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Rayman4449

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About Rayman4449

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    Gardner, KS

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  1. Rayman4449

    Split Jaw Clamps - Over the rail joiner

    Sure thing I just updated the over the rail clamp photo on the page I linked to.
  2. Rayman4449

    Dash 8's coming in.

    You will be getting an email from me shortly on the engine Jerry
  3. Rayman4449

    Split Jaw Clamps - Over the rail joiner

    Bob, see this link see if this helps any: http://www.rayman4449.com/Rail_Connections.htm
  4. Rayman4449

    Split Jaw Clamps - Over the rail joiner

    Moved this discussion to a separate thread.
  5. Rayman4449

    Split Jaw Clamps - Over the rail joiner

    For expansion, if using the direct to rail clamps the rail joints will stay fixed if they are tightened down fully. In my case my curves are free floating so they can push out or pull in as needed but at least on my layout so I haven't had issues with it. (My straights are screwed down to boards (although they are more free floating in more places as time has gone on). I will note that I'm using Stainless steel which may have a lower expansion factor than brass or other metals. If someone needed expansion points in a straight, Split-Jaw does make a double long clamp that is made to allow for expansion. Having seen both types, for me personally I would only ever use the direct to rail type. For those using over-slider joiner clamps with slider joiners and they seem to be fine that is great, but reliable track power outdoors is one of the more challenging issues people deal with in the hobby and what drives a good number to just go battery power. Aside from brass oxidation on the rail, unreliable/oxidized joints that use slider joiners are the other main source of problems and from my experience, direct to rail clamps completely eliminates any question on rail joint connection reliability. My layout outside has been deployed for 10+ years it is still 100% reliable with no track power issues. Again that is partly because of Stainless rail but without the clamps I would have issues. I started out with rail joiners on my first small 120ft oval (SS track and SS slider joiners) and within a year or two I was having connection issues. With the way those slider joiners were designed it would have been lucky if an over the rail clamp would have made any material difference given how thick/hard the slider metal was (resisted bending). I can just say, if someone wants a truly reliable track powered G scale layout, removing all slider joiners and going with direct to rail clamps (of the same metal type) is a must. (It is good to use clamps of the same metal type ie brass clamps on brass rail or Stainless clamps on stainless rail because of Galvanic corrosion (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galvanic_corrosion)). I dont know that dissimilar metal corrosion would be a material factor for what we are doing, but the bottom line is if you are going to go through the expense and buy clamps, it is best to do it right and avoid any chance of issues.
  6. Rayman4449

    Split Jaw Clamps - Over the rail joiner

    A direct to rail clamp will be able to use 100% of its clamping force for the clamp itself to actually more bite into the rail on a smaller surface area. A direct to rail clamp will be making solid direct contact with the bottom and bottom sides of the rail profile. With a slider in place, an over the rail the clamp can at best exert some force only on the side of the rail profile. The amount of clamping force on these clamps is limited, they aren't like bench vices we us in our garages. They can exert only a certain amount of force before the screw bends.
  7. Looking good guys and Jerry looks like you've made good progress on the new layout Jerry, looking at the photos had one question. Do you have slider joiners and then have split-jaw clamps over the outside of it? (In Red) I mean this as if you want to have the real benefit of rail-clamps (rock solid connections) it is best to eliminate all the slider joiners completely and just use direct to rail clamps. The clamp over slider joiner versions are still going to end up with less than ideal track connections.
  8. Rayman4449

    Big boy issue

    I will say that I haven't confirmed with USA Trains if the unit is PWM but based on what they are saying in documentation and the video gives me concern. Also given what we are seeing in this other case with TIU damage I feel it is worthwhile to raise the concern. If I get access to one of these USA Train Power supplies I will put it on my oscilloscope and check the waveform. I also told Tom that if he heads down this way to bring them with him and I will put them on the scope.
  9. Rayman4449

    USA Train Power 10 and DCS

    Larry, I updated my prior replies regarding the USA Trains Trainpower 10 power supply. Based on new information and possible issue with another user I would avoid using it with your MTH Trains and control system
  10. Rayman4449

    Big boy issue

    Larry, see the update to my post above and the updated information regarding the USA Trains Trainpower 10 from the USA Trains manual and the video on their website, I would personally avoid using that power supply.
  11. The power supply you use with your MTH Protosound 2/ 3 equipped trains (and with your DCS Control equipment like the TIU) is important for two reasons: 1) Possible control issues/malfunctions with the engines and 2) Possible actual damage to the electronics. (Note: You can damage your train electronics with too high a voltage or with PWM(Pulse Width Modulated) voltages of a high enough voltage spike frequency that can damage electronics components in your engines or control system.) What you want to control your MTH PS2/PS3 trains (and power your TIU) is a power supply that provides clean DC (or AC) power with an unaltered waveform. The problem is it isn't always clear what you are getting with the power supply you purchase. PWM power supplies for instance (which can be damaging if used) don't always state they are PWM power. It is best to stick with only those power supplies that are recommended. See this write-up on power supplies: http://www.rayman4449.com/DCS_Tips.htm#Type_of_Power_Supply Recommended DC power supplies: (From Rayman4449.com DCS Tips page) Best: - Bridgewerks (Throttle type power supply) *Use 'To Track' output terminals for best results* - http://www.bridgewerks.com/Pages/MagnumSRSeries.html (5, 10, 15 amp) - http://www.bridgewerks.com/Pages/Mag20SRM.html (20 amp) - http://www.bridgewerks.com/Pages/Magnum25TDR.html (25 amp) - Bridgewerks (Power Mag regulated power suply) - http://www.bridgewerks.com/Pages/PowerSupplies.html (25 amp @ 24volts) (see Power Mag) Acceptable: - MRC Power 'G': http://www.modelrec.com/ - Bridgewerks Mag 15 (new model regulated at 24v output) (This may not provide the same track signal levels as their throttle type supplies) Not Recommended: - Switching mode power supplies: (These can be used but I would avoid them) - AC Outputs on Bridgewerks power supplies: (Will get lower track signal levels) - Bridgewerks fixed output terminals on Throttle type power supplies. *Use 'To Track' output terminals for best results* - USA Trains Trainpower 10 Avoid/Do not use: - Pulse Width Modulated (PWM) - Bridgewerks Mag 15 (old version with unregulated output of 35+ volts) - USA Trains Trainpower 10 (This power supply indicates it modifies the waveform and may be PWM) Voltages: - O gauge/One Gauge: 0-24v recommended voltage (under DCS Command Control with TIU and remote use 18-24v) - HO Scale: 0-24v recommended voltage (under DCS Command Control with TIU and remote use 18-24v Maximum)
  12. Rayman4449

    Big boy issue

    UPDATE 9/15/18: USA Trains Trainpower 10: Was talking with Chuck and he pointed out this in the USA trains manual "The variable control not only limits the output voltage but also sets the waveform appropriate to the scale train being run. This feature makes the TRAIN POWER 10 a pack for all gauges." I also found this from the video on their website: (Video start at 6:50) Note: "The output voltage is high enough for G scale, and the output voltage waveform is delicate enough for N scale. The design of this power pack includes a very special circuit that provides the correct waveform and voltage for slow speed operation without overheating the most sensitive motor." Adjusting the waveform for analog operation of trains (based on scale) can be relevant because if the PWM duty cycle for instance isn't high enough the motor wont function correctly/optimally/efficiently. So again, what we want for the operation of MTH DCS trains is a clean, unmodified DC waveform and this power supply does NOT provide that. I would advise against using the USA Trains Trainpower 10 power supply for MTH trains and the DCS control system. I know the power supply is the one area where most hate to spend the big bucks on (it isn't cool and slick as a nice new engine), but what you get does matter. It's why I recommend Bridgewerks from the start to avoid and minimize problems (which is based on my own experience, I learned the hard way myself). Please see this post about power supplies:
  13. Rayman4449

    Big boy issue

    Wanted to share an update on Tom's issue. Issues so far: Tom's first TIU failed and had to be returned to MTH Tom's second TIU has now failed (due to damaged/exploded capacitor) and has to be returned to MTH again. Tom's friend was at his house trying to run (supposedly with Bridgewerks power supply) and his capacitor exploded on his TIU. I believe that we will find that this TIU wasn't just used with the friends Bridgewerks powersupply but also at some point prior run on Tom's power supplies Power supplies: Tom's: From prior conversations I thought he indicated he was using a Bridgewerks throttle power supply on his layout. From conversation today Tom isn't using Bridgewerks but rather a 'Computer' type power supply and/or USA Trains Trainpower 10. (I haven't confirmed if the USA Trains Trainpower 10 is PWM or not) Conclusion: I researched the one other time I saw this problem and it was when the customer was using a PWM (Pulse Width Modulated) power supply and once he switched to Bridgewerks never had another problem. Also spoke with MTH and their head of service agrees this is most likely the result of damage due to PWM power. So I believe the issue here is power supply related, causing not only the damage to the TIUs but also operational malfunctions. The power supply is hitting the TIU with PWM frequencies high enough to blow the capacitor in question and certainly causing control and remote malfunctions. To have three TIUs all fail in the same manner all happening to a single customer is unprecedented and can only be due to the power supply being used. My recommendation is to get a Bridgewerks throttle type power supply (Magnum SR-15 is a good one to get) as per my original recommendation on 6/11/17 via email. Raymond
  14. UP Steam Update: 08/29/18: Looks like they have made brand new steps on the front pilot and completely 100% sandblasting clean the cylinder castings. This thing is going to look incredible when it's done. https://www.up.com/aboutup/community/inside_track/steam-update-08-29-2018.htm
  15. Rayman4449

    Aristocraft dash 9 motor blocks

    I would check this: http://www.rayman4449.com/Aristocraft_Dash-9_E-8_SD45_Mods.htm#Aristocraft_Dash-9_Gear-box_noise Overall it depends, the motorblocks may never be as quiet or smooth as some others that are out there.
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