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44520Re: Locomotive current demands

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  • John L. Battey
    May 13, 2006
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      Sorry if dredging up ancient history offends anyone ...

      --- In z_scale@yahoogroups.com, Dec 31, 1999, 9:52 pm,
      BJKRONEN@... wrote:
      >
      > Jeffrey and Bim:
      >
      > >Jeffrey: I suppose I'm not quite clear on what we're checking here
      though.
      >
      > There are two nightmares you can have with any model train in any scale:
      >
      > 1. Burn out the motor (with too high a voltage, or some types of
      pulse power)
      >
      > 2. Have a dysfunctional mechanism that gives you frustrating
      performance and
      > overloads the motor until it burns out, or tears up the gears.
      >
      > The question at hand addresses the detection of # 2 before it is too
      late.

      A goal to which I aspire most vigorously!


      > > Bim: What do you use to measure current???
      >
      > Most folks know that a volt meter measures electrical pressure
      expressed in
      > volts. In order to make that measurement one puts the meter in
      PARALLEL with
      > the power pack, the rails or the loco.
      >
      > In order to measure current, one has to put a meter in SERIES with
      the power
      > pack. Since the polarity of the power back can be reversed, a "zero
      center"
      > meter is appropriate. That means a meter that at rest, will have
      its pointer
      > in the middle of the scale, and not off to the left side like most
      meters. A
      > meter with 1amp-zero-1amp offers a usable reading, but can survive a
      dead
      > short across the rails. Remember, any current (including a short)
      will pass
      > through the meter on the way to the rails in a series connection.
      >
      > Likewise, a "zero center" voltmeter is quite appropriate too.
      Again, because
      > the power pack can reverse the polarity to the rails.
      >
      > If interest develops, any one of several of us on the list can put
      together a
      > list of parts from common (cheap) resources that folks can buy and
      use, with
      > little or no electrical knowledge. A number of how-to books already
      have
      > this information.
      >
      > But let's see if anyone agrees with the "normal" readings and the "test
      > procedure" before we advance to that step.
      >
      > Who's next at the keyboard on this topic?
      >
      > Bill Kronenberger
      > Houston

      What I would like to do is set up dual meters (Volts & Amps) for each
      of my power packs, or integrate the meters into a Z Bend Track control
      connecter. Where would I get the information as to parts & assembly
      for this project?

      John L. Battey in Roanoke, TX
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