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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have decided that on my new exhibition layout, all points shall be dcc controlled.
This should cut down on wiring between boards and no need for point switches on a panel?

How, in laymans terms do the Lenz (Ls150?) point decoder thingies work?

Are the new esu units any better.

Are there any other options?
 

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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 31 Jan 2008, 16:46) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Are there any other options?

I use Digitrax and CML accessory decoders. You connect the track feed to it (2 wires [blue and green]), connect a power supply to charge the CDU (2 wires [white outer sheath, blue and brown]), connect to each point motor (3 wires [red, orange and green]). You can then control the points from the throttle.

I have attached a couple of photos to demonstrate.

HTH




 

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Just another modeller
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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 1 Feb 2008, 01:46) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I have decided that on my new exhibition layout, all points shall be dcc controlled.
This should cut down on wiring between boards and no need for point switches on a panel?
How, in laymans terms do the Lenz (Ls150?) point decoder thingies work?

***Hi

The LS150 works just fine. They are well proven and as good as any for what you want.

One LS150 controls six solenoids so they are quite cost effective. Wiring is basically two wires to the bus, power input for LS 150 (AC) and three wires to the solenoid.

If a point motor is reluctant ....which Peco can occasionally be...I can usually give U an easy fix. It is possible to also parrallel a push button with each output if wanted (again, I can advise how best to do it is needed)

Programming is relatively simple too....

Regards

Richard
 

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Ian Wigglesworth
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I used to use the LS150!

It would sometimes not switch the peco point motors, and would switch off the output because of overload!
You also need a seperate 3amp supply.

I now use the SMD 82 as it can be connected direct to the rails for power as it has a built in CDU.

It will switch 8 points and can be programmed for route control as well.

The SMD82 is a little more complicated to program, but it really is more than just a points decoder!

Ok it's £56 as against £30 for the LS150, but you will also need another power supply for the LS150.

Depends really on what and how many point motors are being used.
In my personal Opinion I think the LS150 would be very good and probably better when used with slow action motors such as the tortoise type.
It may work much better with the peco low power point motors but I have not tried this.

Lenz Manual

SMD 82 Manual

Passive circuit component Circuit component Hardware programmer Electronic component Electronic engineering

Hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 1 Feb 2008, 05:04) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>If a point motor is reluctant ....which Peco can occasionally be...I can usually give U an easy fix. It is possible to also parrallel a push button with each output if wanted (again, I can advise how best to do it is needed)

Programming is relatively simple too....

Regards

Richard

Ls 150 have been ordered. One layout is going to have around 18 points, the other 12.

Richard, is the "Fix" something I buy or information?
 

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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 1 Feb 2008, 03:46) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I have decided that on my new exhibition layout, all points shall be dcc controlled.
This should cut down on wiring between boards and no need for point switches on a panel?

How, in laymans terms do the Lenz (Ls150?) point decoder thingies work?

Are the new esu units any better.

Are there any other options?
I use the LS150 as my prferred points decoder now. The LDT S Dec 4 is good for snap action points only.

I had a go with the ESU Switchpilot ones but they are snap action only unless you add the switchpilot extension which makes them pretty expensive compared with the Lenz. They do offer feedback via railcom on the position of your points though.
 

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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 2 Feb 2008, 02:56) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Ls 150 have been ordered. One layout is going to have around 18 points, the other 12.

Richard, is the "Fix" something I buy or information?

** Actually it is both. It will depend on the cause of the problem.

Most of the time there are no issues, however Peco point motors are pretty primitive bits of gear and they can be helped to do a better job. Adding the switches peco supply often makes them work less well (actually, always makes them work less well!). There are better ways to get proper feedback and throw the frog polarity etc... thats the bit U buy :)

Tip #1: Its only takes a short time to do it but makes a BIG difference to layout long term reliability. Ignore those who say "I never do it and never have a problem - BS - I have never seen a layout using unmodified Peco that didn't have the odd problem that could be avoided so easily.... a Peco point will always eventually fail in contact between blade and either stock and closure rail no matter how well you lay or test them - Of course Murhys law is always in play here so usually this will first happen an hour after the ballast is dry.....

So: to the "point" of this comment.... Modify them all to bond moving point rail to closure rails, cut a proper frog gap in the closure rails and wire the now switchable frog to a suitable switch.

This link shows "best practice" http://www.mrol.com.au/LiveFrogWiring.aspx
(However personally I don't think much of the Peco Switches as they add to the loading and can create problems)

Tip #2: Never use the extended pins between motor and point.

Tip #3: Install and align the point motors perfectly before you lay the points. When aligned use a dab of some epoxy or similar to fix them - just a wee bit - in addition to those ugly peco tabs. This makes a difference.

Before you install them in the layout take a cotton bud and some plain old vaseline. Put vaseline on the cotton bud and coat the inside of the point motor where the "Slug" moves with a thin coat. This stops corrosion that WILL happen when U start using water on the scenery and makes it smoother and less likely to stick. This can also be done with existing "stickly" motors quite successfully.

(Yes, I know U can use product x/y/z for this, but vaseline is easy, not messy, stays where its put and is literally - safe as a babys bum on plastics, which is more than can be said of electrolube on many other supposed "good for hobby use" lubricants or oils!).

Tip #4: use proper wire.
A peco point motor is between 3 and 4 ohms, which at 15 volts is around 4 amps current draw. Its momentary peak will in fact be higher, as will the backEMF peak when it stops. We MUST avoid voltage drop if this isn't to create a problem. The ONLY way to do this is to use decent wire. That means use no less than the equivalent of 7.5 amp mains cable between whatever is operating them and the coils.(ie at least the same size as the 240volt bedside lamp is conected with)

Tip #5: Is not related to point motors - the Peco check rails are far too far away from the stock rails. You need to do 2 things for good running: (a) glue a bit of styrene of between 10 and 15 thou on the inside of the check rail and file the ends to match the c/r. Paint it to match the c/r. (
check all back t obacks - set to no less than 14.5mm for more modern wheel sets - you'll find most H and B less than this. Derailmeants will disappear and everything will run better - less "hunting" from side to side and with the wheel coning now better mated to rail profile, better pickup (I actually set all my own BTB to 14.75, however I use finer flangeways too - your mileage may vary on the wider option depending on wheel profiles and pointwork used)

Thats the "info" bit for now....

Richard
DCCconcepts
 

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Since in the original post you asked if there were any other options,
ZTC make a points changer which fits directly under the pionts, takes it power from the said connections, and is operated by a command from your controler.
so no wiring, no switches at all.
 

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QUOTE (Diggy @ 31 Jan 2008, 23:38) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I use Digitrax and CML accessory decoders. You connect the track feed to it (2 wires [blue and green]), connect a power supply to charge the CDU (2 wires [white outer sheath, blue and brown]), connect to each point motor (3 wires [red, orange and green]). You can then control the points from the throttle.

I have attached a couple of photos to demonstrate.

HTH






Hello.
How do you find the CML unit to work with ? I understand that you can run Lcd's on your control panel from the Cml to show the status of the points.
Regards.
Tony.
 

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If you don't mind building simple electronic kits the cheapest option could be the MERG decoders. £12.50 each (which does 4 points) with a built in CDU, though you have to join MERG to be able to buy them.
 

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QUOTE (TonyDaly @ 3 Mar 2008, 12:25) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hello.
How do you find the CML unit to work with ? I understand that you can run Lcd's on your control panel from the Cml to show the status of the points.
Regards.
Tony.

Tony

I find the CML decoder to work well, in fact it works better than the Digitrax one as that keeps changing the point settings when I power the track up.

There are other connections on the CML but I am not familiar with what these do.

I got them both from;

http://www.scc4dcc.co.uk/

It might be worth you contacting them for further help, I have found them to be good
 

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QUOTE (TonyDaly @ 3 Mar 2008, 12:25) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I understand that you can run Lcd's on your control panel from the Cml to show the status of the points.
Regards.
Tony.

Tony

I have now read the CML DAC10 User Manual and you can connect socket SK6 to an optional add-on board (DTX8) that can be used to drive LEDs to show the point positions.

They have a wiring diagram on their website as below;

www.cmlelectronics.co.uk

HTH
 

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QUOTE (Diggy @ 6 Mar 2008, 18:01) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Tony

I have now read the CML DAC10 User Manual and you can connect socket SK6 to an optional add-on board (DTX8) that can be used to drive LEDs to show the point positions.

They have a wiring diagram on their website as below;

www.cmlelectronics.co.uk

HTH

Hello.
Thanks for that. It looks like the Dac 10 might be the job.
Regards.
Tony.
 

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Paul Hamilton aka &quot;Lancashire Fusilier&quot;
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QUOTE (Diggy @ 5 Mar 2008, 03:38) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Tony

I find the CML decoder to work well, in fact it works better than the Digitrax one as that keeps changing the point settings when I power the track up.

Can you explain what you mean when you say the digitrax one keeps changing the point settings? Do you mean that when you power up it throws the point closed? Does it automatically reverse the position on all points? Just looking for further info before I invest as I am about to install stat decoders on my layout.

Cheers,
 

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QUOTE (Lancashire Fusilier @ 12 Mar 2008, 23:51) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Can you explain what you mean when you say the digitrax one keeps changing the point settings? Do you mean that when you power up it throws the point closed? Does it automatically reverse the position on all points? Just looking for further info before I invest as I am about to install stat decoders on my layout.

Cheers,

Yes, it does exactly that at the moment, but it should be able to be changed not to power up at start up. I have been in contact with Digitrax and it will be changed under warranty with the dealer as there appears to be a fault
 

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I am involved with an Exhibition layout that uses decoders for everything.

Because it is an exhibition layout, very early on we looked at what bus's we would need for the layout.

We have 4 DCC Bus's, one for the outer main, one for the inner main and one for the yard. These 3 are all run via seperate boosters. The fouth bus is used for accesory decoders which is the direct feed from the central unit.

In the event of a short we can simply isolate the relative booster and get trains running quickly again then look into what caused the short.

Admittedly it is a gauge 1 layout so power consumption is greater than what you would need in HO.

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Right, finally got round to doing a bit of testing with these ls150

Using my dynamis to control the ls150 (powered by tr100) when i throw my peco points (pl 10we), there is a very loud noise, more one direction than the other. Same noise as when not using cdu

I thaught i had read somewhere that a cdu was not needed with this set up?

The noise is most off putting, so how do i get rid of it without changing point motors.
 

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Hi PML

The LS150 can have the output to the points adjusted to a faster or slower duration . You may find the default pulse is too long and since Peco point motors do not switch off after throw (unlike most European solenoid type motors , which do) this is causing the extra noise

The pulse duration can be adjusted from 0.1 sec to 10 sec - Details are on page 13 of the manual

Hope this helps

Regards

Zmil
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
ok, will look into it.

The ls150 is brand new so on factory settings, not sure what these are but cant understand why its only one way?

I have fitted a standard pl 10 and its nice and quite, but again slightly quieter one direction than the other!

Too late to do any more now, perhaps some other tips will surface Friday?
 

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Hi PML

The default setting is for 100msec (0.1 sec) so it is already on the shortest duration which is suitable for Roco , Fleischmann etc solenoid point motors. Maybe the Peco require a different setting
The Fleischmann point motors have an Impedence of 24 Ohm so will draw a bit less than 0.7 Amp

Maybe other users of the LS150 have used it with the Peco motors

Regards

Zmil
 
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