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Tricky Dicky

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Everything posted by Tricky Dicky

  1. For many it is not as simple as dividing two numbers it is what numbers to use, whereas those in the know will consult manufacturers data sheets. Beginners would need to know where to first obtain that data let alone make sense of what appears gobblygook even if they could obtain the relevant data. This hobby is a broad church and not everyone wants to become an electronics expert to run a layout and why should they? I do not think it is unreasonable for people to take out a " black box" approach of saying " I have a certain colour LED and a certain power supply, what resistor do I use? After
  2. I am with those who want to leave well alone. What I think you might want to consider is to change computer control in special interests to Automation & Computer Control as many questions on both seem to crop up in the DCC sections. It might also be useful to direct questions/discussions on automation and computer control to that relevant sub-forum. Richard
  3. DisplayPort is compatible with HDMI so a lead with the appropriate plugs at either end will be OK. Displayport is far from being just another standard imposed on PC users, it is the ideal way to display on several screens from a single PC. Richard
  4. The last model railway layout programme aimed more at modellers was Model Town also shown on Discovery Shed channel a few years back it has not been repeated nor has it ever come out on DVD. It showed several techniques from track laying and ballasting to building construction and weathering. If I recall it was built in one of the buildings on the Bluebell line and displayed there for a while. It also had an entertainment aspect to attract the occasional channel hopper with a back story based on a murder, spies and a radio-active tin mine. Richard
  5. Probably an unregulated PSU, you need to add a voltage regulator to the output. It is a simple circuit consisting of an IC and a few capacitors. Google will turn up a few if not PM me with a email address and I will send you a circuit. If using a voltage regulator make sure your PSU can deliver at least a 3V overhead over the desired output to your LEDs. Richard
  6. Wow! That looks serious and dangerous damage. BTW I meant to mention to repair/replace a cable or element you would need access to another soldering iron. Richard
  7. Over time cables tend to break internally at the point of maximum flexing usually near the point of entry into the device. As the cable strands begin to fray the cable at that point begins to thin meaning it allows less current through coupled with minor arcing of the frayed ends can cause a local build up of heat, it becomes a self perpetuating process resulting in a broken cable often fixed by cutting away the damaged section and shortening the cable. The cable can fail quite dramatically as once happened on SWAMBOs iron where a short developed and went with a bang. More worrying is the
  8. If the point motor fails then you probably have to lift the whole point to remove and replace. Attaching the motor separately to the baseboard means easier replacement but working under the baseboard might be an issue if you are getting on. Richard
  9. I have to agree that Lenz equipment is bombproof. However, though they regularly make announcements of new equipment on the way as pointed out above the wait can be years so much is just vapourware. As far as I can recall other than some new decoders the last addition to their system was an upgraded computer interface and that is some years back. Richard
  10. Heat shrink typically shrinks by a factor of 2:1 or 3:1. Find out what the outside diameter of the wire you intend to use and then select suitable heat shrink based on its shrinkage ratio. Alternatively, if you have the space use solderless LED connectors although they work out more espensive. https://www.rapidonline.com/truopto-c-911-2-54mm-led-holder-solderless-55-0167 Richard
  11. Had to do a double take on the photos. David you have three hands! Richard
  12. The OP mentions "miniature" toggle switches in his first post and later that some of his switches are permanently ON. This suggests that the switches were under-rated in the first place and not capable of handling the several Amps current involved using solenoid motors. Switches without robust internal contacts and adequate separation gaps will fail exactly like mentioned as contacts get welded together. Richard
  13. That takes me back to my school days working with tinplate. Just looking at the photo I can smell the soldering irons heating in little gas stoves and the tang of killed spirits. Richard
  14. From what I can see in the user manual each servo output is activated by grounding its input so to activate three servos from one switch all you need to do is connect their inputs to a single SPST switch through to ground. Doing it this way will preserve all the individual programmed movements wheras using a single output will mean all the servos will move the same amount. Richard
  15. Just come across these. They are available in 3 & 5 way, are mains rated although no detail on amperage. They are used to make changing zone valves in domestic heating systems plug and play. Those systems usually have a 3A fuse so they should be good enough for that at least. The connectors can be found cheaper on EBay. Richard https://www.plumbase.co.uk/5-way-connector-block-rege105-100007735-3530924
  16. It was the Rapid ones that I mainly used and found quite robust. Richard
  17. I can understand they were not allowed to excavate the paths and tracks but surely a bit of packing under the track with gravel or sand would have prevented many of the derailments seen and once finished the residue would have been easily swept away to form part of the path surface. In the first episode it showed track being laid past a pile of gravel, I thought they intended to use it but, no. The track did seem to perform better on paved surfaces with less derailments unless they were edited out? Richard
  18. I can vouch for quality pluggable terminal strips. I used them in a context where they were constantly being plugged and unplugged several times a day however, there is a lot of variety and I did find one cheap brand was not as robust. Again a lot will depend on how often you need to separate them. What I would suggest when using them is to fix one to under the board or on a small piece of ply with enough protrusion on the connecting side for the the other half to slide on and engage with the fixed strip I find doing this helps keep them in place rather than having the strip dangle freely.
  19. Well they saved the best till last. It was good to see Jenny and her team perform at last and "anyone who can breathe" has got to be the defining comment of the series. Jenny, I would get yourself a projector and screen put a presentation together and get round a few model rail shows, you should be able to make a bob or two out of it especially if you can get hold of any out takes. Well done to you and the crew. Richard
  20. I have quite enjoyed the series and look forward to the final episode. I have found it entertaining particularly the interaction between participants even some of the p**ts though cringeworthy at times have proved good entertainment. I admit I am not hung up on the semantics of wether it is a model railway or not and accept that the track used was the only reasonable solution considering the constraints involved. I am pretty sure our Victorian predecessors would have jumped at using a similar solution if the engineering was available. My only gripe if I can call it that is I would have pre
  21. If the select has a thermal cutout then it may take a little while to reset. Have you tried it since you had the issue? Richard
  22. Watch it on iPlayer it is the last item on the show approx 9:15 - 9:30
  23. Spoiler alert! Claire Barrett let the cat out of the bag in the Breakfast interview. Charlie Stayt demonstrated that put a train set in front of any bloke and out comes the big kid. Richard
  24. By the time you have paid a "sparky's" hourly rate to test it it you might be better off with a new PSU. Richard
  25. Tool station do a Duracell Industrial battery in AA & AAA sizes at a fraction of the cost of standard Duracell batteries sold retail. I have used them now for some time and although I have not really noted their longevity I do feel they are as good as the standard Duracell offering. Richard
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