If you can find time, please watch about the first 60 seconds of this video
- It shows the "Chuggington Central" 5'x 8' temporary O gauge public display railroad in operation -- at the recently-held 2-day-long "Toy Train Expo" in Williamsport PA.
It operated 3 trains (one at a time): 2 Williams Chuggington locomotives, and 1 MTH SW1500.
- This display consisted of a pair of 2nd hand, "high mileage" MTH turnouts, in a room full of rambunctious kids -- with lots of exposed wires, trains running close to the edge of the table, and no barrier between the kids and the trains.
As they say, "What could possibly go wrong?".
- We had a PUSHBUTTON that started the trains. We let the kids use the pushbutton to start the trains whenever possible. The kids seemed to "get a kick" out of starting the trains with the pushbutton -- even though it wasn't that big of a deal.
- When a kid pushed the button, the "status light" changed from green to red (indicating "busy"). Then each of the 2 Chuggingtons made 2 laps, and then the MTH diesel on the center track made 1 point-to-point cycle. Finally, the "status light" changed from red back to green -- to indicate that they could push the button again.
The NCE DCC programmable train controller operated 4 relays. These 4 relays controlled the 2 Chuggingtons, the diverging turnout, and the "status light". It sent DCC commands directly to the MTH Proto-3 diesel (which was operating on DCC).
We were lucky, and made it through the whole weekend, with only a single minor derailment -- when one of the kids got too close to the outside siding and accidentally bumped a car off the track.