Electrical Help Needed

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Doc Holliday, May 21, 2005.

  1. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Member

    Here's a pic of my track plan. I've added 20 GA feeder wires at the red and purple boxes and am ready to unstall 12 GA buss wires, one for each of the two mainlines. I'm using two DC transformers. I was planning on basically following each mainline with the buss wire, attaching feeders along the way. A buddy of mine (who's quite an accomplished moder railroader) says to use a home run for each set of feeders and then terminal gang them to the transformer. Sine the overall layout is 8' x 11', that's gonna take a whole bunch more wire. While I respect my buddy's opinion, I thought I'd see what the rest of you accomplished modelers thought.


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  2. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way


    Either approach is OK, but going the home run way simply gives you a longer run using a smaller gage wire to the power source. This could result in a very slight voltage loss depending on the run length and the load. 20 gage wire is rated for about two amps. On the other hand, using the bus technique, 12 gage is rated for 20 amps, and there should be less voltage drop, even where you have long runs.

    One trick I used with systems we built that had a lot of lamps or distributive loads, was to run the power bus from the power supply, circle it around in a loop and terminate the end back at the power supply. This gives you two paths for the current to flow and basically balances out the current draw. It is a technique used in early security systems so that if anyone were to cut a wire, there would still be a path to allow the system to function. It's call "redundency".
  3. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    one other thought on a bus is to run power supply in the middle of the bus .
  4. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Member

    Thanks for the responses guys. I would have thought I'd get more replys since practically everybody has done it one way or the other.

    I ended up being more conservative and am running individual home runs.


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