just for example, dcc with bachmann dcc system

Discussion in 'DCC & Electronics' started by prodigy2k7, Dec 21, 2006.

  1. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 Member

    I have a simple question, i hope I give enough info to answer it.

    Lets say I buy the bachmann dcc control system thing and apparently you cna use up to 3 locos without a booster right?

    Can I simply hookup this control system with my track, a dcc ready loco (already has a decoder chip inside) and let it roll? or is there something else you must do?

    Also: how do you hookup terminals (sodering) to the track? Are there different points on the control system to allow more...power points? I dont know how to exactly say it, i want to supply power to more than 1 spot...

    actually more simply, if i had like 4 terminal tracks, can i wire all 4 to the bachmann dcc control system, or only 1 terminal? ive never used dcc im not 100% how it works.

    Also: does my old power box come into play?(the power supply thing that I already have) Do I even need it at all if im using this DCC system?

    I hope all of this makes sense...

  2. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    Kenny. I have the Bachmann system. All you do is read the directions, hook it up and go. It run up to 3 engines without the booster.

    Decoders come set to a default address of 3 so if you are running more you will have to user select different address setting for the others.

    I'm using a track with a plug in. I didn't like the plug so I soldered the wires on. You could run wires from one terminal to another but I have found that if you track connections are good you only need one connection. If you do run additional wiring MAKE SURE YOU DON"T CROSS WIRES!!!!! That will short the controller.

    If you have a Bachmann DC power pack it can be hooked up to the EZ command and used as a throttle for running 1 DC only engine.

  3. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    Hi Kenny, first off, DO NOT plug your dc into the dcc,(sorry old tanker), that plug is for bachmans walk around throttle. To run a dc loco use button ten, it is for analog,(straight dc locos).
    OK, you only need to hook up the two track wires, and operate. But, like Old Tanker said,each dcc loco needs to be programed to a different address, that way you can run up to three locos at one time without a booster. Also, with dcc, you really don't need power block wiring, since you control each loco independently . That's one of the great things about dcc. And yes, for best performance, solder the wires to the track.
    As far as the dc power supply, you can use it for building lights and other accessories. I use it to power my atlas turntable.
  4. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    Loren, yes can plug in a DC controller from Bachmann.

    From the Bachmann instruction manual, PG.6 under Standard DC locomotive Operation.

    Using the black interconnecting power cable provided, you can also connect a Bachmann DC controller to your E-Z Command control center as shown in figure 17. When connected, address 10 automatically converts from its original DC (analog) assignment to DCC (digital). Thus, a tenth digital address becomes available, and the DC controller will allow you or a friend to control a DC locomotive in conjunction with your E-Z Command system. The Bachmann #44212 power pack, available from hobby retailers, is ideally suited to this application (figure 18).

  5. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    Old Tanker, I stand corrected, I shoulda read before I typed.
  6. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 Member

    I am still confused, DC is just direct current right? Are there two diff types of trains? AC and DC? or what? Anyways, quick question...

    If I buy 3 locos with DCC onboard, would it work with DC?
  7. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    DC is just direct current. DCC is digital signals sent through the track. It is AC.

    Some Atlas DCC equiped engines come with a jumper that has to be set to the type of controller. You would have to check with the manufacturer to see if they are compatable.

  8. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    DC is direct current (most often associated with batteries or devices that take batteries and/or some sort of adapter to power them). AC is alternating current - commonly associated with 110/120V household power.

    There are trains that run on AC, but the majority of HO scale trains are powered via some sort of transformer that converts 110V household AC to something between 12 - 16V DC (at maximum power).

    The difference with DCC is that the track is at full power all the time, and the decoder (computer, more or less) on board each locomotive controls the motor according to a separate set of signals. It is very much like a computer network.

    See www.railwaybob.com, and follow the links to DCC for a good, basic explanation.

    Not all DCC equipped locos can be run on DC, although many can. In some cases they come this way, in other cases you must program the decoder to accept running )and therefore behave properly) on DC. Some decoders - such as some sound decoders - cannot run on DC at all.

  9. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    Loren, no problem.

  10. NYNH&H

    NYNH&H Member

    You need to read up on DCC, the theory, the power, the systems, the wiring, the programming, etc, before buying. A DC loco cannot run on DCC, but a DCC loco runs just fine on DC, just without functions or anything. You will probably want to look at a full featured system like the Digitrax Zephyr ($US160), as it can program etc, etc. See here:

  11. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    The Digitrax Zephyr in fact has the ability to run one "DC" loco (i.e. without a decoder) on address 00 (zero-zero). It make a horrible noise, and is not recommended as a long term solution nor should it be done when the loco will sit without moving for long periods. But it can be done.

    Part of the reason for this is the DC supplied isn't really DC in the traditional sense. THe DC loco does not move (and makes the horrendous noise) because the motor goes from ful power forwards to full power in reverse many times per second.

    Despite NYNH&H's statement above, beware of DCC running on DC - some decoders such as my Soundtraxx that is in my P2K 0-6-0 WILL get fried if run on DC. And others like BLI DCC sound equipped locos make sounds on DC and DCC.

  12. NYNH&H

    NYNH&H Member

    True, you can zero stretch, thats a complicated one to explain, so for all practical purposes it doesn't exist. Haven't heard of DCC decoders that will be fried on DC. I have heard of ones that just plain don't work on DC. This sounds like a MAJOR design flaw, as many people have DC at the club/ DCC at home or visa versa, or operate on other people's layouts with their locos, and go between DC and DCC layouts. I have used Bachman DCC equipped locos at the club (modular layout- ancient DC Aristos) many times, and they are just fine.
  13. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 Member

    grr forget it...
  14. prodigy2k7

    prodigy2k7 Member

    why cant a dc loco run on dcc?
  15. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    So maybe I overstated a little, but the Soundtraxx manual states "DSD-LC series decoders do not work in 'analog' mode", meaning they will simply not function on DC powered track. I would not want to risk anything happening to this decoder, so I will not test the theory... ;) :) The DCC gurus at my local club also advise against it. They seem to know what they are talking about.

    Most decoders have a CV that will allow you to turn on or off the ability to run on DC track. The local modular club requires that this is actually turned off, since if there (for whatever reason) is a problem with the system or the decoder, you don't want your loco to go to full DC power and rocket off the layout at top speed... ;) :D

    Prodigy2K7 - Don't worry about the technicallities of it. A DC loco can run on DCC powered track using the "00" address mentioned above, it's just not recommended for long periods or as a permanent work around to installing a decoder. That's because the method the DCC system uses to control a DC loco is very hard on the motor. In addition, without a decoder, there is no way to turn lights on and off, give the loco a unique address, or take advantage of any of the other features afforded by DCC.

    Hope that gives you more information to help you decide.

  16. NYNH&H

    NYNH&H Member

    Ah, OK. I think the Soundtraxx equipped locos just sit there and do nothing.

    As for running a DC loco on DCC, not only is it a bad idea, but many manufacturers don't even have this "feature" (an annoyance that has to be turned off). Digitrax and Bachman do, luckily there is a way to turn it off on the Digitrax system. On a larger layout (club, modular), it will lower the data rate by up to 33x, and make loco response really slow. If the loco has a coreless motor, it will fry it. With decoders being $13 in a ten pack, there is just little reason to use zero stretching. I did use it for a few minutes when I first got my Bachman system, and only had one DCC loco, and it made the loco make a HORRIBLE noise from the essentially AC power it was exposing the motor to.

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