DCC or not

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bud
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DCC or not

Postby bud » Sat Aug 21, 2010 10:32 pm

hi all

iam fairly new to model railways but got the bug, i had a small board layout in my flat but now bought a house, now iam gonna re build my layout bigger and better in the large shed at the bottom of the garden (its peaceful down there lol), not well up on dcc but do i need to go down that route with a big layout? thanks

craw607
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Re: DCC or not

Postby craw607 » Sat Aug 21, 2010 11:16 pm

Hi bud
Welcome to the forum.
I do;nt think you have to use DCC for large layouts.
It's possible to have DC and section track.
I personally run DCC but the more knowledgable will give a better explaination.
John

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sishades
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Re: DCC or not

Postby sishades » Sun Aug 22, 2010 4:16 pm

If you can afford it then DCC is the way to go. The benefits far outweigh the costs and you will be able to run your layout like a proper railway.
High towards the far post,Howard with a header,Hes done it!Steve Howard has scored for Leicester City,Bedlam here at the Walkers Stadium. the Leeds United players are flat out on the turf in utter despair. Leicester City are going to win again

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Zunnan
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Re: DCC or not

Postby Zunnan » Sun Aug 22, 2010 4:42 pm

sishades wrote:The benefits far outweigh the costs and you will be able to run your layout like a proper railway.


Thats a bit misleading. If you're competent with wiring, there is no benefit what so ever to using DCC. It just opens up the possibilities of constant lighting when the trains not in motion, coach lighting (at great cost) and sound. To me these are little more than gimmicks, not to mention that the more equipment you have running off the DCC system, the more boosters you need, and so the more complex the wiring becomes as you start needing to wire in power districts, allow for reverse modules, and sort out what point motors go to which decoder etc. which entirely negates the 'DCC is easier to wire' argument...and then needing to remember what address relates to what model!

At the end of the day, if you want a large layout and you either are completely inept at wiring or you want to use sound fitted locomotives then go DCC; but don't expect it to be as simple as some will lead you to believe. If you are relatively competent with wiring (how hard can two wires be? Honestly) and aren't interested in running sound fitted models then there is very little benefit in forking out hundreds of pounds extra on a DCC system and all of the required decoders when DC and some forward planning can get you pretty much the same results.

For the record, I use both DCC and DC on my layouts. I'm not one of these anti-DCC people, I just don't have the blinkered view that because somethings newer it is automatically better. Sometimes it is completely the opposite (and I'm not referring to DCC with that last comment, thats a stab at my employers)

DCC is NOT the way forward, it is merely another path. :wink:

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Flashbang
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Re: DCC or not

Postby Flashbang » Sun Aug 22, 2010 6:59 pm

Hi
Sorry I disagree! :shock:
DCC IMO is the way forward. :D
Especially if its a new entrant to the hobby and they are about to embark on their first railway build.

dc control cannot allow two or more locos to run on the same rails each independently controlled.
dc control cannot allow a controlled moving loco to slowly come right onto another stationary loco, coupling up together if required.
dc control cannot allow directional or other lighting to be turned on/off at will.
dc control cannot allow a loco with sound functions to run through their sound sequences while stationary or even while moving - Horns/whistles etc.

DCC control does not use Isolating track sections or section switches. So assaying on wiring and switches is gained.
DCC control does have all track sections permanently live. Allowing lights and sounds or even shunting moves etc to be made with the entrance point set against that move.

DCC control is not necessarily expensive to initially set up. A basic console can cost from around £60 with the excellent NCE powerCab costing around £130ish.

Locos sold new are now often offered with factory fitted decoders (DCC fitted) at little extra cost to the non fitted versions.
If the purchaser wishes to fit their own choice of decoder, then the DCC ready version is a little cheaper, but the cost of the decoder will have to be added. Approx £8 to £25 depending on decoder choice.

Some four or so years ago I changed from dc to DCC on an existing layout with some 50 plus locos to convert.
So far only around 30 of these have been converted. The remainder I didn't use that often on the dc layout! So there is no rush to convert everything.
All my latest new loco purchases have been DCC fitted as they have been sound locos.
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Broken? It was working correctly when I left it.

noel
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Re: DCC or not

Postby noel » Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:09 pm

+

I agree, but stick with DC for your points/turnouts and
off-track accessories.

+

Bigmet
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Re: DCC or not

Postby Bigmet » Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:50 pm

Item one in the DCC benefit list is the permanent pseudo-AC combined power and control signal that is always present. The loco may be moving at a dead slow crawl, but the decoder has full track power at all times. What this does for reliability of running has to be seen to be appreciated. With relatively little attention to railhead and wheel cleaning, locos start and run slowly and smoothly every time.
The ability to adjust every decoder's settings to obtain uniform performance characteristics from very different mechanisms is very helpful for realistic operation. Acceleration and top speeds are preset, and the loco is locked in to that performance until the preset values are altered.
Then comes the benefit of complete flexibility in operation, of which some examples follow.
You can park locos nose to tail in a plain track siding, without the faff of having to have an isolating section per loco to be parked, and 'gappiness' because each isolating section has to be as long as the longest loco.
You can operate an assisting engine or diesel to haul an electric 'dead' onto the train, anywhere.
Banking operations and addition of tail traffic are likewise simply achieved.
The infamous return loop is dealt with by an automatic module.

locoworks
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Re: DCC or not

Postby locoworks » Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:01 pm

DC = 'Dated Control' :twisted:

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Bigglesof266
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Re: DCC or not

Postby Bigglesof266 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 12:59 am

Bud ultmately choice is always the users preference. Both can be made to work.

For my money?

If you value sound advice, +1 for what sishades, flashbang and Bigmet have already said.

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Silver Surfer
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Re: DCC or not

Postby Silver Surfer » Mon Aug 23, 2010 8:45 am

Hi bud, welcome.

You don't 'Need' to go down any route other than the one you choose - it's your railway and you do with it exactly what you want, if DCC appeals to you then have a dabble if it doesn't, stick with DC. There are no hard and fast rules to railway modelling, you do what you want.

Achieving what you want is the purpose of this forum and, should you have a question about doing something you don't quite understand, then just ask - most of the time you'll get a simple no nonsense answer as to how it can be done.

Only you can decide on DC or DCC. Many have asked before and the overwhelming advice seems to be research all systems available within your budget before taking the leap. I did this a couple of years ago, went DCC and have not regretted it at all.

For what it's worth, I disagree with Zunnan in that (IMHO) DCC far out performs DC if you utilise it properly by adding far more realistic operation of trains on a layout. I think he is very much in the minority but what he has said is his opinion, to which he is entitled and which I respect. I go along with the more positive opinions given by the other guys.....

Mike
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sishades
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Re: DCC or not

Postby sishades » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:27 am

DCC is NOT the way forward, it is merely another path


all together now.......Oh yes it is! :D
High towards the far post,Howard with a header,Hes done it!Steve Howard has scored for Leicester City,Bedlam here at the Walkers Stadium. the Leeds United players are flat out on the turf in utter despair. Leicester City are going to win again

locoworks
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Re: DCC or not

Postby locoworks » Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:27 pm

sishades wrote:
DCC is NOT the way forward, it is merely another path


all together now.......Oh yes it is! :D


it is another path really, along with battery,live steam, clockwork etc. it is also without doubt the most technological route and it also offers the most control options. in that sense it is the way forward, just not the only way to go. if you model Z gauge, there are some loco's that you just can't fit a chip into as yet so it isn't always an option for some people even if they want it.

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sishades
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Re: DCC or not

Postby sishades » Tue Aug 24, 2010 4:04 pm

I agree with the above statement, I was thinking purely in OO gauge. For N gage and smaller, then it does get fiddly but not impossible, thus DC may be the easier option.
High towards the far post,Howard with a header,Hes done it!Steve Howard has scored for Leicester City,Bedlam here at the Walkers Stadium. the Leeds United players are flat out on the turf in utter despair. Leicester City are going to win again

bigbob
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Re: DCC or not

Postby bigbob » Tue Aug 24, 2010 4:23 pm

If you want a train set DC, if you want a model railway DCC :D
Growing old is compulsary, growing up is optional!


ALL CLASS 50`S SHOULD BE CUT UP INTO SMALL PIECES AND USED FOR SOMETHING MORE USEFUL LIKE A PAPER-WEIGHT

sol
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Re: DCC or not

Postby sol » Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:07 am

bigbob wrote:If you want a train set DC, if you want a model railway DCC :D


I can only assume bigbob, that comment is in jest as there has been many fine model railways in the UK alone ,that used DC
( DC = direct Current or dated control or digital control :D )

such as the West Midland by Edward Beal and Buckingham Great Central by Peter Denny.

The choice is hard for those with an existing operating layout but for those just coming into the hobby - DCC becauser the cost is not that much more & learning curve for DC or DCC is about the same.
regards
Ron Solly


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