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Are they any good? will they work with all decoders? Are DIY versions safe (ie could they blow the DCC chip)?

I've just come across these for the first time and an electronic fly-wheel looks intriguing (much better than cleaning the track every 5 minutes).
And there's always a loco that sticks and needs the finger from heaven to give it a push.

Just some thoughts buzzing around my head. Has anyone tried these fly-wheels?

Fabben
 

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QUOTE (fabben @ 19 Jun 2008, 15:32) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Are they any good? will they work with all decoders? Are DIY versions safe (ie could they blow the DCC chip)?

I've just come across these for the first time and an electronic fly-wheel looks intriguing (much better than cleaning the track every 5 minutes).
And there's always a loco that sticks and needs the finger from heaven to give it a push.

Just some thoughts buzzing around my head. Has anyone tried these fly-wheels?

Fabben

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"simple to connect electronic flywheels" don't exist for DCC.

Unless you are confident in climbing into the decoder itself to connect them on the decoder side of the primary onboard rectifier and also have a compatible circuit for current limiting charge and dicharge rates they cannot be used at all with a decoder - you cannot add a simple capacitor circuit on the input leads at all.

Richard
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I remember back in the late 70's there was some experimenting with this sort of thing - fitting a capacitor into the locomotives but I never managed much if any success.

Unless you really do know what you are doing just use decoders without modification.
 

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I have seen the Lenz power 1 module demonstrated on a Lenz Gold decoder. It works very well, but I have really found no need for it. Sadly it is fairly bulky, which would make it problematic in the kind of small and light 4 wheel vehicle (like an inspection trolley) where it would be most useful. I believe Zimo offer a circuit diagram for a similar self build module suitable for some of their decoders, but have not looked at this yet.

However: regular Nickel silver track, live frog points, brass or harder metal wheels throughout, total ban on traction tyres, grease or dry lubrication and no solder anywhere near the rail running surface; and everything stays very clean on my intensively operated layout. A weighted chassis drags round a piece of hardboard with a lead block on top which picks up anything that does get deposited on the rails; a scrub with a wire brush renews the rubbing service removing the dark grey deposit. The layout just runs and runs, the locos always start. Definitely better reliability than the same layout operated in the same way, but on DC.

An effect I noticed when converting from DC to DCC was that the 20 or so locos converted in the first batch would quickly pick up a serious dirt deposit on their driven wheels, resulting in degraded pick up. I was a little concerned as this was something different from DC operation where it was idle wheels and track that were the site of dirt deposition, driven wheels stayed clean. But after the first month this ceased, no dirt deposition on driven wheels. My feeling is that the driven wheels picked up most of the dirt that was in place around the layout in that first month of DCC operation, and having 'mopped up' what was already there from many years DC operation, now stay clean.
 
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