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Having got my N scale layout up and running with a Lenz Set 100 in control, if I get a short then any loco fitted with a Lenz mini-gold decoder (via a NEM651 socket) sits there with the lights flashing once the short is reset. The locos with TCS M1s don't seem bothered! I cannot find a simple way of resetting them but assume there must be one. If I lift the loco off the track and replace it, it's fine but not ideal to say the least.

Anyone able to give me a simple pointer as to what is happening here please and a better way of resolving the reset?
 

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QUOTE (Geoff Booth @ 14 Jun 2008, 23:12) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Having got my N scale layout up and running with a Lenz Set 100 in control, if I get a short then any loco fitted with a Lenz mini-gold decoder (via a NEM651 socket) sits there with the lights flashing once the short is reset. The locos with TCS M1s don't seem bothered! I cannot find a simple way of resetting them but assume there must be one. If I lift the loco off the track and replace it, it's fine but not ideal to say the least.

Anyone able to give me a simple pointer as to what is happening here please and a better way of resolving the reset?

***Hello Geoff

Normally this front/rear light flashing is supposed to indicate that the decoder has detected a motor short.

to quote Lenz: "When you first turn on your system a blinking front and rear headlight indicates that the gold decoder has identified a motor short. CV30 is set and the motor outputs are deactivated. If this condition occurs the fault should be corrected before you try to operate the decoder."

PERHAPS: Its reacting to the voltage peak that happens after a short. If it is CV 30 will have a value other than zero in it - reset it to zero.

To stop it the easiest way will be no more Lenz Gold decoders.... but as a "patch" type fix, you could try adding a suppression / terminating filter to your track bus as this will "damp" the offending peaks. The parts cost is pennies only so its worth doing anyway as it will give long term protection to ALL decoders.

It is a 0.1micro Farad ceramic disc capacitor in series with a 150 ohm (2~3 watt) resistor connected across the bus

ie:

left rail bus > resistor > capacitor > right rail bus

ALSO - you should lower the Lenz rail voltage for N scale - it is far too high. Try to reset to about 11~12 volts - ex factory is over 15.

The latest Lenz command stations/boosters will, I think, let you do this via a software command in their setup instructions - this MAY also help your problem - and will certainly help overall long term reliability too.

Regards

Richard
DCCconcepts
 

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We have had similar problems with Lenz Gold decoders, both our own & customers. They do seem to dislike FLM locos with the earlier 3-pole motor in particular. Usually we swop them for ESU, Lenz Silvers or Bachmann 3-function (which are ESU) anyway.
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 14 Jun 2008, 16:42) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>***Hello Geoff

Normally this front/rear light flashing is supposed to indicate that the decoder has detected a motor short.

to quote Lenz: "When you first turn on your system a blinking front and rear headlight indicates that the gold decoder has identified a motor short. CV30 is set and the motor outputs are deactivated. If this condition occurs the fault should be corrected before you try to operate the decoder."

PERHAPS: Its reacting to the voltage peak that happens after a short. If it is CV 30 will have a value other than zero in it - reset it to zero.

To stop it the easiest way will be no more Lenz Gold decoders.... but as a "patch" type fix, you could try adding a suppression / terminating filter to your track bus as this will "damp" the offending peaks. The parts cost is pennies only so its worth doing anyway as it will give long term protection to ALL decoders.

It is a 0.1micro Farad ceramic disc capacitor in series with a 150 ohm (2~3 watt) resistor connected across the bus

ie:

left rail bus > resistor > capacitor > right rail bus

ALSO - you should lower the Lenz rail voltage for N scale - it is far too high. Try to reset to about 11~12 volts - ex factory is over 15.

The latest Lenz command stations/boosters will, I think, let you do this via a software command in their setup instructions - this MAY also help your problem - and will certainly help overall long term reliability too.

Regards

Richard
DCCconcepts

Thanks Richard I have dropped the track voltage to 12v (I seem to be missing my LZV100 manual though...) but easily done once checked on line and so far that seems to be better all round. I will look at the other add in filter idc.

As zmil says your knowledge on this topic is quite exceptional!

Regards

Geoff
 

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QUOTE (Geoff Booth @ 15 Jun 2008, 17:55) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Thanks Richard I have dropped the track voltage to 12v (I seem to be missing my LZV100 manual though...) but easily done once checked on line and so far that seems to be better all round. I will look at the other add in filter idc.

As zmil says your knowledge on this topic is quite exceptional!

Regards

Geoff


***Hi Geoff - I'm pleased the ideas have helped.

That over high track voltage of EU made control systems is a curse and the cause of many, many minor problems - plus the real culprit in the "it was running OK for ages but now its dead" death of many decoders.

Fingers crossed that if you also add those very simple filters, your Lenz Gold problems will disappear totally!

Richard
 

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Hi on the subject of voltage on Lenz equipment i have a TR150 power supply from them which is sekundar i presume is the output 15V i intend to use with my NCE procab for my N gauge American layout, do i need to turn down the voltage in the same way as it is a sealed unit with no adjustment facility i can find on it.
Or will the procab adjust the voltage going to the track.
 

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QUOTE (upnick @ 16 Jun 2008, 07:57) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hi on the subject of voltage on Lenz equipment i have a TR150 power supply from them which is sekundar i presume is the output 15V i intend to use with my NCE procab for my N gauge American layout, do i need to turn down the voltage in the same way as it is a sealed unit with no adjustment facility i can find on it.
Or will the procab adjust the voltage going to the track.

***The NCE PowerHouse Pro control box / command centre+booster will regulate the voltage internally.

Regards

Richard
DCCconcepts
 

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G'day
One thing to remember , The Control/Power station may regulate the voltage from your Power supply (or transformer in older terminology) But it is better to have a power supply that supplies very close to the required track voltage.
the reason for this is that any voltage regulation (or lowering from 16v down to 12v) uses energy , which is dissipated as heat . Consequentially that will lower the amount of current that you can utilize on your track.
Regards Zmil
 

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QUOTE (zmil @ 16 Jun 2008, 05:17) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>G'day
One thing to remember , The Control/Power station may regulate the voltage from your Power supply (or transformer in older terminology) But it is better to have a power supply that supplies very close to the required track voltage.
the reason for this is that any voltage regulation (or lowering from 16v down to 12v) uses energy , which is dissipated as heat . Consequentially that will lower the amount of current that you can utilize on your track.
Regards Zmil

You are correct about minimising power dissipation in the booster being a good thing, but using a lower input voltage will not limit the current available to the track.

Andrew Crosland
 

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QUOTE (SPROGman @ 16 Jun 2008, 20:48) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>You are correct about minimising power dissipation in the booster being a good thing, but using a lower input voltage will not limit the current available to the track.

Andrew Crosland

What I should have said is:
The greater the input voltage , the more regulation required and the less current available to the track
The closer the input voltage is to the track voltage - the maximum current is available to the track
I hope thats a bit clearer
Regards Zmil
 

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QUOTE (zmil @ 16 Jun 2008, 12:59) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>What I should have said is:
The greater the input voltage , the more regulation required and the less current available to the track
The closer the input voltage is to the track voltage - the maximum current is available to the track
I hope thats a bit clearer
Regards Zmil

Not sure that's right either! Regulation in the command station will generate as heat an amount of watts equal to the amps being drawn multiplied by the number of volts dropped, plus something for inefficiency. So crudely speaking dropping twice as many volts at the same current will just dissipate twice as much heat. The amount of regulation can only limit the current available if this causes overheating in the command station, which should not happen in any properly-designed command station being used within its design voltage and current ratings.
 

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QUOTE (zmil @ 16 Jun 2008, 13:59) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>What I should have said is:
The greater the input voltage , the more regulation required and the less current available to the track
The closer the input voltage is to the track voltage - the maximum current is available to the track
I hope thats a bit clearer
Regards Zmil

OK, I think I see what you are trying to say...

The only case where you would be correct is if you are already at the limit of the regulator's specification for power dissipation and incrreasing the input voltage, and thus the voltage across the regulator, would dissipate too much power in the regulator. In this case reducing the current would solve the problem.

In the general case, using a higher input voltage does not reduce the current available, if the thermal management of the system is adequate.

Andrew
 

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Hi Andrew
Yes ,I think 99% of the time it wouldn't make any difference.
Most systems have overcurrent protection of some sort
Lenz use thermal overload detection
This is from 1 of there manuals

1. The fast acting current limiting circuit designed to very quickly
shut down the LV101 track output if a short is detected. This
circuit activates at over 5 Amps.
2. Thermal overload protection. The LV101 has a long term
thermal overload circuit designed to shut down if its temperature
exceeds its rated capacity or value.
How does this translate to the output power you can expect?
For short term loads such as locomotive start up or slow speed
operation the LV101 can deliver over 5 amps of DCC track power.
For long term loads, the LV101 can continuously deliver between
4 and 5 Amps at the DCC-voltage you set as long as the
difference between input and output voltage is low enough to
prevent the LV101 from prematurely overheating. Otherwise the
thermal overload protection will limit the power output and shut
down the LV101.
That means you can achieve significantly more track current for
running trains with a power supply that matches best to the
LV101s potential.

I hope that clarifies
Regards
Zmil
 
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