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Re: [NWNG-Sn3Group] Re: Installing DCC and Sound

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  • vpellitteri1@optonline.net
    I am not trying to be modest, but you would not learn anything from me. I simply do it by the book. Like Paul, all my engines are basically the same,
    Message 1 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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      I am not trying to be modest, but you would not learn anything from me. I simply do it by the book. Like Paul, all my engines are basically the same, PBL Shays. So once you have done one, you know exactly how to do the others. That is probably what saves me time.I would be very interested in how you make out with Tom's Heisler and where you got the gear from.Vinny


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • onagerla
      Sure Paul and I hope I didn t alarm anyone. I guess I wouldn t want to discourage anyone from doing their own work. I m not hurting for this kind of business
      Message 2 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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        Sure Paul and I hope I didn't alarm anyone. I guess I wouldn't want to discourage anyone from doing their own work. I'm not hurting for this kind of business so my parade is still dry. I really am still astonished but in talking it out perhaps I shouldn't be. Hopefully J and others will look at everything we've said and launch into an installing career with several good opinions to encourage them. May I ask if you remember how long your first install took you?

        Derrell

        --- In NWNG-Sn3Group@yahoogroups.com, Paul Scoles <pbscoles@...> wrote:
        >
        > Derrell,
        >  
        >   Well, first of all, I never set out to rain on anyone's parade.  I simply wanted to encourage JEM to jump in and give DCC a try.  Installing a decoder, which is what he inquired about, really is quite easy, in and of itself.
        >  
        >   I did tell him to read Bill Adkins' tutorial about motors and PFM locos, since Bill has done considerable work in that area and is an expert.
        >  
        >   You're right about my locos.  Of 17 on my roster, 11 are Railmaster, 1 is a BLW Mason Bogie with a Faulhaber motor, 3 are PFM with Sagami motors and new gearboxes, and 2 are Overland with Sagami motors and new gearboxes.  So, yes, I had previously done a considerable amount of work to upgrade my locos prior to switching to DCC.
        >  
        >   If one takes the above into account, then yes, more than an hour is needed per loco, but that's not what JEM asked about.  The main thing is, let's get him into the game by pointing out how easy it CAN BE, once any needed prep work is done.
        >  
        >   Thanks, by the way, for your compliments...
        >  
        >   Paul
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
      • onagerla
        Vinny, I think I would learn some things - but let s not argue about that. The gear is a stock Mod .4 gear from NWSL part number 2302-6. Now, I haven t
        Message 3 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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          Vinny,

          I think I would learn some things - but let's not argue about that.

          The gear is a stock Mod .4 gear from NWSL part number 2302-6. Now, I haven't actually put it in the gearbox yet so I can't say it is 100% but will let you know when I get a chance (am busier than a cat covering it up trying to meet deadlines and preparing to move - yikes!)

          Derrell

          --- In NWNG-Sn3Group@yahoogroups.com, vpellitteri1@... wrote:
          >
          > I am not trying to be modest, but you would not learn anything from me. I simply do it by the book. Like Paul, all my engines are basically the same, PBL Shays. So once you have done one, you know exactly how to do the others. That is probably what saves me time.I would be very interested in how you make out with Tom's Heisler and where you got the gear from.Vinny
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
        • Paul Scoles
          Derrell, ... Sure... it was years ago with my old Keller analog set-up, but it took 2-3 hours or so I think. We re talking the very early 80 s, so my memory
          Message 4 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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            Derrell,

            --- On Mon, 7/12/10, onagerla <onagerla@...> wrote: 

            > May I ask if you remember how long your first install took you?

            Sure... it was years ago with my old Keller analog set-up, but it took 2-3 hours or so I think. We're talking the very early 80's, so my memory is a bit fuzzy.

            When I switched to DCC 7 years ago my locos were all set up to go, so it was really just a matter of removing the Keller units and installing DCC decoders. Then, when Soundtraxx released their Tsunami decoders I replaced the silent decoders with sound. That went even faster...

            Early on I settled on a consistant wiring scheme, so in reality I could swap tenders, plug the units together, and it would all work. Same colors to the same connections in every loco.

            Lately I've built 3 new RME loco kits, and the installation in each took roughly an hour. Programming... well, that's a different story. :-)

            I've never, by the way, experienced a can motor with voltage leak.

            Paul
          • onagerla
            And hopefully you never do. Truly. As I said, the first time it happened to me (in the second loco I ever installed in) I was completely taken by surprise. I
            Message 5 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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              And hopefully you never do. Truly. As I said, the first time it happened to me (in the second loco I ever installed in) I was completely taken by surprise. I did a continuity test from each terminal and the drive shaft to the frame of the can and got no reading. It seemed perfectly fine so I assumed my can motor was safe just like in the first engine with exactly the same motor. That engine had been (and still is) in operation for some time with no issues. That's right; to this day it still isn't isolated. The case in point engine ran fine for about a week but it started acting funny. Sometimes it would run ok but increasingly it stalled and even came up with mysterious shorts that I could not locate. Finally it stalled altogether, the headlamp flashed 6 or so times and then it was dead. Not knowing enough to dig my way out of that one I packed it up and ran to Caboose to talk with Dave Klineman. The first thing he did was put a voltmeter on the motor between the terminals and the frame while it was running and there was a 2-volt drop. Continuity from the terminals to the frame was still infinity! I was flabbergasted. He just smiled and told me he hadn't known about this until recently (at that time) himself "- which is another reason why I don't take brass installs any more" (Dave) - so the best thing to do is just go ahead and isolate every motor.

              From what I understand if there is a bare spot on one of the windings of the armature that can contact a similar spot on the field windings or comes in contact with the motor frame you won't see continuity until those points are lined up. I can't tell you how or why this happens but it does. Naturally this does nothing of note to a DC system but I've talked with Soundtraxx and they assure me that it is best not to let any track voltage which as I'm sure you know is a signaled wave potential come into contact with the pure DC circuit of the motor controller. My understanding of what they have told me is that it's that alternating current that is dangerous.

              Soundtraxx has always been good about repairing my decoders when something goes wrong even at my boneheaded boo-boos. But. They send you pages of finger wagging advice when you've been neglectful. Doesn't bode well with the image of a pro installer - at least in my head.

              As to programming it's interesting what you say about it being a different story. Yes the programming can get crosswise and nothing seems to work (and how this happens – who knows?). You even start thinking the decoder is busted. Even if you do a factory reset sometimes nothing seems to work. Well a factory reset doesn't reset every CV (primarily 29 and a few other essentials). I have had to go in and manually reset function CVs to default many times. Also one of my basic rules is that if I cannot read CV 1 on the program track and especially if I get any errors I do NOT chance it on the full mainline system. Maybe you don't have any of these problems.

              I'm sure you are already aware of this but others may not be; computer programs like DecoderPro will save a CV profile as a file that you can import into a new decoder. Once you have a profile you like it saves tons of time and headaches to simply import that profile and change the address to your specific engine. Unless its motor characteristics are really very different you shouldn't have to do much else. But I like playing with CVs.

              Hoping for your continued success.

              Derrell







              --- In NWNG-Sn3Group@yahoogroups.com, Paul Scoles <pbscoles@...> wrote:
              >
              > Derrell,
              >
              > --- On Mon, 7/12/10, onagerla <onagerla@...> wrote: 
              >
              > > May I ask if you remember how long your first install took you?
              >
              > Sure... it was years ago with my old Keller analog set-up, but it took 2-3 hours or so I think. We're talking the very early 80's, so my memory is a bit fuzzy.
              >
              > When I switched to DCC 7 years ago my locos were all set up to go, so it was really just a matter of removing the Keller units and installing DCC decoders. Then, when Soundtraxx released their Tsunami decoders I replaced the silent decoders with sound. That went even faster...
              >
              > Early on I settled on a consistant wiring scheme, so in reality I could swap tenders, plug the units together, and it would all work. Same colors to the same connections in every loco.
              >
              > Lately I've built 3 new RME loco kits, and the installation in each took roughly an hour. Programming... well, that's a different story. :-)
              >
              > I've never, by the way, experienced a can motor with voltage leak.
              >
              > Paul
              >
            • Paul Scoles
              Derrell, Comments... ... For me, the primary reason programming can take some time is in setting up the Tsunami Dynamic Digital Effects section, CV s 179-188
              Message 6 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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                Derrell,

                Comments...

                > As to programming it's interesting what you say about it being a
                > different story. I'm sure you are already aware of this but others ma
                > not be; computer programs like DecoderPro will save a CV profile as a
                > file that you can import into a new decoder.

                For me, the primary reason programming can take some time is in setting up the Tsunami Dynamic Digital Effects section, CV's 179-188 (I think).

                Matching speed tables, etc, can also take time, but the DDE stuff can really consume time, since nearly every loco has differences in running ballistics, and so forth. I've done considerable experimenting with those CV's in order to get all locos of a certain class (ie- 2-8-0's) to run together for double heading, and to have the same cut off and chuff/drift characteristics, plus brake squeal and other niceties.

                Thus, due to inherent differences in locos a computer program that remembers CV settings would be of little help with DDE CV's. So, like most things I do, the old fashion way works best. My grandson (age 17) thinks I'm old fashioned, and I tell him "darn right I am!"

                Then, recently I bought a new car, a sports car with an "old fashion" 5 speed manual transmission that goes zero to 60 in about 2 seconds. Well, that manual shift set up was suddenly really cool for him, once I taught him how to handle it. Now, most evenings he shows up wanting to borrow my little red hot rod. Old fashioned... yep, and really fun too. Overnight I became pretty cool to the kid. I used to be, when I coached his youth baseball team during his 13-15 y.o. years. Now I am again...

                Paul (Still old fashioned, but having fun and staying one step ahead of the pack)
              • William Uffelman
                2004 Z4 3.0 convertible w/6 speed probably would really impress your son! 8 )) It is a great vehicle for touring SP NG land. Bioll Uffelman Las Vegas NV
                Message 7 of 21 , Jul 12, 2010
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                  2004 Z4 3.0 convertible w/6 speed probably would really impress your son! 8>))

                  It is a great vehicle for touring SP NG land.

                  Bioll Uffelman
                  Las Vegas NV




                  ________________________________
                  From: Paul Scoles <pbscoles@...>
                  To: NWNG-Sn3Group@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Mon, July 12, 2010 8:05:45 PM
                  Subject: Re: [NWNG-Sn3Group] Re: Installing DCC and Sound

                   
                  Derrell,

                  Comments...

                  > As to programming it's interesting what you say about it being a
                  > different story. I'm sure you are already aware of this but others ma
                  > not be; computer programs like DecoderPro will save a CV profile as a
                  > file that you can import into a new decoder.

                  For me, the primary reason programming can take some time is in setting up the
                  Tsunami Dynamic Digital Effects section, CV's 179-188 (I think).

                  Matching speed tables, etc, can also take time, but the DDE stuff can really
                  consume time, since nearly every loco has differences in running ballistics, and
                  so forth. I've done considerable experimenting with those CV's in order to get
                  all locos of a certain class (ie- 2-8-0's) to run together for double heading,
                  and to have the same cut off and chuff/drift characteristics, plus brake squeal
                  and other niceties.

                  Thus, due to inherent differences in locos a computer program that remembers CV
                  settings would be of little help with DDE CV's. So, like most things I do, the
                  old fashion way works best. My grandson (age 17) thinks I'm old fashioned, and I
                  tell him "darn right I am!"


                  Then, recently I bought a new car, a sports car with an "old fashion" 5 speed
                  manual transmission that goes zero to 60 in about 2 seconds. Well, that manual
                  shift set up was suddenly really cool for him, once I taught him how to handle
                  it. Now, most evenings he shows up wanting to borrow my little red hot rod. Old
                  fashioned... yep, and really fun too. Overnight I became pretty cool to the kid.
                  I used to be, when I coached his youth baseball team during his 13-15 y.o.
                  years. Now I am again...

                  Paul (Still old fashioned, but having fun and staying one step ahead of the
                  pack)







                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • onagerla
                  Paul, CV 188, speed tables, mu - even sound volumes, equalizer and reverb; I kinda figured that was coming. I think we both probably regard the setting up of a
                  Message 8 of 21 , Jul 13, 2010
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                    Paul,

                    CV 188, speed tables, mu - even sound volumes, equalizer and reverb; I kinda figured that was coming. I think we both probably regard the setting up of a decoder as something beyond installation. A lot of it is a matter of taste so commercially I don't do much with it. I will if the client asks. And you are right that most of it is trial and error.

                    Back emf is something that I have been trying to address more efficiently for quite some time too. If everything is set up correctly the steam engine will really sound like it's working, cruising or drifting depending on the load on the motor. But hitting that sweet-spot is time consuming when you must do it by trial and error - I'll bet you are good at it tho and you have plenty of layout with which to go thru the process.

                    There is another way (which I am still trying to master). I have 3 oscilloscopes plus a virtual oscilloscope on a laptop. "Theoretically" a scope can read the peak efficiency of a motor and that's the point at which you want to set CV188. Once you have that the rest is sorta like gravey. All you need is one scope that you know how to set up.... I've been trying to talk with the engineers at Soundtraxx about this for a year. Grrrrr.

                    Anyway I do actually enjoy playing with that aspect of a decoder. I remember there was a certain apprehensive buzz about the Tsunamis before they were released because of all those CVs you had to deal with. To me it's the difference between chess and checkers. All those CVs simply add to the fun of what if. But then I get excited when there is a kink in my track so I can fix it...

                    My 20-year-old daughter has accused me of being the antecedent of cool. She hates my jeep, she hates my trains and she once suggested she should probably go burn down Caboose Hobbies - now she works there!

                    Derrell

                    --- In NWNG-Sn3Group@yahoogroups.com, Paul Scoles <pbscoles@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Derrell,
                    >
                    > Comments...
                    >
                    > > As to programming it's interesting what you say about it being a
                    > > different story. I'm sure you are already aware of this but others ma
                    > > not be; computer programs like DecoderPro will save a CV profile as a
                    > > file that you can import into a new decoder.
                    >
                    > For me, the primary reason programming can take some time is in setting up the Tsunami Dynamic Digital Effects section, CV's 179-188 (I think).
                    >
                    > Matching speed tables, etc, can also take time, but the DDE stuff can really consume time, since nearly every loco has differences in running ballistics, and so forth. I've done considerable experimenting with those CV's in order to get all locos of a certain class (ie- 2-8-0's) to run together for double heading, and to have the same cut off and chuff/drift characteristics, plus brake squeal and other niceties.
                    >
                    > Thus, due to inherent differences in locos a computer program that remembers CV settings would be of little help with DDE CV's. So, like most things I do, the old fashion way works best. My grandson (age 17) thinks I'm old fashioned, and I tell him "darn right I am!"
                    >
                    > Then, recently I bought a new car, a sports car with an "old fashion" 5 speed manual transmission that goes zero to 60 in about 2 seconds. Well, that manual shift set up was suddenly really cool for him, once I taught him how to handle it. Now, most evenings he shows up wanting to borrow my little red hot rod. Old fashioned... yep, and really fun too. Overnight I became pretty cool to the kid. I used to be, when I coached his youth baseball team during his 13-15 y.o. years. Now I am again...
                    >
                    > Paul (Still old fashioned, but having fun and staying one step ahead of the pack)
                    >
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