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Back in the game and confused [as usual]

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  • gwhackman
    I have been out of z for appx. 15 years. The usual retirement, moving etc. reasons. This forum is fantastic. I no longer feel like the Lone Ranger in this
    Message 1 of 9 , May 28 4:32 PM
      I have been out of "z" for appx. 15 years. The usual
      retirement, moving etc. reasons. This forum is fantastic. I no
      longer feel like the Lone Ranger in this scale as opposed to years
      ago.
      When I started I was in Arizona and had access to a nice shop
      called "Roys Train World" in Mesa Az. Now I am in the boonies of New
      Hampshire and having a territorial dispute with a local Black Bear
      regarding my ownership of some bird feeders. FYI: Bear Wins. But
      that is another story.
      I am in the process of closing off the area over my garage and
      heating it for my foray back into z. From what I am gathering I
      will also have to pull some serious maintance on my engines after
      sitting in boxes all these years.
      I have scrolled back thru the post/message sections back to
      #11000 looking for a substitue for the 6727A controllers that I have
      inorder to cover the increassed rail area I am planning. Thinking
      big in the marshalling yard area.
      I noted that Model Rectifier Corp was supposed to have a z
      scale controller but could not find any reference on their web site.
      I have also tried the search mode on this site without joy.
      Most likely it is the parameters that I am using. So what else is
      new?
      Could anyone give me a good hint on how I should refernce my
      search mode to help locate viable information.
      The z scale magazine is also on my "to get" list. Thanks in
      advance to any help given. Terry
    • zbendtrack@aol.com
      ... MRC s model 1300 was modified by MicroTrains for Z scale. The modification consists of a new stick-on plastic front panel which prevents the throttle
      Message 2 of 9 , May 28 5:13 PM
        Terry:

        > I noted that Model Rectifier Corp was supposed to have a z
        > scale controller but could not find any reference on their web site.

        MRC's model 1300 was "modified" by MicroTrains for Z scale. The
        "modification" consists of a new stick-on plastic front panel which prevents the throttle
        knob from being turned past 2:00 on a clock face. Price for a MT version is
        around $30-35 in many places (retail and auction sites).

        You can also pick up brand new in the box 1300 units from a perpetual seller
        on eBay for around $15. You will have to add your own mechanical block to
        keep the throttle from advancing past the 2:00 clock face position. At that
        point, it will be identical to the MT version.

        The 1300 uses a sine-wave output that is not symmetric, which helps quite a
        bit on low speed performance on 3 pole motors, when compared to pure DC packs.

        The MRC 2800 is a dual 1300 (two throttles in one case), but the output is
        10.6vac at full throttle. Still too much for Marklin, but not for MT
        locomotives. I'd recommend you block the throttles at the 3:00 position to protect your
        Marklin locos. Around $30-35 on eBay if you are patient with your bidding.

        Quite a few list members use the 1300 and 2800 without any problems over the
        last 10 years (overheating, failures, etc.). So do several large modular
        clubs. Everyone likes to see locomotive "creep" along, and these packs are one
        solution which is commonly available.

        Warning: Most HO and N packs will "toast" a Z scale locomotive with excessive
        voltages, so if you try one, monitor locomotive heat build up in intervals of
        30 seconds. Yes, 30 seconds. One minute can be too long on a HO pack that
        pops the loco with 20vdc pulse power. Even better, run the loco with its cover
        off, so you can feel the motor temperature directly. Good advice: don't try
        to use them in the first place.

        Look in the "files" section for oiling information. If you wish to have them
        "brought back" to life by professionals, there are some excellent folks in
        Florida (who advertise in Z Track magazine) that do a 300% better job than other
        service centers out there.

        Hope the black bear doesn't taking a liking to z scale. <smile>

        Bill K.
        Houston




        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • bill.foote
        But the current Märklin Control units are rated to 10 volts max., unlike earlier ones which were rated to 8 volts ... From: To:
        Message 3 of 9 , May 28 11:09 PM
          But the current Märklin Control units are rated to 10 volts max., unlike
          earlier ones which were rated to 8 volts

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: <zbendtrack@...>
          To: <z_scale@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Thursday, May 29, 2003 1:13 AM
          Subject: Re: [z_scale] Back in the game and confused [as usual]



          > The MRC 2800 is a dual 1300 (two throttles in one case), but the output is
          > 10.6vac at full throttle. Still too much for Marklin, but not for MT
          > locomotives. I'd recommend you block the throttles at the 3:00 position
          to protect your
          > Marklin locos.
        • ted_lamar@peoplesoft.com
          ... MRC DOES NOT make a z scale powerpak, per se. There is a version that has been externally modified by Micro Trains - basically a physical stop at about
          Message 4 of 9 , May 29 7:26 AM
            > I noted that Model Rectifier Corp was supposed to have a z
            >scale controller but could not find any reference on their web site.

            MRC DOES NOT make a z scale powerpak, per se. There is a version that has
            been externally modified by Micro Trains - basically a physical stop at
            about the 70 percent throttle range.

            They are [occasionally] available on eBay for around 35 bux.

            I just use the regular MRC 1300's, available on eBay for about 15 bux. I
            am careful not to turn them up all the way. I wrote down the voltage at
            each step [posted it a long time ago] so I know what I am feeding my
            engines.

            So - In short:
            I don't think it's worth the 35 bux for the externally modified ones. Do a
            search on eBay for MRC 1300.

            T
          • Roy Stevens
            My MRC Tech II recently began doing nasty things to my Marklin loks even at low throttle settings, so I broke down and bought a Tech 4 pack with built in
            Message 5 of 9 , May 29 7:30 PM
              My MRC Tech II recently began doing nasty things to my Marklin loks even at
              low throttle settings, so I broke down and bought a Tech 4 pack with built
              in voltage and amperage meters. It cost nearly a hundred bucks, but I kick
              myself for not buying one sooner, it's an invaluable tool to measure loco
              performance and catch binding mechanisms before they become smoke
              generators.

              Roy Stevens

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            • Nelson Snedeker
              I hate to do this Roy but , to help all the other guys talking about this problem , Micro Mark sells a DC Volt meter for $19.95 which reads 0 to 20 with the 0
              Message 6 of 9 , May 29 8:32 PM
                I hate to do this Roy but , to help all the other guys talking about
                this problem , Micro Mark sells a DC Volt meter for $19.95 which reads 0
                to 20 with the 0 in the center for reading forward and reverse. I have
                4 of them in circuit with my Dual Tech 2 and Dual Tech 4 for a lot less
                than a century note . I personally get along quite nicely with only one
                5-0-5 ammmeter which may be switched into any one of the 4 circuits I
                may feel a need to monitor

                Happy "Z"ing Nel

                Roy Stevens wrote:

                > My MRC Tech II recently began doing nasty things to my Marklin loks
                > even at
                > low throttle settings, so I broke down and bought a Tech 4 pack with
                > built
                > in voltage and amperage meters. It cost nearly a hundred bucks, but I
                > kick
                > myself for not buying one sooner, it's an invaluable tool to measure
                > loco
                > performance and catch binding mechanisms before they become smoke
                > generators.
                >
                > Roy Stevens
                >
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                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • ted_lamar@peoplesoft.com
                I broke down and bought a Tech 4 pack with built in voltage and amperage meters. It cost nearly a hundred bucks, but I kick myself for not buying one
                Message 7 of 9 , May 30 9:16 AM
                  <snip>
                  I broke down and bought a Tech 4 pack with built
                  in voltage and amperage meters. It cost nearly a hundred bucks, but I kick

                  myself for not buying one sooner, it's an invaluable tool to measure loco
                  performance and catch binding mechanisms before they become smoke
                  generators.


                  Do you find the meters granular enough? It seems like the throw for
                  Voltage, and especially for Amperage, is way to short...what I mean is: You
                  can't tell the difference between 2 and 3 volts....and certainly not the
                  difference between .03 and .09 amps...Right?

                  Or have you not found that to be a problem? I know I even complained
                  about the Amperage meters on my HO MRC pak....NOt a Tech 4, but the Top of
                  the line one with Meters at the time...Like a 9500 or something....

                  Anyway, can you REALLY see a difference in Amperage between locomotives?

                  T
                • Roy Stevens
                  Ok, when you re talking hundreths of amps, the answer is NO. My response is, I don t need to. The meters are analog, which I prefer to digital to visually
                  Message 8 of 9 , May 31 7:28 AM
                    Ok, when you're talking hundreths of amps, the answer is NO. My response
                    is, I don't need to. The meters are analog, which I prefer to digital to
                    visually see dynamic fluctuations, which are a good indication of certain
                    problems, and the difference in hundreths of amps between locos is
                    irrelevant as far as I'm concerned, but when an 8800 mechanism starts
                    pulling nearly an amp unloaded, it's time to start looking for problems.
                    I agree with one response that if you have a layout with DC block control,
                    it's much better to build meters into the panel, but my layout is DCC and I
                    use the power pack on any of the three workbenches or with one of the two
                    display layouts.

                    Roy

                    >Subject: Re: Back in the game and confused [as usual]
                    >
                    >
                    >Do you find the meters granular enough? It seems like the throw for
                    >Voltage, and especially for Amperage, is way to short...what I mean is: You
                    >can't tell the difference between 2 and 3 volts....and certainly not the
                    >difference between .03 and .09 amps...Right?
                    >
                    >Or have you not found that to be a problem? I know I even complained
                    >about the Amperage meters on my HO MRC pak....NOt a Tech 4, but the Top of
                    >the line one with Meters at the time...Like a 9500 or something....
                    >
                    > Anyway, can you REALLY see a difference in Amperage between locomotives?
                    >
                    >T

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                  • ted_lamar@peoplesoft.com
                    ... Agreed. I actually didn t want to say hundredths of amps.... In my experience, the difference in amperage required to run my different locos is
                    Message 9 of 9 , Jun 2, 2003
                      >Ok, when you're talking hundreths of amps, the answer is NO. My response
                      >is, I don't need to.

                      Agreed. I actually didn't want to say hundredths of amps....

                      In my experience, the difference in amperage required to run my different
                      locos is undetectable....[with the Analog meter] maybe this is a good sign.

                      When I get my new GS-3, maybe I will see more.

                      T
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