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Hi
Changing over to DCC is going to have a cost, as you will need a DCC consol and a decoder for every loco. A DCC consol will sell from around £50 to £250 or more and decoders from £7 to £25 each. The cost reflecting the level of control and functionality available from that unit
Wiring is simplified - No isolating sections, though if you have them currently simply switch them all on. Connect together all track feeds that go to one rail on all sections and do the same with all connections to the other rails i.e All right-hand rails are connected together and all left-hand rails together.
I took the plung and I havent looked back, there's so much more on offer too beyond the basic train control.
 

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QUOTE (olon1968 @ 13 Dec 2007, 17:52) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hello

What is involved in converting a conventionally wired layout to DCC?

At its very basic connecting the DCC system to the existing track feed(s) from the (disconnected) DC controllers, disconnecting any electronic track cleaner and throwing all the section switches on. Point motors will need their own decoder modules to work via DCC so they would initially have to remain conventionally powered
 

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If you want to give DCC a try without spending too much to begin with then Hattons are advertising the Bachmann EZ controller for £34. (I got it ealier in the year when it was only £29.)

I know that it's only a basic set and others will tell you about its limitations but I think as a starter set at that price it can't be beaten. I may upgrade later but it will do for now.

Cheers, Robert
 

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I must admit I have just done what you are enuiring about.

My layout was dc and it has been converted to dcc with very little stress thanks to the people on here being able to provide me with where to place power feeds and also where to place isolating fishplates so that it is a belt and braces layout.

Check this feed out and it may give you an idea of what I went through.

http://www.modelrailforum.com/forums/index...?showtopic=3595

I too am using a bachmann e-z and to be honest as the guys have also said it is good for a starter system to give you an idea of how to be able to get to grips with a dcc layout but I would suggest maybe getting a controller that you can go a but more advanced with like maybe the Dynamis.

I hope this helps.
 

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I converted mine recently and used the "staple-like" connectors for points that Hornby sell- you could proably use flexible staples in fact to bridge the point frogs and make all roads live. It saved me messing about with insulfrog wiring etc and works great. I didnt have any isolating sections so there was not need to switch them all live and I use a track rubber- no high frequency Relco type unit to bother the DCC signal. I got a Dynamis when they were released and it is superb- enough features to satisfy the "average modeller" and the IR conenciton to the base unit lets you wander around with no worries.

I use TCS MC2 chips since they are small enough to fit into OO locos and have great running features- about £16 per chip. I have chipped 7 locos now and am deciding what to do with my older Trian XO4 models and '80s Hornby fleet currently.

I think that the slow scale running, ability to have multi machines on the go and most especially "consists" is a great DCC feature. I had a top and tail freight running with 8F and 3F front and rear with no worries the other day- speed matched perfectly.....

Good luck and have fun!
 

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Yeah, ok the Bachmann system is cheap, but I don't think its the best route. I picked up a cheap roco set on ebay (not much more than the bachmann one; about £40-50, including a sturdy transformer capable of a lot more than the Bachmann one! I then expanded and did some research and discovered that the Roco LokMaus2 works with Lenz, and I now have it as one of my slave units to my new system. The roco system also allows CV prograamming and upto 4 functions (including dirrectional lighting).

You can easily mix components between the system, like decoders, provided they are NMRA compliant. I have 3 or 4 different brands of decoder. The Bachmann ones are very good value for money too!

On converting to DCC its simple, just wire all rails together from a main 'trunk' power supply that runs round underneath with taps off it, only thing make sure your rails are squeeky clean for optimum running, but even if they are not perfectly clean then the locos (unless Lima!) will still run better on DCC than DC (I would advise against chipping Lima locos as they really have such poor motors that the advantages of DCC are fairly pointless, infact I was talking with the owner of my local model railway shop and we agreed that its much easier to go for DCC fitted or at least ready if you are a beginner, as the locos are designed for DCC and so have perfectly cleaned and maintained pickups.)

So to sum up you need;
-Lots of wire!
-A base unit control system and transformer
-DCC chips / locos fitted with DCC chips
-A bit of patience and perserverance (I've never looked back)

Just some of my ideas hope they help!
 

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I havent bothered with this "digital bus" wiring- choosing to use the track as my "bus" and making all the points live. It works fine- maybe it's a size issue? I bought all the iwre but though Id try it out with makign the points live across both frogs and everything worked fine...........................

Am I missing something?

 

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QUOTE (Watty @ 22 Feb 2008, 13:43) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I havent bothered with this "digital bus" wiring- choosing to use the track as my "bus" and making all the points live.

Yeah, I haven't gone down the "digital bus" route, although it is recommended. I have a 16'x2' layout with 6 lines and a goods yard and it is just wired to make everything live; a bit messy, but I know what does what! It works fine (to my knowledge!)
 

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QUOTE I havent bothered with this "digital bus" wiring- choosing to use the track as my "bus" and making all the points live. It works fine- maybe it's a size issue? I bought all the iwre but though Id try it out with makign the points live across both frogs and everything worked fine...........................

Sorry to strongly disagree, but the DCC signal depends on good continuity. If you want performance, good quality running slow running, put in a bus and droppers. Wire that is adequately sized for the current. If you want the Heath Robinson approach then wire as recommended as above, don't complain when you have problems. There is minimal cost with putting in a bus,and droppers, and wiring properly. I simply cannot understand why it should not be done correct way, after all this is a hobby, that I presume you would like to give you pleasure, so why comprise it's totally unnecessary.
 
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