'Digital' control

Now that I'm playing with DC powered trains to run on my Gauge1 track,
I'm running into all sorts of questions which hopefully someone here can
at least direct me to possible info on.
Maerklin have their 'delta' controller, LGB have MTS and Aristo-craft
have something else. I am seeing DCC in the smaller scales and there
seems to be a level of compatibility in that, but what should I be
looking for and is there any decent on-line links that can help me out.
Since my background is electronics anyway and I have a well equipped
workshop, I don't have any problem knocking up what ever control gear I
need and have been programming controllers for more years than I care to
remeber. DC power is readily available without having to pay 100GBP +
for a 'special' power pack and at the end of the day I just want to run
A train round A track. ( At present - until I get some steam power
running )
I've picked up a Maerklin 54504 and an Aristo-craft 21001 both without
any handbooks - which I do now have - and I probably should have thought
about this before, but I expected to just put 12V in and get get some
movement :) - It looks like this could now be 18 to 22V but even that is
not actually listed anywhere.
Reply to
Lester Caine
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"Lester Caine" wrote
Although DCC has become widely accepted, it's use in the larger scales may be outside the scope & experience of this group, and you may be better served by looking at some of the more specialist groups.
Try joining Yahoo groups
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and search for DCC, LGB or similar.
Reply to
John Turner
Aristocraft has downloadable manuals:
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AFAIK, their systems are all plain DC, but they do offer radio control for both rail and battery powered trains.
LGB and Marklin have their own proprietary control systems, with incompatible plugs etc. LGB will run on 12V DC, so any 12V DC controller of sufficient capacity will work. I don't know about Marklin. To judge from their current website, they are still trying to lock customers into their own "system". But they do offer manuals.
For DCC standards and recommended practices, go to nmra.org. The NMRA (National Model Railroad Association) set and promoted DCC standards over a decade ago, and the majority of manufacturers make compliant products. The aim is interoperability, ie, to ensure that any DCC controller will work with any decoder, and to promote truly plug'n'play systems.
The main difference between small scale and large scale DCC decoders is current capacity. Power supplies in all scales must be large enough to power as many locomotives a you expect to run at the same time. Since there have been advances in digital control since NMRA set up its standards, those standards are being extended to maintain interoperability.
For rather obvious reasons, the widest variety of DCC systems are available from US manufacturers. Look for Diggitraxx, North Coast Engineering (NCE), Model Rectifier Corporation (MRC), Atlas, Train Control Systems (TCS), etc.
Have fun!
Reply to
Now that I've got down the right path, I've found all the links I needed ;) ( and there will be crib nots on the site soon )
The Basis of the DCC standard is the Lenz system from that time, which Marklin also used. Marklin (Maxi series) have a simple 4 train version, but can also run DCC with 15 trains ( at least that is what I think I've established ). Basically the scale of the system does not mater, on the whole all the stuff should be DCC compatible, so now I need to hook up the PC and see what we can do :)
Aristo-craft are also listed as using DCC but again I don't have all the deatils - yet.
Thanks for the directions people
Reply to
Lester Caine

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