024.  Your responses always seem to include your life history, and they run together after awhile.

And the point I was trying to make was that just because it has a certain emblem on it does not mean that it was made by the same "original" company, even though made in the same "original" facility.

If it were I responding to my comment, I think I might have said "that's true", not several paragraphs of the same old same old.

Anyway, I'm done with this, and shall retire back to my assembled in USA Honda and 20 year old GE fridge.

 

 

OK, whatever.

    

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Posted by maxman on Friday, February 2, 2024 2:33 AM

Sorry, I was confused.  Everything from the middle of page two seems to have been posted from January/February 2024.  Your responses always seem to include your life history, and they run together after awhile.

And the point I was trying to make was that just because it has a certain emblem on it does not mean that it was made by the same "original" company, even though made in the same "original" facility.

If it were I responding to my comment, I think I might have said "that's true", not several paragraphs of the same old same old.

Anyway, I'm done with this, and shall retire back to my assembled in USA Honda and 20 year old GE fridge.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 10:04 PM

maxman

Sheldon, what bugs me is that you are Mr. Precise when you want to be but not so much when it suits yourself.  To use your logic, a television with a GE label on it is somehow still made by GE.

No, the fact that it is a foreign company does not bug me.  As a former GE employee it is irratating to see a once proud organization drawn, quartered, and dismantled by incompetent, greedy management with dubious objectives.  And so far as I can determine, no portion of the profits from the sale of these GE labeled items flows back to me as a shareholder.

 

So, you have an emotional and financial investment in this.

No, your logic is flawed, I never said or implied it was "made by GE" - it simply carries that brand name.

Just like a GRAVELY rider plow came in a box that says GRAVELY, it was sold by a GRAVELY dealer, but it came from the Agri-Fab factory. I own two of them, they were built to GRAVELYS design specs. I don't care what factory they actually rolled out of.

And those yellow John Deere snow blowers come out of the same building that builds GRAVELY lawn care equipment.

There is likely no bigger rivalry in lawn care then GRAVELY and John Deere - why are some tractors green? So they can hide in the grass while the red tractors do the work. What an irony that John Deere contracts one of its biggest competitors to make its garden tractor snow blowers. 

CRAFTSMAN is no longer owned by SEARS.

Ariens has owned GRAVELY since 1982.

Cummins Diesel owns ONAN.

Athearn is now owned by Horizon Hobby.

Walthers is now owns LifeLike/Proto2000.

Whirlpool now owns Maytag.

FORD owned controlling interest in MAZDA and VOLVO for a long time.

Stanley Black and Decker now owns half the power tool industry and nearly half the garden tractor business - MTD, Cub Cadet, etc (my uncle was a product engineer at B&D back when they did all that rght here in Baltimore).

BUT - plumbing and small engine giant KOHLER is still a privately held family company - that's my kind of company.

Companies, separate divisions of companies, brand names get bought and sold all the time. Products are made in factories not owned by the "brand name" on them all the time.

I will admit I'm emotionally invested in a few brands as a customer because of the good serivce I have received from their products and their customer support.

But my life time employment history only includes 4 days of employment by a large corporation. And it was/is a very big multi national company - Baltimore Air Coil - world leader in industrial cooling towers and heat exchangers.

It only took me 4 days to know that the corporate world was not the place for me.

Since that day at the tender age of 20 years old when I walked out of that place, the largest businesses I have ever worked for had maybe 35 or 40 employees. 

And for the greatest portion of my working life, I have been self employed.

At age 23 my father helped me start a business, I operated that business for 7 years. I was spoiled. That may have not been the right business, but I knew that being on my own was the right choice for me.

You started this conversation, I don't really care who's name is on the range - as long as it works for my needs, I get a reasonable service life from it, and reasonable customer support.

These companies have done that:

My favorite companies - FORD, GRAVELY, KOHLER, HP, WHILPOOL, SAMSUNG (electronics, not their junky appliances that cost too much), ATHEARN, BOWSER, INTERMOUNTAIN, BACHMANN, WALTHERS, PROTO2000 (original LifeLike).....

And yet hardly ANY of our model trains come from factories owned by the people who own the name on the box.......

If you have vested interest in your stock profits, you really don't want to hear my political views on big corporations.......

So why was it necessary to comment on something I posted over two years ago?

Sheldon 

 

    

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Posted by maxman on Thursday, February 1, 2024 8:48 PM

Sheldon, what bugs me is that you are Mr. Precise when you want to be but not so much when it suits yourself.  To use your logic, a television with a GE label on it is somehow still made by GE.

No, the fact that it is a foreign company does not bug me.  As a former GE employee it is irratating to see a once proud organization drawn, quartered, and dismantled by incompetent, greedy management with dubious objectives.  And so far as I can determine, no portion of the profits from the sale of these GE labeled items flows back to me as a shareholder.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 6:00 PM

maxman

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL
True, not owned by GE but actually an independent subsidiary Haier who also makes Cafe', Monogram and HotPoint.

 

Not exactly.  Haier is a Chinese company that bought GE's appliance business and the rights to use the GE name until 2050 something. 

 

Yes, but lots of companies own other companies and let them operate independently with little or no interference from the parent company.

Studebaker-Worthington owned a long list of companies in the 60's/70's, most hardly knew they were owned by someone. They owned GRAVELY, Clark Machine, ONAN and more. In the early 80's they began selling them off and desolved the Studebaker-Worthington holding company.

I guess it just bugs you that it is a foreign company? They can't take the factory home with them and if its making money why would they?

Sheldon 

    

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Posted by maxman on Thursday, February 1, 2024 4:19 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
True, not owned by GE but actually an independent subsidiary Haier who also makes Cafe', Monogram and HotPoint.

Not exactly.  Haier is a Chinese company that bought GE's appliance business and the rights to use the GE name until 2050 something. 

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 3:47 PM

maxman

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL
just bought a GE range, also always a good experiance over the years

 

Unfortunately not really GE anymore.

 

True, not owned by GE but actually an independent subsidiary Haier who also makes Cafe', Monogram and HotPoint.

That's how manufacturing works. Brand names are bought and sold, work is subed out to factories that have the right equipment.

Ariens, the snow blower people, who also own GRAVELY, make snowblowers for John Deere right next to the red and orange ones for their own brands.

GRAVELY sold riding tractors for 35 years that all used the same design snowplow - the GRAVELY factory never made a snow plow, they were built to GRAVELY specs by Agri-Fab.

Sears NEVER owned a factory to make anything in their whole existance - look at all the stuff that says SEARS, or CRAFTSMAN, or KENMORE. It all came from factories that also made other brands of the same types of items

Several of the "major" tool brands have always been involved in making CRAFTSMAN TOOLS.

MATCO TOOLS is the ONLY nationally recognized brand that actually owns a factory to make large tool boxes. Even Snap-On subs that out.

A very signifcant percentage of the screwdrivers you buy from any USA brand come from Vermont American.

Shall I go on?

Sheldon

    

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Posted by maxman on Thursday, February 1, 2024 2:59 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
just bought a GE range, also always a good experiance over the years

Unfortunately not really GE anymore.

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Posted by AEP528 on Thursday, February 1, 2024 1:11 PM

I've seen layouts where the block feeders went to terminal strips, which then connected to the DCC buss through the detector. Simple, neat, and the terminal strips were labelled to match the blocks.

Multi-cab DC layouts have multiple power busses instead of the one in DCC; one from each throttle to each control panel*, and one from each control panel to each block controlled by the panel.

* The words "control panel" can be replaced by "relay logic" or anything similar, the concept is the same.

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Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, February 1, 2024 1:03 PM

I will agree that if you use a hub and spoke wiring method and limit the runs to 40' that you may get away with fewer feeders assuming that you solder all of the track sections together, but that is a lot of soldering.

Rich

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Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, February 1, 2024 12:34 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

Rich. 

I get it. If that works stay with it.

On a layout the size of mine that would be around 1000 feeder drops........ or more......

But I would bet if the OP does anything close to what said, his layout will run just fine.

Sheldon

I believe that somewhere I have notes on how much track is used on my layout. My best estimate is a minimum of 800 feet, so probably closer to 900 feet and maybe as much as 1,000 feet. So, that would be about 300 sections of flex track. That would mean 300 pairs of feeders. Add to that number feeders for turnouts.

Rich

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 12:20 PM

No disagreement there. 

In the examples I gave earlier in this thread, existing DC layouts were successfully converted to DCC without dismantling the original block wiring. But rather by simply replacing the DC throttle/power pack with the DCC command station. 

So each section of track that was previously a DC block, now had a feed pretty much directly from the command station. Typical block lengths from 15' to as much as 40'.

But wire sizes were not increased, block controls were left in place and all set to the same throttle. No issues were observed over multiple years of DCC operation.

This suggests that soldered sections of track in this length range will work reliably with a single feeder as opposed to the every 6' mentality.

I have built DC layouts that filled 1000 sq ft rooms and wired them with a decentralized "hub and spoke" scheme that does NOT use toggle switches as the cab selector and my voltage readings are consistent everywhere on the layout.

And my throttles use full voltage pulse with speed control, so in some form there is 13.8 volts on the track any time a train is moving.

Sheldon 

 

    

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Posted by snjroy on Thursday, February 1, 2024 11:44 AM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

 

 
snjroy

DCC requires constant 14V power (minimum). I've read that this is better achieved with a bus and multiple feeders because track does not carry power as well as wires. I also solder most of my track, with some space for expansion. 

Simon

 

 

 

I have read all that too. But as described above, my real world experiance with 4-5 layouts belonging to friends says otherwise.

My DC layouts have used full voltage pulse width modulated speed control at 13.8 volts for years with single feeders to blocks as long as 60' with no issues.

Sheldon

 

With respect, I don't think that you can assess voltage the same way with DCC. From what I understand, under DC, you can just increase the throttle to compensate for higher resistance if a loco is at the other end of the layout. You can't do that under DCC. Well, you can with power boosters of course. 

Simon

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 11:28 AM

Rich. 

I get it. If that works stay with it.

On a layout the size of mine that would be around 1000 feeder drops........ or more......

But I would bet if the OP does anything close to what said, his layout will run just fine.

Sheldon

 

    

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Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, February 1, 2024 10:58 AM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
OK, that is better than using a Scotchloc like some guys do.  All the wires in your house are just twisted together (if it was done right). Contrary to novice practice, wire nuts do not make the connection, they are just a fast way to insulate the connection and offer some additional mechanical security.

So I hope you can see that since I have no need for a whole layout buss, soldering the rail joints makes more sense. 

85% of my wiring is built on the work bench and installed as modules spread around the layout, generally near each tower panel.

All the various control inputs, switch machine wiring, etc, is done with cat5 cable so the cables are easily tagged with their purpose.

The actual track power from the wireless receivers to the cab selector relay boards are #12. The short run from there to the track is #18 solid.

Sheldon 

I have no quarrel with your method, although you are DC and I am DCC. Back in 2004 when I built my first layout, I was clueless about buses and feeders. The guys in my LHS were my mentors, and they got me up and running. But, my first layout was plagued with voltage drops, power losses, failed connectivity. Over time, I substantially improved performance with what has become my preferred method of wiring. 

Rich

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, February 1, 2024 10:32 AM

richhotrain

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL
 
richhotrain 
 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL 
 
richhotrain

Sheldon, it was a way lot easier than you are imagining it to be. And total connectivity is assured by dropping feeders from every piece of track. A whole lot easier and faster than soldering.

Rich 

How do you join all those wires together?

Sheldon 

I don't. I connect each feeder to the bus which essentially follows the track underneath the layout. 

Rich 

Ok, but how do you attach your drops to the buss?

I don't have any use for a buss, I have blocks. Remember, signals require blocks, DC or DCC.

Sheldon 

 

 

Reactions may vary, but here goes.

 

I use 14 gauge solid copper wire for the bus and 20 gauge stranded copper wire for the feeders. Soldering feeders to solid wire is not as easy as soldering feeders to stranded bus wire. So, I have a tool that separates the plastic insulated jacket from the solid wire by about 3/4", enough space to wrap the stranded feeder wire tightly around the solid bus wire. No soldering required. Believe it or not, I have not ever had a single connection fail.

Rich

 

OK, that is better than using a Scotchloc like some guys do.  All the wires in your house are just twisted together (if it was done right). Contrary to novice practice, wire nuts do not make the connection, they are just a fast way to insulate the connection and offer some additional mechanical security.

So I hope you can see that since I have no need for a whole layout buss, soldering the rail joints makes more sense. 

85% of my wiring is built on the work bench and installed as modules spread around the layout, generally near each tower panel.

All the various control inputs, switch machine wiring, etc, is done with cat5 cable so the cables are easily tagged with their purpose.

The actual track power from the wireless receivers to the cab selector relay boards are #12. The short run from there to the track is #18 solid.

Sheldon

    

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 24,076 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, February 1, 2024 9:28 AM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
 
richhotrain 
 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL 
 
richhotrain

Sheldon, it was a way lot easier than you are imagining it to be. And total connectivity is assured by dropping feeders from every piece of track. A whole lot easier and faster than soldering.

Rich 

How do you join all those wires together?

Sheldon 

I don't. I connect each feeder to the bus which essentially follows the track underneath the layout. 

Rich 

Ok, but how do you attach your drops to the buss?

I don't have any use for a buss, I have blocks. Remember, signals require blocks, DC or DCC.

Sheldon 

Reactions may vary, but here goes.

I use 14 gauge solid copper wire for the bus and 20 gauge stranded copper wire for the feeders. Soldering feeders to solid wire is not as easy as soldering feeders to stranded bus wire. So, I have a tool that separates the plastic insulated jacket from the solid wire by about 3/4", enough space to wrap the stranded feeder wire tightly around the solid bus wire. No soldering required. Believe it or not, I have not ever had a single connection fail.

Rich

Alton Junction

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