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EdF

DCC the Track?

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EdF

I remember seeing somewhere an article on converting the track to be controlled by a decoder, instead of the locomotives.   I am thinking of doing this for a tram layout on my ttrak, so I could use one power system and throttle to control it all.  Anyone have thoughts on this approach?  Or know the article?

 

Thanks, Ed

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gavino200
2 hours ago, EdF said:

I remember seeing somewhere an article on converting the track to be controlled by a decoder, instead of the locomotives.   I am thinking of doing this for a tram layout on my ttrak, so I could use one power system and throttle to control it all.  Anyone have thoughts on this approach?  Or know the article?

 

Thanks, Ed

 

Basically the idea is that you wire a decoder to a pair of DCC feeder wires. That is connect a pair of DCC feeder wires to the black and red pickup wires of a decoder. Then you connect the orange and grey motor output wires of the decoder to the track. They become the feeder wires for your new pseudo DC track. Then you can control your DC loop with your DCC throttle. 

 

The output is a sort of pulse rather than real DC. Some motors don't respond well to this. "Solid core??" Not sure. But it's the kind of tiny motor that the Kato Unitram uses. Regular motors will be fine. 

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cteno4

I’ve tried this and it works. 6 or 7 years back I thought of doing this for our 25mm track streetcar setups and asked around. Folks said they had seen it done, so I got a used nce dcc throttle and played with it with an n scale decoder and a small loop and worked fine. I never got around to implementing it for the Ttrak though. I was going to use a big O scale decoder to increase the current for the loop.

 

one issue can be track shorts blowing the decoder so best to use a fast blowing fuse to try and protect it.

 

gavin is correct it won’t work with coreless motors that don’t like dcc decoder power output.

 

jeff

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chadbag
1 hour ago, cteno4 said:

gavin is correct it won’t work with coreless motors that don’t like dcc decoder power output.

 

Depending on the decoder, there may be settings to make it work better with coreless motors.   Greenmax has started using Coreless motors, and with my D&H decoders, the D&H customer service sent me some CV settings to make the decoders work better with the coreless motors and they work fine.  I've had them (2 different Greenmax JR 103)  running in the background for a few hours at a time without issue.  So, at least with some decoders (not sure if these were standard CVs or D&H specific ones) you can set parameters to make them be friendlier together.

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cteno4

That’s good to know. As we get into a new 33mm Ttrak push with the club I’ve wondered about lookingnst this again.

 

jeff

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