Discussion in 'FAQs' started by DeaconF, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. DeaconF

    DeaconF Member

    Can someone confirm a problem I had with a Rivorossi Steam engine. Specifically a Hudson. I was told that Rivorossi has electrical pickup on one side of the engine and the other side of the tender. This caused a break in power on my layout because I didn't offset my gaps. there is probably about an inch of space between the rearmost engine wheel and the first tender wheel. Is this a common thing with Rivorossi? I know what you are going to say. switch to DCC however not right now. any and all help will be appreciated. thanks Frank
  2. Roger Hensley

    Roger Hensley Member

    I don't understand. This is common on many steam locos and some of the older long wheelbased diesels. I know of no one who offsets their gaps. Don't you have power to both blocks from the same source?

    DCC may solve it, but you have some sort of wiring problem I would think.
  3. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Deacon: This is common also on a lot of Brass engines. There are a couple of things you can do.
    You should not be running from one controller to another. There should be a block -- at least long enough for a loco and tender or a set of your diesels -- that can be switched between your power packs. Then you run the loco in under pack A, stop it, and switch the block to pack B.
    The other technique is common rail wiring. One rail (say the inner one) is selected as common and connected together over all the layout. Then you don't have the problem at the gaps. This cannot be done if you have a dual control power pack with only one transformer (but I don't think you do.)
  4. DeaconF

    DeaconF Member


    Thanks for the input David. I know common rail would be the best way to wire but I didn't and now I have a dogs breakfast. I do have multiple power packs. In fact I can run 5 trains at the same time however I never do. Taking it down to its lowest demoninator - Pack one powers the train into a Peco electrofrog turnout. Straight through on the same pack. Right turn into the turnout with both rails gapped at the end of the turnout and pack two takes over the power. Is this sceanerio, one that would cause this hick-up?? if so could I stager the gap over the length of the engine and tender? Just to confuse a little more - In the worst case pack one is a dual control TechII - I assume one transformer with 2 controls. These Rivarossi engines a quite nice and I hope I can work it out. I will just have to do some experiments to make sure it is my wiring and not the engine. thanks again Frank
  5. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Your best bet in my opinion would be to put a section of track as a separate short block between each block that changes power packs. Then wire it with a double pole/double throw switch. The train would enter the short section on one pack. Once the locomotive and tender is in the section, throw the switch to change it over to the other power pack and the train moves out of the section without even a hiccup if the throttles are set correctly. The thing you want to avoid at all costs is having two power packs feeding the same track at the same time. Feeding one track with two power packs will tend to blow out power transistors.
  6. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Try connecting the wires for one rail together on both sides of the block; that should give you a start at the common rail wiring. Then you can continue for the next block that will need it.
    This does give you the chance for a 24V short if one of the packs is set for the wrong direction. Make sure you have circuit breakers.
    I resisited common rail wiring for decades, but it now makes sense to me.

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