Yes, we actually end up with analog sized blocks. If there is a short in a block we don't take down the booster or the system. If an analog system has a short in a block it takes down everything on that power pack or you have breakers somewhere. No difference.
Dividing the layout into DCC power distribution blocks, or regions, is an OPTION that does not have a direct effect on the system's ability to simultaneously operate multiple trains.*
Dividing a DC/block/cab control layout into blocks that can be assigned to a fixed number of cabs, and that can only be assigned to one cab at any instant in time, is MANDATORY if you wish to operate more than one train or loco at a time on the layout.
You really should break a DCC layout into segments, but it is not an ultimate requirement in order to be able to operate multiple trains and engines.
Awww, c'mon GP, my DCC stuff didn't cost as much as a computer box. Even if you got it second hand. Add a monitor and peripherals and you have twice as much in the computer as I do in my DCC box and handheld. I can add three more handhelds for less than the price of the software to run RR&Co.
That's what I mean. I don't need to program at all. None.
Don't know about that. Oldest decoders I have are ending their first decade, so it's too early to tell. At my age I may not be around until the decoders expire. I will likely finish first. However..............I have worked with relays that were older than I by several dcades.
The computer(s) is made of cast-off bits from the last twenty years - the dump would charge me to get rid of it!
I only have two hands and the software is free!
Whichever control system I use I would have a computer program.
My (unstated) point was that decoders have moved on since the first, second and third generation, but an old relay still does the same as a new relay. I've had failed relays and failed decoders.
The Royal Wuerttemberg State Railways in transition to Deutsche Reichsbahn Gessellschaft. (transition periods are always fun :-) The Ulm-Stuttgart line. (a heavily trafficked line) specifically the Geislinger Steige. ( a steep gradient bottle neck requiring bankers) A mix of around 50/50 passenger and goods, with international traffic east-west (France-Italy/Austria/Hungary) and north-south. (Germany /Switzerland/Gotthard/Italy) Passenger; long distance express, short distance express, local, suburban and branch line. Locos are a mix of pre WWI (1860-1920) with a few of the new standard German classes.
I've done that before and this time I've gone for _relative_ simplcity. Each block needs to be individually wired, with a detector module in series. (as would happen with DC or DCC) In place of your circuit breaker is one (or more) of my relays. (we're still about equal) The relay control wire links back to the computer interface. The detectors link back to the interface. Cabs link to the interface. The bit that really is different from DCC is of course the bench mounted controllers and the associated wiring to the block relays. The controllers themselves can be DCC decoders, so long as the motor output is protected and a reasonable amperage, but I like building controllers. :-) Sure, I have to solder a lot of relays, but I have almost the same number of locos available as track blocks, so there's not much in it either way.
Let's see - early decoders aren't acceptable because they don't do as much as current ones. But they still work, right? Ernie hasn't been replacing relays because they don't have finer speed step gradations.
You can only use that to apply to yourself. It won't apply to me, as I do not have twenty years of cast off computer junk to scavenge. Neither do most people, I'm guessing. My assertion stands. A Digitrax Chief set is US$405.00. Less than half the cost of a pretty good computer box and monitor. Less than half the cost of just the microprocessor on a high-end unit, and the Chief is top of the line. An NCE Powerhouse Pro is US$390.00, even less than the Digitrax unit, and I don't need to buy even one 78pence relay. All that computer "junk" didn't just coalesce from nothingness. Somewhere along the way it all got paid for.
Very funny I have provisions for other operators that do not own handheld units. But I'll bet you knew that.
Indeed you are correct, but we can't read your mind. You need to so say. I try not to read between the lines too much, because with the vast cultural gulfs between individuals in this worldwide community, it is too easy to be wrong.
Well, we're a pretty advanced country here in NZ. Just about everyone of working age has a computer, most would have an old one gathering dust in a wardrobe.
A used computer here is about $100- plus $50- for a reasonable second-hand monitor. That's about US100-for a usable computer. Below that price people junk them.
It's cheap junk, but it still does everything it was designed to do.
I guessed, but I'm not about to assume! :^)
Ahh, a mutual problem!
Sure, I assumed you yanks would have old computers in the wardrobe just like us!
No I have stock for any year from 1923-32. Adolf came to power in 1933 and there was serious scrapping of any loco that didn't exist in large quantities.
1925-28 saw the scrapping of all the oddities that had been kept going through WWI, little
2-4-0s, Klose flexible framed locos and the like.
It's small just now, 17'x4'6"-8' but it's coming up for it's third move so I'm seriously looking at an ISO container home for it. The initial concept was a compact three section layout capable of having extra sections spliced in the middle joins and additions at the outer corners. I don't walk so the 'around the walls' layout doesn't work for me. I use an office chair around the layout so I can sit at various heights or stand. (but not walk)
Absolutely, as well as the local history, customs ... A funny part of it all, after setting the location I recently found that some of my ancestors came from the region.
Captain Handbrake @ ACL.com wrote in news: firstname.lastname@example.org:
In two sentences you have captured the crux of all the pro & con arguments about DC vs. DCC. The bottom line is that some folks like the challenge of wiring tricky DC layouts. And some of us prefer to focus on the other aspects of the hobby.
I've done the DC thing, back when it was "the only game in town" when I built a layout for my kids 17 years ago. It was more chore than challenge. I've done electronics of some kind since I was 10 years old, so ho hum, DC circuits...big deal. (FYI, ex-USAF missle comm specialist, ex-Telco, FCC General Radiotelephone license, FCC amateur license.)
What I discovered with that first layout was that it was the terrain and scenery and structures that captured my interest, in addition to the operating. So I have become a DCC enthusiast because it frees me to spend more time on the creative parts of the hobby and less on (what to me is) busy-work.
Everyone has their preference and no solution is perfect for everyone, so let's just all agree to disagree on the subject.
There is one point I haven't seen in the DC vs DCC discussion? and that is resale value. DC block wiring consists of panels, wire, and switches, most of which, on the whole, have little or no resale value. Almost all the DCC systems, when listed on ebay or elsewhere, go for decent prices. A Digitrax "Big Boy" system, which was the earliest, get good resale and it's quite a few years old.