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I have bought Virgin Trains Pendolino train set. I took the cable which came with the set from controller to track into work to see if they can get a compatable cable going by the printed specification. Is this cable suitable for a large bus system, as my plans are to create a layout going around the whole loft. I would appreciate any help in cable spec, as a reel of cable compatable to that of Hornbys cable costs £29 for a reel of 500metres, so need 2 reels so wont want spend £58 on cable which is totally incorrect to what I actually need.

Also what sort of intavles to I need between each dropper? 1.5m?

Many thanks
 

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I'm not sure what thickness the wire hornby have used for there DCC set but the wire I am using for my BUS is 1.5MM TRI-RATED CABLE and costs £15.22 for a 100m reel which I am getting two reels red and black,and I am using this for my droppers 16/0.2 WIRE CABLE and costs £7 for a 100m reel and it will be attached to every section of track which will be a lot on my layout but I have this wire already in the loft.

That is for my 21ft x 6ft twin deck layout in our loft.
 

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I'd buy a 50mtr drum of either 1.5mm T & E or 2.5mm T & E which cost around £16 to £22 depending very much on where its purchased and then remove the outer grey sheath (It pulls off very easily!). You're then left with a Brown and Blue insulated pair of conductors and a bare earth wire. You run the two insulated conductors around the layout and tap into them wherever needed. You can discard the bare earth wire or do as I have done and run it around the layout with the other two and use the former earth wire as a common return conductor for all non DCC items.
Cable like this...(Not necessarily the cheapest on offer though!)
1.5mm T & E
2.5mm cable
Droppers can be 16/02mm flex purchased in a 10mtr long hank with the same two conductor colours as the main bus wires (Brown & Blue).
Total cost around £18 to £25 maximum.


If your lucky and know anyone who's having a house rewire or know a local electrician you will probably be able to have for free some old Red & Black insulation 2.5mm cable in reasonable lengths, which without to much trouble, this can be soldered up to make a longer conductor lengths if needs be
:
 

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I can never understand the us of solid core (new or scrap) twin & earth cable.

You can buy a 100m reel of 2.5mm Tri-rated single flexible from CPC for 21.44 (inc VAT), so for 42.88 you get the equivelent of 2 x 50m reels of T & E from Wickes) for around the same price.

The tri rated is far easier to work with & is available in a range of colours. Red & black are easily identifiable. Some of the browns & blues found in current twin & earth cables are very "wishy washy" & not so easy to identify in poor light. Some batches have been found diffecult to strip.

Invest in some more suitable cable, you won't regret it.

You won't find any scrap cable in skips in our erea now either - the eastern europeans will almost certainly beat you to it !
 

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QUOTE I can never understand the us of solid core (new or scrap) twin & earth cable.
Scrap if free

T & E is so easy to come by..... All DIY stores sell it, OK prices may vary, but that's the buyers choice where to purchase from...
Best of all its easily obtainable - so you can buy now and no waiting to order flexible from a remote suppler and waiting etc.
Once in palce 2.5mm solid is very easy to strip the insulation from whenever a dropper is needed to connect to it - Run a craft knife around the insulation and slice off 15-20mm or so . Flexible conductors are very much harder to strip along their length. It keeps flexing then the knife digs into the soft wires and fractures a few conductors so you end up with 2.5 cable reducing it to around 1.5mm if you're not careful.


If you're using 100mtrs of cable for a DCC bus you have one big layout!! Most layouts wouldn't want anywhere near this amount. 20 to 25 Mtrs easily doing a 7 x 6 Mtr (21 x 18 feet approx) layout and that's big for the UK.
 

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QUOTE (Brian @ 14 Nov 2007, 18:18) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Scrap if free

T & E is so easy to come by..... All DIY stores sell it, OK prices may vary, but that's the buyers choice where to purchase from...
Best of all its easily obtainable - so you can buy now and no waiting to order flexible from a remote suppler and waiting etc.
Once in palce 2.5mm solid is very easy to strip the insulation from whenever a dropper is needed to connect to it - Run a craft knife around the insulation and slice off 15-20mm or so . Flexible conductors are very much harder to strip along their length. It keeps flexing then the knife digs into the soft wires and fractures a few conductors so you end up with 2.5 cable reducing it to around 1.5mm if you're not careful.


If you're using 100mtrs of cable for a DCC bus you have one big layout!! Most layouts wouldn't want anywhere near this amount. 20 to 25 Mtrs easily doing a 7 x 6 Mtr (21 x 18 feet approx) layout and that's big for the UK.


Scrap is indeed free - but it is just that - scrap.

Must be a great problem, suddenly deciding to install a power bus & having to wait 24hrs for a delivery from CPC, Maplins or others.

OK, easy to strip if you are careful, but not harder than flexible.

Why quote prices for reels if you only want a few meters ?

Your choice of course, but I certainly would not either use or recommend it.
 

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Sorry, I have to completly disagree.
For a fixed layout, solid mains conductor for a DCC bus is ideal. (Portable's are a little diferent and need a little bit of movement thats offered by flex! but were refering to home layouts that are in the main fixed)
You dont have to buy 50 or 100Mtr drums of mains cable as its sold in shorter 'pre-cut' or 'cut it yourself' lengths. So a big saving can be made if you only need say 10Mtrs.

Senario Saturday morning I need to install my DCC bus. Now I can go to my local DIY store/Wilkos etc and buy immediatly my cable (Most towns have at least one store that sells mains cable), I take it home and install it

Alternativly I can order by phone or the internet from wherever.... Now, the order wont be processed until Monday, posted off, if its in stock, on Monday p.m.and perhaps arrive with me if I'm in luck Tuseday or more likely Wednesday. Max 5 days have past by.

The solid wire has been installed, conencted up and in use all ready by Saturday p.m. or Sunday perhaps


I would, for the home layout, recommend solid conductor bus wire (stripped from mains cable) everytime - Its Cheap (or free perhaps), easy to obtian, simple to instal and very easy to connect onto and solder onto once installed


Sorry we dont agree, but thats life
 

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QUOTE (Brian @ 14 Nov 2007, 18:18) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Once in palce 2.5mm solid is very easy to strip the insulation from whenever a dropper is needed to connect to it - Run a craft knife around the insulation and slice off 15-20mm or so . Flexible conductors are very much harder to strip along their length. It keeps flexing then the knife digs into the soft wires and fractures a few conductors so you end up with 2.5 cable reducing it to around 1.5mm if you're not careful.
It's even easier with "automatic" wire strippers. See earlier in the thread. They cope with solid and stranded.

Andrew
 
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