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TMCC Base 1L/Cab 1L

I have built a rather large, but not complex around-the wall layout with center peninsula. The track measures about 225 feet- including sidings and station tracks. It is a scenic mainline running operation. There are four power districts. I've run 12 gauge common bus wire with alternating drop wires of 16 gauge from the track to the bus,  about every 6 feet. The connections are all soldered. The common bus is daisy-chain connected to the  four U posts on the back of the ZWL transformer. Two of the four individual power district bus lines with drop wires are connected to the A and D posts on the ZWL. (I still have the two remaining power districts to connect to the B and C posts.) Today I attached the Cab1L base via the enclosed green wire to the binding post on the ZWL. Fresh batteries are in the controller. I programmed (I think so anyway) two Legacy locomotives, being sure to have the Program switches turned on, on both the transformer and the locomotives. I got only a slight burst of light from the locos- no bell. I then switched the Program switches on the locos and the ZWL to Run. Prior to that I had selected to run the entire layout off of the AU throttle, with the A and D throttles set to about 16 volts. When I addressed a single loco with its ENG ID#, there was a brief flash of light in the cab, and then nothing. I tried the same procedure with the other loco.  Again, nothing.   I began to think that I had wired the layout all wrong, despite all the good advice I had gotten. SO- I decided to disconnect the TMCC system, and flip the switch on the back of the ZWL to Conventional. I pulled the AU throttle and the train jumped to life. Same with the other locomotive. Railsounds were loud and clear. The trains travelled smoothly through the two power districts that I have finished wiring.   So, after this long description, I am wondering if anyone can tell me what I might be missing. I am a total newbie to Lionel command control, having come from an HO DCC  club layout. The only thing that comes to my mind is that perhaps the TMCC Base1L/Remote 1L  is not enough power for the size of this layout.  Would the Legacy CAB2 be a better option?  I preferred to have a less complex command control system, with fewer options- so that is why I chose the TMCC. I hope someone can shed a little light on my situation.

Thank you in advance.

DenverAnnie

Original Post
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