--- "DaleHalterman" <dnhalt@c...> wrote:
>> Will the "System Joerger" Speed regulator work with the RELCO
>> Track Cleaning generator?
> Jeremy, This question must have slipped by you since a did not
> see an answer. I am also interested in knowing about this.
Dale, it didn't slip by, but I wanted to give a definitive answer, so
I've been doing further experiments. But I can't beat the laws of
The short answer is: NO, the new "De Luxe" speed regulator will not
work with electronic track cleaners like the Relco and Gaugemaster.
The long answer is still "no", but there is an explanation. The
regulator uses feedback from the motor to keep the speed constant. At
slow speeds the feedback (counter-EMF) is very small - for example:
at its slowest, one of my 5-pole motors produces 80 millivolts
immediately after the end of the pulse, which dies away to zero after
about 5 milliseconds. This is enough: the slight variations from one
pulse to the next are used to adjust the pulse width and rate, so
that the average feedback, and therefore the average speed, is
Unfortunately electronic track cleaners pass the track power through
a small transformer - this is how the high frequency, high voltage is
injected onto the track - and the winding acts as an inductance which
distorts the feedback from the motor. The distortion happens even if
the track cleaner is not powered! The regulator can make no sense of
the distorted feedback, so the speed goes haywire and the loco
travels too fast or not smoothly. There seems to be no cure.
Distortion also occurs if the track power is passed through a diode
or a transistor.
If you want to try it for yourself, if you use a Relco be sure to
wire the blue capacitor across the track terminals on the regulator -
the Gaugemaster has a capacitor built in.
The alternative to an electronic track cleaner is clean track, and
maybe a touch of Wahl oil. The regulator indicates when the loco has
lost contact with the track by lighting the LED, so it is fairly easy
to find the trouble spots and take remedial action. Because the
regulator uses pulse power it is not as susceptible to track problems
as a pure-DC controller.