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A few weeks ago I got three Lionel TMCC lockons for my layout and I just got around to wiring them in. I run modern locomotives with a postwar 275 watt ZW and a KW transformer. So I wanted the lockons to protect the new trains. So now the new trains are safe, but my MPC Lionel 3100 trips the breaker after it runs for a little bit, I ran my Marx commodore Vanderbilt and had no problems, and my dc motor locomotives run flawlessly, so I’m thinking it’s just the Big AC locomotives, I haven’t ran my postwar 671 or 224 but I think they will trip the breaker, I also can’t run the conventional engines slowly because the track power turns on at a higher voltage. I drew a diagram for a switch that when thrown, overrides the TMCC lockon, the relay in the diagram is for when “AC motor mode” is turned on, it’s cuts power going back to the lockon to not fry it. I’m only 16 so it’s not perfect. I just want to know if it’s practical cause my dad says it’s to confusing, Thanks.

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The TMCC Direct Lockon has a problem with anything that generates electrical noise on the tracks, so many Pulmore motored locomotives will have an issue.  FWIW, when I had these years ago, even a number of can motored locomotives would trip the lockon when I went past the track connection.  Finally, add to that that the TMCC Direct Lockon kills the DCS signal, and that was the last straw.  They were banished from my RR.

A few weeks ago I got three Lionel TMCC lockons for my layout and I just got around to wiring them in. I run modern locomotives with a postwar 275 watt ZW and a KW transformer. So I wanted the lockons to protect the new trains. So now the new trains are safe, but my MPC Lionel 3100 trips the breaker after it runs for a little bit, I ran my Marx commodore Vanderbilt and had no problems, and my dc motor locomotives run flawlessly, so I’m thinking it’s just the Big AC locomotives, I haven’t ran my postwar 671 or 224 but I think they will trip the breaker, I also can’t run the conventional engines slowly because the track power turns on at a higher voltage. I drew a diagram for a switch that when thrown, overrides the TMCC lockon, the relay in the diagram is for when “AC motor mode” is turned on, it’s cuts power going back to the lockon to not fry it. I’m only 16 so it’s not perfect. I just want to know if it’s practical cause my dad says it’s to confusing, Thanks.

Matt, if you decide you don't want to use MTH's DCS and do still want to use TMCC Lockons to protect your newer trains' electronics, your idea would work to either run the power directly from the Transformer to the track or switch the Lockon in line.  The relays I'm familiar with, have an actuating (coil) voltage of either (5V or 12V)DC or (24, 120 or 240V) AC.  So, if you were to use a relay, it would likely need its own power source for activation.

Rather than using a relay to switch between either transformer direct to the track or thru the Lockon, a 10A (or greater) SPDT switch may be easier and more cost effective than a 10A relay.  There are a couple of switch options that would work for you:  One would be a 12V 10A automotive type switch.  Another would be a common "3-Way" light switch (like for house wiring).  Another advantage to using switches is the wiring would be a little simpler than using relays.

If you decide to go this route, let me know if you need a wiring diagram for the connections.

Last edited by SteveH

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