I'm currently running two relatively small loops of 'test' track (working on benchwork, etc. that will accommodate the 'real' layout) - both in conventional mode. One loop is powered using Lionel's GW-180 transformer (180 Watts) and the other is powered using an old-but-reliable Lionel 1033 transformer (90 Watts). The reason I have two separate test tracks is this: I have one locomotive, an MTH BL-2 that is PS1, that will NOT operate under the GW-180 but works fine with the 1033 (I gather this has something to do with the actual shape of the sine wave produced by the transformer).
For at least the first iteration of my 'real' layout, I'm also planning on running two independent loops of track - both considerably larger compared to my test tracks. I want to be able to run the BL-2, and figure I will need more than the 90 watts available from the 1033. I was considering trying to get my hands on a KW transformer. The KW is rated at 190 watts, and is capable of powering two independent trains. My question is this: If I use the KW to run only ONE train (I have the GW-180 for the other loop), are all of the 190 watts available? Or, do you only get 95 watts per track (0.5 x 190 watts), regardless of whether you run one or two trains?
Another question, since I'm at it: I'm planning on running, for each loop of track, a main bus line and multiple power drops spaced at more-or-less regular intervals. Might I just be better off going for ONE of the newer 'big' transformers, and using that to run both loops on the new layout? The loops on the new layout will each be about 69' total length.
Thank you, and good morning,