DCC Point Control

Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Alan Smithee » Fri Apr 25, 2008 12:20 pm

You have a PM on RoG.

Tim
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby paudie27 » Fri Apr 25, 2008 12:34 pm

Anyone use the Hornby Decoder, from the blurb it says it has a 'CAPACITOR' built in which can control up to 4 point motors. It also says it draws a max of 1 amp from the track. Any opinions?????
Regards, Paudie

It's good to talk
Take a look at how me 'Ardagh Layout' is doing on the link below.
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=19675

Also look at
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:21 pm

Hi,
If I use the Roco 10775 Turnout Decoder, can I still use this to control other makes of point other than Roco?
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Alan Smithee » Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:40 pm

Martin,

As I explained above, I use it with Peco twin coil turnout motors therefore there is no reason why you cannot use it with any twin coil turnout motor such as SEEP etc. to latch any normal turnout such as roco, Peco, Tillig etc.

im
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:32 pm

Hi,
I bought some Peco Electrofrog points today, plus the seep point motors. Do they have to be connected the same as an analogue layout, using insulated fish plates. Thanks.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Mike Parkes » Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:48 am

metroman wrote:Hi,
I bought some Peco Electrofrog points today, plus the seep point motors. Do they have to be connected the same as an analogue layout, using insulated fish plates.


If the tracks lead to anything another than a very short headshunt then yes as DCC layouts should be powered throughout, so you need plastic joiners on the two rails leading away from the frog, and a feed to the rail beyond the joiner(unless its another point as in a crossover).
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby paudie27 » Sun Apr 27, 2008 6:28 pm

If the tracks lead to anything another than a very short headshunt then yes as DCC layouts should be powered throughout, so you need plastic joiners on the two rails leading away from the frog, and a feed to the rail beyond the joiner(unless its another point as in a crossover).


As a rule i would run power to all lengths of tracks and not rely on the fishplates for smooth DCC running.
Regards, Paudie

It's good to talk
Take a look at how me 'Ardagh Layout' is doing on the link below.
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=19675

Also look at
http://irishrailwaymodelling.yuku.com/
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:53 pm

Anyone know where you can get the wire with the two pin plug on, that connects between the track and the Digital Amplifier on the Roco multiMAUS system. Thanks
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby corax67 » Sun Apr 27, 2008 9:02 pm

Anyone know where you can get the wire with the two pin plug on, that connects between the track and the Digital Amplifier on the Roco multiMAUS system. Thanks
Martin


You need a Roco 61190 -

http://www.euromodeltrains.com/cgi-bin/ ... w2MTE5MCAg

about the cheapest way as I have failed to find any in the UK
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Sun Apr 27, 2008 9:59 pm

Cheers,Thanks for that.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Alan Smithee » Mon Apr 28, 2008 7:07 am

You need a Roco 61190 -


I could find any at Dortmund or on Ebay :shock:
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:09 am

At Euromodels, they are $4.99 each with postage to the UK at $20.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby metroman » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:20 am

Hi,
Just ordered the Roco 10775 point decoder and a couple of 61190 power feed cables from Howes. I was told that it could take a couple of weeks, but shipping costs from the States/Europe are quite expensive.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby shblythe » Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:26 am

Though, admittedly, I've never tried it, I think point control is one area where analog is probably more intuitive than DCC.

Whereas for loco control dcc seems obviously more intuitive (drive the engine, not the track) I'm struggling to see how dcc can compete with studs or switches on a trackplan for simplicity of working.

It seems to me with dcc you'd have to remember the addresses of all your individual points or draw them on a plan in place of the switches, but either way there is more to do per point change than with the analog system.

I know many systems can use macros to simplify the process, and I suppose this gives dcc an advantage, but if your layout has more than a few possible routes you will need to memorise or display the macro numbers for the routes somewhere. Also, unless your route requires more than, say, 4 or 5 point settings, it is likely to require more button presses under dcc than analog.

I also can't see it simplifying the wiring much - shortening it perhaps, with a group of motors all connected to a single decoder rather than a control panel. Now, perhaps if the decoders were individual and could be fitted to each individual motor, but this would be more expensive I suppose.

Just my two penn'orth. I'm sure there will be many with success stories to share! :)

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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby A Do Ron Ron » Tue Apr 29, 2008 8:56 am

shblythe wrote:..... I'm struggling to see how dcc can compete with studs or switches on a trackplan for simplicity of working.

It seems to me with dcc you'd have to remember the addresses of all your individual points or draw them on a plan in place of the switches, but either way there is more to do per point change than with the analog system.


Well yes and no ! :?
There are very good reasons for staying with good old fashioned analogue switches for point and route control, especially if you have a complex track arrangement with a lot of points. The graphical representation of a route diagram or mimic board would be far quicker than referring to addresses and tapping them into a DCC controller. Macros help, but there's nothing to beat a diagram.

However, you can have a DCC mimic board or panel; either software (as with RR&co, RocoMotion etc.) or hardware (such as provided by Viessmann or Uhlenbrock).

I've added the following to give a taste of where various DCC manufacturers are going.
I hope this is useful, if only out of interest. :oops:
....and yes, all this kit is available today!

Ron :thup


The Viessmann Commander DCC system can display a layout diagram on it's main touch display. Just touch the points or routes you want to set. Alternatively, add their GBS mimic board system. This builds up like a mosaic or jigsaw puzzle to create a working diagram of your layout or part-layout, using a whole selection of switches, working lights and plain route jigsaw pieces.
This drives the turnouts and signals out on the real track.

Here is the Commander DCC system, showing it's main display in route control mode.

Viessmann Commander 2.jpg
Viessmann Commander 2.jpg (71.16 KiB) Viewed 6348 times


This is the add-on GBS route control system. Just a basic arrangement shown.
It's actually quite big. There are some views in this link too.
http://www.viessmann-modell.com/pdf/Com ... onitor.pdf

A basic Viessmann GBS panel.jpg
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Uhlenbrock do a similar mosaic/jigsaw hardware panel, although it looks to be fairly fiddly to assemble.

Uhlenbrock 1.gif
(19.72 KiB) Downloaded 655 times


Personally I think that software panels are a better way forward and can be a lot cheaper, especially if you already have a PC or Laptop computer available. They are also much easier to re-configure and you don't need to buy the hardware bits and pieces of the two systems I have shown.
I'll let our RR&co user friends tell us about their experiences. :wink:

As a taster, here's a Zimo demo using a touch screen.

Zimo touch panel demo.jpg
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby shblythe » Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:58 am

Thanks "A Do Ron Ron", certainly some interesting stuff to look at there.

I still can't see the point (nice pun :| ) of DCC point control without that sort of interface.

Cheers,

Stephen
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby G.M.R. » Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:30 pm

If you have a larger layout where you can operate from more than one position with remote handsets, then having the points under DCC control means that you can set routes without having to dive back to a fixed control panel somewhere.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby shblythe » Tue Apr 29, 2008 8:58 pm

G.M.R. wrote:If you have a larger layout where you can operate from more than one position with remote handsets, then having the points under DCC control means that you can set routes without having to dive back to a fixed control panel somewhere.


I understand the principle, but do you actually have experience of it, and can you memorise the point addresses?

If not, you'd have to dive back to a chart with the addresses on!
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Nicholas » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:01 pm

The ECoS allows you to type the info under the switch and put on a number of different pages ( for example I am building a second layout vand use a different page) and also indicates which way the point is set.
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby G.M.R. » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:28 pm

shblythe wrote:
G.M.R. wrote:If you have a larger layout where you can operate from more than one position with remote handsets, then having the points under DCC control means that you can set routes without having to dive back to a fixed control panel somewhere.


I understand the principle, but do you actually have experience of it, and can you memorise the point addresses?

If not, you'd have to dive back to a chart with the addresses on!


Experience, yes. This is the way I am now handling my layout. I have five different operational areas around the layout each with a number of points. Just over 50 points in total. What I have done is assign a start address for each area's group of points and then numbered them in the most logical order for me.

The decoders that I am using have addresses in blocks of four, so I have assigned 12 addresses using 3 decoders for each area. I am quite happy working in multiples of 12, and due to the layout of the room, have no trouble remembering which is which area number. So for example, my MPD is area 2 so the points there run from 13 onwards. The main terminus is area 3 so the points run from 25 onwards.

I am sure there are plenty of other ways of organising things, and I know that some people are able to have large graphic displays in their train rooms, but for me I have no trouble quickly working out which point is which and then performing a shunt or other operation with little delay.

You mention concern over the number of button presses, but I find that addressing becomes a reasonably quick exercise. For those with sound equipped locos, which I aspire to, but have not got around to yet, there are then plenty more button presses to process, but I think that all adds to the fun of controlling our models. I guess there is quite a bit to do whilst driving the prototype, although I accept that someone else is setting the routes :)
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Mike Friedman » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:38 pm

I agree with you shblythe, I went DCC some eight years ago but kept my points as stud and probe on a traditional control panel, and the two worked well together for some three years, the thought of trying to remember the address of some 90 points seemed a nightmare; however I always intended to go to computer control so the traditional panel was replaced by a soft panel on my laptop when I implemented Railroad & Co, the advantages are too numerous to bore people with here, suffice it to say DCC control of points when linked to computer control is an excellent solution.

One of my two old traditional stud and probe panels:

Pic6small.jpg
Pic6small.jpg (80.03 KiB) Viewed 6236 times


Part of my new soft panel:

RRpanel1.jpg
RRpanel1.jpg (102.89 KiB) Viewed 6233 times
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby shblythe » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:47 pm

G.M.R. wrote:
shblythe wrote:
G.M.R. wrote:If you have a larger layout where you can operate from more than one position with remote handsets, then having the points under DCC control means that you can set routes without having to dive back to a fixed control panel somewhere.


I understand the principle, but do you actually have experience of it, and can you memorise the point addresses?

If not, you'd have to dive back to a chart with the addresses on!


Experience, yes. This is the way I am now handling my layout. I have five different operational areas around the layout each with a number of points. Just over 50 points in total. What I have done is assign a start address for each area's group of points and then numbered them in the most logical order for me.

The decoders that I am using have addresses in blocks of four, so I have assigned 12 addresses using 3 decoders for each area. I am quite happy working in multiples of 12, and due to the layout of the room, have no trouble remembering which is which area number. So for example, my MPD is area 2 so the points there run from 13 onwards. The main terminus is area 3 so the points run from 25 onwards.

I am sure there are plenty of other ways of organising things, and I know that some people are able to have large graphic displays in their train rooms, but for me I have no trouble quickly working out which point is which and then performing a shunt or other operation with little delay.

You mention concern over the number of button presses, but I find that addressing becomes a reasonably quick exercise. For those with sound equipped locos, which I aspire to, but have not got around to yet, there are then plenty more button presses to process, but I think that all adds to the fun of controlling our models. I guess there is quite a bit to do whilst driving the prototype, although I accept that someone else is setting the routes :)


I can see how this would work. You probably quickly learn the points you use most often and, provided - as you say - there is some logic to the ordering of the addresses, you can quickly calculate any addresses you use less often until, eventually, you come to learn those as well.

Certainly worth me considering.

I'm only considering a small shunting layout at the moment (just as an essay really) with maybe 6 points, so no doubt I could apply this method. Is it really more "fun" needing to press more buttons to apply what should be, and has been before the introduction of DCC, a simple process.
I see sound as a "value added" so you would expect to have to do more work to achieve it, but we've always been able to easily control points - other than in high end systems with complex graphical capabilities and even touchscreens, DCC actually seems to make it harder!

If it really is more fun to need more button presses to perform simple tasks, we should all get Hornby Elites and enjoy the 8 or so buttons presses it takes to blow the whistle/horn! :P :D

Seriously though - thanks for your views here. This really is a fascinating forum and a great place to get the views of other people who have actually done things which you're considering yourself.

Cheers,

Stephen
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby shblythe » Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:55 pm

Mike Friedman wrote:I agree with you shblythe, I went DCC some eight years ago but kept my points as stud and probe on a traditional control panel, and the two worked well together for some three years, the thought of trying to remember the address of some 90 points seemed a nightmare; however I always intended to go to computer control so the traditional panel was replaced by a soft panel on my laptop when I implemented Railroad & Co, the advantages are too numerous to bore people with here, suffice it to say DCC control of points when linked to computer control is an excellent solution.


Thanks Mike. I'm a software engineer during the day, so I'm naturally tempted by computer control. This is something I will definitely get round to looking at one day.
I notice that the accessory decoders I've looked at also have pushbutton inputs for traditional control, so maybe I'll have the best of both worlds and I can make an informed decision when my layout supports both methods!

Stephen
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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby beast66606 » Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:05 pm

And here's a shot of RR&Co emulating an NX panel

As Mike says - RR&Co for me every time .. :)

(And I too am a software engineer by day and sometimes night)

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Re: DCC Point Control

Postby Hamilton » Wed Apr 30, 2008 2:24 am

Just following on from numbering points in a logical sequence as mentioned in a number of the posts above etc.

I have chosen to divide my layout into three decentralised operating zones or sections each one based on a signal box for that section. That way I have numbered the points based on the signal box name and lever number and that provides the unique identifier. Obviously you can't use alphanumerics for decoder addresses however a simple tabulation recording blocks of numbers asigned to each signal box allows for under base board ease of tracking wiring to 50 semaphore signal decoders / tortoises plus 25 point decoder / tortoises.

A mimic diagram provided at each box location on the facia complete with an operating lever frame corresponding with the points and signals at that signal box completes the operation. The lever frame is on a drawer that slides into the facia when not in use to prevent damage and shirt sleeve catches! Using the CML products but driven from the lever frame instead of push buttons with detection from Digitrax LocoNet using BDL168s lighting up the mimic panel showing occupancy of a block.

Haven't yet decided if to have signals automatically controlled by block detection or some hybrid as I don't know if I want to be a signalman and driver when operating the layout by myself. Perhaps two modes. Switch to fully automatic signalling or manual signalling controlled by signal boxes. :?:
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