Help with Infrared

Discussion in 'G / O / S Scale Model Trains' started by FrankG, Dec 18, 2005.

  1. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    My father-in-law has a Lionel layout and is having problems getting his new infrared controller to work. It's the 153 IR Controller. He's using standard DC power and connecting it to a grade crossing arm. Breaking the infrared beam does not trigger the device. Since I model in N and the Lionel 3 rail track scares me a bit, I'm not sure what advice to give him. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
  2. spankybird

    spankybird OTTS Founder

    Do you know the item number and make of the crossing gates?
  3. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    I don't....all I know is that it's a single crossing gate arm with red and white stripes. No crossbuck, lights or anything like that. Just the arm. It's probably 5+ years old (I'm guessing).
  4. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    BTW...if it's absolutely necessary, I can get the item number.
  5. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Frank: Is there a reason he's using DC power on a Lionel layout? I don't have one of those things myself.
  6. Ray Marinaccio

    Ray Marinaccio Active Member

    I'm not that familiar with that IR controller ,but if the crossing gate is an older Lionel it may draw more current than the controller can handle.
  7. spankybird

    spankybird OTTS Founder

    Ray - good question.

    Frank - is he running the IR Controler from Track power or axu power and if aux power is that also DC?

    Does he have the gate wired to the Normally Open side?
  8. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    OK....I'm probably wrong on the DC. I wasn't thinking when I posted that. He's probably running it on AC aux. Can you explain what you mean by the "Normally Open Side"?
  9. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Open and closed -- closed means that the circuit is complete, light a light bulb turned on. Open means turned off. The detector should have a terminal that is normally closed (on), unless a train is detected, then it turns that terminal off and the normally open (off) terminal is turned on. This is like operating a 3-way switch or SPDT. The crossing gate should be normally off.
  10. spankybird

    spankybird OTTS Founder

    Dave had it correct.

    Normally Open (NO) is the circuit is open, no current pass thru

    Normally Closed (NC) is circuit is closed, current pass thru

    I would think that you would want to wire your gate to the NO. Then when the trains passes it would close the circuit and operate the gates.

    Another thing to check. How is the power getting to the gate thru the ID. Is it from track power and do you have it on?

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