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I have a stand alone siding. On each end, I have a half straight track with an insulator pin in the center rail, and a lighted bumper (always on) powered by a direct center rail feed to each half track.

In the center of the siding, I have a Lionel Fish car, with a switched power feed, and a ground.

The Fish car is noisy, so I decided to use a rectifier to see how DC would affect the situation. I wired the switched power feed and the ground through the rectifier, not touching the lighted bumper connections. That means the bumpers have an AC power line, and a DC ground.

Here's what happens: When the Fish car is switched off, the bumpers are illuminated, but when I switch on the Fish car, it works fine, but the bumper lights go off.

Any suggestions?

Thanks as always.

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I don't know if tying the AC and DC grounds together on this siding could contaminate (might not be the correct term) the ground on my entire layout, since the ground emanates from one of my phased transformers that control everything.

I agree that the DC ground is a suspect.

A sensible approach might simply be to use insulator pins in all 3 rails of the half tracks, and run new clean AC grounds to each end.

@cpasam posted:

On second thought, the ground will be a problem because the car frame grounds to the outside rails.

Not at all.  Disconnect the wires from from the track and connect them to the rectifier AC input.  Connect the wires for the motor and light bulb to the DC output.  Test it before you completely reassemble it to make sure the fish swim in the right direction.  If not, swap the leads.

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