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KATO Unitrack basic question: turnout accessories

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KATO Unitrack basic question: turnout accessories
Posted by TWaters on Tuesday, August 11, 2009 6:40 PM

I am confused about these two of KATO's unitrack turnout accessories.

24-840 turnout control switch

24-842 DC converter  for 24-840

-------------------

OK. Lets say I build a unitrack layout that uses only one #6 turnout. Do I need any of the two above items to operate that turnout?

 Next. For a layout with ten #6 turnouts. How many (if any) do I need of the two above items to conveniently operate the turnouts on the layout?

(Sorry for simple question but I cannot seem to find basic documentation explaining this on KATO's website).

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Posted by SD Fan on Tuesday, August 11, 2009 8:50 PM

First off, the control switch hooks up to your turnout, which then hooks to the AC terminals on your powerpack ( DC only, i have no idea about DCC). As for the DC converter, if you are going to hook it up to the AC terminals, you dont need it. What you need is product #24-841, which is the turnout extension cord. This is use for when you have to make long distance runs with the wire. Also, to hook it up, i think you need the product #24-843, or the adaptor chord, to hook up to said wires to the powerpack. As for the one turnout plan, you realy dont need any of this if the turnout is close enough to where you can feel that you could operate it manualy(the little black sliding thingy on the side of the turnout). But if is far away, here is what i think you might need(for DC, seeing that is what i am using) 1 turnout control switch, 1 adaptor chord, and if you want it, a turnout extension chord. And for the ten turnout plan, you may not need all of this if you could operate it manualy, but here goes, 10 turnout controls, 1 adaptor chord, and i think 10 turnout extension chords. Again, i stress that you may not need all of these things if you could operate the turnouts manualy. It will save a lot of money. And there might be somethings is missed, but im still trying to get all of this myself.

I sure hoped this helped.

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself, or maybe ballasting some track.
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Posted by TWaters on Tuesday, August 11, 2009 11:35 PM

Thanks SD, much appreciated. Yes, I'm using DC too. And there will be no manual switches, all remote.

"First off, the control switch hooks up to your turnout, which then hooks to the AC terminals on your powerpack ( DC only, i have no idea about DCC)...And for the ten turnout plan, you may not need all of this if you could operate it manualy, but here goes, 10 turnout controls, 1 adaptor chord, and i think 10 turnout extension chords".

 

KATO control switches are about $8 each.

With my other layout, the 9 PECO turnouts were all just wired with a long roll of common hook up wire and a generic radio shack switch panel with lots of momentary push buttons (two for each turnout), and spade connectors crimped on the wires to hook to powerpack. No PECO switches or harnesses were necessary. All wiring ran under the plywood baseboard of course.

 

Is there some special circuitry on the KATO switches (which attach to the turnouts) that I have to use the KATO branded switches? And their extension cord? And their adaptor if I do not use a KATO brand power pack?

Thanks again for your help!

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Posted by CSX Robert on Wednesday, August 12, 2009 10:29 AM
SD Fan
...As for the DC converter, if you are going to hook it up to the AC terminals, you dont need it...
If you are going to hook up to the AC terminals, then you DO need the DC converter. The Kato turnouts work off of DC, and the DC converter rectifies the AC voltage to get DC. You would only need one DC converter for all of your turnouts.
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Posted by CSX Robert on Wednesday, August 12, 2009 11:03 AM
TWaters
Is there some special circuitry on the KATO switches (which attach to the turnouts) that I have to use the KATO branded switches? And their extension cord?
No. The Kato turnout control operates like a DPDT momentary toggle. The Kato turnouts operate off of a DC voltage. To reverse the throw of the turnout, you reverse the polarity of the voltage, but you have to make sure that you only apply the voltage for a brief amount of time or you will burn out the coil in the turnout. You could do this with a DPDT momentary toggle switch or with a normal DPDT toggle switch with a momentary push button in line with it. There are also a couple of ways to use two pushbuttons per turnout and no toggle switch by using either a bipolar power supply or an AC powr supply and a couple of steering diodes. Yet another method uses a standard SPDT toggle and one capacitor per turnout but no pushbuttons. I can show you the circuit for any of these methods if you are interested.
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Posted by TWaters on Wednesday, August 12, 2009 12:39 PM

 Thanks, guys.

I'm interested in a diagram for the method using normal DPDT toggle switch (without any center OFF posistion) and a momentary push button in line with it. That way I can look at the toggle at any time and see which position the turnout is presently in.

Are 12 volt DC power supplies OK to use? There are many of these, including Radio Shack, and I already have a heavy one not in use which has I think about three amps or so rated.

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Posted by CSX Robert on Wednesday, August 12, 2009 5:56 PM

Kato turnout circuit

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Posted by Trainguy1988 on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 9:57 PM

Hello,

I have a similar quandary regarding electric turnouts for my DCC-powered Kato Unitrack layout.  I purchased some Kato DC Turnout Machines for the manual switches already on my layout, as I wanted to be able to change the switches from one location.  I found on other forums, however, that it's not a good idea to power accessories like motorized switches with a DCC controller, so I purchased the Turnout Control Switches as well.

I looked at some of the Kato wiring diagrams and saw that I can connect up to eight Turnout Control Switches to a single Kato Accessory Power Supply, but also saw that I would need to purchase a DC converter to convert the AC from the power supply to DC for the motorized switches.  I'm wondering, then, if I can connect the DC Converter(s) to the end of the row of Turnout Control Switches attached to the Accessory Power Supply.

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Posted by OldEngineman on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 10:24 PM

Trainguy wrote: "I'm wondering, then, if I can connect the DC Converter(s) to the end of the row of Turnout Control Switches attached to the Accessory Power Supply."

That's an old thread that you dug up, but I'll reply.

I use an old MRC DC power pack to power my Kato turnouts. I connect the 15vac output to the Kato 24-842 dc converter. The converter is connected to about a dozen of the 24-840 switch levers. Works fine.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Thursday, February 11, 2021 1:41 AM

OldEngineman
I use an old MRC DC power pack to power my Kato turnouts. I connect the 15vac output to the Kato 24-842 dc converter. The converter is connected to about a dozen of the 24-840 switch levers. Works fine.

That will work perfectly.

The Kato switch machines use DC that is reversed, and momentarily activated by their turnout control levers. These control levers are an amazingly well thought out way to control the turnouts.

Unless you really know what you are doing, it is best to simply use the Kato controllers for these switch machine controller levers.

-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 MARTIN STATION on Thursday, February 11, 2021 1:20 PM

 I have a Kato power pack and have 3 powered switches, 2 #6 and 1 #4. If you have the Kato power pack the Kato Turnout Control Switch #24-840 just snaps into the side of the power pack and any additional turnout control switches just snap into the side of each other. I do have a DC coverter but I only use it to operate my Kato Automatic 3 Color Signal and it to snaps into the side of my last turnout control.

 As far as the question about using the turnouts with DCC, you may want to check out Mike Fifer's "N Scale Trains How to Channel" on YouTube. Mike covers just about everything dealing with Kato track.

Ralph 

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Posted by wjstix on Thursday, February 11, 2021 2:43 PM

The Kato switch controller does that already, and you don't need a separate push button. When you throw the lever on the controller, it sends a pulse of DC power to the turnout. The lever then stays in that position, showing which way the switch is thrown.

Also, the controllers snap together, so you can power one switch controller and snap several of them together without needing to wire each one to power separately, just to the turnout.

BTW I use Kato Unitrack on my layout. My mainline switches are No. 6 powered switches, and since I use DCC I just connect each one up to a stationary decoder (Switch-Kat from NCE) so I can throw the turnout with my radio walk-around controller from anywhere in the basement. (You can also hook up the Kato controller, but so far at least I have found no need to do so.)

Stix
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Posted by Trainguy1988 on Monday, February 22, 2021 10:26 AM

My apologies for the late response, and thank you for your help :).  I plan on having my switches lined up in a row, with the 24-842 DC Converter on one end and the 22-081 Accessory Power Supply (which will be plugged into the 22-083 16v AC adapter) on the other.  I may still be somewhat confused, however, as I see that the 24-842 can snap onto the row of Turnout Control Switches yet also has a cord coming from it.  I'm wondering, then, if this cord should connect to the track with a Terminal Unijoiner, or if it should somehow plug back into the Accessory Power Supply.

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Posted by wjstix on Monday, February 22, 2021 10:53 AM

The controllers for the switches have nothing to do with the track or track power. You don't connect anything up to the tracks.

The 24-842 is the DC converter for non-Kato power packs. The two wires coming out of it connect to the AC Accesory outputs of a regular DC power pack, or to some other 12-16V AC power source. It then snaps into the left side of a 24-840 Turnout Control Switch. The 24-840 is then connected by two wires to the electric turnout with the turnout cable (24-84TC).

The 24-840s are designed to snap together, so by connecting one to the power on it's left side, you can then snap several other 24-840s to the right and power them all from the one connection. Each 24-840 would then just need to be connected to the turnout you want it to control.

Stix
  • Member since
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Posted by seacoast on Sunday, March 14, 2021 11:03 PM

If you have msny switches uyou vs  try ksto part #24-827 – 3-Way Extension Cord plugs 3 I go one .

George
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Posted by BumpyJack68 on Sunday, August 8, 2021 12:09 PM

 

Thanks to CSXRobert for that wonderful diagram, and Martin Station for mentioning Mike Fifers store. (I am not affiliated with Mike in any way) To add to it, the Momentary push button is not necessary if you use DPDT momentary toggle switch found here;

 

 

https://www.amazon.com/Twidec-Toggle-Position-Waterproof-MTS-203/dp/B07LBN6DKX/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?dchild=1&keywords=mini+dpdt+on-off-on+switch&qid=1628440643&s=industrial&sr=1-1-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUEzUEZJNkI5Tk9GWkU5JmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNDg5ODE4M0FZSjA4NjFaMDhUSCZlbmNyeXB0ZWRBZElkPUEwMDc0NjgxSEFEWFBYU09XUTQmd2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9hdGYmYWN0aW9uPWNsaWNrUmVkaXJlY3QmZG9Ob3RMb2dDbGljaz10cnVl

 That has got to be the longest web addy ever! 10 switches for the price of 1 Kato switch! I've been using them for years on n scale and HO with no problems and they look great on control panels. Here is a link to wiring the toggles;

https://www.fiferhobby.com/how-to-make-kato-turnout-control-switches/

Hope I'm not breaking any rules?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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