Author Topic: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout  (Read 1731 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« on: September 12, 2014, 10:53:58 AM »
0
Anybody have issues runnung BLI DCC with sound PA's or E8's on a DC layout?  Just scrubbed and cleaned the track on a small DC layout with the Woodland Scenics track cleaning setup (loved that by the way) two days before the issue.  The units are brand new and it would have been their inagural run.

Single units would delay sound startup, sit and whirr, run and stop, etc. 

Lashups would try to drag two units, just would not go at all.  If the polarity was reversed the lead uint would switch and try to drag the other two, and the unit at the other end would not try to run when it just tride to drag the lashup in the other direction.

These types of models are relatively new to me so it may be that I am partially unfamiliar.  I thought they are DC compatible.  Maybe the controllers are not powerful enough?  I did not build the layout but there appears to be many feeders to the track.

Here is a pic of the layout:


« Last Edit: September 21, 2014, 10:39:59 AM by GaryHinshaw »

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 21327
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +1960
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2014, 11:33:42 AM »
0
Funny how people are now afraid to post anything in sections other than product discussion.  :D 

It might be that the DC power pack (you didn't mention brand or model) is putting out pulsed DC which is "confusing" the decoder.

Try running the model on a piece of track using a regular fresh 9V battery.  That battery is really handy for testing N scale locos because it has a high enough voltage and the terminals make it easy to either connect them to the track or to loco's wheels.
--- Peteski de Snarkski

-"Look at me, I'm satirical!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm anal retentive!!!"
-"Look at me, I have the most posts evahhhh!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm snarky!!!!"
-"Look at me, I have OCD!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm a curmudgeon!!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm not negative, just blunt and honest!!!"

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2014, 01:44:10 PM »
0
Awesome= forgot about that trick!  Thanks Peter!

muktown128

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 570
  • Respect: +33
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2014, 02:25:31 PM »
0
John,

I have 2 BLI E8 units and have run these with DC as a single and double headed with no issues.

Scott

Chris333

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 13506
  • Respect: +2778
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2014, 03:12:47 PM »
0
I recently bought a On30 loco with sound and this is what I got on a DC layout:

I think my problem was the power pack I was using didn't have enough amp output.

Nato

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2089
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +63
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2014, 11:35:06 PM »
0
 :|        Funny, I reciently expierenced the reverse issue. My Precision Craft now BLI GN E-7 refuesed to run in DCC on the Wasatch N Scale layout http://www.wasatchnscale.org at a recient show, and putting it on a programing track still left it dead in the water. I thought maybe something had been burned out, but when I got it home and put it on my DC layout (uses CVP Wirless) it started up like it always does on DC with the diesel sound and the Mars Light . Go Figure. Nate Goodman (Nato). Salt Lake,Utah.

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2014, 09:57:23 PM »
0
Peteski, do you think having two if those pure dc kato power packs would solve the problem? I might just spring for them if you think they would.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 21327
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +1960
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2014, 11:35:09 PM »
0
Peteski, do you think having two if those pure dc kato power packs would solve the problem? I might just spring for them if you think they would.

John, you never mentioned if running it with a pater solved the problem or not. I also don't have direct experience with Kato power packs, but if they are pure DC then if the problem was with pulsed-DC throttle, then they would solve the problem.   That was a mouthful...  :D
--- Peteski de Snarkski

-"Look at me, I'm satirical!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm anal retentive!!!"
-"Look at me, I have the most posts evahhhh!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm snarky!!!!"
-"Look at me, I have OCD!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm a curmudgeon!!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm not negative, just blunt and honest!!!"

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2014, 08:25:27 PM »
0
So, I can get one loco to run on a battery. I can get one loco to run by itself. I cannot get more than one loco to run simultaneously. 

The power packs are MRC Railpower 1370's. 

Hornwrecker

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 401
  • Respect: +25
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2014, 09:33:56 PM »
0
John, if you want to bring them over and try on my layout (DC and DCC), you're welcome anytime.  I also have an old DC power supply with meters that might to help see how much juice is needed to get the sound going, before the loco starts moving. 
Bob

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2014, 10:00:28 PM »
0
Hi Bob, are you back in choo choo mode? I might just take you up on that!

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 21327
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +1960
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2014, 10:57:45 PM »
0
So, I can get one loco to run on a battery. I can get one loco to run by itself. I cannot get more than one loco to run simultaneously. 

The power packs are MRC Railpower 1370's.

I guess I'm bit confused by your statement.  Let me know if I got things right or wrong.

There are multiple BLI Sound-equipped locos.  Each loco runs fine when powered by a 9V battery?
But I'm confused whether you couldn't get 2 locos together to run from a 9V battery or you couldn't get 2 to run using the MRC throttle?  Does one loco run ok using the MRC throttle?  I didn't think so.
--- Peteski de Snarkski

-"Look at me, I'm satirical!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm anal retentive!!!"
-"Look at me, I have the most posts evahhhh!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm snarky!!!!"
-"Look at me, I have OCD!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm a curmudgeon!!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm not negative, just blunt and honest!!!"

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2014, 07:04:23 AM »
0
Sorry Peter, the battery was not strong enough to run more than one loco, and in some cases when I tried to flip the battery polarity on the track the loco would not run.  It drained rather quickly- brand new Duracell.

Power pack:
-Will run each loco separately fine in both directions. 
-If I try to run multiples, say two e8's back to back, one loco runs and tries to drag the other, which won't run at all. If I reverse polarity, the no running loco runs, and the other loco is dragged.

I think I need to call paragon or something. This has me worried.  There can't be any power loss in that small amount of track, which I just cleaned.

The other question is whether or not that power pack is sending pulsed power, I simply don't know enough about it.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 21327
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +1960
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #13 on: September 16, 2014, 04:15:40 PM »
0
John,
you are right, a 9V battery cannot supply very much current and it has rather small capacity.

The problem you are describing sounds strange.  I'm not familiar with that throttle.  But if you have a digital multimeter, there is a quick and dirty way to check how much AC is on the track output.  First measure the track voltage with the meter set for DC.  then at the same throttle setting, set the multimeter for AC and check the voltage.  The AC range will measure the AC ripple on the track output. If the AC reading is very small then the throttle is sending filtered DC which should be ok for DCC decoders.  Of the AC reading is more than I would say about 20% of the DC reading then the throttle is sending out pulsing DC which might confuse decoders.  This is only a quick and dirty check (you would really need an oscilloscope to get more accurate info).

Do this check with 1 and then 2 locos on the track (do not check with no load).

One possibility is that the throttle has a small filter cap which can filter out most of the AC ripple with a single loco load but adding a 2nd model puts enough load on the throttle that the cap is not longer filtering the voltage enough.  I suppose that you could try a single BLI loco and add few standard DC locos to increase the load on the throttle.  If the BLI loco starts acting funny with few DC locos on the track then the filter cap theory might be valid.
--- Peteski de Snarkski

-"Look at me, I'm satirical!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm anal retentive!!!"
-"Look at me, I have the most posts evahhhh!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm snarky!!!!"
-"Look at me, I have OCD!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm a curmudgeon!!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm not negative, just blunt and honest!!!"

Lemosteam

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3999
  • Gender: Male
  • PRR, The Standard Railroad of my World
  • Respect: +1220
    • Designer at Keystone Details
Re: Running issues with BLI dcc/sound on DC layout
« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2014, 09:19:21 PM »
0
Ok, so with Hornwreckers help, I was able to learn some things.

1. Two locomotives will run on DC and DCC on Bob's layout
2. The two A units are set to run in the same direction by default, so when they are flipped back to back they try to run opposite of each other, and must be reprogrammed to run opposite of each other. (This makes sense as if someone bought one loco or the other, the customer would want them to,run normally)
3. The Railpower 1370 puts out only 0.2A (@ 200u whatever that means) at full throttle. It WILL NOT run two locomotives simultaneously.
4. Sometimes the loco,will run erratically regardless of throttle position
5. The locomotive will not even activate until the throttle is past 50%.
6. I do believe that the throttle only powers a main line only (no accessories)

So is there a way to amplify the throttle as an add-on?
Can I replace these packs with a Kato unit, would they have more power?