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What specs should I look for when choosing a toggle switch?

Is there anything I should be aware of when wiring a siding for power?

These traditional looking switches and these round switches look interesting   Thoughts on them?

To block/wire a siding I was going to tap the toggle switch into the hot bus wire and run it to the center rail on the siding.  If these switches are rated for 20amps, they should be OK having 10amps pass thru them when a siding is powered.  Been so long since I’ve done this, want to make sure I’m not overlooking anything  

Does anyone have any preferences on bus bars?

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On a slightly related note, if you use toggle switches to turn power on/off to selected pieces of your layout, there is a slight problem if you also use the MTH DCS control system.  Specifically, any track section not turned ON by toggle before you power up the whole layout misses something from DCS called the "watch dog" signal.  As a result, when you do switch that toggle to ON, any engine sitting on that piece of track will act like a conventional (not command control) engine and take off with a full 18 volts of energy!

There is an electrical fix for this; some gizmo created by Gunrunner John prevents the runaway.  Search the forum for watch dog signal and you should be able to find info about this gizmo/product.

Chuck

@Ron045 posted:

The most reliable and easy to install track toggle switches I have are regular light switches.  The cheap ones for a buck.  The down side is they take a lot of space.

I have lighted rocker switches too.  They look good but take time to solder wire and the hole in the fascia better be near perfect.

Have fun.

Ron

Yep. My first layout about 10 years ago was a Christmas layout that is what I used. I got a 4 place gang box and 4 3 position switches. I drilled the box and mounted RCA type jacks on the front (power only) to control what was on or off. I had 2 transformers so I could tell which transformer controlled what section of track. I still have it, it is bulky and I doubt I will go that way again. It did work well, though.

Frank

@PRR1950 posted:

On a slightly related note, if you use toggle switches to turn power on/off to selected pieces of your layout, there is a slight problem if you also use the MTH DCS control system.  Specifically, any track section not turned ON by toggle before you power up the whole layout misses something from DCS called the "watch dog" signal.  As a result, when you do switch that toggle to ON, any engine sitting on that piece of track will act like a conventional (not command control) engine and take off with a full 18 volts of energy!

There is an electrical fix for this; some gizmo created by Gunrunner John prevents the runaway.  Search the forum for watch dog signal and you should be able to find info about this gizmo/product.

Chuck

Not entirely accurate 100% of the time.  I will not deny that this can happen.  I have one MTH PS3 engine that has been known to turn on and take off like a rocket, but not every time.  I know to be careful with that particular engine.

All of my other engines do turn on, but they remain in neutral and do not take off.

But if there is a GRJ fix, then all the better for safe and reliable operations.

Ron

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After trying all sorts of Bus Bars (low and medium cost) these are the most efficient.  Best prices for these can be found at All Electronics when available (I don't see any now.).

wmtermstrps

Barrier Terminal Blocks above can be purchased with 2 to 16 positions.   Use blocks with screws that hold down a binding head.
See on this page Toy Train Layout Wiring - Wire Management

Bus11

These Terminal Strips are on one of my Control Carts shown here:   Toy Train Layout Wiring - Bus Wiring

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  • wmtermstrps
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I use these small toggles for track power. They come with the leads attached which makes wiring easier. The small size takes up little room on a control panel.

Several different types of buss bars as well. For track power I'm using bare grounding bars (available at HD/ Lowes). They are made for electrical panels. Just mount them with an insulator between the plywood and the bar.

15 Terminal Ground Bar Kit
Switches and accessories go through barrier strips and euro-style terminal strips. Jumper bars can be added to the barrier strips to make the whole bar powered by the same source (good for track buss).

EATON's Bussmann Series TB100-10 Double Row Terminal Block | Waytek

38002-1290

Terminal Strips | Wieland Electric Inc.

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@PRR1950 posted:

On a slightly related note, if you use toggle switches to turn power on/off to selected pieces of your layout, there is a slight problem if you also use the MTH DCS control system.  Specifically, any track section not turned ON by toggle before you power up the whole layout misses something from DCS called the "watch dog" signal.  As a result, when you do switch that toggle to ON, any engine sitting on that piece of track will act like a conventional (not command control) engine and take off with a full 18 volts of energy!

There is an electrical fix for this; some gizmo created by Gunrunner John prevents the runaway.  Search the forum for watch dog signal and you should be able to find info about this gizmo/product.

Chuck

Here's one of John's threads on WD's

https://ogrforum.ogaugerr.com/...chdog-in-yard-tracks

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