Hi, what is the simplest way to connect multiple operating accessories in parallel to power from one CW-80?  I will not be soldering anything.  Crimping and/or tightening screws attached to terminal blocks is what I'm going for.  I'm an amateur at electronics, some pictures of actual products would be very helpful.  This is for a Christmas layout and I'd like to be modular so I can disconnect the items and reconnect next year.  

Thanks

Garrett

 

George Bailey: You know what the three most exciting sounds in the world are? Anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles!

It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

 

Check out my Lionel and MTH auto trains

http://gwpreisch.wordpress.com/

Original Post

thanks. 

questions-

is this a common item?

Anyone know if it's carried at Lowe's?

If not, what brick and mortar location can I get one?

is it bare wire ends or do I need to purchase some sort of end connector?

what holds it in place, screw pressure?

Thanks

George Bailey: You know what the three most exciting sounds in the world are? Anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles!

It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

 

Check out my Lionel and MTH auto trains

http://gwpreisch.wordpress.com/

Garrett, that barrier strip is a fairly common item that should be available at Lowes, HD, ACE, Menard's, Radioshack if you're lucky enough to still have one nearby or any quality hardware store.  They come in various lengths so depending on the number of accessories you may want a longer or shorter strip.  Look closely at Chuck's picture and you'll see the copper "jumper"wires  connecting the cells of the strip so that one power wire from transformer feeds up to six accessories.  You'll also see the screw in each cell that tightens down on the stripped end of the wires, no special connector necessary.

so, do all the red wires go on one side (top) and all black wires go on other side (bottom)?  or is it power wires on the outside (left and right) and operating accessory wires go the middle?  a sketch on paper would be helpful.

thanks!

George Bailey: You know what the three most exciting sounds in the world are? Anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles!

It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

 

Check out my Lionel and MTH auto trains

http://gwpreisch.wordpress.com/

Garrett76 posted:

so, do all the red wires go on one side (top) and all black wires go on other side (bottom)?  or is it power wires on the outside (left and right) and operating accessory wires go the middle?  a sketch on paper would be helpful.

thanks!

It's left and right. Each vertical pair of screw downs are electrically isolated from each other. I connect half of them of them together and call that red, then the other half connected and they are black. In Lionel terms that is A and U. Instead of using wire jumpers which I make out of #20 ga wire cut in about one inch length and bending around a needle nose plier in the shape of a U, you can buy jumpers. They come in say 8 or 12 long and I cut off what I need like say 4 in a row to connect 4 connections together.

Here's a link to some jumpers...you have to pay attention to the spacing and order what fits your euro type terminal strips. There are also jumpers for the barrier strips (the larger black strips which take the spade connectors). I use both for different reasons.

 http://www.digikey.com/product...id=0&pageSize=25

Chuck TCA LCCA ARRL BMWMOA

I am learning from everyone but still not all the way there, yet.  I am a visual learner and would really appreciate a hand drawn sketch with arrows showing the flow direction of electricity at each connection point.  please clearly label polarity and other relevant points

Thanks!

George Bailey: You know what the three most exciting sounds in the world are? Anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles!

It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

 

Check out my Lionel and MTH auto trains

http://gwpreisch.wordpress.com/

Garrett76 posted:

I am learning from everyone but still not all the way there, yet.  I am a visual learner and would really appreciate a hand drawn sketch with arrows showing the flow direction of electricity at each connection point.  please clearly label polarity and other relevant points

Thanks!

Are you also asking about accessory activation wires? Those vary by each type of accessory. Are these all buildings? Otherwise, could you list the accessories you are trying to hook up?

Also, you asked about modular connections.  There are great ways to use labeled Molex connectors so that you can unplug a module just like you would with a power cord to a wall outlet.

ADCX Rob posted:

excellent, exactly what I was looking for.  One question- as the wire leaves the transformer and becomes many before connecting to the jumper, how do I simply get multiple wires from one?  something happens at that intersection which is not clear to me

thanks!

George Bailey: You know what the three most exciting sounds in the world are? Anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles!

It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

 

Check out my Lionel and MTH auto trains

http://gwpreisch.wordpress.com/

Garrett, if you look at ACDX Rob's excellent diagram you will notice that he says to use a jumper strip on one side of the barrier. A jumper strip is a thin metal strip that looks sort of like a comb. Think of the prongs of the comb and imagine two going under each screw on one side of the barrier strip. Now all of the screws on that side of the barrier strip are electrically connected.  So, if you attach your red (hot) wire to any of the screws on the side with the jumper strip all of the screws receive current.         

          0    0    0    0    0    0          <---- terminal block barrier screws (to accessories)

          0    0    0    0    0    0          <---- terminal block barrier screws (power side)

          I___I___I___I___I ___I___I          <---- jumper strip (like a metal comb)

 

After adding the jumper strip....

 

          0     0    0     0    0    0          <----- terminal block barrier screws (wire one per accessory)

          I_0_I_0_I_0_I_0_I_0_I_0_I        <----- term. block barrier screws with jumper installed so

          all are connected. Attach hot (red) lead from + (A) post of transformer to any screw on this side of barrier strip and jumper provides power to all screws on this side.

Each wire to an accessory will go from a screw on the terminal block (top row of screws in the diagram)  to the switch for the accessory, then on to the + pole on the accessory. You wire the same for the (-) (black) wire on a second terminal block strip, but there is no need to connect to the switch for the accessory.

You can get jumper strips from allelectronics.com. They sell the terminal blocks and jumper strips that go with them. No doubt there are other sources. My local Radio Shack was out of stock.

Good luck with your project.

 

 

 

         

IMG_1266

Garret, I've borrowed Chucks picture, If you look closely the red wire entering the strip on the left hand top side is hot power from the transformer into the strip, it is connected to the next five cells on the top side of the strip by 5 short, un-insulated copper jumper wires connecting each terminal to the next terminal to the right thus powering six terminals. On the bottom side you can see three red (Hot) wires coming out of three individual terminals, these are the hot wires to the accessories. Moving to the right, half way across is a black wire entering the strip this is the ground from the transformer.  Continuing to the right you will five more jumper wires and again three black wire leaving the bottom this in the ground to the accessories.  Chuck did it this way to use one 12 terminal barrier strip to provide both hot and ground with one strip. ADCX Rob showed two separate six terminal barrier strips to do the same thing.  The key is the little jumper wires from one terminal to the next on the same side of the strip.

There was a recent post that suggested using grounding strips/grounding bars to avoid the need for jumpers.  These seemed to be a cost efficient approach at $5.58 for 9 terminal (you can have more than 1 wire in each terminal hole). 

http://m.homedepot.com/p/Squar...t-PK9GTACP/100161420

Good luck and please update us when you get a chance.

Thanks,

JD

 

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JD2035RR posted:

There was a recent post that suggested using grounding strips/grounding bars to avoid the need for jumpers.  These seemed to be a cost efficient approach at $5.58 for 9 terminal (you can have more than 1 wire in each terminal hole). 

http://m.homedepot.com/p/Squar...t-PK9GTACP/100161420

Good luck and please update us when you get a chance.

Thanks,

JD

 

Grounding strips are made for 14 to 12 gauge electrical wire used in 15 to 20 Amp circuits in electrical boxes. The gauge of wire for most accessories is much smaller, since they draw very small amps. I use grounding strips for track power, but you need to be careful with accessory wire connections. It is possible to reduce the effective gauge of the wire at the connection if only a small portion of the wire surface is making contact with the connector. It can also be difficult making the connections with small wires in a grounding strip.

Also, "double tapping" a terminal hole in a grounding strip or terminal strip would be against electrical code (if it applied) and is considered an unreliable means of connection. There are connectors that are made to allow two connections, but the ones shown here are not.

George

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