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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a loft layout that is running on DCC, and have three tracks that enter a tunnel, go around the end of the loft, then emerge out the other side, again through tunnels, does any one know if it would be possible to add passing loops so that a train would enter the tunnel, go onto the passing loop, trigger a switch to change the points at both ends of the loop, therefore cutting the power supply to that loop, and allowing a train waiting on the ajasent track to exit the loop, this train would then do a full circuit, again enter the loop and repeat the operation allowing the original train to run, i do not want to use reed switches as this would require fitting magnets to the locos, if this could be done the operating possibilities could be expanded. any ideas would be gratefully received.
 

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You could do at least some of this with the new Ecos. Using s88 occupancy detectors to trigger switches. You would have to do a bit of planning and playing around but you may well acheive this. A link to the english language manual is under the Ecos thread or on the ESU german website for full details.
 

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I don't have a full solution but here's a suggestion for stopping the trains and leaving the track live.

If you have decoders which respond to the recently approved asymmetric braking / stop signal then you can use this to bring trains to a halt. I believe the circuitry needed to do this is just four diodes.

That still leaves you with the problem of how to trigger the braking zone in the first place, which takes us back to Neil's suggestion of occupancy detectors.

In pre-DCC days I think people might have used latching relays where the locomotive wheels are used to direct track power to the relay coil as they pass over an isolated segment of track rail. I don't know if relays would like the signal that flows through rails under DCC control.

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the information so far, i was hoping that there was a proprietary box of trix on the market that could possibly be activated by a infra red beam, sited between the rails, i'm not too technically minded as to how things actually work, but can follow installation instruction without to many problems, plug in and go would be the ideal way for me.
 

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I have a suspicion that nobody will produce a box of tricks (at least not yet) because you can do exactly what you want if you connect your DCC command station up to a PC. That's not a cheap option.

Maybe in a few years when all those people buying "entry level" systems have grown the market to several times its current size, a manufacturer will see a market for just the kind of thing you are suggesting. For now, you are on the b'leading edge of early adopters.

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Its not looking to promising then at the moment, is it really that difficult to do such a thing without using a computer? i don't really think i would want my layout running without my input. may be i'm looking at it in a too simplistic way? I know things are never that straight forward but this is how i see it:

Train crossess over point into loop.

Train activates switch, that sends pulse to electric point motors.

Points switch over closing off the loop and stopping the train

This in turn opens the adjoining loop, powers the track and allows the train on that track to move off.

Hey presto done!!!!!! Only problem is I don't know how to achieve it.
 

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As the trains will not be visible it does not matter about smooth stopping.

It will be simple to do - what point/point motors are you using ?

Then we can advise further.

best regards
Brian
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you Mark, i have sent heathcote electronics a e-mail with the operation i wanted to achieve, but your link confirms that they do a system that may meet my requirements.
Hello Brian, I can confirm that it does not matter if the locos stop sharply, as they will be out of sight, the points i have are Peco 100, the point motors are also Peco soloniod, would appreciate your input.

Many thanks to you both.

John
 
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