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  1. Apologies if this is a bit Noddy for you, but some explanation is better than none. A CV is a characteristic of a decoder which controls what the decoder does. Each CV controls a particular part of the decoder functionality. CV Numbers are standard designations set by NMRA e.g. CV 1 is the decoder short address, CV 2 is kick start voltage, CV 3 is Acceleration, etc and so on. Some are set by NMRA as standards and some are used by manufacturers for their own purposes, which is where one decoder can differ from another e.g. volume adjustment or decoder reset. You enter the number of the CV you want to change. CV Value is the allowable range of values a CV can have. Some can have a range of values from 0-255, some are much more restricted.
  2. Often a controller reset can sort out awry behaviour. Then try decoder resets.
  3. You can definitely loop an RM program, but as you say unless you crash the buffers now and again to ‘reset’ the time based sequence its a bit hit and miss on continuing accuracy. I used the repeat command to stress test a sound decoder, by incrementing the speed up and down every thirty seconds, whilst playing each sound in sequence on and off. The repeat command let me run it for several hours behind a firmly closed door to avoid upsetting domestic management. Now if you had the Hornby loco detection system then that would solve all you problems. Unfortunately they have yet to bring it to market after more than five years of waiting. Train-Tech do a signal based relay system that makes a train wait for clearance, but that would be stand alone not under RM program control, as any waiting time time at a signal would not reflect into the program and hence it would throw it all out after the first stop. See the video here http://www.train-tech.com ...links on that page to relay control and train control.
  4. To answer your question - yes - as the buzzing is a result of the DC controller output characteristics. Decoders are powered by a DCC waveform and output their own pulse width modulated (PWM) DC to the motor.
  5. On some locos you can get away with using bi-colour leds. E.g. red-white or red-yellow. In such a case be aware for DCC you need common anode leds not the more usual common cathode.
  6. I normally use a 9v battery and buzzer connected to the rails but on my latest build I was using terminal boards with an led live indicator, which was enough to trigger the buzzer as a fault. It meant breaking into the led resistor circuit on each board as I went until all the wiring was done and proven, whereupon I reconnected all board indicators again.
  7. Dagworth said It is always worth checking your soldering iron tip for continuity. Some cheaper ones are lethal to any electronics.
  8. My standard method is probe to one rail and ground clip to the other. I have had all four probes on my Picoscope connected to the Elite at the same time... Main Track probe to left rail and ground to right rail Prog to Prog track ditto Boost output ditto but see note below. Xpressnet via a breakout cable. ...what you have to watch with a USB scope is connecting multiple devices via USB as the cable screen-ground may not be at equal potential on all devices leading to a fault. E.g. controller and scope and other external device connected to the same PC by USB. Note - I did find a crossover fault on the Elite motherboard which a user would never notice in that the Boost output logic was contra the main track, but as the Hornby Booster module is also a reversing loop module in practice this opposite polarity would be switched at the track as soon as detected. Be aware if trying this at home as it killed the Elite Boost and Prog circuit. Safer to probe at the track of each power district rather than the controller outputs.
  9. Railmaster can record and allow a user to modify programs which will follow a sequence of timed events, which could be seen as automatic control of a sort. E.g. running locos for speed and direction, operating functions, operating points and signals and applying conditional events.
  10. If you get your Select updated to latest firmware then it becomes a reasonably capable basic controller albeit still limited to loco addresses 1-59. It will then operate all functions F0-F28 and will be able to change any CVs the decoder supports. Update is by return to Hornby once you have a returns number from HCC. Cost £18 incl VAT and postage one way. The Select however cannot connect to a PC seeing as Hornby canned their Select-a-LInk PC interface cable, so it can only be used with RM as a Walkabout handset to an Elite.. RM of course only works with Hornby controllers until someone cracks the handshake protocol.
  11. The problem with Picoscope DCC serial decoding is the software hasn’t been fully developed yet to cope with 14 bit multifunction decoders. It is on their agenda but with no immediate priority. I have a link file that decodes the DCC binary commands into plain text in the lower screen table (as far as the software allows). If anyone with a Picoscope would like a copy on the understanding it is work in progress them PM me and I will send it over. You can always improve it and pass it back.
  12. I am at a loss as to why changing CVs would badly affect the decoder fitted with a stay alive to the point of failure. The only things I would have thought likely to have had any affect would be BEMF, PI (CVs 150-->) and DC running as these are the only characteristics directly affecting the motor. What about functions output relative to a stay alive as TTS decoders have an unprotected output of 100mA apiece. Maybe someone with more knowledge about decoders with stay alive than me could make suggestion.
  13. The only possible way to use a Select with RM is by connecting it as a slave walkabout to an Elite which can be used with RM. As stated there can only be one DCC controller connected directly to the track, any others must be as walkabout handsets. The limiting factor is the Select has no USB to connect it to a PC, but it has an RJ11/12 to connect it to an Elite using a special cable, although the industry standard one I bought in Wilco/Wilkinsons works. As stated Hornby bean counters in their infinite wisdom cancelled the Select-a-Link cable which allowed the Select to talk to a PC hence RM by way of a USB to RJ11/12 adaptor. You can get a similar adaptor cable from Gaugemaster for their controller but at over twice the price the Hornby one would have been. I don’t know if that would work with the Hornby kit. Given the number of Selects out there Hornby could have boosted their Select firmware update traffic (which vastly improves the Select capability) as well as increasing sales of RM by flogging that cable - badly missed opportunity in my opinion.
  14. Each failure would have to be investigated on its merits Richard, i.e. values/spec of the components used for the stay alive and method of installation (which pads were soldered to - the edge pads or inside the bridge area). Once such data was collated it could be passed to Hornby for a failure mode analysis.
  15. If you can see the speaker it will confirm. 3.5 has a 100 ohm and 4.0 has a 4/8 ohm (can never remember which 4 or 8).
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