DCC Question

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DCC Question

Postby IAN1955 » Sat Sep 28, 2019 9:13 pm

Still new to this, a friend of mine said why do you not go DCC instead of Analogue - pause OK what is DCC? so he sets of to explain, after 20 minutes I lost the will to live, seeing he lives in another country I could not ask him to pop round and show me.

OK I get the idea but how do you wire it up, also my Diesel Locos are not DCC, questions.
1. How do you wire it up.
2. Can you get my Locos to be converted to this DCC system.


NOTE Early October I am moving house and will be able to start again.

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Re: DCC Question

Postby Ironduke » Sat Sep 28, 2019 10:38 pm

Start here http://www.newrailwaymodellers.co.uk/el ... ontrol.htm

1. Same as DC only you don't need any switches.
2. Yes

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Re: DCC Question

Postby Paul-H » Sun Sep 29, 2019 9:17 am

For anything other than a simple single loop DCC is much easier to wire

Loco conversion depends on the loco, some have decoder sockets built in some need to be hard wired, some need more work than others to convert, so it depends on model, make and age.

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Re: DCC Question

Postby heda » Sun Sep 29, 2019 9:52 am

Wiring - with DCC all the track is constantly live at full power so the usual method is to solder a 'dropper' wire to each section of track and connect them under the board to a single 'bus' wire. You may need to fit 'isolating rail joiners' on some of the points.
I would recommend taking a look at this website for more detailed information.

As Paul-H said any locomotive can be converted but conversion depends if it is 'DCC ready', which means has a socket for the chip to plug in to. Or at the other extreme you may have to cut away or grind inside the body shell to make room for a chip to fit.

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Re: DCC Question

Postby muggins » Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:40 am

FWIW what stopped me going to DCC when I got back into railway modelling three years ago was just one thing - the cost. And by that I mean the extra cost of the controller and whatever modules may be needed for point operation, frog switching and whatnot, to say nothing of the cost of the gubbins I'd need to add to each locomotive.

Maybe if I wasn't happy doing the simple wiring needed for isolating sections and whatnot, and if sound coming from the locomotives (at yet more extra cost) appealed to me I would have revised my opinion, but as things have turned out I'm perfectly happy with analogue - particularly since I got my Morley controller.

Different strokes, different folks ...

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Re: DCC Question

Postby Paul-H » Sun Sep 29, 2019 8:47 pm

FWIW Point switching and frog control can be the same with DC & DCC

Decoders start at £9.99 for all the common connection types 6, 8, 18 & 21 pin and wired varieties

Search for LaiseDCC for low cost nothing fancy decoders

As to the cost of a controller, if you have a PC or Laptop you can go down the DCC++ on an Arduino route for around £10

So DCC can be quite cheap, especially just to get you started, then you can update or change the way you control things if you want.

Not saying the following is recommended but I just built a 15x4 foot layout consisting of a double loop and two 12 road fiddle YARDS and used Pecos new Unifrog points (yes it's N-Gauge) and just to test it before the bus wires and droppers were installed I just soldered 2 wires to each loop and gave it all a test and every single bit of track worked, just using the fish plates for connection between each section of rail.

Obviously not recommended but it shows how simple DCC can be

The Bus wires and droppers are now all in place.


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Re: DCC Question

Postby Bigmet » Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:23 am

Why did I switch to DCC after forty years satisfactory DC operation? Because it offers superior control, and the advantages increase as the size of the layout and loco stock grow.

What I really like is how so many operational restictions are just washed away.
Every loco can have its performance customised - in my case made uniform in groups with others.
There's no restrictions on parking locos, they can go nose to tail anywhere, no need for isolating sections.
Moves the real railway performs: double heading, moving trots of locos, banking, are available anywhere on the layout.
Starting and slow speed performance is immaculate, the permanent full track voltage means locos don't 'find a dead spot'.
The individually settable inertia provision leads to very smooth movement through the speed range.

What I have learned.
Don't bother with older motor mechanisms. DCC is optimised for low current draw can motors in my experience.
Don't expect DCC to improve a less than good mechanism, they need to be mechanically well sorted.
DCC is designed for loco control. No real benefit for running point motors, unless route setting automation is required.

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Re: DCC Question

Postby Spike » Wed Oct 02, 2019 4:19 pm

I am just starting out in my first model railway.

I have gone big as I wanted to do it over a period of time, what i am finding dcc can be as cheap or as expensive as you want it to be. Track is the same whether DC or DCC, the controller can come as part of a starter set (probably the cheapest way to start) then it is all down to you as to how you want the set up what locos you want etc etc.

One problem I have found is though, my set up is going to be 1880's wild west so nearly all my locos will come from Bachman (expense i know but you only live once) and i bought a Bachman loco whilst on holiday in America this year, and my Hornby controller would not find or work the loco no matter what i did, so i bought a second hand Bachman controller for £50 off eBay, little used and still in its original wrapper (bargain) this is another way to get cheap things.

Like I say I am still learning all this before I start my set up so my knowledge is limited so good luck with your layout.

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