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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've finally connected my Lenz Set 100 up to my N gauge layout through permanent connections, now that the layout is nearing completion and about 50% of the motors have decoders fitted

For anyone that has a Lenz Set 100, I have some fairly basic questions

What is the longest distance a power source can be on the track?

When I swap between the track and PROG, the track switches off
During exhibition use this could be a severe problem as the entire operation would come to a halt, or is there something I have missed?

The fiddle yards have 24 routes, and can cope with between 24 and 30 trains (locos / DMUs)
The scenic area could also store further locomotives / DMUs (but not any LHCS)
I can probably handle up to 4 trains running at any one time, ie in motion, by myself
What would be the limit with the one TR150 transformer?
 

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I am a Compact user but can give some guidance on the "What would be the limit with the one TR150 transformer?"

For your planning purposes you should assume that each loco when running will need 1/2 amp. N guage might be less as this is my figure for OO. If you also have locos standing on powered sections then they will also take a very small amount of power. So in that a TR150 provides 5 amps, you will probably be limited to about 9 running locos with others idle around the layout.

If you are also planning to control signals and points via Lenz LS100/LS110/LS150 then they too require some power thus reducing the number of locos that can be run at once. If you add LR101 feedback modules for block detection then again they use a small amout of power.

I would say that running 4 at any one time is well within the capabilities of your system.

However if you start to get towards the 9-10 mark you may want to split your layout into 2 power sections. Possibly 1 section for fiddle and 1 for main scenic area. For this you will need another transformer, either an TR100 ( 3 amps ) or a TR150 ( 5 amps ) plus a booster station. Too little power and your DCC master box will keep tripping out and everything will stop dead!

With the above the 2 sections draw power from their own transformer but the command station and the booster are linked via XpressNet to provide the DCC control for the whole layout. SO even if one power section trips out ( short circuit or too big a demand ) then the other section will continue to function.

I don't think you will need to think about splitting unless you are going to run more than 9 locos and have an exhibition layout.

Hope the above helps and I am sure other forum members will correct any errors I have made.

PS sites like the following are a good source of info. Electric nose and Mackay Models
 

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I've now performed a small test, using a loop on the scenic section and the main fiddle yard
I was able to handle three trains running; one on the fast line and two on the slow lines

I did have four trains running at one point, but found handling all of them was a bit much!
However once the layout is completed the time between the fiddle yards will increase obviously

As a result, and with the layout plans as they are, between 4 and 12 trains could be running at any one time
Clearly, in order to avoid overload / cutout, an additional power station and transformer will be required

I am already familiar with electricnose and MacKay Models (as they are only a few miles away)
However, I found it was cheaper to import my Lenz Set 100 and saved myself about £50 in the process
 

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I use a set 100 with an extra LH 90, the hand held with a rotary speed control and very nice it is too. How many Loco's depends not only on what's been said already about lights and other equipment, but on the current draw of the Loco's also. The newer Hornby and Bachmann models don't seem to need a lot of grunt, a Heljan 47 on the other hand, chews up quite a bit of power. I am talking 00 here, but wouldn't have thought the TR 150 would have any trouble handling more Loco's in N Gauge than you can, if you see what I mean
As well as all that, the LH 90 has a Locomotive stack that holds up to eight Loco's so you can quickly go through them when you want to change. The LH 100 uses the esc' key to toggle between two Loco's quickly.
When you use the programming track, the current to the rest of the layout is switched off, however, you can programme on the main for everything except the Loco' address (CV1) and CVs 17 and 18 which are extended addresses which I've never used. What you could do I think, is have your programming track set up with a double pole changeover switch so that you can use that piece of track as a siding or suchlike (mines a bay platform) and also use that track for POM, so that the Loco' having it's CVs changed is out of the way.
Longest distance for power really depends on your connections. I use a bus wire (or ring main) under the layout, with droppers where I find they're needed. Some people swear by using droppers every three feet, others, a dropper for every length of rail, but so far I've found I don't need it with a double track run of about 60' each, plus sidings a branchline and so on.
Hope I haven't gone on too much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am still only at the planning and development stage, only one fiddle yard is complete, all the other baseboards are nothing more than flat tables!
I have wired up the fiddle yard, with power entering from one end only, as this is pretty much the central observing point, and the Lenz Control systems also reside in this location

Once the layout is completed, next years project is to expand the Lenz system onto Computer Control

The idea just now is to make sure all the elements work and operate as expected, and so far so good
There would be nothing worse than go through all this construction to find that when operating the maximum number of motors there are to many cutouts!

Loco addresses follow a simple pattern, and so once programmed should never need changing
The PROG track is currently separate and although PROM does work, it doesn't allow me to update the address
It looks like this is a disadvantage I will just have to live with

I am interested to read that the LH90 handset allows you to toggle between 8 addresses, something I might look into

I also have a BT Wireless handset, which I will shortly be adding to the XpressNet, but the adaptor is not currently available (and isn't approved for UK use!)
 
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