Circuitry

 

This page will be devoted to details of all the circuitry that will be needed for this project.

There are many things circuitry related that need to be sorted out. Do I go DCC? I would love to but N gauge can be a bit of a pain in regards to chipping your rolling stock - especially Dapol's locos and I would like to have several class 73's for this project. If I don't go DCC, how do I wire the layout? I'm going to want to operate a lot of the sidings independently of the mainlines but how do you wire a layout so that you can do this and have access to the sidings from the mainline without having short circuits, etc? Do I have working signals? Again, I would love to, but availability of N gauge signals is not very good. I only know of Roger Murray doing any as BHE have now stopped supplying them.

One of the things I would love to do is to be able to fully control the layout from a PC. Can I do that? If so, then how? What about software? How about connecting a DCC operated layout to a PC?

 

Going DCC

 

Well I've taken the plunge. I was at the Chatham & District MRC's annual exhibition when I noticed that Express Models were offering a 10% show discount on the marked price on Lenz DCC equipment. That meant that a Set 100, which was normally £244.50, was available for £220.05. I promptly decided to buy one as well as a Silver Mini decoder, which was also available for a 10% show discount, to try out.

I needed a transformer that had a 16V AC output as well but couldn't afford a Lenz TR150 on top of the Set 100 and Silver Mini. Luckily, I have a Gaugemaster M1 transformer which has 2 16V AC outputs with a sufficient current rating (up to 1A) to supply the Set 100.

I've tried the Set 100 out and it works nicely. I haven't installed the decoder yet so was limited to using the loco 0 setting to control the loco. Setting 0 allows one DC loco to be run on a DCC layout. The loco does have a loud whine - which the Lenz manual does warn will happen - but works fine.

Here's 5 photos showing the Set 100 on my test track layout:-

Lenz Set 100 box set
The set's components
The set wired up to the test track
The Lenz Set 100
The Set's components
Wired up to the test track
Controlling loco 0
Speed setting displayed
Controlling loco 0
The speed setting display

 

I've now got 3 decoders and I've also bought some Gerry Spencer DCC conversion kits for converting old, Poole-built Graham Farish class 47/37s. They'll do the job for my class 47s - obviously! - but should also be suitable for my class 50s and class 08s. I'll be doing a little write-up for each of the classes I convert and a list of the each of the converted types is listed below:-

As with most aspects of this project, there is a forum devoted to this subject matter on the site's forum. I've included a link to the forum below should you be interested.

 

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Page last updated: 24th May 2007

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