I have recently isolated a section of track by my train station.   It is about a 8 foot section.  Dummy pins on each end.  one drop down wire running to isolation switch.  The engine is fickle when operating on that section.  start up engine on powered track...it will run 2-3 feet then stop as if power was disconnected.....try to start up and it says engine not on track.   add passenger car to track engine will start up right where it sits.....ran it back and and forth 4-5 feet each way several times....no problem  take off lighted passenger.....stops again.

So as long as a lighted passenger car is on the section...no problem....if not all kind of problems

thoughts?  thanks in advance.

PS - I am in a DCS environment.

 

 

 

Original Post

Regarding the isolated section - how many pieces of track?  What kind of track? How are your wires joined to the track? Are the outside rails joined by wires or only by metal crossties?   Are three rails isolated or only the center?   John in Lansing, ILL

4 pieces - gargrave -

as for how....not sure what they are called but  stuck in the bottom of the track a flat connector...sorry really don't know what it is called

but prior to adding the isolation switch....it was wired to the track as is now....

and I do have other isolated sections that are working fine with same set up.

 

 

You shouldn't be relying on the track pins to transmit power from the single feeder. Short of adding another feeder or two, take a pair of pliers and squeeze the ends of each section around the pins. That might help.

msp posted:

4 pieces - gargrave -

as for how....not sure what they are called but  stuck in the bottom of the track a flat connector...sorry really don't know what it is called    Could be spade connectors.

but prior to adding the isolation switch....it was wired to the track as is now....  Before isolating that section those pieces of track were getting electricity from the drop as well as from the tracks at each end.  Now, only from the drop.

and I do have other isolated sections that are working fine with same set up.  Good point, those track connections may be tighter than the connections in this section.   John in Lansing, ILL

 

 

 

David Minarik posted:

Your engine has poor ground with the isolated rail.  Premier steam is the worst followed by premier diesels with 2/3 trucks.  There are steps to take that will increase the ground.

Great observation Dave, far more likely than loss of center rail power

I am not sure I know what this means...

BobbyD posted:
David Minarik posted:

Your engine has poor ground with the isolated rail.  Premier steam is the worst followed by premier diesels with 2/3 trucks.  There are steps to take that will increase the ground.

Great observation Dave, far more likely than loss of center rail power

I have tightened the connections....let me reiterate the problem.   

engine no power "not on track"   as soon as I add a lighted passenger car to the track the engine starts right where it sits....as soon as I remove the passenger car from the track the engine shuts down.

tried same procedure with different engine.....same results...doesnt matter where in the 8 foot isolated section of track sits the engine....take the passenger car off ...engine shuts down...put it on engine starts up.

Let's trouble shoot the problem.  As this happens with all engines, the problem is probably in the conductivity of the track.  Can you put a freight car with metal wheels and axles on the track in lieu of the passenger car?  Result?   If you have a wire with alligator clips on each end, use the wire to bridge between the two outer rails.  Result?  Feed an outside rail from outside the insulated block. Result?  Obviously there is a break in the circuit somewhere.  John in Lansing, ILL

Here's my guess:

I think RATTLER21 has hit upon the cause of your problem.  The engine's connection to your outside rail is not good.  I'm guessing your engines have traction tires on the same side as the rail that's connected to power.  When you add the passenger car, its metal wheels bridge the power to the other outside rail.  That allows the engines wheels without the traction tires to get the power they need.

Or it could be that the lights in the passenger car are serving as the "magic lights" that DCS seems to need to work in some environments.  One way to test is to put the engine in the section of track, observe it not working, then connect the 2 outside rails with a length of wire with alligator clips on each end as suggested above.  If the engine runs, then it is an outside rail pickup problem.  If the engine still doesn't run, it is the "magic lights" in the passenger car making it run.

msp posted:

I am not sure I know what this means...

BobbyD posted:
David Minarik posted:

Your engine has poor ground with the isolated rail.  Premier steam is the worst followed by premier diesels with 2/3 trucks.  There are steps to take that will increase the ground.

Great observation Dave, far more likely than loss of center rail power

I have tightened the connections....let me reiterate the problem.   

engine no power "not on track"   as soon as I add a lighted passenger car to the track the engine starts right where it sits....as soon as I remove the passenger car from the track the engine shuts down.

tried same procedure with different engine.....same results...doesnt matter where in the 8 foot isolated section of track sits the engine....take the passenger car off ...engine shuts down...put it on engine starts up.

It is because you have only one common rail and the engine alone is not able to complete the electrical circuit. By placing the passenger car on the track you are using it to complete the circuit. Same as if you had both outer rails connected together.

Eliminated all our insulated rails, all detection is now done with sensors, because many MTH engines were stopping on them.

Okay - freight cars works as well so..........survey says ....

Don’t run the engine by itself - as long as I am running trains through that section I should be fine

Low tech solution to electrical issue 😜

I can clean wheels as I have time 

 

Add Reply

Likes (0)
Post
The DCS Forum is sponsored by
OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
330-757-3020

www.ogaugerr.com
×
×
×
×
×