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I am building a layout, and I am testing track and connections with a DC supply and controller.I have a gaugemaster prodigy, but I prefer to leave it until the layout is complete. My question is, can I test with DC whilst wiring for DCC, and can I connect an autofrog up and test it with DC?

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Testing as you go along is advisable, if you get something wrong it usually only means one step backwards to resolve it. Having to check out a whole layout to find where a problem has manifested can be a real PITA.

 

Richard

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Smaller sections are easier to troubleshoot, so above the board, I wire a layout exactly the same for DCC as I do DC.

I stopped relying on point blades for conductivity many years ago & power each section from a switch.

Testing as you go would therefore be exactly the same for DC as DCC.

 

As easy way to prevent short circuits is to wire up a battery & bell as you lay & connect the track. The track acts as a switch & short circuiting it would simply be closing the switch. If you hear the bell, you know you have an issue.

The best bit is that because the bell goes off straight away, you will hear when you have an issue, which makes troubleshooting even easier.

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On 08/07/2020 at 10:04, Pete the Elaner said:

As easy way to prevent short circuits is to wire up a battery & bell as you lay & connect the track. The track acts as a switch & short circuiting it would simply be closing the switch. If you hear the bell, you know you have an issue.

The best bit is that because the bell goes off straight away, you will hear when you have an issue, which makes troubleshooting even easier.

 

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.

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My cheap multimeter has a buzzer built in to check continuity.  I use this to check every dropper as I go along as can't rely on my soldering! Comforting noise & means you dont have to look at the meter.   Works for a person ignorant of electricity & never quite sure what it all means! ( To think I used to interview electrical engineers )

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Most Frog Juicers do not work on DC there are circuits that do  but they may need a separate power supply in addition to the track supply. I am petty sure the gaugemaster one is for DCC only. that said it seems to do its job just fine. 

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