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55F

Electrical issue

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I have a three-way Peco point feeding three dead-end sidings with SEEP point motors.  Therefore power supply fed from toe of point and no insulated rail joiners.  Two sidings work perfectly the third is dead even when selected!  Wiring checked thoroughly and the only possible cause of the problem in my eyes is a dodgy switch IN the point motor.  How likely would that be?  Thoughts please.

55f

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In my experience, very likely.

 

I helped a friend connect of these to an exhibition layout a few years ago (all brand new). I was horrifed when I saw ho crude the switch was so I bought some microswitches as a back-up solution just in case.

2 of the switches did not work from new, so it was decided that it would be better to re-wired all 5 with microswitches rather then suffer a failure at an exhibition. This took about 35 minutes for 2 of us to fit all 5.

Microswitches take a little setting up to align properly but they have performed trouble-free for several years.

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8 minutes ago, 55F said:

I have a three-way Peco point feeding three dead-end sidings with SEEP point motors.  Therefore power supply fed from toe of point and no insulated rail joiners.  Two sidings work perfectly the third is dead even when selected!  Wiring checked thoroughly and the only possible cause of the problem in my eyes is a dodgy switch IN the point motor.  How likely would that be?  Thoughts please.

55f

 

That is likely. The switch contacts in SEEP motors are notorious for not quite making contact.

 

Easiest fix, although not always successful, is to move the point motor a fraction to one side. A fraction! If that doesn't work then move it two fractions the other way. :) I know that this might cause problems with the screw holes that you have carefully drilled into the baseboard.

 

If you have another PM1 then use that as a replacement.

 

My least helpful resolution is to use a different point motor, but you probably don't want to do that. :rolleyes:

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Many thanks guys.  I must have been lucky, I have used Seep motors for years without any problems...….until now! I just needed confirmation that the 'Seep' could be the offender.  Many thanks.

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A squirt of switch cleaner may help, it's solved my switching problems with Seep point motors in the past.

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I have caused quite a snotty reply in the past by stating that I found them unreliable.

Maybe quality has varied over time?

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A squirt of switch cleaner sounds worth a try, if that fails I shall replace the point motor.  

 

On the basis that you can only speak as you find there will be some who love 'em and those who don't.  I may be moving to the latter group!!

 

Thanks again for your responses.

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I did have an electrofrog point which went 'dead', despite being wired at the toe end. After many naughty words, I finally found that the toe of the point was ever-so-slightly not closing against the stock rail. The solution was to adjust the blade by gently turning the blade out, such that the contact was re-made, without affecting the through running qualities of the point. We are talking a couple of Microns here, but just enough to re-establish electrical contact. 

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3 hours ago, tomparryharry said:

I did have an electrofrog point which went 'dead', despite being wired at the toe end. After many naughty words, I finally found that the toe of the point was ever-so-slightly not closing against the stock rail. The solution was to adjust the blade by gently turning the blade out, such that the contact was re-made, without affecting the through running qualities of the point. We are talking a couple of Microns here, but just enough to re-establish electrical contact. 

That is exactly why many modellers add auxiliary contacts, to stop this kind of thing. Fairly simple to install, especially if you do the work at the time of installation. 

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Hello Kevin, interesting. I've never used an auxiliary contact (yet). I've always assumed that a properly set-up point would provide any electrical continuity, apart from the polarity being switched at point of use. I have always paid attention to the cleanliness of the toe when it closes with the stock rail. In times past, I've cleaned out crud from the gap, and it had always returned said point to a working condition. A  slight tweak at the top of the railhead at the toe was in my case, enough to 'do the biz'. 

 

Cheers,

Ian.

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Thanks again chaps for the useful reminders and information.  Today I 'squirted the electronic cleaner' and made some very minor adjustments  to the track alignment [and hence the point throw] which solved the problem.......hopefully for some time.  It never ceases to surprise me that I still learn new  things about model railways after many years of dabbling with the hobby!  This Forum is excellent for learning from the mistakes and problems  of others.  As they say, life is too short to only learn from one's own mistakes!!

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