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Peco Insulfrog should I pass?

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, August 3, 2021 2:48 PM

Doughless
No joints looks nice.

Yes they do.

-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 richhotrain on Tuesday, August 3, 2021 2:55 PM

Lastspikemike

The Unifrog is also all live except for that tiny frog point. Restoring power routing and treating the turnout like an electrofrog could solve that issue.  

Solve?

Isn't a dead frog a feature of the Unifrog?

 

Alton Junction

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Posted by betamax on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 4:23 AM

The entire frog is dead, just like the Insulfrog. You can see the Unifrog wiring here. The difference is you can power the frog, or not. Plus you don't have to do it immediately, and you can decide how to control it.

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 5:29 AM

betamax

The entire frog is dead, just like the Insulfrog. You can see the Unifrog wiring here. The difference is you can power the frog, or not. Plus you don't have to do it immediately, and you can decide how to control it. 

Exactly, so there is no issue to solve. The dead frog is a feature of the Unifrog.

As Peco points out, "The wiring of these new turnouts is a development of both the Insulfrog and Electrofrog designs. For current users of the Electrofrog or Insulfrog versions of our turnouts the new Unifrog gives modellers the best of both worlds. As supplied, the turnout is wired completely “live”, except for the frog tip and wing rails, and can be used straight out of the packet without any further modification (and so behaves like an Insulfrog)".

Rich

Alton Junction

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 7:57 AM

The Insulfrog is quite different to the Unifrog. If you compare the frog sizes you'll see how the shorting issue is real. Peco decided to make the Unifrog frog too small for some locomotives. Unifrog also does not power route, all rails are live except the very tip of the frog. 

 I have experienced it and have a number of insulfrogs the same locomotive traverses easily but stalls on the Unifrog. You can see the shorting sparks. Well, now you can't because I traded the locomotive for a supposedly identical Proto 2000 SW9/1200 although I have yet to test that on a unifrog turnout. Two other SW9 we have do not stall on the Unifrog. 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 7:59 AM

richhotrain

 

 
Lastspikemike

The Unifrog is also all live except for that tiny frog point. Restoring power routing and treating the turnout like an electrofrog could solve that issue.  

 

 

Solve?

 

Isn't a dead frog a feature of the Unifrog?

 

 

Yes, but it's tiny compared to the Insulfrog frog. That was a gamble too far for Peco. They relied on locomotive wheel profiles being more precisely made than some of them actually are. 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 8:11 AM

betamax
You can see the Unifrog wiring here.

I think that should pretty well answer any unifrog questions.

Thank you for that link.

-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 Lastspikemike on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 8:41 AM

What the diagram doesn't show is how close together the live frog rails are. The coloured diagram gives an inaccurate impression of the small size of the actual dead frog. The Unifrog is more like an electrofrog in actual use.

If you like insulfrogs then buy up what you think you may need. The Unifrog doesn't quite do the same job.

Alyth Yard

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 8:45 AM

richhotrain
Exactly, so there is no issue to solve. The dead frog is a feature of the Unifrog. As Peco points out, "The wiring of these new turnouts is a development of both the Insulfrog and Electrofrog designs.

Yes +1.

I do not see an issue here either.

-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 Lastspikemike on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 1:38 PM

I've seen the issue. It really happens. Peco made the Unifrog frog too short, or, more accurately they drew the frog rails just a tiny bit further than they oughta and the insulating gap is just that bit narrower than on the insulfrog. As I suggest. If you like the Insulfrog  features buy what you can, they are no longer made.

Alyth Yard

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 1:46 PM

richhotrain
The dead frog is a feature of the Unifrog.

And as far as I know, you cannot get a short on a dead frog!

Laugh

-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 betamax on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 4:13 PM

I guess no one bothers to read...

The shorting on the frog is an issue Peco knows about, it isn't their fault as it does not show up on NEM standard wheels. It is an issue with RP-25 wheels. 

Peco has indicated that they are aware, and are investigating making changes to the tooling to reduce the chance of an NMRA spec wheel bridging across the two rails. So when the existing tooling wears out, the replacements may be modified to correct this issue.

 

Tags: Peco , Unifrog
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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 4:19 PM

Lastspikemike

I've seen the issue. It really happens. Peco made the Unifrog frog too short, or, more accurately they drew the frog rails just a tiny bit further than they oughta and the insulating gap is just that bit narrower than on the insulfrog. As I suggest. If you like the Insulfrog  features buy what you can, they are no longer made.

 

The "issue" that I was referring to was your statement that the dead frog on the Unifrog was a problem that could be solved.

Lastspikemike

The Unifrog is also all live except for that tiny frog point. Restoring power routing and treating the turnout like an electrofrog could solve that issue.  

 I don't see the dead frog as an issue if a user wants the Unifrog to act like an Insulfrog.

Alton Junction

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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 4:22 PM

betamax

I guess no one bothers to read...

Relax. Everyone has "bothered" to read that statement from Peco. We are talking about two different things here - - a dead frog and the possibility of shorting on tightly converging rails of opposite polarity.

 

Alton Junction

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Thursday, August 5, 2021 8:22 AM

richhotrain

 

 
Lastspikemike

I've seen the issue. It really happens. Peco made the Unifrog frog too short, or, more accurately they drew the frog rails just a tiny bit further than they oughta and the insulating gap is just that bit narrower than on the insulfrog. As I suggest. If you like the Insulfrog  features buy what you can, they are no longer made.

 

 

 

The "issue" that I was referring to was your statement that the dead frog on the Unifrog was a problem that could be solved.

 

 

 
Lastspikemike

The Unifrog is also all live except for that tiny frog point. Restoring power routing and treating the turnout like an electrofrog could solve that issue.  

 

 

 I don't see the dead frog as an issue if a user wants the Unifrog to act like an Insulfrog.

 

In which post do I make that statement? 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, August 5, 2021 8:25 AM

I just cited it in my most recent reply.

Alton Junction

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Thursday, August 5, 2021 6:08 PM

richhotrain

I just cited it in my most recent reply.

 

Your more recent post does not refer to any post of mine. 

The citation is what I'm looking for. You did not find a quote as far as I can see. A citation reference has to refer to the words you say I used, not your interpretation of my words. 

At no point have I written what you say I have written.

If you are intent on contradicting me (as another member seems to be making his life's ambition judging from the number and timing of his attempts) you must  quote exactly what I wrote or the attempt at contradiction just falls flat. 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Thursday, August 5, 2021 6:26 PM

With the  Unifrog Peco tried  to duplicate the performance of the Electrofrog turnout with an insulated frog and went too far in making the insulated frog too short. This is obvious if you compare the Unifrog frog to the Insulfrog frog. Clearly Peco modified the Insulfrog to create Unifrog. 

The Unifrog frog rails are a fraction longer than on the Insulfrog. The insulating gap between the frog rails is accordingly narrower. The actual frog in the Unifrog is not relevant to the problem. Powering the frog on a Unifrog would not solve the shorting issue.

Treating the Insulfrog as if it were an Electrofrog would work to solve this shorting problem only if power routing were also to be restored. Powering the frog without restoring power routing would make the problem worse not better. In fact the new frog is so short you would never need to power it. Peco included the frog power  wire so the Electrofrog fans wouldn't go nuts on them. 

Had Peco just used the Insulfrog frog but made the same length of the frog tip in metal as in the new Unifrog then all would be well but they went a half mm too far in shortening the insulation gap created by the new frog design. Why they decided to do that is a mystery. The Insulfrog tooling already gave them the frog rail lengths they needed. The Electrofrog tooling was presumably discarded entirely. 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, August 5, 2021 7:24 PM

Lastspikemike

With the  Unifrog Peco tried  to duplicate the performance of the Electrofrog turnout with an insulated frog and went too far in making the insulated frog too short. This is obvious if you compare the Unifrog frog to the Insulfrog frog. Clearly Peco modified the Insulfrog to create Unifrog. 

The Unifrog frog rails are a fraction longer than on the Insulfrog. The insulating gap between the frog rails is accordingly narrower. The actual frog in the Unifrog is not relevant to the problem. Powering the frog on a Unifrog would not solve the shorting issue.

Treating the Insulfrog as if it were an Electrofrog would work to solve this shorting problem only if power routing were also to be restored. Powering the frog without restoring power routing would make the problem worse not better. In fact the new frog is so short you would never need to power it. Peco included the frog power  wire so the Electrofrog fans wouldn't go nuts on them. 

Had Peco just used the Insulfrog frog but made the same length of the frog tip in metal as in the new Unifrog then all would be well but they went a half mm too far in shortening the insulation gap created by the new frog design. Why they decided to do that is a mystery. The Insulfrog tooling already gave them the frog rail lengths they needed. The Electrofrog tooling was presumably discarded entirely. 

 

They tried to copy Atlas from an electrical standpoint, and screwed it up.

Sheldon

    

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Friday, August 6, 2021 10:53 AM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

 

 
Lastspikemike

With the  Unifrog Peco tried  to duplicate the performance of the Electrofrog turnout with an insulated frog and went too far in making the insulated frog too short. This is obvious if you compare the Unifrog frog to the Insulfrog frog. Clearly Peco modified the Insulfrog to create Unifrog. 

The Unifrog frog rails are a fraction longer than on the Insulfrog. The insulating gap between the frog rails is accordingly narrower. The actual frog in the Unifrog is not relevant to the problem. Powering the frog on a Unifrog would not solve the shorting issue.

Treating the Insulfrog as if it were an Electrofrog would work to solve this shorting problem only if power routing were also to be restored. Powering the frog without restoring power routing would make the problem worse not better. In fact the new frog is so short you would never need to power it. Peco included the frog power  wire so the Electrofrog fans wouldn't go nuts on them. 

Had Peco just used the Insulfrog frog but made the same length of the frog tip in metal as in the new Unifrog then all would be well but they went a half mm too far in shortening the insulation gap created by the new frog design. Why they decided to do that is a mystery. The Insulfrog tooling already gave them the frog rail lengths they needed. The Electrofrog tooling was presumably discarded entirely. 

 

 

 

They tried to copy Atlas from an electrical standpoint, and screwed it up.

Sheldon

 

I believe they did.

But only for the North American market.

The fix would be as easy as changing the size of the metal dead frog by a mm. But how much that would cost to retool is another matter.

Peco is still much better made than Atlas, the new updated versions of Atlas may respond to that challenge. Peco also can be more easily converted back to power routing by clipping two jumper wires. Plus the new continuous combined closure/points rails are a very nice improvement. 

Peco and Walthers now make the best turnouts in my opinion.

Alyth Yard

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Friday, August 6, 2021 11:12 AM

Lastspikemike

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL

 

 
Lastspikemike

With the  Unifrog Peco tried  to duplicate the performance of the Electrofrog turnout with an insulated frog and went too far in making the insulated frog too short. This is obvious if you compare the Unifrog frog to the Insulfrog frog. Clearly Peco modified the Insulfrog to create Unifrog. 

The Unifrog frog rails are a fraction longer than on the Insulfrog. The insulating gap between the frog rails is accordingly narrower. The actual frog in the Unifrog is not relevant to the problem. Powering the frog on a Unifrog would not solve the shorting issue.

Treating the Insulfrog as if it were an Electrofrog would work to solve this shorting problem only if power routing were also to be restored. Powering the frog without restoring power routing would make the problem worse not better. In fact the new frog is so short you would never need to power it. Peco included the frog power  wire so the Electrofrog fans wouldn't go nuts on them. 

Had Peco just used the Insulfrog frog but made the same length of the frog tip in metal as in the new Unifrog then all would be well but they went a half mm too far in shortening the insulation gap created by the new frog design. Why they decided to do that is a mystery. The Insulfrog tooling already gave them the frog rail lengths they needed. The Electrofrog tooling was presumably discarded entirely. 

 

 

 

They tried to copy Atlas from an electrical standpoint, and screwed it up.

Sheldon

 

 

 

I believe they did.

But only for the North American market.

The fix would be as easy as changing the size of the metal dead frog by a mm. But how much that would cost to retool is another matter.

Peco is still much better made than Atlas, the new updated versions of Atlas may respond to that challenge. Peco also can be more easily converted back to power routing by clipping two jumper wires. Plus the new continuous combined closure/points rails are a very nice improvement. 

Peco and Walthers now make the best turnouts in my opinion.

 

I will explain this one more time, the only thing Atlas is updating is their code 100 product, the design of which predates their code 83 line. They have not announced any plans to update the code 83 product in any way.

I undersatand what you and others see as the "quality" differences between Atlas and PECO. For me they are not quality differences at all. All my Atlas turnouts work fine.

And I have purchased some recent production Atlas turnouts in preperation for the new layout, and I can find no difference in quality control, production tolerances, or design and tooling that are of any concern or consequence.

Since I don't want little throwbar springs, I do want feed thru wiring with frogs that don't short out wheels, I want the reversable throw bar, and have a wiring system already designed to power frogs, I will spend that extra money elsewhere.

And, I also like the longer, better geometry, no matter how slight the difference......

Sheldon

    

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Friday, August 6, 2021 2:55 PM

Peco Code 83 have double ended throwbars, no need to turn them around. If desired you can clip off the "other" end.

Throwbar springs come out fairly easily. Reinstalling these springs is more difficult. Peco throwbar springs work better than Walthers and much better than ME springs.

Peco have feed through wiring under the frog. You can see these to clip them if you wish, making the electrical wiring like an ME turnout. You can add stock rail to closure rail jumpers as there are spaces under the ties at the right spots to accommodate them. Unifrog come with these factory installed. Easier to snip if there than to solder if not there.

Atlas Code 83 Mark IV or Super switches are ok but the points are pretty flimsy.

I have all four brands. Peco still best made with Walthers close behind.

Insulfrog are a better choice than Unifrog for our locomotives although the great majority of our market locomotives work fine on the Unifrog frog rails. 

Alyth Yard

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Friday, August 6, 2021 3:42 PM

Mike, the PECO throw bar is a problem for me on every level even after the little spring is gone. It is not long enough for my manual ground throw system using slide switches.

You can say the points are flimsy all you want, but considering all the people I know who have had trouble free operation with them for two or three decades, they must be ok.

You can stop explaining to me how they are wired, I knew how they were wired before you were aware of their existance.

Sheldon 

    

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Friday, August 6, 2021 5:59 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL

Mike, the PECO throw bar is a problem for me on every level even after the little spring is gone. It is not long enough for my manual ground throw system using slide switches.

You can say the points are flimsy all you want, but considering all the people I know who have had trouble free operation with them for two or three decades, they must be ok.

You can stop explaining to me how they are wired, I knew how they were wired before you were aware of their existance.

Sheldon 

 

Obviously I'm not explaining anything to you.

I post information I think may be useful to others. 

Alyth Yard

Canada

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